Chapter 13: Epilogue
A loud cry interrupted my thoughts. I looked down at the photo album on my lap and sighed deeply. I pushed it off my lap and proceeded to the nursery where my eight month old son had been sleeping. His cries grew louder as I approached the crib. I looked down at him and smiled as I looked at his features. His blue-green eyes were tearful as he vied for my attention, his face red as he forced his voice box to go as loud as it could as he called me to him. He settled down as soon as my hands took hold of his small body.
“Hey Ton-ton,” I cooed to Anthony. “Are you hungry baby?” I asked. Then my three-year-old son Craig came running into the room with his five-year-old sister Rosalie hot on his heels.
“What’s wrong mommy?” Craig asked, unusually eloquent for a three-year-old, as he tried to peer at his baby brother.
“It’s alright,” I said. “Ton-ton’s just hungry.” I assured both of them as Rosalie stroked Anthony’s head gently.
“Come on, let’s go downstairs. Daddy’s going to be home soon.” I said. Then we heard a shout from the first floor of the house.
“I’m home!” Troy’s voice echoed against the walls of the house.
“Daddy!” Craig and Rose shouted simultaneously before dashing down the stairs to meet their dad.
“Let’s go greet your daddy, Ton-ton,” I whispered to Anthony as I left the room. I walked into the living room to find Rose taking her father’s brief case and bringing it into his office while Craig took hold of his father’s shoes and stowed them away in the closet.
I walked over to him with our son in cradled in my arms.
“Hey honey,” I greeted when I reached him. “How was your day?” I asked.
“Tiring,” was his curt reply. He wrapped his arms around both Anthony and I in a gentle embrace. “But I’m sure it’s nothing you can’t handle.” He said; his voice dropping to a husky whisper while his blue eyes stared right into my chocolate orbs. I chuckled at his innuendo but leaned in for a kiss.
He responded eagerly and wouldn’t have stopped had Anthony not interrupted us by giggling in my arms while his siblings made gagging noises behind us. I smiled at him as he pulled back and turned his attention to the young infant in my arms.
“Hey Ton-ton,” he cooed. “How’s my baby?” he asked, taking the child from me.
“I’ll go make dinner,” I said. He nodded in reply as he walked over to the sofa with Anthony in his arms and Craig and Rosalie following him.
I went to the kitchen and started preparing dinner, getting lost in my thoughts as I did so. As a twenty year old mother of three children and a medical student, it was a feat in itself to be able to keep house, keep track of the children while studying to become a neurosurgeon yet I couldn’t help but think about the perfection of my life. Five years before, I’d thought that having Rosalie was a burden to my teenage life but Troy’s abrupt return
changed that way of thinking.
When everyone had accepted him back and gave him a second chance, Troy and I moved to Rio where we currently live. In my third year in university I once again became pregnant and it proved to be more of a struggle than when I was merely in school. Troy had then experienced first-hand how it was like to live with a pregnant woman. It had been difficult but with the constant and unwavering support of both our families, we got by. My father died in the same year we moved. He had hidden his sickness from everyone and it was too late when we found out about it.
My thoughts were once again thwarted but this time by a pair of strong arms that wrapped themselves around my waist. I let go of the knife that I had been using to cut up the vegetables and leaned into my husband’s chest.
“I still don’t know how you do it,” he stated, his deep voice rumbling in his chest.
“Do what?” I asked.
“Cook without paying attention to the actual food,” he replied with a chuckle. I chuckled softly in return.
“It’s a secret you may never find out,” I joked. “Where are the kids?”
“Rose and Craig are in the playroom and Ton-ton’s sleeping in his room,” he replied.
“Dinner will be ready in a few minutes,” I said.
“I’ll call them then,” he whispered. His arms tightened around me as he kissed the top of my head. His lips then trailed lower, his kisses reaching my ear. He nibbled on my earlobe; I whimpered with desire his answering chuckle rumbling in his chest.
“Stop that,” I scolded.
“Sorry,” he replied but it was certain he wasn’t. He walked away from me but I called him back.
“Troy?” I called. He turned back to me eyebrows raised in question.
“You’re paying for that later,” I said with a sensual smile, my voice husky with desire. He grinned at me, gave me a wink then left to fetch the children.
I stroked Troy’s hair as he lay on top of me breathing hard.
“How is it that you are still having the same effect on me?” he asked. I merely chuckled at his question. “What’s so funny?”
“It’s nothing,” I replied. He rolled off of me then pulled me to his side. I sighed comfortably against his chest, breathing in his musky scent. “By the way love, I forgot to tell you something.” I mumbled sleepily.
“What is it honey?”
“I’ll be graduating at the top of my class,” I answered.
“That’s great!” he exclaimed.
“Yes, I know,” I said. “Now, I just want to go to sleep,” I said before I drifted off, dreaming about our future together as husband and wife ‘til death do us part.