“Really? You felt the urge to get into a fist fight with an old man? To engage in hand to hand combat with an O.A.P? What’s wrong with you?”

“You weren’t there, honey! You didn’t see how it happened, he just pulled out of his parking space and…”

“So you decided that the most prudent course of action was to start throwing windmills. You should be embarrassed and this on the day that I’m taking you to meet my parents. You have impeccable timing, Phil.”

This was exactly the curve ball that Jill Winstead didn’t need. She had spent the past few weeks carefully laying out plans to make her new boyfriend’s introduction to her overbearing father run as smoothly as possible. Introducing her dad to a new boyfriend was more intricate and volatile than trying to mediate peace in the Middle East. She sure as hell didn’t expect a phone call from Phil, the boyfriend in question, asking her to come bail him out of jail. Especially since she only sent him to buy a six pack of Bud – a peace offering to her father of his favourite beer – while she prepped herself further in the mirror. No siree, this wasn’t going to plan. She now had to go round up Phillip from jail and then, Already late, Jill and her fight club impersonating squeeze needed to go straight from police station to her childhood home. Not ideal but also not disasterous. Atleast he hadn’t picked up any visible wounds in his battle with the old age homes finest. The drive from the station to her parent’s abode had remained pretty quiet. Right up until they were getting close to their destination and Jill felt the time was ripe for one final pep talk.

“You need to buck up, I’ve spent the past two weeks tellin’ you what kinda hardass my dad is and you go do this. ”

“If you’ll just let me tell you about that old fu…”

“I don’t give a shit Phillip, now you gotta reign your neck in  ’cause you about to step into the dragon’s den. You mess up this first impression and he will not give you another chance. That’s a guarantee. You got me?

“Yeah, I got you.”

“I need your help here sweetie. I want my dad to like you, OK. Just be on your best behaviour and you’ll be aces high.”

“Affirmative.”

How did this even happen?”

“Well, like I was trying to say earlier, I was driving on outta the car park when this old dude just slingshots out of his space and smacks into me. I get out out of my car in a conciliatory mood but this guy had the rage. He’s easily the angriest old man I’ve ever seen in my life. He climbs out of his shit wagon and starts throwin’ bombs. I couldn’t believe it.”

“Why in God’s name did you start fighting back?”

“Hell, he was whipping my ass that’s why. This old dude could fight, I’ll tell ya that much. I held out for a bit but I wasn’t on for getting a beating. So we traded blows for a short while before passers by broke us up. They all took the side of the old man, of course, and ratted me out as the culprit when the law came along.”

They had pulled into Pleasance street and were moving at a steady pace toward their journey’s end. Talk had teetered out by the time Jill was ascending her parents steep driveway and came to a stop. Phil Fulmer, however, knew enough about self preservation to apologise to his lady friend before they reached the door.

“Look, I screwed up. I know how much this means to you that I make a good impression here and I should’ve kept my cool. I love you and today’s gonna be fine. I will the act the gent and complement your moms cooking and all that. I’m sorry that I nearly let some old bastard in a red bronco ruin wha..”

“D’you say red bronco?”

“Yeah, a red bronco. A old bastard in a red bronco. Why?”

“No, it can’t be.”

“What can’t be? What’s wrong?”

Jill had pressed the door bell as Phil was apologizing. It all dawned on her as she heard her dad’s typically bombastic footsteps come into the foyer. The front door swung open. Still looking at Jills anguished face and absolutely perplexed, it took Phillip a while to look up at the figure standing inside the door frame. When he finally did gaze upon the person, he recognised him immediately.

“Ah fuck no.”

It was that old bastard in the red  Ford bronco.

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