Patchwork

Joined
Oct 30, 2004
Part 29


Obviously the previous part was NC… so… for those that didn’t read it I guess I don’t need to go into details, but I’m just pasting the last moment in here, so you know what has been said:

Scene: SV lay in bed after… you know LOL

(…)I kiss my way though back to her face to meet her lips in a searing and never ending kiss.

“I love you” I state, propping my chest off hers. My eyes travel up and down her amazing body until they reach her gaze.

Her eyes reflect such a great amount of love that I can’t believe that we finally shared this wonderful moment together. At the same time I realise that tomorrow I’m going to leave her and break her heart if only for a few further more months until we can be together forever.

As if she could read my mind, tears are silently rolling down her cheeks. I roll our bodies to the side, spooning her real close. “It’s going to be alright Sydney… I promise it will be alright soon. I love you so much”

“I love you too” she sobs and the only thing I can do right now is hold her close; to make her realise that this isn’t just a one time thing. I’m not some sort of guy running away from her, into another country and never coming back. My love for Sydney is worth so much more otherwise I would have never shared with her what we just shared. I also know how important this unison was for Sydney and the simple fact that she shared this moment with me, makes me feel very special.



For the next two weeks upon our return from the United States I have yet to have this impending conversation with Laura. I already filled out applications for a VISA that would allow us to travel and stay in America for at least three months. It is going to take a long while to get used to the idea of living there forever but the wait is worth while, because living without Sydney is not an option. I just hope that Laura will take the news quite well.

Both my brother and mother are encouraging me for that decision. Sure I could feel my mother sad about loosing yet another son, so she says. Just two years ago my elder brother has moved South which means he only comes to visit my mother once, maybe twice per year. He is happily married with a child and has his job in Nice. With me and Laura now moving to America, she feels a little bit left alone but is aware of the feelings I have for Sydney. She sees me happy with Sydney, so there is no reason for her to keep that happiness away.

“Papa, est-ce que je peux aller jouer chez Julie?” (Daddy, can I go play at Julie’s?) Laura asks, waking me out of my daydream as I sit blankly staring at the wallpaper on my computer screen. A picture of the entire family taken on July 4th, with everybody on it! The smiling faces making it much easier for me to open the talk.

I don’t answer her right away and simply lift her up into my lap. With my arms wrapped around her slender frame I kiss the top of her head as she rests with her back against my chest, looking onto the screen, Doudou tightly clutched against her chest.

The entire conversation is in French (obviously) but for everybody’s sake, (even my own LOL) I will have to write it in English…

Laura starts giggling, her finger pointing at the picture “(Look, Adam’s pulling his tongue and then Susan did too and then Sydney got mad at him for pulling out his tongue)”

I smile remembering exactly when this photo was taken while a lump starts forming in my throat. I’m not really sure what the best approach is, so I start with something easy.

“(You like Sydney, don’t you?)” She nods her head, lifting her arms up and snaking them around my head. “(What would you say, if we would visit Sydney and stay there forever?)”

“(If we live with Sydney?)” I nod my head, “(because you wanna marry her?)” I nod again my head and then she shrugs her shoulders, thinking for a moment. “(Am I still gonna see grandma?)”

“(Of course you will see grandma, except not as often as you do while living here in France. You know, moving to America will mean that you will have to speak English, you will be going to school there, you will make new friends and well instead of having grandma pick you up from school, Sydney would be there.)” I stop, gazing at the wrinkles forming on her forehead. Then I continue “(When Sydney and I are going to get married, Sydney will be like a new mummy to you… would you like Sydney to be your new mummy?)”

She shrugs, “(I guess so. I like her because she’s very nice and funny too. I really like her and Susie. Susie’s cute. I like her too.)”

I have to smile at the thought of Susan, because that little girl had me wrapped around her little finger from the very first smile on. The first time I saw Susan, she was sitting in her high chair, her face smeared with the food standing in front of her. The previous night Eric and Sydney had agreed for me to sleep over at Sydney’s for the rest of my stay instead of a hotel since Eric himself had visitors. So the next day after work, I picked up my belongings at Eric’s, crossed the lawn and rang the doorbell.

I was interrupting the family’s dinner and quickly ushered inside. Excuses weren’t tolerated, so I followed Sydney’s step into the kitchen, seeing everybody sitting around the table while Sydney was serving dinner. I sat down next to Susan who then sat between Sydney and me. She stared up at me with her big round eyes, holding her plastic spoon out at me, sauce dripping down onto the tiled floor of the kitchen as Sydney struggled to keep her put. Instead of listening to her mother, Susan would keep staring at me until a big smile crept up on her face.

“Noonles” she said, referring to her plate filled up with Noodles. I had to smile at her cuteness and that was it; the beginning of a great friendship between a thirty-six year old man and an almost two year old girl. Five days later, the family was celebrating her second birthday.

“(So they’re going to be like my brothers and sister?)” She questions turning her head to look up at me.

“(Yes. So what do you say? Would you like to live in America?)”

She nods her head with a small smile on her face. Even though we have had a little talk, I curiously wonder whether she really understood the impact this moving would have on her life. I realise that we will have to talk about this more often, explain her in detail what it really means because I want her to be happy about moving. I know that I will be sad leaving this country but then I’d also be happy about the prospect of spending the rest of my life with the woman I love. All I want is for Laura to be happy too.

“(When are we going to see Sydney again?)” She questions innocently, clearly giving me the sign that she hasn’t fully comprehend the few words we have exchanged.

“I’m not sure, but soon I guess” I tell her, kissing the top of her head, smelling in the scent of her strawberry flavoured shampoo.

I hold onto her for another while as we both let the conversation sink in. About ten minutes later I pat her legs and beg her to get off me, saying that she wanted to go play with Julie. I thus give a brief call to the family and since her mother is alright with the girls playing together I get Laura ready for the afternoon and drop her off at Julie’s.


End Part 29

A/N: I know the last updates have been done here and there... but now we're back on track, so Wednesday is the next update as usual... as well as Sundays :angelic:
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2004
Part 30


Hey,

You’re not going to believe what happened today. Susan made her first start on riding the tricycle. *smile* I’m so happy right now and so proud of her! I love to see her growing, though it makes me very sad at the same time because I know that she’s growing much faster than I want her to grow.

Adam took her out into the driveway and showed her how to do it right. It took her a little while to grasp the functioning of a tricycle but once she got the kick out of it, she wouldn’t let go. I think she’s been biking ever since this afternoon, and it’s already 6pm!

I’m sure you’re sleeping and I wish you could have been here to share that special moment with me. My little baby is growing so fast! Too fast! But every day she learns something new still amazes me as much! I’ll never tire of watching her grow.

Attached you’ll find several pictures I’ve taken of the runaway girl! I better keep an eye on that one though. *laugh*

Oh Michael, I love and miss you so much. Last night I could do nothing else but stare at the empty space beside me in bed. I longed to reach out for you and kiss you. All I wanted was to feel your arms around me so I closed my eyes and imagined them tightly wrapped around me. I guess that’s how I eventually fell asleep. I’m not sure.

And then, moments like this afternoon, make me miss you all over again.

The other day, I was reading Susan’s favourite book to her; the one you read her too. There’s this one picture where the father takes his girls out on a trip to the zoo, remember? Well, it’s a casual picture and out of the blue, Susan babbles “Mummy, look Papa”. I had tears in my eyes because I was so not prepared for that. I guess she caught on Laura calling you Papa and she thinks that’s your name. I don’t know… then I realise the impact you have had on her young life.

I’m torn between my emotions on daily basis but I’m not sure what to tell her when it comes to her father. I know I will have to tell her the truth, but how am I supposed to tell her and when is the right time to do so?

Sorry I’m bothering you with such questions in the wee of the morning.

Whatever, I just wanted to send you those pictures *smile* and I gotta go get dinner ready anyway…

Love you,
Sydney

+++++++++

Sydney,

OMG Susie is so sweet! I absolutely adore those pictures. (BTW, don’t hesitate to send me some more. I just love them). Laura and I are having a blast. Even my mother sat down and surfed through them. Yes, my mother! I actually couldn’t believe it as she sat down and scolded me for not being faster! She literally gushed at each and every single picture!

Nice pink tricycle by the way! I guess that one is new, unless you forced your boys to ride a pink bike when they were Susan’s age! *smile*

I can understand you being proud of her! Oh, it’s such a weird coincidence because right now my brother and I are busy teaching Laura how to bike too without the training wheels that is. I swear she’s one stubborn girl sometimes! She can’t do it yet on her own but forces us to let go the moment we even come near the bike! When she wants to achieve something she goes for it! She’s excited and I guess that today will be another day where she will drag my brother outside for more biking!

Switching back to Susan again, I think she has reached an age where she would see/recognize me as a father. I think it’s only natural for her to feel that way about me, especially since our last visit. Just like you I’m no quite sure how she perceives the entire Papa thing, but I’d rather go for the first one. You always call me by my given name so I think she might have picked up on that one, but instead she used the word Papa that Laura uses too. Does she know the word Daddy at all? I have never heard her saying it… OMG I so want to hear her say it!

I might break your heart by saying so but you know how much I love her. Besides it’s only natural for her… so I don’t want you to “hate” her for speaking those words. I think it’s important for her to know a way to call me anyway and Papa would be an excellent way to do that. That way she could have a Daddy (Danny) and a Papa (me). It would be a good start as an explanation to give, showing her two photos of two different people. Maybe Adam and Zachary could be of help also for the future, because they still remember their father. You know, just as well as me that Susan has one father and that it’s Danny. I don’t want to be some sort of replacement. I want Susan to know who her real father is and that I’m the person who fell in love with her mother, that we got married and that I love her just as much as I love my own daughter.

What do you think? We could talk about this some more over the phone next time we have the opportunity to do so. Silly time zones! I really miss your voice, but I do miss your smile much more…

I love you,
Michael

+++++++++

Michael,

I definitely liked your suggestion about referring to Danny as Susan’s daddy and you as Papa. I think it could work, maybe without her fully understanding as yet but I think it’s a good start. I will have to have a serious talk with Susie then. (as serious as a conversation can be with an almost 3 year old LOL)

How is work moving along by the way? Still as busy as ever or has it slowed down now that you’ve had time to catch back some of the abandoned work during your absence. It’s summer vacation after all… I hope it’s not too busy.

That reminds me that Eric asked me for you to send me your resume so I could either print it or forward it to Eric’s working address, or which ever way you prefer. Apparently the big bosses would like to read it but Eric still says that there shouldn’t be too much trouble for you getting the job. That would be so great! I know how worried you are about this…

Could you please also send me the files about Laura too that way I can show up at school before they close down for summer break? There shouldn’t be too much trouble to enter her into the elementary school that Adam and Zach attended. OMG, Zach will start junior high this year! I’m getting old… haha.

I don’t think I need anything else. I hope you’re not having too much trouble for the visa but we’ll talk about this over the weekend. Are you going to be able to make it for a phone call this time? I can call you anytime you want. The kids are with their grandparents this weekend so I’m free like a bird! Seriously I think I will feel rather left alone in this big house! I haven’t been by myself since Susan was born! I couldn’t believe when they showed up at the doorstep wanting to take the kids for a little camp. They were all so thrilled, especially the boys! They were a little bit annoyed about their little sister joining them, but they’ll live!

Write soon,
Love you
Sydney



End of Part 30
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2004
cookie do urealiese i respond at 3 different places lol i find it funny anwho loving the letters and cant wait for vaughn to ggeth his but to syd
:LOL: Yeah... I realised that too... but I think you're not the only one... if not three, some people reply on two :P not that I mind
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2004
Part 31


After one month spent apart from Sydney, I’m travelling once again to America, this time though alone. I have many things to set up in the United States, like my job interview at Eric’s Company. If this one doesn’t work out I have a couple of more applications that need to be checked out. I’m really hoping that I get a job as fast as possible because the faster I have a job, the sooner we will be able to move. I don’t want Laura to miss too much in school, since she will be starting school later than the other kids.

Sydney and I will spend lots of time with paperwork. I know it will be easier for me to stay in the United States if Sydney and I get married and then we will have to prove our love for each other. I’m not really fond about that idea but there’s no way around it.

Upon seeing Sydney’s and Susan’s bright smile at the airport I felt so relieved. We threw ourselves into each other’s arms as if we hadn’t seen for a year. The truth though is that it nearly felt that way, despite it being one month.

“God I missed you so much!” I exclaim, kissing her lips sweetly several times after our initial lip lock.

“Missed you too…” Sydney whispers, setting Susan into my arms. I relish in the feeling of holding her in my arms again.

Tickling the girl’s tummy I add, “Hey sweetie”

“Papa” She babbles, and then turns her head to her mother pointing her finger out to the bus passing by “Look bus. I go there” Then she fervently nods her head.

It sounds like she finally also understood the meaning of the I word. Has it really been one month? Then of course, I didn’t fail to notice her calling me Papa. It’s the sweetest ever though and I kiss the top of her head lovingly, before cradling her head in the crook of my neck while sending a smile at Sydney. It feels good being here.

In the car, I insist on driving all the way back home; it will give me a change. By the time we are home, Adam and Zach are also back from school and doing their homework up in their rooms. Sydney serves us something to drink and eat and lays Susan down for a short afternoon nap. While we sip on our drinks, Sydney is comfortably nestled against my chest on the couch. Even though I long to stay here and never move ever again, I know that I will miss my daughter far too much to not move. In one week I’ll be flying back to France but it will be the last time. The next time Laura and I will be flying to America we’ll be staying here forever.

It’s such a huge step that it could almost scare me. In some way it does, on the other it doesn’t… because I know I will be happy as long as Sydney will be with me.

“Mind if I give Laura a call?”

“You’re really asking me that?!” she answers staring over her reading glasses that are hunched at the tip of her nose. If I wouldn’t love her already, I think I’d fall head over heels with her right then. I roll my eyes aware that I shouldn’t push it, grab the phone and dial the so familiar phone number.

“Papa!!!!!!!” comes the cheery voice of my daughter on the other side of the phone line. Even though Sydney won’t understand half of the conversation I still put her onto the speakers for Sydney to hear. “C’était bien ton vol?” (Did you have a nice flight?) she questions as I picture her standing with her girly pink nightgown in the hallway and no slippers on her feet! I just every so often have to remind her not to run around without them!

“Oui! Comment vas-tu ma chérie?” (Yes, how are you sweetie?”)

“Bien. Mamie prépare le petit-déjeuner” (Fine, grandma is preparing breakfast)

We exchange another couple of lines before I promise to call her again in a few days before my return in France. I insist that she should go easy on grandma and also listen to her or her uncle when they tell her something.

“Tu me fais un bisous?” (Give me a kiss?”) With that she makes a loud smooching sound into the receiver that makes Sydney giggle and snort. I pull out my tongue at Sydney adding, “Sydney te fais aussi un gros bisous” (Sydney sends back a kiss to you). “Je t’aime très fort” (I love you a lot)

“Je t’aime aussi très fort papa” (I love you a lot too daddy)

Then we finish our phone call, at which Sydney can’t withhold, “You’re so cute!”

“Yeah well…” I shrug feeling a little bit downcast, knowing my daughter so far away from me.

Sydney takes me into her arms and drops a loving kiss onto my lips, “And sexy too… You’re the best papa ever in the world! I’m always amazed about how much the two of you love each other. She really is your little princess, huh?”

I give her the same look she gave me earlier. “She’s my child Sydney… She means the world to me. Nothing and nobody could ever take her away from me!” I tell her sincerely. But she knows what I mean. She’s a mother herself after all. Parents always feel extremely protective when it comes to their children.

“MUM! Zach’s coming into my room without knocking!” Adam’s voice resonates through the entire house. “Get out! Get out! Get out!” The boy emphasizes after which a loud door slamming follows.

“Don’t slam your door Adam!” Sydney shrieks back almost deafening me on the way. “Sorry” she cringes lightly, “Still sure you wanna marry me?”

I pull back a few strands of her loose hair behind her ear, looking deep into your eyes “Of course! Three kids or four or seven… it wouldn’t make a difference. I’d still love you as much. And if you think I can’t stand up in front of those two, then you’re wrong…”

“Good, because sometimes I could just kill them! They’re literally jumping each other’s throats and I wouldn’t want you to hate me for having three messy children. After all you’re only used to have one and by moving in with me it’s gonna be a huge change”

“And you think I’m not aware of that fact?”

“Just making sure…” she smiles and nuzzles her nose into my neck, moaning, her grip tightening around my waist. “I’m so happy you’re here”

“I’m also happy”


Part 32


Yet another week flies by much too fast and then it is already time for me to fly back home. With a new job to look forward to, there’s nothing much else that needs to be done; apart from packing up our few cherished belongings. It’s also much easier for me to let go of Sydney with the prospect of seeing the family hopefully within the next two months.

Upon my long return flight I allowed Laura to sleep with me in the big bed but I don’t seem to find any sleep. Too much has happened in one week that keeps me awake as I lay and watch my daughter sleep peacefully next to me. Her chest raising and falling with every breath she takes, unaware the big changes about to happen in her life. All the things are settled for the new school she will be attending.

I wrap my arm around her small figure, letting her regular breathing lull me eventually to sleep.

The next morning we wake up, ready for a new day to start. I especially took another two days off due to the heavy jetlag I’m suffering from right now, which of course gives me two extra days to spend with Laura. Since a very hot July day today, I decide to take her to the open swimming pool about forty five minutes drive away, further out of the city.

Marie and Julie also come along as her friends, wanting Laura to spend as much time as possible before our departure to another country. They both know about Laura moving and are even very sad knowing their friend to leave mainly since they won’t see each other again for another very long while.

“Papa, prends une photo pour envoyer à Sydney” (Daddy, take a picture for Sydney) Laura says, rummaging for my camera in the bag and then holding it out to me. We sit under a big tree sheltering us from the beating sun. Several mats give us a large space to sit comfortably on. The three girls just returned from their swim, dripping wet, I first hand each a towel to wrap around their slightly shivering bodies and then hand out a sandwich to eat.

I agree and take several pictures while they are munching and sipping away on their orange juices and water. They seem to enjoy the time as good as they can. Next week both Julie and Marie are travelling abroad with their parents and I’m not quite sure whether we will still be there after their return. It all depends on the papers from the government I’m waiting for but I put up a margin of two months at the most.

All in all it has been a very nice day out. We even got a little suntan so in the evening I cover Laura’s body with a soft after-sun lotion in order to protect her skin. After putting her to bed, I turn on my lap top, loading the pictures on the computer before sending an email to Sydney with the attached pictures of the day.


Dear Sydney,

I have been very exhausted after my return so I’d like to apologize for not writing earlier. The flight was ok, almost shorter than the previous times. Of course it isn’t but it only feels that way… *smile*. Laura and my brother were waiting for me at the gate. I have never been as happy as this time to hold my daughter again in my arms. I know that it is only a question of several weeks before we will be together again. I think it makes me miss you less, I don’t know…

Anyway, today I took Laura to the pool together with Marie and Julie (remember you saw them at the dance class?). It’s very hot right now all over Europe, you could drink water all the time and your body feels even too tired to move over to the fridge to get the ice-cream. It’s incredibly hot! Of course with summer vacation and the hot temperature, the pool was crowded. We still had a great time, especially the girls. With three of them, I had to constantly watch out and make sure they wouldn’t run off or get lost. They were all little angels and behaved very nicely so they were rewarded with an ice-cream after their pool session!

I’m sending you several pictures so you can see for yourself! Also notice that Laura has lost her first tooth while I was in America. There’s a tiny gap at the bottom front right side (her left tooth) on picture number 15 where she’s grinning broadly into the camera. (girls…. *roll eyes*). My mother didn’t know about the missing tooth and so you can only imagine how Laura felt like when the tooth fairy didn’t show up the next day! My brother thus placed a dress for her dolls the next night at her night stand, explaining that the tooth fairy had been too busy the previous night to show up. I don’t know how he managed but apparently it convinced her and she no longer pouted!

Otherwise nothing much has happened since my return in France, except that it’s HOT! Did I mention this? I’m sitting here in front of the computer and all I feel like doing is jump into the pool again. Even though it’s almost midnight it doesn’t look like it’s going to cool much down during the night. I hope I will be able to sleep because last night was barely possible! Just too hot and too many thoughts going around in my mind…

I just can’t wait to be with you again…

Miss you,
Love,
Michael


++++++++++


Hey,

I had a large smile looking at the pictures. I only realised then, that I was missing Laura so much! I mean it really struck me! She’s really a doll… they all are. So you took them to the pool, huh? I sure do hope they had a great time! Who doesn’t when going to the pool?

Poor sweetie… I felt so sorry reading about the tooth fairy story. At least she took it well when your brother made up a lame excuse… haha… it worked though so I won’t go further into it but it reminded me how simple it sometimes can be to fool your own children. (It’s only for their own good, it’s not like we’re actually lying to them…). She’s little by little growing from young child into a bigger child. Is she already excited about going to first grade? I bet she is. Both Adam and Zach couldn’t wait and of course Zach caught so much from his brother that he could read when he started first grade. Things just seem to come much easier to Zach than Adam, it’s weird… I mean… you know right? How genes can mingle up… But they both look so much like Danny the older they get. I guess that Laura will look pretty much like Anna the older she gets, though she already does now but the traits will get stronger later on…

You know what really made me happy last week? It’s the bonding you and the boys grew into during those six days. Eric sort of is a father figure to them and I know that the boys need it. Especially Adam needs a father figure much more now than a couple of years ago. I feel that there are things he doesn’t want to talk about with me. I also can understand that there are things he much rather prefers talking about with a man instead with… well… his mother… but a mother nevertheless feels left out in that case.

I was worried about this all the time. Zachary takes a long time to get used to new people so I’m glad he has finally accepted you. Of course playing basket ball outside is just the perfect thing to do, to get him to open up! Danny was exactly the same… I don’t know whether you have noticed it, but Adam looks up to you… Adam is a distant person not very much communicative so you might not have noticed it, but I did. So even though he probably made you feel indifferent, that’s not true! He starts liking you… so just give him a little time and you’ll see but as said, Adam doesn’t talk a lot… that’s just the way he is… Zach takes some time, but then he can get all cuddly and all (as you might have noticed during your last stay). He’s no longer a little boy and not yet a teenager. He tries to act cool in front of his friends when I’m around and back home, he just, well… he’s a cuddler and he needs to stay in my arms every so often.

Sorry about my rambling. I just felt it necessary to let you know. I haven’t had the chance to tell you the night before you left due to the boy laying in the middle of the bed! So…yeah…

I miss you too so much!
I just hope that time will fly real fast… Susan says hello to you (she’s sitting in my lap now) so before she’s deleting this email again, I better hit the sent button LOL…

Love you too,
Sydney



End Part 31 and 31
 

grassyass

Cadet
Joined
Aug 27, 2005
Location
ireland
only two months woooooo!!! lol
im glad michael is connecting so well with the boys
thanks for the pm lol gracie oh and i loved te chap
 

1hockeynut

Cadet
Joined
Aug 7, 2006
Great chapters...I'm loving the double update thing! Keep those chapters coming. As always, thanks for the PM.

:cool:
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2004
Part 33


Sydney,

Are you aware that only 15 hours are leaving us apart? I’m just… HAPPY, beyond HAPPY! I mean literally HAPPY! I love you so much and can’t wait to see you again, and hold you in my arms! It’s going to be the greatest feeling! I can’t wait… 15 hours!!!!!!

Laura can’t wait either but I wonder what kind of impact it will have on her, this entire moving? I’m worried about that… I explained her everything as good as I could. It’s going to be hard for her because I know that she will be missing her grandmother big time! I showed her the photos of her new school and everything and she knows that her first school day is after tomorrow and she’s excited about that too. But then again, it will be a class full of children speaking another language she won’t understand! It’s not that I’m having doubts… It’s just… worries… and they are becoming real now because I know they aren’t far away. But we’ll take matters in hand when they happen. She’s not the first child going through something like that! She’ll live but it still gives me the right as a father to worry about her well-being.

Anyway… I just wanted to let you know that I shipped off the last items today and they should arrive in America about a week from today. Things are settled, everything is packed and we’re ready to leave in about two hours….

Just a few more hours and I’ll be with you *smile*

I love you,
Michael



That email was written about 24 hours ago as I read through it. I briefly got online in order to send an email to my mother whom I got acquainted with the concept of writing and sending letters online. Sydney is in the bathroom right now, getting ready for bed. It doesn’t take me long to finish off the few lines and then turn off the computer when Sydney steps out of the steamy room.

“Jeesh, you took one hot shower!” I smile, wrapping my arms around her and kiss her tenderly.

She is about to reply, when a soft knock comes from the door. Laura peaks her head through the door and so I welcome her inside. Her eyes travel shyly up to Sydney as she stands awkwardly with Doudou clasped under her right arm.

“Papa?” her protruding lip tells me that she needs a cuddle before she even speaks out the words. “Je veux dormir avec toi” (Daddy I wanna sleep with you).

I look up at Sydney and without needing to translate she says, “It’s alright, she can sleep with us tonight if she can’t sleep…” I kiss her as a thank you, ushering Laura under the covers. I’m rapidly though heading under the shower myself before joining the pair in bed again. We spend another few minutes chatting. Laura tells Sydney the new English words she has learnt from a children tape I bought her a while ago. Sydney laughs pronouncing words the wrong way that Laura tries to teach her in return in French. They giggle and it makes my heart swell with love seeing them interact and bond.

Laura though quickly falls asleep, too exhausted from the trip. Of course being with me helps too…

“I think she’s going to learn English much faster than I will French!” Sydney smiles, gazing down at my daughter. “I just suck when it comes to languages. My Spanish at school was the worst ever! I think I literally grew grey hair on my teacher’s head back then…” she snorts.

I even think that I have to agree with her on this. She’s not much of a person learning languages easily. It’s cute though listening to her rambling and trying to get the words right. I must be staring far away into the distance when I feel Sydney’s smooth skin against my cheek.

“Hey… she’ll be ok. I promise I’ll do anything to make her feel at home here.” Sydney whispers briefly leaning in to plant a chaste kiss onto my lips.

It takes me a minute or two to realise what she means with that, though it’s not what I’m worried about. “Sydney, I’m sure she already feels home here. I mean… you’re giving her so much.”

“What do I need a guestroom for anyway? She needs her own bedroom Michael! We’ll go to the shop next weekend and she can pick it out herself. I first wanted to do it, but then I thought it’s her room… I want her to like her new bedroom.” Sydney explains with a huge smile and dreaming eyes on my daughter. “Even though I’ve seen her bedroom in Paris… I just think it’s important for her to pick out her own design! I don’t want to impose that part on her either. She’s old enough to know what she likes and how she wants her bedroom to be.”

I kiss her this time, adding a soft “Thank you… you’re right… We’ll do this next weekend!”

With last I love you’s and Goodnight’s spoken, we close our eyes, our intertwined fingers resting on Laura’s hip and then fall into deep slumber. The next morning I wake up, finding both girls gone. Casual rummaging around from the first floor could be heard. Lifting myself out of bed, I first straighten my shirt before walking downstairs.

Sydney is in the kitchen cleaning away some dishes, informing me that they’ve already had breakfast. On the other side of the room, both Laura and Susan lay flat on their stomach watching ELMO. They giggle and laugh. I don’t know why though and I think neither does Laura. She probably is only laughing along because Susan is acting funny again, mimicking ELMO. I shake my head and smile inwardly at the little giddy girl.

I walk up to Sydney and kiss softly her shoulder blade making her bolt.

“Sorry… didn’t mean to scare you”

“It’s alright… hey… did you sleep well?” She mumbles against my lips, kissing me deeply while the children’s laughter fills the room. “You looked so tired and I couldn’t overwin waking you up”

“Thanks, I think I really needed it”

“Want some coffee? Something to eat?” She questions while I take place on the stool at the kitchen counter.

“Coffee’s fine” I simply reply.

“Papa!” Laura exclaims when she has finally spotted me, running up to me for our usual morning hug.

“Bonjour ma chérie. T’as bien dormi?” (Morning sweetie. Did you sleep well?) With a nod of her head, she gives me a big hug and a kiss onto my cheek. Right that moment Susan must feel left out and clings up to my leg.

“Papa” she requests being lifted up into my arms too. That dimpled smile of hers obviously gets her anything she wants. The look though that Laura flashes over at Susan right that moment is of pure shock! I’m not quite sure how to react and one look at Sydney tells me that she doesn’t either. After a kiss and hug with Susan I set her back down onto the ground watching her trot back to watch ELMO.

I’m in for another talk with my daughter…. Explaining her everything… and that in the future I will be Susan’s Papa as much as I will be Laura’s. At first she was very apprehensive but then she learnt that Susan no longer had a daddy, just like she didn’t have a mummy; she sort of understood, after all Sydney will be like a mother to her.

Everything is new to everybody and I guess it will take some time to get used to each other. But I’m convinced that everything will work out for the best. Only time, lots of understanding and love will tell.


End of Part 33
 
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