Jon went into Robbie’s suite and Stephen brought out wine, Jack and Coke and beer. They sat in the living room next to the open door to the balcony, Robbie came out of the bedroom with a file folder. He handed Jon the folder.
“Lexie had me print these out for her. She’s really mad and upset, she’s sort of stuck between a rock and a hard pace. Thomas is a stickler about his clients.” Robbie told Jon as he sat watching Jon flip through the photos.
Jon was listening to Robbie, but the photos were the proof that he had a problem with his daughter. Granted, he wasn’t there much for her growing up, and they had been lax on the rules about drinking. But drugs, drugs were always a no no.
“No bad press, he wants them to live a life that isn’t splashed all over the media.” Robbie said as he watched the information sink in.
“I take it the Paps today weren’t the right thing for Thomas?” Jon said as he as he poured a glass of coke with a shot of Jack.
“Let’s just say, he wasn’t pleased.” Robbie sipped his wine.
“Is he going to drop Lexie?” Jon asked, almost afraid of what he was going to tell him.
“I don’t know, he wasn’t happy with the press outside his office or the photos showing up in his mail.” Robbie told him. “Lexie knows that Thomas could let her go.”
“Wait a second, she knew this before dinner? She didn’t seem upset or anything, until we were heading back to the room.” Jon sat the glass down hard on the table. “Whatever you do Robbie, don’t let him drop her. I’ll handle my daughter and clear this up.”
“I’ll do my best, but there aren’t any guarantees.” Robbie told him.
Jon headed back to theie room, he wasn’t sure what he would find when he got there. Using his keycard he let himself him. He found Lexie sitting at the desk working on her laptop, her iPad playing a video of the Trio. Her suitcases were open to be packed, she was still in the dress she wore to the dinner.
“So, you know about Thomas?” Was all she asked.
“Yes, and I have the pictures that Robbie printed.” Jon went over and leaned on the desk. “I gave her so many chances, and this is how she repays us.”
“Jon, she’s got three weeks, then she graduates. She’s an adult, she knows what she’s doing and she’s using Dorothea and Graham, just as she’s using us.” She leaned back in the chair. “I know I’m just her mother on paper, which she constantly lets me know. She doesn’t want me as her mother, and Dorothea lets her do whatever she wants.”
Jon was upset, how had this gotten so out of hand?
“We’ll sit down with her when we get home.” Jon said, but when Lexie looked up at him he knew what was coming.
“You talk to her, you’re her father. Maybe you should get Dorothea there to back you up.” Lexie said as she got up and closed up her laptop and packed it away. “After all she’s her mother.” Walking over and putting her briefcase next to her carry on. “I’m going to shower and get ready for bed. Call Dorothea and set up your talk with Steph.” She went to pass him and he reached out to pull her close. “Jon, I know I have never said this to you, but, I’m not in the mood.” She had placed a shaking hand on his chest.
Jon dropped his arms to his side and let her go on past. He could see the hurt in her eyes, and heard how her voice shook. He knew she was scared, her whole career was on the line. All because of his spoiled daughter. Pulling out his phone he went out on the balcony and dialed the number that was going to be a long call.
“Dot, we have to talk.” He said as he sat on the lounge and wished he had a cigarette.
The boys were at sports practice and Desie and Lexie were in with the Trio, Hellen would be back in a few weeks. Lexie enjoyed this time with Desie, they would take the Trio out the back and for a walk to the park.
Lexie was quieter ever since she and Jon got back, of this Desie and Matt have had a lot of questions. Pushing the babies in the swings, Desie couldn’t take it much longer.
“Okay, want to tell me why all of a sudden you’re so quiet?” Desie pushed Cullen in the swing, his giggles filled the air. “You’re normally all excited after you and Jonny come back from a trip, is this about Steph and the pot?”
Lexie gave a tired laugh.
“That and waiting on the axe to fall with my editor.” Lexie gently pushed Livie and Maddy who joined their brother in a bought of giggles. “In one weekend, Stephanie made more press than I did with the release that my first book is being made into a movie.” Lexie looked around the park for hidden paps.
“You got the movie deal, that’s fantastic.” Desie knew Lexie had been approached to do the movie and that Jon may have landed the main character part.
“Yeah, if I don’t get dropped because of Stephanie and her pot parties.” She took a deep breath and nodded her head toward the cluster of trees. They started to get the Trio back into their stroller. Getting out of the park and back to the townhouse was not easy. They were stopped on the street and first Livie started to cry, then Maddy. Lexie was near tears by the time they got back. Getting the girls calmed down and cleaned up, then put and Cullen down for a nap.
Jon and Dorothea were due to speak with Stephanie after school, and they wanted Lexie to be a part of this discussion. Lexie knew the meeting was not going to be a calm parent child talk, and to have mother and stepmother involved was going to be like a powder keg going off. Lexie wasn’t looking forward to this, she hadn’t heard anything from Thomas yet and that was about to killing her.
Stephanie knew something was up, Lexie seemed to be quiet and when she had gone into help with the Trio, she had given her one word answers. Sure she was tired from her first time being gone for two weeks, but she had just seemed cold. When she had gone to talk to Jesse, he didn’t know what was up, he was busy studying for finals.
“Steph, can you come into the office with me?” Jon asked his daughter.
“Sure Daddy, I was wondering when we were going to talk about my graduation party.” Stephanie said as she followed her dad in the office. Looking around she saw not only Lexie but her mom too. She rushed over to her mother and gave her a big hug. “Momma, why didn’t you tell me you were coming?”
Dorothea looked from Jon to their daughter, this was going to be bad.
“Your dad called me yesterday and I cleared my day to come over.” Dorothea told her. Called being the operable word, if she hadn’t shown up, he’d have some uncle come pick her up. Better in the car than in the trunk.
“Did you have a good weekend at your mom’s two weeks ago?” Jon asked his daughter.
“Yeah, I told you, we went shopping and Graham cooked burgers and brats on the grill and some of his kid’s friends came to the party.” Stephanie told him, didn’t I tell him all this before?
“You should’ve taken some pictures, then I could see it, you must want some of them to come to your graduation party.” Jon said as he toyed with the folder on his desk.
“Sure, some of them we’re great.” Stephanie said not sure what was going on. Why was he messing with that folder, and why wasn’t Lexie saying anything. “Is Grandpop going to make the sauce?”
“I don’t think so.” Jon told her. “You really should have taken some pictures.” He looked from Dorothea to Lexie.
“Yeah Steph, I like that pink top, you always look great in pink, with your hair pulled back. Really shows off the earring I bought you for Christmas.” Lexie told her.
That should have been a warning, she had bought the shirt when she was with her mom and Lexie was already gone. The shirt was at the dry cleaners because she got sauce on it when she ate some of Graham’s ribs. The second warning should have been how quiet Lexie was talking, whenever she got mad she didn’t yell, like her dad, or shrill like her mom.
“Thanks, if we aren’t gonna have Grandpa’s sauce, maybe Graham can do his ribs?” Stephanie kept on, ignoring the warning signs.
“There won’t be a big party this year.” Jon said, tapping his fingers on the folder.
“Are we going to St. Bart’s?” Stephanie asked, the whole family at the beach or like a few years ago, on the private boat.
“Not this time.” Dorothea told her.
It was then that all this started to sink in. No party, no trip to St. Bart’s and Lexie got up from the desk beside her father and walked around to where she sat.
“Your father and I were ambushed as we headed to the elevator this past weekend. Do you have any idea why we were ambushed?” Lexie asked in nearly a whisper. Lexie had made a point of bending near to Stephanie seat, so no one else could hear the talking outside, where she was sure her oldest sons were listening.
“Ambushed, how would I know this, I was at a photoshoot for Uncle Kenny.” Stephanie looked up at Lexie, who seemed to get closer to her and madder.
“Seems you had a special party at your mothers while your dad was left to care for the Trio with Hellen. My Editor, Thomas, is a stickler for his writers being clean. Not showing up on TMZ or E news, that are not high on his list of clean venues of news.” Lexie reached over and took the folder from Jon. “You might not have taken pictures of the party, but someone else did, it only took me a few clicks to find these.” She tossed the folder to Stephanie.
Stephanie didn’t have to open the folder to know what was inside.
“Thomas is trying to decide whether keep me and do my movie, or fire me. If Thomas fires me, no one, and I mean no one will hire me and the movie is a thing of the past. All because of your addiction to pot and not following the rules of this family.”
Stephanie looked at her mother and then back to Lexie, she knew she was up shit creek with no paddle.
“I told you that there would be no party, you promised me no more drugs.” Jon said as he looked over at Dorothea.
“I have to agree with your father and stepmother.” Dorothea told her. She could see the hurt in her daughter’s eyes, but she had to back Jon on this issue.
“Do you understand that you might have cost Lexie her editor and publisher? After all she has done for you, this is how you repay her?” Jon asked his daughter.
Lexie couldn’t stand it anymore, Stephanie just sat there.
“What do you have to say for yourself?” Lexie asked her.