FEEDBACK: - Be my guest. But please, be kind.
DISCLAIMER: The Charmed Ones, Wyatt Halliwell, Leo Wyatt, Victor Bennett and Cole Turner belong to Constance Burge, Brad Kern and Spelling Productions. Olivia and Harry McNeill are thankfully, my creations.
NOTE: The story picks up about two weeks after "In the Wake of Valhalla" - ?topicID34.topic
"AN AFTERNOON IN BABYSITTING" by RFK
"Phoebe and I are going to be in San Jose for most of the day," Piper said to her youngest sister, as she and the other two Charmed Ones descended the stairs. "Do you have everything you need?"
Paige nodded. "You mean for Wyatt? Sure. Plenty of diapers, lotion, baby powder, baby food, his milk . . . Don't worry, Piper."
The three sisters reached the bottom of the staircase, where Victor Bennett awaited them. He, along with Piper and Phoebe were dressed in mourning clothes for a Bennett aunt that had recently passed away. They planned to attend the funeral being held in nearby San Jose. And since Piper felt leery about bringing along her eight-month old baby, Paige had volunteered to stay behind and baby-sit. Especially since she had no family connections to the Bennetts.
"What about protection for Wyatt?" Phoebe added. "Maybe we should bring him along."
Paige heaved a sigh. "Don't worry! Wyatt has his own built-in protection system. Or something. Besides, I'll just add a protection spell around the house, if it would make you feel better."
Anxiety flared in Piper's dark eyes. "No, it won't! Paige, you know that protection spells aren't very reliable. I don't want some spell to backfire on Wyatt."
"Harry doesn't think they're unreliable. Neither do Olivia and the others," Paige said. "Besides, he thinks we might not know how to perform a protection spell, correctly."
"And he does?" Phoebe retorted. She was not a fan of any of the McNeills, save for Bruce.
Victor gave his youngest daughter a reassuring squeeze. "Don't worry, honey. Paige may be right about Harry. Don't forget, he's been practicing witchcraft longer than any of you."
Piper, however, did not seem assured. "I don't know . . ."
Heaving another exasperated sigh, Paige exclaimed, "Piper, c'mon! Don't worry. Harry knows what he's doing. He's coming by, today. To help me cast this protection spell. In fact," she glanced at the grandfather clock, "he should be here, any minute."
"If you say so," Piper said reluctantly. "By the way, do you have Uncle Russell's number?"
The doorbell rang. Paige rushed toward the front door. "That must be Harry." When she opened the door, she found the red-haired male witch, standing on the stoop. "Hey! I wondered when you were going to show up."
Harry flashed a disarming smile. "Sorry. I had overslept this morning." He entered the house. "So, where's Wyatt?"
"Sleeping in his crib, upstairs," Piper answered. She cast Harry a dubious look. "Now that you're here . . . I guess we can leave."
A touch of sarcasm tinged Harry's voice. "And it's nice to see you too, Piper." He nodded at the middle Charmed One. "Phoebe. Mr. Bennett." He shook Victor's hand. "It's been a while."
Victor smiled at the younger man. "Not that long. Just five months. How are Jack and Gwen? And your grandmother?"
"They're doing fine. Will you be coming by for brunch, tomorrow?"
"Uh . . ." Victor cast a anxious glance at his two daughters.
Paige impatiently answered for him. "We'll all be there. Okay guys, it's time to go. You don't want to get caught up in traffic."
A reluctant Piper added, "Yeah, I guess you're right. The funeral starts in less than three hours. And it'll take us at least an hour to get to San Jose. If the traffic's okay."
Paige almost told her sisters and stepfather to have fun . . . until she remembered that they were headed for a funeral. "Uh, have a safe trip. Bye." After the three Bennetts left the manor, she closed the door and sighed. "Finally. Alone. I never thought they would leave."
Harry slowly made his way toward her, a seductive smile stamped on his face. "I didn't realize that you wanted to be alone with me that badly." He slid his arms around Paige's waist.
She responded with a teasing smile. "Don't flatter yourself. You're not that . . ." A shot of pain stabbed the back of her mouth. "Ow!"
Harry frowned. "Something wrong?"
"No. It's nothing. I . . . It's just a molar." Paige winced from more pain. "Needs to be pulled out."
"Maybe you should go to a dentist. For an emergency."
Shaking her head, Paige replied, "Nah. It's okay. I have a dental appointment on Tuesday, anyway. I guess I can hold out for another three days."
Harry removed his arms from her waist. "Well . . . okay. If you say so. Meanwhile, let's get started on that protection spell. Shall we?"
The redheaded witch and the half-demon washed the last of the breakfast dishes, wiped them dry and placed them inside the kitchen cabinets. "Now that was a first-class breakfast," Olivia declared with a heartfelt sigh. "You make a better Eggs Florentine than either Mom or Bruce." She added surreptiously, "Don't tell them I said that."
Cole chuckled. "Don't worry. I won't say a word. And I'm glad that you enjoyed it."
"Hmmmm. You know, you should give up the law and become a chef. You've already been trained as one." Olivia shook her head. "How many demons can claim that they had studied at Le Cordon Bleu Academie in Paris?"
Dumping his rag on the nearby counter, Cole murmured, "You'd be surprised." Then he sighed. "So, what do you have planned for today?"
Olivia stared at him. "What's that?"
"Do you have any ideas?" Olivia asked. She followed Cole into the penthouse's living room. "For today?"
A desperate idea flashed in Cole's mind. "Well . . . the invitation to spend the weekend at Mark Giovanni's Santa Rosa ranch is still opened. Marbus and his wife were also invited."
Visions of a weekend with the Giovanni family filled Olivia with horror. "I don't think so." Olivia shot Cole an anxious look. "You did turn down his offer. Right?"
"Well I did consider saying yes," Cole replied sarcastically. "Until I contemplated two days in Pamela Giovanni's company. Of course, we could still head out . . ."
"No thanks. The idea of bearing witness to the ongoing Giovanni soap opera fills me with dread." A possibility occurred to her. "How about a drive down the coast? Go as far as Monterey? Or Santa Cruz?"
Strong arms encircled Olivia's waist, taking her by surprise. She could feel Cole's hard body pressing against hers. "Or why don't we simply stay here?" he murmured in one of her ears, causing her to shiver. "Spend the day together. In bed." He nipped at the delicate spot where Olivia's neck and shoulder met. A slight moan escaped her mouth. "What do you say?"
"Uh . . . are you suggesting . . . that we indulge in some kind of sexual marathon for . . .?" Olivia paused and pondered on what she had just said. "Wait a minute. Am I actually resisting this idea?"
Cole nipped her exposed flesh for the second time. "You tell me."
Olivia turned around to face her lover. "Hmmm, now that I think about it," she smiled seductively, "your idea sounds a lot better."
"Glad you think so," Cole murmured, before he lowered his mouth upon hers.
"Okay, do you have the Angelica root?" Harry asked.
Paige nodded. She held up the herb in question. The two witches stood inside Wyatt's nursery. Upon Harry's instruction, they had earlier placed sprigs of Mallow on every windowsill inside the manor. "It's too bad that mallow didn't work."
"Yeah, well I guess it just didn't work for you. Angelica root seems to be more your style."
A smile curved Paige's lips. "Ah yes. The herb that is under the guard of angels. That old whitelighter heritage coming back to haunt me. So, what do I do next?"
"Place the Angelica root in a small blue or white cloth bag and hang it outside the house," Harry instructed. "Near the door, if possible."
The Charmed One headed for the Solarium. "Let's see. There were some pieces of cloth inside that desk near the . . ." A familiar shot of pain filled the back of her mouth. Without thinking, Paige grounded her teeth, increasing the pain. "Aaaugh! My tooth!" She dropped the Angelica root from her hand.
Harry rushed forward to comfort her. "What's wrong? Are you hurt?"
"My tooof!" Paige mumbled. "It huuths!"
"Must be your molar, again." Harry's green eyes regarded her with concern. "Maybe we need to get you to a dentist."
Paige's eyes flew open. "Noo! My dooctah ez guw! Wihaat! Whud abooh . . ."
Heaving a sigh, Paige tried again. "My dooctah! Heh'z guw! Und Wihaat!"
"Did you say that your doctor hez . . . I mean . . . Your doctor isn't in the office, today." Harry said. "Is that it?" Paige nodded. He continued, "Okay, I'll take you to mine. As for Wyatt, we'll drop him off at my parents' . . ." Harry hesitated. "Oh wait! Shit! I forgot. They went to Tom Boucher's wedding in Palo Alto. Gran's also there. As for Bruce and Barbara . . ."
Paige screamed in pain.
Harry took a deep breath. "Right. Look, I'll go upstairs and get Wyatt and his things." He started toward the staircase. "Don't worry, we'll find someone to take care him." Then he raced upstairs, leaving Paige to continue moaning in pain.
A serene air almost permeated the atmosphere, inside Cole's living room. Almost. Serenity could have been achieved, if it were not for the passionate moans emitting from the couple locked in a horizontal embrace, on the living room's sofa.
With Olivia's body writhing underneath his, it took all of Cole's self-control not to rip off her remaining clothes, part her legs and sink right into her. Instead, he slowly stroke every inch of exposed flesh. Including the pale tan flesh that strained above Olivia's lacy white bra.
"Cole . . . please . . ." Olivia moaned between ragged breaths. ". . . now. I need . . . oh!" Cole had finally removed her bra. He gently squeezed one fleshy globe, before covering its coral pink tip with his lips, allowing it to become engorged. Another moan left her mouth. And when he gently bit into the nipple, she immediately arched her body.
At that moment, the doorbell rang. Olivia gasped with surprise and breathlessly asked, "Was that the doorbell?"
Cole reluctantly removed his mouth from her breast and murmured, "I didn't hear anything."
Again, the doorbell rang. Olivia sat up, causing Cole to moan with frustration. "That was the doorbell," she said. "Maybe you should answer it."
"Shit!" Cole muttered the oath, as he sat up and donned his T-shirt. Scowling, he marched toward the front door and peered through the peephole. Harry. It was Harry standing in the corridor outside, and holding . . . something. Cole sighed and opened the door. "Harry. What do you . . .?" A quick glance at the bundle in the male witch's arms told Cole that he was staring at Wyatt Halliwell. "What the hell?"
Harry dumped the baby in Cole's arms. "Here. I need you and Olivia to take care of Wyatt for a few hours. She's here, right?"
"Wha . . .?" Cole stared at the infant, who immediately began to wail. "What the hell?"
Olivia appeared in the doorway, wearing a bra . . . and her STANFORD U T-shirt. "What's going on?" she demanded.
Harry quickly explained that he and Paige were babysitting Wyatt, when the Charmed One developed a dental problem. "I'm taking her to my dentist, since hers isn't available. Mom, Dad and Gran are at that wedding. And Bruce and Barbara went to Santa Barbara for the weekend. So . . ."
To Cole's relief, Olivia took hold of the squealing Wyatt and began to rock him. "So, why didn't you summon Leo?"
"I don't know. I guess I just forgot about him!" Harry retorted, as he handed a large shoulder bag to Cole. "How often do I summon Leo? Besides," he grunted, as he placed a folded pram inside the penthouse, "I figure it would be hard to find him, considering the whole Elder gig. There."
Frowning, Olivia asked, "How did you know where to find me?"
"I tried your apartment, downstairs. I figured that if you weren't here, I'd take Wyatt to the dentist with us."
Cole retorted, "Why didn't you take him with you, anyway?"
"And have to deal with both Paige and him? Oh." Harry reached inside his jacket pocket for a slip of paper and handed it to Cole. "This has my cell phone number. And Piper's, in case you can't reach me. So, uh . . . I'll be back, later." He turned away.
"Wait!" Cole cried out. "You expect us to baby-sit . . . this . . . this . . . uh, kid?"
Harry flashed him a reassuring smile. "Don't worry. Olivia has done some babysitting before. Right Livy?" His older sister glared at him. "Anyway, I better get Paige to that dentist as soon as possible. Bye!" He rushed toward the elevator and entered, before Cole and Olivia could do or say anything further.
Back inside the penthouse, Wyatt's cries filled the living room. Cole glared at him. "Why is he crying?"
Olivia sighed, as she continued to rock the baby. "I don't know, Cole. Maybe he's having abandonment issues. I'm not a tele . . ." An empty bottle materialized in Wyatt's small hands. "Oh. I guess he's hungry."
Cole stared at the bag filled with Wyatt's belongings, in his hands. "You don't really expect me to make baby formula . . . or milk . . . or whatever, do you?"
"No, I don't. I'll do it." Olivia placed Piper's son in Cole's arms. "You can hold him, instead." The infant continued to cry. "Rock him up and down," she ordered. "Gently. And I'll take this." She removed the bag from Cole and headed toward the kitchen.
As Olivia had instructed, Cole began to rock Wyatt in his arms. At first, it seemed that his efforts might be in vain. The baby continued to cry, while squirming in Cole's arms. Another five minutes passed before the tears subsided. Wyatt's cries became gurgles, as he stared at the half-demon with wide, curious eyes.
"Hey there, partner," Cole murmured. He eased into a nearby chair. "You're finally getting used to me. Huh? You know, the way you're staring at me reminds me of your dad. Well, when we used to get along. God, how long ago was that?" Cole continued to rock the infant. "Did you know that I almost had a son, myself? Yep. He would have been at least a few months older than you. Of course, I was possessed at the time, when he was conceived. Sometimes, I . . . I wonder sometimes if . . ." The half-demon sighed. "Never mind. I guess it's best that we put the past behind us."
Wyatt gurgled once more and grabbed a fistful of Cole's T-shirt. Then he began chewing on said shirt. Cole smiled. "Getting hungry there, are we? Let's see if Olivia has that bottle of milk ready." He carried the infant into the kitchen, where Olivia hovered over the stove. "Is the milk ready? Wyatt is beginning to mistake my shirt for food."
Olivia rolled her eyes. "It's almost ready. She removed the bottle from a small saucepan. After a brief wait, she dabbed the bottle's content on her wrist. "Just to make sure that the milk isn't too hot."
Cole glanced down at Wyatt, who continued to chew on his T-shirt. "Is it ready now? I don't think I'll have a shirt left, within the next half hour."
With a sigh, Olivia walked over toward the pair. "Here you go, Wyatt," she said in a singsong voice. "Here's your widdle milk. Poor thing. You must be very hungry. Huh? Does Wyatt want his milk? Here we go! Choo-choo!" Cole stared at her in disbelief, as she plopped the bottle's nipple into Wyatt's hungry mouth. Then she looked up at Cole, before a horrified expression appeared on her face. "Oh Goddess! I sound like Phoebe whenever she uses that ridiculous baby voice! What's the matter with me?"
Cole's eyes watched, as Olivia rushed out of the kitchen in a fit of horror. Then he returned his gaze to Wyatt, who had also been staring at the redhead. Then the half-demon and the half-whitelighter's eyes regarded one another. Cole sighed. "Partner, women are a curious breed. Even after a century, I still don't understand them." He regarded the infant with a sympathetic smile. "And you're going to find out, for yourself. One day."
Wyatt's blue eyes blinked, as he continued to guzzle from the bottle.