Chapter 40: A Proposal and A Wedding:
"Good morning Master Sawyer." My dad looks up from his paper when Grey walks into the large dining room. The table will hold twenty people and no one is up yet but me and my dad. I am on one end reading a book on European Architectural History and drinking my coffee and my dad is on the other end.
We rented a large estate outside of Dublin for Reid's wedding. We are all staying here including the Sawyer's. My dad and I are the earliest risers and neither of us expected to see anyone up yet for another hour. But, here it is 5:45 am and little Grey Sawyer has graced us with his presence. He is even dressed. I'm impressed.
"Good Morning Gramps, Uncle Caleb." Grey pushes one of the large dining room chairs out and crawls into it. It is a large Jonathan Charles Tudor Oak chair which is very expensive and heavy. Grey grunts then he manages to get in the chair but can't push his way back to the table. These chairs clearly aren't intended for children or even small women. My dad gets up and pushes his chair in, getting Grey close to the table. "Gramps, I got up early this morning so we could talk privately about something." He looks over at me and I raise my eyebrow.
"Are you suggesting I leave squirt?"
"You can stay Uncle Cal if you promise not to interrupt." I laugh but then see he is serious. I wonder what is on his little ten-year-old mind.
"Well Grey, this sounds quite serious. You have my attention. Would you like some orange juice before you tell me what is on your mind?"
"Yes please, Gramps." My dad gets up reaches into the center of the table and pours the pitcher of orange juice at the same time a butler comes out and apologizes for not being present to wait on Grey but my dad waves him off.
"So, tell me what has you up so early just to talk to me?" My dad leans in, takes his glasses off, and turns his chair towards Grey giving him his undivided attention.
"Well Gramps, as you know, I am your oldest grandchild."
"Yes, you are. You will be eleven years old in let's see…six more months. I'm quite aware." My dad smiles at him.
"Yes. But that isn't what I want to discuss with you. What I want to talk about is GEH." I put my book down and look up. This is getting interesting. "I have a proposal for you Gramps. I want your support in taking over GEH when I get through with college. And in turn…well I don't have much I can offer right now, but I will promise to give up my first year's salary to a charity of your choice." I can't help but chuckle. Wonder what Henry would say about that. My dad nods slowly and crosses his arms looking quite serious.
"I see. Well Grey, that is quite an attractive proposal but as you know your Uncle Henry is the CEO of Grey Enterprises Holdings now. I am just the founder and President of the board and the selection of Uncle Henry's predecessor will not be my decision. Uncle Henry is who you should be talking too. But tell me…why do you think you're the man for the job and what about your cousins or brothers and sister?"
"Well Gramps, besides the fact that I am the oldest and it just makes sense, I am smart, dedicated, hardworking…I mean do you see anyone else down here this early to talk business with you?" My dad laughs and nods.
"I sure don't…point well made. Continue." I get up and pour myself another cup of coffee and top my dad's off. I can't help myself and I cut in.
"Grey…what about Stella? She is super smart. What if she wants to be the CEO?"
"Uncle Caleb…you were not invited to this meeting. You are not on the agenda."
"The agenda?" My dad and I say at the same time laughing. This kid is serious. I take my coffee and sit back down smiling. Smart little fuck just put me in my place. My dad grins at me and then gives Grey his attention.
"So, Grey…talk to me. Tell me your plans for the company and again to Uncle Caleb's point, why not Stella?"
"Well Stella is very smart, I will give you that. And as the second oldest, she should have some consideration. But, she is always reading and I feel pretty sure she will run Grey Publishing someday. So, I think we can rule her out. Then, there is Steele. I'm sure because he is Uncle Henry's son, he will get considered before me. That is why I need your support. And anyway, Steele is much better at sports then me, so he will probably play for the Mariners or Seahawks or run those organizations now that they are owned by the Grey's." Grey pauses and drinks his orange juice and I nod in agreement at my dad. Kid has a good point. Steele is the most athletic kid I have ever seen.
"Well those are good points Grey. What about your sister or brothers? Your sister is the third oldest cousin, you skipped over her." My dad leans back in his chair giving Grey his full attention.
"Gramps…Charlotte just wants to be a mom, not that it is bad. But if not, she should just shop for a job because she loves to do that. Jason will work for my dad because my Mom says Tank always has to have the last word and will make a good lawyer. So, he is going to work at Grey Trevelyan and Sawyer when he grows up. Ricki…I think he will work with Aunt Timmi because he loves animals and she needs someone to take her business over, so why not one of her sons. My mom says she is never there and needs to sell it or get someone else to run it." My dad and I look at each other. Phoebe needs to watch what she says in front of the kids. It is true, Timmi doesn't work much but she has a good staff.
"I see you have given this a lot of thought. Continue Grey." My dad rubs his chin and squints his eyes intently.
"CJ, Cooper, Dora and baby Christian…we don't know about them they are too little, but if they prove themselves I might hire them. Then there is Delilah Mary. Come on…she is too shy and nice to work at Grey House but she sings all the time, so maybe she will be a singer." I laugh out loud again because that is so true. She is the sweetest little thing in the entire world. "Then there is Vivi and she is going to be a skater like Lainey. That just leaves Anabelle and she is going to have to take over Uncle Teddy's company I guess."
"What about my company? Doesn't anyone want to come work at Grey House Designs?" I feel a bit offended, then laugh thinking how funny this all is.
"Uncle Caleb, no one can do what you do. Mom says you are the boy genius. So, as it is right now…we got no one. I guess you and Lainey should have a bunch of babies and maybe one of them can help you out." At this my dad laughs too.
"Well Grey…you make some very good points." My dad looks up when Henry walks in the room.
"Good morning. Are we the only early risers?" Henry grabs a cup and looks for the tea. Like my mom, he is a tea drinker. Before we can respond he jumps in. "Man, those beds are soft. I could barely climb out of it this morning. Timmi is sleeping like a log and I was miserable. What are you doing up so early Grey?"
Grey looks at my dad then clears his throat nodding at my dad that he will answer Henry.
"Well Uncle Henry I was talking to Gramps about GEH. I would like to be the CEO when I get out of college." Henry looks up from pouring his tea and pursing his lips nods slowly.
"Well that is very forward thinking for your young years. But you do realize that when you are out of college – let's see in roughly 12 years…and that is if you don't go to grad school…I will only be 49 years old and I will still be working. Any thoughts on how we can co-manage?" Henry sits down and winks at Grey and gives him his attention.
"Uncle Henry…49 is likes super super old. So…I'm sure you will be ready to retire. But if not…then that is why I was trying to have a private conversation with Gramps to get his support when the time comes." Henry opens his eyes wide at Grey's inference that he is interrupting.
"Ohhh…I see how it is. You think you can get Gramps to support you in a takeover. Hmmm…that is called collusion my little nephew. But tell you what…if you are serious and you want to be the CEO of GEH someday…I would be more than happy to work with you and make sure that you take my place…when the time comes. That is if your cousins and siblings are not interested."
"We have already addressed that…Grey has convinced us that no one else is qualified or has other career paths." I laugh and get up for more coffee. Grey is a piece of work. "Grey, what are your suggestions for improving GEH?" I ask him because he never did address that. He looks up at me and shrugs.
"How am I supposed to know Uncle Caleb, but as Gramps says all the time…there is always room for improvement." We all laugh.
"Well played Grey. I will be anxiously waiting for you to replace me when the right time comes. You're a fart smeller." Grey burst out laughing. I laugh too remembering my grandfather, Carrick, use to say that to us when we were young, making us laugh like crazy. My dad has a moment of melancholy on his face, clearly remembering the times his dad said that to him too.
"Uncle Henry…you meant to say I am a smart feller not a fart smeller." Grey is cracking up and just like that he is a ten-year-old kid again, and not trying to take over the world.
"Oh…yea…that is what I meant to say." Henry winks at Grey and gets up and grabs the newspaper that my dad has now put aside.
"I'm going to go see if Lainey is awake. Anyone know what time breakfast is being served?" I stretch lifting my arms up and the butler standing in the corner gives me a strange look. I want to tell him we may be ridiculously rich but we aren't snobs.
"Breakfast will be served at 8:30 promptly per Mrs. Grey's instructions sir." The butler informs me. Christ get the stick out of your ass dude. I look at my watch and it is only 6:30 so I sit back down knowing Lainey will have my ass if I wake her up this early. I might go up in thirty minutes and see if she wants to knock one off before breakfast. I could use a nice slow fuck too start my day.
We all flew in together last night except Phoebe, Jax and their kids. They flew in with the Sawyers and Reid the day before. We got in last night around 10:30 and all of us went straight to bed. With the time difference, we were exhausted.
"Cal, Ted's buddy is a whisky collector and invited us to his cellar this afternoon. I think the ladies wanted to go shopping. You in?" Henry leans back. "Dad you can come too but I thought mom wanted to drag you to some book stores."
"Oh fuck me." My dad looks over at Grey. "I apologize Grey, don't tell your mother or Grammie I just said that. That was crass. Where did you hear mom was dragging me all over Dublin Henry?" My dad rolls his eyes.
"She mentioned it on the plane last night and said you had some little quaint restaurant that you go to when you are in Dublin that she also wanted to go to."
"That part is true, I enjoy the restaurant, but have you ever been with your mother in a book store? She spends hours and hours and hours. I should get her up now if that is what she wants to do." He sighs and I can tell he isn't feeling it.
"Let me check with Lainey to make sure she wants to go shopping. She hasn't been here before so she might want to go sight-seeing." Henry mouths 'pussy whipped' so only I can see. And I move my hand in the 'blow me' gesture making him laugh.
I decide to leave the table and go look through the estate before I wake Lainey. The house is four hundred years old, made of stone and once belonged to a Duke. The home has 18 bedrooms and is not rented to the public. It is privately owned by a member of the Royal family. I take note of all the sconces, wood and stone work and take a few photos. After wondering around for almost forty minutes I go back into our bedroom and find Lainey stretching on the floor. God damn she is limber. She is bent over touching her hands to the floor. She turns her head and smiles at me knowing full well that she is teasing me so I come up behind her and pick her up by the waist throwing her on the bed.
"Good morning beautiful. Did you sleep well?"
She traces her finger over my lip then kisses me pulling on my lower lip. "I slept great. Where have you been?" Her hand snakes under my shirt over my back and down my sweat pants caressing my ass.
"Oh, someone is feeling frisky?" I pull up her tank top and pull on her nipple with my teeth. "I was downstairs having coffee with my dad, Grey and Henry then I walked around the estate, took some photo's, and came back here. You should see the water fountain in the middle of the library. It is cut from Chinese White Marble Stone. It is fantastic."
Lainey looks at me and smiles. "Caleb? You know what one of the things I love most about you?"
"Hmm?" I continue to suck on her breast. "My big dick or my tongue." She pinches my ass.
"No, I'm being serious." She pulls my face up to make me look at her. "I love how you see the world. Since I have met you, I have started to appreciate the beauty of things I never noticed before. The way a building stands majestically on a hill. The way a flower bed is laid out, and the colors in a sunset. I now look at the beauty of a carved staircase, and the grain on a wooden bowl and I appreciate the beauty of nature so much more. You gave me that and I learn from you every day. Sometimes I wish I had your eyes for just five minutes. I bet the world is so beautiful from your view." She is almost whispering.
"The most beautiful view I have is looking at you Lainey." I kiss her softly, but then pull away. "You don't understand what you have done for me. Before you, I saw the world the way you just described. But I was so angry I didn't appreciate it. I just went through the motions. Since you came into my life, I enjoy everything so much more. But thanks for telling me that. You know sometimes I feel like you must think I am crazy because I stop to feel and examine everything. But one thing I learned from Evangeline was that I wasn't using my sense of touch enough. Your fingertips can tell you so much, like the flaws in a grain of wood or a rough ridge in a slab of marble." I smile. I didn't come up here to talk shop. I came up to make love to my fiancé. "Your fingertips can also tell you when your fiancé's pussy is wet and ready." I grin and reach down to her panties.
"Caleb…here I was trying to stroke your ego and tell you seriously how much I admire you and you find a way to turn it into sex." She nibbles on my neck and I lean back to pull my shirt up over my head then flip her over pulling her top off completely. I softly lick my way up her back and press my erection between her ass cheeks.
"No Caleb. Not there." Damn it. Iced out again. She will only do anal when she has been drinking. I reach my hand down from behind and stroke her wet opening and find her nub over her panties then pull them off of her. I pull her up and place her on all fours and then begin to lick her pussy from behind when there is a large pounding on my door.
"Caleb…wakey wakey." God damn Ted. I hear the door knob jiggle but thankfully I locked it. "You want to go with Henry and I to sample some good whiskey? Cal…Oh little bro…are you playing Doctor in there?" Lainey jumps up and runs into the bathroom, worried somehow that Ted will walk in. I try and grab her hand but she gets away.
"Fuck off Ted. I will be down in 30 minutes." I can still hear him on the other side of the door and now he is laughing.
"Bull shit…you will be done in five. Morning Lainey." I hear Ted walk away and fall back on the bed. Cockblocked by my brother. I will make him pay for that later.
"Lainey, he's gone…come back out baby." I hear her turn on the shower and I jump up stripping out of my clothes. I can handle a stand and slam, makes no difference to me. "Move over baby." When I get to the bathroom Lainey is laughing. It is one of those old tubs with an attached shower hose. No way we can fuck in this thing without killing ourselves. I pick her up out of the tub, push her against the sink and plunge into her. "This will have to do for now baby. We will take it nice and slow later."
"Good morning everyone." I guess Gen and I were the last ones up other than my little brother who is probably knocking one off right now. The table is full of family members including the Sawyers and both of Reid's grandmothers who are in their nineties. Reid is going around the table hugging everyone and I nudge him and shake his hand. "Nervous?"
"Not a bit. Excited. I admit I didn't think I'd ever get here, but I found the one. She is everything to me." He has changed so much since meeting Ainsley. He is totally in love with her and I am happy for him.
"Can you go out with Henry, Caleb and me to sample some whiskey today? I think my sister has the shackles on Jax today because the kids are here."
"I'd love to but Ainsley and I are going to try and get away for a lunch today. We haven't had a second alone since I got here and we have the rehearsal dinner tonight. But have fun. Hey, I have to talk to my grandma. She is giving me the evil Italian eye."
I don't plan on staying out drinking all day with my brothers. In fact, I plan on finding out where the ladies are having lunch, then surprise my wife and whisk her away for the afternoon. We haven't had three waking hours alone since the twins were born. We need this time but I know she wants to have some girl time this morning. I plan to find her after lunch then I am taking her to The Westbury Hotel, a swanky place where we have a couple's massage lined up and then I am going to fuck her into next week for the rest of the day and night. I told my dad we would be back in the morning and miss the dinner he had planned for the family tonight. At first, he pushed back but then I talked to him man to man.
"Dad…do you know when was the last time my wife and I had sex in the morning or spontaneously in the afternoon? The twins wake us up early. We get them fed and changed then the other girls start waking up. Then I go to work and when I get home at night it is a fucking zoo around there. Stella and Delilah Mary need help with their homework…and don't get me started on how much homework my five-year-old daughter gets…then Anabelle is out of her mind these days because she isn't getting enough attention and the twins are not on the same schedule and by the time we get to bed…we are exhausted. On weekends, I try and take the babies so Gen can have a break but the zoo never closes. I have five kids under the age of 8. Sometimes I think I've lost my mind."
"Well Ted you know you can bring the kids over anytime and have alone time." My dad thinks it is that simple.
"Dad, do you remember when we were kids and you went ballistic that we were involved in too many activities. I think Henry and I had baseball, music lessons, tutors, Phoebe had dance, girl scouts, mom had all these committees and Caleb was constantly getting lost or was tired. I remember you lost your shit at one point and made us all give up some activities and start eating dinner as a family. Well I'm there. Stella and Delilah have all these after school activities and Anabelle started gymnastics which I support because she gets lost in the shuffle sometimes and this is time for her and Gen…but we are over extended and then Gen has all these volunteer commitments. I'm done and putting a stop to all of it. I can't drop my kids off to you and mom and expect you to taxi them around. Maybe when we get back from this trip we will have less on our plate and I can drop the girls off more. But I wouldn't do that to you and mom right now. So, this weekend away, I am thinking Gen and I can have some alone time…just 24 hours…we will rejoin you tomorrow before the wedding…but we need to connect, talk about streamlining our crazy schedules and just be alone. You get that right?"
My dad crossed his arm and looked down and then raised his eyes smiling slowly. "Boy I do remember that. You are right Ted. I did lose my shit at that time. Your mom had you kids running ragged and I would come home from work and no one would be home then you would all barge in well after dinner time exhausted, fighting, hungry. I laid the law down and it was the best thing for our family and your mom and me. I get where you're coming from. Alone time and intimacy with your wife is what keeps a marriage going. I always have made time for your mom in that way." I cringe.
"Okay good talk dad…so you are cool about Gen and me going away for 24." Christ, I didn't want to hear that shit about him and my mom.
Caleb, Henry and I have just finished sampling some high-end whisky from the private cellar of a business associate of mine and they want to head to lunch. We are in the back of a limo being driven by security Mike hired to take us around.
"That was great. Thanks for arranging it Ted," Henry leans back and rubs his stomach. "But I'm starving now. Let's get some lunch."
"Okay but let's go close to where the ladies are having lunch. I am going to go pick up Gen right after and take her away for 24 hours."
"Why are you doing that? I thought Dad called this a mandatory family weekend." Cal uses quotation marks when mimicking my dad.
"Because we haven't had a good fuck session in months and we don't have five kids with us so I am taking my wife away for 24 hours and fucking her into next week. No interruptions, crying babies, little girl drama. Just me, my dick and my wife's sweet ass. You have no idea how bad we need this."
Cal rolls his eyes. "Why can't you fuck once you get your kids to bed." At that comment, Henry snorts.
"Caleb…you are clueless. You have one kid and you have always had help with her. Try having three rambunctious little boys or five small kids like Ted. Getting your wife in the mood when she has baby vomit on her, hasn't shaved her legs in days…let alone had time to do the big shave is not easy. If you do have five minutes for sex, you hop on and fuck like a mad man because you worry that one of the kids will come barging in before you can get off. Just wait little brother until you and Lainey have a few kids back to back and then tell us how that fuck party is going."
I can't help but laugh at Henry. Everything he just said is true and Caleb is about to find out once he and Lainey have kids that while they are the best thing that happens to you, they suck the energy right out of you. I can't wait to get Gen alone.
"So, Caleb. were you balls deep when I pounded on your door this morning?" I laugh when Caleb flips me off with both fingers.
"You prick, I was about to be then when you pounded on the door. Lainey got nervous that you were walking in and ran to the bathroom to hide."
I grin. "Welcome to my world. Only I didn't barge in like my nightly interruption from Delilah Mary who has come in our room every night for the last three weeks scared and wanting to sleep with us. Sorry I kept you from getting laid. Not really. Wait until you get married Caleb. You will see how your sex life will change."
"Ah…but ye of little faith…I did indeed get a quickie stand and slam in the bathroom…so don't feel too smug."
"Yea…definitely not married yet. I don't remember the last stand and slam I got. Hmmm…maybe I will see if I can get Timmi to indulge me this afternoon." Henry rubs his hands and raises his eyebrows before opening the door as we arrive to our restaurant.
After a quick lunch, I head down the street to get my wife. Caleb and Henry were going to hit another distillery before meeting Lainey and Timmi back at the estate.
"Hi…what are you doing here?" My wife is in the middle of lunch with Timmi and Lainey and looks around me to see if I am alone. "How did you know where I was?" I look at Timmi who grins. She text me earlier to tell me where they were eating lunch.
"I'm here to take you away for the rest of the day and the night. I booked a hotel, a massage and thought you would like to get away."
Gen looks shocked. "Seriously? We can't do that. I don't have my clothes. They are at the estate and what about the mandatory family weekend?"
"First of all, my parents know we need this and they are on board. We will be back tomorrow for lunch and then get ready to go to the wedding with the family." I pull her up by her hand, lean in and whisper in her ear, "And trust me you won't be needing any clothes. Let's go." She actually blushes and I hear Timmi and Lainey laughing and cooing over this gesture. I will probably end up in hot water with my brothers for being all romantic, but this will be worth it. My wife is smiling more than I have seen her smile in months. This is going to be a great night.
"Ready?" I am holding Ainsley's coat as she tells her mom we are walking down the street to a local pub for lunch. Finn is upstairs playing with Grey and Ainsley's parents will watch the boys. I help her with her coat and we head outside where it is foggy and damp. I take Ainsley's hand. "I think this is the first time we have been alone since I got here."
"I know. My parent's house is small, there is no place to really be alone. I miss you. Are you nervous?" Ainsley looks up at me.
"Not a bit. I'm excited for tomorrow to just hurry up and get here. I just want to make you my wife, and Finn my son. By the way, Jax has the adoption papers with him for me to adopt Finn. We will still have to go to court when we get back to Seattle but this gets the ball rolling."
We walk another block and then enter an old pub with a fire going. We take a table right next to the fire and Ainsley waves to the owner whom she has known since she was a kid, and he comes over and gives her a hug and congratulates us. We order our lunch and then Ainsley looks up at me. She seems nervous. "Are you okay? You seem quiet. All this wedding stuff getting to you? In two days, we will be alone for almost two weeks."
"No…I'm fine. Everything is done, and I just want to have fun tomorrow and enjoy the moment." She pauses and looks down. "I love you so much Reid. You came into my life when I never thought I could love again…and here I am, so in love I feel like a school girl sometime. You are everything to me and to Finn." She starts to cry and I push my chair closer.
"Baby…don't cry. Why are you crying?"
"I have something to tell you." Oh shit. Please god don't tell me she has changed her mind.
"What's wrong?" She takes my hand and then gets up and pushes me back so I move my chair. She crawls on my lap and looks me in the eyes.
"I was trying to find the right time to tell you but I feel you should know before tomorrow. I think you will be happy, but I am still nervous to tell you."
I have no idea what she is trying to tell me. I am starting to get nervous and a bit pissed. "Just fucking tell me Ainsley. Your freaking me out here." She leans in and whispers in my ear.
"We are going to have a baby. I'm pregnant." I stand up with her still in my lap and catch her before she falls.
"What? Seriously? A baby?" I can feel my grin stretch across my face. Thirty-eight years old and I am going to have my first child. Well…second child. But my first experience with a baby. We are having a baby. I pick her up and swing her around causing everyone to look at us. "We are having a baby." I tell no one in particular, but loud enough for everyone to hear. They all clap and I kiss Ainsley several times.
"So, you are happy?" She is smiling too. God I'm totally pumped up and excited.
"Are you kidding me? I thought getting married tomorrow was the best thing that ever happened to me…but you have just given me the best wedding present ever. Are you okay? Are you feeling okay? How far along are you? Have you been to the doctor? Should we cancel the honeymoon?" Ainsley laughs at me and guides me to sit back down. Admittedly I am in shock.
"Yes, I feel fine. I took the pregnancy test last week so not far along…maybe six weeks. No, I haven't been to the doctor yet. I thought when we get back from the honeymoon I'd go. No, we are not canceling our honeymoon. Are you crazy? Once we have the baby we won't get away for a long time."
"When can we tell people? My mom will be out of her mind happy."
'Well, my mom knows, but that is it. I'd like to keep it quiet until after we see a doctor and you know get further along. But…if you want to tell your mom…I understand. But no one else…especially Phoebe. Then the world will know." We both laugh. I can't believe Ainsley is pregnant. I am so excited I can barely eat lunch.
I drop off Ainsley and rush back to the estate to change my clothes for the rehearsal and dinner. As soon as I am dressed I run down the hall and find my parents room. When I knock on the door my mom answers and I can hear the shower running. Good, my dad must be taking a shower.
I whisper though I don't see anyone around. "Mom, I have to tell you something."
"Reid…what's wrong? Is everything okay?" She looks up at me. I am well over a foot taller than my mom so I scoot down a bit and whisper in her ear.
"No everything is great, but you can't tell anyone what I'm about to tell you."
"Reid…I don't like keeping secrets from your dad."
"Okay I won't tell you then." This gets her every time.
"Fine but you better not get me in trouble. What is it?' She shuts the door in case my dad comes out of the bathroom. Good thing. I don't want to see him in his naked glory.
I lean down closer. "Ainsley's pregnant. You are going to be a grandma again."
"Oh my god…Oh my god…Oh my god." My mom is jumping up and down. "I can't believe it. I never thought you'd settle down and now you'll have a wonderful wife, a darling little boy and a baby on the way." She starts bawling her eyes out. Jeez who knew this would make her so happy. "I've prayed for this for fifteen years." That makes me laugh but I hug her and we are laughing and she makes me water up she is crying so hard with happiness. The door opens and my dad is standing there with a towel wrapped around him.
"What the hell is going on out here? Everything ok?" He looks at my mom and can tell she is crying.
"Everything is fine Bear. Just having a moment with my baby boy." My dad rolls his eyes and shuts the door. "I have to get ready honey or we will be late. Can I say anything to Ainsley?"
"Yes, she told me I could tell you. Mom…I am so happy. Ainsley was worth the wait." I turn around and head downstairs. Twenty-four hours from now, I will have a wife, a great son and now a baby on the way. Life is good.
Twenty-Four Hours Later
"Reid, you may now recite your wedding vows that you have written for Ainsley," the priest nods towards me. I look over at my family and the full chapel. We were both raised catholic so we had no problem agreeing to a small intimate ceremony presided by the local priest. The chapel is small and barely holds our 75 guests. Jax is my best man and Ainsley's sister is her matron of honor. That is all the wedding party we wanted. I look down at Finn who is standing between Ainsley and me, which is where I want him to be. I put my hand on his shoulder and with my other hand take Ainsley's hand and kiss it softly.
"Ainsley and Finn, I knew within the first second I saw you both on that boat at Coeur d'Alene Lake that the three of us would be a family. I can't say how I knew. I just knew. I wasn't looking to be anyone's boyfriend, husband or father, but it didn't take me long after spending time with you to know I was right. Finn, I have been given the wonderful privilege and gift to become your father. I take that as seriously as I take marrying your beautiful mother. I will love you as much as any future siblings your mother and I bring into our family. I will guide you and take care of you. I will make sure you always have what you need. I will probably have to be the bad guy every once in a while, and discipline you like a loving father must do. But mostly I want to thank you for loving me too and for allowing me to be your father. It is the greatest honor I have ever been given." I bring his face up to look at me lifting his chin and he has tears in his eyes and I know he needs me, and I won't let him down. "I love you buddy." I tap his nose and he nods with a big smile. I look out again and see my dad and he nods at me and I am stunned to see him wipe his eyes. I take a deep breath then look at Ainsley and kiss her hand again.
"Ainsley Máire O'Brien Daniels…I love you. I am so in love with you. I have, to the utter shock of all those that know me, fallen so hard for you that I can honestly tell you that there is rarely a moment that I don't think of you and Finn. I have looked forward to this moment every waking hour since you said yes. I will always honor you. I will provide for you, Finn and our future children." I wink at her, no one but our mothers know our secret. "I look forward to more of the laughs we share as I love your great sense of humor. I love our quiet nights, our easy life. Holding your hand and watching those painful shows like say "Yes to the Dress" or whatever it is called, and fighting with you for the last handful of popcorn. It is all I ever really wanted. But it took me my whole adult life to find you. Your loyalty, your passion and care of others are what I value. You have felt and experienced pain and didn't have it easy. You are so strong. I pledge to you that as my wife…you will never have to go through life's experiences alone again. I will always be there for you. Thank you for saying yes. Thank you for giving me Finn. Thank you for loving me. Forever baby. Here is to forever."
"Ainsley, you may now recite your vows to Reid." The priest nods and waits as Ainsley composes herself and wipes a few tears.
"Reid Salvatore Sawyer, you are my knight in shining armor. You didn't just rescue Finn and I that day on the lake from a potential disaster boat trip," I smile down at her and she laughs, "God what was I thinking? Anyway, you rescued us from loneliness. Grief. The struggle of being a single working mother trying to teach my little American son how to play baseball, not the most common sport here in Ireland." The crowd laughs and I nod. She can't throw a ball for shit. "You walked into our lives and the days and nights just got better and much brighter. Quickly you brought joy and smiles to our faces that hadn't been there in a long time. But the best part is…I fell in love. I found a man that is kind, gentle, giving and I know you are completely devoted to Finn and to me." God, she is beautiful with her long auburn hair flowing just the way I like it. "I look forward to every day for the rest of our lives. Thank you for loving us. For taking care of us and mostly for giving us a future that includes the most wonderful, handsome man on the planet. I will love you passionately for the rest of our lives."
We exchange rings and then the moment I never knew I wanted until I met Ainsley O'Brian Daniels is finally here. The priest puts one hand on Finn, and clasps his hand over ours.
"I bless this marriage in the name of the father and the son and the holy spirit…Ladies and gentlemen, please let me introduce to you…the Reid Sawyer family. Mr. Sawyer, you may now kiss your lovely bride, Mrs. Ainsley Sawyer." I put one arm around Finn and pull him close feeling his head against my hip, and take my other hand and pull Ainsley to me and bend down and kiss her softly before whispering in her ear. "I love you. I love all three of you."