The door of Molly’s room slamming was the first clue they had that something was wrong. Glancing at each other, Mehadi and Madeleine moved almost in unison, dropping what they were doing and moving immediately to the other side of that door. Matt tried the handle, but it was locked from the inside.
“Molly? Come on, honey, don’t lock us out.”
“Go away!” the little girl’s angry voice came through the door only slightly muffled.
They looked at each other again, and then Mehadi tried next. “What’s wrong, sweetheart? Maybe we can help.”
There was silence for a long moment on the other side of the door, then the sound of the key in the lock made them both let out a silent breath of relief. When the door opened, however, it was only long enough for a furious-faced Molly to spit out. “How can you? What would either of *you* know about boys?”
She started to slam the door again, but Matt’s cop reflexes got her hand in the opening before she could. “Molly…”
Molly flounced away from them and threw herself onto her bed with all the vigor of puppy love frustrated. “Go away,” she repeated in a small voice.
They did no such thing. Instead, Mehadi seated herself on one side of the bed while Matt took the other. “It might surprise you what we know about boys. I don’t know about Madeleine, but it took me the better part of my life to realize I preferred women.”
“Still not the same,” Molly muttered into her pillow.
The two women looked at each other helplessly. “Well, if you won’t talk to us,” Matt suggested. “What about Micah? He’s a boy.”
“Moms!” The horrified look on Molly’s face when she raised it from the pillow was more than enough to answer that question, although Matt’s next words just confirmed it:
“Oh, I see. So it’s Micah that’s the problem.”
Molly turned bright red and buried her face in the pillow again.
Mehadi ran a hand over the little girl’s hair. “Molly, talk to us. Even if you’d rather not take our advice on the subject, we can at least listen.”
“And we can still beat him up if he did anything to hurt you,” Matt added in her own inimitable way.
Molly just lay there for another long moment before finally rolling over. When she did, there was a hint of a smile shining through the tears. “No you can’t. ‘Cause then Niki would just beat *you* up and then where would I be?”
“Hey, that’s a risk I’m willing to take.”
“Well, I’m not,” Mehadi and Molly chimed in simultaneously, then looked at each other in surprise.
The world held its breath for a moment until Molly broke down into giggles and the other two followed. Reaching for her two adopted mothers, Molly allowed them to pull her into their arms and the three of them just held on to each other. She still didn’t say anything about what typical-pre-teen-boy behavior had put Micah in her doghouse, but at least for the moment, it had ceased to matter.