I watched Pia pull out of my driveway before turning to head back into the house with my feet barely able to stand the cold cement. My dad sat laid out on the living room couch with his Marine hat on his chest as he stared tiredly at me. Shoes were off and his feet were already up so I knew he was going to stay for the rest of the morning before heading back home.
“You need a blanket or pillow?” I asked, picking up Violet’s toys to toss in the corner bin before plopping down on the couch across from him with a yawn.
“You know being in the military, you can sleep anywhere,” he said with his eyes concentrating on me. “Move slow with that girl Homer before you overwhelm her.”
“I didn’t ask you---”
“I know I’m not yo mama so you ain’t tryna hear what I got to say---”
“No, it's nobody’s business what I do with Pia,” I corrected.
“I’m telling you, man to man? Move slow with her. Not speaking bad about her, not saying she ain’t right for you. I’m telling you because I know how you are. You probably gonna go jump and buy a damn ring and propose to that girl next weekend.”
I didn’t say anything only because it was half true. I already bought the ring. I just needed to get it sized.
“Listen when somebody is talking to you, and tryna tell you something. That girl is fragile. Any little thing will set her running for good so you need to go slow.”
“I don’t want to do this long distance shit,” I muttered with my eyes closed as my knees swayed back and forth. “I’m not doing this again---”
“If you do what you’re supposed to do as a man, you won’t have to for much longer. Do your job as a man to make a life for this woman and everything will fall into place.”
“I did that for Nasia---”
“She wasn’t no woman to begin with and you weren’t a man for dealing with her. I like Pia but she ain’t ready for what you’re offering yet and neither are you.”
I didn’t want to hear that. Last thing I wanted to hear and if I could just put him out my house I would but I just sat still, staring at the ceiling feigning ignorance.
“Do what you need to do to make her feel at ease with you. Step up and prove that you can be a husband and she will show you she can be a wife. I did it with your mother. Twice. Once when I was trying to get her and a second time when I was trying to keep and save my marriage. I told Michael a while back when he started dating that girl and realized he wanted to be with her. I said every time you get in the bed with that girl, turn the clock face down so you don’t put a time limit on yall relationship. Next time Pia comes over, turn the clock down and get to it.”
I smirked, looking over at my Dad who closed his eyes.
“Get to it?” I repeated with a laugh, “why you tryna sound like you bout that life?”
Kenneth Skye opened his eyes to look over at me with his brows arched.
“Nigga I wore yo mama out----”
“Ahhhh! I’on wanna know!” I yelled, getting up from the couch.
“Pushing baby after baby out! I kept her on her back night after night and you----”
“Aight! Lock the door on yo way out!” I yelled towards my room. I could still hear him talking himself back to sleep.
“Am I about that life, nigga the only reason you got life is because I’m about it. Shit…”