Chapter 15:

First To The Bar


Todd always seems to be the first to bar and loves being the last to leave. In the corner of the pub where cold pints covered the little table by the fire, Todd shows me some of his favourite screenshots of the chat logs he's had with the catfish Kathleen. They got her down to a T. They got all her old photos and began uploading them as if they were recent.

Todd and Kathleen have hardly any mutual friends on Facebook. Kathleen has thousands of friends, but I don't know any of them. What I think is strange that neither I nor my grandfather is mutual friends with Kathleen.

I'm sure we were friends on Facebook. Maybe the catfight Kathleen blocked her family, close friends and any potential mutual from seeing her profile. That way, she can have full control over what she puts on Facebook. Anyone outside of the town would it's a fake profile.

My stomach turns at my sister's nude pics. She's always been proud of her sexuality and I'm proud of her for that. I love her spirit and her dedication, but I don't want to see my dead sister in that light. Nor I need to know how many times Todd masturbates over her.

"Masturbation for the nation," Todd chuckles before guzzling his pint. "It's good for you, you know?" He budges my shoulder. "Come on Bobby, surely you do it too."

"I've never done it."

"It's easy. Maybe I should show you."

I cross my legs. "No thank you. That will not be necessary." Call me old-fashioned, but I'm finding this conversation disgusting.

I can't believe my eyes as I see who walks into the door – Father District. That man is the last person I would expect to come into a bar like this. He goes up to the bar and orders a glass of cranberry juice.

"Todd..." I whisper to him. "That's the priest."

"You mean your mate?"

"I wouldn't call him that, I haven't spoken to him in years."

Father District pays the barman and takes his drink. His head hovers around the tables until his eyes meet our direction. He approaches us with a smile. He hasn't changed one bit apart from some silver strands on ashen hair. "Hello, Bobby, fancy meeting you here."

"Hello, Father."

Father District joins us. "So what brings you here?"

"We're just mooching around town." I know he won't believe us. He likes to know every little detail.

"I see. And this man here is your friend I presume."

Todd waves. "I'm Todd Patrick. I'm Kathleen's boyfriend."

He holds back laughter and shakes Todd's hand. "Well, peace be with you, my friend. My boy, you're going to need it."

"Have you got problems with her because she had a girlfriend?" Todd asks him.

Father District sips his drink before he gives his answer. "No, of course not. I have no issues with gay people. It's sex offenders I have problems with especially if the victims are children."

My fists clench together as Todd catches my glass. My teeth clatter as Father District sits back against his chair and smiles. I hold Todd's hand. The people at the bar would think we're gay doing it like this. But I know Todd is going to trash him if I don't do something.

"You believe those lies from Annie?" Todd snarls.

"Yes, I do. Because Annie is telling the truth." He looks at Todd with a sly smile and wrinkled nose. He looks at people like that when he thinks very little of him. He's only non-judgemental on Sundays. His head steers to me. "Oh Bobby, you've been through so much that you were blinded. It's something that I've always liked about you Bobby, you always saw the good in people."

I confront him. "If you're making a dig at Todd, then you should know that he saved my life."

"See what I mean?" Father District claps my hands. "I've had children come forward to say what Kathleen had done to them."

"Like who?" Todd shouts. The landlord orders him to keep the noise down. He's trying to concentrate on the football.

"I can't say. The fact that I've already told you that people have come to me to say what Kathleen had done to them is me stepping out of line. I've made a vow to god. Whatever people confess to me is strictly between me, them and God."

"I bet my cousin was one of them," I enquire. "You were the only one who believed in her."

Father District fills my cup. "You know, I never gave up on you."

I say nothing. I don't want to trigger the bad memories.

He leans forward and says to me, "Bobby, you can still achieve your dreams. I've had works with the Bishop, and they'd be happy to have you in our family again."

"I'm a divorced man."

"There are a few priests who are divorcees now. And there's nothing stopping you from becoming a vicar or a deacon. God has many ways to his kingdom."

"OH GOD," Todd grumbles as he rolls his eyes. "It's Annie!"

"Don't say the lord's name in vain," Father District demands.

Could this day get any more bizarre than it already is? 

Flashback: Togetherness

Kathleen Fishman

I love you. x

Todd Patrick

I love you too. X

Kathleen Fishman

How's your day been? Xx

Todd Patrick

Awful! Had another fight with my sister again.

Kathleen Fishman

Cheer up you'll be fine. 😊

Todd Patrick

You still up for meeting up?

Kathleen Fishman

I would love to but I can't right now.

Still having treatment.

Todd Patrick

Which hospital are you at?

I can get a lift there.

Kathleen Fishman

No. Remember this relationship is supposed to be a secret.

Todd Patrick

But what about our other partners.

Kathleen Fishman

It's okay. What they don't know about us won't hurt them.

As long as you don't say my name when you're having an orgasm. LOL