Episode 921: Pressure“This is not happening,” Justine insisted. She rose from her seat at the table and wrung her hands. “You are not working for your grandfather.”
“I start tomorrow,” Tansy said. “I can’t just quit before I start. I made a commitment. Grandpa was very clear that if I commit-”
“I don’t care what he said. You are still a child and you do not make a commitment without our permission.”
“I start tomorrow,” Tansy repeated.
“Could you not, right now?” Justine snapped at him.
Hero’s face scrunched up like he might cry. Justine went to him, squeezed his shoulder and kissed the top of his sweet little head.
“I’m sorry,” she said. “I’m just upset.”
“Maybe now isn’t the best moment for this conversation, cooler heads prevail, right?” Her husband said.
“Pal, since you’ve gobbled up all your dessert, you could go do some more work on that puzzle in your room before bedtime,” Quent suggested to their son.
“Kay.” Hero slid off the chair, thought to give his mom’s legs a tight hug then ran off to play.
“Tans,” Justine said, fighting to keep her voice level. “We’ll talk more about this later, or in the morning maybe, I don’t know, I just need a moment and you still have homework to do, right?”
Tansy stood. “I didn’t mean to upset you so much, Mom. I knew maybe you wouldn’t love it, but I just, I thought...” She raced out of the room.
After Justine heard her daughter’s bedroom door click shut, she said, “you know, I thought it was challenging enough to navigate this question about her sexuality, but add my father into the mix? What is she thinking? It’s not as if I’ve hidden his manipulations from her. What has she done inviting him into her life? I never should have okayed her sending that Christmas card. It obviously kicked the door open.”
“So we slam it shut,” Quentin said. “We tell her she can’t work for him, help her find something else to do if like you said, this is about avoiding dealing with the animal shelter, we stick with what we agreed to do on that, let her avoid until it becomes an unavoidable problem, for now, if she’s not ready, she’s not ready, we don’t push her, we give her time. But we can and we should push on the issue of your dad. Just now Tansy was clearly sorry she upset you, her attitude was a lot less insistent than it had been minutes before. We talk to her calmly, we rationally explain our concerns about him, and I think she’ll let this go.”
“I think so, too. She’s never had an interest in business before, I do think it’s about avoiding Enid and it probably wouldn’t take much to convince Tansy to choose another distraction, or, in an ideal world maybe she’ll give up on avoidance and start talking. But meantime, will my dad just let this go? Has he ever just let anything go? Right now he’s probably salivating, thinking he’s got his clutches on a new mini-me. And Tans is super vulnerable right now, the last thing she needs is him pressuring her or telling her there is only one right way to live her life.”