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Synopsis: Marcus and Shari, Kate and Dave (Holly), Lisa and Quinn, Jack and Cassie, Rachel and Cole, Stephen and Meghan, Sara and Adam, and Tom (of course) are ready for another Fourth of July celebration – what mischief does this family have in store? Takes place after The Rescuer.

Disclaimer: I don't own any of these gorgeous and wonderful characters, but Dee Henderson does.

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Chapter One

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Jack was late. He had three more stops to make and he was already behind schedule. His brother Stephen had volunteered him to be the chauffer for the family, and what with Marcus and Shari flying in from Virginia, Tom flying in from his pediatrician practice in Houston and Lisa and Quinn flying in from Washington DC, he was quite the busy man. Cassie was going to kill him for being late to pick her up. He unconsciously straightened the tie he was wearing – the tie she had picked out for him two years ago – the first tie she had ever bought him. He loved it – and the fact that Jennifer had as well when she had seen it. He closed his eyes as fatigue and emotion swamped him. I sure do miss you, Jen,he thought. Jack shook his head of the sudden sadness and pushed the thought away while he waited for Marcus and Shari's flight to come in.

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Stephen walked around the yard of his farmhouse in Silverton. He grinned as he looked from his wife Meghan settling out the blankets for a picnic to the small lamb that was curled up beside her. He was content to sip his lemonade and wait for the rest of the O'Malley clan to show up. He walked forward towards Meghan, knelt and settled a comforting hand on her shoulder.

"Hello, lady," he murmured, but not before Meghan gave a little start at the contact. Hearing his voice she relaxed as her seeing-eye dog, Blackie, moved forward to rub his head against Stephen's leg. Meghan stopped what she was doing to lean back against him.

"Stephen, you should have told me it was you," she gently chided, getting comfortable against his chest and shoulder.

He immediately felt guilty. During a stormy night seven years ago, Meghan had been in a car accident and had lost her sight. Two years ago she had been kidnapped by someone she had known, and had always been a bit more wary of people sneaking up behind her if she didn't know for sure who it was.

"Sorry," Stephen whispered, rubbing her shoulder soothingly, relaxing as well. He wrapped his other arm around her waist as he buried his face in her hair.

"It's okay," Meghan replied. She straightened when she heard a car. "I think someone's coming."

Stephen didn't bother to look up as he kissed Meghan's neck. "Mmhm."

Meghan giggled and gently shoved him. "Go."

Stephen reluctantly leaned back and let her go, then got up. "Want to come with me?" he asked as he looked down their long driveway just in time to see a large van pull in followed by two cars. Looks like Jack had made it after all. Meghan smiled up to where she thought he would be and held up a hand hand. Stephen caught her hand easily in his and managed to lift her up just as easily. She slid her hand in the crook of his elbow and they started to head towards the group, leaving Blackie to chase butterflies around the lake.

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The cars unloaded first. Rachel and Cole got out of one and Kate, Dave and Holly got out of the other one.

Meghan was the first to feel Holly's embrace. "Megge!" the small child held out her arms for Meghan and she captured the small girl in her arms with a laugh.

"Hello, darling!" She gently swung her around as Holly sucked her thumb with contentment.

Kate grinned over at Meghan. "She was saying 'Megge' all the way here, Meg."

Meghan laughed. "I thought she'd be calling for Rae."

"You're the one who spoils her whenever she's here," Rachel protested with a twinkle in her eye, her arm around her husband Cole.

Before either Stephen or Meghan could defend themselves, the van started to unload with much laughter.

Jack came around the front of the vehicle to hold the door open for Cassie while Marcus slid the sliding door open with a grunt. He stepped out and held out his hand for his wife Shari to accept, and once they were out, Tom slipped from the next row and jumped from the vehicle. Quinn quickly followed and helped his wife Lisa out of the van.

Stephen nodded to his brothers and slid his arms around his sister Kate, giving her a firm hug. "Missed you something fierce," he whispered, trying to give a light smile. It had not gone unnoticed that Tom had come alone.

Kate squeezed back and blinked back tears. "I missed you too."

Stephen turned to Rachel and opened his arms. Without a word, Rachel accepted his hug, the teasing mood suddenly turned serious. Soon Jack and Marcus and Lisa had joined them, hugging, laughing, and crying.

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A/N: So short, sorry. Not really in depth either. I'll try harder.