Grandma gave Jane her compress and she sat at the table, holding it against the bruise on the side of her head.
After Grandma treated Bruce’s eye. Bruce got up.
“Listen, I gotta head home. I just called my dad, and he is thoroughly POed! A real monster of a tongue-lashing awaits me, and I’d like to go ahead and get it over with,” Bruce explained.
“Well hang on and let me get my keys. I’ll take you home in my truck,” Grandma offered.
“Thanks, Mrs. Bennett,”
“Jane, you stay here with Olivia and the baby while I run Bruce home,” Grandma ordered.
Bruce kissed Jane on the cheek.
“I’ll see you at school in the morning,” he softly told her.
A Mother’s Concern
Later that night, Brielle arrived from work. When she caught sight of Jane sitting in the kitchen with Grandma, a stern look slowly crept across her face.
“I got your text this afternoon,” Brielle told her in a firm voice, “Do you mind telling me why you chose to go to the park with some boy instead of taking the bus home from school?”
“Mom, I didn’t think it would be a big deal as long as I told you where I was,” Jane replied, “I was honest, wasn’t I?”
“That’s not all that happened,” Grandma added, “Look the side of her face.”
“What?” Brielle shouted. She saw the bruise as she stood over Jane, placing her hands on her hips.
“Please tell me you didn’t get into another brawl…and on the first day of school!” Brielle said, raising her voice.
“Gee thanks, Grandma B! Couldn’t you’ve just let me break it to her?” Jane cried.
“Would you have told her, Jane?”
“Keep your voice down,” Brielle scolded.
Jane turned back to her mother.
Brielle’s Dismay and Bruce’s Bruised Pride
“Mom, look. There were eight creeps against the two of us and they were getting ready to jump us! You should’ve seen Bruce and what they did to him! We didn’t have any choice but to fight!” she cried.
“It’s not the fighting I’m angry at! Defend yourself if you have to! But it’s the fact that you went traipsing off to the park with some boy when you should’ve gotten your butt on that school bus and came home like you were supposed to!” Brielle chided.
“But Mom- “
Brielle put her hand up.
“Let’s just can it for tonight. I’ve had a long day, I’m tired, and I’m ready to go home and go to bed. We’ll resume this discussion in the morning,” she told her.
When Jane returned to school the next day, she saw Bruce sitting in the library and joined him.
“Hey, what’s up?” Jane greeted.
“Nothing,” Bruce said in a cold tone.
Jane noticed that he was distant and avoided eye contact with her. She gasped in indignance.
“’Something wrong?” she asked in a huff.
“I don’t wanna talk about it right now,” Bruce answered hotly as he got up and walked away.
Jane stood up and watched him go, shocked at the change of attitude. Her eyes then narrowed, brows furrowed, and lips thinned.
“Well, who the hell pissed in your cheerios!” She shouted.