Title: Down
Spoiliers: Season 1, Episodes 1 - 6
Disclaimer: I don't own Parenthood or much else for that matter.
Rated: T+

The day was hot, hotter than normal for even late spring, and Crosby could feel his skin peel away from the leather of his convertible as he got out. Jabbar climbed out over the window, as he had started doing lately, and skipped up ahead of Crosby to the door. He caught up and knocked. The door flew open immediately, almost as if Jasmine had been waiting for them. By the look on her face, she probably had been.

"Mommy!" Jabbar squealed and hugged her tightly.

"Hey, little man," she replied, squatting down and hugging him back. Jabbar launched into recounting the highlights of the weekend, including taking a trip to FunLand with his cousins and catching a fish off the back of the boat. Jasmine nodded distractedly, her eyes occasionally stealing away to Crosby's direction. After a moment, she knelt down and encouraged Jabbar to go and play in his room.

"I guess that's it," Crosby said casually. "See you in…well, did you still need me to take him to that doctor's appointment? Or what was it?"

"We need to talk," she replied. Crosby sighed. He felt a lecture coming on.

"What is it this time, Jasmine?" he asked, already exasperated. "Does he smell like the wrong brand of soy milk?"

"Please explain to me why Jabbar has been going around saying 'Well, you can suck it you jerk'?"

Crosby snorted a laugh. "I've never heard him say that."

"That's because when I realized it was becoming a problem, I put him in time out and told him he couldn't have any cookies. Cured him right up."

"So you're the fun parent," Crosby said.

"Well, I'm not the corrupting parent," Jasmine countered.

"That sounds a lot like an accusation," he replied.

"He started it up as soon as you dropped him off last week. Crosby, he learned that from you."

"Your proof?" Crosby countered.

"My brother told me that that's a line out of Sunset Samurai," she said.

Crosby registered a look of recognition. "I knew I'd heard that before."

"Right, so you're teaching Jabbar lines out of Rated-R movies? Nice going."

"Whoa," Crosby protested. "I didn't teach him anything. I have no clue where he got that from."

"So you didn't teach it to him?

"No. I did not teach it to him."

"Then where did he get it from? When I dropped him off last week, I'd never heard him say anything even like that before, and now everybody in the world needs to suck it."

Crosby barely concealed a laugh.

"So that's funny to you?" Jasmine asked.

"I mean, c'mon; it is a little," Crosby said.

"That your son has a potty mouth?"

"That movie is hysterical," Crosby explained.

"Crosby!" Jasmine said accusingly.

"Look, Jasmine, I'm not going to lie to you, because I don't have to. I was watching the movie while Jabbar was in the other room. I had no idea he was even listening. He was, like asleep, or playing with Sidney or somebody."

"Or somebody?" The truth seemed to make Jasmine even angrier. "You keep Jabbar a day or two per week—tops—and you can't wait just a few hours until he leaves before you watch adult entertainment? It's like you don't even get what being a father is about."

"Hold on," Crosby said, suddenly sobered. "Don't get all ballistic on me. You're talking like I took Jabbar to a strip club."

"Don't make this about me, Crosby. This is about you."

"You think I want Jabbar telling people to go screw themselves?"

"Suck it," Jasmine corrected.

"I was a little boy...I picked up stuff. And instead of you coming to me like a sane person—"

"So I'm insane now?"

"And…and having conversation—"

"You know what, Crosby? I shouldn't even have to do this."

"Do what? Boss me around? Berate me as a parent?"

"No. I shouldn't have to coach you through Every. Little. Thing."

"You shouldn't even want to coach me on every little thing. I know you think I'm the worst father ever—"

"Crosby, I don't even hear you--"

"…and that I should be grateful that I can co-parent with someone as competent as you—"

"Yeah, ridicule me Crosby. That's mature."

"I'm not ridiculing you. I'm just saying there are things that you do that I don't love either, but I don't ride your ass about it."

Jasmine was visibly taken aback. "For example?"

But Crosby was already over it. "Just…nothing. I gotta go to work."

"Nine-thirty at night?"

"I work weird hours."

Jasmine crossed her arms. "I wanna hear what it is that you don't like. I'm a mature adult. I'm open to suggestions."

"Well, I don't think you should treat Jabbar like he's at a Weight Watchers weigh-in."

"What are you talking about?"

He imitated Jasmine's voice. "No cookies, no cake, no…Raisinettes."

"Raisinettes? He's lactose intolerant."

"Whatever. Why is food a punishment?"

"You have to take away something he likes, Crosby. What, should I take away his vegetables? Maybe that's a more suitable punishment."

"I mean, why can't you just talk to him?"

"You can't just talk to a five year old."

"Yes you can. I do."

"Yeah, and that's why he comes back to me telling people to suck it. Real effective parenting."

"See that's why I didn't tell you. You insult. You're an insulter."

Suddenly Jabbar appeared. He looked timid and worried.

"Come hug me good night," Crosby said cheerily. Jabbar walked over sheepishly, giving Crosby a hug; the two adults looked at each other.

"Go get your jammies. It's already passed your bedtime," Jasmine said. Jabbar jogged off. Meanwhile, Crosby walked off.

"I'm not done with this Crosby," she whispered loudly. Crosby jumped in his car and drove off.