Exorcising the Demon

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Diana called a meeting, and now she's ruining the noodles

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Diana called a meeting, and now she's ruining the noodles.

I mean, don't get me wrong ... the soup smells incredible! But the noodles — those are going to be a problem. They are a soggy mess, and nobody digs soggy noodles.

Diana struggles with noodles. I wish she would have let me make them — I'm much better in the kitchen than she is — but she wouldn't give me that much power, would she? Fuck no. Diana likes to be in control. She needs to be in control. That's her thing: control.

Normally I'm fine with that because it makes life easier for me, but when it comes to the kitchen, I wish Diana would just get the fuck out of the way and let me take charge—especially with a meeting to conduct. Diana has other things to occupy her attention. She has to get an agenda settled and seating arranged, and it would be great if I could just run the kitchen, but Diana has the control issues, and so she cooks while also prepping for the meeting, muttering lines from talking points she has no doubt practiced until they are memorized.

In fact, she seems to have tuned me out completely (as she often does), zooming into her own head to magnify the petty concerns in her life until the are giant, daunting, all-consuming.

I'm just a fly in the wall until she needs me.

Jacen, the pet fuck.

The front door opens and I hear voices echoing through the hall. Lisa and Hannah are home at last, the wayward children returning. Which means shit is about to go down! I can tell by the determined look on Diana's face, she's about to lay into them.

It'll be fireworks for an hour at least.

Instead of exposing myself to that bullshit, I decide to slide out of the room before an argument breaks out. But instead of moving to meet Diana, I see Lisa and Hannah hurrying toward Hannah's room, their arms full of bright red bags.

"Is she pissed?" Hannah whispers when she sees me. She winces like she knows World War III is coming, so I just nod and keep walking.

I walk into the living room thinking maybe I'll get a beer, even though I wish Diana had picked up some Cranberry Milk Stout instead of the Orange Milk Stout because I'm really digging cranberry flavors this winter, and anyway, it got a better write-up on BeerReviewed.

But I'll take what I can get.

Orange Milk Stout.

In December.

As I open the beer with my keychain, I hear Diana's voice rising in the kitchen. The showdown has begun. I try to tune it out, closing my eyes and taking a sip, disappointed by the citrus hints. Wish it were cranberry. But beggars can't be choosers, right?

I eye the two huge sofas in the living room and consider taking a seat, but decide against it. I don't like the smell of leather, so I'm about to head back to my bedroom when the front door bangs open and Vince and Chester come through, hauling a sway-drunk human between them. No sign of Santos. Vince is singing some sort of Irish ballad with a voice that is surprisingly deep and rich, and I'm momentarily jealous of Chester, his designated boy toy. I've never been with a guy before, but for my first time, I want it to be Vince. He's just so handsome and manly, but in a very clean way, not all rugged mountains and hairy, like Daniel Craig. I wonder if Chester and Hannah feel bad like they're fucking James Bond.

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