Erica cried again at ten past eleven. Homer cried at half past twelve. Lisa pulled herself away from the bed - where she was watching a late night movie in her dressing gown - and got them to settle again. At quarter to one, she got into bed and turned the TV off.
She didn't intend on falling asleep; she would just lie there until she heard Nelson coming home. But she dozed off around one, and when she opened her eyes again, to the sound of babies crying, there was light streaming in past the curtains.
Lisa stumbled out of bed to tend to the babies, glancing at the clock on her way; it was half past ten. Sorrow welled inside her. Nelson had stayed out all night, after he'd said he wouldn't.
Pushing him out of her head, Lisa brought Erica and Homer downstairs to feed them.
She optimistically checked the phone, in case Nelson had tried to call while she was asleep, but she had no missed calls. But there was nothing. If she hadn't had the babies there to distract her, she might have broke into tears of disappointment in her husband.
Lisa dialed her mother's number, hoping the lump in her throat would go away before somebody answered.
"Hello?" came the sleepy voice of Lisa's brother.
"Hey, Bart. What are you doing at Mom and Dad's?"
"Bit of trouble at home, Lise," Bart said in a heavy voice. "Had another fight with my roommate. He said I had to pay my rent my Thursday. I told him not to have a cow. And he took it the wrong way. So I decided to come stay here a few days til things cooled down."
Lisa smiled. "I'm sorry to hear that, Bart. Is Mom there?"
"I think she's in the shower."
"Tell her I'm going to call over around 12. And Nelson won't be coming."
Bart paused. "Is everything okay, Lise?"
"Fine. I'll see you later," Lisa shrugged as she hung up. She carried Erica and Homer back upstairs and laid them down in their cots while she had a quick shower.
Nelson, you liar, you idiot, she thought over and over.