In the middle of the night, five-year-old Isaac or ‘Zak’ Milton Richfield, left the bedroom he shared with his four-year-old brother, Jacob Bentley Richfield, to wander the mansion he lived with in Paradise, California.
In his pajamas, Zak looked down the scary hallway and tiptoed to his dads’ bedroom door. He reached for the knob and the door wasn’t shut all the way, opening when he touched it. He peeked into the huge, dark room and looked at the bed.
One of his fathers, the Nation’s Top Male Model, Mark Antonious Richfield, was lying on the bed, but didn’t have his eyes closed.
Zak entered the room and looked around the big space, continuing to tiptoe towards his dad.
When he was standing alongside him, Zak whispered, “Daddy?”
Mark startled and turned to look at him, a smile slowly making its way to his lips. “Well. Hullo. What are you doing up so late?”
Zak reached for him and Mark helped him onto the high bed, then sat up against the headboard.
“Where’s Daddy Stan?” Isaac asked, “You said he was making a movie? He came home and then why did he go away again?”
Mark caressed Isaac’s long hair lovingly. “He took your sister, Lily, to New York to spend time with Grandma Mike and Grandma Ali.”
“Why?” Zak snuggled under the blanket with his daddy.
Mark held his young son close to him in the dim bedroom. As he thought about yesterday and his husband, Stan, returning from a movie production in Denmark after being away from home for nearly five weeks, Mark had no idea to explain why he had left again, to his children.
The reason? Daddy Stan and Mark’s eldest son, Alexander, Zak’s thirty-five-year-old half-brother, had an affair.
How do you explain that to a five-year-old?
How do you tell him that his father and half-brother had sex?
“Don’t worry, love.” Mark kissed Isaac’s hair and tried to settle him down so he would sleep. “Everything will be okay.”
Isaac yawned and appeared tired.
Mark tucked his son into the soft blankets beside him and tried to help him go back to sleep. As Isaac’s breathing softened to slumber, Mark stared into the dark room, not sure about his own words. About things being okay. Not sure at all.