Gage was in a funk of some kind. Sometimes, he wanted to say it was all Halie's fault. How she left him hanging. How he felt like he waited weeks on end to hear from her. While all along, he would forget. He didn't want to think about the future with her.
No, he was worried about Ren. Her marriage was dissolving. That husband of hers was never around. Gage even met up with Ren's daughter at the mall. Mary was in college. Of course, Mary was no help at all. She said her parents had been over for a long time. How Ren wasn't even her real mother.
"My Dad needed her. She was just somebody he knew in high school. They were never in love." She told him the truth, and it hurt to know this. He still couldn't imagine Ren in love with the guy from the soup kitchen. She deserved better, but Mary didn't want to hear it. She was distant to both of her parents now. It was like they were strangers to her.
Gage felt on the brink of a flood of emotions. At the moment, he felt for sure he was the only one who loved Ren. Maybe he loved Ren, more than she'd loved herself.
So, she'd been friends with her husband in high school. Evidently, she'd been in love once with a loser who took an overdose.
He'd dug through her old love letters about this mysterious Byron dying of an overdose. Evidently she'd been his biggest fan. She wrote songs about him. But there was her other life too. With the guy she'd married. She'd raised his child when the love of his life up and left.
He guessed Ren knew all along how it would end. Never had a child of her very own. Gage found himself being all sappy. Maybe even moody as he thought of Ren's awful life. But at least, he wasn't thinking about his own and how it would be... to get his hopes up to meet a man who probably wasn't even his real Dad.
He just wanted to be left alone.
Dean found him hugging his pillow, wallowing with emotions in bed.
"What has gotten into you?" Dean was his old robotic self as if the armor of sourness would get him through anything.
"I'm..I'm just sick ..of everything." Gage decided it was best to make it about Dean. Of course, he would be leaving soon for the Army. Gage got up and hugged Dean tight, just to let him know that he would be missed. And he would miss Dean. Perhaps, that was why he'd avoided him, too.
"I mean, I just got back." Gage burst into tears. "And..and you're leaving? You're leaving me with a houseful of kids, you know. How am I suppose to handle that, huh?" He licked his dry bottom lip and sniffed harder. Next thing he knew he was crying on Dean's shoulder.
"You're, such a big marshmallow." Dean sighed. "I dunno if you'll ever grow up." But Dean didn't push him away.
"Sorry." Gage tried to smile. He guessed it didn't matter to Dean, what sort of messed up life Ren had. Nor how Gage thought she deserved better. He probably wouldn't care who Ren might be seeing.
"Look, I'm going to write, you, when I can." Dean was even lipped.
Gage only nodded.
"You're going to be fine." Dean told him.
Gage nodded as if he would have to be.
"You'll figure this out with Halie, and..and you'll be a good Dad."
Gage couldn't help to shake his head, no. Besides, Halie was in England. He was here. Chances were he'd never hold his own baby even if she kept it. Anyway, he'd never had a dad. How could he be one when he didn't even know how?