Once Mom had calmed down enough to stop crying over my engagement ring, she sat back in her chair and asked me about Maxxie’s parents again. Thankfully she asked about his mom first.
“She’s nice. Neurotic and a total pushover, but nice. I think she liked me til I said yes”
“I want more detail than that, Hadley”
“When his dad kicked him out for being gay, she just went along with it because she was in shock and agreed at the time. They didn’t speak for seven years and they’re only in contact now because of Cayden. And even though Maxxie’s still totally unwilling, she’s practically tripping over herself trying to be nice and make it up to him”
“What about his dad?”
I frowned a little bit. “Maxxie doesn’t really talk about him but the one time I met him, he was ready to beat up his own son”
Mom frowned. “Why would anyone want to hurt their child?”
I shrugged. “That’s just the sort of person he is, I guess”
“Well all I can say is even if his mum wanted to come; she’d have a hard time getting past me. Especially if she brought her husband with her. I assume they’re married?” she asked and I nodded. “Well, don’t you boys worry about a thing. Family might not be important to his parents but it is to me”
I won’t mention how you’re treating Cayden, then...
We walked into the apartment to the smell of Maxxie cooking something. Mom headed for the kitchen while I went for the couch, easing myself onto it once I’d shuffled my way over.
"What are you making?" Mom asked Maxxie.
"Need a hand?"
"No, I'm good, thanks" he smiled, shoving it in the oven.
Mom sat down and Maxxie took his rightful place next to me on the couch. I took his hand and he squeezed a little, smiling.
"Hopefully it won't go the same way as the lasagne did" he chuckled and I giggled.
"Anyways, you guys have fun wherever you went?"
"Mom cried a lot"
“Did not" Mom said quickly,
"Oh?" Maxxie asked.
"Okay, so I may have gotten a little emotional"
"A little? You cried over my ring"
"What's wrong with it?" Maxxie asked, a little bemused.
Mom smiled. "There's nothing wrong with it"
"...Then why were you crying over it?" Maxxie asked, still sounding confused.
Mom laughed a little. "It's just what mothers do when their kids get engaged"
"Oh" he smiled slightly and I huggled him.
"Mom, wasn't there something you wanted to ask Maxxie?"
Maxxie arched his eyebrow a tiny bit and Mom sort of rushed out "Oh, well, it's nothing really. I was just going to ask if I could help out with the arrangements and stuff"
"Um, well... if Hadley's okay with it" he said and I nodded a little."Then sure. One condition." Mom looked at him curiously."You don't take over" Maxxie said, smiling slightly.
Mom smiled back. "Wouldn't dream of it. I nearly had five heart attacks planning my wedding, this one's all yours"
"One other condition. I'm not wearing that suit you made me try on" I said, thinking back to what had happened not long before we left the mall.
"It suited you"
"Mom, it was white and had glitter on it"
Maxxie tried not to laugh as Mom continued.
"It looked nice"
"It was horrible. The straight side of me was begging me to please burn it"
Maxxie flashed me the puppy eyes. "Can I at least see you in it? Just once"
I stared at him and he gave me the puppy eyes even more.
"No one has to know. I won't even take a picture"
I kept staring. Why would anyone want to see that monstrosity?
He cuddled up to me a little. "Pretty please?"
"Why?" I whined.
"I just wanna see"
"Sounds cute" he giggled and I scrunched up my nose."I'll try it on too"
I giggled. "You won't want to when you see how bad it is"
"If you try it on for me, I'll try it on for you"
I smiled. "I'll think about it"
He pecked me on the cheek, making me smile more, and got up to go deal with the pasta.
"Sure you don't need a hand?" Mom asked.
"As much as I fail in the kitchen, I think even I can handle dishing up some pasta" he laughed slightly, coming back in with three plates of pasta.
The three of us started eating and I could see on Mom’s face that there was something she wanted to say. Maxxie noticed this as well and shrugged a little.
"It could do with a little more flavour"
"I ran out of the dried bits of garden in jars" he smiled. "I'll use pasta sauce from a jar next time"
Mom laughed. "Or just buy some more herbs. I can teach you a nice sauce that doesn't involve much more than a blender and a saucepan"
"I don't have a blender"
"...How do you not have a blender?"
"Who needs a blender if they live on takeout food?"
Mom rolled her eyes. "When's your birthday?"
"May" Note to self; remember that.
"Happy early birthday, I'm buying you a blender"
Maxxie laughed slightly. "You don't have to"
"Trust me, I do"
"'Kay. I warn you. I'm not easy to teach anything"
Mom smiled. "You think it was easy teaching Ava and Cayden?"
"Probably not, but if you want an idea of how hard I am to teach stuff, you should ask Alex"
"A good friend"
I giggled a little.
"What're you laughing at?" he asked, eyeing me suspiciously.
I grinned. "Nothing"
I kissed him and he kissed back. "I still think you should tell me"
I kissed him again and Mom tried not to watch as he kissed back.
He chuckled slightly. "Sorry, Mrs S"
Mom smiled. "Don't let me stop you"
"Well you take it better than my family, I'll give you that" Maxxie cuddled me and Mom smiled at us.
Maxxie smiled back. "See? Told you I can be nice"
"Might wanna try being nice to me sometimes" I said and he pouted.
"I'm nice to you all the time. I never cooked for anyone before you came along. I think I'm exceptionally nice to you"
"By trying to poison me?"
"That pasta bake was not poison" Maxxie said, pulling an offended face.
"Well obviously, you can't poison my mom as well"
"The edible bits of that lasagne weren't poison either. And tell me, what else have I ever tried to cook?"
"Carbonara and cupcakes"
"...You can't manage cupcakes?" Mom asked in disbelief.
"...No. But I can do the carbonara fine" he grinned and she chuckled.
"I'll take your word for it"
He sort of glared at her. "I'll make it tomorrow"
"Afraid it'll have to wait til some other day, Eric's taking me out tomorrow"
"Please don't say anything else on the subject" I said and Maxxie tried not to giggle.
"Have fun, wherever you're going" he prodded me, "and don't be so mean"
My jaw dropped. "How was I mean?"
"You should be happy your parents still have a life of their own. Mine might as well be dead for all the fun they have together, and they didn't even have any other kids to keep them busy"
"I don't wanna know if they're having sex, though" I mumbled.
"You don't have to know. Just pretend they're going for a nice night out together and then go to your happy place"
"I'm not cool enough to have a happy place"
"You can share mine" he pecked me on the lips and I kissed back.
He cuddled me a little more and I cuddled back, making him hum. I played with his hair and he shut his eyes.
"Right, I better head off" Mom said after a while and Maxxie opened his eyes.
"Sorry. Probably shoulda warned you I'm almost as bad at being a host as I am at cooking"
"Don't worry about it. I'll bring that blender round when I get it and we can start talking wedding plans if you're up for it"
"Could do. Just 'cause I proposed early, doesn't mean we have to rush to get married. Well, it's up to Hadley, I don't mind either way" he smiled.
"I'm happy with whatever" I said and he grinned.