Stephanie watched the car pull out the drive and waited on Snow to do her business.
“Well girl, welcome to the family.” Stephanie said as she looked down at Snowball. “Your momma and my daddy are gonna be married.”
“Daddy and Lexie getting marrweed?” Romeo asked.
“That's why daddy and Lexie are going out, so he can ask her. You want that don't you?” Stephanie asked Romeo.
Snowball walked between Stephanie and Romeo. While Stephanie shut the door and locked it up, Romeo thought about what Stephanie had told him.
“So daddy and Lexie are gonna get married.” Romeo said.
Stephanie could almost see his little brain trying go gasp the information. All of a sudden he broke out in a huge smile.
“That means Snowball will be our puppy.” He ran into the family room yelling for Jake. Snowball running and jumping right with him.
“Jakey daddy and Lexie are gonna get married, and Snowball will be our puppy.” Romeo yelled as he and Jakey rolled on the floor tumbling with Snowball.
“So, those two are happy.” Jesse watched the three of them rolling on the floor.
“Yeah, nothing is gonna change.” Stephanie told him.
“It will if she has a baby, now that they are gonna be married.” Jesse finally let the elephant into the room.
“A baby, aren't they too old for that?” Stephanie asked
“Not if my Physics teacher is any thing to go by.” Jesse told her.
“We'll see, won't we.” Stephanie went into the kitchen to check on the pizza that she had in the oven.
Jon drove toward Long Branch, he called in a few favors and got a table for two. He had it all planned dinner and then a walk on the beach. The moon would be full and the beach deserted. He would ruin his pants but it would worth it to make it memorable for her.
He pulled into the lot of Avenue La Club. Jogging around the car just to open her door. Once out he tucked her arm with his and walked her to the restaurant. They were seated by the window and no one was to be seated near them. They talked about their up coming schedules and where they would go for the upcoming holidays. Jon paid the bill and they headed out the restaurant, Jon angled her toward the boardwalk. They looked in the windows, then he guided her to the beach. He helped her remove her shoes and stockings, balling up the stocking he put them in his jacket pocket.
“This is so nice, bet the kids would like coming down here.” Lexie said as they moved down the dark beach.
“We could take a weekend and come down.” Jon told her as the moon crested the horizon, they stood there and looked out over the water as the moon rose higher and higher.
Jon turned her to face him.
Lexie was caught by the look in his eyes The whole night he had that same look in his eyes. All of a sudden she had had a little nervous shiver run through her body.
“I was at the end of my rope, or rather the bottom of my bottle, when I showed up at that cabin.” He watched her dip her head, lifting it up so he could look deep in her eyes. “I walked in the kitchen and thought you were the cook Hugh hired so Romeo wouldn't starve, while we were there.”
Lexie giggled at the memory of Jon standing in the kitchen.
Jon fingered the box in his pocket.
“By the end of the week, I knew I had found someone special. Someone who loved, liked me for being me. You and that little ball of white fur slipped into my heart and made me want to share my life again. You brought my family together and bonded with them.” He went off script that he had written in his head. “They must love you already to volunteer sitting for the terrible two.” he laughed.
Lexie giggled along with him. She was shocked when he dropped down on one knee.
“Jon?” Lexie breathed.
“I want to spend the rest of my life waking up next to you, to grow old with you.” He looked up in her shocked face. “Share the good times and the bad times, share my children with you.” He pulled the box out of his pocket. “Will you do me the honor of being my wife?” He held up the ring and it sparkled in the moon light as if he had it all planned with the man in the moon.
Lexie gasped as the ring came into view. It was beautiful and not so ostentatious that she wouldn't feel safe to wear it to a signing. She held her hand out for him to place it on her left hand. Then she noticed she was so into him, the proposal and the ring that she hadn't answered him.
“Yes Jon, yes I'll marry you and share your life and your children.” She reached down to him and put her hands around his cheeks and bent down and kissed him.
Neither of them noticed the flash of a single camera. He had stayed outside in the cooling night and followed them down the boardwalk. He knew something was up, he had almost called the paper to let them know who and what he had just witnessed. Something stopped him when they had headed down on the beach, here there was no where to blend in, as they was on the boardwalk. When he saw Jon drop to one knee he knew a proposal was in the works. Now he was glad to be the only reporter on the beach. Their faces had been in shadow, if you knew who it was, you couldn't tell from the picture. He quickly let the couple have their special moment. As he turned to walk back to his car he looked at his watch, he had fifteen minutes to make the morning addition.
“I wonder if the kids are up?” Lexie asked as they walked back to the car.
“They better not be, I want you naked wearing only your ring.” He leaned close and gave her a quick kiss as he held the door to the car. She giggled as he went around to get in.
They were lucky that they made back to the house without a ticket for speeding. The reporters snapped to when the car roared up the street. Thank God he remembered to open the gate by remote or when he spun into the drive he would have taken the gate out and made the morning edition. Camera's flashed, Lexie put her hand up to block the flash reflected off the windows. Jon fishtailed spraying gravel and yard.
He screeched into the garage, jumping out and ran around the car. Scooping her up in his arms, he carried her, both of them laughing. He flipped the lock and let her open the door.
“They left the television on.” He said as the entered the family room only to stop. There standing between them and the steps were Stephanie and Jesse. Hands on hips, looking every bit of angry parent mode.
“You were supposed to be in bed.” Jon told them, slowly letting Lexie side down his body.
“You two are late, Romeo wanted to wait up, it was a struggle to get him and Jakey to bed.” Stephanie told them, standing with her hands on her hips.
Jon would have laughed, but she was so serious. He grinned and tried to give them the a stink eye, but he was too happy to muster one.
“Well, what do you have to say daddy?” Jesse asked him.
He took Lexie by the left hand and lifted it up for them to see.
Jesse slapped him on the back and Stephanie squealed and threw her arms around Lexie.
“Now, go to bed, we want to celebrate.” Jon laughed as he shooed his older two up the stairs.
“Jon?” Lexie blushed as he followed a laughing Jon.
When they got upstairs and the kids into their rooms he scooped her back up in his arms.
“Where were we?” He said them kissed her. “I think we were heading here.” He stopped at the door to his bedroom and reached down and opened the door.