“So Mr. Talbot what would you like to talk about today? The therapist asked looking across the gap between their two overstuffed chair.
“I do not wish to talk I wish to find answers.” Max said maintaining his pouty state. Yes, it had been his idea for them to enter therapy but he was pretty sure he didn’t need it.
“Answers about what?” the therapist asked making Max simmer with annoyance.
“Why will my wife not say she’s my wife? Why can we not just be normal happy people? Why can we not just be happy?” he said slowly relaxing a bit. It was obvious max was a much easier nut to crack than Mal.
“That’s why we’re here. Everyone needs to deal with their personal issues before they can be in a successful relationship. Let’s start with Mal though. You are in love it is clear. She accepts the best and worst in you and you her. She says you knew she never wanted to be married yet you and I’ll quote her here ‘tricked her’ into it.” The therapist said looking back at his notes. “If you knew this about the woman you love why would you do it?”
“Ah you see Mal lies, well she doesn’t lie but she doesn’t always know what she wants. She wants everything marriage is a home, to be a wife but without the documents that say so. What she does not understand is the legality of the situation. I am a Canadian citizen and she US. We would have no legal right and if something were to happen to me she would not have support. I know she can not give me her money when she passes but I can and plan on giving her mine. “ he explained heaving a sigh. “It happened in Vegas the week before Sarah and Tanger’s wedding.”
“The friends Mal describes as sickeningly perfect?”
“Yes they would be them. They are perfect.They’re so perfect they belong in a …” he paused looking for the right phrase in English “Doll house a Barbie, Ken home. They are my best friends though I love them and always will. I love their girls, and what they’re doing in Pittsburgh. You know Sarah is going back in school to be a practitioner in addition to being a Mom to the three girls they adopted? Kris is just on fire in the league. He was barely drafted but look at home now? They are just amazing people.”
“Back to you and Mal…” the therapist encouraged.
“Oh yes, it was the week before their wedding and we were taking a short trip to Vegas. It had been a long summer. We went to Haiti and Mal had loved it though she had to be forced into it she ended up loving it. Then there was free agency and my choice to go here to Philly. It was a hard choice but my agent encouraged it. I like it here but I do not like how many people I hurt and let down. So their wedding was three weeks before training camps. We went the week before the wedding week to Vegas. It was so we could be back to help. Mal was helping Sarah and I was doing my best to get things set in Philly and keep things sane for Kris. There is nothing like a woman planning a wedding even as laid back as Sarah is I think I saw her angry for the first time ever that week.”
The therapist gave Max a pointed look encouraging him to get back on topic.
“So Mal and I went to Vegas. We had a great time, lots of dancing some gambling, she’s quite good at poker. So much so we were always getting free drinks. It was one of these nights where she was up by a few thousand and I was down by a few so we were really drinking. Between the drinks and finishing up our anti-malaria medicine I just asked her. I’ve had the ring a long time since before our time apart. She’s the only girl I ever want to be with again. So she laughed and said yes and then the casino hotel offered to make the arrangements for a small ceremony. She said ‘yeah sure’ in her drunk state. I think they just not wanted to pay her and provide service than give her the money. So we stood me in a dress shirt and slacks, Mal in a blue dress that made her look just…” he closed his eyes imagining. “She looked so beautiful. If it had been planned by her I think she would have picked a similar dress with even months to plan. So there we were saying slightly tipsy vowels in Vegas. We signed the papers and went back to he drinks and you know the wedding night stuff.” He said wiggling his eyebrows.
“So you didn’t intentionally get her drunk to marry her?” the therapist asked.
“No, she won’t believe me but I did not intend for it at all. I am happy it happened though. I just sent all out paper work in for our marriage to stand in Canada as well. She says she loves me and will not divorce me but is still not happy with being married.” He shrugged. “I don’t know what I can do to make her feel better with it.”
The therapist sighed and brought his hand to his chin in thought. “I think it will just take time. Mallory has so many walls around her heart the concept of marriage is a lot for to handle. Being in love and having it reciprocated was hard enough for her but this legal binding symbol of love is harder. I know you’re a good man and she is a good woman. I believe with time you’ll figure it all out. You just have to remember that for her the idea of having your heart is a big responsibility and one she was bot looking to accept. Now with it being legal there are laws that say doesn’t have an easy out. She has had an escape route for everything all her life and is struggling with not having one now. She knows she doesn’t want to have one but it’s hard to blindly enter into something not knowing how or when it will it and now.” The therapist explained as he scribbled notes in their file. “I really think you won’t be with me much longer. You’re strong personalities who I can tell will find a way to make this work.”
Max entered the condo taking his shoes off bound for the kitchen where the smells and sounds of food cooking were coming from. It was a off day and as always Mal was making dinner for him.
“What’s for dinner?” he asked kissing her on the cheek before sitting down in his usual spot on the counter where he liked to watch her cook from.
“Steak stir fry and jasmine rice.” She said moving to stand between his knees giving him a quick kiss. “I got you something today.” She said reaching around him to where her hand bag sat on the counter. She fished out a small box handing it to him. “I just thought you should have one too.”
He looked at the little wrapped box skeptically and then to her raising an eyebrow. Mal nodded her encouragement and he pressed on taking the fancy lid off taking out the velvet box. “Really?” he asked not opening the box yet not taking his eyes off of it.
She rested her hands on his legs. “I said I’m not going to leave or change our status. I figure all the girls in their fuck me pumps should know if they try to fuck you I’ll stab them in the eye with my own fuck me pumps.” She shrugged opening the box for him to reveal the rather plain platinum band till she showed him the etching on the inside. “À cœur vaillant rien d'impossible.” She said softly. “I have it in mine too.
“With a willing heart all things are possible. That is how it is best said in English. With a vaillant heart nothing is impossible.” He repeated in a more direct translation. “I think it’s wonderful.”
Mal slipped it on his finger with a perfect fit. “So no slutting it up ok?’ she joked leaning in for a kiss. “I mean you not the girls. They can slut it up for the rest of the boys.”
Max held her close bring his legs around her not letting her move. “I love you and you are right nothing is impossible for us.”
She let her smile fade figuring there was no better time to tell him. “I’m glad you say that because things are about to change.” She cleared her throat.
His brows knit and he opened his month to say something only to have her cover it with her hand. He smiled licking her hand bringing a glare from her.
“Ok asshole lick me again and I kill you; which would be a shame since I think you’ll be a great Dad… because I’m pregnant.”