Hello, there. It's me, Liz, speaking for herself again. I suppose by now you've heard of the mess surrounding James's birth so I'd like to clear the air. It is, sad to say, more than likely (I'd say 85-90% likely) that Anthony isn't, after all, his father. As you might remember he'd made a huge, hysterical fool of himself when he'd learned I'd gone 'roadside' with Eric long before he gave Howard the nipple twist of ultimate doom. My response to that was just as classy as his: I got hammered and flew Air Blackwood like an idiot. Anthony's behavior doesn't excuse what I did but it does explain it; I just hope that James can forgive me for the chaos he'll be dealing with. I just wish I know who to discuss this with; I don't know Claire well enough to do anything other than ask if she can sit for James and Françoise from time to time. (I hope I wasn't being as pushy and stupid as Mom would be. Then again, I also hope I don't end up with her bulbous snoot.) I know that the Richardses that stayed here think that's a stupid way to get a sounding board but, damn it, I was raised by stupid people. It'll take years to drain the Kool-Aid from my blood stream.
Speaking of Claire, I have good news and bad news to report. She and Iris both tell me that the two of them had a nice chat over tea after her visit with Grandpa Jim. Finding out the he and Grandma Marian did the best thing they could have done at the time answered a question her brain knew but her heart didn't; she also seems to have bonded a little with Mike and April. That's the plus side of having a streaming video feed from home, even if you yourself have to be told how to use it. (It's sort of humbling to know that Iris is far more ahead of the high-tech curve than you are.) The minus side, of course, comes from the fact that she met Mom and Dad; knowing that her mother is a loon and her step-siblings have a drooling pervert for a dad kind of put a damper on things. Let's just say that she'll be glad when Mike, Dee and their kids are more settled in down in Colorado; I doubt that she'll be too whippy about going to Milboring any time soon.
Not that she'll be alone; I don't expect Iris to be living there all that long after Grand-dad passes. She has two children of her own that would be glad to have her and, let's be honest, she'd be glad to accept. After she leaves, that will pretty much the last bridge left to burn for my parents. From what Mike tells me, she's not only babbling incoherently about one of her trips to Mexico, she's breaking into people's houses at night and using the john without flushing. Mrs Poirier tells me that she's made at least three, shall we say, late-night deposits at the bank this month alone. What's more, she's still got it in her head that April, who's living the good life on the farm by now, is one of Dad's receptionists. That meant that Mike and Uncle Phil were the only people from the family at her high-school graduation. She'd e-mailed me a nasty little peace of clip-art: an empty mortarboard hat saying "Congrats, Gradautes." It's nasty because that's pretty much how Mom and Dad value all her hard work. I know that doesn't make much sense but their absence from her night gets to me.
Ah, well; back to my problems. I wish I could say that therapy is going easily but, like I said at the top of the letter, I'd pretty much gut-punched Anthony; I can tell him that he doesn't deserve what happened to him but I can't quite make him believe it. He may not be the nicest guy but even he deserves a little happiness in his life; his muttering about how maybe he wasn't meant for it doesn't help much, though. It seems to me that the two of us do have something in common after all; we both need to figure out what to do when we grow up.
That's enough from me for now; I have to wait by the computer so I'll be there when the web video I've been dreading for the last few weeks came. I know Grandpa was glad to see his namesake, even if it was just over the Net, but part of me wishes that the younger James could get to know more than an MPEG file on a Blu-Ray disc. I'll spare you the truisms about how short time is and wish you a happier month than mine.
Until then, yours:
ETA: As aprilp_katje noted, Liz has no immediate prospects in the event of a break-up with Anthony. Bev and Laura have offered to get her back on her feet but she feels no real bond with them so things might get tricky in the next few months. Good thing for her that Lynn left the door open for Warren to return.