Driving Home from the Baby Shower

"Charis, did you know that Harold just got out of rehab two years ago?" I ask.

"Peter!" It’s Mom, grumbling awake.

My girlfriend, driving, answers meekly, "I didn’t."

"But you could see it in his eyes," I say, turning off the radio.

"What could that ever mean?" Mom says.

Adds Maybelle, in antistrophe, "Yes, what’s that about?"

"You guys know what I’m talking about. That look that people get, after they’ve been through rehab, where their eyes are just too clear."

Maybelle is silent.

"And the way he was talking," I continue. "It was just too organized, like he was presiding over a ceremony or something. I mean, it wasn’t like Harold."

"Well, I don’t know," says Mom.

I go, "But I know you do and you just don’t want to say it. Because of course he’s going to be a great father, right?"

"I thought it was nice to meet him. And if he’s done rehab, then that’s good and he ought to be proud of it," Charis says.

I motion for Charis to turn on our street. "This is your left."