A Father and His Sons Reunited
Epilogue to A Son Born of Love, A Son Born of Hate
Jim stepped back into his father's house and found all eyes riveted on him. For a moment he almost burst out laughing at the intense, hopeful but surprised stares. Then his eyes came to rest on Blair and the laughter died out of him. He looked away toward his father and brother, well actually Blair was his brother too but he couldn't deal with that right now.
"So Mom wasn't the love of your life Dad, and I was just an accident? Is that why you hated me and Steven so much? Is that why you left us so often, to be with your real son, the son born of love rather than hate?"
William took a deep breath knowing he had to be honest but careful in how he spoke not to push Jim further away. It wasn't like that son. After you and Stevie" he turned to include his other son, "Were born I wanted you. I loved you. I wanted Naomi to come back with me, to be your, both of your mother. She declined and I felt like my life was incomplete without her. I didn't go to get away from you and Stevie. I went to get you away from me because without Naomi I wasn't a nice person. I wasn't who I should have been."
" I can agree with that" Jim said wryly. "And life certainly would have been different if she had accepted your offer." Jim said ruefully. "Dad do you know how Naomi is?"
William smiled fondly, a look Jim wasn't used to seeing on that craggy face. "She is as she always was."
* * * * * * * * *
"Jim?" Blair paused as he saw Jim tense up at his voice but he had to say what he was going to say. Jim had come back in, that had to mean he was willing to try.
"Jim I would have loved if Naomi had chosen to come here, to be your mother. I always longed for brothers. I didn't know until I was about 12 that the man who visited us and was my father had other sons. And he didn't come to spend time with me he came to be with Naomi. I was always more an afterthought. That's why I begged Naomi to bring me to meet you but she didn't want to create a bond that we would have to break when she left again. I truly thought I'd never get a chance to know my brothers. I resigned myself to being an only child without a stable home." Blair paused for a second, a micro-second and then quickly barreled on before Jim could interrupt.
"By the time I went to Rainier I resented my drop by father. I didn't want to have anything to do with him. I refused his calls, letters and visits until he stopped trying. When I met you I'd pushed that relationship to the back of my mind, almost forgotten I had a father." Blair chuckled a bit bitterly shaking his head at his own blindness. "Talk about repression, huh? After I realized who you were... Well I was so excited about the sentinel stuff I had no time to think about the brother stuff. I mean you were introducing me to a whole new way of living with lost of dangerous excitement and I'd found my holy grail. A drop by father who I didn't really know and had been more interested in my mother, paled in existence next to that."
"So I'm sorry I didn't tell you Jim but it wasn't a deliberate act to deceive or hurt you. I wasn't trying..."
"Okay Chief, okay. I believe you" Jim said holding up a hand to stop the word spillage, shaking his head in exasperation at Blair's knack to talk non-stop without taking a breath. He noted Steven's grin and William's proud look as he gazed, Jim was surpised to note at all of his sons, not just his newest and youngest.
"My head understands and believes."
Jim came over and tentatively touched Blair's shoulder. He felt Blair's tremble and he couldn't stop himself pulling the younger man in for a hug, resting his head on the wild, dark curls, closing his eyes. "It's just that it'll take longer for my heart. Family never meant loyalty or love to me Blair" Jim said looking around at his father, Steven, Sally in the doorway of the dining room and finally at Blair: his guide; his partner; now his brother in more just spirit and his friend. "Until now."
The whole atmosphere of the room lightened and it was as if joy bells played in the heavens. Smiles wreathed faces and laughter could be heard as Sally called her men to supper. Finally love had come to stay.