A/N: This is probably the most positive portrayal of Suzanne and Rick that I'm ever going to write. I don't think this is my definitive headcanon of them, but it was an interesting exercise. Title from the Indigo Girls song "Get Out the Map."

One: April 2013

"Our son's going to be a Yankee," Suzanne says when Rick picks up the phone.

"It's going well, then?" Rick asks.

"I don't think I've seen Dicky this happy since he was figure skating. Maybe not even then," Suzanne says. "He spent 20 minutes just staring at the announcement board outside the dining hall with all the flyers for student organizations and activities, and that was before we toured the rink. Rick, I've never seen an arena this nice, and you know how many we've visited over the years, between the figure skating and the hockey. The facilities are amazing, which I suppose is what you expect from a D1 school, but it's not just that; it's the way the light streams in through the big windows in the arena, too. Everything is just . . . picturesque."

"Don't tell me you're thinking of moving up there, too."

"Oh Lord, no. You know I love Georgia, and I'm never moving away from all our family if I can help it. But I think Dicky might be a different story."

"Well, it wouldn't be the first time Dicky's done something the rest of us never dreamed of," Rick says.

Suzanne laughs. "True."

"Is it cold up there?"

"It feels about like Georgia feels in February. Not too bad, all things considered. Lord knows it'll be colder in the winter, but I think Dicky will be willing to deal with that in exchange for getting out of the South and getting to play hockey here."

"You think he hates it here that much?" Rick asks.

"Yeah. I hate to say it, but yes, I do."

"Well, then I hope Samwell is everything he thinks it is right now."

Two: August 2013

"Did it go okay?" Rick asks when he picks up Suzanne's call. "No trouble lifting all those boxes?"

"Rick, Dicky's stronger than you seem to think. He's going to be playing D1 hockey starting in a couple days, after all."

"I know, I know," Rick sighs. "But he'll always be a kid to me, you know? I still remember when he was a baby. Lord, I still remember when you were pregnant with him. It's so weird that he's an adult now."

"It is," Suzanne allows. "But he is an adult, and you need to treat him like one."

"All right, all right. I'll work on that. But you got him moved in okay?"

"Yeah. We found the student kitchens, too, and I took him to the grocery store before I left. I have a feeling he'll be bringing his boys pie tomorrow at practice."

"Y'all and your baking," Rick says fondly. "Did you meet his roommate? Does he have more than one?"

"He's in a quad, so there'll be four of them when school starts, but that's not for a couple more weeks yet; it's still preseason. I think Dicky's the only athlete of the bunch. That might be good; maybe his roommates will encourage him to actually study for once. In any case, Dicky's the only one here right now."

"I hope he makes friends," Rick says. "I know he has trouble with other boys sometimes."

"He did okay with fellow skaters, for the most part," Suzanne points out. "Both figure skating and hockey. If that continues, he should be just fine."

"That's true," says Rick. "How about you? How did it feel dropping our only child off at college?"

"It was . . . hard, honestly. I'll keep our Pinterest updated for him. That should help. But I'm going to miss him a lot. In the kitchen, especially, but also just in general."

"It'll be quieter around here for sure," Rick agrees. "But you're okay?"

"I'm okay," Suzanne confirms. "I'll be glad to see you when I land tomorrow."

Three: October 2013

"Suze! It's pretty late. I'd started to think you weren't going to call. Weren't we going to talk before the game?" Rick says when Suzanne calls.

"Oh, right, we were," says Suzanne. "Lord, I'm sorry about that. You really can call me, if I forget to call you. I was baking with Dicky in that frat house the team has."

"It's fine. There were games to watch," Rick says. "But how was it?"

"Great! Dicky really does seem so happy here. I mean, he's mouthing off a bit more, but I think that means he's comfortable. I got pictures of him before the game, and then afterward I met the Zimmermanns. You know, Dicky's teammate Jack and his father?"

"Yes, I know who Bad Bob Zimmermann is," Rick replies dryly. "I remember the posters up in your college dorm room back in the day. I guess you didn't get over that celebrity crush, huh?"

"Oh, you hush."

"I'm just teasing you. How did it go, meeting the Zimmermanns?"

"Jack seemed a bit grumpy," Suzanne admits. "I think he's upset that Dicky got the game-winner, instead of him. Bob was very pleasant, though."

"Dicky got the game-winner?" Rick repeats. "Suze, you've got to lead with this kind of important information!"

"Right, y'all and your sports. Yes, Dicky got the game-winner, and he didn't faint even once. I'm very proud of him."

"So am I. Wow," Rick says. "He's come a long way since collapsing at peewee practice, hasn't he?"

"Rick, you know that was at least halfway your fault," Suzanne chides. "You were treating those kids like your high schoolers, which they most definitely were not."

"Most of them were fine!" Rick insists. "And I wanted to toughen Dicky up."

"That's not how that works," Suzanne argues.

Rick sighs. "And clearly you were right, because now he's holding his own on a D1 hockey team. I give up, okay? You win."

"I wish you'd tell him that," says Suzanne. "Can you at least text him and tell him you're proud of him for getting the game-winning goal? Y'all have sports in common, if nothing else."

"All right, all right. I'll text him," Rick agrees.

Four: October 2014

"Suze! How's it going?" Rick asks as soon as he picks up Suzanne's call.

"Really great, Rick," Suzanne replies. "Dicky had a great game. I knew he got moved up to first line with Jack Zimmermann last season, but that was after family weekend, so I hadn't gotten to see the two of them playing together in person before. Dicky got more ice time than last year, too. He didn't score this time, but he got an assist on one of Jack's goals."

"That's awesome," Rick says. "I'm glad he's doing so well. I'm sorry I couldn't get the time off to come with you, but I'm glad you're there and that he's playing well. How is he otherwise?"

"Things seem to be going really well for him. I got to see his room at the frat house, and we baked together in the kitchen again, and you can tell he lives there now, you know? Last year it felt like we were borrowing someone else's kitchen, and it barely even had the bare essentials, but now so much of his baking stuff is here and it's so homey, even if half the fridge is full of beer. The couch in the living room is disgusting, but Dicky put curtains on the windows—our old set, remember, from before we redid the kitchen—so those look nice."

"That's great," says Rick. "The boys down here pulled it out, too. Close game, but we got 'em in the end."

"That's good to hear. They've been working real hard this year."

"They sure have. How's that hotel treating you?"

"Well, Lord knows I'd rather be waking up next to you, but the bed is comfortable, so that's something."

"Maybe when we retire we could do some traveling," Rick suggests.

"That could be nice," Suzanne agrees. "I think for now I should get to bed so I'm able to wake up for my flight tomorrow."

"You do that," Rick says. "Good night, Suze."

"Good night, Rick."

Five: May 2017

"Suzanne! I wasn't expecting a call from you tonight. Didn't Dicky graduate today?" Connie says when she picks up the phone.

"He sure did. He also got engaged," Suzanne replies.

"No way! Are you joking?"

"Constance Elizabeth, you know I wouldn't joke about a thing like that."

Connie sighs. "No, I know, I know. I just. Wow! Our little Dicky is really locking down Jack Zimmermann?"

Suzanne laughs. "I mean, when you put it like that . . . but yes, he really is."

"Who would've thought, huh?"

"Certainly not me," Suzanne admits. "It's only a year ago I found out that he wasn't just waiting until he met the right girl. And now he's engaged to a man. I know it's not as fast as it feels and they've been together longer than I've known, but it feels like it's been a whirlwind of a year."

"Of course it does," Connie says lightly. "Goodness knows they all grow up so fast. I still can't believe I have a grandbaby, and Liza is already almost a year old!"

"I wish he'd felt like he could've told me sooner, you know?"

"Oh," says Connie, and now there's something much heavier in her voice. "Do you think you should have done something differently?"

"Probably," says Suzanne. "I mean, I must have done something wrong. He used to say I was his best friend, but he kept his relationship secret from me for a year! I guess . . . maybe when we moved, I should have said something. I don't know that I ever really explained that to you, but we didn't just move because Rick got a new job. We moved because some boys locked Dicky in a closet overnight. He never told us why, but I think, looking back, it was probably because they guessed he was gay."

"That's awful!" Connie says. "That they would do that, I mean."

"I know," Suzanne agrees. "And I think maybe Dicky thought we never talked about it because we didn't want it to be true—because we didn't want him to be gay. And I don't know how to make that right."

"Me neither."

"No, this isn't yours to fix. Sorry," Suzanne says. "I should let Judy and Mom know about Dicky's engagement. Thanks for talking."

"Of course," says Connie. "I'll text Dicky congratulations."

"Thanks. See you in a few days."

Plus One: June 2027

"Mama," Dicky says urgently when Suzanne picks up. "Caroline has a fever and she won't stop coughing and I don't know what to do."

"I'm betting a deep breath would be a good first step," Suzanne says. "Even if it's serious, you can afford to take a second to breathe. In fact, that'll help you handle it better. Are you breathing?"

"Yes, Mama."

"Good. Now. When did this start?" Suzanne asks.

"Last night it seemed like she might have a bit of a cold, but I didn't think it was anything serious and I really wanted to come to alumni weekend, since it's my ten-year anniversary, and of course Jack's in Montreal helping Bob with his broken hip, so I packed Caroline up and drove to Samwell, and then this morning . . . Lord, she's been coughing so hard since about four a.m., and I've just been waiting for a decent hour to call you. I feel sorry for whoever has to clean this hotel room."

"You're in Boston?"

"Yep, and Jack's in Canada," Dicky replies.

"How high is Caroline's fever?"

"Only 101, and I know they get a lot higher than that sometimes, but this hasn't happened before and I'm scared."

"When she's not coughing, does it seem like she can breathe?" Suzanne asks.

"What do you mean?"

"Is she wheezing or panting, anything like that?"

"No," says Dicky. "Oh, Lord, I hadn't even thought to worry about that."

"She'll be okay," Suzanne assures him. "Everyone gets sick at some point, and it's always scary the first time it happens to your kid, but it's going to be okay. Now, I think your best bet is to drive back to Providence and take her to her doctor there, just to be safe. She might have croup, but that usually clears up on its own, and it's viral, so there's not much you can do anyway. If this lasts more than a couple days, or if she seems to be having trouble breathing, she'll need to see a doctor right away, but for now you can definitely afford a 40-minute drive. I'm sorry you have to miss your alumni event, but obviously you shouldn't drag your sick daughter to a crowded party. And leave a note in the hospital room—and maybe at the front desk, too—warning them that Caroline was sick and the housekeeping staff should wear gloves and masks when they clean your room."

"Thanks, Mama," says Dicky. "I'll do all that. I think I should call the pediatrician now and make an appointment for later today. We can talk this weekend, right?"

"Right," Suzanne agrees. "You can call before then if you need to, though. I know it can be scary, being a parent."

"I know," says Dicky. "Thanks, really."

"You're welcome."