AN: I know I said I was done, but some people requested an epilogue, so here it is. Not very long and probably not very good. I tried to get the important people in there (ie. Amy, Ian, Dan), and I mention Casey just barely. You can have everyone end up with whoever, the only definites in my story is that Amy and Ian end up together, Dan and his girlfriend Sam end up together, each couple with two kids, and Casey marries a Parisian architect name Cecily. Amy and Ian have Maddie and Hayden, Dan and Sam have Max and Gracie, and Casey and Cecily have Emory, Ally, and Toby. Anyway, this will be the last installment. In all honest, I have run out of ideas for this story, but I'm glad my readers enjoyed it while it lasted.
Dedication: To my readers, reviewers, and alerters! Thanks for keeping me in line, even if that line was really curved.
Disclaimer: I own nothing you recognize.
Amy sighed in contentment, leaning back in the wicker chair set upon the bright green lawn. Though it was early in the day, she felt oddly energized and happy, something which didn't usually accompany the mornings, but today… today was a good day. She shut her eyes, humming softly to a tune in her head, loving the feel of the sun as it washed over her. It wasn't often that her mornings were this peaceful, and she was going to soak up as much of the quiet as she-
Amy refrained from groaning as the morning air filled with high pitched greetings and giggles. She turned away from the book which had been resting on the table before her, looking back towards the house and her daughter who was running on wobbly legs towards her. Amy smiled at the look of the toddler with pig tails and a blue sundress, her smile bright and wide. Immediately, the mother forgot all about the broken quiet as her daughter came pattering down the lawn.
Amy kneeled upon the ground, sweeping the girl into her arms without missing a beat, squeezing her tightly in her arms. She stood without so much as a groan, swinging the girl onto her hip and plopping a kiss into her dark hair.
"How are you this amazing morning, Maddie?" Amy asked brightly, peering down at the girl who curled her hands into her mother's hair, tugging on it slightly, before smiling up at her mom.
"Daddy says we can go to the British Museum, Mummy," the toddler proclaimed jubilantly, "and he said we can go see the mummies and paintings and the Rose Stone-"
"The Rosetta Stone?" Amy broke in, reaching up to tie back a curl which had fallen from the three year old's pigtail. Sure, she may be young, but she was also the daughter of a Lucian and a Madrigal (which had taken Amy awhile to grow accustomed too, but which she reveled in now that she knew the truth behind the family). As the eldest offspring of two of the brightest Cahill members, Maddie, since her birth, had been surrounded by books, songs, toys, just about anything that would help her grow mentally and physically. Yet, it seemed as though the girl had the mental development down pat. She said her first world ("Dada"; something which Ian still gloated about to Amy) at only nine months, and what seemed like minutes but were actually months later, she was speaking almost perfect sentences. Her parents couldn't be more proud.
"Yeah that!" Maddie nodded brightly, before continuing to babble on and on about what her Daddy had promised she would see that day. Amy listened studiously for several more minutes, nodding, smiling, and interrupting at all the right moments. Glancing up, she saw her husband standing on the back steps of their house, gesturing for the two to come in, before ducking inside the house himself. Slowly, Amy began her way back up to the house, balancing the still chatting toddler in one hand and her book in the other.
When the mother and daughter reached the back door, Ian was waiting patiently for the two, taking his daughter with one hand whilst passing Amy a glass of orange juice with the other. He placed a soft kiss on his wife's cheek, whispering a gentle "Good morning" to her before moving towards the kitchen table and seating his still chattering daughter in her booster seat next to the high chair where Hayden, their babbling eight month old boy.
Amy smiled at the scene before her, gently tracing the faint scars on her hands, admiring the sweet way in which her husband tried to get their daughter to eat her Cheerios, but instead the toddler seemed more content to continue to talk about their trip to the museum. Laughing under her breath, Amy moved across the table to her son, placing a soft kiss on his head as she too grabbed a small bowl of oatmeal and began to feed it to the boy, spoonful by spoonful.
"Do you think Max and Gracie can go with us, Daddy?" Maddie asked, precariously picking up a Cheerio with her thumb and forefinger, studying it for a moment, before placing it into her mouth, crunching down on it happily. Amy could tell that Ian desperately wanted to groan, and she was proud he didn't. She may have been married to him for four years now, but that didn't mean his feeling towards her brother had changed in the slightest. Even now that they were brother-in-laws, the two still couldn't stand each other despite the continuous encouraging from their wives. Dan's wife, who Amy had met days after the Cahill reunion, was forever full of life with bouncing dark curls and a sense of humor to match Dan's, she really was the perfect match for Amy's brother. When Amy and Sam learned that they were pregnant, they immediately started preparing themselves, buying books, clothes, toys, just about anything baby related that they could lay their hands on. They even had a joint baby shower and went into labor within hours of the other, Dan and Sam being the first to welcome their son Max into the world with Maddie just minutes behind. Needless to say, the two were pretty darn close even with their husbands close to hating the other.
"I don't know, Maddie," Ian said slowly, rubbing the back of his neck thoughtfully. Amy knew he wanted to say no, hoping to be able to spend a day away from Dan, but Maddie broke in before he could say another word.
"Please, Daddy," she begged, her eyes, which were very much like her mother's, wide and hopefully. She pressed her lips together, the closest she could get to a pout yet excelling at puppy dog eyes, something the toddler knew would work on her daddy.
Ian groaned the second his daughter's eyes widened, and he nodded begrudgingly, shrugging slightly. Immediately, Maddie perked up, smiling brightly and emitting a loud "Yay!" Hayden, noticing the happiness in the air, began to smile and laugh his contagious baby laugh, giggling out little chunks of his baby oatmeal onto the plastic tray before him.
"Well," Amy said brightly, wiping gently at the baby's mouth with a damp cloth, "I should go call Uncle Dan and Auntie Sam, shouldn't I? And Uncle Casey as well, seeing as he's in town?" Maddie squealed excitedly at the thought of her goofy god-father, munching cheerfully on her Cheerios while Hayden waved his arms around cheerful, popping his lips together, and Ian merely shot his wife a grumpy look.
Standing from her seat, Amy made her way around the table and to the phone. Before she was too far from the table though, she stopped next to her husband, leaning down so she could whisper in his ear.
"I promise this time won't be as bad as the last," she murmured, kissing the skin before his ear softly. "And if he is really mean to you, you tell me, and we'll fix it." Ian chuckled lightly, turning his head to face his wife.
"And how will you 'fix it'," he questioned, an eyebrow raised. Amy smirked, something she had become very good at after being around Ian for the last five years.
"We'll give him nightmares," she answered conspiratorially, shrugging her shoulders as though it was the most obvious thing in the world.
Looking back at his daughter and son once more, Ian stood so that he towered over his wife, his hands winding around waist and under her shirt, tracing the smooth scars on her lower back.
"How do you suggest we give him nightmares, love?" he asked, nuzzling his nose into her hair and placing a kiss on her neck. Amy giggled lightly, pulling away from him slightly so that their eyes met.
"I do have a few ideas," she informed him, before pulling him down so his lips met hers, so very similar to every other kiss the two had ever had. One of passion, love, and each with its own individual story.
Signing off (for the last time on this story. Really, I mean it),