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May to September

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Yes, because I can never have too much work, I've decided to once again start two fictions the same night.Hopefully people will like them both.

Story Title: May to September

Type of story: Short/Medium fic

Main Characters: Leah, Dexter, VJ, Xavier, April, Roo and others

BTTB rating: T

Genre: Drama

Does story include spoilers: Probably not

Any warnings: No violence or bad language.Mild to moderate sexual content

Summary: Dexter wasn't intending to become quite so heavily involved with the Patterson family, yet somehow they end up being inextricably linked.


“I’m home, Mum!”VJ called out from the kitchen.

Leah had just been taking a nap in the front room in between shifts at the Diner.With a sigh, she pushed herself up off the sofa and headed through to greet her son.“Hi, Veej.How was school?”

“Fine,”VJ answered, yet somehow he didn’t seem to be able to meet her eyes,“I’ve got a load of homework so I’ll be in my room.”

“VJ,”Leah said sharply, in a tone of voice guaranteed to stop a teenage boy in his tracks.VJ turned and looked at her awkwardly.“What are you hiding?”

“Nothing,”he insisted.But he didn’t sound very convincing.

Leah’s eyes drifted to VJ’s satchel.He seemed to be holding onto it just a bit too hard.“What’s in your bag?”

He gripped it even harder.“Just school stuff.”

Leah held out her hand.“Give it here.”

“It’s not really very interesting,”VJ claimed.Leah didn’t answer.She just carried on holding out her hand.Reluctantly, VJ handed it over.

Leah put it down on the kitchen surface and looked through the contents.One item quickly came to her attention.“Ah, what’s this?A report card.”She took it out, scanned it and took in the collection of Ds and Es his teachers had awarded him.

Leah looked back at VJ, who lowered his eyes, shame faced.“I’m sorry, Mum.”

“Look at this.Geography.”Leah had brought the report card into work with her and was sharing it with Roo while the latter prepared the meals in the kitchen.“‘VJ has yet to grasp such simple concepts as points on a compass.A thorough grounding in the subject is needed to understand the more complicated elements of the syllabus.’”

“Ouch,”Roo offered,“That’s pretty hard on the little guy.”

“I know,”Leah agreed,“When I saw his face, I couldn’t bring myself to be angry with him.He’s obviously mortified about it all.”

“Well, what’s the problem?”Roo wondered,“I mean, he seems like a fairly bright kid.”

“He is!”Leah insisted,“All his teachers think so.It’s just…I guess over the past few years things have been chaotic and he’s fallen behind.And the further behind he gets, the harder it is to catch up.His teachers just don’t have the time to give him special help.”

“Have you thought about getting him a tutor?I’m sure Gina could recommend someone.”

“Well, yeah, that’s the obvious solution.Problem is, and I hate to say this, I’m not sure I can afford anyone good.”

“Guess what you need is someone good but cheap.”

“Yeah, where can I find one of those?”Leah headed out to the counter.

“Coffee and a doughnut, please,”Dexter ordered.

Leah got him his order, looking at him carefully.“Dexter, you’re pretty smart, aren’t you?”

“Well, some people call me pretty smart.Others call me loser geek or socially inept.”

“It’s just VJ’s fallen behind with his school work and it seems like what he really needs is someone to work with him one on one, give him a few pointers in the right direction.”

Dexter sighed.“I would love to help the little guy but what with uni and study and working at the hospital…”

“I’ll pay you.”

Dexter stopped in mid-sentence and leaned forward.“Let me see if we can come to some arrangement.”

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Thanking you all for your comments, hope you like this chapter.


VJ looked despondently at the blank page in front of him.“I don’t know.”

Dexter looked at him kindly.“Yeah, you do.”

“No, I don’t.”

Dexter thought hard.“You ever play one of those computer games where you have to build cities and send lots of little people through them and then you blow them up or hit it with a cyclone just to make it more fun?”


“Well, people do that in real life too.Except for the cyclone part.Sometimes they’ll try and blow up a city but they’re probably not the ones who built it.”Dexter took a deep breath.“Where were we?”

“Geography?”VJ prompted.

“Yes!Exactly.So, you’re a government or a council or whatever.And you’ve got lots of people who need homes.So what do you do?”

“Build some houses?”

Dexter patted him on the shoulder.“Right you are, my young friend.But they don’t just need houses. They need jobs and they need places to buy stuff.So you make sure there’s room for businesses as well.Or even better…suppose you find that you’ve got a place where there’s something valuable, like coal or gold, buried underground, something that you want.What do you do then?”

“You…build some houses near it?”VJ’s eyes lit up.“So the people dig up the stuff for you and that gives them jobs.”

Dexter clicked his fingers.“Give that boy a gold star.And that’s where urban sprawl comes in.”

“How are you two getting on?”Leah asked, as she came in the back door.

“I think we’re getting to the bottom of things,”Dexter opined.

VJ nodded.“Dexter’s explained it all to me.I get Geography now.It’s just like a giant version of Sims.”

Dexter winced slightly.“That wasn’t quite what I said…”


Dexter looked at Leah uncomfortably and shrugged.“Okay, maybe that is what I said.”

Leah smiled at him reassuringly.“Well, then I’ll leave you two to get on with it.”

Leah was boiling the kettle when Dexter came back through from VJ’s room.“Coffee?”she offered.

“Please,”he confirmed, accepting a cup from her,“VJ’s just through there doing his homework. That’s Geography sorted, now I just have to work out how to relate the Normandy landings to Star Wars.”He paused.“In an educational way.”

“Hey, whatever works,”Leah agreed,“Thanks for doing this.”

“Ah, I’m kind of enjoying being the Mr.Miyagi to his Karate Kid.Nice to know I can offer something to the younger generation.”

“I’m not sure how long I can afford to continue paying you, though.If you’ve set him on the right path…”

Dexter shrugged.“How about I offer you a frequent flyer discount?Kind of like a supermarket loyalty card?”

Leah stared at him.“Are you really that keen to carry on helping him?”

“Well, he’s a good kid.There aren’t many of those about.Most of them just want to kick me in the kneecaps.”

Leah smiled.“You know, you’re kind of a good kid yourself, Dex.”

“Well, it’s nice of you to say so…”

“Hey, learn to take a compliment.”

“Give me a few more so I can practise?”

Leah gave him an amused look.“Oh, you want me to flatter you?”

“It’d help my self-esteem.And I might even knock a couple more dollars off my fee.”

Leah took his cup away from him and swatted at his ear playfully.“Go on, get out of here.”

“On my way.”

“See you next time?”

Dexter paused in the doorway and smiled.“Next time, grasshoppers.”

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Thank you for all the comments, hope you like this chapter.


Dexter kept a close eye on VJ, who was doing his homework at the table in the living room.The boy’s head kept drooping, as if he was struggling to stay awake.After one droop nearly took him down as far as the table top, Dexter tapped him on the arm.“Okay, bed.”

“I’m not tired,”VJ insisted.

Dexter gave an exaggerated yawn.“Well, I am.See you in the morning.”

“Okay, okay,”VJ conceeded, getting up,“Thanks, Dex.”

Dexter waited until VJ had disappeared off into his bedroom before joining Leah in the kitchen. “VJ’s headed off to visit the Sandman,”he noted.

Leah gave him an amused smile. “You know the Sandman’s not real, right?”

“Sure he is.I saw Spider-Man fight him that time.”Dexter went to retrieve his jacket from one of the kitchen chairs.

“Thanks again for helping him out,”Leah noted,“We’re both really grateful.”She went to kiss him on the cheek but as she did so he moved slightly and her lips landed on his.She clasped a hand to her mouth in shock.“God, Dex, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to do that.”

“That’s okay,”Dexter reassured her,“There are worse things that have happened to me than being accidentally kissed by a hot older woman.”

“Well, it’s nice of you to say so.”

“No, really, I mean it, look at you.You’re gorgeous and sexy and I would seriously kiss you again in a heartbeat if I thought I could get away with it.”

“Dexter, you’re being a real gentleman…”

Dexter leaned forward and kissed her full on the lips, letting it linger for a couple of seconds.“See? You’ve taken advantage of me, I’ve taken advantage of you, we’re both even…”

Leah flung her arms round his neck and kissed him passionately, going far beyond a simple peck on the lips, then released him, looking mortified.“Dexter, I am so…”

He grabbed her and pulled her back towards him and they started kissing again.This time, neither of them ended it.Instead, she started steering him towards her bedroom.

Leah slowly opened her eyes to find herself alone in bed.She had an odd flash of memory from the previous night:Dexter had been around to tutor VJ, they’d chatted after VJ had gone to bed, then…

No.That couldn’t possibly have happened.It must have been a strange dream.

Leah got out of bed, idly wondering how she’d ended up sleeping naked.

Leah got dressed and headed out of her room.She heard movement in the kitchen.VJ must have decided to make his own breakfast.That was unlike him, even if he got up before her he usually sat and watched television until she surfaced.

“Monkeys don’t really eat them,”VJ was saying.Leah wondered who he was talking to.

Then she heard a voice that clearly wasn’t VJ.“Of course they do.Why do you think he’s got his picture on the box?”

Dexter?Leah had an odd sinking feeling as she headed into the kitchen.It increased as she saw that Dexter was wearing the same clothes he’d been wearing the previous night.The same ones he’d been wearing in the dream that she was now pretty certain wasn’t a dream.

He grinned at her.“Hey there, sleepyhead!I didn’t want to disturb you so I was just getting VJ some breakfast.”

Leah swallowed hard.“It’s nice of you to call round this early to see him.”

Dexter stared hard at her for several seconds.Then he looked at VJ and looked back at Leah and she saw a knowing look slowly cross his face.He gave her a wink that fortunately VJ didn’t notice.“Yes! Right.I was out for a jog, ah, walk, I was out for a walk and just thought I’d pop in here to see VJ and make him some breakfast.”He paused.“And now I’m going to go.”He slipped out the door, a grin on his face.

“He’s nice,”VJ remarked.

“Ah, yes, he is,”Leah agreed but underneath the calm exterior her mind was in turmoil.What the hell had she done?

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Thanks for all your comments, glad people don't seem to mind that twist much.


Xavier was watching Dexter extremely closely.Why he was doing this, Dexter wasn’t entirely sure. They were simply sitting at the Diner, having coffee and muffins, like they did every day.There was no reason to suspect anything was different.

“Something you want to tell me?”Xavier asked.

But apparently Xavier had a reason.“Like what?”Dexter attempted.

“Like why you’re even more wired than usual.It’s obvious you’re bursting to tell some sort of secret.”

Dexter was forced to conclude he didn’t have much of a poker face.But maybe telling Xavier was a good idea, his friend probably had some experience of these things.“I had sex last night,”he said in a stage whisper.He made sure no-one was within earshot before adding the even more incredible part, “With a woman.”

Xavier didn’t seem entirely overwhelmed by the latter revelation.“Well, yeah, I didn’t think you were into guys.”

Dexter winced.Obviously he wasn’t getting the point across.“No, I mean a woman,”he reiterated, “Like, in her thirties.”

Xavier’s eyes widened at that one.“Wow, impressive.I thought having my first time with a girl a couple of years older than me was…It was your..?”

“Yes,”Dexter interrupted tetchily,“Last night I was like a song by Madonna.Touched for the very first time.”He took a deep breath.“So what do I do now?”

Once again, Xavier didn’t seem to be on quite the same wavelength as him.“What do you mean?”

“Well, do I buy her flowers, do I ask out her out on a date, do I send her a card saying ‘Thanks, I had a good time’?”

Xavier seemed to consider this.“Have you seen her since?”

“I saw her this morning.”

“And how was she towards you?”

“Well, she seemed to want to pretend it had never happened.Mind you, that might be because her son was in the room.”

Xavier blinked.“She’s got a son?”

“Yeah.Didn’t I mention that part?”

Xavier was silent for a few moments.“Do you like this woman?I mean, do you want to go out with her?”

Dexter realised he hadn’t actually thought about it that deeply.“Well, she’s hot.And we get on okay. But the two of us going out together..?I dunno, it’s hard to imagine.I guess it could work.Mainly I just think, she was there, I was there, she seemed to want it and I thought there’s only so many offers you can turn down before you move into the basement and resign yourself to dying a virgin.”He sighed. “God, what does that make me?”

“It makes you an eighteen-year-old boy.”Xavier thought hard.“Way I see it, you’ve got two options. You can front up to this woman, ask her where you stand.Or you can do the manly thing and hide from her.”

Dexter had a sudden sixth sense that caused him to look towards the door.He saw Leah standing there, staring at him.As soon as his eyes met hers, she quickly looked away and headed into the kitchen.

Dexter looked back at Xavier.“I think I’ll hide for a bit.”

Leah chided herself for avoiding the issue but seeing Dexter sitting there like that with his friend had just hammered it home to her.He was young.Not exactly a schoolboy but near enough.A good fifteen years younger than her and she really hadn’t envisaged herself as a Mrs.Robinson type.

Roo was in the middle of cooking and looked round at Leah’s entrance.“Hey, good morning.”

Leah managed a tight smile.“Morning.”

“What did you get up to last night?”

The question caused Leah to feel a momentary spike of fear before she pushed it down.Roo almost certainly didn’t know.“Nothing much.”

“Me neither.Just watch the late night movie and end up in bed with a good book before midnight.”A sudden enthusiastic look crossed Roo’s face.“You know what we should do?Go out one night.”

“I don’t think…”

“Come on, let’s show these youngsters today how it’s done!The two of us, out on the tiles, letting our hair down, maybe pick up a couple of young studs with a taste for the more experienced woman…”

Something inside Leah snapped.“Is that really how people see me?As some desperate middle-aged woman on the lookout for a younger man to sleep with?”

Roo looked at her, stunned and a little offended.“Just a joke.Didn’t mean anything by it.”She picked up a couple of plates.“I’ll take these out to Table 3, shall I?”

Once she was alone, Leah leaned back against a cupboard and sighed.It wasn’t fair to take it out on Roo, she was just being her usual irreverent self.The truth was Leah was beginning to see herself like that.She’d slept with Dexter because she was lonely and because she could, which wasn’t like her at all.And hiding from him wasn’t doing any good.Sooner or later, she’d have to face up to him.And it might be best if it was sooner.

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Thank you for all the comments, hope you like this one.


“Hey, look, it’s Dex!”VJ shouted.Leah barely had time to register his words before he’d grabbed her arm and dragged her down the beach.“Dex!”

Dexter looked like someone who was wishing for an escape route and finding there wasn’t one. “VJ,”he greeted him with a fair amount of enthusiasm before shifting his attention to Leah.“Leah,”he greeted her with slightly less enthusiasm.She couldn’t really blame him in the circumstances.Before she could form a response, he’d turned his attention back to her son.“So, how are you doing with the old physics then?”

“Not so well,”VJ answered, his face falling slightly,“It was better when you explained things to me. Can you help me again?”

Dexter’s gaze flickered over to Leah momentarily.“Well, your mum probably thinks you don’t need my help anymore and who knows?She’s probably right.”

Leah came to a decision.“Dexter, can we have a word in private for a moment?VJ, go to the Diner and tell Colleen I said to get you a milkshake.”

VJ sighed with all the frustration of someone who knew he was being fobbed off.“Okay…”

Leah waited until he was out of sight and out of earshot before turning her attention to Dexter.“I’m sorry about, you know…sleeping with you.”She saw a disappointed look in his eyes and realised she had to tread carefully.“I don’t mean because it’s you.I mean, you’re a nice guy and you’re kind of cute.But you’re way younger than me and…I don’t really do one night stands.Which is what it was.A one night stand.”She was aware the conversation was running away from her slightly.

Fortunately, Dexter put her out of her misery.“Yeah, I kind of figured that,”he admitted,“Although I could have done with someone filling me in on the etiquette at some point.I wasn’t really sure how I was supposed to act.”

“I’m not really sure either,”Leah answered,“I’ve never done anything like this before.”

“Well, that goes double for me,”Dexter replied.It took Leah a second to register what he was saying and when she did her hand flew to her mouth.He rolled his eyes.“Don’t act like you’ve corrupted an innocent child, I was as into it as you were.”

Leah nodded in relief.“But I’m sorry if I led you on or if I didn’t handle things too well afterwards…”

“Trust me, people have done a lot worse to me and been a lot less apologetic about it.”

Leah let the conversation die down for a few moments before adding,“And VJ?He really likes having you around but if you find it too awkward…”

Dexter shrugged.“I’m a big boy, I can manage.”

“And I’d rather he didn’t know…”

Dexter gave an abrupt nod.“I won’t tell anyone if you don’t.”

Dexter felt an odd spring in his step as he approached the surf club, as if several weights had been lifted from his shoulders.He saw Xavier and April sitting on the fence outside, consuming beverages they’d apparently bought from the juice bar.

“Hey, Dex!”Xavier called,“Want some…”-he examined his juice with a certain lack of enthusiasm-“…apple and strawberry?”

“I told you that combination wouldn’t work well,”April reminded him.She shot Dexter an oddly shy look.“Do you fancy joining us?”

“So I can try out the liver and gherkin option?”Dexter found his attention lingering on April a bit longer than it should.They’d both been single for a while now yet the idea of rekindling what they’d once had had never really came up.Suddenly, though, with a few other issues out of the way, he couldn’t help wondering…

“I don’t think they do that,”Xavier interjected,“But we could ask.”

“Or we could catch a movie.”Dexter suddenly realised he was looking directly at April and hastily shifted his gaze to include Xavier.“The three of us, I mean.”

April glanced at Xavier.“What do you think?Sounds like fun?”

“If we can find a movie all three of us want to watch,”Xavier pointed out.

Dexter shrugged.“Ah, we can all come up with an idea when we get there and then play Rock Paper Scissors to resolve it.”

April nodded.“Sounds like a plan.”

“Excellent!We’ll do that then.After I’ve got myself an oddly flavoured juice so I don’t feel left out.”

As Dexter headed towards the bar, Xavier fell into step next to him.“Um, Dex, that little matter you had on your mind a couple of days ago…”

Dexter patted him on the shoulder.“Don’t worry, all sorted.I am now officially stress free.”

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Wow, the number of comments on this fiction suddenly seems to have exploded.Thank you all, hope you like this one.


“‘Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo?’You know, a lot of people think she’s saying ‘Where are you, Romeo?’ but what she’s actually saying is…”Dexter looked up to see VJ stifling a yawn. “And it appears my piece of Shakespearean trivia is less than riveting.Perhaps you’d like to watch Claire Danes again instead.”

“Sorry,”VJ apologised,“I’m just feeling a bit tired.”

Dexter slammed his copy of the text shut.“You know what you need?A break.Get out the Wii and I will…”

“We could go down the beach for a surf,”VJ interrupted.

“Or we could go down the beach and I could watch you surf,”Dexter agreed.

“I’ll just get my surf board!”VJ ran through the kitchen, nearly colliding with Leah coming through the door as he did so.“We’re going down the beach,”he told her in passing.

Dexter came through after him.“He’s tired, needs an opportunity to recharge the mental batteries so to speak, I’m not squandering valuable study time at all…”

“It’s fine, Dex,”Leah interrupted with the air of someone who wasn’t in the mood for a discussion.

Dexter stopped and stared at her.Over the past few weeks, he thought they’d put their…little encounter behind them but now she was acting oddly tense.He wondered why.“Are you normally home at this time?”he asked.

“I had a bit of a headache so I came home from the Diner,”Leah replied,“You two go and have fun. I’ll just have a lie down.”

“Right.Going to go and have fun.”

“Dexter, come on!”VJ called from outside.

“Going now,”Dexter continued before heading out to find VJ.He had the oddest feeling he’d just missed something vital.

Roo rapped lightly on the door and waited several seconds before calling out.“Leah?”

She heard a shuffling noise from inside the house, as though someone was indulging in some desperate cleaning up, before Leah called “Come in!”

Roo ventured through the kitchen into the front room.Leah was standing there, trying just a little too hard to look casual.“VJ around?”Roo asked.

“Ah, no,”Leah answered,“He’s down the beach with Dex.”

“Great!I was hoping you’d be free for a coffee, I fancied a quick session moaning about how rubbish our lives are and how all guys are pains in the neck.You up for it?”

Leah hesitated for a moment then nodded.“Sure.I’ll just get my jacket.”

Roo waited until she was alone before she began to search the room.Leah was hiding something.She recognised the signs.She shifted a few magazines on the table, wondering if there was anything hidden in or between them, before it occurred to her to try the bin.And there it was:A little white stick.

“Ready!”Leah announced as she came back in, then she froze as she saw the stick in Roo’s hand. “What are you doing with that?”

“I was kinda about to ask you that,”Roo replied.

Leah shook her head.“It’s nothing.”

“Leah, I know it’s been a long time since I’ve had to worry about this sort of thing but I know what one of these is.And I know how to tell whether it’s positive or not.There something you want to share with me?”

Leah seemed to spend a few seconds trying to think of an excuse, then she gave up and sighed. “Okay.Yes.I’m pregnant.”

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Thanks for all the comments!Going to be away for the weekend so sneaking an update in before I go.


Things had lapsed into silence somewhat after Leah’s admission.After all, the next obvious question was somewhat delicate.“I didn’t know you were seeing anyone,”Roo attempted.

“I’m not,”Leah confirmed.The comment didn’t need any elaboration but she offered it anyway.“It was a one-off thing.Not something I really do very often and I guess after this I’ll be even less likely.”

“Have you thought about what you’re going to do?”

“I’ve thought about it,”Leah agreed,“I’ve thought about having an abortion.”

Roo didn’t try to hide her surprise.“Really?”

“Well, me and pregnancies never seem to work out well.But on the other hand, this could be my one chance to have another baby.I know VJ’s missed out on having a little brother or sister around when he was growing up, if I wait any longer he’ll have left home.They’ll be virtual strangers.”

“Does the father know?”

Leah shook her head.“I haven’t told anyone.I wasn’t even sure until I took the test.”

“You know who it is then?I mean, it’s someone you know…”

“It’s Dex.”

The reply was so far outside what Roo had been expecting that it took a few seconds for it to click. “Dex?As in Dex Walker?Eighteen-year-old Dex Walker?”


“The guy who was practically my stepson?”

“Yes, thanks for making it sound as bad as possible.”

Roo checked herself.“Oh, I’m not saying he’s young enough to be your son or anything, you’re a fair bit younger than me.Dex?”Leah nodded.Roo tried to compose herself and carry on.“Well, if you’re going to keep the baby or even if you’re not, you should probably tell him…”

“I’m going to.”

That was easier than Roo had expected.“Oh!Good.”

“No, I mean I’m going to keep the baby.I wasn’t sure until I said it all out loud but…I can’t get rid of a child like that, no matter how messy the situation is.”

Roo nodded slowly.“And Dexter?”

Leah sighed.“Give me a bit more time to think about that one.”

Dexter and April were sitting on a wall down by the beach.Dexter let out a satisfied sigh.“This is the life.Sitting here basking in the sun, watching all the cool kids play out in the water and wishing I wasn’t too much of a wuss to join them…”

“You’re pretty cool,”April told him,“In a geeky kind of way.”

“Well, it’s nice of you to say so, I think, but…”

“Come on, accept a compliment.VJ thinks you’re pretty cool.”

“That’s because he’s too young to know better.Pretty soon he’ll think that Cuddly Uncle Dex is only good for giving him pocket money before he goes to see his friends.”

“You’re kidding, right?You’re the big brother he’s always wanted.And you’re good at lots of stuff. Like…trigonometry.”

“Yes, that’s really going to get me the cool vote.Sadly the awe-filled wonder tends to disappear once people go through puberty.Which VJ seems to be doing at a rather alarming rate.”

April favoured him with a smile.The sort of smile which had an unfortunate tendency to turn his insides to goo.“Well, some of us older kids still think you’re pretty cool.”

Leah could see Dexter sitting with April, the two of them sipping away at juices.It looked right:Dexter with someone his own age.The sort of person he should be having a child with, some years down the line.Not her, a single mother with a teenage son, who finished school the previous century.

She had almost resolved to turn and walk back the way she’d come when Dexter noticed her.“Leah, hey!Get you a juice?”

Leah gave a genuine smile.“No, thanks.I just…”She hesitated, wondering what to say.“I just wondered if you were still all right for VJ’s next tutoring session.”

“Well, yeah.Is there any reason why I wouldn’t be?”

“No, no reason.Just saw you there and thought I might as well come over and check.Hi, April.”

April nodded a greeting.“Hey.”

“Tell VJ I will be there with bells on ready to knock his socks off,”Dexter answered,“If you can find your way out of that curious metaphor.”

“I’ll tell him.”Leah turned away and left them to it.It wasn’t fair to tell Dexter while April was there. It should be done in private.That was what she was telling herself anyway.It was a conversation that was going to be more than a little awkward.

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Yes, I meant to stay at the start of that chapter, for anyone still wondering "Where do you get your ideas from?", this partly came out of thinking of a cool way for them to write Ada's pregnancy into the show. And this is what I came up with.

Ah! That make so much more sense now. Because I'm a massive Dex fan, as you know, and I could never in my wildest dreams have imagined this situation up.

I was also thinking about how Dexter seemed to be related to half the girls in his age group and wondering if there was someone outside his age group he could be paired with.The thoughts kind of collided.

Thank you, everyone, for your comments, hope you like this one.


Leah could hear Dexter and VJ talking in the other room.She’d considered interrupting them several times but every time she tried she found she couldn’t quite pluck up the courage.So she sat there, biding her time, waiting for the right opening.

“Mum!”VJ came through, Dexter just behind him.“I’m going round Eric’s now, if that’s okay.”

“That’s fine,”Leah confirmed,“Er, is Dexter going with you?”

VJ gave her a bemused look.“Why would Dexter be coming?”

“It’s fine,”Dexter sighed,“I’ll just mope on back home on my own and dream about what it would be like to have friends.”

“Actually, Dexter, could you stay for a bit?”Leah asked before she thought about it enough to stop herself,“There’s something I want to talk about.”

“Yeah, sure,”Dexter agreed, sounding surprised.

Leah waited until VJ had left before turning back to Dexter.“There’s something I need to tell you.” She took a deep breath.“I’m pregnant.”

Dexter gave her a delighted smile.“Congratulations!I’m sure you’ll be a great mum to bubba and I know VJ would love to have a little brother or sister to boss about…”Leah waited.Dexter’s smile slowly transformed into a worried frown.“Why are you telling me?”

“You’re the father.”

Dexter continued to frown worriedly.“Are you sure?”He must have noticed the flash of anger on Leah’s face because he hastily amended the comment.“Not that I’m suggesting anything, I just want to make sure that you are absolutely, 100% sure that I’m the father and there’s not the remotest chance…”

“I am absolutely, 100% sure that you’re the father and there’s not the remotest chance it could be someone else.”

Dexter nodded slowly.“Can I sit down?”Leah nodded and he sank into a chair.“Is there something I should be doing now?”he asked after a moment’s pause,“I mean, I’ve never been an expectant father before, am I supposed to smoke a cigar or something?”He had a sudden flash of inspiration.“Do I ask you to marry me?”

“No,”Leah told him firmly.If she was honest, she shared his uncertainty.She’d been so focused on telling him, she hadn’t really thought about what came next.“I just thought you should know.”

“I can see that.Thank you.”He sighed.“Can I go away and think about this?”

She nodded.“Yeah, of course.”

He got up slowly and walked to the door.Almost as an after thought, he turned back.“I meant what I said about you being a great mum.”

She smiled at him.“Thanks, Dex.”

Dexter sighed as he heard the voices of his dad and Indi drifting in through the front door.He’d got the fine art of sitting in the front room and brooding perfected but their arrival threatened to disturb his equilibrium.The pair entered the house and came into the room.Indi looked at him and he realised she’d picked up on his mood.“What are you looking so miserable about?”

“I’m not miserable.I’m thinking.”

“Oh yeah?What have you got to think about?”

Dexter noticed Sid seemed to be paying rapt attention to the conversation.He could have done without his father being involved at this stage but it seemed inevitable.“About the fact Leah just told me she’s going to have a baby and guess what?It’s mine.”

Indi was definitely thrown at that.“You got Leah pregnant?How did that happen?”

Dexter scowled at her.“The usual way.”


Sid was less easy to disarm.“You slept with Leah?”

“Not really the issue now, Dad,”Dexter pointed out,“Things have moved on.”

“This isn’t a laughing matter,”Sid snapped,“This is serious.You’re talking about something really grown up here.You’ve got responsibilities.”

“Thanks, Dad, I wasn’t freaking out enough but now I am.”

“You don’t have time to freak out, there’s a woman and a baby out there who need you to start acting like an adult.”

“I think he knows that, Dad,”Indi interceded gently.

The words seemed to have an affect on Sid and calm him slightly.“Just…just so long as you know that this is something you’re going to have to deal with for the rest of your life,”he finished.

Dexter sighed.“I think I need to clear my head for a bit.”He got up and headed out of the house.

Dexter had to admire the public transport system.And also his own rather curious sense of priorities. Faced with a desire for solitude, he’d somehow found himself back in town, hoping no-one would notice him and stop to chat.

“Hey there, Dex!”

Dexter winced inwardly at Xavier’s shout and looked round to see Xavier and April approaching his personal stretch of wall.They sat down on opposite sides of him.He found himself looking at April, noticing the smile she gave him and bemoaning the cruel twists fate took at times.

“So, anything interesting happen today?”Xavier asked.

Dexter sighed.“Well, I found out I’m going to be a father, does that qualify as interesting?”

They both stared at him.“What?”April asked, flabbergasted.

Xavier was a bit better informed.“Is this anything to do with that older woman of yours?”

Dexter nodded.“Uh-huh.”

“Older woman?”April was still struggling to catch up.“What older woman?”


This was news to Xavier.“You slept with Leah?”

Dexter nodded.

“You slept with Leah?!”April demanded.

Dexter winced.“What, is there an echo around here now?”

“You slept with Leah and she’s pregnant?!”April persisted.

Dexter sighed.“Yep, that’s about it.”


“I dunno, I heard sleeping with people a lot older than you is in this year.”

April clearly didn’t appreciate the sarcasm.She looked at Xavier.“I’ll see you later,”she told him before walking off.

Xavier and Dexter sat in silence for a few moments.“Have you any idea what you’re going to do?” Xavier asked at last.


“I wish I could help you but…”

“But, despite having slept with a lot more people than me a lot more times than me, you’ve never got anyone pregnant.”

Xavier gave a rueful smile.“Yeah, it sounds a bit unfair when you say it like that.”

“Unfortunately life is unfair, my friend.”

They sat in companionable silence a bit longer.“You are going to do something though?”Xavier attempted.

Dexter sighed.“When I decide what to do, yes.”

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Thank you, everyone, for your comments.Hope you like this one.


Leah had known it wouldn’t be long before someone knocked on her door.And when they did, she wasn’t surprised who it was.“Can I come in?”Sid asked.

Leah gave a nervous smile by way of invitation.“Is this about what I think it is?”

“If you mean the fact that you’re carrying my grandchild, then yes.”

Hearing him put it like that made it suddenly seem very stark and real.“I hope you don’t think I took advantage of Dexter or anything, I’m sorry I didn’t put a stop to things…”

“I admit that thought did cross my mind.But I’m very aware that if, when I was Dexter’s age, I’d found myself in that situation with someone like you, I wouldn’t have needed to be taken advantage of.”Sid gave a rueful smile.“Not that I expected Dexter to act like me, of course.I always thought Indi or Sasha were more likely to be the first to make me a grandfather.”

“He’s a good kid,”Leah said softly,“You should be proud of him.”

“I am.Even if I’m not sure he knows it at times.So…I’ll skip the angry dad bit.All I care about is making sure that Dexter and the baby are all right.And you.”

Leah hadn’t expected that.“Me?”

Sid smiled gently.“I’m not that much of an ogre and I don’t think you’re the villain of the piece here.I realise this is hard on you too.”

“Thanks,”she replied genuinely,“But I’ll be all right.”

“Then I guess all that’s left to say is…talk to Dexter.”

“I tried that before and he seemed a bit overwhelmed.”

“Then I guess it’s up to us to underwhelm him.”

Dexter supposed it said something about his thought processes that he’d ended up in the Diner, nursing a milkshake.It was, after all, where Leah worked, given that she owned it, and therefore where one might go if they were nursing a subconscious desire to see her.

So he probably shouldn’t have been surprised when Leah stopped by his table and asked,“Can I speak with you in the kitchen?”

Dexter picked up his milkshake and followed her, draining the last dregs of his drink through a straw as he did so.

Roo reacted with surprise, but perhaps not as much as Dexter was expecting, as they came in. “Should I..?”She gestured towards the door they’d just come in by.

“If you wouldn’t mind,”Leah agreed,“And can you make sure Colleen keeps away as well?”

Roo gave an understanding nod and pushed past them, heading out to the Diner floor.

“She knows?”Dexter asked.

Leah nodded.“How many people have you told?”

“Just Dad.And Indi.And Sasha.And Xavier and April.”He tried to give her as placating a look as possible.

“Who haven’t you told?”she asked tartly.

“I don’t think I mentioned anything to the River Boys.”

“Right.”She took a deep breath.“Does all that make this seem real to you?”

“Scarily and palm-sweatingly real.I mean…you’ve got my baby in there.I’m a dad.And I have absolutely no idea what that means.I think I should feel different or do something different but whenever I try and think of something I kind of draw a blank.”He made a nervous gesturing moment with his hands.“Help me out here?”

Leah smiled.“I think that you’re behaving pretty much the way a first time parent should.They say you’ve got all sorts of instincts as a parent and…I think when you finally get to meet Junior in here, you’ll probably do okay.”

“Really?”Dexter pondered this.“Well, I won’t pretend it’s not a relief to hear you say that.Even if I do have a sneaking suspicion you’re just humouring me.”

“Well…how about you take on your first fatherly duty?”

Dexter looked at her cautiously.“What did you have in mind?”

“Well, there’s someone who needs to know about all this and it might help if you’re there when I tell them.”



“Oh.”Dexter looked at her sympathetically.“Oh, yeah, that’s not gonna be fun.”

“Sit down, Veej,”Leah invited, sitting him next to her on the couch, with Dexter sitting the other side of her, ready to back her up.

VJ looked at their serious faces nervously.“Something’s happened, hasn’t it?”

“Yes, it has,”Leah confirmed,“But it’s not necessarily a bad thing.It could be a really good thing.If you let it.”

VJ didn’t look entirely convinced.“What?”

“I’m pregnant!”Leah tried to say it with a smile.

VJ didn’t reciprocate.Instead, he looked rather shocked.“But you’re not…But you haven’t…”He took a deep breath before asking “Who’s the father?”

Slowly and awkwardly, Dexter raised his hand.

VJ turned back to Leah angrily.“You’re joking, right?”

“I realise this is probably a bit of a shock,”Leah attempted.

“You think?You always do this.Every time I make a new friend you have to spoil it by sleeping with them.He’s going to leave now!”VJ got up and stormed out.

Leah made to go after him but Dexter stopped her.“I’ll go.”

“Are you sure?”Leah asked.

“Yeah.I think this needs a little man-to-man chat.Give me a chance to practise those fatherly duties.”

Dexter found VJ sitting on the beach, staring out to sea.He took a deep breath, walked over and sat down next to him.“Hey, Veej,”he greeted him as jovially as possible.VJ just glared at him.“Bit of a shock back there, eh?Bet you weren’t expecting that.”

“You slept with my mum,”VJ said accusingly.

“Yeah, that’s the way it normally happens.What can I say, your mum’s hot.”He sighed.“This isn’t what you want to be hearing, is it?”

“Not really.”


They stared out to the sea in silence for a few moments.“Mum’s boyfriends always end up leaving,” VJ said at last.

“I’m not her boyfriend!”Dexter protested.

“Well, that’s even worse!Now you’ve got no reason to stay around.”


“That never works.She’ll lose it and you’ll go.”

Dexter sighed.“You haven’t had a lot of luck with your mum’s boyfriends, have you?”

VJ shook his head.

“If I promise none of that will happen, you wouldn’t believe me, would you?”

He shook his head again.

“Okay.So I might get hit on the head with a rock and die and your mum might lose the baby and you’ll both be unhappy for the rest of your lives.But we might not.Maybe in a few years’ time, I’ll be kicking a ball about with your little brother or sister on this beach and getting embarassed that they’re only six years old and they’re already better than me and they’ll be begging for their big brother VJ to join in with them.So, until calamity strikes, maybe we can try looking on the bright side?”

VJ shrugged but managed a smile.“I suppose so.”


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Dexter knocked uncertainly on the back door.Despite the situation he and Leah had found themselves in, he wasn’t clear what the ground rules were on visitation rights.He’d been a regular visitor to the house for the last few weeks but that didn’t necessarily mean he had the right to walk in whenever he wanted.

“Hello?”he called out,“Expectant father in the house?”

VJ came through.“Thank goodness you’re here, you can take over.”

The comment made Dexter suddenly nervous.“Take over?Take over what?”

“See you later” was VJ’s only answer as he made a hurried exit.

Cautiously, Dexter went through into the lounge.Leah was sitting on the sofa, holding her head with an agonised expression on her face.“What’s the matter?”Dexter asked.

“Take your pick.I’m sick to my stomach, my head hurts and my ankles ache.”

“Am I supposed to gee you up by telling you it’ll all be worth it when you’re holding a cute little baby in your arms?”Leah glared at him and he shrugged.“Worth a try.”

“I appreciate you coming round, Dex, but really there’s nothing you can do.”

“Oh yes?”Dexter sat down at the opposite end of the sofa to her.“Try me.”He patted his lap.Leah looked at him in confusion, then went to lay her head in his lap.“Feet,”he corrected hastily.

Leah reversed the movement, leaning against the chair arm and swinging her legs up to rest her feet on his lap.“Really, Dex, there’s no need.”

“Ah-ha!Let me be the judge of that.”Dexter flexed his hands and begin massaging her feet and ankles.

“Do you actually know what you’re doing?”Leah asked after a few moments.

“No idea.It always looks so easy.Do you feel any better?”he asked hopefully.

“A bit,”she answered encouragingly.

Dexter clicked his fingers.“I’ve got it!Camomile tea.That’s what you need.”

“We haven’t got any.”

“Simple as!I’ll buy some.I’m not so hard up I can’t afford to go shopping.”Dexter reached into his pocket, took out his wallet and checked the contents.“How much is it?”

Leah sighed.“I’ve got my purse in my bag…”

“No, no,”Dexter assured her,“I can do this.I can buy the mother of my child a nice soothing drink in order to rid her of the many aches and pains she’s suffering as a result of bringing a new life into the world.”He slid out from underneath her outstretched legs and got to his feet.“I just need to get to a cashpoint first.”

Dexter made his way back along the path near the beach.In the end, the quick trip to the store to purchase the camomile hadn’t been as big a chore as he’d expected and he was clutching the jar tightly as he walked.He glanced out across the sand and saw Xavier and April standing together in their bathers, laughing and joking about something.

Dexter had seen them together a lot, ever since Sasha had dumped Xavier for Casey.Usually they were laughing and joking.Occasionally they were touching.Actually, quite often they were touching. There was something about their body language that told him there was more to it than that but asking Are you sleeping together? had always seemed inappropriate.Oddly, despite the fact he’d been thinking of getting back with April himself not too long ago, he found he didn’t mind.Since everything with Leah, that didn’t really seem that important.

Xavier noticed him and said something to April who didn’t seem that keen on what he was suggesting.All the same, Xavier came running towards him, with April lagging somewhat reluctantly behind.

“Hey, you want to come and hang out with us for a bit?”Xavier asked.

Dexter gave an awkward shrug.“Better not.”He held up the jar of camomile.“Got to get this back to Leah.”


“How is she?”April asked, sounding like she was trying to be polite.

“Pregnant,”Dexter answered,“I think everything else is pretty normal in the circumstances but I haven’t really had that much experience of being around pregnant women.Even when Nicole was expecting, I pretty much stayed out of it.”

Xavier patted him on the arm.“Just hang in there, mate.I know a lot of idiots who’ve become fathers and most of them have actually done okay.I mean, who’d have thought John would be so good at it?I certainly didn’t.”He looked at April.“Right?”

Dexter was expecting at best an awkwardly polite response.But instead she gave him the first genuine smile she’d given him since he’d told her about Leah’s pregnancy.“You’ll be great, Dex.” Dexter smiled back and felt a certain relief.It seemed like there’d finally been a thaw between them.

Then April turned and kissed Xavier on the cheek.“I just want to get a drink from the surf club. Back in a bit.”

Dexter looked at the smile they exchanged and the way Xavier’s eyes followed her as she walked away from them.He cleared his throat and looked at his friend.“Are you sleeping together?”

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