Grin And Bear It
(Little Ezra)

by Tyger

Disclaimer: Are these even necessary any more? Do you see me claiming it as my own? Or making money? I thought not... I don't even own the dvds, though I do own a "Losing Grip" cd.
Author's Note: This story was inspired by Avril Lavigne's "Losing Grip" believe it or not. Lyrics are posted at the end of the story.
Characters: Ezra, Maude
Rating: G - My only warning is that it's unbeated.
Archive: This is also archived over at

A stately old house was the only witness to the embittering event unfolding on its verandah. Its occupants were at Church, and the neighboring houses were a discreet distance away. A fully fenced yard provided security and privacy in equal measures.

A striking young woman attired in last season's high fashion stood gracefully. Her face was blank, but her eyes had a far away expression to them. On the bench sat a young, elegantly dressed boy. Both looked as if they should be attending a Church service, not arguing on an empty porch. If arguing was the appropriate term. Neither woman nor child had once raised their voices. They discussed matters as if they were remarking on the weather, or how pretty the Rhododendrons were.

As the time for Church came to an end the boy felt a chill race down his spine.

"Mothah, you promised you would take me this time." He spoke with an obvious Southern drawl.

The woman, his mother, brushed her son's plea away with a careless gesture and returned to watching the empty street. It was an especially quiet Sunday.

As if aware of how needy his previous statement had sounded, he took a deep breath and ordered his thoughts the way she had taught him. "I performed very admirably in regards to being the perfect son-to-be for Mr. Ellison. You stated that yourself. If you'd care to recall, at the beginning of this endeavour you agreed to let me accompany you for the next month. At least!"

She continued to act as if he was invisible to her. In fact, the only time he was 'visible' to her was when he helped her with a con, or to ensnare a rich husband. To her 'visible' equated with useful. As long as he was useful he was the apple of her eye.

He often wondered if this was the way his father had treated him when he was still around. Had he ignored him as if he was merely a useful piece of luggage, easily shipped off when it wouldn't suit? The blonde woman had made no bones of the fact that her husband had been very useful to her. He had a picture of his father. There was no denying the resemblance between the two of them. He wondered how often his mother saw not her son but her husband.

Down the street the Church's doors opened and the congregation spilled onto the green grass out front, gaily chatting away. The woman straightened almost imperceptibly, spotting her quarry. The boy's thoughts raced. He knew he didn't have long to convince her to take him with her to New York City. Unfortunately, once her mind was made up, nothing short of a miracle could induce her to change it.

He had already tried pleading and reasoning. Words had failed. Instead he tried guilt. He threw his small arms about her waist and held her with all the strength he could muster.

Finally she spoke.

"Ezra P. Standish, you are making a scene. You know how much Ah detest scenes." Unless, of course, there was money involved. He quickly erased the thought, afraid it would somehow show past his imperfect poker face.

Tears came unbidden. More followed when he saw her disgusted look. She plucked a delicately embroidered kerchief out of her handbag. Gently she wiped away his tears, more for her newly arrived audience's benefit than his.

Coming up the walkway was a thin, older man, and his frail looking wife. Both were turned out in their Sunday best, with a manservant trailing along behind.

"Cousin Maude! I thought you were coming next Saturday?" he called out, a touch sourly.

Maude thrust the handkerchief into Ezra's hand, fully expecting him to finish making himself presentable. Then she turned to her second cousin Alfred.

"Why! I do declare I thought I wrote to tell you that Mah plans changed! You must not have received my letter. You should really look into your postal service. You wouldn't want to be missing any other important missives." She turned suddenly sad eyes on her cousins. "I terribly hope that this won't be an imposition. With Mr. Ellison not returning my letters and this new business venture, I have no one I'd rather trust more to watch over my darlin' boy. This business venture is the chance of a lifetime!"

When Ezra was five he had asked his mother what the word 'bitter' meant. She had given him a dictionary. Now he recalled, of all the different definitions there were, that bitter could mean resentment, grief, disappointment or cynicism. Before now it had just been a fancy word in his novels. Now it was a clearly delineated emotion.

Dimly in the background he heard the adults discussing his placement here, as the manservant brought out lemonade. Her words rang falsely in his ears, speaking of security, love, and doting motherhood. Elderly Mr. And Mrs. Fitzpatrick were eating it up. Ezra manfully resisted the urge to snort. Gentlemen did not snort.

Face placid, his thoughts whirled around his head like a tornado. 'Don'tleaveme. Youpromisedicouldcome. Youtoldmeiwasagoodboy. Don'tleaveme. I'mtiredofbeingalone!'

Maude had once told him to always smile, even though he may hate the situation. As long as he was smiling then no one would know how hurt he was, and no one could take advantage of him. So he smiled as she was handed into her buggy by Mr. Fitzpatrick. He smiled and waved, though on the inside his tears were freezing to his cheeks. The sensation of being lost and adrift an old companion come to call. He tamped down the hurt as he'd been taught. If Maude didn't care about him, then he resolved not to care about her.

Mr. Fitzpatrick picked up his small carpetbag and his wife placed a hand on his shoulder. He looked up at her and smiled, handing her the handkerchief.

"Here Mrs. Fitzpatrick," he said, charming her with a smile. "A beautiful lady should have a beautiful handkerchief."

"But, child, it's your mother's."

"She has others, she doesn't need this one. And I don't need it now, either."


If you enjoyed this story, we're sure that Tyger would love to hear from you.

~Losing Grip~

Are you aware of what you make me feel, baby?
Right now I feel invisible to you, like I'm not real
Didn't you feel me lock my arms around you?
Why'd you turn away?
Here's what I have to say...

I was left to cry there, waiting outside there
Grinnin' with a lost stare,
That's when I decided...

Why should I care?
'Cause you weren't there when I was scared
I was so alone...
You, you need to listen!
I'm startin' to trip, I'm losin' my grip
And I'm in this thing alone...

Am I just some chick you placed beside you,
To take somebody's place?
When you turn around can you recognize my face?
You used to love me, you used to hug me
But that wasn't the case,
Everything wasn't okay

Cryin' out loud
I'm cryin' out loud
Cryin' out loud
I'm cryin' out loud!
Open your eyes
open up wide

Why should I care?
'Cause you weren't there when I was scared,
I was so alone...

Why should I care?
'Cuz you weren't there when I was scared,
I was so alone...

Why should I care?
If you don't care, then I don't care,
We're not goin' anywhere!

Why should I care?
'Cuz you weren't there when I was scared,
I was so alone...

Why should I care?
If you don't care, then I don't care,
We're not goin' anywhere!

Thank you for reading!

If you enjoyed this story please feel free to review, it only takes moments and it makes my life a little brighter.

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