Charles saw his former mother-in-law, Mrs. Carter, near a dumpster and took her home. She told him the horrible story of how his ex-wife had kicked her out after doing something terrible, so Charles and his new wife decided to act.
"Mrs. Carter! What are you doing here?" Charles asked his ex-mother-in-law when he saw her sitting next to a dumpster right outside his workplace. He was the restaurant manager, and the old lady had been rummaging through the garbage to grab something to eat.
"Charles? Is that you? Oh, dear boy. I'm so embarrassed," the older woman said, touching her face with one hand as if to hide it. But Charles kneeled and looked directly at her.
The last time he saw her was the day of his divorce from Erica 15 years ago. He caught Erica cheating with several men during their marriage and was finally done forgiving her antics. Mrs. Carter was Erica's mother and was ashamed of her daughter's actions, but she was still her daughter.
Mrs. Carter was right next to the dumpster. | Source: Shutterstock
Charles was forced to pay alimony despite Erica's actions, and he had to start a brand new life because she also kept their old condo. But when they finalized the divorce, Mrs. Carter hugged him tightly, wished him luck, and told him he would find a wonderful girl soon enough.
The older woman wasn't rich, but she had a house and no reason to sit and rummage through a dumpster. "Please, Mrs. Carter. Tell me what happened to you," he almost begged her.
"They won't get away with this, Mrs. Carter."
"Oh, no dear. It's such a painful story. Do you work here? I'll go away," the older woman responded and stood up to leave.
"Where will you go?"
"Nowhere…. Anywhere. I don't know."
"What about your house?"
Mrs. Carter looked at him directly and smiled a sad grin, starting to walk away. However, Charles stopped her. He couldn't just let her go.
He served her a plate of food. | Source: Pexels
"Please, come with me," Charles urged, grabbing the old woman's arm and guiding her toward the restaurant. He sat her down in the kitchen and offered her a plate of food. "Eat everything. That's an order."
The woman smiled genuinely this time and started eating. When she finished, she stood up and wanted to leave again. But Charles wasn't going to allow that either.
"No, Mrs. Carter. You're coming home with me. I have someone I want you to meet," he revealed, guiding the woman toward his car.
"Honey, this is Mrs. Carter. She is Erica's mother," Charles introduced the older woman to his new wife, Martha, the light of his life.
"Oh! Mrs. Carter! It's so nice to meet you. Charles has told me so much about you. You were the one good memory he has of his past, and I'm grateful for that," Martha greeted with the biggest grin in the world, hugging the old lady. The woman was stiff for one second but thawed immediately, receiving that hug as if she was starved for closeness.
"Let's sit down and have some tea. How does that sound?" Charles stated, leading both women to the kitchen table, and getting everything prepared. Martha first made polite chit-chat with the older woman, then she finally cut to the chase.
Charles looked at Mrs. Carter, urging her for the truth. | Source: Pexels
"So what happened? Where did you meet again?" his wife asked curiously.
Charles took a deep breath and looked at Mrs. Carter with a severe expression. "That's actually something that Mrs. Carter has yet to tell me," he began, explaining to Martha where he found the woman. Then he looked at his former mother-in-law and said, "Please, can you tell me the truth now?"
Mrs. Carter paused for a second as if gathering her strength. "Things took a dark turn when you finally divorced Erica. She started dating men left and right, but she picked the most horrible man to marry. When they finalized things, she and her husband convinced me to sign over my house to their name."
"Why would you do that?"
Mrs. Carter told them what Erica had done. | Source: Pexels
"Well, I went through a bad time health-wise, and they convinced me it was the right thing to do. That way, they wouldn't have to pay a lot in inheritance tax. I thought it was a good idea because Erica would be getting the house anyway if I died. But I got better," Mrs. Carter continued, and Charles started to imagine what happened next.
"Go on," Martha encouraged gently.
"One day, they came to the house, telling me to leave because they had sold it. I asked them if I would live with them, but they laughed in my face! They laughed," Mrs. Carter scoffed and laughed sarcastically. "I couldn't believe it."
"That's horrible," Charles breathed. "I know that Erica was horrible to me, but I never imagined she would do something like that to you. But what about money? Your pension?"
"They took that too. I fell for that argument. I've been on the streets for several years and collected some social security every month, but it's not enough. After working my entire life, raising my daughter, and everything, I'm now left with nothing," Mrs. Carter finished as tears started running down her face.
Martha promised to do something about Mrs. Carter's situation. | Source: Pexels
"Oh no, ma'am. You are not alone anymore. You're staying here with us," Martha chimed in. "If that's okay with you, honey?"
"Of course, it is! We're not going to abandon you," Charles responded, but Martha was not done.
"They won't get away with this, Mrs. Carter. They basically scammed you out of your possessions and money. I'm a lawyer. I'm getting my team on this. This is elder abuse, and I'm going to set the law on them for it," Martha revealed, and Mrs. Carter smiled tearily at the woman.
"Thank you. Thank you so much. I can't believe strangers would be kinder to me than my own daughter," she voiced.
"We're not strangers, Mrs. Carter. I thought of you as a great mother-in-law at some point, and even if I got divorced, my affection and respect for you never stopped. Martha is one of the best lawyers in Maryland. She'll do something," Charles assured her.
Erica and her husband had to pay for their crime. | Source: Pexels
Martha managed to sue Erica and her new husband for what they did to Mrs. Carter, and they had to sell their own house plus pay a considerable amount of money as restitution. Martha didn't pursue any charges because the older woman didn't want them in jail. She was just too good.
In the end, the older woman rented an apartment near Charles and Martha and saw how they started their own family. Of course, she was part of it too.
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