Author's Note: This is the last chapter. I will be continuing the story of Juice and Milla in further stories but I'll be taking more time to do so. Thanks for the response to the stories.
I don't own anything you recognize, only original characters are my own
"So you want me to make my salad and you forget half the ingredients." I stared at my mom in exasperation.
"Sorry, I had a lot on my mind. Just go to the grocery store and get them it's not like you don't have time." She pulled me into a hug, then let me go and pushed me toward the door.
"Fine, but if I miss any of the good gossip I'll be pissed." I glared as I walked out the door and got in my jeep.
I drove to the grocery store certain that my mom was up to something, her mind was a steel trap and she wouldn't forget anything, even something as meaningless as ingredients. I didn't have long to contemplate my mother's motives when I got in the grocery store and a little blonde angel attached herself to my middle.
"Auntie Milla, I missed you." Little Ellie Winston, my goddaughter held so tight I thought she'd cut off my air.
"Ellie doll, I've missed you too." I hugged her back and looked up to see Donna smiling, something that had been rare for the last three years that Opie had been in prison.
"Hey Donna, how are you?" I let Ellie go but she held my hand.
"You know how it is. I just came here to get some groceries. There's a family dinner tonight and Gemma wanted me to make my spiced corn." She knew I was on the outs with my dad and was a strong proponent of the "Clay needs to apologize" front.
"I'm here to get some stuff for my hummus salad. I'm going to end this feud tonight. I can't handle missing anything with the family anymore." I swung Ellie's hand and Kenny came over to give me a hug.
"From what I hear you'll be getting one of your own soon." She smiled again and I looked at her with a raised eyebrow.
"I'm not having a baby Donna, at least not yet." I hugged Kenny tighter then sent him and his sister over to their mom while I got a basket, Donna followed suit.
"Really? I guess I heard wrong. I heard one of the Old Ladies was pregnant and, with the way you and Juice…well I thought it was you." She followed me as I got the couscous and cucumber that were my missing ingredients.
"Well Bobby's got a new Old Lady and you know his track record…" I let it drift and Donna nodded.
We chatted as I followed her on her grocery trip, making sure at the checkout that she put her food in my pile. She didn't like accepting charity so I made sure she knew I was ensuring that my goddaughter got fed. When it was family she was less likely to protest. When we got to the cars I gave Ellie, Kenny and Donna a hug and we went our separate ways, me to my mom's house and them to their own. When I got to the house I saw Juice sitting on the step smoking and knew that I had a silly grin on my face.
"Hey beautiful." He got up, stubbed out his cigarette and grabbed the grocery bag from the passenger seat.
"Hey yourself, why aren't you inside?" I grabbed him by his collar and dragged him into a kiss.
"Gemma wanted me outside, I don't know why she does most of the things she does.' He kissed me again.
"And you never will." I put my head on his shoulder and breathed in the smell of aftershave, smoke and musk that were all Juice and I sighed.
We broke out embrace and went into the house. I went into the kitchen and Juice went to the den with the other guys who got there early. I heard the undeniable sounds of Grand Theft Auto and rolled my eyes. It didn't matter; the dinners were always the same. The women stayed in the kitchen, while the men got to do their own thing. Bobby was the only man to contribute to the dinners. He usually brought a cake, torte, or tarts and they were always fantastic. I looked around the kitchen and didn't see the dessert which struck me as odd.
"I started the salad baby; better get that couscous on the boil." Luanne handed me a pot with water in it and I emptied the bag in it.
All of us chatted and goofed around while we made the food. I was growing nervous; I hadn't seen dad and I didn't know what his reaction would be to me being there. Mom kept assuring me that it would be ok, but then again I never thought he would hit me.
"Hey babe, we brought the dessert." I heard my dad's voice and I tensed up.
"It'll be ok baby." Mom said as she went out to greet dad. I mashed the potatoes as I waited for retribution. The potatoes were well mashed when my dad popped his head in the kitchen.
"You're coming with me kiddo, hurry up." I put down the bowl and followed him out as Luanne gave me a sympathetic squeeze of the shoulder.
As I headed outside with dad Juice came out of the den and started to follow but mom put her hand on his shoulder and he just looked at me with concern. I gave him what I felt was a comforting look and went out the door. Dad brought me to the garage and had me sit on the stool by the bench and he shut the door.
"This talk has been a long time comin' baby girl." He pulled up another stool and sat by me.
"I'm sorry dad, I kno-" He stopped me and grabbed my hand.
"You stood up to me for your man and I'm so proud of you for that Milla. That was a bad night and I was on a short fuse. I knew I should have let you in with Juice but I was mad as hell at you. You know what you did was stupid right?" He looked at me and I nodded. "Good, you know you were stupid. I never should have hit you but you put me in a bad spot. I'm the fucking president and if I can't stand up to a little girl half my size, how can I keep things in line with the club?"
"I understand that daddy, I understood that when you hit me." I squeezed his hand.
"You never would have understood it nine months ago baby. This whole thing has had me take stock. You're a woman now, but you're still my little girl and I need to get used to that. I expect you to treat me with the same respect the Old Ladies do, your man is doing right by the club and I want his head to stay in the game. What do you say baby, you still wanna be my little girl." I said nothing I just hugged my dad and he hugged back.
We walked to the house with me under his arm and I smiled. This was what I wanted, I wanted my dad back. I hugged him with one arm and he kissed the top of my head. Dad opened the door for me and I was shocked by what I saw.
"Surprise!" I grinned when I saw the cake with "Happy Birthday Milla!" on it and the presents piled on the table in the living room. Mom and the others came up and I got celebratory hugs and kisses on the cheek.
I grinned at everyone and settled in for a night with my family. This was the way life was supposed to be, me with my man, my family, a job and a home. I was living the good life and I wouldn't give it up. I was living the life my Nan wanted, thriving not just surviving.