For once, Max really wished he could let Chris do all the talking, and he did the first five minutes or so.
His Dad talked about his place and questioned him about how long he'd had it and was it worth having his own place. Those sort of questions. Chris looked over to Max then that he should start talking. Now.
"How have you been?" Max was putting on the best line he could think of. Just the words hurt to say when he knew he wanted to tell him the truth. He caught his breath.
"How have I been? You're just a stranger, you know that? I didn't even know you were back?" Rex winced grabbing Max's hand and pulling him in for a hug. Max thought he might turn to ice.
"I know, that was just horrible of me. I-I just got so busy, you know," Max smiled when he thought of Serenity, "They are just the kindest bunch." He looked over at Chris. "Just full of generiosity. Letting me even live with them."
Chris about choked on a laugh and went in to the kitchen then to grab some coffee for them along with an assortment of Christmas treats the ladies at the church had given them.
"I'm glad somebody's taking care of you," Rex smiled. "I've been awful worried about you. Hadn't heard from you in the longest time. I started to wonder what I'd done."
"You haven't done anything wrong, honest." Max shook his head. "So I guess you're out there in the wilderness still."
"Yeah, I can't get away from it, you know, kind of like you and your church." His Dad grinned.
"Well, to tell you the truth I'm just not sure how much longer I'll be at Serenity," Max nodded. "It just depends. I just might not be the right man for the job, and if I'm not, well, I just pray they'll find someone who can fill those shoes. I'll just look for something else if it comes to that. But its been a real blessing. All of it."
"Now why are you sounding so down about that?" His father finally sat down when Chris brought the coffee and treats. "You've always been impressive when you preach."
Max was a little shocked he'd say these things. He never heard such from his mother.
"Well, thank you for telling me so," Max had to sit down too. He took a deep breath. "I think its my calling. I love it. I do. Its just well, I might have to make a choice and if I do. I want to make sure I'm still helping others."
"Good, I don't think you can possibly go wrong there."
"I don't know, Dad, you can't always be perfect," Max told him taking his cup of coffee then.
"Well, you always were," his Dad said.
"You know, I was never that perfect," Max squinted.
"You got good grades. Always made friends. Even when you took chances, always turned out to be the right thing to do." He told him.
Max looked at Chris then. He couldn't help but smile even more.