It’s nearly dark by the time they reach her father’s cabin. Kate had very definitely meant to leave earlier, but all her good intentions were for naught, the final pieces of evidence refusing to fit together with the puzzle that was the witness’ testimony. Eventually, one re-interview later they had a collar, and that was worth it, even if it meant dragging on past her self imposed curfew.
She could have pulled rank and left it to the guys, but they all had families and plans for the weekend.
Rick had been a trooper, keeping the kids – and half the precinct – entertained in the break room with not-quite-so-out-there-but-highly-edited stories of Ninjas running amok in New York while she’d gotten everything wrapped up.
The familiar sounds of nature surround her as she steps out of the car, shepherding her kids out of the backseat and towards the porch.
The door opens, light spilling out into the twilight, and then Jim is smiling at them warmly, bending to lift six year old Sarah into his arms and ruffle eight year old Sam’s hair as he wanders past, nose glued to the screen of his latest video game.
“Sam!” Rick admonishes, and her son looks up guiltily, turning to give his grandfather a quick hug around the waist.
“Sorry, Grandpa,” Sam says, “the planet is under attack!”
“It’s alright, kid,” Jim responds. “You go on and save the world.”
Sam nods sagely before he ducks around his grandfather and slips inside.
“I’m glad you guys could make it,” Jim says, turning to them. There’s a nervous lilt to his voice. “There’s – uh, there’s someone I’d like you to meet.”
Sam, at least, is a little bit sceptical, but the kids, of course, take it much better than she does.
And why shouldn’t they? Grandpa Jim’s special friend Marlene makes just as much sense to them as all of Grandma Martha’s. They’ve always known Alexis has a different mommy and that, sometimes, people can fall in love more than once. It’s the only way they know. They’re very much a part of a blended family and so is she, of course. It’s just, well, she’d put hers together herself.
“Nice to meet you.” Rick, the traitor, offers a warm smile and kisses Marlene on the cheek in greeting before he retreats to fetch their bags, leaving her alone with her father and his… his… special friend.
Kate pastes on a smile and shakes Marlene’s hand as warmly as she can. It’s an effort not to show the surprise on her face but, honestly, she didn’t even know her father was seeing someone, let alone seeing someone seriously enough to bring her up to meet them.
“How did you two meet?” Kate asks, smiling so wide her face is starting to hurt as she tries not to slip into her interrogation voice.
“It’s a bit of a long story,” Jim admits, one hand coming to rest on Marlene’s shoulder as he steps closer to the woman.
“We could tell you about it over dinner,” Marlene suggests.
“Marlene cooked,” Jim adds, smiling an eye-twinkling-genuine smile that Kate hasn’t seen on his face in many a year.
“We ate on the way up,” Sarah says, already pulling her crayons from her book bag. “Mommy was busy saving the city from bad guys and it taked too long.”
“Took,” Kate corrects automatically.
“Sorry,” she adds, turning to her father and Marlene. “The kids were hungry.”
“It’s okay,” Marlene says with a smile. She turns to Kate’s children. “Well then, how about desert?”
And just like that, they’re won over.
Kate does the only thing left for her to do. She excuses herself to ‘help her husband’, sneaks away and rings the only person she knows that can help in this situation – Alexis.
Me either. I’m chalking it up to people who don’t have a very good relationship with their parents or, possibly, are made uncomfortable by families being close and sharing hugs/food/emotional moments etc.
Or maybe they just want to make mountains out of molehills.
So as I told you last year ( I am sure you won’t remember though), that I don’t have my birthday listed in social networks any more. So that means not that many birthday wishes. I guess I am not that important any more.
Here is the list of people who remembered:
I was more disappointed on my Uncle the one I look up to very much but apparently, he won’t be my role model that much.
Oh and there is so many people I always remember their birthdays but nope not anything.
I just wish I cared less…
But all in all it wasn’t a bad day. I spent a great day with my mom :) I am so blessed to have her in my life.