Epilogue- Four Years Later
"Kyle, come on! We're leaving!" Kerry yelled up the stairs.
"Oh, that husband of mine…" Kerry muttered. Turning away from the staircase, she caught her daughter trying to sneak a cookie from the cupboard.
"Ryleigh!" The little girl immediately dropped the cookie and jumped off the counter.
"Ugh, sweetie, I told you! No cookies before we left for Grandma's!"
"Sorry, mommy!" Ryleigh said in her little voice. Hanging her head, she trotted over to her mother and hugged her around the leg. "I won't ever do it again!"
"That's what you said the last four times, baby," Kerry pointed out. "And you haven't stopped."
Kerry had a hard time staying mad at her daughter for long. She had always been a person who was easily angered and could hold grudges against someone for record periods of time. Then everything had changed when Ryleigh was born. She had felt like everything had just fallen into place when her little girl came into the world.
"Okay, let's go!" Kyle exclaimed as he came bounding down the stairs.
"Daddy!" Ryleigh wiggled out of Kerry's arms, ran over and jumped into Kyle's arms.
Kerry was so immensely relieved that Kyle had become father figure for Ryleigh. Just after Ryleigh had turned one, Kyle proposed to Kerry, and she said yes. He had officially adopted Ryleigh as his own child when she turned two. They got married a year and a half later. Kerry's grandfather had given her away at her wedding since her father couldn't, but she was so happy Jim had agreed to it. Bridget was the maid of honor, Rory was the best man, and Ryleigh was the ring bearer. It was perfect.
"Okay, um, meet me in the car. I've just got to grab my bag and the food," Kerry said.
"Alright. Let's go, Ryleigh!" Kyle led Ryleigh out the front door.
Walking through the living room on the way to the kitchen, Kerry glanced at all the pictures hanging on the walls and standing on tables and the fireplace mantle. They were from all different stages of her life, Kyle's life, and Ryleigh's life.
"Where'd that damn bag get to… Oh, there it is!" Kerry picked up her purse from the island in the kitchen and opened the fridge to get the food to bring to her mother's barbeque.
Hearing a loud honking from outside, Kerry hurriedly shut the fridge door and ran out to the car.
"You know, it really wasn't necessary for you to honk," Kerry said as she climbed into the passenger's seat. "I was coming."
"You were the one who was hurrying me out of the house in the first place," Kyle retorted as he backed the car out of the driveway.
When they pulled up in front of Kate Hennessy's house forty-five minutes later, they were greeted by a flurry of activity. The front door opened and Kate was standing in the doorway, waving to her daughter and son-in-law.
"Grandma!" Ryleigh exclaimed from the backseat. "Mommy! Undo my seatbelt!"
"Be polite, Ryleigh," Kerry warned as she opened the back door and unbuckled her daughter from her car seat.
"Okay. Sorry," Ryleigh said, hopping down from the car and rushing up the walkway and into the arms of her grandmother.
"Hi, mom!" Kerry said as she and Kyle followed their daughter up the walkway.
"How are you, honey?" Kate asked as she embraced her youngest daughter.
"I'm fine. You?"
"A little tired, but that just comes with getting older."
Kerry patted her mother's shoulder as she walked past her and into her childhood home. Rory was sprawled out on the couch in front of the TV, flicking through the channels. He was now in his senior year in high school, and he was taller than Bridget.
"You lazy ass. Get up!" Kerry commanded, smacking the back of her little brother's head as she passed him.
"Ouch! What was that for?" Rory cried, rubbing the back of his head.
"Oh, it was just for old time's sake."
Kerry looked around at the living room where she had spent her entire childhood. It still pretty much looked the same, except for the pictures. They had changed. There was one of Kerry and Kyle at their wedding, and Bridget at her own wedding. Bridget married a man named Nick Jones, whom she met at Princeton. Kerry chuckled to herself as she thought of Bridget's married name, had she changed it.
"Bridget Jones… haha…" Kerry placed the Tupperware bowl on the counter and turned around when she heard another car pull up in the driveway. Walking back out the front door, Kerry recognized her elder sister's car as it came to a stop just behind hers.
Nick came out of the driver's seat and went around to open the passenger's door for Bridget. Since Kerry had last seen her sister, she had gotten even more pregnant. She looked like she was about to burst.
Kerry folded her arms across her chest and leaned against the doorframe.
"Hey Bridget! Who's the house now?" she yelled to her sister.
"Oh, shut up!" Bridget yelled back.
"Hi, sweetie!" Kate said as Bridget slowly made her way up the driveway. "How are you holding up?" she asked, hugging her eldest daughter.
"I'm good. My back is just killing me!" Bridget replied.
"Well, come one. Let's get you inside and sitting down," Kate suggested.
"Hey, what about me? Does little sister get a hug?" Kerry asked as Bridget walked by.
"Of course she does!" Bridget did the best she could at bending down and trying to give her baby sister a hug. "Okay, this won't work. Come over to my side and give me a hug from there!"
After everyone said their hellos and who are yous, Kyle and Nick started cooking the food.
"When'll Cj be here, mom?" Kerry asked.
"He said he'd be here around two, so he should be here soon," Kate said, looking at the clock.
"And where's Grandpa?" Bridget asked, looking around.
"He's still asleep."
"Well, that's a shock," Kerry said sarcastically.
"So, Kerry, how's night school going?" Kate asked, sitting down next across from her daughters. Since Kerry had to raise Ryleigh, she had been forced to have to go to night classes to complete college. When Ryleigh was a little older, she planned to go back to college and get her Master's degree.
"It's going good. I've got this paper due in two days and I've barely scratched the surface, so I've got to get done. Other than that, yeah, it's good."
A loud honking was heard from outside as Cj pulled up in his doorless green '98 Jeep. He and his fiancé, Cassandra, stepped out of it and came inside.
"Hey, Cj! Hi, Cassie!" everyone said.
"Hey, peoples," Cj replied as he closed the door behind them.
No one could be mad at him anymore. He finally got his life together and is getting married in a few months. That's more than anyone ever thought would happen for hi.
Now, with everyone she could possibly want around her in one house, together, Kerry felt complete. Though some of them could get unbearably annoying at times, they were family, and that was all Kerry needed.
Sorry if the end was kinda mushy. I had to finish the last bit up real quick cause my mom's gonna kill me if I don't go to bed soon. I don't know why I named the baby Ryleigh. I just like that name and the way it's spelled. I hope you enjoyed reading my story! It would be awesome if I could get this great a response for my other stories. Please R & R!!