She tilts her head to the side after taking a sip of her tea, studying us. “You know, I can’t get over how beautiful you two are together. One of those couples you love to follow on Instagram, you know, the really cute ones that are so sickening in love that you can’t get enough of them.”
Way to drop the love bomb, Mom.
Thankfully Emory doesn’t show any kind of hatred for the term but instead says, “Like Jennifer Lopez and A-Rod?”
“Yes,” my mom answers with excitement. “Oh my gosh, I’m obsessed with watching their stories. The little videos they do together, I just can’t get enough of them. J-Rod,” my mom says dreamily. “Oh gosh, what would your couple name be?” She thinks about it for a second. “Emox . . . or Knemory. Oh I love Knemory. Sounds so poetic.”
“Knemory does have a nice ring to it,” I add.
“I don’t know, what about Emorox?”
“Ohhh, that sounds like a name that belongs in The Game of Thrones.” Taking on a more masculine voice, my mom says, “Look out, Jon, Emorox is coming over the hill, with her fire-spitting dragons, Knemory and George.”
“George?” Emory laughs out loud, covering her mouth. “Why George?”
“Well, look at the names they have in that show? They’re all exotic names you’ve never heard before—Cersei, Gregor, Arya—and then in waltzes good old Jon Snow. It’s only fair that the dragons have a lemon in the bunch as well.”
“Uh, Jon is anything but a lemon, Mom,” I defend. “He was raised from the dead.”
My mom’s mouth drops, pure and utter shock in her face. “Jon Snow dies?”
Emory elbows my stomach. “Where the hell is your GOT etiquette? You never talk about the facts of the show until the air is cleared about how far someone is in watching. You are one of those people who spoils everything for someone just catching up to the trend.”
“I mean . . . uh . . . he doesn’t die.”
“You just said he is raised from the dead,” my mom says.
Feeling guilty, I reply, “Well, at least he’s still alive, right?”
She slumps against the cushion of the couch and mutters, “Unbelievable.”
“I’m sorry, Mrs. Gentry, that your son is a barbarian and broke your GOT trust.”
Pressing her hand against her forehead, my mom says, “You know, I blame myself. I thought I taught him a shred of decorum, I guess not.”
“Don’t blame yourself,” Emory coos. “You did everything right. It comes down to the hooligans he hangs out with. There’s only so much you can control after they leave the nest.”
“You’re absolutely right,” my mom agrees and leans across the couch to smack me in the back of the head.
“Hey,” I complain while rubbing the sore spot. I look between the two women in my life and I say, “I don’t like this ganging up on me shit.”
“You wanted us to get along, right?” Emory asks. “Well, I happen to like your mom, especially since she complimented my bosom.”
“Ah, I see.” I continue to look between the two of them. “You’re okay with my mom catching you with your shirt off now, moved past the embarrassment?”
Emory’s eyes narrow. “With that kind of attitude, it might be the very last time you see me topless.”
My mom raises her fist to the air, as if to say, “Girl Power.” And then she says, “You tell him, Emory. Don’t let him push you around.”
“I wasn’t pushing her around—”
“You keep that beautiful bosom under lock and key, and if you have a temptation to show anyone, just flash me.”
“Mom, do you realize how wrong that is?”
“Want to go to the bathroom right now, Mrs. Gentry?”
“I would be delighted to.”
They both stand but before they can make a move, I pull on Emory’s hand, bringing her back down to my lap. “No way in hell is that happening. Jesus, what is wrong with you?