My parents may have been happy for us, if he was not Vinnie’s brother. For them, he was not the man they wanted me to be with. Not that I was with him at this time, no matter my feelings for him, I had to keep them at bay.
He was staring at me, those eyes I knew so well. That tiny fleck of green in one of them, how I ever thought he was his brother. I was stupid, I knew he was the man I was in love with. Which did not matter, I was not here with him, because I loved him. I was here, because of Annie and our families. We needed some time alone, to decide to find out what we actually were. A family. A whole family?
“I wanted to tell you everything, but first I wanted us to be alone. And if I am honest, I only live here Fridays to Sunday, most of the time. I have a house back in our hometown, one I want you to live in.”
“You do, you have?”
“Yes, look no matter what we do, become, I want you two to move into the house.”
“If we decide that we want to be together, we can live there together.”
“This is a lot to take in, a lot, but I cannot take the house, I won’t let them think I only want this because of…”
“You thought I was cut off, would be, which I will be, I won’t inherit anything from my family. That is what they mean, the money I made I did that on my own, I know that this would not have been possible if they did not help or give me the money to start with. I paid that back once I made enough to do so, I owe them nothing. What I have is mine.”
“You want the truth?”
“I deserve that,” I said. Taking the glass of wine as he handed it to me.
“You do, you are right there.”
I indicated that he told me the truth.
“Fine, when I left you, my family continued to support me,” he began.
“I invested that money, which I doubled in six months. Another six months after that I doubled it again, which is when and how I got my first business. A year ago, I sold that, paid my parents back and brought the restaurant, which has been the biggest success. I am in the process of opening two more in other areas.”
My mouth fell open.
“So, you see, I don’t need their money. If my brother knew what my parents did he would not try the old our parents will cut me off thing.”
“No, because they have not given me money in years, unlike him, he still accepts his pay-outs.”
“Unless he is pretending to be me, that could explain it.”
“It could actually, but let’s not talk about this now, right now I need to talk about making up the last four years that I missed of Annie’s life and yours.”
“Okay, and how will you do that?”
“Well, first of all, the house is yours regardless, I already signed it over to you.”
“Why would you do that?”
“Because I knew you would not except it.”
“Well you are right, I can’t accept it.”
He told me I had no choice, because the house is hers, no matter what I said, because it was not all about me, it’s for Annie too. He continued.
“Besides the house is not some fancy place like your parents or mine, it’s like where you live now, but…”
“Yes, I don’t mean that in a bad way or to make you feel…” his words were tumbling as the tears I wanted to stop from falling fell. I knew he had not meant to make me feel that I failed as a parent, but he did. “I am so sorry that I did not mean to make you cry.”
“It’s okay, I get it I would want to make the life I had made for her better if I could. It is not like I did not try, I did, I am doing my best.”
“Yes, that is in all honestly what it is.”
“Okay, I know, its just I have done this all by myself for so long, it is hard to accept help from others.”
“I am not just someone else, I am her father, the man who loves you.”
“And yes, you are that, but you also walked out on us four years ago.”
“How long are you going to keep that over me.”
I shrugged, it was hard to say. Our conversation was shortened as Annie awoke and joined us, she was dancing. A dance she knew, she turned to Wyatt.
“Yes, third on the left.”
I showed her where to go, the bathroom was as impressive as the rest of the place. I settled her onto the toilet, she was unable to climb on it without her step. Washing her hands was another challenge, the sink too high. I had not had to do the balance on my knee thing is months, since the supermarket bathroom.
“Yes,” she said.
“Good, let’s join, Wyatt.”
We re-joined Wyatt and she did what I expected, climbed straight on his lap. She was loving this time with her father. Bonding with him.
“I am hungry, how do you fancy ordering takeout, in?” he suggested. “I think we should stay another night too.”
“Sure, I could eat again, you too, Annie? Staying the night might be the best option too?”
“Yes, to both,” I said, agreeing with him, not sure where I would sleep. I was sure there was another bed in that flat, if not I would sleep with Annie.
“Okay, I will make the call.”
Food eaten, Annie is tired again, she has had the busiest day of her little life. She ate until she could eat no more, her eyes were closing as she tried to eat more. I lifted her and carried her through to the bedroom again and laid her down. She was asleep before I laid her down.
I stand to leave, could I go back out there and be alone with him again, we have talked so much about everything. He was right about a lot of things, he had a lot to make up to me, I should let him. If I went back in there I knew I would be tempted to let him be with me, if I stayed in here, and hid was I being stubborn. Of course, I was.
I reached the door, as he opened it, asking if all was okay. I nodded, she was asleep, I said.
“You want a cup of tea?”
“Sure, I would love one,” he said as I closed the door and stepped forward, inches from his chest, our feet almost touched.
He leaned towards me, his lips were on mine, before I could stop him, push him away because I should, I did not want to. I could not even stop what was about to happen, no matter what I did, this moment was going to happen.
He led me into another room, removed my clothes, not once worrying about him seeing me naked, his clothes were on the floor beside mine. We were in the bed, not thinking, allowing him to do all things I had wanted him to do from the day I saw him again.
It was perfect, when he told me the words I knew he meant it, I knew he loved me as much as I loved him. I lay in his arms listening to his heartbeat.