No less than ten minutes later, Mom showed up again and Maxxie had no choice but to let her in. I slipped my t-shirt back on so it looked like I’d only recently woken up and pretended to be all sleepy when she came in. I lay on the couch and she went out to the kitchen.
"What happened here?"
"I made lasagne" Maxxie said.
" This is lasagne?"
"Hey, at least I'm trying. I did warn you when you first met me that I can't cook"
"I expected better than this"
"I think it was a reasonable attempt for someone that's only cooked lasagne once before in his whole life" he said, kind of irritably.
"You need cooking lessons"
"No shit, Sherlock" Maxxie muttered under his breath and Mom frowned.
Mom cleaned up the mess that was the last of the lasagne and Maxxie glared a tiny bit. I gave him a look that said ‘be nice’ and he sat next to me.
"I hate other people cleaning my stuff" he whispered.
"If it keeps her busy, let her do it"
I could tell he wasn’t happy with it at all and I took his hand. He squeezed a little, taking care not to look in the kitchen. I heard Mom start to clean more stuff and Maxxie shut his eyes, no doubt pretending like my mom wasn’t cleaning his apartment. I huggled him and he cuddled back gently.
“This place is a mess" Mom said from the kitchen.
"I was gonna tidy up while Hadley was asleep"
"What stopped you?"
"You decided you wanted to be here and Hadley woke up"
And engage Mom’s worry mode. "Honey, I'm sorry I made you wake up. Are you getting enough sleep? Getting enough to eat? I'll cook you something"
"Mom, stop. I'm fine" I held back my annoyance.
"We just had lasagne" Maxxie said, looking a little pissed off.
"That was hardly a meal" Mom said. The failsagne might not have been much of a meal but the takeout we had after was.
I had to give Maxxie some credit, though. Mom acted as if he didn’t exist and when she did actually acknowledge him, it was to be mean. But Maxxie stuck around anyway. I felt myself smile a little, knowing he most likely just wanted to go and hide or go up to the roof. I kissed his temple and he pecked me on the lips.
"What do you even eat?" Mom asked, looking in the fridge.
"Food" Maxxie muttered quietly.
"We eat takeout, Mom"
Mom looked both horrified and pissed off.
"Kinda makes sense, though, if I can't cook" Maxxie said but Mom kind of ignored him.
"You shouldn't be eating rubbish like that in your condition"
I laughed. "I'm not pregnant, Mom" I said and mumbled to Maxxie "Although, I am a little late"
I giggled and he smiled. "Well that's why I tried to make a proper meal for him”
Mom rolled her eyes a little bit. "No more takeout, you're getting decent cooked meals from now on"
I whined a little. "Decent cooked meals didn't stop me being anaemic"
Mom stopped what she was doing and Maxxie looked at me. Yes, that was probably a very stupid thing to do but I just wanted her to stop going on about “decent cooked meals”.
"You're what?" Mom asked.
All of a sudden, Maxxie spoke up, sounding pissed off. "What're you looking at me like that for? It's not my fault he's fucking anaemic"
I looked round and saw Mom glaring at him. "Don't talk to me like that"
I sighed. Here comes the battle.
"This is my apartment, I'll speak to you how I want"
"You need to learn some manners, young man"
"Oh yeah. Like you know all about those" he sort of glared back at her.
Mom kept up her glare. "And what's that supposed to mean?" she asked, putting her hand on her hip.
"The way you've been treating me isn't exactly what anyone would call polite"
"I've been treating you exactly as you deserve"
"You gotta give a little to get a little. You be polite to me, I'll be polite to you. You keep treating me like shit, and it'll be a fucking miracle if I don't treat you the same"
"Give me one good reason why I should be polite to you"
Maxxie smiled slightly. "It'll be the only thing that keeps you welcome in my apartment at this rate"
Mom smirked a little. "You can't stop me seeing my son"
"I never said that. I said you wouldn't be welcome here anymore, not that I would stop you from seeing each other"
"Hadley lives here too, I think he has a say in this"
"Be nice to each other and I'll give you a fucking key" I lied, already irritated.
Maxxie gritted his teeth. "I've tried being nice, and look where it's gotten me"
"At what point were you ever being nice?" Mom spat.
"I've been civil with you right up until every time I can't take anymore of how you're being towards me. I've tried to be understanding and sympathetic, but all I get is glares and arguments!"
"Everybody just needs to calm down" I said, too pissed off at the fact that the two of them couldn’t seem to be in the same room.
Maxxie clenched his jaw, trying to relax. He was kind of failing but at least he wasn’t glaring at Mom anymore. Mom just looked unimpressed, her hand still on her hip.
"Now, Mom, we're going to do this nicely. Why are you such a bitch to Maxxie?"
She turned to Maxxie. “Because you st-"
"Don't tell him, tell me"
"He stole you away from me"
A muscle twitched in Maxxie’s jaw.
"Hadley why are you in such a rush to grow up?" Mom asked.
"You're nineteen. You're s'posed to be living at home still. Or off in some other State at college. You're supposed to be upset over splitting up with your girlfriend, not sitting there with a ring on your finger"
Maxxie squeezed my hand a little, starting to calm down.
"If it wasn't for him you'd still be my little boy" Mom said, crying a tiny bit.
"Go hug her already" Maxxie whispered in my ear.
I struggled off the couch in a similar fashion to how Ava would have to in a few months time and shuffled over to Mom, wrapping her in a hug. The waterworks came on full blast at that and she hugged back kind of tight.
"Ow" I said quietly but she didn’t seem to notice.
Maxxie stayed where he was on the couch while Mom half hugged half mauled me for about fifteen minutes. She eventually pulled back a little and sniffled.
"I want my little boy back"
Maxxie was quiet and I didn’t really know what to say. I mean, sure I was still her little boy but I was a grown up as well. Maxxie stood up and sort of pulled on the shirt he’d been struggling with before.
"I'm gonna leave you guys to it for a bit" he turned to Mom, "sorry I yelled"
"Sorry for being... For being such a bitch" Mom said as he tried to leave and he smiled a little.
"It's okay. Like I've said before, I understand"
Mom smiled back and I said quietly again "Ow"
"Be gentle with him" Maxxie said and left.
Mom sniffled again. “C’mon, let’s go to the mall”
Oh God, not the mall. Maxxie, don’t leave me with this.