BERNADETTE CYNTHIA HEALY
EPISODE 9- PART 2
Jack stays silent, and I wait for his response, though he is overshadowed by Polly's initial rant.
'Who the hell does she think she is? Is it not enough for her to have destroyed your marriage and our family while she was alive but now she has the nerve to ask you to look for a brother that clearly wanted nothing to do with her?' It continues for a full four minutes.
Jack and I exchange a quick glance before he looks away and I worry that my son is somehow disappointed in me. When it seems safe from Polly's tirade he ventures a question, 'what have you decided to do Mum?'
I look to the floor. I have no reason to accept this crazy request and I know it's going to be difficult to get them to understand but I have made my decision. I can feel my children's eyes boring down on me and I know I have to give them an answer.
'I'm going to look for him.'
It's Jack who surprises me. His brown eyes seem to be accepting of my decision, and I would swear he almost nods his head in assent, while Polly goes into a tirade of expletives.
I wait for her to finish. She has every right to feel the way she does and I knew that my decision wouldn't be easy on her. I hope she'll believe that it isn't about the money; we don't need the money, I certainly don't need the money and hopefully it can be of some use and even of some good to the world.
'Polly, Jack,' I sigh, unsure of where to start. 'I felt exactly the same way you did Polly when I first read the letter. I couldn't even bring myself to read the will properly at the time because I was still reeling from the words that witch sent.'
'Bitch, mother; she's a bitch. Or was a bitch,' Polly snarls.
I hold up my hands in order to try and keep the peace. 'Whatever we think of her doesn't matter any more. She's dead and despite her best efforts she didn't come between us and our family. I think that's the greatest victory here. I didn't want to help her initially. I saw no reason to. And I still don't have a great reason for wanting to help, but it's only fair that her family know about her death. I'm not doing this for her, but I'm doing it because it's the right thing to do.'
'And not for the money?' Jack pipes up.
'And not for the money.' I look over at him, cup of tea in hand, brow furrowed as he tries to get his head around everything that has happened.
'Jack, you know we don't need the money. However, a lot of good could be done with the money. I didn't realise there was money involved until I read the will, and even without the money, which is nothing short of a bribe, I would look for her brother. I will always remain the better person.'
'So it's for your ego then?'
'Jack!' this time Polly jumps to my defence.
'In a way, yes, it's for my ego. And it's to satisfy my own curiosity. I can't say that every single one of my motives is pure, but there is no malice behind them either. Jack, she's dead. She did everything in her power to come between me and your father when she was alive, but now she can't hurt us anymore. Wouldn't you want to find out if you had a brother or a sister you didn't know about, and they had died?'
He doesn't respond instantly. Because Polly was so ready to defend my actions, I can already see that she is beginning to accept my decision. It makes me feel a little calmer and little stronger knowing that I have at least one of my children's support.
'I assumed you'd do as she asked, you're a sucker for lost causes, but I think you should leave behind what's dead and buried. Who knows what information you're going to dig up? Who knows who you're going to hurt by telling the truth?' The lines of concern that mark his face are memories that he's tried so hard to suppress over the years. The affair had a much greater effect on him than it did Polly or me, despite our more vocal outrages. I've always worried about Jack, but never more so than right this second.
'Jack, if you don't think I should look for this man, if you truly think that this is a bad idea, I will put the whole Last Will and Testament behind me and never mention that woman again. But I need you to tell me why you think I shouldn't look for a man who had nothing to do with his sister? Tell me Jack. Tell me and I'll stop, I'll put an end to it today.'