Chris had never seen Max this nervous. He never let a thing bother him. Never. Not until his father came to town.
"Well, what is it that bugs you the most?" Chris was getting tense too. He checked the toilet five times in an hour to make sure it was clean. "Is it me?" Chris could just leave for a little while. He could just stay at work. There was a couch in the office. He could give Max all the time he needed with his dad.
"No." Max shook his head. "Honestly, its going to be just fine. Its just I haven't seen him for awhile. And, and I'm not sure how I'm going to react. That's all." He turned on the TV then as if everything was normal. Sat down on the couch as if he had all the time in the world.
"React?" Chris winced, staring at him. "What is that supposed to me? Its because of me, isn't it?"
"No." He sounded certain as he flipped through channels. Chris sat down, but not too close. His father would be here any minute.
"If I tell you something, you have to act like you don't know. You don't know any of it."
"Like what?" Chris wondered what it could be. Really? He hoped this didn't involve a multiple choice questionaire and a crossword puzzle. He'd never get it. "Just tell me?"
"All right." Max turned off the TV then. "I found out, Rex is not my Dad."
Chris cleared his throat then.
"But I don't want to bring it up, right now. Actually, not anytime. Really. I mean, he's my Dad. He'll always be my Dad, and I can't forget that. And I don't want to be the one to tell him." Max kept shaking his head as if he might lose it before his Dad ever got here. "I mean, really, its my Mom who should tell him. Isn't it?"
"Yeah, of course," Chris nodded.
"So you're not going to say anything?" Max looked at Chris, very serious.
"No, I won't." Chris promised. With that Chris gave Max a pat on the back. Max almost embraced him with a kiss, but went instantly into a man hug. His Dad just drove up.