Lexie sat watching Richie and Romeo playing around on Guitar Hero.
"Better watch it Richie, he's getting ahead." Lexie laughed. "Go Romey Go."
Just them her cell rang twice and stopped, then rang again. She got up and headed out of the room.
"Hey, Are you close?" She asked him.
"Yeah, pulling into the parking garage now. We'll be up in a few minutes." Jon pulled into his space and turned off the car. "I see Richie is still here."
"Yeah, He and Romeo are playing Guitar Hero and he's losing, you sure you two aren't related to him." she laughed,
"Hey I let Romey win." He laughed.
"See I told you," Jesse whispered to his sister.
"She's taking care of Romeo, she's just a sitter." Stephanie whispered back.
"Hey I forgot to ask, did you get any writing done while you were here?" He got out of the SUV and helped Jake get his suitcase out of the back. "You three haven't eaten lunch yet have you? We can go get pizza," Jon looked at his other three to see if they agreed about the pizza. "Or maybe Chinese?" Jake looked up and smiled.
"You can ask them when you get in here." She looked up at Richie standing in the doorway.
"That Jon?" Richie asked.
Lexie nodded and held out the phone to Richie.
"Hey bro, I've been taking care of your little writer. Man you were right, very inspiring." He laughed.
Jon cleared his throat, the image that came to his mind was not what he wanted to think about.
"Yeah, listen, we haven't eaten since breakfast, we're on our way up." He steered his kids across the street
"Yeah I heard, we had pizza last night, but you know the kid he'll eat it again." He smiled down at Lexie.
"Gonna lose ya we're getting in the elevator, be there soon." He closed off the call and made sure they were all in when he put his key into his lock and the doors shut.
"He's on the way up." Richie handed her back the phone and smiled.
They walked back into the game room to find Snowball and Romeo sitting on the sofa.
"It's almost time for Snowball and I to head home Romey. Your Dad and your brothers and sister are on the way up. You want to help me get Snow's stuff in her carry bag?" Lexie squatted down to eye level with him.
"I don't want you and Snowball to go home. I like having Snowball and you here, daddy won't like it that you went home." he popped out his bottom lip.
"We're just down the street Romey, you know you can come and visit us anytime your dad will call and I'll meet you or he can bring you down." She reached out and tapped his lip. "Now get a smile on your face, it won't be long now." She heard the door downstairs open.
"We're here." Jon called out.
Snowball jumped out of Romeo's arms and ran barking down the the stairs to great Jon.
"Hey Snow girl, where's is everyone?" He picked up the jumping dog and turned to the kids.
"Daddy, that's a dog, when did you get a dog?" Stephanie said reaching out to the little dog.
Jakey looked up at the dog and smiled. Jon took a step back, it was the first time Jake had smiled since they arrived at the hotel.
"Pretty puppy." he whispered and rubbed Snowballs foot.
Romey came running down the steps.
"Hey slow down partner." Jon put Snowball down on the floor and caught Romeo before he fell.
"Snowball is my puppy." Romeo said looking up at Jon.
"No Romey, Snowball is Lexie's puppy." Jon told him, "She just comes to visit you and me." he said ruffling Romeo's head.
"But I don't want it to just be a visit." He sniffed, "I want them to stay."
"I do too, but that's gonna be up to Lexie and Snowball, Romey." he stood up and looked up at Lexie who was coming down the steps with Richie.
"Uncle Mookie." Stephanie ran over to Richie.
"Hey Princess, Heard you had a terrible time." Richie rubbed her back.
"Oh it was terrible." She looked up at Richie. "Who is this and why is she here." She whispered in his ear.
"She's a great lady and you need to get to know her." he whispered back. "She makes your dad happy and that's the important part."
Stephanie stepped back and looked over at Lexie and held out her hand.
"Hi, I'm Stephanie, I'm," Stephanie started to say,
Lexie took her hand and gave it a small shake and a squeeze.
"I know who you are, Your dad has told me all about you kids." Lexie said with a smile. "Romeo has been looking forward to you all getting here today."
"Listen, let's get the bags upstairs and go grab a bite to eat. I don't know about anyone else but I am about to starve." Jon sheppard the kids upstairs.
Richie watched Lexie, going over he put his arm around her shoulders.
"Give'em time, they'll love you as much as Jon does." He told her giving her a little squeeze.
"I told him they needed time to adjust, they've been through a lot and don't need a new person dropped on them." She nudged Richie in the ribs.
"Hey Dean, get your hands off my woman." Jon laughed as he came back down stairs.
"Hey didn't see no tag on her saying she belonged to anyone, Frank." Richie retorted.
"Hey I ain't property to be fought over." Lexie joined in. Looking up she saw the look on the two older Bongiovi children.
"Listen I need to get home and call my editor, I have a deadline looming." She stepped away from Richie and rubbed her palms on her jeans. "Come one Snow time for us to head home."
"No, don't want Snowball to go home daddy." Romeo's lower lip trembled.
"Romey, you can come and visit us anytime you want to. But I have to work sweetie." She bent down and picked up Snowball and turned to pick up her bag and headed for the door.
Jon caught up to her at the door.
"Why don't you stay and go eat with us." He asked putting his hand on her shoulder to stop her.
"Jon, you have two kids that right now don't want to share you with a woman they had no idea existed until you sprung her on them." She whispered. "Give them time, bring them to visit when you bring Romeo. Let them warm up to us being an us." They walked out to the elevator.
"So we are an us?" he smiled.
"If you have to ask," She let the statement hang in the space between them.
Jon leaned in his lips covering hers. As they broke apart Lexie smiled.
"Does that answer your question?" Jon whispered.
"Daddy, Romeo has locked himself in his bedroom and is crying his eyes out." Stephanie called out.
"Go to him Jon, tell him he can come down anytime." Lexie sighed. I knew this was going to happen.
"Be right there Princess." he gave Lexie one more quick kiss then watched her get on the elevator. Giving her a little wave as the door closed.
"Dad...dee" came the call from the house, Jon rolled his eyes and headed into the kayos that was his life.