A novel by Karen Lockhart
Copyright© 2017 Karen Lockhart
The week flew by; on Saturday Ellen and I had our riding lessons in the morning at Cathy's. This time there were no grumbles from Wendy. She knew Kevin would be there, hopefully bringing his nephew.
Ah, young love! I wondered if Kevin realized Wendy was actually a boy. I know it wouldn't bother him, but what kind of reaction would Billy have? I was afraid for Wendy, mentally as well as physically. Maybe Ellen and I had let this go too far. Billy obviously was head over heels in love with Wendy, who reciprocated his feelings. I'd have to pull Ellen aside and see what we could come up with. I thought it was time Wendy saw a doctor who specially dealt with transgendered children.
I called Doctor Singh's office, and spoke with her nurse about an appointment for Wendy. She promised the doctor would call me back as soon as she was free. I thanked her and turned to Ellen saying, “I need to see her anyway; this will kill two birds with one stone.”
Ellen laughed, “So you want to be killed huh? No other old expression comes to mind?”
“No, can you think of any oh wise one?” I responded. “Doctor Singh is calling me back to make time to see Wendy and me. That's important, I think putting her on hormones now at age sixteen will really benefit her.”
Ellen agreed with me on this. “When you were transitioning, I read as much as I could on the use of hormones. If a hormone regimen is started early enough, her pelvis will even become more feminine. I also read of the suicide rate of young TGs; it's absolutely scary.”
My cell phone rang, interrupting Ellen. It was Doctor Singh. I filled her in on Wendy's history as best as I could. She was concerned about her being a runaway, this meant somewhere she had parents that might object to helping her be a girl. I assured her a search was made by the State Police looking for any reports of a missing child that resembled Wendy, and they got no hits on the records search.
This made her feel that I was her guardian, and could have her examined, with the plan of hormone treatment for transitioning. We had an appointment for Monday afternoon at 3pm! I couldn't wait to tell Wendy!
We were awake at 8am and I got a chance to try out my new mirror in the kitchen. It worked like a charm. I was able to brush my hair and put on the minimal amount of makeup for my lesson. I didn't think my horse would notice, but Kevin might. I'm starting to sound like Wendy, aren't I?
As we pulled into the farm, Jim Brady was leaving. This meant Chris would be riding with us. We hadn't seen her for the longest time.
Ellen and I were tacking up our horses when we heard Kevin's voice. Wendy ran out of my horse's stall into the main aisle, looking for Billy. I guess she found him, I could hear giggling, I knew that didn't come from Kevin!
Speaking of Kevin, he snuck into the stall and gave me a quick kiss on the cheek. I spun around and kissed him properly. He had to take a handkerchief from his back pocket to wipe the lipstick from his lips.
I looked at him and asked. “Are you becoming shy? Afraid Cathy will think we are involved?”
He looked over his shoulder before responding. “No, I just don't want to give Billy any ideas. You know, he was sitting in my truck before I even had my jacket on this morning. Before we went to bed last night, I made the mistake of saying Wendy might be here this morning,” he whispered.
I gave him a serious look and asked if his nephew knew Wendy was a girl like me and would he become violent when he found out? Kevin just shrugged, and stood back so my horse and I could leave the stall. He agreed we needed to talk about this later, but for now, as long as they behaved, things should be okay.
Tina showed up out of breath, saying she had car trouble causing her to be late. I said “I'll tell Cathy you're on your way.” Humph, trouble with her little Mercedes? I think that was a story. I wonder if she was in touch with her hit-and-run father again.
With four of us in the lesson, it was like old times. Cathy really put us through our paces. Every time I passed the viewing rooms window, I looked inside to check on Romeo and Juliet. The kids were sitting side by side and just talking.
After the lesson was over, I had Wendy ride my horse while I led them around the ring. She really had fun, I might have created a monster! Next she would want lessons and a horse of her own. Well me first, although I'm not sure I could afford the cost of one horse, let alone two.
Because of the two love birds, Ellen and I stayed for Kevin's driving lesson allowing Billy and Wendy more time together. It was a good thing Billy hadn't got his driver's license yet, or he'd be at our condo every day. No back seat wrestling either!
On the ride to Sears, I told Wendy about me making a doctor's appointment for her to discuss hormones. She almost bounced off the SUV's roof she was so excited! I also told her to go slow with Billy, making sure her secret wasn't found out.
I headed straight for the hardware department, not looking left or right until I got to the hand tool section. After I nosed around a little, a sales person asked if they could be of help. I explained what I was looking for, and in minutes I had a brand new tool kit, even including a hacksaw! I rounded up Wendy, who was playing with the lawn tractors.
“Aunt Ginny, we need one of these!” Wendy said, “I could cut our grass in ten minutes”.
I ignored her which worked better than arguing, and hopped into the car. It was only a ten minute ride to the Outback restaurant. Ellen warned us we were going out for supper too, so eat light. Wendy and I had burgers, Ellen had a shrimp cocktail and a salad with blue cheese dressing.
When we got home, I told Wendy to stay in the car with me while Ellen went inside.
“Aunt Ginny, where are we going?” Wendy asked.
“I saw an empty parking lot just up the street, feel like driving a little?” I asked.
Again she almost hit the roof she was so excited. When we pulled into the medical building's parking lot, I parked in the back and turned off the ignition. After opening the door I told Wendy to slide over.
Sitting in the passenger seat, I pointed out the different switches and gauges on the dashboard, telling Wendy she needed to check these every time she got ready to drive. I had her start the car and showed her the readings on the gauges, especially the fuel gauge and the temperature gauge. I then had her shift the lever into 'D' and slowly press the gas pedal. She was driving! We went around the parking lot slowly, copying the pattern Cathy had us ride in our lesson.
Wendy got more comfortable, so I had her speed up. After thirty minutes of this, I told her to park between two painted parking slots. It only took her two tries, so I had her shift into reverse and drive around backwards.
“Okay, park the car again, then shift into 'P' that's for parking, and turn the key towards you to shut the motor down.”
She did just what I told her perfectly. We swapped places and I complemented her on how good she did. I wondered to myself if I should rent a car with a standard shift to see how well she handled a clutch. Thoughts of double clutching a ten-wheeler niggled at my mind, causing me to laugh.
“Aunt Ginny, what's so funny, is it something I did?” Wendy asked. She really was concerned.
“I was just thinking about when I first learned to drive. What do you say? Do you want to go to a driving school so you can get a learner's permit?”
Off the roof she bounced again, squealing with joy. “When?” she asked, “Can I sign up today?”
“Hold your horses, kiddo; I made a doctor's appointment for us on Monday. Why don't we wait until next week? Another week will give us another chance to practice in a parking lot.
When we got home, Wendy flew inside, telling Ellen she had driven, and now wanted to get a car. This got Ellen and I laughing.
“Wendy, two hours ago you wanted a horse, if you go for a boat ride, will you want a boat too?” Ellen asked.
“Sure, why not?” Wendy answered. Don't you just love teenagers?
“How about going to Spuds in Saugus for supper, we haven't been there for ages,” Ellen asked.
“Giving the cook the evening off? I love the idea. Don't they have lobster rolls on Saturday? Wendy did you ever taste lobster? I think you might like it.”
Ellen smiled, “Okay, it's a girl's night out, except one of us can't drink and be the designated driver.”
“I'll drive,” squealed Wendy. “Aunt Ginny showed me how to this afternoon.”
Ellen looked at me and said we needed to sign her up for driving lessons, and it was too bad she wasn't in high school. The school had a student driving program in Swampscott.
I answered the telephone that startled us; we were not used to the home phone ringing. It was the Lynn Police detective asking if he could drop by to show us some sketches. He said he was at the local police department, just five minutes away, so I gave him the okay.
Sure enough, in five minutes our doorbell rang. Ellen opened the door letting the detective inside. I sent Wendy into the kitchen to make a pot of coffee.
The cop had a manila envelope under his arm that he opened spreading out six different artist's sketches of the hit and run driver. Ellen and I picked out the same sketch! When Wendy came back, she pointed to the sketch saying, “That's him, the guy that hit that poor woman.”
We made small talk over coffee, before the cop thanked us and said he was heading back to see his lieutenant to send the picture to surrounding PD's.
“I wonder where that guy is hiding?” Wendy asked. “I hope he's not around here.”
Ellen and I just exchanged a look.
To be continued
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