Penelope and Josie woke up and spent some time cuddling in bed. Josie was holding Penelope and tracing her fingers over her wife's arm.
''I wish we could stay all day in our bubble… I am not ready to see my sister and Hope… And MG… How will I look him in the eyes?''
''Baby, it's not something that you are responsible for. It's Lizzie's and Hope's betrayal.''
''And our too in a way…We haven't told him.''
''Well, I never said anything to you before the wedding… That keeps you in the clear.''
''I know, but…''
''Babe, it's not our secret to tell. If we tell, we would be blamed for everything.''
Josie was silent for a moment.
''I am afraid how my parents would take it. ''
''Yes, your dad loves Hope more than two of you. I bet he would blame Lizzie for corrupting his perfect Hope.''
Josie made pouty face and hit Penelope's hand.
''You are mean! Our dad loves us.''
''He does, but both you and Lizzie keep saying he loves Hope the most.''
''I hate you sometimes.''
''I love you too Jojo…''
Penelope closed her eyes and had giant smile on her face. Josie narrowed her eyes at her wife and pinched her.
''Auch! That hurts!''
''You are enjoying this too much Penelope Park. My family might fall apart and you are thinking about how will my mom and dad react to Lizzie's affair.''
''Come on! Lizzie falling from her high horse. Not being perfect daddy's girl… I've been waiting for this for so long baby. Maybe they will finally see how amazing you are and that you are not just a passerby in their lives.''
Josie got serious. She knew Penelope had a lot of issues with her parents and the way they behave toward her and how compared to Lizzie she sometimes is invisible. She lifted Penelope's chin and kissed her.
''Thank you baby… Thank you for always seeing me and seeing what I need…even when I refused to be seen and my needs to be recognized. I am lucky to have you and I can't tell you how grateful I am to have you in my corner.''
''I will always be in your corner.''
They kissed again and Josie smiled at her.
''Do you want some coffee babe?''
''Yes… But I don't want to move. I don't want to get out of bed.''
''Well, we have to.''
''P, I have to use the restroom and I am pretty sure you don't want me to do what I have to do in bed.''
''You are right… I love this mattress too much…and it was expensive.''
Josie started laughing at her wife and pushed her away. She got out of bed and Penelope got comfortable to follow with her eyes Josie walking around their room naked searching for her robe. Josie knew Penelope was looking at her. Before she entered the bathroom she turned and as expected, saw her wife looking at her in adoration and with a very familiar lip bight.
''Hey! You are the one walking around naked.''
''Forever sixteen Jojo.''
As soon as Josie got into bathroom, Penelope left the bed and put on her robe. She went to kitchen and started coffee and making them something to eat. Usually, when they had slow weekends, they would eat fruit with some pancakes and have coffee. When Josie came to the kitchen, her wife was already in the middle of the cooking. She poured coffee for both of them and carried it to the table. She took her seat and watched Penelope cook. Penelope finished making food and Josie set the table. They started eating and in the middle of the meal Josie just looked at her wife.
''What will we do at this lunch?''
''What do you mean?''
''I mean, we will act normal and when you get some alone time with either of them, you will tell them that you know.''
''I don't want to argue… I don't think I have it in me to start a war now.''
''Not a war baby… You are just telling them that you know… And they have to resolve it somehow.''
''I am not happy about this lunch.''
''Neither am I, but we will be ok… ''
''Yes, we are a team Jojo… We are the Parks….no one messes with me and my wife. If Leach even tries to say a word… I…''
Josie smiled at her wife.''
''I love you so much babe. You are my dark knight in shining armor.''
''I am many things babe.''
''Yes, you are.''
Their moment was interrupted by Josie's phone. She got up from the chair and Penelope mumbled took them long enough. She knew it was some family member. As expected, it was Caroline. She was calling to tell Josie that lunch was moved to two instead three they agreed on.
''Ok mom. Thank you… Oh, and can you ask them for one more seat. Penelope is coming with me. She is so impatient to see the newlyweds… She is so sorry she missed the wedding.''
Caroline was not stupid. She knew that Josie was being sarcastic. She also knew that there was something Penelope was hiding about Lizzie. She had no idea if Josie knew the secret Penelope was keeping. She wanted to know what her daughter in law had about her daughter. She had impression that Penelope was holding on to something until it's good time for her to use the information for something she might need. She feared that it might harm Lizzie somehow and she didn't want anyone to hurt her or risk ruining her marriage to MG. She was very proud he waited for her for so long and that he always treated her like a queen.
''Jo… Can you please ask Penelope to be polite today? We don't want a happy family lunch to turn into some battlefield.''
''Mom… She will behave if Lizzie doesn't provoke.''
''Jo, it's your sister's day…''
Josie couldn't believe what her mother said. She mumbled, what day isn't? and Caroline pretended this didn't hear that. Both women knew what was said and what was the meaning of it, but Josie chose to ignore it. Caroline ended the conversation and Josie went back to the kitchen. Penelope already did the dishes and cleared the table. Josie put her arms around her and put her head on Penelope's shoulder.
''What is it love?''
''I am not in a mood for my family and their crap.''
''I know… Neither am I.''
When the time came, they got ready and headed for the restaurant. As expected, it was Lizzie's choice and it was one of the more expensive places. She loved showing off and MG was determined to give her everything she needed. Penelope felt a bit lazy to get dressed up, so she picked simple black dress and black shoes and her hair was pulled back. She didn't often have her hair down, but today she felt like it. Josie was in her favorite yellow dress and shoes that matched the dress. She put on very little makeup and they left the house. As expected, they arrived on time and they were not surprised to Rick and Caroline sitting at the table. They greeted each other and took their seats. Alaric started some very casual conversation and they all participated, waiting for bride and groom to come. After Penelope and Josie, arrived Hope. She was texting someone with a huge smile on her face and all of them noticed that. Josie and Penelope exchanged looks that they agree that she must be texting Lizzie. Rick and Caroline were surprised there was someone in Hope's life since she haven't mentioned dating someone in months. Caroline simply had to ask about who was on the other side of the conversation. She was rooting for Hope to find someone and also marry nice just as her two daughters were. Caroline and Penelope were…complicated…but Caroline appreciated what Penelope was doing for Josie and how much she loved her. Parents never stopped looking for a cure, but Penelope was convinced they were not doing enough. She was doing her researches on the side and she was also running into dead ends, but she was not giving up hope that Josie will live after her 22nd birthday. She hoped she will, because she didn't want to live without Josie. MG and Lizzie were about thirty minutes late. When they showed up, it was clear that MG was not comfortable about being late and Lizzie simply didn't care.
MG pulled Penelope into hug and told her that he missed her yestudrday. She apologized for not coming and told him that she loves him very much. He responded with a grin and his famous Peeeezzzzzzz and pulled her back into his hug.
''Satan leave my husband alone. That is enough and inappropriate.''
''You would know…''
Josie just gave her a look and the rest of the table has gone quiet. Caroline was getting inpatient with her daughter in law.
''What does that mean Penelope?''
''It means that she should know what inappropriate behavior is.. She has been inappropriate for who knows how long.''
''You are suggesting something?''
''No, I am just speaking from experience… You missed many years of Lizzie's brilliant behavior.''
Josie took her wife's hand and squeezed it.
''Please, let's not.''
Hope was not looking happy either with this conversation and MG was confused. She put her napkin on the table and looked at Penelope.
''P, can we speak in private?''
Before she could answer, Josie spoke up.
''No, no one is speaking in private now. Now we are having family lunch. All the things you want to tell Penelope, tell her after we are done. I am sick and tired of everyone constantly separating and talking in the corners. Every lunch someone leaves to whisper in the corners. You either tell it in front of all of us, or you wait for lunch to be done. ''
Penelope just smiled and whispered to her wife.
''I think it's very sexy to see you so bossy.''
''You would know P.''
''Oh, I know.''
They shared a small peck and smiled at each other. MG interrupted their moment.
''So, Peez… Any advice on how to have a good marriage?''
Now all eyes were on them. Rick and Caroline were waiting to hear what Penelope has to say.
''Well, I can't say much… There is no useful advice to make your marriage work.''
Lizzie gave her a look and took his hand.
''What does that mean?''
Penelope wanted to say something, but Josie stopped.
''What Penelope is saying is that there is nothing she could say… Every marriage and relationship is different. There is no universal way how to make it work. Every couple has their own dynamic and ways they cope with things.''
Penelope smiled and nodded. She knew that it was Josie's save. She didn't want everyone to find out what they knew over very expensive food.
''What Josie said… I can't give you advice, because I can only speak about my relationship with Josie. Maybe what you need is something else. Something different than what makes us work. Something that is MG and Lizzie way to make marriage good. I have no idea what that is, because I don't know what is really like being in your relationship, as much as you have no idea what is it like to be with me and Jojo.''
MG understood what his friends were saying.
''And what makes you work?''
Penelope didn't get a chance to answer because Josie did. She smiled and smirked and Penelope knew she had something wicked on her mind.
''What works of us is sex… We never go to bed angry and without having sex at least once a day…''
She laced her fingers with Penelope's and smiled at her.
''So, that is my recommendations Lizzie and MG… Have a lot of sex… with each other and it will be as amazing as we have it.''
''And as newlyweads, I am guessing that tour advice sounds very appealing. I remember when Jojo and I got married.''
''You could hardly get us out of the room for first few montsh… School and classes were getting in a way of our marriage all the time.''
''But we managed to sneak some alone time once or few times a day.''
''I so didn't want to know about your sex life with my sister…''
''Well, your husband asked.''
MG looked at them.
''So, sex… And what else?''
''Honest conversations. We managed to survive some very bad things thanks to choosing to be honest. I love Josei very much, but got better since we really started talking about our issues.''
''Fighting is bad, but making up part… That's worth it.''
Penelope smirked at her wife. She knew Josie was teasing her sister and Hope with these comments. She was not sure if she wanted them to confess or just suffer in silence knowing she knows. Josie blushed a bit after the look Penelope gave her and the looks the rest of the table made. Lizzie's face was everything. She didn't like the talk. Josie noticed it and smirked.
''What is it? Can't wait to get home and get it on with your husband?''
Lizzie hissed at her sister.
''What? Y We all know what happens in first few months of marriage… You are acting out like crazy teenager wanting your partner all the time. At least we did.''
''You WERE teenagers when you got married Josie. You and Penelope couldn't keep your hands to yourself… You still can't.''
''You are right Lizzie… We were teens… but we are not now. So, my beloved sister. I wish you and MG long and happy marriage filled with adventure, passion, love, children and above all a lot of sex. It does magic in your relationship.''
It took some time for Lizzie to raise her glass and join toast. She looked at Josie who gave her meaningful look.
That is when Lizzie knew that Josie was saying this because she knows about the affair. She just froze and lowered her gaze. She couldn't look at Josie… She felt so many things at the same time. She just wanted this lunch to end so she could leave.