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Chapter 107: Jeannie the Cynic

"I'm going to kill him," Jeannie said, as she stared out the kitchen window.

"Aw, don't be such a buzzkill," Bo said from where he was seated at the kitchen island.  He lowered his spoon into a bowl of oatmeal.  "Besides, if you want to blame anyone, blame me."

Jeannie turned and quirked an eyebrow.

"All right. . . .  Andy invited me to go surfing and I just kind of let Shivaughn know that he would be out there."  He chuckled silently at her expression.  "It's not a big deal.  He likes her and she likes him."

"It is a big deal," Jeannie said as she picked up her cup of coffee and walked over to the island.  She did not sit down, but just leaned against it.  "Did anyone ever tell you about my freshman year of college?"

"No, but I suspect you're about to."

Jeannie remained completely serious.  "It was spring break and I invited two of my roommates to go to England with me.  It seemed like a good idea.  Dad was off on business somewhere and Andy was home on leave from Afghanistan."

"Okay.  So you had that giant estate to yourselves," Bo said.  "Sounds like a great trip."

"Oh, it was -- until both my roommates fell for Andy."

"Both?"  Bo tried unsuccessfully not to grin.  He changed it to a frown when he saw the stern look on Jeannie's face.

"Both," she repeated.  "He slept with both of them and neither knew about the other until they each thought they had a date with him on the next-to-last night of the trip."  Jeannie paused dramatically.  "Do you have any idea what it's like to be on a 14-hour plane ride sitting between two woman who not only refuse to speak to each other, but want to gouge each other's eyes out?"

Bo burst into laughter.  It wasn't just the image of Jeannie on the plane that set him off, but her completely serious demeanor as she told the story.

Jeannie just shook her head.  "Men," she muttered.

"Oh, c'mon, Counselor," Bo protested.  "You have to admit it's pretty funny."

"Maybe to you, but I had to live with them for two more months.  And they were both pissed at me for not warning them about Andy."

That made Bo laugh even harder.  He thought about all the trials and tribulations that his kids and Roman's kids had gone through.  "Seriously . . . Jeannie, if that's been a big problem in your life, you're pretty lucky."  He glanced out the window to where Andrew was showing Shivaughn how to stand up on a surfboard.  "And you don't really have to worry about that happening here.  You only brought one roommate this time."

Jeannie scowled.

"Okay.  But they're both adults.  And look at them.  If they want to have a good time, you should relax and let them."  He gave her a knowing glance.  "You're not going to stop them."

With a shake of her head, Jeannie rolled her eyes.  Then she took a sip of her coffee.  "Since when did you become a romantic, Uncle Bo?  I thought you were the big tough cop."

"That's your Uncle Roman," Bo said with a wink.  "He's the tough cop.  Me . . . I let him do the tough work and just take the credit for it.  Besides I know a thing or two about falling in love."  Or three or four, he added silently. 

"Love?"  Jeannie rolled her eyes again.  "They just met, and Andy's the king of hook-ups.  They're not in love.  Besides, nobody actually falls in love anymore."

"Ooohhhh," Bo said, making a motion like he was being shot with an arrow through the heart.  "You wound me with your cynicism.  But one day, Counselor, when you've fallen for someone -- and they're gonna be damn lucky for it -- I'm going to remind you of this conversation and you're gonna laugh at how ridiculous you sounded."

"It'll be a cold day in hell before that happens," Jeannie said.

"I'm already shivering."  Bo tried not to laugh, but he was interrupted by a voice from behind him.

"Are you teasing my daughter, little brother?"  Kim had just entered the kitchen.

He held up his hand, so that his index finger and thumb were about a half-inch apart.  "Only that much.  What have you been teaching these children of yours, Kimber?  The Counselor here is too young to be this cynical."

Kim shrugged.  "Welcome to my world.  Jeannie's 22 going on 40."

"I'm standing right here and I can hear what you're saying," Jeannie said.

"You are, aren't you?"  Bo said that in a teasing tone and added a wink.  He was rather enjoying this.  Jeannie was book smart, but she had a lot to learn about the world.  Then he looked at Kim.  "I'm surprised at you, Sis.  How could you not teach them about the importance of being in love?"

Whoops.  From the look on Kim's face, Bo realized that might not have been the best thing to say.  Between Shane and Phillip -- and this Cal character in the middle -- that was not a topic he wanted to broach right now.  He decided to rapidly change the subject.

"So what time do I have to be at the hospital?" he asked.

"10 a.m.," Kim said.  "You've got another half-hour before we have to leave.  Who knows what traffic will be like."

"You don't have to go, Kimber.  I can do it alone."  The last thing Bo wanted to do was make Kim expend energy on him.

"Trust me, Bo, you're going to want someone with you," Kim said.  "After chemo, I know how boring it can get being stuck for hours hooked up to a machine.  So you're stuck with me."

"Fair enough," he said with a grin.  "I'm not complaining."  He motioned his head in the direction of Jeannie.  "And while we're at it, we can figure out how to turn this little cynic into a hopeless romantic like the rest of us Bradys."

He ignored Jeannie's derisive snort as she stalked out of the kitchen toward the deck.  Kim watched her daughter leave and then turned to Bo, "Little brother, if that's your goal, you've got your work cut out for you."


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Jan. 31st, 2011 09:55 pm (UTC)
Jeannie's so setting herself up for a fall. Her cynicism may be understandable, but it's not going to protect her forever. :-)

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )