Five and a half years later…
Evan sat patiently at a table by himself on the patio of Bravo, a restaurant in downtown New York City. He had been there over fifteen minutes when he finally saw the man he was waiting for walk into the restaurant in a t-shirt, pair of dark blue jeans and sunglasses.
"Cap, you seriously couldn't have dressed any nicer?" Evan asked as Cappie approached the table.
"Ev, this is the way I always dress," Cappie replied as he took his sunglasses off. "I believe in being comfortable and relaxed at all times."
"Cap, you're part owner of a multi-million dollar restaurant chain," said Evan. "I expect someone in that position to be walking around in a suit and tie at all times."
"Too bad I only own like one suit," said Cappie with a laugh.
"I thought you were at least going to cut your hair," Evan groaned as he watched Cappie with his patent long disheveled hair sit in the seat across from him.
Cappie just rolled his eyes at Evan. "Since when did you become my mother?" he asked.
"Since The Beaver has gone national and you hired me to be the company's global business manager," said Evan as he loosened the tie around his neck a little. "It's my job to look out for the brand and uphold our reputation."
"And you're doing a fine job," said Cappie with a smirk. "But always remember one thing; I'm still above you on the ladder. So if I want to wear jeans, I'll wear jeans."
"Yes, I'm pretty sure that's the hundredth time this month you have reminded me of that," said Evan grabbing some papers out of his briefcase and putting them on the table.
"Relax Ev," said Cappie noticing Evan was getting a little too "business" on him at the moment. "This lunch isn't about all business stuff."
"Wait, what?" Evan asked as he stopped shuffling through the papers.
"Just what I said," said Cappie as he reached over and took the stack of papers away from Evan. "I already met with the investors yesterday for the new spot downtown. They're all set up so we can just enjoy this lunch as friends."
"You met with them without me?" Evan asked. "I told you I could have been here yesterday if you needed me to. I could have gotten an earlier flight."
"It's not a big deal, we didn't need you," said Cappie. "Beaver and I met with them on our own and he took the first flight back to Chicago this morning. Besides, you needed to be at home for as long as possible anyway. I know how much Rebecca hates when you travel for long periods of time with the kids around now. So I promised her you would only be away a couple of days."
"If you already met with the investors then why am I here?" Evan asked.
"Well your first duty is to stop thinking so much about work and have lunch with an old friend," said Cappie as he smiled at Evan. "And then we'll head over to the location and I need you here to run the financials for the equipment and everything we will need."
Evan just gave Cappie a strange look as he sat back in his seat.
"Come on Ev, even you have to admit that over the past three years you and I have become less of friends when we started this business relationship," said Cappie.
"That's not true," said Evan. "I still consider you one of my best friends."
"And I feel the same way," Cappie added. "But when is the last time we've sat down and just talked about life and had a man to man conversation that didn't include something about the business?"
Evan thought about Cappie's question for a second. "I guess it has been a while," he finally responded.
"Good, so put this stuff away," said Cappie as he handed Evan's papers back to him. "And order a beer."
"Did I hear you say you wanted to order a beer?" asked a waitress near their table.
"Yes, two please," said Cappie.
"Sure thing," the waitress replied as she walked away.
"Now," said Cappie turning back to Evan. "How are Larry, Curly and Moe?"
Evan rolled his eyes at Cappie. "You know their names are Liam, Owen and Gavin."
"Oh yes, my bad," said Cappie with a smirk. "Seriously though, how are they?"
"They're fine," Evan replied. "Liam and Gavin actually learned how to climb out of their cribs last night so it looks like Rebecca and I need to start looking into other options."
"Case and I got Cadence her first bed when she was around two," said Cappie. "It's certainly about that time for your three."
"And yet another expense that I have to buy three of because we had triplets," said Evan with a sigh.
"I still don't know how you guys do it," said Cappie. "I'm just glad my little soldiers march just fine and didn't have to go through all those fertility treatments you guys went through."
"I'm not sure you're the one to be talking here," said Evan with a smirk. "I don't know many people who have two 'oops' babies in their lives. Maybe your soldiers march a little too good."
Cappie let out a small laugh as the waitress set the beers in front of them. "I guess you do have a point there buddy," he said as he took a drink. "Casey and I weren't planning on having anymore after everything she went through with Caleb but God had other plans I guess."
"How's Cadence taking to the new baby?" Evan asked. "I know you guys had some jealously problems with her when Caleb with born."
"It makes a big difference when they are older that's for sure," said Cappie taking another drink. "She's more helpful with Caitlyn than anything."
"And how about Caleb?" Evan asked.
"He's quite the little man for being just five years old," said Cappie with a smile. "Casey says as long as I'm home he does fine but he can throw a few temper tantrums on her when I'm away."
"That's why Rebecca and I decided to hire a nanny," said Evan. "I know everyone thought it was wrong but sometimes you just need a break from your kids. I'm sure you know what I mean."
"Amen bro," said Cappie as he clanked his glass against Evan's. "There's no doubt we love our kids but it's just nice to get away once in a while."
The two sat back and took in some of the fresh air.
"Thanks Cap," Evan said breaking the silence. "I really did need this."
"I know you did," said Cappie with a smile.
Cadence walked into the house and slammed her backpack down on the kitchen table.
"Bad day at school?" Casey asked as she looked up from washing some vegetables in the sink.
"Marissa said her parents have plans tonight so I can't spend the night at her house," said Cadence. "Can she stay here?"
"She stayed here with us last weekend," Casey replied as she dried her hands and sat at the table with Cadence. "I know she's your best friend but sometimes you guys need a little time apart."
"You see Aunt Ashleigh almost every day and she's your best friend," Cadence rebutted.
"Yes but that is different," said Casey. "Ashleigh and I are doing work for the restaurants for dad and Beaver."
"When is dad going to be home?" Cadence asked. "He will let Marissa come over."
"Your father won't be home until tomorrow," said Casey. "And there is no use asking him because he will just agree with me."
"Well this weekend is going to be so boring then," Cadence whined.
"That's not true," said Casey as she got up and went back to the sink. "We are going over to grandma and grandpa's tonight for dinner. Uncle Rusty and Jordan are in town so you'll get to see them."
"Really? I haven't seen them in a long time," said Cadence as a small smile came over her face.
"Why don't you take your backpack upstairs and change out of your school clothes," said Casey. "But please be quiet as Caitlyn is taking her nap."
"OK," said Cadence as she picked up her backpack and headed upstairs.
Casey turned and looked at the clock and realized it was about time for Caleb to get off the bus. So she dried her hands once again and sat outside on the porch steps waiting for him like she usually does. A few minutes later his bus pulled up and he excitedly jumped off and ran up the driveway.
"HI MOM!" he yelled as he gave her a hug.
"Hi sweetheart, how was your day at school?" Casey asked as she hugged him back.
"It was good," Caleb replied. "Jimmy puked all over his desk."
Casey couldn't help but laugh a little as she let go of him. "Why is Jimmy puking a good part of your day?" she asked.
"Because it was cool to see," said Caleb as the two of them climbed the steps and went into the house.
Casey helped Caleb take his backpack off and set it on the steps for the next time she goes upstairs.
"I've got some carrots I just got done washing in the sink," said Casey as the two of them walked into the kitchen. "Would you like some with ranch dressing for a snack?"
"Yummy!" said Caleb as he got up in his seat at the kitchen table.
"Were Matthew and Maddison at school today?" Casey asked as she poured some dressing into a cup for Caleb.
"Yup," Caleb replied. "I sat next to Matt at lunch. We told Maddie she couldn't sit with us though."
"Why couldn't she sit with you two?" Casey asked.
"Because she has cooties mommy," said Caleb. "All girls have cooties."
"Now that is not very nice," said Casey as she set the plate in front of Caleb and sat down next to him. "Maddison is a very nice girl and she is your friend. You shouldn't be mean to her like that."
"Yeah, she was crying," said Caleb with a somber look on his face.
"I remember just a year ago Maddison was your girlfriend," said Casey as she took a carrot off his plate and bit into it. "You two would play house and run around holding hands. You even said you wanted to marry her."
"Mommy, I'm only five," said Caleb as he held up his small five fingers to her. "I can't get married until I'm at least ten."
Casey laughed. "Try not until you're in your twenties," she said. "But you really should apologize to Maddison the next time you see her OK?" she said in a more serious voice.
"OK mommy," said Caleb as he picked up a carrot and dipped it in the dressing.
"That's my boy," said Casey as she stood up and rubbed her hand on the top of Caleb's long shaggy hair that was just like his fathers, only much lighter in color.
Seconds later Cadence came prancing down the steps in a skirt and t-shirt. She had taken the ponytail out of her brunette hair and put a headband in around the curls that flowed down to the middle of her back.
"You look very nice," said Casey.
"Thanks," said Cadence as she sat down on the couch and turned on the television. "I wanted to look pretty for grandma and grandpa and Uncle Rusty and Aunt Jordan."
Just then the phone rang and it didn't take long for Cadence to jump off the couch and run over to get it. She loved talking on the phone as of recent.
"Hello," she said answering.
"Who is this?" said Cappie on the other end playfully.
"Dad, it's me, Cadence," she replied.
"I know who you are silly," said Cappie. "What are you doing?"
"Just got home from school," Cadence replied. "Caleb is having a snack, Caitlyn is sleeping and mom is doing whatever stuff she does in the kitchen."
"Well can I talk to your mom?" Cappie asked.
"One second, can I ask you a question first," said Cadence.
"Sure," Cappie replied. "What's up?"
"Can I get a cell phone?" Cadence asked.
"Cadence, we've been through this before," said Cappie with a sigh. "You are too young to have a cell phone."
"Well Marissa said her parents are getting her one for Christmas," said Cadence. "Why can she have one and not me?"
"If Marissa jumped off a bridge would you do it too?" Cappie rebutted.
"Daaaaad," Cadence whined. "You always ask me that question and you know the answer is no. I don't know why you keep bringing it up."
"I'm bringing it up to show you that you don't have to do whatever Marissa does in this life," said Cappie.
"Pretty please dad?" Cadence continued to whine. "I'll love you forever."
Still to this day hearing any of his kids tell him they love him brings butterflies to Cappie's stomach. "You're mom and I will talk about it," he finally replied. "But I'm not promising anything."
"Thanks dad! You're the best!" said Cadence as she passed the phone quickly off to Casey while she was ahead and ran back into the living room.
"She's not giving up on that dang cell phone is she?" Casey asked as she got onto the phone.
"It's alright, I'm already planning on buying her a toy cell phone for Christmas and having her unwrap it," said Cappie in a devious voice.
"Oooo, I like the way you think Mr. Cappington," said Casey with a laugh.
"Are you holding the house down alright?" Cappie asked.
"Of course," Casey replied. "But I miss you."
"I miss you too babe," said Cappie. "I promise this will be my last business trip for a while."
"You always say that," said Casey half jokingly. "But with twenty-five restaurants all over the states there is bound for something to go wrong somewhere that you need to run to and fix."
"Maybe, but next time I'll just send Beave or Evan to do it," said Cappie.
"So you'll be home tomorrow evening?" Casey asked.
"That's the plan," Cappie replied. "I'll give you a call when I land and you can come and get me."
"CALEB STOP CHANGING THE CHANNEL!" Cadence yelled cutting Casey off.
"Guess I should go play referee," said Casey. "Love you."
"Love you too," Cappie replied.
"Bye," said Cappie as he hung up the phone.
"Sir, can I help you?" the woman asked in front of him.
"Yes, I'm here to check in for my flight to Chicago," Cappie replied handing her his ID.
"Ah yes Mr. Cappington, I have you listed on the flight leaving at five-thirty this evening," she stated after checking in the computer.
"That's exactly right," said Cappie with a smile as he took his ticket from her.
Casey stood in her parents' kitchen rocking Caitlyn back and forth as she watched her mom pull the ham out of the oven.
"Are the Thompson's still joining us?" Mrs. Cartwright asked.
"As far as I know they are," said Casey. "I thought Rusty and Jordan were going to be here by now too."
"Russ called a little bit ago, they are running late," Mrs. Cartwright replied. "I guess they had to stop for a few more restroom breaks then they planned."
Just then the doorbell rang.
"I'll get it," said Casey as she walked to the door.
"Hi Aunt Casey!" exclaimed Maddison as she opened the door.
"Hi sweetheart," said Casey as she stepped aside and let them in.
"Can I hold the baby?" Maddison asked eagerly.
"Maddie, we just got here," said Ashleigh as he took her hand. "Maybe later."
"Actually I could use a little break," said Casey with a smile. "Why don't you come in the living room and sit in one of the chairs."
"Yay!" Maddison exclaimed as she ran into the living room.
"My dad is outside with Caleb and Cadence if you want to take Matt out to join them," said Casey.
"Sounds great," said Beaver as he took Matthew's hand and headed outside.
Casey carefully set Caitlyn in Maddison's arms and sat on the couch next to her.
"Have I ever mentioned how stressful it is having twins?" Ashleigh sighed as she plopped down in one of the living room chairs.
"A few times," said Casey with a smirk.
"It took us like a half an hour just to get ready to come here tonight," said Ashleigh. "A freaking half an hour!"
"I guess it could be worse," said Casey. "You could have had triplets."
"Yeah, thank god for that," said Ashleigh with a small laugh.
"It was Matt that had to go to the bathroom three times, not me," Maddison piped in. "I told him he shouldn't have drank a lot of juice."
"I know dear," said Ashleigh with a deep breath.
"My arm is getting tired; can I go out and play?" Maddison asked.
"Sure," Casey replied as she took Caitlyn from her and watched Maddison run outside.
"All Matt could talk about this afternoon was how much some kind named Jimmy vomited all over the classroom," said Ashleigh as she leaned back in her chair.
"Yeah, same with Caleb," said Casey with a small laugh. "He also told me that they didn't let Maddie sit with them at lunch again. Did she say anything to you about that?"
"She did," said Ashleigh with a sigh. "I just don't know what to do. She's been so attached to Matt and even Caleb for so long that hanging out with the boys is what she does. She hasn't mentioned one girl from school. I'm scared she has no friends."
"That can't be true," Casey reassured her. "Maddie is a very cute and outgoing girl. I'm sure she has a couple of girls that she talks to in the class."
"The poor girl said she sat alone at lunch when Matt and Caleb wouldn't let her sit with them," said Ashleigh. "I feel like I've failed as a mother. I've tried so hard to make her like a little mini-me that I'm not sure if I've allowed her to grow into being her own person."
"Ash, she's only five years old," said Casey. "Don't freak out too much about this. She'll make some friends. I also told Caleb what he did wasn't nice and that he should apologize to her. Not sure if he'll remember to do it but I'll remind him if needed."
"Thanks Case," said Ashleigh. "And maybe you could have Cadence talk to her too? It may be better if a younger girl kind of talks to her about making friends and things."
"I'm sure she'll be happy to do that," said Casey. "Maddie has always been like a little sister to Cadence until Caitlyn here came along."
There was a brief pause as Casey set Caitlyn down on the couch next to her and turned to Ashleigh.
"So, everything still going OK with you and Beave?" Casey asked.
When the twins were around two years old Beaver and Ashleigh hit a rough spot in their relationship. The stress of raising two kids who were literally in their terrible-twos was a little too much for each of them. They began fighting more and one large fight eventually resulted in Beaver staying over at the Cappington house for a few days to let things calm down. Ever since they have been trying really hard to work on their relationship and making time for each other which was something they weren't doing when the kids were younger.
"It actually couldn't be better," said Ashleigh with a smile. "We had a date night earlier in the week and Beave took me on a dinner cruise. We ate and watched the sunset on the lake and it was really nice."
"I'm so glad to hear that," said Casey.
"And I'm pretty sure we've come to an agreement about something," added Ashleigh.
"What's that?" Casey asked.
"No more kids," said Ashleigh with a small laugh.
"Well just be sure to take the right precautions if that's the case," said Casey. "You've seen what can happen if you don't," she smiled as she leaned over and kissed Caitlyn on the cheek.
"Yeah but you and Cap I think were always meant to have another kid," said Ashleigh. "You just didn't want to with all the health things you went through with Caleb. Beaver and I have come to the realization that another kid may just ruin what we've worked so hard to keep together. We're as happy as could be right where we are."
Casey was about to speak when the doorbell rang again.
"I'll get it," said Ashleigh as she stood up.
"Hey Ash!" said Rusty as she answered the door.
"Hey you two!" said Ashleigh as she gave Rusty and Jordan hugs.
"There's my newlyweds," said Casey as the two of them walked into the living room.
"Case, we've been married for like four years now," said Rusty with a laugh as he hugged Casey. "You can stop calling us that."
"Well you're the last people I know who have gotten married so you'll always be the newlyweds to me," said Casey as she backed away from Rusty.
"Oh my Jordan, you look radiant!" said Casey as she gave her a hug.
"Thanks sis," said Jordan as she backed away.
"And how is our soon to be bundle of joy?" Casey asked as she rubbed Jordan's stomach.
"Making me go to the bathroom way too much," said Jordan with a laugh.
"Yeah, I swear we had to stop every fifteen miles on the way here so she could pee," said Rusty as he picked Caitlyn up off the couch. "I don't know how she even has any fluid left in her."
"Oh be nice," said Ashleigh as she playfully hit Rusty on the arm. "It's not easy being pregnant."
"I've got a bunch of newborn baby clothes that Caitlyn doesn't fit into anymore," said Casey. "Remind me to give them to you before you guys head home."
"Thanks Case," said Jordan.
"Have you guys thought about any names yet?" Ashleigh asked.
"We've got a couple," said Rusty as he looked at Jordan and they smiled at each other.
"Tell me, tell me!" said Casey.
"I don't know, do we really want to tell?" Jordan asked as she looked at Rusty.
"We should be mean and make them wait like they did to us with all their kids," said Rusty.
"That's not true! I told you Caitlyn's name before she was born!" said Casey.
"Yeah, like three days before you went into labor," said Jordan with a laugh.
"Plleeeeaase," whined Ashleigh. "We really want to know."
"OK, if you must know," said Rusty with a deep breath. "The three we've narrowed it down to are Isabella, Zoey and Savannah."
"Awww, I like all of those," said Casey.
"So do we," said Jordan nodding her head. "That's the problem. I'm not sure if we'll be able to decide."
"Maybe you guys should just wait until she's born," said Casey. "Maybe you'll take one look at her and know what one of the names would fit best."
"Good idea sis," said Rusty. "But, uh, I think you should take Caitlyn back. She smells a little funky."
"Don't you want to change her and get some practice?" Casey asked as she took the baby from Rusty.
"I'll take you up on that offer another time," said Rusty with a wink and a smile as he watched Casey roll her eyes and take the baby upstairs.
After dinner everyone gathered in the living room to watch a Charlie Brown Halloween movie and munch on some popcorn. Beaver and Rusty weren't too interested in the movie and eventually found themselves sitting outside on the back deck, each sipping a beer.
"So Spitter is going to be a daddy," said Beaver as he turned to look at Rusty. "It's still hard for me to believe."
"I feel the same way about you bro," said Rusty as he took a sip or his beer. "You're certainly not the same Beaver I knew while living at Kappa Tau."
"I hope that's not a bad thing," said Beaver with a concerned look.
"No, not at all," Rusty replied. "I like this Beaver too. I guess it's just weird to see how much we've all grown up over the years."
"Are you still working with Dale?" Beaver asked.
"Sure am," Rusty replied. "With all the competition Dale and I had in school, I thought it would be hard for us to really work together but we actually make a pretty good team."
"Anything new going on with him?" Beaver asked.
"Did I tell you he got married a few months ago?" Rusty asked.
"No, I don't believe you did," said Beaver. "Honestly I'm a little shocked that he actually found someone to marry him."
"Hey now, Dale may be a little weird and nerdy but deep down he is a really nice guy," said Rusty. "He met Natalie about a year ago and—"
"Wow, they got married quickly," interrupted Beaver.
"Yeah, it was just a courthouse ceremony," said Rusty. "They didn't see any reason to wait."
"Do you like his wife?" Beaver asked.
"Of course, I have to work with her just about every day too," Rusty replied.
"Oh, she works at the same company as you two?" Beaver asked.
"Yup," Rusty replied. "She's very nice and kind of nerdy just like Dale. So they're perfect for each other."
"Are you making decent money at your job?" Beaver asked. "Because you know you can always come work for me if you need some more cash flow."
"I'm making plenty of money," said Rusty with a smile. "Plus Jordan booked a lot of weddings this past summer which has helped us buy quite a bit of the things we need for the baby."
"I always forget she's a photographer," said Beaver. "Ash and I should have her take some pictures of the twins sometime."
"She's great at what she does," said Rusty. "I'm sure she would be happy to do it."
There was a brief pause as both men took drinks of their beers.
"So have you been by the house lately?" Beaver asked.
"I was there just last week actually," Rusty replied. "The new president this year is a guy named Dave but they call him Cornhole."
"Why is that?" Beaver asked.
"I guess when he was a freshman they had a cornhole tournament with the Lambda Sigs and Omega Chis and he was the star," Rusty replied. "So he's had the name ever since."
"Are they doing alright financially?" Beaver asked. "I sent over a check at the beginning of the year as a donation to the party fund but I haven't heard from anyone since."
"I'm sure they are fine and your contribution was very much appreciated," said Rusty with a laugh. "But ever since the entire Greek system was saved the University is putting more money into the houses. They were even able to cut dues this semester."
"I still can't believe they almost got rid of the entire Greek system at CRU," said Beaver shaking his head. "Thank god Cap came up with that video idea. I'm not sure if things would have worked out as well if we hadn't done that."
"I agree," said Rusty. "And even though we're having a girl right now, maybe down the line we'll have a boy that can be a future Kappa Tau."
"That would be nice," said Beaver as he took a drink of his beer. "I have the same hopes for Matt but we'll just have to see what direction he goes in life."
Just then the back door opened.
"Hey Russ, this movie is over," said Jordan. "I'm pretty tired so I think I'm going to head up to bed."
"OK babe, I'll be up later," Rusty replied as Jordan bent down and kissed him.
"Any plans for tomorrow?" Beaver asked as Rusty and him stood up and began to walk to the door.
"Not that I know of," Rusty replied. "You have anything in mind?"
"I believe the CRU football game is on television at noon," said Beaver. "If you want we could get together and watch it."
"Yeah, that sounds great," said Rusty. "I'll give you a call when I get up in the morning."
Both men walked back into a commotion in the living room.
"Plleeeeaaase mom!" begged Caleb.
"Plleeeeaaase mom!" begged Matthew.
"What's going on?" Beaver asked.
"Matt wants Caleb to come spend the night," said Ashleigh.
"It's already getting a little late," said Beaver as he looked at his watch.
"I'll be real good Uncle Beaver," said Caleb. "Plleeeaaase."
"It's fine with me if it's OK with your mom," Beaver replied.
"I don't know Caleb, you don't have any clothes packed or anything," said Casey.
"I'm sure Matt has some pajamas and clothes Caleb can borrow," said Ashleigh. "And who knows, Caleb may already have an outfit or two at my house that has been left there before."
"You may have a point there," said Casey with a small laugh.
"So yes mommy?" Caleb asked.
"Yes, you can go," Casey said as she knelt down next to Caleb. "But you have to promise me that you'll be on your best behavior and listen to Uncle Beaver and Aunt Ashleigh and include Maddison too OK?"
"Yes mommy, I will," Caleb replied as he gave her a hug.
"This is not fair!" Cadence suddenly piped in. "How come he can spend the night somewhere and I couldn't have Marissa over?"
"Cadence I told you why earlier," said Casey as she stood up.
"You wanna stay here and hang out with me tonight?" Rusty asked.
Cadence looked over at Rusty with a huge smile on her face. "Are you serious?" she asked.
"Sure," Rusty replied. "Jordan is tired and already going to bed. It'll be fun to have a little time for us to hang out and talk and catch up."
"Mom can I?" Cadence turned to Casey and asked.
"I don't see why not," Casey replied.
"Oh thank you thank you thank you!" Cadence exclaimed as she wrapped her arms around Casey. "We are going to have so much fun Uncle Rusty!"
"I'm sure I have a shirt or something upstairs you can wear to bed Cadence," said Mrs. Cartwright.
"Thanks grandma," said Cadence.
Over the next several minutes the Thompson's and Caleb piled into the car and left and Cadence and Rusty made their way into the kitchen to see what kind of cookies they could snack on.
"Well I guess I'll get going now," said Casey. "Looks like it's just me and Caitlyn tonight."
"Are you sure you don't want to leave her with us?" Mrs. Cartwright asked.
"Don't tempt me mom," said Casey with a smirk.
"I'm serious Case," said Mrs. Cartwright. "We still have the crib set up in one of the guest rooms. You know your father and I would love to have her for some grandma and grandpa time. I feel like now that Cappie's parents live in the area they see the kids more than we do."
"Now that's not true," said Casey. "You guys get them both equally."
"Well, in any case, when is the last time you've had a night completely to yourself?" Mrs. Cartwright asked.
Casey thought for a second. "Not since Cadence has been born," she replied.
"All the more reason to let her stay here with us," said Mrs. Cartwright. "You can go home and take a hot bath and relax and just not have to worry about anything for the night."
Casey hesitated. "She's still pretty young mom…." Casey began.
"Case, she's seven months old now," said Mrs. Cartwright. "She will be just fine and in very good hands."
Casey took a deep breath as she watched her mom go over and pick Caitlyn out of her carrier.
"Are you sure?" she asked once more.
"Positive, now go," said Mrs. Cartwright.
"Thanks mom," said Casey as she leaned over and kissed Caitlyn on the cheek.
Casey pulled the car into the garage, gathered her things and went into the house. It was a very strange feeling at first. Usually the house is filled with noise from the kids running around or playing or arguing or crying. For a second she really didn't know what to do with herself. But in no time she found a gallon of rocky road ice cream in the freezer and sat down on the couch, catching up on the latest episode of House as she ate it.
She was about half way through the show when the doorbell rang. Her heart began to race as she looked at the clock and wondered who on earth could be at her door at almost nine o'clock at night. She grabbed her cell phone as she slowly walked to the door in case she needed to call for help. But all of her fears went away as she looked through the peephole and found her husband standing on the other side of the door.
"Cap, what are you doing here?" she asked as she opened the door.
"Come with me," said Cappie as he reached out his hand.
"Hold on, I've got to the put the ice cream away and turn off the—," Casey began.
"Don't worry about it," said Cappie with a smile. "Lock the door and come with me."
"Uh, OK," said Casey as she took Cappie's hand and shut the door. At this point her mind was going crazy trying to figure out what was going on.
But Cappie was oddly silent. All he did was squeeze her hand as the two of them turned onto the sidewalk and began to walk down the street.
"Are you going to tell me what is going on?" Casey finally asked. "I'm kind of freaked out here."
"I'm taking you to show you something," Cappie replied.
"Was this something planned?" Casey asked suspiciously. "Is this why magically all the kids are spending the night away from the house?"
Cappie just turned to her and smiled. "It actually worked a lot better than I originally planned when Caleb wanted to stay with Matt," he said. "It was originally planned to have them all stay at your mom's but it still worked out fine."
"I knew something sounded a little strange about that," said Casey. "But I didn't think any of it would have involved you for any reason."
"Never underestimate the sneakiness of your husband," said Cappie as he leaned over and gave her a kiss on her neck.
The two of them walked for a few more minutes and eventually came to an open field with some newer houses on each side. Cappie led Casey into the middle of the field and stopped. Casey looked around with a confused look on her face.
"Is it safe for us to be out here in the middle of this field in the dark?" she asked.
"Shhh," said Cappie as he put his finger on her lips. "I have taken you here for a reason."
"OK," said Casey looking into his eyes. "What is it?"
"You are standing on our field right now," said Cappie. "This is our property."
"Interesting…." was all Casey could say, still not understanding what any of that meant.
Cappie let out a little chuckle. "You don't get what I'm getting at here?" he asked.
Casey just shook her head no.
"Well obviously with our new extended family our current house is not big enough," said Cappie as he took Casey's hands into his. "I don't know about you, but I really don't want Caitlyn sleeping in our room with us until she's eighteen."
"No, that's probably not a good idea," said Casey as she felt a few tears come as she started to realize what was going on.
"So I looked around at a few places but nothing really had everything that I felt we needed," Cappie continued. "And that's when I decided that you and I should just build our own house. That way we can have whatever we want however we want it."
"Really?" Casey asked as a few tears fell down her cheeks.
"Yup," said Cappie as he pushed a strand of Casey's hair behind her ear. "We have a meeting with the builders and designers next week to start planning."
"So I'm really standing where our future home is going to be?" Casey asked as she looked around.
"You are," Cappie replied. "It's not too far from our current house so you'll still be near Ashleigh and it's got a lot more land space for a bigger back yard for the kids to play in."
"I don't know what to say Cap," said Casey. "Other than thank you. This is so amazing. I never thought I would be able to live in a house that I helped design."
"I'm just glad you like it," said Cappie.
Casey wrapped her arms around him tightly and gave him a kiss as she backed away.
"There's one more reason why I decided tonight was the night I was going to share this information with you," said Cappie as he put his hands on Casey's waist and pulled her closer to him.
Casey just looked into his eyes, waiting for him to go on.
"Exactly ten years ago today we were sitting in my room and you asked me where I wanted to be in ten years," Cappie began.
"Oh god Cap," said Casey as tears instantly flooded her face.
"And I told you that all I wanted in ten years was to be with you," said Cappie, continuing to stare deep into Casey's eyes. "And here we are; I got exactly what I wanted. My life couldn't be any better and I would be absolutely nothing without you Casey. I just hope this is where you wanted to be in ten years too."
"Cap, I couldn't be happier," said Casey through her tears. "This is exactly where I want to be."
"So Casey Cappington I must ask," said Cappie as he leaned down so his nose just barely brushed against hers. "I know where I want to be for the rest of my life. Do you?"
"I wanna be with you."
A/N: So here it is...the end :0( It's kind of bitter sweet but I hope you all enjoyed the story over the past two years. I decided to post the final chapter today because exactly two years ago I started this story on the same day. Hard to believe it's been so long...
Thanks again for all the reviews and dedicated readers of this story. I hope I've kept the Cappie/Casey relationship live on just a little longer for us all since the show is over now. And I hope you guys liked the ending and where everyone has ended up. I personally love the whole 'I wanna be with you' moment and had to bring it back at some point. Thanks again for reading!