A chirping tweet goes off in Paul’s pocket, and he swears while pulling out his phone. “This thing has been blowing up today. Oh, good, it’s just Donna.” As soon as his divorce was finalized, Lia and I set her father up on a date with the finance secretary. While it was still too early in his rebound phase for them to settle down, they had been going out on dates regularly. “Donna wrote that Lia has closed herself in the bedroom, refusing to come out or let them in. She wants to know if you can go do something?”

Paul is still talking behind me as I exit the room and sprint down the hall for the stairs. Any excuse to see Lia is a good one, but if she needs me there isn’t a force that can stop me. I take the steps two at a time and see Tasha and Donna leaning against my bedroom door. Their voices are soft and cajoling, the way one might talk to a wounded animal instead of a pregnant bride.

“What’s wrong?” I ask them. Tasha is in her bathrobe cinched tight at the waist, though her stage of pregnancy has the edges just barely meeting over her stomach. “The baby?”

Tasha holds her hands up, stopping me in my tracks. “She’s just having an emotional moment. You know pregnancy and sh-tuff. Yeah, stuff.” Tasha checks her watch and sighs. “I need to get dressed, so you go deal with my step-mom.” She stands on tiptoe to kiss my cheek. “Do not mess up her hair, Dad. The stylist spent like an hour getting it just right.”

“I would never!” I protest.

She arches an eyebrow and looks at me, hands on hips. “I think there have been exactly three days the two of you haven’t been at each other when you’ve both been home. One of those involved Lia going to the hospital for IV fluids because of dehydration. Spare me the ‘I would never’ routine.” Tasha turns and begins walking down the hallway toward her bedroom. “Chris and I can hear you guys every night!”

Chris is outside with the wedding planner, trying to be useful. My son-in-law chose not to be in the wedding despite our invitation, but he is going to be in attendance. He feels uncomfortable around me even after living in my home for four months. I have been nice to him for Tasha and the baby’s sake, but it is difficult knowing my baby girl is married and down the hall. I try not to think of what they’re doing… It must be even more awkward for her to know that Lia and I are together.

I offered to pay for a wedding for them or to have them share our day, but they had declined. Tasha and Chris wanted a small service at the courthouse followed by a reception at the bowling alley where they’d had their first date. Tasha and Lia were barely showing at that point, and now both appear ready to go into labor at any moment.

“Paul is downstairs,” I tell Donna. “Second door on the left when you go down the stairs behind me. The room just beyond the kitchen.” Taking my hint, she leaves me to try and help Lia. I knock on the door. “Honey, it’s me. Just me.”

I listen as there are several sounds of struggling and frustrated tears. Turning the door, it doesn’t open; Lia has locked it. “Can I come in, Lia? Please let me in. It’s my bedroom, too,” I remind her.

A minute passes, and when no footsteps near the door, I decide to take matters into my own hands. She may be having my baby and about to become my wife, and I may have made sure she knew this is as much her home as mine, but I will not be locked out of my bedroom without reason. I reach up to the top of the door frame and fumble for the small metal key. Opening the door slowly, I peer into my bedroom.

Lia is on the bed, struggling with what looks like an inverted cupcake of fluff. She doesn’t answer right away when I ask what’s wrong, continuing to wriggle. “I can’t get it up!” she wails at last. Lia rolls side to side, pulling on the band of fabric as she tries to get it under her dress. “I was stupid and took off the hoop skirt so I could pee, thinking I could get it up again without help.”

Lia starts crying, laughing as she does so. “Stupid hormones! I’m fine, really. Just embarrassed.”

I close and relock the door behind me. “Let me help you, Lia.” Taking my bride-to-be in my arms, I lift her to her feet and help her get the waistband up in place, then smooth down her skirt. Lia looks like a goddess. The bodice is snug across her chest, and then it flares out into a bell shape with small blue roses embroidered at the waist. The midnight blue panel matching the shade of my tux is an accent over her stomach and down to her feet with the white coming in on either side. It does not hide the beautiful curve where our baby is growing, but it also doesn’t make it the centerpiece of the look. Her dress is exactly what she designed.

readonlinefreebook.com Copyright 2016 - 2024