Mrs. Meyer still owns the charterers, but I own the idea.
This story will contain: Daddyward, Dom Carlsile, lots of BDSM, oh and Constructorward. Pictures can be found in my Facebook group (Addicted-to-romione-bedward Fanfiction) at Photos in the folder named after the story. You can find there the banner made by Falling Stars
A special thank you to harrytwifan for helping me with betaing this one.
13 years later
"Christ, Dad! Get a grip on yourself!" Kenna groans, narrowing her eyes at me.
I've been on a roll since early this morning, when it finally hit me that in less than twenty-four hours, my baby girl will be moving out. She's going to college in New York. With her boyfriend.
I'm going to lose her.
We're having a party for her, but I don't feel like partying at all.
Sighing heavily, she walks around the kitchen island and hugs me. "Daddy, I promise to visit."
I sniff in her hair and hug her tightly.
My little Kenna has grown up so much. She has turned into a beautiful young woman with a fierce personality, which has gotten her in heaps of trouble during her teenage years. She has always been a spitfire.
"Mak, your boy toy is looking for you!" Nathan shouts, just as the front door slams to the wall.
There will soon be a dent in that wall. We need to buy protection for the door handle.
Kenna pulls away from me, scowling.
"Stop calling me Mak!" she snaps. She tolerated the nickname when he was little, but now he's taking advantage of it, knowing she hates it. "And Thomas is my boyfriend, not boy toy, you idiot!"
"Hey, guys!" I warn them.
They can fight like no other.
I wish Carl was back already from the last minute shopping trip. This reminds me, Nathan is grounded for sneaking to the kitchen in the middle of night and eating the cake we ordered for Kenna. It had been special—custom made. Carlisle was so upset, he insisted on running out to find another.
"Invite him inside, sweetie," I tell Kenna, pushing her to the door. "Our family and friends should be here any minute now."
"Seriously?" she asks, skeptically. "You won't throw a hissy fit when we touch? Because it will happen, Dad. I love him."
"As long as the touching is decent…" I say, shrugging.
"Yup, not footsie under the table like on Christmas dinner!" Nathan shouts after her.
Kenna shrieks something at him, but I can't make out the words.
How did I miss it?
Judging by her burgundy red face, it's true, too.
But I've been out of it last Christmas. Carl has been so tired, working double when one of his colleagues got married and went on their honeymoon. But once that man returned to work, it was Carl's chance to take some time off.
I took him to the beach for Valentine's Day.
As we are constantly learning with these two, we realized it was a mistake to leave the kids alone for a whole week.
The state we found the house in was…like another World War had taken place while we were gone.
"Can you not mention that to Carlisle?" I beg Nathan.
"But he knows! He had a convo with Tom-boy after dinner. You never pay attention." He rolls his eyes at me.
Ah, to be fourteen and not care to spell the whole word. My boy is going through the teenage phase full-blown.
I'm afraid of the moment we'll need the have a convo about birds and bees, though I'm sure he knows all about it from the Internet and from his friends.
"I'm home, sugar!" Carlisle exclaims. "Hey, kiddo." He pats Nathan's shoulder as he passes him. "Can you bring your sister inside, along with Tom? They seem…glued."
I chuckle, glancing out the window. Sure enough, he has her pressed against the side of his car and they're kissing. I'm surprise to see Nathan outside, already. Damn, the kid is fast. He rushes over, pulling them apart, making Tom frown and Kenna push her brother against the car, screaming.
"God, they used to get along so well," I mutter.
"And they'll go back to that in a few years, sugar. Or whenever Nathan gets himself a girl and understands the importance of intimacy."
"Yeah, maybe." I go to him and wrap my arms around his waist from behind.
"Have you been crying? Again?" he checks, turning in my arms.
"A little," I admit. "I'll miss my baby."
"I will, too, but she is going to visit. Don't worry, Edward. We trust Tom, right?"
"I guess." I shrug. He hasn't proved otherwise. Not yet. "I hope he doesn't ditch her once they get there. I will seriously track him down and wring his neck."
"You're too pessimistic."
"I'm being realistic, baby. Boys his age get bored fast."
"Not when they're in love. This coming from you is rich, seriously. Didn't you move away for college with Jasper? Neither of you ditched the other once you got here. They'll stick together because they know only each other."
I sigh, realizing he's right. He cups my chin, then descends for a kiss.
As if there's a warning sound that we're having a parents' moment, the kids come inside. Chuckling, we separate.
It seems they have made a truce or something, because they're not fighting anymore. To my surprise, I see Nathan dragging Tom to his room, talking about some game. Kenna comes closer, her eyes shifting between us, and before I know it, she wraps her arms around our waists.
"I'll miss you!" she sobs. I can feel her fist around my shirt in the back.
"We'll miss you, too, angel," Carl whispers, stroking her hair. "But please compose yourself before you make your father cry again."
"Yeah, sweetie," I sniff. Great. I'm already breaking down.
"We'll talk on the phone and Skype every day," she tells us.
"Of course, sweetie," I agree, crushing her to my chest.
The doorbell rings, announcing the arrival of our guests. Carlisle separates from us to go answer, while we wipe our tears, before greeting the guests.
It's Bella with Jake and Seth. From what I can hear, she's in the middle of scolding her son. He is always in trouble.
I interrupt her mid shout, hugging her. "Leave the kid alone," I whisper in her ear.
"Leave him alone? He's too freaking young for that shit!" she screams.
"Uh huh. What have you done, Seth?" I ask, turning to him. Being thirteen and just a year younger than our Nathan, they're great friends. That comes in handy, because if Seth is in trouble for something, I know what Nathan's hiding from us, and vice versa.
"Yeah, tell Uncle Ed. I bet you don't want that, do you?" Bella hisses.
True, the kid looks up at me, which is humbling. I don't want to say Jake doesn't set a good example, but considering their child finds me a model is mind-boggling.
Nathan returning with Tom diverts our attention.
Jake walks over to me, muttering that Bella caught Seth red-handed with an adult magazine. Oh. That explains it.
One thing we're cool about is allowing Nathan to buy adult magazines, but if he has questions about anything, we're the first option; then come friends or the Internet. I hope he will listen to us when the time comes.
By the time everyone arrives, our living room looks crowded. All our friends are present, including some of Kenna's girl friends from high school. She's the center of attention, and like a good host, makes time to talk with all her guests.
I find Tom eyeing her legs or ass for too long at times, but I let it slide. I try to remind myself I was just as bad at his age.
I see them disappearing into the kitchen every now and then to bring refreshments, or so they say. Only our guests shield the view to the open kitchen, but I can definitely see them in a lot of inappropriate positions.
Carl keeps patting my legs, making me turn my attention to whoever we're supposed to making conversation with.
"Do you realize they'll do a lot more than that once they get to New York?" he whispers in my ear.
"I'd rather not think of that," I mumble.
When we bring the cake in, everyone settles, and it's nice to have some quiet. Suddenly, the music stops playing. Nathan has the remote in his hand.
"Can I have your attention?" he asks loudly, as if he hasn't already gotten our attention by cutting off the music. "Good." He nods. "I want to say a few words about my sister."
"I'm still alive, you idiot! And I don't plan on dying any time soon! This isn't my eulogy!" Kenna snaps, glaring at him.
"Good things only, sis! And a few confessions," he adds sheepishly.
"Let him talk," I advise her. It's not like we can stop Nate once he has something on his mind.
"First, I really love you and I'll miss you, sis! I know I haven't shown it lately, but I guess our bonding times are over. Now you have Tom-boy."
Kenna looks at him, shocked. I am shocked, too.
"What else did I want to say?" Nathan scratches his head. "Oh, yeah. C lied to you about your rat."
I gasp, feeling the blood draining from my head. I always suspected five year old Nathan to be behind Squeaky's disappearance, but for that to be true…God.
"I was simply trying to pacify you, honey," Carlisle explains when Kenna looks hurt. "No one knew exactly what happened to him."
"I do," Nate says in a high voice, then clears his throat. "After he bit Ed…I got really angry. He always told you to keep it in your room and locked away."
"Hey, don't drag me into this!" I protest. But it's hard when he calls us—his parents—C and Ed. He's been calling us that for years now. Only when he wants to make a point does he calls us Dad.
"You killed my pet?" Kenna gasps in surprise, wide green eyes locked on her brother.
"Honestly, I didn't mean it. Swear to God, sis. I wanted to hide him—in your bathroom—to give you a scare. But then I heard you coming to your room and…he squirmed out of my grasp…fell in the bowl… When you stormed into the bathroom, I flushed the toilet just to have an excuse to be there. Seriously, didn't think about it." He looks sad and ashamed.
"You drowned Squeaky! You're a murderer!" she wails. Tom, like the good sport he is, wraps his arms around her, soothing her.
"Nathan!" I hear myself shouting, but I'm outraged. "How could you? Do you have any idea how much she loved that pet?"
"It just happened, Dad."
I don't know what surprises me more—him calling me Dad, or him talking about it so casually.
"Oh, but she took revenge on me. A few years later when I had Greg over. Remember, after my birthday party? When I woke up with my face painted with shit."
"It was just shoe cream. Stop being dramatic. But I see where you confuse brown shoe cream with shit," Kenna tells him snidely.
"Kenna!" both Carl and I shout.
I pity our guests for being witnesses to this conversation.
"What? It was easy to blame that Greg kid." She shrugs.
I share a horrified look with Carl. We forbade Nate to go anywhere near that boy, knowing he was behind our son's face painting. I don't even remember what he had written on his cheeks and forehead, only that we screamed at that poor kid and had a talk with his parents.
What must they have thought of us? Jesus.
"Greg was my best friend, Mak. But whatever. I'm over it. You're forgiven." He walks to his sister and hugs her tightly. "I'll miss you lots."
"Aw, Natey! I'll miss you, too, lil bro."
"There they are," Carl whispers to me. "Told you they'd make peace."
I give him a watery smile, leaning into his side. "I love to see them happy and getting along."
The next day, early in the morning, we pile in my car and drive baby girl to the airport.
She has become quite the early bird since she started high school, but apparently that doesn't apply to Nathan. His head is against the backseat window and he's snoring loudly.
Kenna's looking through her backpack making sure she has everything she needs.
Carlisle is trying to relax her, but it doesn't work as she can't find her lipstick.
I roll my eyes—the tragedy.
A sudden idea comes to me, and I just know it will work. It's going to ease her nerves and make her laugh.
"Kenna," I grab her attention, glancing at her through the rear view mirror.
"What, Dad?" She won't even look at me, busy searching for something that's probably in her bathroom at home…forgotten.
"Ask Mr. Owl. He must be at fault."
She meets my eyes and a small smile appears on her face. Ah, a smile, nonetheless.
Then she scowls, making my face fall.
"Daddy Jay was such a tease." She starts laughing.
I wink, happy that even after all these years, she still calls him "Daddy Jay." She hasn't forgotten him, but I do my best to keep his memory alive for her. Jazz had been her daddy at some point, and he loved her more than life itself.
"What?" Carl asks, confused, making me laugh, too.
"There used to be an owl in the tree where we lived…and when something went missing…he blamed Mr. Owl."
"And I always believed him. I thought owls were thieves," Kenna says, amused.
"That goes on the No list on what to tell kids as they grow up," Nathan mumbles sleepily.
"You were sleeping!" Kenna accuses him.
"How can I when you make so much noise? I'll need all the energy for later, cuz once you're gone, I'll be alone against them!" He points to us, as if that's something bad.
"Good luck!" Kenna cheers. I see her leaning into him and whispering.
"Hey, none of that!" Carl says sternly. "No conspiring against your parents. Not funny."
"Just advising him on how to broach the subject," Kenna says smiling.
Nathan looks at her, panicked.
I share a look with Carl. Uh huh. It's time for The Talk.
The goodbye at the airport is tearful and sad. I'm a sobbing mess, but I don't care. Once Kenna turns to hug her brother, Carl wraps his arms around me, shushing me, his lips on my forehead.
Tom's parents don't seem to hold any better than us, though only his mom is sobbing like me. Poor boy looks embarrassed being kissed and touched by his mom, but he'll miss her once they're gone.
Before I know it, they're going for their check-in. With a final wave over their shoulders…they disappear in the mass of people.
"It's not the end of the world. We'll keep in touch with them," Martha, Tom's mom, tells me, patting my arm.
"Yeah, but I've never been apart from her. Not without knowing I'll see her in a week or a month or… This is not like camp."
"You can think like that," Stu, Martha's husband, offers. "It will be easier."
"Well, it's all good." Nathan grins at us. "I can have the TV all to myself, more food for me… Ah, alone at last!"
I shake my head as Carl grabs him in a headlock, making him cry out.
"We'll keep in touch," Martha tells me, winking. "I have a feeling we'll become family one day."
I smile at her. "Not any time soon. No offense."
"None taken, Edward. But I can see how much our children love each other."
I can see it, too.
At home, I throw the keys on the small table near the door, toe my sneakers off, then head to the fridge.
I'm trying to pretend this is a day like all others.
"Make that two beers, sugar!" Carl calls after me.
"How did you know?" I wonder, grabbing two Heinekens. "You want anything, kiddo?" I ask Nathan over the opened door.
"A beer too."
"Not cool," I mutter.
"Cherry coke," he says, looking defeated.
I grab a can and kick the door closed, walking to the living room.
"So what did you want to talk to us about?" Carl asks, opening the beers.
"Kenna and her big mouth," Nate grumbles. "You guys have to understand something."
"If you tell us what the problem is, we'll understand," I tell him, sinking into Carl's side. He wraps his arm around me, bringing me closer.
"Yeah, we're as open-minded as we can get." He nods.
"It's not your fault," Nate starts. "It's just how I feel."
He opens his can of cherry coke and takes a sip, staring at the floor.
"The suspense is killing me," I joke.
Nathan raises his head, looking worried. His lower lip disappears between his teeth—a trait he picked up from Kenna.
"I…" He clamps his mouth shut, swallowing thickly.
"Just tell us. Out with it," Carl encourages him. "You didn't do anything bad, did you?"
He just shakes his head. "I'd don't know why I'm so freaking nervous! You, of all people, will understand!" he exclaims, his hands trembling horribly.
"What is it, Nate?" I coax him.
The hand holding the can trembles violently, and he places it on the coffee table.
"I thought it would be easier." He sighs. "For fuck's sake! You're gay, too!"
I choke on my gulp of beer.
I definitely didn't expect that.
"You mean…" Carl whispers softly.
"Yes, C. I figured it out a couple months ago. But fuck…"
"No cussing," I say automatically.
Carl shoots me an incredulous look, before turning to our son. "Is there someone, Nate?"
"No. I mean, maybe. Not really. He doesn't know I exist."
This hits a little too close to home. It reminds me of me at his age when I was attracted to Jazz.
"You don't know that," I blurt out. "Talk to him."
"Okay, fine. He knows I exist," Nate says forcedly. "Duh! But we can't. I mean…I can't tell him."
"Course you can!" I insist.
"DAD! He's my guitar teacher! You know, the dude you pushed into my life when I told you guitar isn't something I like? Yep, that's him."
"Zach?" Carlisle asks.
"Yep. And let me tell you, I'm not the only one doing the eye-fuck during our lessons."
"Nate…you're too young!" I protest.
"Uh, in case you forgot, Zach is only seventeen. It was your genius idea to get a teenager to teach me guitar. We'd get along or some shit. We're both underage. We can do whatever we want—just fire him. Please."
"Next time he comes to give you a lesson, we'll talk with him," Carl decides. "Thank you for telling us."
"We're not upset," I assure him. "I don't know about Carl, but I'm shocked about your potential boyfriend being Zach. He's a cool kid, though." I shrug.
"Thanks! You're the best!" He tackles us, hugging both of us tightly. "Can I call him over now? Please?"
That's twice he said please—in a matter of minutes. He must really want this.
After a look at my husband, I nod.
Our kids like to keep us on our toes, but I wouldn't have it any other way. As long as I have Carlisle by my side, I know everything is going to be okay. He's my rock.
I will post pictures of how I see the children once they grew up on my FB group page.
I truly hope you all enjoyed the ride with me. I just checked and damn, it's been eleven months since I posted the first chapter, give or take a few days.
There will be another slash story on the way. I promise...just no idea when I'll start posting. I'm still working on the plot.
PS: Don't forget about the outtake for this one. It's my Fandom for Oklahoma donation. Once I'm allowed to post it, you will find it in Watermarks and Ripped Pages Outtakes.