The Pellegrine

Soul Lark

A Brother’s Secret

Chapter 8
Meeting the Mother

© The author reserves all rights to this work.


This story is of an adult nature. It is not intended for minors nor for those whose law in their land forbids them to read this material.
This story is entirely fictional. Any resemblance to actual people is purely coincidental and unintentional.

NB: Words found between asterisks (*) refer to words exchanged in psychic or telepathic communication.

Date: 3 June 2675, Thursday

Geraldine came home early. Normally, she would return home at about 1700 hours. Then she had enough time to prepare dinner and then take a shower before sitting down for dinner.

This particular afternoon, she returned home at 1500 hours. She decided that she needed to talk to her son regarding a strange call she received. She placed her case on her desk in the study and turned on her communicator.

“Jacques Robinson,” she announced.

It took a while before she heard the voice of her son.

“Hello,” she said cautiously. She had made the mistake of calling one morning when her son and partner had been in bed. She had interrupted them in their love making.

“Hi Mama,” said Jacques.

“Good afternoon, Jacques. You aren’t on visual. Have I interrupted anything again?”

“No, Mama,” laughed Jacques. “I’m actually on the road. My power cells were getting low and so I needed to conserve power. I’ll need to charge them when I reach home.”

“Oh, could you call me at my place when you reach home?”


There was a soft click and the communicator went back to stand-by mode. Geraldine busied herself with some material for her lessons the following week. She tidied her desk and started tidying up the living room. When she had finished tidying up the living room, she went back into the study to see what else she could tidy up. She was wondering why Jacques had taken such a long time to call her back. Just as she was rearranging the plants in the study for the fourth time, the communicator sounded.

“Good afternoon, Robinson residence.”

“Hi Mama. Sorry I took so long. There was a moving crew in the building. It seemed a new tenant took one of the empty units. The main entrance was not very big but the movers managed to bring in all the furniture. Really, why some people go for large one piece furnishings is a mystery to me,” said Jacques.

“Well, at least I get to see your face when we’re talking.”

“All right, Mama, I get the feeling that something’s bothering you. Everyone knows that you don’t come home in the middle of the day. Spit it out,” said Jacques good-naturedly.

“Well, I received a call from Mark’s brother, Matthew, this morning,” Geraldine started. She noticed that at the mention of Matthew’s name, Jacques’ face changed somewhat. “What did you tell him about his situation? He said that he wanted to speak to me.”

Jacques seemed to have wanted to say something but he stopped. Then he said, “I just said that you were his consultant in the release from the state institution.”

“Why did he just call me? Surely he should’ve called earlier. It’s been six months since he came to Uranus. Tell me, has he gotten into any trouble?”

“Not that I know of. I hear from Mark that the school is very happy with his academic performance. His principal said that he is well-behaved.”

“I got the same report from the school. Do you know why he wanted to see me?”

“I can’t say that I know exactly.”

“Surely you must’ve a clue? You’re with Mark at work. Hasn’t he said anything to you?”

“Mark hasn’t said anything to me,” Jacques said truthfully. “Matt’s now eighteen. Perhaps it’s to do with girls. He gets what he wants to know from his brother but perhaps he needs a woman’s advice on these things. He is, after all, estranged from his mother.”

“True,” said Geraldine, her mental gears turning. “Thanks Jacques. Coming home for the weekend?”

“Yes,” replied Jacques. “Heath and I would be back for lunch on Sunday. Our next cruise starts on Monday afternoon. We start our preparations on Sunday at 1600 hours.”

Geraldine nodded. “Okay, see you then.”

“Bye Mama,” said Jacques.

“Bye,” smiled Geraldine. “Give my regards to Heath.”

“I will,” answered Jacques. A second later, the communicator went into stand-by mode.

Just then, Geraldine heard her two daughters, Lelia and Chiara come in. She went to greet them at the door.

“Mama!” exclaimed Chiara. “You’re home early.”

“Finished my work early,” Geraldine replied.

“You’re lucky,” groaned Chiara. “Mrs. Potterton gave me extra homework today!”

“Why was that?” asked Geraldine.

Chiara blushed. “Must I tell you?”

“Yes,” Geraldine said firmly. “I’m sure that it’s not very serious because I’d heard from your principal by now if it were.”

“Oh all right!” said Chiara resignedly. “Yvonne brought something to school today. She said it was part of an ancient artifact. I didn’t believe her and had a little argument.”

Geraldine raised her eyebrows. She looked intently at Chiara and asked, “And this happened … when?”

“During class, when Mrs. Potterton was explaining the difference between first and second degree differentials.”

“Ah! not paying attention at class,” smiled Geraldine. “You got off easy. You are good at mathematics. A few more problems won’t hurt you.”

“You call twenty more equations few?!” exclaimed Chiara.

“Well, it could have been detention,” said Geraldine.

“True,” admitted Chiara, “but she should’ve listened to our explanations.”

“Count your blessings Chiara. She didn’t put you into detention. She could’ve, you know,” said Lelia.

“Hmmph!” was the only reply Chiara gave before going into her room. Leila smiled as her sister stomped off. She was about to go to her room as well when her mother caught her attention.

“Lelia, you are in the same history class as Mark’s brother, aren’t you?” asked Geraldine when Chiara had entered her room.

“Yes,” Lelia replied, hoping that she would keep her composure. However, her mother had noticed that she was blushing a little.

“Have you talked to him?” Geraldine asked.

“Not really. He came up to me to wish me once. That was all,” replied Lelia cautiously.

“Do you know about the people he hangs out with?” Geraldine asked, seemingly oblivious to her daughter’s discomfort.

Lelia replied, “Not really. I hear that he is very bookish. He doesn’t mix around much with his classmates. He’s taking an additional 35% workload in school. I think he’s going to try for the entrance exams at the end of the year.”

“What’s he like?” Geraldine asked, reaching the main question.

“Uh?” Lelia looked surprised. “What makes you think I know what he’s like?”

Geraldine gave a slight smile. “You’re an observant person, Lelia. You’re normally accurate when you assess a person.”

Lelia was blushing quite evidently now. “I … I … I can’t tell with him.”

“What’s wrong, Lelia? You’re trembling.” asked her mother with concern.

“Mama … I … I don’t know.” Lelia stammered.

Then it dawned on Geraldine what was happening. She was a little annoyed at first. She did not like the idea of an eighteen year old being interested in her fourteen year old daughter. Fortunately, her psychologist training took over from her maternal protectiveness. “You like him don’t you,” she said to her daughter.

“Mama, I really just know him by sight,” answered Lelia, trying to avoid the matter. “I knew he was Mark’s brother but I’ve never let him know that I know. I’ve only greeted him. We exchanged a few words in class and that’s all. I’m only taking history with him. I don’t have the same classes with him except history. We don’t even eat at the same time in the canteen!” she ended in exasperation.

Geraldine realised what Lelia was trying to say and speculated what was happening. She knew she could not confirm her theories until she spoke to Matthew. However, her instincts told her that the both were attracted to each other but they were too shy to go beyond just a few phrases. Oh, the consequences of pure infatuation for the first time, Geraldine mused in her mind.

“Okay, I believe you, Lelia,” Geraldine tried to mollify her daughter. “I know you to be a responsible girl. Just remember not to let your heart rule your head too much, okay?”

“Yes, Mama,” said Lelia. She was looking visibly relieved. She saw her mother’s shooing gesture and she went immediately to her room.

§ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ §

Date: 5 June 2675, Friday

Matthew had a three o’clock appointment with Dr. Luciani. He had obtained permission to leave school early for the appointment. He was awed by the size of the university campus. He went to the main office as directed and obtained the directions to her office. A lady receptionist sat at the front of the reception lounge of the Department of Pyschological Sciences.

“Good afternoon,” Matthew said to her. “I’ve an appointment with Dr. Luciani.”

“Please have a seat. I’ll inform her that you’re here.”

Matthew sat down on a chair in the lounge. He was getting more and more nervous. He had to keep telling himself that this was the proper thing to do.

The receptionist pressed a button on her communications console and the Dr. Geraldine Luciani’s face appeared on the display.

“Yes?” the psychologist responded.

“Dr. Luciani, Matthew Keith has arrived,” informed the receptionist.

“Alright. Are any of the private rooms free?” enquired Geraldine.

The receptionist used her terminal to see the day’s scheduling. “Let me see … rooms two and three are free.”

“Show him to room two. I’ll be there presently,” replied Geraldine

With a smile, the receptionist answered, “Yes.”

The receptionist walked to Matthew and said, “Mr. Keith, please come this way.”

Matthew followed the receptionist into a very spartan room. Everything was white or made of glass. There was a glass coffee table surrounded by white couches. Matthew sat on one of them and found them neither too soft nor too uncomfortable. However, his stomach felt as if there were butterflies in them.

Geraldine was also feeling a little uncomfortable. She was nervous and yet excited. She knew that she could not stop the young people from liking each other. She hoped that the Matthew Keith she was going to meet was an improved version of the person she had in her file.

The two of them spoke for more than two hours. Matthew felt very comfortable talking to Geraldine. Matthew began by thanking Geraldine for helping him come out of the institution. He found out during the conversation that Geraldine had, in fact, gone through his whole case history. She did not just put her name down on his release papers for convenience. She was genuinely involved. She was convinced that he was well enough to stay with his brother and that he would be better of with Mark than in the institution. The state psychological consultant agreed and Geraldine had agreed to monitor Matthew’s progress.

Geraldine then started asking him questions about his life with Mark, his life in school and his social life. She was surprised to note that Matthew did not have any close friends except for his brother, Jacques and Heath. He went out with his classmates, of course, but infrequently. He had gone to the movies twice with his classmates and just a few times for lunch. He usually got home to do clean up the house and hit the books. He wanted so much to do well for his degree entrance exams.

Then Geraldine hit on a sensitive topic. She could see that Matthew had to gather his courage to tell her the truth. She was surprised that he was seduced by a girl at age fifteen and had recently fooled around with a guy. She had reached the conclusion that nothing abnormal had resulted from his experiences after listening more to him.

“Are you still sexually active?” Geraldine asked him.

“Well, I don’t fool around with anyone anymore, if that’s what you mean. I still masturbate once in a while,” Matthew admitted.

“Do you have a girlfriend?” she asked.

Matthew was a little hesitant but eventually answered, “No.”

“Is there someone you’re interested in?” Geraldine asked.

Matthew went a little pale and looked down. Then he looked up. Geraldine could see that he was mustering up all the courage he had. He spoke slowly and deliberately. “There’s someone I’m attracted to. It’s not sexual. It’s personal. I find her very lovely and I get this tremendously good feeling whenever I see her smile. I’ve only greeted her a few times and maybe exchanged a few lines in class but that was it. I’d thought she was older but now I found out that she’s only fourteen. It’s bugging me because I really like her but I’m afraid that other people might get the wrong idea about me.”

Geraldine looked at the pale eighteen year old talking. He was barely a man, certainly out of boyhood, but figuring out the meaning of adulthood as he matured. She decided that truth was better in this situation.

“Matt, I know who you’re talking about.”

Matthew looked up. “I’m not surprised. I’ve given you enough clues. Are you mad at me?”

“I knew before you came to see me.”

“Jacques?!” asked Matthew, slightly surprised.

“No, not Jacques, exactly. Lelia, actually.”

“Oh!” Matthew said, looking a little downheartened.

Geraldine smiled. “Why are you looking disappointed?”

“She doesn’t like me, does she?” Matthew said it more like a statement than a question.

“She didn’t tell me if she liked you.”

“But … if she told you … and you know …” said Matthew in short bursts.

“You’ve got to hear it from the horse’s mouth. Why don’t you come over to my house on Sunday from lunch and I’ll give you two a few moments alone for you to ask her.”

Matthew’s face brightened for a moment and then he sank back down.

“What’s the matter?”

“I promised Jacques that I could only meet her in school, that there’ll be no dates, that I’ve to get to know her on my own with no outside help and that I’ve got to see both Mr. Robinson and yourself.”

“Jacques said that?” said Geraldine. She was secretly pleased that Jacques was very protective of his sisters. Matthew answered her with a nod. “Bring Mark along as a family invitation and it won’t be a date or a meeting.”

Matthew shook his head, “No Dr. Luciani. My brother Mark isn’t really over Stephanie yet and it’ll be awkward for him. Furthermore, Lelia is just fourteen. Jacques was right. She’s too young. She doesn’t know much about relationships. Maybe I should wait when she grows older.”

“Matthew, what you’ve said is very noble but I don’t think you should avoid my daughter. Being her mother, I’m naturally protective of her but I think that if you were just friends I’d be okay with it.”

“What would Professor Robinson say? After all, why would an eighteen year old boy want to make friends with his fourteen year old daughter?”

“Why don’t we ask him?” Geraldine asked as she took out her communicator from her coat pocket. She stood up and went over to the door. On the wall, next to the door, was a visual console. Geraldine pressed some buttons and then she got her husband on visual link.

“Robinson here … Oh! Gerry. This is a pleasant surprise.” Then his face became worried, “This isn’t bad news I hope.”

Geraldine smiled. “No dear, I’d like you to meet Matthew, Mark’s brother.”

“Hi, Matthew.”

“Hi, Professor Robinson.”

Geraldine turned to Matthew and said, “Tell my husband what you need to tell him.”

Matthew took a swallow and said, “Professor. I was hoping that I could get your permission to get to know your daughter Lelia. I know that she’s very young and all that but I promise that we’ll just be friends.”

“So, you’re the guy who’s sweet on my little Lelia. I’ve no problems with friendship, Matthew but God help me if you hurt my little girl,” he said with a twinkle in his eye.

“Thank you sir,” Matthew replied, still in awe of the nice reception he’s had.

“Okay. I’ve got to go. See you Gerry back home. Love you.”

“Love you too,” replied Geraldine. Then she turned back to Matthew and said, “Matt, you’re a nice guy and both the professor and I have no problems with Lelia making friends with you. I’m pleased that you’ve understood the problems with the age. However, don’t let that stop you to get to know Lelia. Just call me when you need to talk. I’m a woman and I’m Lelia’s mother. You won’t get another better perspective on Lelia than me.”

“Thanks Dr. Luciani.”

“It’s already past 1730. You’d better head on home. Just remember, call if you need to talk, and when we’re outside this university, call me Geraldine or Mrs. Robinson, whichever you prefer.”

“Thanks,” said a smiley Matthew.

“Okay, young man, scoot!” Geraldine said with a laugh.

Matthew went home feeling that it was a wonderful end to a wonderful day.

End of Book VIII

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