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"Thank you," smiled Shirley, "I think he'd like that very much. Would you go with me to Mike and Sandra's house? I need to tell them, but I don't know how..." her voice trailed off.

Adam drove his sister to Mike's apartment, and Sandra showed them inside.

"Mike is at the store right now," she explained.

"Could you call him?" requested Adam. "It's very important."

The grave faces of her relations prompted Sandra to call Mike. Before long, he hurried to the apartment.

"What's wrong?" he asked.

"You'd better sit down," said Adam, as everyone took a seat in the small living room.

"It's about your father and I," began Shirley. "How do I tell you this?" she cried, burying her face in her hands.

"What's going on?" asked Mike, looking to his uncle for an explanation.

"Mike," explained Adam, straining to keep his composure, "your father has confessed to at least two extramarital affairs. Your mother suspects there are more, but he denies it."

Mike stared at him in stunned bewilderment.

"He's asked me to forgive him," said Shirley, "but it's insincere repentance at best. One moment he says he's sorry, and the next, he's practically defending his actions."

"Are you sure?" asked Mike, as Sandra took her husband's hand to show her support. "Are you absolutely sure, Mom?"

"He's admitted it to me with his own mouth," answered Shirley. "Your brother already knows. It turns out he's known for some time. After this talk, I'm going to go have the same discussion with Chad. There's one other thing," she said, her voice quivering with emotion. "I'm going to leave your father. I can't stay with him any longer. He's not right with God and he refuses to be honest with me, so I'm going to leave him. If this were only a matter of a difference in opinion, then I wouldn't go. But this is much more serious."

"Are you getting divorced?" asked Sandra.

"When I took my marriage vows before God," said Shirley, "I said 'till death do us part.' The Bible says, 'What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.' No, there won't be any divorce-- at least not on my part. I don't think Thomas will, either, but at this point, I can't speak for him."

Mike was pale and shaken. This had come as a complete surprise to him. His parents were actually separating.

"Pray for your father, Mike," said Shirley, patting his hand. "He needs all our prayers. And while you're before the Lord, make mention of me, as well."

When Shirley broke into tears, Mike put his arms around his mother.

"Mom," wept the young man, "don't cry!"

Adam got up and went to the bathroom to gather his strength. Chad was next, and then Shirley had to face Thomas.

As the two drove out to Villa Rosa, Shirley prayed for God's help. When the pickup truck pulled up, Thomas knew in an instant that something big was going on, and that he was probably the cause of it.

"What are you doing here?" he asked Shirley, as she climbed out of the vehicle.

"I came to talk to Chad," she replied.

"I think he's till inside," replied Thomas, stepping aside as Shirley went into the mobile home. He looked at Adam and saw by his face that he had been told. "I never wanted to hurt her," said Thomas. "You must believe that."

"I don't," replied Adam, "and neither do you."
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