A wide yawn split Dylan Mitchell's face in the early morning of August twenty-fifth as he sat in front of the computer and flexed his cramped hand, working on his secret project. He rubbed his eyes and refocused on the computer, knowing that Jade would be getting up any minute now.

Speaking of which…

"Hey, you."

Dylan jumped a mile in the air when Jade wrapped her arms around his shoulders and spoke with her head on his shoulder.

"Good morning." Dylan returned the greeting, slamming the notebook in front of him closed and shutting down the website he was on.

"Okay…" Jade looked at him strangely. "What's with that?"

"Nothing." Dylan told her, getting up. "Nothing important."

She raised her eyebrows, looking so much like her mother. "Uh–huh."

She didn't believe him, but she didn't push him for the real answer either. She knew he would tell her if it really mattered.

"So," Dylan turned towards the kitchen. "Breakfast."

He was in the middle of whisking eggs when his mother's words from the nineteenth came back to him. He was startled to realize that he had never told Jade what he had overheard Victoria saying. So he brought it up.

"Hey, you'll never guess what my mom said a few days ago." He informed her.

"Then why don't you just tell me?" She answered, glancing up from buttering toast.

"Mom said," he paused for dramatic effect, but the pause gave him time to consider if it was really wise to share his mother's words. The conversation that it could quite possibly start…

"What'd she say?" Jade asked.

Oh well, no turning back now. "She said that she thought… that… well, apparently, she thinks that we – you and I – are going to be together for a very long time."

Jade looked back up at him. "What did she say to make you think that she thought that?"

Dylan replayed the conversation between his parents to Jade.

"Huh." Jade remarked, sounding deep in thought and maybe a little surprised. She bit her lip and twirled her claddagh around her finger. "What do you think of that? Marriage? Kids?"

Dylan sighed. "I don't know for sure. I've always thought I was too young to think like that yet." He paused, thinking, before continuing, "Here's the thing, though, I've thought about it this week,… and I don't know that… I would, will, know how to, well, how to live without you when you guys move back into your own place. I know that sounds cliché, but, yeah…What we're doing here, is quite literally running a household together. More than one person has said that it's like we're all ready married.

I have no basis for this theory, but here it is: I think that when you move, it's going to feel like getting a divorce. An unwilling one at that. At least on my part."

Jade nodded. "I know."

Dylan grinned despite himself. "And, really, kids don't bother me as much as they used to. I mean, we take care of five. One or two sounds easy."


Nathan stayed still in the hallway, mulling over the conversation he had just overheard between the two teenagers. Then he spun silently on his toes and padded back down the hallway. For some reason, he felt like crawling back under the covers and hiding from the reality of how much of a part Dylan Mitchell played in his daughter's life.

And yet… Nathan considered the lists he and Jade had made together. They were good for each other, he knew that. Dylan was a good young man, and he would be a good husband. It was the thought of giving his daughter up, or at least away, that made Nathan dig in his heels. As he settled back next to Kayla, he lifted the matter up in prayer, and put his worry away.

Later that morning, as he habitually did, he stopped by the dry-erase board that Dylan wrote on and read the inscription for the day.

First came a point from the resolution, they had come back around to the beginning: I do solemnly swear before God to take full responsibility for myself, my wife, and my children.

Then came the lyrics of a song, lyrics that gave him pause.

Mama you taught me to do the right things
So now you have to let your baby fly

You've given me everything that I will need
To make it through this crazy thing called life
And I know you watch me grow up and only want what's best for me
And I think I found the answer to your prayers
And he is good, so good
He treats your little girl like a real man should
He is good, so good, he makes promises he keeps
No he's never gonna leave
So don't you worry about me
Don't you worry about me
Mama there's no way you'll ever lose me
And giving me away is not goodbye
As you watch me walk down to my future, I hope tears of joy are in your eyes
'Cuz he is good, so good
He treats your little girl like a real man should
He is good, so good, he makes promises he keeps
No he's never gonna leave
So don't you worry about me
Don't you worry about me
And when I watch my little baby grow I'll only want what's best for her
And I hope she'll find the answer to my prayers
And that she'll say
He is good, so good
He treats your little girl like a real man should
He is good, so good, he makes promises he keeps
No he's never gonna leave
So don't you worry about me
Don't you worry about me.

Nathan's mind whirled. He knew that the song was a reference to David, having married Amanda only the day before, but still, at least in Nathan's mind, it could be applied to Dylan and Jade.

He turned and read the verse. Matthew 19:6.

Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

Nathan tried not to cringe, feeling a headache explode behind his eyes. He was tired of telling himself that it was puppy love. Whether that was true or not, he didn't know. Time would tell.


Here we go... This is the last story in my Dylan/Jade trilogy. Many thanks to Ariyah for all your help on this. Please review! Thanks!:)