A/N: Here we are at the end of the road for the story. When I began writing this over a year ago, I had no idea that it would go on this long. For the longest, this story was my baby. I've added more babies to the mixture since then, but this story will always hold a special place in my heart. To everyone who followed, favorited, and reviewed, thank you from the bottom of my heart. This chapter jumps ahead in time, a little over three years to be exact. I hope you enjoy!
"Mommy, look at me.", Teddy says with the brightest grin on his face. He's holding a pile of mud in his hands while his khaki shorts and white shirt are covered in it. I can't help but smile at my sweet little boy. At four years old, he's the spitting image of his dad.
"Oh Teddy, you've got a mess, but it's ok. Keep playing and having fun."
"We found her Phoebe.", I hear Christian saying as he comes up behind me with our three-year old daughter in his arms. Never did I imagine having two children so close in age, but I wouldn't change it for the world. While Teddy has his dad's hair color, Phoebe Grace's hair is chestnut like mine, and she has her dad wrapped around her little finger.
When Grace called this morning to invite the family over for a cookout, we were thrilled that the kids would get to spend the day with everyone. In the last few years, the Grey family has gone through many changes, but we've done it together. It wasn't long after Mia and Ethan eloped that they learned they were expecting a baby. Carrick Joshua Kavanagh is now three years old and is as talkative and sweet as his mom. Baby number two, another boy, is due in a few months.
"Ethan, will you get his hat out of the car. This sun is awful today.", Mia say while walking towards us with Carrick holding his hand. "Hey guys."
"Hey. Hi Carrick, how are you?", I ask.
"I want to play with mud.", he answers.
"All right. Go and have fun with your cousins." Christian places Phoebe down on the ground, and she's soon running towards her brother and cousin. "Look at them. They get along so well."
"It's times like this that I miss Dad.", Christian says through tears. "I still wish that he could be here and see the next generation of Greys. He'd love and spoil them like crazy."
"No doubt about it. I know that he's looking down at us with pride. It's been almost five years since he's been gone, but it still feels like yesterday." Christian wraps his arms around his sister while we stand and watch them playing.
"Hey, why is there hugging going on without me?", Elliot shouts as he and Kate join us. They were married a month after Mia and Ethan and learned around the same time that they were expecting a baby. A month after Mia gave birth, Kate delivered a healthy baby girl, Ava as well as a healthy boy named Nicholas Owen.
"How are you feeling?", Kate asks. Both Mia and I look at each other and wonder which one of us she's referring to. Mia's not the only one who is expecting. Christian and I are expanding our family once again, this time, we're having another boy who we're naming Samuel Elliot. The look on Elliot's face when we told him that we were giving the baby his name was one that I'll never forget. In the time that I've known him, he's been the brother that I never had, and I'm grateful for him being such a wonderful uncle to the kids.
"I'm feeling pretty good.", I answer while moving over to stop Phoebe from throwing mud.
"Same here. I can't wait to meet this little guy."
"I think we're going to need a bigger backyard with all the babies that are coming.", Grace laughs. "I'm one proud grandmother."
"Well, I think that I speak for all of us in saying that we're proud to have you as our mom, mother-in-law, and grandmother. Mom, you've been the rock of this family these last few years, and we can't thank you enough.", Christian says.
"There's no need to thank me. I'm your mom, and it's what I do. I love each and every one of you."
"We love you too Grace.", I smile at her as my phone rings. "That's probably my dad. I told him to call when they arrived at the hotel."
"Hey Annie, we're at the hotel.", my dad tells me when I answer the call. "You should see the view from our room. It's gorgeous."
"I'm glad to hear that dad. How was your flight?"
"Great. Your mom slept most of the time, but I didn't mind. I could stare at her all day as she sleeps." My parents were remarried a year ago and have never been happier. They're just now getting around to taking their honeymoon to Hawaii.
"Christian said that we're going to take the kids on vacation after the baby comes and gets a little older."
"How are my grandkids?"
"They're perfect. You'd be amazed at how much they've grown in the last few days. Teddy is right there with Christian, and Phoebe, well, she's everywhere. She loves to prowl around the house and get into things."
"Just think, soon you'll have one more to chase after.", he laughs.
"I know, and I'm looking forward to it."
"Sweetheart, we're about to head out to the beach. I'll call you later."
"Ok, give Mom my love." As I end the call, I feel the all too familiar strong arms around me. "Dad said they've got a nice view from the hotel."
"I bet it's not as nice as the view that I have right now.", Christian whispers before our lips melt together. "You're incredible, you know that?"
"You're not so bad yourself Mr. Grey. Tell me, did you ever imagine this would be your life?"
"No, but I'm glad that it is. The day that you fell into my office was the beginning of my world as I knew it changing. I had all these visions of what my life would be like, but the way it's turned out is better." I wrap my arms around his waist and look into his piercing grey eyes.
"Reality is much better than an illusion."