5 year old Jamie had been told he was going to be staying with grandpa Henry and grandma Rose for a few days. While the rest of the family went to help look after Mary's sister, 15 year old Danny and 14 year old Erin were going to help around the house while 10 year old Joe was going to keep their 9 and 7 year old cousins out of the way. When Jamie had been told this he was not happy, he loved his grandpa and grandma but he didn't want to go anywhere without the rest of his family. This would be the first time he stayed away from his family and home, so it was understandable that he was upset.
Frank and Mary felt sorry for Jamie, Jamie's siblings had spent their fist night away from home at the same age as Jamie, but they had gone to a friend's house, so they had chosen to go away for the night. Jamie on the other hand had been told he had to spend not one, but three nights away from home.
"But I don't wanna go!" cried Jamie as he hid under his bed hoping Danny and Joe wouldn't be able to reach him.
"Sorry Jamie but you have to" replied Joe as he tried to grab Jamie's leg.
"Come on Jamie! Just get out from under the bed!" complained Danny,
"No!" howled Jamie, as he shook off Danny's hand around his ankle.
"Jamie!" said Danny sharply, he didn't like seeing Jamie this upset if it was up to him he wouldn't be putting Jamie through this but he could see why his parents were sending Jamie to their grandparents.
"Come on Jamie we're not gonna abandon you there" comforted Joe,
"Your gonna abandon me!" cried Jamie,
"Nonono Jamie we're not! We're gonna come back for you in four days" hastily replied Joe,
"Why can't I come?" asked Jamie,
"Because mom and dad don't want you getting in the way!" replied Danny,
"I don't get in the way do I?"
"You sure do" said Danny fondly, he didn't intended for the comment to be mean, it was just a joke in the family that Jamie was very skilled in getting under everyone's feet.
But like everything Danny said Jamie took the comment seriously and he stopped struggling, Joe grabbed Jamie's leg and pulled him from under the bed. Danny took his backpack and the three brothers made their way down the street towards their grandparent's house which was two blocks away.
Danny was walking ahead of his younger brothers and Joe had hold of one one Jamie's hands, Jamie walked with his head down feeling betrayed by his brothers for making him stay away from home. Henry was stood at the living room window looking out for his grandsons, when he saw them he made his way out of the house.
"Hey grandpa!" replied Joe and Danny, but Jamie remained silent.
Henry looked at Jamie in concern, "what's wrong?"
Joe looked first at Jamie and then at Henry and replied "he didn't want to come because he wanted to stay home"
"Of course he did" said Henry as he bent down in front of Jamie, he looked at his youngest grandchild in sympathy. Jams had kept his head down not once looking up at him. Henry lifted Jamie's head gently and said "your being very brave Jamie"
"Really?" murmured Jamie, he didn't feel brave.
"You sure are, when Danny spent his first night away from home he cried"
"Hey!" protested Danny,
Jamie smiled, "that's better" commented Henry, Henry then took Jamie's backpack from Danny hooking it over one shoulder he then held a hand out for Jamie and Jamie let go of Joe's hand and grabbed Henry's. Henry then picked Jamie up knowing Jamie liked being held close when he was upset.
"You boys had better get back otherwise your mom and dad will be wondering where you've gotten to" said Henry, Joe and Danny nodded.
"Bye Jamie" they said but Jamie just wrapped his arms tighter around Henry and hid his face in Henry's neck. Joe and Danny then turned and left knowing grandpa would make Jamie feel better.
That evening after Rose and Henry had put Jamie to bed Henry suddenly had the urge to check on Jamie. He crept into the room Jamie was staying in and heard the distinct sounds of someone trying to stop crying. Jamie had hid himself under the covers in the hope no one would hear him, Henry pulled the covers back and sat next to Jamie.
"Now what's this?" questioned Henry softly,
"Nothing grandpa" sniffled Jamie,
"Doesn't look like nothing" said Henry as he wiped away the tears on Jamie's face.
"I was trying not to cry grandpa! I was trying to brave!"
"Hey it's ok to be sad-"
"But you said I was brave and I hadn't cried then"
"And you still are being brave, it's ok to be upset when something new happens and you don't like it. Now how about I tell you a story?"
"Yes please grandpa!" Jamie then snuggled up against Henry.
Twenty minutes later Jamie was fast asleep and Henry left the room. When he sat next to Rose on the couch she smiled and said "you know Jamie reminds me of you"
"Really? How?" asked Henry,
"He puts on a front when he's upset but when he thinks no one is around he lets all his emotions out"
"I do that?"
"Yes you goof you do"
"Well it looks like Jamie is gonna be a cop then" smiled Henry,
"I wouldn't let Mary hear you say that, she's hoping the boys aren't going to follow you and Frank into the force"
"Just you wait I wouldn't mind betting all three of them become cops at some point" chuckled Henry.
~four days later~
"Jamie! Danny and Joe are here!" called Henry, Jamie came from the backyard and hugged both his brothers. Henry went back out to the backyard to let the brothers have a private moment as he guessed what was going to happen.
"Did you have fun Jamie?" asked Joe,
"Yeah! Grandpa told me loads of stories and guess what? He even took me to the park!"
"You'd think he'd never seen a park before" muttered Danny, he ignored the glare from Joe.
"Right Jamie get your stuff and let's go home" said Joe,
"What?" asked Jamie,
"We're here to take you home kid" replied Danny,
Jamie's eyes went wide, he spun on his heels and ran up the stairs shouting "I don't wanna go!"
"Not again" groaned Danny as he and Joe followed Jamie up the stairs.
Fifteen minutes later Joe came downstairs carrying Jamie's backpack, followed by Danny who had a kicking and screaming Jamie over one shoulder.
"Jamie stop screaming! We thought you would want to come home!" Danny said loudly,
"I wanna stay with grandpa because he won't abandon me!"
"We came back for you just like we said we would!"
"GRANDPA!" screeched Jamie,
Henry jogged over to the foot of the stairs and exclaimed "what's going on?"
"Jamie doesn't want to leave" said Joe, Henry sighed this is what he had guessed would happen.
"Jamie" said Henry, Jamie stopped kicking and screaming, Danny threw Henry a thankful look he was getting a headache from all Jamie's screaming.
Henry walked around to Danny's back to he could look Jamie in the eye, "now why don't you want to go home?"
"Everyone back home made me leave for a few days when I didn't want to, and you and grandma always stick up for me" murmured Jamie,
Henry smiled, "and we always will stick up for you, but you have to go home otherwise your mom and dad would be sad. And you wouldn't want them to be sad would you?"
"No. Ok grandpa I'll go home"
"That's a good boy"
"Danny put me down!"
"Gladly" muttered Danny as he rubbed his now sore shoulder.
On their way out of the house Jamie waved goodbye to Henry and walked between his brothers on their way home.
Two months later when Frank and Mary were going away for the weekend Jamie had been excited to learn he would be spending the weekend at grandpa Henry's. That day Jamie hadn't gotten out of the house fast enough and had ran ahead of his siblings (who were also going to be staying at grandpa's with him) and they were trying to catch up to him to make sure he didn't get hurt. Henry had come to the front door to meet them and Jamie had launched himself at Henry exclaiming "I'm back grandpa!"
Henry had laughed saying "yes I can see that".