Episode 1136: Fathers and DaughtersHope blinked furiously, trying to think fast, needing to cover up for what she’d just blurted out. “I mean not that you’d be concerned about me, you shouldn’t be, you don’t even know me. Just that well you don’t really know about being a concerned parent since you aren’t one or at least I don’t think you are, so you can’t really say you’d be better at it than they are.”
It sounded weak to her own ears but it was the best she could come up with on the spot. She shouldn’t have lost her cool like that, taken it so personally when he’d questioned her parents since that comment hadn’t been personal for him, it had just been basic worry for a kid’s safety.
“You could sort of get some parenting experience though,” Hope hurried along, desperate to pivot the conversation. “I mean you wouldn’t be parenting me.”
She cringed, feeling like she was just making matters worse except he didn’t know who she was to him so he wasn’t hearing any of this the way she was so she just needed to stop panic speaking and act normal.
“It would give you the experience of having a kid around, like a preview of what it might be like to have a kid. I mean if you ever decide to do that. I just, I won’t be as much trouble as an actual kid because I’ll be helpful doing odd jobs, mowing the lawn, cleaning out your junk drawer, whatever you need. That’s why I’m here, that’s why I’ve been stopping at all kinds of people’s houses.” Though really it was just his. “I want to have a summer job, be like, what’s it called, an entrepreneur?”
Paul slowly nodded. He didn’t say anything for a long while. He ate another brownie. Hope did, too.
“So, um,” she said after licking chocolate from her fingertips which she knew was gross especially when you had a napkin right in front of you but it just tasted so good and well, she was too nervous to fully mind her manners.
“What do you think? Could you use someone helping around here for the summer?”
Paul pinched the bridge of his nose before looking at Hope again. “I don’t know what to do here. I’d like to say sure, hang out here all summer, I really would, but-”
“I’m a hard worker. I-”
“You’re my daughter. You know that. That’s why you’re here. That’s what that outburst was about. I’m not an idiot, Hope. I bet mine is the only house you stopped at for this supposed summer job that I’m guessing your parents don’t know anything about, that your dad would never be good with, so what am I supposed to do with this, just let you come by behind their backs?”