~The Binding~

Chapter 27


Kevin pulled into the freshly plowed driveway. The entire day seemed very dreary and gray. With a sideways glance, he watched the metamorphosis take place with his wife. When she frowned, he could almost feel the air crackle with her anger.

The snow had been removed from the driveway; huge banks of white stuff was piled on either side. The lights burned in the house even though it was the middle of the afternoon. Heavy gray clouds filled the sky and cloaked the sun. The dark almost black puffs hung over the lake, that was less than a half a mile away.

Bron sat and surveyed her 'Queendom'. There was somebody in and about her home. She stared at the house; the rental they were sitting in idled in the driveway. "Did you or Mc call someone to clear the driveway? I normally did it myself."

Kevin was playing dumb. He knew Jake would be in the house and had been taking care of things for many weeks now. "I don't know anyone up here but your in-laws." Kevin almost raised his hand to protect himself.

Bron was jumping to conclusions pretty damn fast. Her eyes narrowed as a fierce and defensive force washed over her. "You didn't?"

"Oh no, no, no…. I'm not that stupid." Kevin paused as she stared at the French doors.
"I think that they are the only thing we agree on sometimes…."

There had to be at least a foot and half of snow on the ground. The storm clouds were fascinating to him. They were dark and just hung in the air, forming a wall. The storm brewing in the air now almost matched the woman sitting next to him. Except when she was storming the entire world around her knew it.

After the front door opened, the ear-piercing scream from Kaylin was enough to make him wince. When Bron followed up with a similar noise and Cooper began to cry, he could feel a dull throb begin at his temples. Kevin watched as Kaylin almost fell out of the truck. Bron almost tripped trying to get out of the rented SUV to get to the person waiting for them at the door.

"UNCLE JAKE! UNCLE JAKE!" Kaylin was trying to jump up on him, but she couldn't since he already had Bron in a bear hug.

Turning to the back seat, he looked at Cooper who by now was down to a sniffle since the noise had stopped. "I guess we know where we rate in their books." Kevin climbed out of his truck and opened the passenger door, he removed the car seat from it's base and headed inside. "This should be interesting; your mother is uptight and pissy already."

Stomping his boots on the porch, Kevin turned his head when he heard thunder. "I wonder if that is the lake effect they are always talking about?"

A hand held the screen door open for him. Obviously, he wasn't surprised to find Jake hugging both Bron and Kaylin.

"I want to hold the baby," Jake grumped for them to get down as he looked at Cooper.

Kevin shook his head and pulled the infant seat out of reach. "What? No hug for me?"

Jake eyed him, wrapped his arms around Kevin and lifted him off the ground. He squeezed with all his might.

Kevin tried to fight back, it was useless, "I can't breath," Kevin wheezed out as Bron laughed at him.

"Serves you right Pop Star," Jake whispered.

Once out of harms way, Kevin caught his breath and watched Bron. She was already in the kitchen and opening cupboard doors. "Thank you Jake."

"No problem," Jake helped Kevin with the luggage from the truck.

Bron handed Kaylin a rag and a bottle of beeswax. "Go clean your room."

"I just got here," Kaylin rolled her eyes much like Kevin did.

Bron smiled, she found the small mannerisms that Kaylin had picked up from dear old Dad amazing.

Jake set the last suitcase down, "Bron, I've cleaned. I've been here a couple of … days now."

Bron's eyes fell on Jake quickly.

Kevin patted him on the back, "Nice job. Come on Bounce; let's go get your stuff put away." Kevin opened the French door that led to the living room and upstairs.

"But Dad," Kaylin whined.

Kaylin's whine was met with Kevin's finger pointing to the upstairs.

"It's not fair, I want my own life. Everyone tells me what to do."

Kevin closed his eyes as he heard Bron yell from the kitchen. "I don't think that is allowed in this family!"

Grabbing a suitcase, Kevin headed up behind Kaylin. Jake was taking over Andrew's old room. Kaylin had her own room and Cooper had the guest bedroom. Kevin liked the idea, the house was full, there was no more room left, nobody could show up or crash here.

Kevin helped Kaylin settle in and then Cooper. Kevin was going to set their bedroom straight next. The baby was wound up, since he had napped on the plane. He babbled and cooed as he lay in the middle of their Bed. Kevin opened the door on the right side of the closet. Looking in, it was devoid of anything. Walking to the other side, he opened the other door, it was chucked full of clothing. "I guess I know which side is mine," he grumbled as he saw sweaters even stacked on the floor. The closet was going to burst. "It kind of looks likes Uncle Aje's room when we travel," Kevin laughed as Cooper babbled back at him.

Kevin hung up the four suits he had brought with him. He hung Bron's clothes that she had brought in his side, since he didn't feel like dealing with the other side. "We're going to do a few things to this place as long as we aren't in court Coop." Turning he looked at his son, who smiled back at him. "I'm going to get some clothes to keep here." Kevin slid the drawer open on the tall dresser; it was empty as well. "Your Mom is having a hard time and so am I. I think we are both in a panic but I can't tell her that I'm scared because she is relying on me to keep it together for her. I just don't want anything to happen to any of us."

Cooper made noises back at his Dad.

Kevin didn't bother to look to see what caused the baby to babble so suddenly. Folding some shirts, he set them in the drawer. He practically broke one drawer on Bron's dresser trying to open it. "Forget it, she can do it." Kevin scooped Cooper up and wondered as he walked downstairs what was going on. The smell hit him the face like a balled up fist. "Not that shit again."

Bron laughed, "We like hot dogs."

"It's not the hotdogs that are offending, it's the sauerkraut." Kevin propped the baby up in his infant seat.

Bron walked towards her son with a bowl and a spoon. Kevin snagged her hand away as she began to head for Cooper's mouth. "What are you doing?"

"Feeding him," Bron pulled her arm away. "Cereal."

"He's not supposed to have that yet," Kevin grabbed for her arm.

Bron huffed, "How many babies have you raised?"

Kevin wasn't going to answer the question, "You only raised one."

"That's right, one. Now this kid is ready for cereal; he's knocking the bottles back faster than we can keep them full."

Kevin left the room and Bron tossed her arms in the air. "For Christ sakes he's getting the book."

Jake laughed, "He still has that thing?"

"Oh and then some. Suzie was pissed at me one day last week so she bought Kevin a new book, What To Expect The First Year."

Jake doubled over, "Man, she must have been really pissed at you."

Kevin walked in the room with both books. The first one he had received was beat to hell. "See, right here, chapter 7, baby's fourth month. The Introduction of Solids."

"Will you please just trust me this one time," Bron had already been testing the waters on this one. The reflex was there. She gave Cooper a tiny bit on a spoon. He tasted, his face puckered at the unnatural way of being fed. Bron waited, when she saw the lips working similar to a fish, she laughed. "You're an early kid. You're going to do everything early, I can tell." Bron offered one more spoon full; she didn't want to over do it. When she stopped, the baby cried. "Well now, one more and that is it."

"You can't do that," Kevin stood over Bron.

"I just did Kevin, he's fine." Bron looked at her husband who wasn't too happy with her. "Kevin, each kid is different. Kaylin was an earlier eater too. She sat up earlier, rolled earlier, she did everything earlier."

Kevin still didn't like the idea, he looked at the telephone.

"You don't need to call Gabe either. I'm telling you this is a gift. It's a sign of intelligence." Okay, she lied. It would take him a week to read the book to figure that out. "He'll sleep better too."

Kevin quietly went to the refrigerator and grabbed some cold cuts. There was no way he was eating what they were eating. Making his sandwich, he joined them at the table. "You know what you are doing," he took a huge bite out of his sandwich.

Kaylin was diving into the mashed potatoes and completely happy. Jake was there, but Andrew wasn't. Bron was going to check on him later. She saw the quietness settle over Kevin. "If it will make you feel better, I'll call Gabe and confess. He'll say it's fine and when you don't believe him, then you can call your Mom. Okay?"

"Okay," Kevin grinned as he ate his sandwich, she knew that was exactly what he was going to do anyway.

"Dinner is great tonight Mom. Last night sucked," Kaylin poured more ketchup than she needed on her plate until her mother pulled the bottle away.

"Yeah, last night was the pits. They were trying to make me feel better. It just didn't work out like they thought it would."

"What happened?" Jake went for seconds on his plate.

Kevin grabbed a plate and took some potatoes before they were all gone. Dropping a chunk of butter on the pile, he began to play with his food. Swirling his butter as he spoke, "Mom and everyone came over. It was supposed to be a cheer up party to try and get Bron to relax and not be so stressed."

Kaylin looked at Uncle Jake, "It was kind of like Dad's funeral."

Kevin choked on his potatoes.

"No shit," Bron started to laugh for the first time in days. "I think it was my funeral they were celebrating."

"Bronwyn!" Kevin didn't like the idea.

"Well damn Kev. Your Mother placed a double layer Devil's food cake in my face covered with chocolate frosting."

"She was trying to make you feel better, she knows you like chocolate cake."

"The whole cake?" Bron laughed back him.

Kevin had to admit, his family was over-zealous last night, and the evening had backfired royally on all of them. "They tried."

"I know," Bron was still laughing. "It was awful Jake. They all sat around with this dull look in their eyes. It was weird. I couldn't even get Tim to smile and I told my best preacher joke."

It was Kevin's turned to laugh, "Suzie fixed it."

Bron and Kaylin began laughing with tears running down their faces.

"I'm afraid to ask," Jake looked at all of them laughing like idiots.

Kevin paused his spoon in mid-air, "She went upstairs and borrowed one of the silk flower arrangements from one of the bedrooms. When she came down she handed it to my Mother with a card in it."

Bron was holding the palms of her hands to her face as she tried to talk. "Suzie must of a wrote a note in the bedroom, she told Anne to read it out loud and she did."

Kevin would never forget those words and he would forever be indebted for bringing Bron out of her funk. It was sick but it worked. "The card read, 'I'm so sorry over the loss of you daughter-in-law. I'm sure in time you will heal and I won't get anymore cow stuff for my kitchen. LIGHTEN UP!" Kevin laughed, "Mom was so pissed. I haven't seen her that mad in a long time."

Bron grabbed her cell, "Hey sister, we're talking about you. Are your ears burning?"

Bron cleared plates and talked on the telephone. Kaylin took off to watch television in the living room. Cooper nodded off in his seat.

"So did you get the lecture and the Q & A yet?" Kevin watched his wife in the kitchen.

"Just the lecture," Jake stretched in the chair. "The rest will come tomorrow. Sorry your dinner sucked last night."

"Yeah, well they tried." Kevin switched seats so he could watch Bron move around in the kitchen. "She is totally losing it, but in the same token, she's it holding together. The sooner they start the better."

"I hear ya," Jake watched too.

"Any news on you know who?" Kevin grabbed a blanket from the diaper bag and covered Cooper up.

"Not yet, but if the press gets wind, then he'll be out. I should warn you, if the press doesn't get wind of it, Mc will make sure they do." Jake flipped through the baby book that Kevin had brought with him.

"I really wish he wouldn't," Kevin's jaw tightened a little.

"We all wish he wouldn't. He'll have feds on her that we won't even know about." Jake was insinuating that he knew as much as Kevin without saying so directly. "Have you got any ideas to keep her busy?"

Kevin snorted and wore a tell-tale grin.

"Besides that, you can't do that all day." Jake laughed

"Sure I can," Kevin laughed even harder.

"You're staring to believe too much of that shit she writes about you," Jake read down the page briefly.

"Well she can write for one thing. I thought of a few other possibilities. One of them is sure thing, she needs to see an eye doctor and get some glasses. She won't admit it but she can barely read anything let alone write."

"Suzie is coming up the day after tomorrow," Bron chirped as she unbuckled the sleeping baby.

Kevin looked at his watch, "You just left her five hours ago. You just talked to her not more than a minute ago. You're not conjoined twins."

"I know," Bron grabbed the blanket and tossed it over her shoulder. Carefully she pulled Cooper up to her. "I forgot a few things."

Kevin shook his head, he didn't want this. There was no more room in this house, "She could fax, mail, or ship things to you."

"I forgot my laptop." Bron was eyeing him up, he was looking for the argument as she left the room.

Jake started with a low chuckle as Kevin let out an exasperated breath. "Well, I can see Suzie will be a frequent visitor because there is no way in hell that was left behind by accident."

Kevin reached over to the counter and grabbed his cell phone. He called, she answered. "Explain please?"

"Aww she's fine, I think." Suzie was eating as she spoke to Kevin.

Kevin closed one eye, "Laptop?"

"Fully intentional, I'm sure of it." Suzie flipped the cucumber out of her salad. "I think she wants to show me around town a little. Make me familiar with the place."

"Oh yeah right and you are as full of shit as she is," Kevin groaned as Suzie laughed and hung up on him.

Bron tucked Cooper in for the night. After watching a movie with Bounce, she put her to bed as well. Kevin and Jake seemed to be engrossed in man talk or the trial of which Bron didn't want to listen. She pulled the blankets back on her own bed and crawled in. It was early, only ten, but she felt burned out. Turning the light off, she closed her eyes. The minute the lights were out, her mind began to drum to a different beat. She had heard what Kevin had said earlier about being scared. Finally she drifted off until the bed moved, her eyes flew open from a dead sleep so quickly Kevin jumped.

"Relax darlin', it's just me," Kevin stroked her hair and watched her close her eyes. "Oh this is not going to be pretty, I can see that," he whispered quietly.






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The characters and events portrayed are fictitious.
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