|I stare at her.
Trying to process what she just said.
It started as a joke. We'd never actually considered that my father wasn't really my father. But it was a possibility now. My mother just confirmed it. It was possible. Everything I thought I knew about myself might not be true. People I've called my family, my blood, might just be ordinary people who came into my life by chance. Mere victims of circumstance. They might not be any closer to me than my best friend. Like, sure they know things about me, because they were there, but maybe they were just there. Like I was just there. Just a baby brought into this world that can be so cruel and so fucking beautiful it hurts.
Rapid thoughts flying as I try to brush it off like she does. Of course he's my dad. I sort of look like him and I definitely act like him. But I know that doesn't mean much. My friend Amanda is adopted and looks exactly like her adoptive mother. Looking alike doesn't mean shit to biology. I know I can't ask her. I know I can't ask him. Our lives are built on lies and she's taking them apart one by one.
If he's not my dad, who is? That guy she dated that she later saw homeless outside a Hardee's? Some other loser? Because she really only dated losers. As far as suitable fathers go, I could have done much better. I also could have done much worse. My dad, or the man I have believed was my father for the past twenty years, won't be winning any father of the year prizes. But I know from her stories, the guys who came before weren't any better.
It would be so much easier to pretend I never heard her say it. Pretend she was just kidding. But I know she wasn't. I know it's a possibility. And that's all I need to wonder. To imagine how different my life could be. I'll never ask her. I'll never find out for sure. But I'll wonder.