Coasting Down Memory Lane;
“Morning, baby,” Sidney said as he kissed Riley on her forehead. He’d just stepped in the door, and much to Riley’s delight, held two cups of coffee and a little bag from Tim Hortons.
“No freaking way. There’s a Tim Hortons here?” She took the coffee that he offered her. “Did I ever tell you that I love you?”
“Once or twice,” he said with a smile. “I know how much you love your Timmies; as do I, so I figured that since we’re only here for the summer, why not indulge a little?”
“Yup,” she said, paused, took a bite of the doughnut he offered, “you are definitely the one for me.”
He laughed as they sat down in the den area. “I suppose that’s always good to know.”
“Of course it is. I just thought that I’d let you know.”
He shook his head at his girlfriend who he was so hopelessly in love with. “Oh, we’re having lunch with my parents at noon today.” He watched her stop mid-bite and tried to cover up the grin on his lips. “I just thought I’d let you know.”
“Sid, now I don’t mean to be rude or anything, but we’ve had lunch or dinner with your family for the past three weeks. Can’t we have a little time together, you know, just the two of us?” She watched confusion spread over his face just to have it replaced quickly with a loving expression.
“Yeah, of course we can. It’s just my parents barely ever see me throughout the season so when I’m home we try to spend as much time as possible together. But I can tell them we have other plans tonight, if you’d like.”
She felt bad – guilty. They spent a ton of time together over the past three weeks they’d been in Nova Scotia; Riley just didn’t want to have to face Troy again. She had called herself a coward when she had thought about avoiding Sidney’s dad. “Well… it’s just that we’re going to spend tomorrow with them because it’s Canada Day and all, so why can’t we just have today for ourselves, you know?”
“Of course, love. I’ll just tell them that we’re busy.” He picked up the phone and dialled his parents’ number. He spoke to her while he waited for them to pick up. “What did you want to do today? We could just stay here if you’d—Oh, hey, Dad.”
Riley pretended to pick at her nails while she listened to Sidney talk with his dad over the phone. She’d have to face him sooner or later. She chose later. Well, later would actually be the next day because everyone – including Riley’s brother and soon-to-be sister-in-law – was coming over to Sidney’s house for Canada Day. Again, she invited them for moral support if things got heated or awkward between her and Troy.
“They’re kind of bummed, but they understand,” Sidney said, startling Riley. “You ok?” He looked concerned and that made her feel even guiltier. He was perfect, she thought. He understood everything about her, and sometimes, she admitted, it was annoying but she loved every minute of it.
“Yeah, I’m fine,” she said quickly, too quickly.
“Don’t lie to me, Rye. What’s wrong?”
She thought about making something up but there was a look in his eye that told her to come out with the truth. She swallowed hard before speaking. “Okay. It’s just… it’s…”
“Riley,” he snapped. “Tell me.”
“Okay, okay. What’s up with your dad?”
“What are you talking about?” He put his hands on her shoulders and turned her to face him.
“Normally we get along great, but ever since we got here he’s been distant and cold towards me. Did I do something to offend him?”
“This is been bothering you for the past few weeks?” At her confused look he smiled. “Hun, I can tell when something big is on your mind. You’ve been careful about not showing it but I can see it in your eyes.” He grabbed a hold of her hands and held them tightly in his. She felt safe with him, so she opened up.
“Yes, that’s what’s been bothering me. Normally, he’s all like ‘Oh hey, Rye, how’s it going?’ Where now he just stares at me, and it’s kind of creepy,” she said and pinched the bridge of her nose to relieve some of the pressure that was building in her head.
“I’ll talk to him about it, but I really think that you should. Straighten it out with him.” He kissed her lightly on the lips.
The next day Riley was sitting in the den checking her emails before everyone was set to come over. She had one from Ben confirming that they were on their way to Nova Scotia, one from her mom just asking how everything was, and one from Brett. She had told him about the whole Troy issue and he wrote back some advice for her.
I guess everything isn't all smooth sailing out there. I understand completely how you feel and what you’re going through – I’ve dealt with something similar to that in some of my past relationships. All I can tell you is that you have to talk to him. Approach him and say, “Okay, Mr. C, what’s your deal? You don’t like me? Too bad, because I don’t really give a rat’s caboose; I love your son and that is not going to change any time soon.”
You see where I’m going with this, Rye? You need to toughen up, girl. I know you are the whole goody-goody kind of girl but, come on, speak up. From what you’ve told me, he wants you to be intimidated by him, that’s why he’s acting that was he is right now. If you’d only stand up to him and show him that you are not going to put up with any of this, then maybe he’d have a little more respect for you.
But I don’t think that he doesn’t like you. What’s not to like? You’re a smart, independent girl who’s got her head on straight. If he didn’t like you he’d come out and say it. Think about it, would a father that protective of his son really let him date a girl who was no good? No. I think he just doesn’t understand you, and maybe, just maybe, he’s a little intimidated by you.
Yes, he knows you from before, but, Hun, people change. He still may only know you as the girl Sidney dated when he was sixteen. You’re not seventeen anymore, you’re a grown woman who is quite capable of taking control of a situation when things aren’t going the right way. He also knows that you’re capable of breaking his son. Face it; Sidney is so ridiculously in love with you that you’ve become his everything. I’ve seen it in his eyes and the way he is around you. He needs you, and maybe Troy fears that if you were to leave Sidney for some strange reason, his son may fall apart.
So, all in all, just go talk to him. You need to know how he feels and he needs to know how you feel.
Let me know how everything goes.
Taking a deep breath, Riley closed her laptop and made her way out to the front lawn to join Sidney in welcoming everyone. She was finally going to stand up to Troy.