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Sidney arrived home just as his phone rang. He set down his messenger bag and reached for it. “Hello?”
“Is this Sidney Wilks?” a woman’s voice asked.
“Yes.” Sidney prepared to hang up. Calls from people trying to sell him bullshit were starting to get out of control.
“This is Sheila, Jackson’s wife. I thought you should know your father had a massive stroke yesterday morning.”
“Is he dead?” It was the only thing going through Sidney’s mind. He’d become so detached from his estranged father, he often went weeks without even thinking about the bastard. The fact that Sheila, a stepmother he’d never even met, was calling, didn’t bode well.
“No. Not yet anyway, but the doctors believe it’s only a matter of time. This was his third stroke in the last year and his body’s just not able to handle much more. He’s at North Colorado Medical Center.”
Sidney remained silent. He had no intention of travelling to Colorado, especially with Thanksgiving only two days away. Did that make him a bastard? Probably. But Sidney believed strongly in the old saying, you reap what you sow.
Sheila cleared her throat. It was obvious she’d been crying, and although Sidney felt no love for the woman, he was still human. “Are you okay?” he finally asked.
“Not really,” she answered. “I know the two of you haven’t spoken for years, but he’s still your father. You may not remember that but he does.”
“Does he? How long were the two of you married before he actually told you he had a queer son?” Sidney took a deep breath. Yelling at a distraught woman wasn’t going to solve anything. Few outsiders would understand Sidney’s contempt for Jackson Wilks.
“We’ve had our issues over your father’s secrecy, but that’s all in the past now.”
“Is it?” Sidney silently cursed himself for trying to pick a fight with a distraught woman. “Thank you for calling, Sheila. Let me know if there are any changes.”
“Is that all?” she asked.
“Yeah. That’s the best I can do for now. Sorry.” Sidney hung up before dropping onto the sofa.
He was still sitting in the same spot when his partner of twelve years, Grady Nash, walked into the house from his office in the detached garage. Sidney smiled up at the man he loved. “Dad’s had a stroke.”