A/N: After several weeks of writer's block regarding this story and deliberating whether to continue or not, I have finally decided NOT to continue this story. I don't know how you all feel about that, but I think if I continue it'll be complete shite and will be forced, so I'd rather not do that. Hope you enjoyed what I had written, though! We can just call it a very extended Oneshot.

Below is just a little excerpt that I had finished before all inspiration left me for this story. Cheers to those who have read and reviewed! xx IFHD

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Chapter 8: MacManus to MacManus

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"Miracle"

By: Paramore

I've gone for too long living like I'm not alive
So I'm going to start over tonight
Beginning with you and I
When this memory fades
I'm gonna make sure it's replaced
With chances taken
Hope embraced
and have I told you?

I'm not going
cause I've been waiting for a miracle
And I'm not leaving
I won't let you
Let you give up on a miracle
When it might save you

We've learned to run from
Anything uncomfortable
We've tied our pain below and no one ever has to know

That inside we're broken
I try to patch things up again
To calm my tears and kill these fears
But have I told you, have I?

It's not faith if, if you use your eyes
Oh why
We'll get it right this time (this time)
Let's leave this all behind
Oh why
We'll get it right this time
It's not faith if you're using your eyes
Oh why

I've gone for too long living like I'm not alive
So I'm going to start over tonight
Beginning with you and

I don't want to run from anything uncomfortable
I just want, no
I just need this pain to end right here

Yeah, it might save you
Oh, it might save you

It's not faith if, if you use your eyes
If you use your eyes
If you use your eyes

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"And shepherds we shall be, for thee, my Lord, for thee…"

Piercing the silence around them, they began the prayer in unison; MacManus to MacManus, MacManus to God. With eyes lightly closed and heads bowed in an exhibition of reverence, each word automatically fell from their lips as though guided by invisible, kindred spirits. This was their prayer, the emanation of their beings - the simple words that bound them as one.

Murphy's eyes fluttered open when he noticed that the voice of the MacManus beside him began to falter. Seeing his wrinkled brow, a manifestation of utter frustration, Murphy outstretched a hand to the side of his arm in simultaneous question and comfort. With a side frown, he inquired, "Hey, what's wrong?"

Now his eyes were wide open, ablaze with heightened emotions, as tears of upset brimmed upon its sides. "I forgot the words!"

A mirthful gaze passed through Murphy's brown orbs but was quick to disappear. "Come here, Liam." Easily scooping the lithe MacManus into his arms and upon his lap, he gently offered, "Now, how about ye just repeat after me?"

Through Liam's repetitive nods, they continued the prayer as father and son, a MacManus echoing the other. Though, Murphy could only hear Liam's voice, fumbling through syllables, carefully mouthing the Latin at the finish. Fingers to forehead, to chest, to left shoulder and the right. My son. He held onto him more tightly, lovingly…desperately.My life.

With a cry of sheer pride as a result of successfully completing the prayer, Liam ensued to jump from his father's arms and bury himself underneath the wrinkled covers of his bed in the manner of a groundhog. Gleefully laughing, he tucked the Batman-printed blankets around his tiny body as he rolled, now resembling a mini-cinnamon bun. Peeking his head in between the partial opening, he shot his father a crooked grin. "Hey Da, can I ask ye somethin'?"

Appreciative of his son's curiosity, Murphy replied as he ruffled Liam's mussed, light-brown hair, "Sure, kid. Fire away."

"Uncle Con told me that he's five minutes older than ye because he climbed outta Grandma's belly first," with a wrinkled expression plastered upon his countenance, Liam continued with an animated voice, "He said that he was much stronger than ye and pushed ye outta the way! Is it true?"

Connor, ye mother… The outright seriousness that suddenly appeared on Murphy's visage slightly took Liam aback. When Murphy didn't respond after a few moments of complete silence, Liam tilted his head curiously to the side as he quietly watched his father literally grind his teeth in front of him.

Sternly placing his hands upon Liam's shoulder, Murphy attempted as best as he could to control his upset. Through tight lips, he declared with such conviction, "Yer Uncle Con isn't tellin' the truth, Liam. The truth is that I am five minutes older than he is and that I pushed him outta the way ta get outta Grandma's belly first. Will ye promise ta remember this forever and ever?"

Liam nodded obediently at the sight of his father's raised brow, hair flapping upon his forehead. "I will, Da." He then paused thoughtfully, pursing his lips in remembrance. "Oh! I forgot. I heard him say that he had a bigger cock, too." Another wrinkled expression appeared on his face, this time of utter confusion. "…What's a cock?"

CONNOR! YE FUCKIN'… To save both Liam's innocence as well as some of his dignity accordingly, he hurriedly blurted, "A cock is a male chicken!"

"Ye and Uncle Con take care o' chickens?"

"Aye!"

"Where are they?"

"On a farm!"

"But Da, there aren't any farms around…"

Quickly kissing his son upon the forehead, Murphy stood and cried evasively, "It's yer bedtime! That means ye gotta go ta sleep!" A bit flustered by his innocent questions, and due to the complete annoyance that he felt towards Connor, Murphy let out a restrained noise of frustration, stomping heavily towards the doorway. As the plans for revenge upon his twin began to sift through his mind, the simple sound of Liam's softly-spoken words halted him in his tracks:

"I love you, Da."

At this sincere declaration, the surge of emotions that ensued to engulf Murphy resembled that of a tempest consuming the shoreline in its entire unbridled wrath. It was not the first time that his son had said this statement before, no. But there was just something in his voice, in his wholehearted expression, that hit Murphy to the very core of his being, that uncaged the emotions locked away, buried, deep in his heart. Fighting the tears that began to form in his eyes, he replied weakly, "I love you too, son. Sweet dreams."