F o r t y - O n e

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Avery's POV:

"Marry me."

"What?" I said with shock and confusion lacing my voice. "What do you mean?" I held my hand to my heart since it didn't look like it will be calming down soon.

He chuckled as if he found my reaction funny. "It means what it means, Avery. I want you to marry me." He said with a smile stretched across his face. He cupped my cheek while his eyes gleamed with happiness.

"Wha... Why? I mean...... Just why?... Wait!" Loudly gasping, I held my hand against my mouth. "Are you drunk?!" I said as I tilted his head towards mine with my hands to smell his breath as he started laughing.

His body dropped to the floor as he held his hand against his stomach while laughing and snickering loudly. He tried to say something but couldn't as another laugh tore from his throat. About another minute of laughing, he stood up still holding his stomach and wiped down his imaginary tears.

"So the first thing you say after I ask you to marry me is 'why' and 'Are you drunk'?" He said lightly chuckling. Blushing from embarrassment, I looked here and there. "Jeez, Avery. You really are stupid." He said with a fake sigh as he lightly pinched my nose.

"Oh ok I'll show how stupid it can be!" I said as I lightly glared at him and I tackled him to the ground. His laughter roared into the whole room as I tickled him on his stomach. "Ok. Ok, Avery. I got it. Stop it now. My stomach already hurts-" I grinned as I tickled him more.

His hands took hold of my wrists. I looked down to see that he had stopped laughing. His hazel eyes were serious. "You didn't answer me, Avery. So Yes or no?"

"I...I-" Just as I started, I was cut off as the door burst open and in came running Kaleb, running towards us while we sat up from the floor.

"Mommy, Grandpa called. He says he wants to talk to you." I stood up as he handed me the phone and then sat in Kyle's lap, who was still sitting on the floor while deeply staring at me. I ignored his gaze and got out of the room.


"Dad? Bree? Where are you guys?" I shouted, closing the door as I entered my home.

"Over here!" Dad replied from the Kitchen.

Dad had called me this afternoon to tell me that Bree was missing Kaleb and wanted to meet him. Obviously, Bree hadnt lived a day without Kaleb since he was born. She wasnt able to see him in the hospital and was probably worried about him too.

"Oh wow, Dad! It smells so nice. What are you making?" I said as I smiled towards my father who was standing beside the stove and plopped on one of the bar stools.

Dad wasn't the type to usually go into the Kitchen. When he was worried about something, he would go to make some food to release his tension.

Why do I feel like Bree isn't the only reason he called me over here?

"Bree is just getting ready. It would take a few minutes more. How's Kaleb?" He asked with a strained smile as he cleared his throat.

Smiling back at him, I replied. "Kaleb's fine. He misses you, Dad."

"I miss him too." He said as he got teary eyed. "When are you guys coming back?"

I sighed, "Dad, we just went there yesterday. I cant do that to him. He needs to know his father too."

"I know. I try to understand him because he must be going through with Kaleb what I had to go through with you. But I just cant....... It's far too dangerous for you guys to live with hi-" He said the last sentence under his breath but I still caught it.

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