NOTE: I do not own any of 'The O.C' characters. you can thank FOX. If you have any questions or comment you can e-mail me at liverbrain22@hotmail.com

(Please read and review!)

Chapter One

Kirsten glanced up at the clock on her desk. It was noon; time for lunch. She left her office and made her way down to the end of the hall and knocked softly on the door that was halfway open.

Ryan looked up from his papers and smiled at Kirsten. "Lunch time already?" He asked, looking at the clock on his desk.

Kirsten laughed, "Sure is. And I've been informed by Sandy to have lunch at the Lighthouse. He's expecting us in." Kristen looked at her watch. "Ten minutes."

"Okay." Ryan said, closing everything up in front of him. He was working on one the new model home projects and he definitely needed a break from it. "I guess we don't really have a choice but the Lighthouse." He said with a smile and followed Kirsten outside to their cars.

Kirsten and Ryan arrived at the Lighthouse just on time and took their usual seats. Seconds later Sandy appeared with a waitress behind him carrying three plates of food for them. Sandy slowly took his seat next to Kirsten in pain. You could tell that Sandy was still doing his morning surfing. Which Kirsten did not approve of, especially since he had just turned fifty-five this year.

"I see you're still surfing in the morning, Sandy." Ryan said, gesturing to his painful seating.

"Oh course, even if the wife doesn't like it." Sandy said, kissing his wife. "So how goes it with the Atwoods?"

Ryan shoved a fry in his mouth. "Good. The boy's are doing well. And Marissa's with Summer right now getting ready for the dinner tonight." Ryan said, taking a sip of his coke.

"That's good. So, what time would you like us over?"

"Supper should be ready by seven. So, I guess around five or so. Whenever, really." Ryan replied.

"Sounds good. So how does it feel?" Sandy said. Ryan gave him his look of confusion. "The boys are turning ten, how does it feel?"

"Old." Ryan replied. "I can't believe I'm thirty."

Kirsten and Sandy laughed at him. "They've grown up so fast." Kirsten commented. "I remember it was just the other day when you and Marissa were getting married...now you have a zoo at home with three kids!"

"Definitely a zoo.especially with three boys. And Marissa is still talking about having more kids. I think its just because we don't have a girl yet."

"Oh my.four kids?" Kirsten gasped.

"No, no, no.we're not having another one. Ben, Aden and Connor are enough.. Too much." Ryan said. Marissa had been trying to convince him for over a year on having another child. He did not want another one. The boys were too old to have another sibling anyway. The twins, Ben and Aden were turning ten tomorrow and Conner was five. Another baby would be out of the question.

"Hey, we're always free at night if you want to drop the kids off at our house. You and Marissa deserve a break. So, don't be afraid to ask. I love the boys.Plus they help me around the house sometimes. I'm getting too old to do the stuff I normally used to do."

Ryan laughed. "Thanks, but really.Everything is going good." Just then Ryan's cell phone went off. "Sorry." Ryan said, taking out the cell phone.

"Hello.I understand.Okay, I'll come and pick him up." Ryan flipped his cell phone off and tossed it back into his suit pocket. "Sorry guys. I have to go pick up Ben at school. He's in trouble.again." He turned to Kirsten. "I'll be back in less than a half hour."

"Oh, no.Take the rest of the day off it's okay. You need to get ready for the boy's birthday dinner."

"Okay, thanks. I'll see you guys later tonight." Ryan said, then left the Lighthouse. He then made his way over to Harbor Elementary School.

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"Coop! Seriously, you should have put Conner in afternoon kindergarten. Cause that way you could get better sleep in the morning and you have the afternoon all to yourself." Summer exclaimed. "Conner! Marissa, please get this kid off of me."

"Summer, he's five.What do you expect him to do? Stay in the cart and watch me shop for food? I don't think so." Marissa explained grabbing Conner's hand. "Come on sweetie, get off of Summer's leg."

Summer glared at Conner. "Summer! Don't scare him!" Marissa yelled out in the middle of the frozen food aisle. "Conner, why don't you go get Mommy some ice cream from one of those freezers over there."

Conner let go of Marissa's hand and dashed over to the ice cream selections.

Marissa pulled some meat out of one of the freezers and placed it in her shopping cart. "Summer, don't you think its time you settle down? You know.have a family?"

"You mean, have kids and ruin my figure? No way, Coop." Summer said.

"Wait, are you saying that my figure is ruined because I had three kids?"

"No, of course not Marissa! You're so lucky, unlike me. You see, if I eat crap, I gain weight.But if you eat crap, you're still thin."

Marissa laughed at her. "Okay, so you don't want kids. What about a husband?"

"Guys are selfish-" Summer yelped and turned around. "Conner!" She then grabbed the ice cream from the little boy. "This is why I don't want kids.they do stuff like that. They freeze your legs with ice cream."

"It's funny." Conner said, running over to Marissa and standing behind her. "Mommy, make her stop looking at me like that!"

Marissa picked up Conner and placed him in the grocery cart. "Don't worry, Aunt Summer won't do anything to you."

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Ryan parked his car in the parking lot of Harbor Elementary School and made his way up the steps of the school. It was the second time this month that he had to come and pick up Ben from school. He stepped into the office and saw Ben slouched in a seat waiting for him. Ben's blue eyes starred up at Ryan's, trying to read his mind. Ben wasn't sure if his dad was going to get mad at him or not. Tonight was his birthday dinner, so of course his dad wouldn't get mad at him.

Ryan walked up to the secretary and introduced himself. Seconds later the principle came out and they went into her office, leaving Ben alone in the school office.

"Mr. Atwood, please have a seat." Mrs. Flood said, motioning to an empty chair. Ryan took a seat.

"Mr. Atwood, this is the second time this month that I've had to call you. We do not tolerate any fighting here. We're suspending him for the rest of the day, just like the last time. If this happens again he is suspended for a couple of days."

"Don't worry, it won't happen again, Mrs. Flood." Ryan replied.

"Good, then." They both stood up and shook each other's hand and Ryan left the office.

Ben Atwood looked up at his father and could tell he had disappointed him again. He hated when his father didn't talk to him. On the ride home they didn't speak a word to each other-not one.

Ryan pulled up into his driveway and recognized Summer's car. Marissa and Summer must be back from shopping, he thought to himself. He parked the car and Ben and him walked into the house. Marissa and Summer were in the foyer tying up streamers and balloons.

"Ryan, you're home! Ben." Marissa turned to Ryan. "Why is Ben home?" She asked, her voice edgy.

"Ben, go to your room.And no video games." Ryan yelled out to his son. He then turned to Marissa. "He's fighting again, Marissa. Second time this month.Next time you're getting him. I have a lot of work to do now, so I'll just be in my office." Ryan said, hanging up his jacket.

"Whoa, grumpy." Summer said, blowing up another balloon.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Seth closed his locker shut and starred up at the clock on the wall. He had one hour to get over to Ryan's house. Impossible, he thought to himself. It takes an hour and a half to get there, coming from San Diego.

"Cohen, you're heading out already?" Chris asked, looking at his friend. Chris was a good friend of Seth's. They had gone through med. school together and ended up in the same hospital, working together.

"Yeah, I have the whole weekend off, finally."

"What's the special occasion? Did you finally get yourself a girl?" His friend joked, hitting him on the arm.

"No, I'm visiting my family. My brother's twins are turning ten tomorrow.And no, I don't have a girl.Yet, that is." Seth added. He grabbed his coat from the hanger and left the hospital. He was wiped out; he had been working since five o'clock in the morning. But he was used to that by now.

Seth started up his car and got onto Highway 55 and headed towards Newport Beach.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

"DAD!" Conner yelled out from the family room. "DAD!" He called out again, realizing his father wasn't coming.

Ryan stood up from his desk in the den and walked over to the family room where Conner and Aden were watching television. "What is it, Conner?" Ryan asked.

"Aden stole the remote from me.Then he said he was going to fry me in the deep fryer.Then he said-"

"Tattle-tale! Dad, that's not true, he stole the remote from me first!"

Before Ryan could say anything Ben came into the living room and sat down on the couch. Ryan knew that Ben was testing him. Too much like him when he was a kid, Ryan thought to himself. Ben glared at Ryan and then turned his attention to the television.

"Okay, Conner.Give Aden the remote back." He turned to Aden, "Aden, don't deep fry your brother." He then turned to Ben, "No television." Then Ryan walked away into the kitchen.

"Hey, when is Sandy and Kirsten going to be here?" Marissa asked, peeling potatoes.

"Around five." Ryan said, looking up at the clock. It was a quarter to five. "When's your dad coming? And where did Summer go?"

"My dad's coming at five and Summer went home. She should be back any minute. She just had to change."

Ryan poked his head out of the kitchen, making sure Ben was not watching television. "Ben, why don't you come in here and help your mom." Ryan said. He didn't want to get mad at the kid, but it was hard. He wasn't supposed to fight, but he never listened to either of them.

Ben made his way over to the kitchen and sat down on a stool at the counter.

"Here, peel these." Marissa ordered, giving him carrots and a peeler.

Ryan walked up to Marissa, who went back to the stove, and put his arms around her waist and gave her a kiss. "Here, let me." Ryan said, taking over.

"Hey, guys.separate seats, no sex in the champagne room." Ben yelled out to his parents.

Ryan and Marissa turned around and started to laugh. "And where did you hear that, Ben?" Marissa asked.

"Uncle Seth."

"Ah, I should have guessed." Marissa replied. Just then the doorbell rang.

Ben flew off the stool and rushed to the door and opened it.

"Ben! Happy Birthday!" Kirsten said, giving him a kiss on the cheek.

Ben wiped his cheek. "Hey Grandma.Hey Grandpa!" Ben replied. Sandy and Kirsten stepped into the house and were greeted by Aden and Conner.

"Happy birthday, Aden!" Kirsten and Sandy said, giving him a hug. Sandy pulled out two cards from his pocket and gave it to Aden and Ben. "Those are your gifts.But don't open them up just yet." Sandy said, winking at them.

Conner tugged at Sandy dress pants. "Where's my gift?" He asked.

Sandy reached into his pocket and pulled out a business card. "Here." Conner took it and ran off to the living room.

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Marissa, Ryan, Summer, Jimmy, Sandy and Kirsten were all in the kitchen talking.

Summer looked at her watch. "Isn't Seth supposed to be here?" She asked.

"He's late for everything, Summer." Ryan replied, walking out of the kitchen.

"Oh, so now you want to see him?" Marissa laughed. "This afternoon you were just expressing how much you didn't want to see him."

Summer smiled sheepishly. "I never said I didn't want to see him." Marissa laughed at her. But deep inside Summer was always thinking of Seth. He was the first real boyfriend that she had. They had dated on and off throughout high school. But once Seth decided he wanted to become a doctor and then moved away, she didn't want to move away. So they broke up and ever since then, neither of them has really dated anyone.

Ryan and his three boys were sitting in the living room watching television when Jimmy and Sandy joined them. The girls were in the kitchen gossiping.

Conner hopped onto Sandy's lap and gave him back his business card. "Here Grandpa. Dad said it wasn't money, so I don't want it anymore." Sandy laughed at his youngest grandson.

"Oh, so you wanted money?" Sandy asked, sarcastically.

"Why would you get money, squirt?" Aden asked.

"Shut up! I'm going to deep fry your head!" Conner screamed, jumping off Sandy's lap and running into the kitchen.

"Aden." Ryan warned and turned off the television. "Go apologize." Aden frowned at his dad and walked off to the kitchen. "Today, it's deep frying.Who knows what's tomorrow." Ryan laughed.

"Turn the T.V back on, Dad. I was watching that."

"You're not supposed to be watching T.V., Ben." Ryan said.

Ben didn't say anything and stomped off to his room, mumbling to himself.

"The joy of kids." Jimmy said and laughed.

Sandy straightened up in his seat. "What happened at school today?"

"He got into a fight again.Second time this month." Ryan replied. He didn't really want Sandy to get involved with his kids. He had done enough for him over the years. He gave him a home, a family, and education and much more.

"Want me to go talk to him?" Sandy asked.

"No, it's his birthday dinner. Won't help talking to him anyway, he doesn't tell me anything."

Sandy laughed. "Just like his father, I guess."

Ryan smiled. "Yeah, I guess so."

Kirsten came into the living room with a glass of champagne in her hand.
"Dinner is ready."

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"That was delicious Marissa." Sandy said, wiping his mouth with his napkin.

Seth was still not there. Secretly everyone was a little worried about him. But then again, he was always known for being late. He did have a hectic schedule.

(The doorbell rings)

Conner, Ben and Aden jumped from their seats and rushed to the door.

"Uncle Seth!" All three of them shouted.

"Whoa, whoa, whoa.Hold it there, let me get inside the house first." Seth said. He was carrying two gifts in his hand. He dropped his bag on the ground and handed Ben and Aden their gifts. They were about to shred the wrapping paper off their gifts when Marissa walked into the foyer.

"Hey, hold it Ben and Aden, no presents yet!" Marissa said, taking the gifts away from them. "Hey Seth." She embraced him into a hug. "We just finished dinner."

"Sorry.traffic was crazy getting here. But hey, I'm here now!" Seth shouted. "Time for birthday bumps!" He grabbed Ben and started to knee him from behind. "1.2.3.4.5.6.7.8.9.10 and one for good luck." He let go of Ben and did the same to Aden.

Both boys fell to the ground and giggled.

"Seth, are you harassing children now?" Summer asked, walking into the foyer.

"Oh, hey Summer. Yes, it's my new hobby."

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Ryan shut the door and sighed. "Ah, finally."

Marissa laughed and pulled Ryan into her. "Long day?"

"Too long, I can fall asleep right now. Where are the boys?"

"Downstairs with Seth and Summer. They were lucky to escape our parents." She grabbed Ryan's hand and they made their way into their basement. "Hey! No skateboarding in the house!" Marissa shouted out at Seth and her kids.

"Tried to stop them, Coop. But boys will be boys." Summer said. She was sitting on a couch flipping through a magazine. "I should head out, it's getting late. Have a great birthday Aden and Ben." Summer gave Ben and Aden a hug and went over to give Conner a hug.

Conner ran towards Ryan and Marissa and stood behind them.

"Whoa, Summer.What are you? The boogie-man-I mean woman?" Seth said, nudging Ben and Aden. "That was a good one, huh. You guys learning?" He whispered to them.

"Ha, Ha, Ha.Very funny. Not! We just have our differences."

"Sure, whatever makes you feel better."

"Okay, I'm out of here. Bye, Coop." She gave her a hug. "Bye, Ryan." She hugged him and went home for the night.

"So, are you sure it's okay if I crash here tonight?"

"Yeah, Uncle Seth can sleep in my room!" Conner bellowed out.

Marissa picked up Conner. "Seth, you look too exhausted to drive back to San Diego. Trust me, we have a lot of room in this is house." Marissa said. She was right. They did have a lot of room in the house. They lived in a five-bedroom house with three bathrooms.

"Okay, thanks.I'll just crash here on the couch."

"No, Uncle Seth, sleep in my room." Conner protested.

Ben and Aden were still on their skateboards and Aden went flying off his skateboard and fell to the ground.

Ryan rushed over to Aden and picked him up and examined his arm. "Seth, you just had to buy them skateboards didn't you?"

"Sorry-Here, let me look at his arm. I'm the doctor." Seth said, pushing Ryan aside. He looked at Aden's arm and frowned. "I'm afraid we're going to amputate the arm." Seth said, and Aden's eye's bulged out of his head. "Hey, don't worry, it's just a bruise.

"Seth!" Marissa said. Conner was squirming in her arms. "Okay, bedtime boys. It's way past your bedtime."

Aden, Ben and Conner ran upstairs.

"Well, we're off to bed, goodnight." Ryan said, going up the stairs to make sure the boys were going to bed.

"I'll just crash here.Conner will never sleep if I'm in his room. That kid has got a lot of energy." Seth said, throwing his body on the couch.

"Yeah, like you were when you were a kid." Marissa laughed. "See you in the morning. Goodnight."

"Night."

Marissa left and Seth was left alone in the basement.

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Okay guys I'm not sure if I'm going to continue this story. Tell me if you guys like it or not. If I get reviews I will continue writing it. This is just the starting,,.might sound a bit slow.but it will pick up really good. Something happens to the Atwood family, which causes Seth and Summer to come together..that's what I've planned so far.