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Theresa Chapter 51

| Jun 14, 2010
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Theresa graphicThe Story So Far (TGF subscribers can read earlier installments): Terri (Theresa) is a post-op transsexual and aspiring actress in her twenties. Her early teen years are related in Juliet (the first volume of this trilogy) and her late teen years are presented in the second volume, Barbara. She has a boyfriend (Eddie Roberts) and she’s the biological father of a daughter, Jessica. Eddie has proposed marriage and Terri has accepted his proposal. Can the course of true love run smoothly if it has to flow through Eddie’s parents?
“I have a plan,” Eddie said.

“Don’t tell me too soon and spoil all the fun,” I said. We – Eddie, Jessie, and I – were standing in the hallway outside his parents’ apartment. He had a key in his hand but seemed a bit nervous about actually using it.

He ignored me and talked to Jessie. “My mom and dad always watch the six o’clock news in the living room,” he said. “We’re going to sneak into the kitchen and then we’ll go into the living room and surprise them. When we think they’re surprised enough, we’ll call your mommy in to join us and surprise them some more. Okay?”

“Okay!” Jessie said happily. “Are we going in now?”

“Yes, and we have to be very quiet so we don’t spoil the surprise. Here we go!” He slid the key into the lock and opened the door and Jessie and I hurried into the apartment behind him. After closing the door quietly behind us, I followed them into the kitchen, where I found three speechless people – Eddie, Jessie, and Eddie’s mother.

Eddie recovered his command of the English language first. “Uh…what are you doing here?”

“I live here, dear.”

“No – I mean what are you doing in the kitchen? I thought you’d be watching the news with Dad.”

“I am. It’s just a commercial break now, so I came out here to check the oven. Do I know your friends?”

“Yes. This is Theresa Sayers – Terri – and her daughter Jessie. You’ve known the Sayers forever.”

“She’s one of Harry and Laura’s daughters?” I could see her mentally running through the list without coming up with a Theresa.

I hoped Eddie wouldn’t remind his mother that she’d met me right here in this apartment on New Year’s Eve. “You met her right here, last New Year’s Eve,” he said. She looked as if she’d been trying to suppress the memory, but now it had come back in all its mind-boggling glory.

She looked at Jessie as if trying to think of what she could say without traumatizing this poor innocent child. “Oh, ah, yes,” she said. “That Theresa. It’s, ah, nice to see you again.”

Mr. Roberts’ voice called from the living room. “Are you coming back, Dora? What’s keeping you?”

Eddie put his finger across his lips. “I, ah, had to do something with the casserole!” his mother called. “I’ll be right with you!” She took a can of beer from the refrigerator. “He really wants this,” she said, waving the can. “Are you going to talk to him?”

“That’s my plan,” Eddie said. “Jessie and I will visit with you and Dad for a few minutes and if all goes well, Terri will join us.” He picked Jessie up and marched off behind his mother. I followed along a few paces behind the others, stopping just outside the living room where I could hear everything without being seen.

***

“Hi, Dad,” Eddie said cheerfully.

“Eddie! I didn’t know you were back in town.”

“I haven’t been back very long.”

“And who is this charming young lady?”

“This is Jessie Sayers.”

“Harry and Laura’s granddaughter,” Mrs. Roberts said.

“Who’s her mother, then?”

“Their second daughter,” Eddie replied.

“One of the twins? Say, weren’t you dating one of them a few years ago? Is Jessie your…?”

“No, Dad. Not yet, anyway. Amy and Alice are their third and fourth daughters now. Jessie is Terri’s little girl.”

“Terri? Who’s Terri? You don’t mean that – that –?”

“Watch your tongue, dear,” Mrs. Roberts said. “Little pitchers have big ears. Yes, Terri’s the young person who was here with Eddie on New Year’s Eve.”

“Why do people keep saying I’m a little picture?” Jessie asked. “And I don’t have big ears – they’re just right!”

“There’s something you both should know,” Eddie said. “I love Terri. I love her with all my heart. I really do. I finally realized that I’ve been in love with her for several years now, so I’ve asked her to marry me and she’s said she would and we’re going to be married as soon as we can make the arrangements.”

“You must be joking!” Mr. Roberts said.

“Not at all. Terri and I both want you and Mom to come to our wedding. I hope you’ll be my best man.”

“Now listen here, young man! I’m not…”

“No! You listen to me, Dad! I’ve heard you and Mom say at least a million times how much you want to have grandchildren. Well, as we all know, I’m the only person on Earth who can give them to you. If you reject Terri and me, that’s it! You’ll never see our children.”

“That’s blackmail!”

“I suppose it is.” Eddie said nonchalantly. “Well, if you want grandchildren, you’ll have to take their parents, too. Look at Jessie here. She could be your first grandchild, in just a few months. But if you want her, her mother comes with her.”

“Her mother? Eddie, you know damn well –”

“Henry Roberts! You be quiet before you say something you really shouldn’t!” Mrs. Roberts said. “Eddie, I’m coming to your wedding. I’ll do my best to bring Mr. Grouchy here with me, but if he won’t come, I’ll be there without him. Terri! I think it’s time for you to join us, so we can get better acquainted with our daughter-in-law-to-be.”

I stepped into the living room. Mr. Roberts had the look of a man who’d just lost a war. Mrs. Roberts flashed a friendly smile at me. “Let’s let Eddie and his father catch up with each other while you and Jessie and I go out to the kitchen and see what we can find that Jessie might like. Then we’ll straighten out the boys.”

“Ice cream!” Jessie said. “I love ice cream.”

Mrs. Roberts opened the oven door. “My casserole’s a lost cause,” she said. “Besides, this is an evening that deserves something better than leftovers. I’ll get Jessie some ice cream, and then you and I can decide what to order from the Chinese carry-out.”

***

Over “chef’s extra-special kung fu kung pao” shrimp and beer, we settled on a late May wedding. We’d have to check dates with our prospective wedding party members, but it looked as if we were far enough in the future to have a reasonable chance of getting everyone before they made other plans. After a brief show of grumpiness, Mr. Roberts got out his long-range planner and penciled in a hold on the last two weekends in May.

***

“I’ve got the wedding party down to fourteen,” I said, “and that’s as low as I can get it.”

“What do you mean, you’ve got it down to fourteen?” Eddie said. “The last time you gave me a number, it was twelve.”

“That was two weeks ago, Eddie. After that, it went way up to twenty-one. That was the six bridesmaids version. Since then, I’ve hacked it back down to 14, but I don’t see how we can get it any lower.”

Eddie plopped himself down beside me on the sofa. “Let’s see who you’ve got,” he said. “Did I make the cut?”

“Let me see. Oh, my gosh! Fifteen!”

“That’s okay. You go ahead without me, and I’ll meet you in Hawaii.”

What a sad thought. I allowed a couple of tears to trickle down my cheeks. “Do you really mean that?” I asked.

“Well…no. Just squeeze me in somehow.” He put his arms around me and kissed my tears away.

“We could elope, like Barbara and Doug did.”

“That’s a tempting thought…but look, we’ve got all these females looking to be bridesmaids, and we’ve got mothers of brides and grooms, and flower girls. Jessie would disinherit us if we eloped.”

“I suppose you’re right,” I said. “That’s why I’m marrying you. You always think these things through so clearly.”

“Clearly? You aren’t talking to me, are you? Have you got another bridegroom hiding behind the sofa?”

“I can’t keep anything from you, can I? But I just had a thought! If I cross him off my list, I can get the wedding party back down to fourteen.”

“Seriously, now – who’s on this wedding party list?” Eddie asked.

“Our mothers, for starters. They’ll be the last guests to be seated before the wedding procession begins.”

“Okay.”

“Your dad, if he doesn’t change his mind about being your best man. My dad – he’ll escort me down the aisle so he can raffle me off to the highest bidder.”

“He won’t just give you away, then? I’d better make sure I have a couple of dollars in my pocket. Okay, that’s four so far.”

“Chris will be my maid of honor.”

“Five. My dad will really enjoy escorting her. Give me a picture of her so I can wave it at him if he says anything more about backing out.”

“Three bridesmaids.”

“Your sisters, I’ll bet. Well, we can’t make any cuts there. That’s eight, and we’ll need three ushers to balance the bridesmaids. Do I have that many friends? Okay, we’re up to eleven. Who else?”

“Jessie, our peerless flower girl.”

“Twelve. That’s everyone, isn’t it?”

“Everyone but the bride and groom, you dummy!”

He patted me on the head. “I knew that – I just wanted to see if you were going to sneak that extra groom back in. Fourteen it is!”

***

With the bridal party finally under control, I was able to talk with all its proposed members. Everyone – everyone! – was available for a wedding on Saturday, May 25th. Not just a wedding – our wedding!

***

“Theresa Sayers!” Mother said, her dulcet tones rattling every window in the apartment. “What is this piece of paper you just gave me?”

I don’t know why she had to speak so loudly, when she had the ability to deliver a whisper that could be heard perfectly well in the uppermost balcony. “It’s my guest list, Mother!”

“For your wedding or for my funeral after I die of a stroke when I get the bills for this extravaganza?”

That was a rhetorical question, of course. I wandered into the living room to save damage to the windows. “You have fourteen in the wedding party plus twelve spouses, children, and fiancés.”

“Four of them are your children and four more are your grandchildren,” I observed.

“I don’t have a problem with the wedding party,” she said, “but you and Eddie have 45 more names.”

“Those are all mine,” I said. “Eddie hasn’t given me his list yet, but he says it will probably be about ten.”

“I knew there was something I liked about that boy. Can you cut your list back to twenty – or possibly even to ten?”

“Don’t forget, you’re marrying off three daughters – Juliet, Barbara the Second, and Theresa – in one wedding. There must be enormous cost savings there.”

“Let’s talk about this later, when I’m not sober.” That was fine with me.

To Be Continued


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Category: Fiction

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About the Author ()

Angela Gardner is a founding member of The Renaissance Transgender Association, Inc., the former editor of that organization's newsletter and magazine, Transgender Community News. She wrote the Diva of Dish column for TGF in the late 1990s and was the Editor of LadyLike magazine until its untimely demise. She is currently the Editor of TGF. She has appeared in film and television shows portraying TG characters, as well as representing Renaissance on numerous talk shows. In her idle hours she keeps busy producing her monthly TG parties, Angela's Laptop Lounge.

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