He didn’t want to say anything about it, and out of politeness no one was asking. There were some rumors flitting about, but there always had to be rumors about someone or other to keep the town going. Hopper knew not to look too far into such rumors- Joyce had gotten the brunt end of them many a time after her nasty divorce with Lonnie, so he’d learned to take things with a grain of salt. And besides. His own family was enough of a handful already.
To Hopper, the Wheeler family had always been the run-of-the-mill suburban model that was just nice enough to be ignored. They put up Christmas wreathes during the holidays, took new family pictures every year, and slowly passed their children up through school until they left town. That was the trope he let them fall into. Until 1983.
Mike had been somewhat inducted into the family since the guarantee of Eleven’s safety from Dr. Owens, and although Hopper had worried extensively over how the transition would go, it was smooth and all his nightmares of pesky neighbors swiveling their heads their direction or agents stalking behind the kid as he walked soon ceased. He finally got to know the kid as more than just a Wheeler counterpart, and after that it was hard to pin him to any of the rumors attached to his family. Hopper supposed that at some point he’d have to sit down with him and have a chat about whatever was going on between him and Eleven, but for now the three of them were in a peaceful balance of board games on Tuesdays, pizza on Thursdays, and plenty of beaming from El on any day Hopper caved and told Mike he could come. With all that, Hopper could easily ignore the blushing that ensued whenever they bumped hands reaching for pizza and the goodbye hugs that lasted just a second too long. Until Eleven could reenter the world under the alias of Jane, things were right where they were supposed to be.
Or at least they were with the Hopper family.