Our Future's Secure
Set in the SwitchVerse.
Tony peered into his parent's bedroom where the door had been left ajar, momentarily glancing back at his father who was walking away from him into his study. The five-year-old was worried, he didn't like how troubled his dad looked and he could see his mum sitting on the bed with her head in her hands. "Mummy?" He eased open the door and stuck his head inside, watching her expression as she looked up at him.
"What is it, sweetheart?" She smiled, but knew it was weak and did a terrible job of covering up how upset she was.
"You're upset, aren't you?" He cautiously stepped into the room.
Her brow creased at the frown on his face. "Oh, come here." She stood and picked him up as he met her half way, cuddling him close as she sat back on the bed. "I'm okay, don't you worry about me."
He shook his head, but hugged her back. "You're not okay, you look sad."
"I might be a little bit sad but I'm still happy." She gently stroked his blonde hair. "I love you so much and as long as I have my family I'm always gonna be mostly happy."
He didn't look convinced. "But you look like you're going to cry, I don't want you to cry. Is something wrong?"
"No, no, oh Tony, you have no idea how gorgeous you are." His constant care and concern for his family almost had her laughing. "I was just talking to your dad about some silly little things for the business, nothing for you to worry about."
He shifted away from her and looked up at her. "Did you have an argument? Are you two fighting? Some of the children at school say their parents are separated; is that what's going to happen to you?"
"No! Of course not!" She stroked his hair away from his face. "Sweetheart, I love your dad with all my heart, you know that. You know we're in love and we've never been stronger." He looked dubious, narrowing his eyes at her. "We didn't even argue, I promise."
He jumped off the bed and ran out the room, Jackie watching him with concern, confused that he would ever imagine his parents were about to split up when they spent half their lives expressing their love for each other.
Less than a minute later Tony returned, pulling his father after him by the hand. "Look! I told you Mummy's upset, she's gonna cry and you look sad. Please don't fight with her Daddy; I don't want you to fight." He tugged on his hand and was teary-eyed himself. "You love each other, I know you do."
Pete looked across at his wife, her sadness mirrored in his expression. He took a deep breath then looked down at the little boy. "But Tony, we aren't fighting, we didn't fight at all." He picked his son up and sat him on the bed then swiftly pulled Jackie into a hug. "Sorry, I had no idea you were this worried. You've got no need to worry though, the business isn't at risk; our future's secure."
"Alright." She nestled into him. "It's just been a long day, and this stupid mess needs fixing. I don't know how we're going to fix it, I feel constantly worried, look I'm getting even more worry lines."
He shook his head against her. "You're beautiful just the way you are."
She smiled. "Thank you. Think I just needed a cuddle; it will be fine, won't it?"
"Definitely, so stop worrying. I told you everything will be fine, just trust me."
"I do, it's just the stress making me emotional, definitely not you, I'm sorry." She slipped one arm from around him and reached across to her son. "See? It's not your dad."
Pete wrapped one arm around Tony and pulled him onto his lap so he could cuddle them both. "I love you, Jackie." He smiled then rubbed his son's arm. "And thank you, Tony, for letting me know your mum needed me."
"Yes, thank you, sweetheart." Jackie gave him a squeeze. "And please never forget how much we love each other." It still worried her that he'd even mentioned the idea of them splitting up.
He grinned, leaning up to kiss their cheeks. "Love you." He hopped off the bed and went bounding out of the room.
Pete cuddled Jackie closer. "Look at him, our little boy's a walking miracle, as if we needed any more proof after Rose that you're an amazing mum."
"And you're a great dad, don't you ever doubt that." She smiled. "But you do know this means we can never fight or we'll have him on our case, don't you?"
He leant his forehead against hers, unable to keep the smile from his face. "Good." He nudged her nose with his and softly kissed her as if that was proof enough that he didn't want to fight with her anyway.