Run, Girl (If You Can) - Chapter 474 - The Mother Test

[Updated at: 2021-01-11 19:17:42]
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Having gotten such a cryptic answer out of her mother, Violet was determined to keep her eye on Michael Gray at Thanksgiving dinner and see if she could figure out the connection between him and her father for himself. She sent Noah a \'Happy Thanksgiving\' text out of habit and was slightly surprised to get one back since he had been AWOL for so long.


She tried to engage him in conversation by telling him that Michael Gray was coming over for dinner and she was planning on trying to figure him out but didn\'t get a response. He must have been busy helping prepare dinner.


Goodness knows Violet was. Nathan had taken over the kitchen and was ordering people around to help with less important tasks like peeling potatoes and putting the rolls into the oven. Kaleb and Oliver, who had arrived home late the night before, were on the verge of mutiny.


She didn\'t mind it. Nathan was in his element and she bowed down to his superior knowledge. Even their mother, who had been cooking Thanksgiving dinners much longer, let him do his thing.


"So I hear your boyfriend is coming over for dinner," Oliver said gruffly as they peeled potatoes side by side.


Of course the rest of her siblings had been gossiping about her. How annoying.


"He\'s not my boyfriend," Violet insisted. "At least not yet."


Oliver\'s eyes narrowed. "Why would you invite someone who isn\'t even your boyfriend to Thanksgiving?"


"He had nowhere to go! I felt bad!"


Their mother cut in before things could get more heated. "It\'s not a big deal, Ollie. I used to invite friends to Thanksgiving all the time. She\'s allowed to bring someone she\'s dating casually."


Aaron suddenly scowled and muttered under his breath. "Don\'t remind me."


Violet nearly laughed. Somebody was still jealous about something that must have happened long before she was born. He really was such a sucker where his wife was involved.


She had to admit she was nervous about how Jeremy would fit in. Obviously he knew her dad well and had met most of her family members at least once but still…if he didn\'t fit into her family dynamic there was no way she could continue dating him no matter how much she liked him.


Her family was important to her. Violet could never be with someone who didn\'t get along with them because that would result in them drifting apart. Like how Noah seemed to be drifting away from her right now…


It really did bother her more than she let on. Her family (minus Oliver, who hadn\'t been there) had all asked about him more than once in the past couple of weeks because they had never gone so long without seeing him. Neither had she. It was disconcerting.


Violet missed him. Really missed him. There had to be a way she could corner him after he got back from his vacation and ask him what on earth had been going on since he ghosted her.


Michael Gray arrived first with a blueberry pie obviously purchased from a bakery downtown. He seemed quite pleased to be there. His smile was more genuine than it had been the first time Violet saw him.


"Aaron! How nice to see you again. Care to introduce me to your children?"


Her father had a neutral expression on his face, which wasn\'t what Violet was used to seeing from him at all. Normally he was quite expressive.


"You already met Violet. Everyone else is in the kitchen." He pointed everyone out by name and they all stared on in confusion.


"Who\'s this?" Oliver asked.


"An old friend of mine."


Aaron\'s tone was flat but Violet could tell he had said it grimly. They were fairly similar in their mannerisms after all. He really, really didn\'t like this guy. But no one else would be able to tell because he was outwardly cordial. Well, her mother probably could. Those two practically had a psychic connection.


As her brothers puzzled out what this random person they had never heard of was doing here, the intercom buzzed again. Jeremy had arrived. Violet took the opportunity to escape the awkwardness and tell the doorman to let him up.


When he stepped out of the elevator her breath caught in her throat. She had never seen him dressed so casually before because they usually got together right after he was leaving work or was dressed nicely for their dates on the weekends.


Right now he was wearing an olive green sweater and jeans. And he looked really, really good in them.


"Hi Jeremy," she managed to say despite her inner turmoil. "Come on up. Everyone\'s already here."


"Who else came?"


"Somebody my dad knows."


It was the best way to explain things since Violet didn\'t know much else about the man. She only knew her father was afraid of him and that both of her parents referred to him as Gray. Wasn\'t it kind of random to refer to him by his last name instead of his first?


Jeremy introduced himself to the people he hadn\'t met yet and Violet could already feel the death vibes radiating off of Oliver. Oh boy. Here they go again.


Oliver asked him the same kinds of questions Kaleb and Nathan had the other day and he answered all of them with ease. He had passed the brother test, which came as a relief to Violet. Now he had to pass the mother test.


Keeley had only met Jeremy once before in a work context as she dropped something off for her husband so she hadn\'t had much of an impression of him. At least that\'s what she told Violet when she said she was inviting him over for Thanksgiving.


She was normally a fairly good judge of character. Violet was quite curious what she would think of him after they shared a meal together.


Her impression of him only got more positive as time went on. He was handsome, smart, and relatively easy to talk to (which was a big deal in her book because she didn\'t always have the best time making new acquaintances). So far she hadn\'t seen anything that would give her reason not to continue liking him.


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