Jon stood there and looked at Lexie standing there.
“Surprise” Lexie smiled. “Stephanie called me and invited me up.” She told him. Jesse was taking her suitcase into his fathers room.
Jon looked between Stephanie's, look daddy what I did, shit eating grin to Lexie's we got to talk smile that wasn't quiet making her eyes sparkle.
Oh shit what am I in for now
“Lex, “ he walked over and gave her a kiss.
“Jon,” She giggled this was so strange with his kids standing there watching.
Jesse made a quick exit to store her suitcase and then to his room. Stephanie giggled and disappeared into her room when she got a text signal on her phone.
“Well that cleared the room.” Jon laughed. He walked Lexie into the bedroom they would be sharing.
“I wanted to call you and let you know I was coming, but Stephanie wanted to surprise you.” She tossed her bag on the bench at the end of the bed.
“I'm glad you and Snow are here.” Jon flopped down on the bed and watched her unpack. “Is that all you bought?” He asked watching her hang up clothes and pull out drawers and loaded them.
“Jon there is a washer and a dryer.” She tossed pajamas at him.
“What are these?” He laughed holding.
“What I am going to be wearing to bed with the kids a few feet away.” She told him, standing there with her hand on her hip giving him the eye.
“Ah Lex” Jon gave her his little boy pout,
“Ah Jon.” She rolled her eyes at him.
“My boys know if the door is closed they knock.” He told her tossing the Pj's back to her.
“For right now Jon, I will ware the pajamas.” She tossed them back on the other pillow. “I'm going to check on Snow and put her stuff out.” She kicked off her shoes and headed back down to the kitchen, grabbing her laptop bag as she went.
“You're editor know where you are?” Jon followed her out the bedroom and then went over to open the door to Romeo and Jake's room. Light fell across the bed showing Snowball curled between the boys. He would have to take the bunk beds a part so Snow could sleep with both boys. She couldn't climb up to where Jake was sleeping.
Lexie looked over his shoulder and smiled.
“She missed her buddy.” She whispered as he pulled the door to, but left it cracked if she needed to get out,
“Yes, my editor knows where I am. I have a deadline.” She told him as she followed him down to the kitchen.
Jon took out two goblets and a bottle of wine.
“Who's been cooking since you got here?” She looked in the fridge. She had brought up some of the stuff from her fridge and added it to the stuff he already had.
“Well, cereal and fruit for breakfast and Salad and sandwiches and soup.” he told her.
“So, I need to go shopping tomorrow for real food.” She took the glass of wine he offered.
“You are not here to feed us.” he drew her out to the family room. “Your editor will have my ass.”
They sat cuddled on the sofa. The lights were low and the wine was relaxing her. Then a door opened upstairs and a kid came downstairs. Jon felt Lexie move but he pulled her back.
“Don't mind me” Jesse went into the kitchen to raid the fridge.
“Lexie is not here to cook for us.” Jon said out loud.
“Jon.” Lexie smacked his thigh.
“Ouch Lex” Jon rubbed his injured thigh.
Jesse laughed an came out of the kitchen eating an apple and had a sandwich in his hand.
“Dad, we're used to eating your food now, good healthy food would kill us.” he dodged the pillow his dad threw and headed back to his bedroom.
“You have some great kids Jon, be proud of them.” She said settling back into his embrace.
“Yeah I do.” Jon sipped his wine.
They sat like that for a while and just enjoyed being in the same room. Jon sighed and nuzzled her neck. He was happy that she was here but somewhere in the back of his mind a little voice said talk to her.
Stephanie sat in the window seat talking to Mark.
“Lexie got here a little while ago,” She told Mark.
“Your dad and Lexie are an item hum. A happy daddy is a occupied daddy” Mark laughed.
“So we can go out tomorrow night and I don't have to have my brother as a sitter.” She laughed,
“Your brother and Sally hitting it off?” Mark seemed to be interested in her brothers love life.
“They're just friends,”She leaned over and got her water bottle and took a long sip. “So are we on for tomorrow?”
“Yeah, I'll come by and pick you up, there's a bunch of us going up to the lake for a party.” He told her as he texted to his friend that they would be there.
“Party sounds just what I need.” She told him where they were staying and what time she would be ready.
The call was short but she was party bound tomorrow night,
Lexie pulled the bacon out of the pan and started another pan. Her laptop was sitting on the bar and between typing and flipping bacon she had the radio on. She stood there taping away on the laptop and her feet moving to the beat. She sniffed the air and went to check on the breakfast bread pudding in the over.
Looking up she saw Romeo and Jake following Snowball down the stairs.
“Wondered if you all were going to sleep all day.” She put down Snowballs food bowl and watched the boys climbing up at the breakfast bar. “Are you two hungry?”
“We always have fruit and cereal.” Jake told her as he watched her flip the bacon.
“Lexie makes us good breakfast Jakey.” Romeo told him. “She makes me messy eggs when I want them.”
“Well Romey, how about bacon and breakfast pudding this morning?” She asked as she pulled the pan of fragrant bread pudding out of the over.
“Silly Lexie, we can't have pudding for breakfast.” Jake laughed.
Jesse and Jon met at the top of the stairs and stopped at the sound of Jake laughing.
“I smelled bacon,” Jesse told his dad. “I thought you said she wasn't going to cook.”
“She can do what ever she wants, Jake is laughing.” Jon said as he high five his son,
“Daddy,” Jake called out “Lexie's got pudding for breakfast.” He pointed to his plate with Bacon and bread pudding.
“That's great Buddy, did you thank Lexie.” Jon got a cup of coffee and watched his three sons digging into breakfast.
“Thanks Lexie.” Jake smiled up at Lexie. He reached for another strip of bacon,
“You're welcome Jake.”She fixed Jon a plate and turned back to her laptop and tapped away. “You want to go get Stephanie up to eat or will she fix her own breakfast?”
“I'll go get her.” Jesse said as he snagged a couple slices of bacon and ran up the steps.
Without knocking he stuck his head in her room
“Hey Steph, Lexie's got breakfast ready get your butt out of bed.” Jesse laughed as Stephanie lifted her hand and gave him the bird. “She cooked bacon and this bread thing.” She still gave him the bird again. “okay I'll save you some bacon.” He laughed as he went downstairs. “Steph said she'd be down later.” He grabbed more bacon and put it on his plate.
“Listen I've got to finish this and then hit the store for dinner.” Lexie looked up from her computer.
“You can make a list and we'll do the shopping. That way you can work and I won't get death threats from your editor.” Jon took a big bite of bread pudding and moaned
“But I wanted to meet Sally” She told him never taking her eyes off the screen.
“I can invite her to dinner, if you want.” Jesse followed his father euphoria and closed his eyes savoring the sweet bread pudding.
Lexie looked up from the screen at Jesse.
“You would, that would be great. I'll make a list.” She dropped down her novel and started to make a grocery list.
The house was quiet when Stephanie came down. She went into the kitchen and she noticed how clean it was. She opened the fridge and pulled out juice and saw a plate wrapped with her name on it. Pulling it and unwrapping it she was hit with the smell of bacon and something sweet. Popping the plate into the microwave. Grabbing the juice she poured a glass and sat down waiting on the microwave.
Mark: morning blue eyes you ready for tonight?
Steph: ready and excited
Mark: No curfew?
Steph: he'll be too happy and distracted to care.
Mark: Good, later blue eyes
She closed off the message when the microwave beeped. She got the plate and sat down to eat.
“Augh” Lexie said as she came into the kitchen with the empty glass and plate. “I hate doing edits”
Stephanie jumped, she had thought the house was empty.
“Sorry,” Lexie said when Stephanie jumped.
“I thought everyone was gone.” She finished what was on the plate.
“Gone to get groceries.” She washed off the plate and glass then joined Stephanie at the breakfast bar.
“We've only been here three days what happened to the groceries daddy bought.” She popped the last bite of bacon in her mouth.
“I thought you guys might have had enough of salad and soup.” She took Stephanie’s plate to the sink.
“I'll get this.” Stephanie jumped up and took her dish to the sink. It just seemed too personal for Lexie to clean up after her.
“Is there anything you want special for dinner or someone you might like to ask? Jesse is going to ask Sally over for dinner and I thought you might like to ask someone.” Lexie poured so tea in her glass and watched Stephanie.
“I'm sort of going out tonight.” She stumbled over telling Lexie, seeing how she was only there as a distraction.
“Oh well, that's good. Does your father know?” She casually asked
“Not yet, I just got asked out about an hour ago.” She tried to brush off the feelings that she was feeling.
Okay Lex she's not going to open up to you. She's hiding something and you know and she knows it. You're going to have to step back and be around to pick up the pieces.
Just then the garage door open and the Escalade pulled in. Snowball met them at the back door.
“Lex, The grocery store wants to thank you for buying them out today” Jesse laughed as he hauled in three bags, followed by Jake with two, Romeo with two and Jon with the remaining four,
“Sally said dinner would be an honor and she looks forward to coming tomorrow night. It's okay we set it up for then, she had to work tonight.” Jon said as they began to unload the bags.
“That's great, we'll all be here.” Lexie said giving Stephanie the opening to tell her dad she had a date tonight.
“Yeah that's great, Daddy I was going to tell you, I have a date tonight.” Stephanie said as she emptied one of the bags.
“With Mark?” Jesse asked giving her a version of the famous Bongiovi stink eye.
“Yes with Mark and his friends, they're having a party down at the lake and he invited me.” She carried a jug of milk to the fridge, bumping into Jesse on the way.
“Good, I can meet the boy, let him know when you're due home.” Jon said as he folded the eccobag to go back in the SUV.
“Daddy, he isn't a boy, he goes to college.” She rolled her eyes.
Jesse whipped his head so fast Lexie thought she heard the joints snap.
“Okay, but I still want to meet this paragon of Apple I phones.” Jon laughed and looked at Lexie waiting on her to join his laughter. When she didn't he gave her a questioning look.
Soon the groceries were up, the boys were playing the Wii and Jesse and Stephanie were up stairs Jon watched Lexie tapping on the ever present laptop.
“Lex, you got a minute.” He sipped his coffee
“Sure Jon, whats on your mind.” She dropped her screen, she know that minute was gonna be a long one.
“Has Steph told you anything about this Mark guy?” He watched her face for any hint that he had something to worry about.
“No Jon, she hasn't said much about him. Just that he called an asked her to this party.” She went over to the fridge and pulled out her mug of tea and joined him at the bar.
“I've always let Dottie handle the kids and the dates, but I'm out here in a limb, I've never had to be the Dad.” He looked down in his coffee cup as if looking for all the answers to the problems in the world.
“Jon, I've never been a mom so I don't know what to tell you. But I do know your gonna fall as many times as you rise.” She touched his arm.
“In other words, I'm gonna learn from my mistakes.” he looked up at her and placed his hand over hers.
“Yep.” She leaned over the bar and gave him a little kiss.
Jesse and Stephanie stopped dead in their tracks seeing their dad and Lexie kissing in the kitchen
“You done a good thing Steph, I'm proud of you.” Jesse patted her on the back.
“Yeah, I done good” But there wasn't any passion in her voice. Seeing her dad kissing any one but there mom was gonna take a lot of getting use too. Like Mark said a happy dad was a distracted dad.