Name: The Question
Spoilers: Coda to Season 1, Episode 3,"The Deep End of the Pool"
Notes: This is one scenario of how I imagine Crosby might tell Katy that he has a son. I'm sure the show will let her in on the secret here soon (probably next week) but some details in "The Deep End of the Pool" set my brain to cooking up ideas.
The band Happy Hollows was wrapping up their day in the studio. By all indications, they were pleased by the way the session had gone. Especially tfheir lead singer, Sarah.
"So, yeah. I guess our manager will probably get with you tomorrow about the masters and all that, but from the playback we just heard, well…thanks Katy. I think I speak for the guys too when I say recording here today…well, we just really feel like you get what we're trying to do—and that means so much."
Katy was polishing off a glass of chocolate milk she had been nursing for hours. "We're thrilled when exciting bands come through the door. Especially ones that are so distinctly Californian. We would love to be a part of getting you where you wanna be."
"Great," Sarah said while nodding and taking a look around. "And where's Crosby? We want to thank him, too, before we head out."
"Yeah, um, Crosby," Katy said, scratching her eyebrow. "He had to skip out a little early. Said he had to take a friend home or something. I think he might be back later tonight to do some work on the bass tracks."
"Ah," Katie said. "And would that 'friend' be his assistant sound engineer by any chance?"
"Yeah right," Katy said incredulously. "We're a smaller studio. We generally can't afford 'assistant' anythings around here." She laughed a little.
"No, I know," Sarah said. "I was talking about his son."
Katy looked on with amused confusion.
"Son?" She giggled a little. "Son?"
"Yeah, the little boy that was with him. I mean, that was his son right?"
"No," she laughed, shaking her head. "Crosby doesn't have a son."
"Oh really?" Sarah looked….surprised. "Wow. I guess he's just really great with kids."
"Since when?" Katy asked. That statement was even funnier than the last. He was barely out of infancy himself. Sure, he'd had experience with his nieces and nephews, but Katy had never seen show any paternal…aptitude.
"No seriously," Sarah continued, "I mean, he didn't say it was his son, but by the way he looked at him and the way they were interacting…I thought it was. But what do I know? Anyway, tell him we said bye. Actually, we're thinking about him editing a live album for us, but the logistics with those can always be tough. And we didn't know whether to just record one date, or to do a composite album from the best of several dates. So we may need him again depending on how it goes at South by Southwest this week." She paused. "I mean that's OK, right Katy?...Katy?"
But Katy was in a trance, her mind obviously elsewhere. "What was that?" she asked at last.
"Nevermind. You're tired. It's late. We'll talk tomorrow." The two women shook hands, and then the guys. And they left.
Jabbar was fast asleep by the time Jasmine arrived to pick him up. He was sprawled on Crosby's lap while Crosby watched the water—and maybe the stars—float by.
"I am so sorry I'm late," she said. "I know I said I'd be back by 7—"
"It's fine," Crosby said. "I don't have anywhere to be."
"The call-back auditions ran over and then the traffic was just so bad coming back from the city," she explained. "It was like the Olympics and a Stones concert and a presidential motorcade all wrapped into one."
"It's fine," Crosby said again, gingerly raising Jabbar's head before lifting the boy. He stood up with a grimace.
"He's heavy, I know," Jasmine said.
"No, it's not that," Crosby grunted. "It's just my legs are asleep."
"Ouch," Jasmine winced. She looked around. "Where's his stuff?"
"In the house," he replied. "The door's open."
Jasmine jogged off to grab Jabbar's book bag and games as Crosby made his way to the car. He laid him across the back seat and then just stood there…watching him in peaceful slumber.
"Crosby, um, he needs to be in the booster seat."
"Right," Crosby said with a sigh. He opened the back door and slowly tried to pull the boy back up. Jabbar resisted a little, but didn't wake.
"I mean, did you all go anywhere today?" she said, while she put the seat in.
"Um, just drove around some," Crosby shrugged.
"And you used the booster seat then, right?" she asked.
"Of course," Crosby lied. "What kind of dad do you think I am?" Jasmine showed a faint look of doubt. Meanwhile, he made a mental note to not make that mistake again. He eased Jabbar into the seat and Jasmine buckled him in.
"Thanks again Crosby," she said. He nodded and she got in the car before driving off.
Crosby was still standing there a minute later when Katy pulled up. The narrow timing made his chest hurt.
"Hey baby," he cooed as she got out of the car. She advanced up the walk a little, but was still a ways off when she just stopped. "So you're just gonna stay down there?" he joked. "Make me come to you like some kind of punk?" She didn't say anything. "I can do that," he said, approaching her.
"Can we talk?" she asked abruptly. He stopped.
"Um…sure?" he replied. She marched passed him towards the boat and, a second later, he followed.
When he got inside, she was standing in the middle of the floor, glancing around as if she were looking for something.
"Can I get you some…" He took a glance around his fridge. "Grape juice?" he asked.
"So, um, Sarah," she began, ignoring the question. Crosby took this as an invitation to drink alone, and opened a Sam Adams. "You all chatted earlier?"
"Um," he said, gulping down a healthy sip. "Not…not really. No."
"Huh," she said. She took a seat on the couch, but still seemed antsy. "But she still managed to meet Jabbar?"
Crosby shrugged. "Yeah."
"You told her his name was Jabbar?"
Crosby looked confused. "I guess. I mean, that's his name."
"And not just Bar?"
"Guess that's his nickname."
Karen glanced away for a moment, and Crosby used the opportunity to catch his breath. What was Katy getting at? There was no way in hell she would even suspect the truth…was there?
"I guess…um," Crosby tried to change the subject. "So how did the session with the band end up? Were they pleased?"
Katy was having none of it.
"So how did you know he was lactose intolerant?"
"Well...she mentioned it."
"She?" Katie repeated.
"One of the girls."
"From up front, right? Which girl?"
"Yes, Crosby, which girl? Who does Jabbar belong to?" Every time she said the name, Crosby imagined himself wincing. This was quickly turning into the worst conversation of his life.
"Karen. Karen's niece...or nephew."
"He's Karen's niece's or nephew's child?"
"No he's Karen's nephew."
"Really? Because Sarah somehow thought he was your son."
Crosby sprayed beer all over the place. "What the hell?"
"I'm gonna ask you only once, and if you lie to me, Crosby Braverman, I swear to God I will walk out of that door and never come back."
The two stared at each other for a long while; Katie was panting hard and painful anticipation was written on her face. Crosby looked like a deer in headlights and the way he was holding on for dear life to the beer in his hand made him look even more ridiculous.
"Well?" Katy prodded impatiently after a long minute.
"So what's the question?" he replied.
Katy got up and bolted for the door. Crosby jumped in front of her.
"Wait Katy, let me explain."
"Let you explain?" she yelled. "Let you explain!" She dropped her head in her heads, reeling. "Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh. My. GOD!"
"Katy, I can explain this," he said, taking her hand. She snatched it away.
"I've been begging…pleading for you to have a baby with me. To have a child with you,"--he beginnings of tears were welling in her eyes--"and you made me wait, and wait, and wait. And you've had a child all along?"
"Katy, I didn't know."
"I feel like such an idiot."
"I am so sorry."
"What? Did you go and pick him up the second I got on the plane?"
"Here you are having play dates, and visitation…just everything, behind my back."
"It wasn't behind your back Katy," he protested.
"I know…it was right in front of my face." She backed away slowly. "I am such an idiot."
"You're not an idiot." He reached for her, but pulled away. "Katy, I'm super sorry."
"How could you….how could a person look someone they supposedly love, right in the face and lie like that…everyday…for years." Her voice broke on the last words and she sunk to the floor, her face in her hands. Crosby sank next to her.
"It hasn't been years, Katy," Crosby pleaded. "Please hear me out." Katy was full on crying now. "Look Jasmine showed up on my door."
Katy's head snapped up. "Jasmine?"
"She's my ex from way back, before I ever met you."
"Oh my God," Katy said. She stood and backed away from Crosby in horror, like there was a tarantula on his face.
"She showed up here, not even two weeks ago, with Jabbar and was just like 'this is your son.' I was completely shocked. I hadn't seen or heard from her since I last saw her six years ago—"
"Six years ago," Katy repeated breathlessly. She dropped her head in her hands. "He has a six year old."
"He's only…five," Crosby murmured, then quickly continued. "It was so all of sudden…and." He sighed hard. "I just didn't know what to tell you."
"How about the truth, Crosby? How about you tell the damn truth for once in your damn life?" she yelled. Crosby just sighed turning away. "How could you lie to me like that?"
"How could I tell you the truth?" he yelled. "God, Katy." He shook his head and walked away. He stood in the doorway, looking out onto the pier. A moment later he turned around. "I've screwed up…big time. And if you wanna leave me, I understand. But," he turned away. "I had this whole thing planned out about how I was gonna tell you…I mean I was terrified but I was gonna do it. I had it all planned out and everything, but…when you showed up today…Gosh, I was just caught off guard. I panicked."
Katy stared at him for a moment, completely spent. She rose slowly, got her purse and began to walk to the door.
"Wait," Crosby said as she approached. "I mean, what now?"
"I gotta go," she said, shoving past him.
"You don't wanna stay and talk about this?"
She snapped around, "No Crosby. I don't want to stay and talk about this." She gave him a sneering look. "You just don't get it, do you?" She shook her head and left. Crosby watched as she walked away.