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    Justin4Fun
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 

Re-United - 2. Chapter 2

“Enter” I said, still stunned at the comfort of such an amazingly handsome suit.

Maggie entered and curtsied. "Forgive us, Me Lord. We did the best we could in our hurry."

“Maggie, yes. Please, come in and show us what you found.” I said. She stood frozen, staring at our suits. “Never mind the suits, we just got them and were trying them on. You go about your business while we change, then you can show us what you brought us. How’s that?” I smiled, trying to get her to relax, but I could tell it was a losing battle.

When she recovered, she curtsied and quickly said, “Aye, Me Lord,” before trying to back away from us while trying to manage her assistants.

Billy made a quick exit while Scott and I simply went into our dressing room. We took our time taking the suits off, carefully hanging them, and placing them inside their garment bags. I debated what to wear for lunch and finally settled on my best jeans and a polo shirt. After pulling on a pair of casual dress shoes and running my hand through Scott’s hair, just to bug him, I stepped back into our bedroom.

Tommy and Leonard were setting up a nylon crib-looking contraption while Maggie and one of her assistants were cutting the tags off a stack of baby clothes – I soon learned that they were called onesies – while the other girl was unloading boxes of disposable diapers, wet wipes, bottles, and several other things that were foreign to me. When Maggie and her helper finished the tags, the helper gathered them all into a folding nylon clothes basket and headed for the door. Looking around to see what more needed done, Maggie noticed that Scott and I had returned.

Giving a quick curtsey, she said, “Begging your pardon, Me Lords, I didn’t see yous standin’ there.”

“You’re fine, Maggie. You’ve done an amazing job. Would you show us what we have? And please, relax. Honest, we don’t bite.” I immediately realized the horrible pun, but she either missed it or ignored it.

“Of course, Me Lord. Right away,” she replied with a nod. “And thank you. I’ll try to ease up a bit.”

She explained that Sarah had taken all the onesies and tee shirts to be washed as new clothing often had chemicals that would irritate an infant’s skin. She then pointed out ‘all the necessary bits and bobs’; this seemed to encompass the diapers, wipes, and such. Finally, she came to the thing Tommy and Leonard were struggling with.

Exasperated, she muttered, “It’s like watching a cat try to herd sheep, it is." Then shooed the boys away and quickly set it up. When finished, she showed us how it had a small, portable carrier that doubled as a bassinet, perfect for a newborn, a changing table surface, as well as storage for all the ‘bits and bobs.’ She then explained that it had a removable mattress that could be placed at several levels as the child grew. She pointed out how it could serve as a playpen for a larger infant, then taught us how to set it up and pack it away for transport. I was utterly amazed at what she had done in such a short period of time.

When she had supervised Scott and me setting the thing back up, I turned to her and smiled warmly. “Maggie, you have outdone yourself. I am…” I coughed to cover my emotions. “I am pleased beyond words, and I intend to let His Highness know of the incredible job you’ve done for us. If I ever need anything while I’m visiting, I will seek you out.”

"Oh, thank you kindly, Me Lord," Maggie said with a humble nod. "It’s nothing but me duty to be helping out. And if there’s ever anything you be needin', you just give a shout for me. 'Tis a pleasure to be of service to you and His Highness." She glanced around, then added, “I’ll be havin’ Sarah fold those onesies for you, and we’ll be bringing them up as soon as they’re ready, Me Lord.”

With her work complete, she curtsied and quickly left us. It seemed like she had just shut the door when there was a knock. I focused and said, “Come in, Jake.”

The door opened, and he asked, “How’d you know—”

“You stink, human!” I shouted.

He suddenly stopped, unsure for a moment if I was serious or not. He decided not and came on in. Looking around, he asked, “So, when’s Scott going into labor?”

Another knock. “Come in, Chris.”

“How’d you know it was me?” Chris asked as he walked in. He then looked around, confused, as we all burst out laughing.

“What’s up, Chris?”

“Dad talked to the priest. He said there’s no problem with scheduling; just give him forty-eight hours so it can get in the paper.” He handed me a paper, “Dad sent me a death notice for you to approve. If you like it, it will run this evening.”

Charles Andrew Fowler (Oct 3, 1963 – Jul 5, 2014)

Charles Andrew Fowler of Frankfurt died in a traffic accident while on a business trip

in Los Angeles, California. He was preceded in death by his parents, Gregory Michael Fowler

and Catherine (Smith) Fowler, and his beloved wife, Camilla (Twigg) Fowler, in 2011.

Charlie is survived by his son, Charles Gregory Fowler, who was his pride and joy.

He was employed by the Johnson-Smith accounting firm and was a veteran of the

US Navy. Charlie attended Mass at St. Mary’s of the Redeemer, where a memorial service

is being planned, but due to his passing out of state, the date will be announced once

it is scheduled.

 

I choked back a tear, then handed the paper back to Chris. “It’s perfect, thank you, Chris.”

When Chris rushed off to send the notice to his dad, I turned to Jake. “Hey, doofus, what did you want, anyway?”

“Oh, I was looking for Tommy. He showed me their gym, and I’ve been working out. Not all of us can bench half a ton without working for it.”

I punched his shoulder and said, “Keep at it bud; if you work hard, you’ll catch up with Tommy in, oh… two hundred years or so.”

Tommy flexed and said, “Not a chance, human.”

We all laughed, and then Billy came in to say that lunch would be served at one because the prince was tied up in a meeting. I asked Tommy to get in touch with Frederick and check the status of his project. By this time, our resident toddler was exploring the new crib. I leaned down, grabbed a bottle, and handed it to Jake. It took him a second, then I got punched. Handling the bottle made me think of something, so I rang the bell for a footman.

When he knocked and entered, I asked him to get either Maggie or Sarah. Shortly, Maggie was back, nervous as ever.

“You asked for me, Me Lord?”

“I did, Maggie. Did anyone remember to wash the bottles and nipples?”

“Oh, saints preserve us, no, Me Lord. That completely slipped me mind. I’m terribly sorry. I’ll set to it straight away.”

“It’s just a simple oversight, Maggie. No harm done, but yes, please get at least one back to me as soon as possible. My son is due anytime.”

“Right away, Me Lord. I’ll have one washed and back to you in no time at all. And you’ll have me deepest apologies for the oversight. The little one will have what he needs before you know it.”

“I’m sure he will, Maggie, now off with you.”

She curtsied and said a final, “Aye, Me Lord.”

When she was gone, Jake looked at us and started to giggle. “Is she for real? Dude, this place is insane. Who has footmen?”

Slightly offended, I said, “The Prince of North America has footmen, Jake. Don’t forget, he deals with vampires who are centuries old, and they’re accustomed to things being done this way. And that girl has been faithfully serving her prince for over three hundred years. She was thrilled that I was pleased with the job she did, and you will not disrespect her by mocking her.”

Jake threw up his hands in surrender. “Hey, sorry dude.” Then, in a more serious tone, “You’re right. I guess I never looked at it that way. Honest, I’m sorry.”

“I didn’t mean to snap, bro; it’s been a rough twenty-four hours.”

Jake smirked and said, “Thank you, Colonel Understatement.”

Scott stepped between us and asked, “Should I get the pistols, and you two can meet at dawn?”

Jake and I exchanged a glance, and as if on cue, I grabbed Scott in a full nelson with my arms under his, then wrapped up behind his neck, exposing his armpits. Once I had him, Jake started tickling him. Soon, Scott was reduced to a wriggling, whining mess, begging us to stop. We did stop when there was a knock on the door.

“Enter,” I said for what felt like the thousandth time in two hours.

Sarah came in carrying the nylon clothes basket. She curtsied, put the onesies and shirts on a shelf in our dressing room, and asked, “Anyfink else, My Lord?”

I was about to say no when Scott said, “Yes, Sarah. We’ve completely forgotten that we need to make some of that formula. Could you do that for us, please?” He paused, then added, “Oh, and I’m not sure who to ask, but could we get a small refrigerator in here? To store it.”

“Don’t forget a way to warm it, My Lord,” Jake suggested.

Scott nodded, “Yes, a microwave maybe?”

Sarah looked at us like we were insane. After a minute, she said, “Forgive me, My Lords, but you can’t ‘eat the babe’s bottle wif a micky. Just ring, we bring one up in a jiffy.”

Jake handed a box of the powdered formula to Sarah who curtsied and left. He turned to us and asked, “Cockney?”

I turned to Tommy, who nodded, “And Maggie’s Irish.”

I turned to Billy and asked, “Speaking of accents, where did yours go, ya wee bairn?”

With a grin, he explained, “I can get rid of it when I want, and a Lord Steward certainly shouldn’t be saying things like wee bairn, now, should he, My Lord?” I laughed, then he asked, “And what about you? I hear you with Jake and everything’s dude and bro yet with Prince George you sound like a bloody toff.”

I slowly drew out the word “Well…” then added, “I am the one everyone keeps calling, My Lord, ain’t I?”

Billy buried his face in his hands as everyone laughed. “And since when do you call me, My Lord, Jake?”

With a shrug, he replied, “I figured it would make Sarah more comfortable if I was as deferential as everyone else.”

I checked the time and suggested we head to lunch. We were almost to the bottom of the stairs when Frederick called to me. “Baron Fowler, can you spare a moment, My Lord? In the green room?”

I turned to see him standing by the entrance to the blue room, the oval hall on the main floor. I asked, “Should I bring my Lord Steward? Or my Consort?”

“As you wish, My Lord. I don’t have a package, Sir, just a message.”

I asked everyone to wait and went to meet with Frederick. He ushered me into the green room and closed the door. “I’m extremely embarrassed, Greg, but we’ve hit a snag. We’re working on the solution, but your son won’t be here for another two hours.”

I raised an eyebrow and asked, “Do I want to know?” When he told me, I burst out laughing. It was just so stupid it was hilarious. “You mean to…” gasp… “You mean to tell me that you forgot a child seat?”

“I really am sorry, Greg. I’ll deal with the ones who—”

“No, Frederick, don’t punish anyone. How often do you have infants in this household? And child seats have only been around for the last forty years or so. You do have him, right? He’s safe?”

“Yes, Sir. I’d rather not go into detail, but he’s safe and being cared for by a nanny while they wait for our people to go buy a car seat.”

I couldn’t stop my grin, but I did stop laughing. I offered my hand and said, “Frederick, I meant what I said earlier; I will never forget my debt to you.”

He took my hand. “I appreciate that, Greg. I’ll be honest with you, I believe that, one day, my knowing you will benefit me in ways that neither of us can imagine.”

I stared into his eyes a moment. “Ya, know, I think I agree with you, but I think it’s mutual.” He smiled. “Oh, one more thing. Um, at the risk of stepping on your toes, what exactly are you?”

“Excuse me?”

I coughed, “Yeah, that sounds much better in my head. What I mean is, well, Tommy’s a Marshal, Billy’s a Steward and is addressed as Lord. What exactly is an adjutant? And how do common vampires address you?”

Frederick smiled and explained. “An adjutant is an administrator. In the modern military, the admin section is overseen by an Adjutant General. The current US Adjutant General is a Major General, but it’s typically a three star, rather than a two.”

“And we were told you’re the assistant?”

He winked and said, “Contrary to his public displays around most of the nobility, George is rather laid back. I am his AG in all but name, as his last died four hundred years before Europeans started taking over North America.”

I looked at Frederick in a different light now. It hit me, and I grinned, “I think you’re the one who likes the fiction of having a boss. As it stands, you can always say, ‘I’m just the assistant,’ and kick the can upstairs. Freud aside, what is the proper address for you?”

Frederick was examining me now. After a moment, he said, “Technically, it would be General or Sir if you’re subordinate to me. Regarding nobles, I believe only a baronet would properly call me Sir.”

“One last thing.” He raised an eyebrow. “If I had to guess, I would say that you met George’s father.”

“And I would say that you are either correct or not. My bet’s on not, but then again, I’m a bad gambler.” His wink told me all I needed to know. “I will say this, Greg Fowler, you are the most unique vampire I’ve ever met, so if you’re right, that’s saying a lot, isn’t it?”

“Get my son to me, safe. Am I clear, General?”

“Crystal, Sir. On my honor, he’s safe and will be here soon.”

I nodded, then turned, rejoined my mate and the others, and led them to the dining room. We all lingered until George entered. As he headed for his seat, the rest of us did the same, and after he sat, we followed suit. Once George was eating, everyone joined in and waited for George to begin the conversation.

George asked me, “Is my staff treating you right during your visit, Greg?”

“I’ve never been treated this good in my life, George. I especially want to commend an assistant cook named Maggie and a chambermaid named Sarah. They went above and beyond in assisting us with getting ready for our son. I would also like to commend your assistant adjutant. If it were up to me, that boy would get a promotion. It looks like he does all of his boss's work.”

From down the table, I heard Frederick’s muttered, “Asshole.”

George chuckled and said, “I’ll consider it, Greg; some other moves I need to make might affect that.” He turned to Billy and asked, “How are you enjoying my library, William?”

“Please, Sir, my friends call me Billy. And I’m enjoying your library very much.”

“Well, I’m going to make you an offer only open to three other vampires in the world, Billy. I want you to feel free to borrow any of my books at any time. I ask only that you make a note so I know where it is if I happen to go looking for it some sleepless night.”

Billy stammered, “I am.. I’m honored, George. I don’t know what to say.”

“Say you’ll take advantage of it and educate our new baron.”

Billy smiled and nodded. “I most certainly will. Do I have your permission to give him detention?”

Everyone laughed when George said, “Of course, but I prefer corporal punishment.”

Jake couldn’t resist. “I’ll spank you, George.”

George burst out laughing. When he could finally talk, he said, “Thank you, Jake, but I haven’t shared my bed with a man in three hundred years. For now, I’d say I’m a 2 on Kinsey.”

“Well, at least you’re not a zero. If you hadn’t guessed, I’m a 6.”

“We all know, Jake, and I’m sure you’ll find a nine to spend your life with,” I said.

George tried to slow our roll by asking Chris, “How do you deal with these clowns all day, every day?”

“Drugs help. Not to mention my plan to bury their bodies in twelve different state parks.” Chris deadpanned.

George seemed to know there was more. “Hold on, Chris, I only count the six of you. Oh, I guess Billy makes seven. Add in Tommy and Leonard, and you still only have nine. Who are the other three bodies?”

“Oh, you misunderstood. I don’t mean one body for each park. I mean an arm here, a leg there…”

George shook his head. “I might revoke your welcome, Greg. Your people are nuts.”

As this last round of laughter slowed and finally stopped, I heard something echoing in the entrance hall, but the echo made it hard to identify. It sounded like a fire alarm, but unlike any I’d heard. No one was reacting, so I doubted that was it. I also heard a few pairs of footsteps, and they were all moving slowly, so there was no emergency. By the time I realized what the sound was, I could see its source.

I stood, and my fork fell from my hand as I stood, paralyzed, watching a female vampire carrying... my son. I took my eyes off her for a second and saw Scott standing and frozen like me. I heard someone sob, then realized it was me. I was sobbing, and she kept getting closer, and for some reason, I couldn’t move. She was moving so slowly; why can’t she hurry up? Faster, damnit, move faster. She’s so far away.

Suddenly, I heard her ask, “Do you want to hold him, My Lord?”

Do I want to hold him? Is she INSANE? Of course I want to hold him! ‘Wait, hold him? How do you hold an infant? We’ll drop him. No, no, let mate take him, let companion take him.’ Hush, I can do this; we can do this.

She held him out; ‘our arms are betraying us.’ I put a hand under his neck and my other arm under his body. ‘stop. No. we’ll drop him.’ I pulled him to my chest and looked down at his face. ‘he’s… cute.’ Yes, he is. ‘he’s tiny.’ He is. ‘we must protect him.’ Yes, we must. ‘mate will help us’ Yes, he will. ‘we are happy’ Yes we are. ‘we are… crying?’

I felt Scott’s hand on my arm and finally pulled my gaze from my son and looked at my mate; I saw the glow on his face. I saw the tears rolling down his cheeks. I tried to speak but my throat was dry; my chest was tight. ‘ask him’ I cleared my throat and croaked, “Do you want to hold him?”

Scott looked up, shocked. Then he nodded. He gently put his hands where mine were and we successfully transferred our son from my arms to his. Our son… ‘OUR son… us and mate… our son’ Yeah… our son.

I heard a voice and looked up to see Sarah standing timidly by the door; in her hands was a bottle of formula. I knew she wasn’t going to move without a push, so I pushed. “Sarah,” I called out, “please bring me that bottle.”

She looked terrified but skittered through the dining room like a fawn, dodging a wolf pack. She curtsied and offered me the bottle, “My Lord, got the bottle for the young'un here, all nice and warm, just as y’asked.”

I took the bottle and thanked her. I watched, intrigued, as she navigated the dining room, avoiding eye contact with anyone seated or standing near the table. She curtsied four times before she finally got to the door and exited the room.

I turned back and handed the bottle to Scott and watched as he held the nipple to our son’s mouth. I smiled as he seemed to search for it a few times, then, when he found it, he groaned as he eagerly fed. The girl that had brought him to us was standing beside Scott, watching to make sure we didn’t kill the poor boy. After he had fed for a minute or two, she said Scott needed to stop and burp him. We both looked at her and asked, “Do what?”

She laughed and then taught us what she meant and how to burp a baby. After a few successful cycles of feeding and burping, she suggested we go to our room, and she would help us with diapers. I took the baby from Scott, and he stood. I realized I needed to ask George something, so I gave the boy back to Scott and told him I’d be up before he got the onesie off.

“It’s a bet.” He said as he and the nanny slowly made their way through the gang that wanted to get a view of the baby.

As soon as they were gone, I asked George, “Who is that nanny, and what’s her position in your clan, George?

He narrowed his eyes and asked, “Are you thinking about taking her from me?”

I didn’t sense any anger, nor did his voice express any, but his face did. I called his bluff. I shrugged and said, “I don’t know; what if I am?”

He let out a laugh and said, “Then I guess I’ll have to let her go.”

I nodded and said, “Alright, now seriously, is she someone that is vital to you? Does she have family here? I don’t want her to feel any pressure if she has reasons to stay.”

George smiled. “You’d do well to ask Frederick; he’s the one who brought her to me.”

After a pause, I replied, “Alright, thanks. I’ll ask him later; right now, I have diapers to change.”

I headed to our room, where I found Scott snapping the onesie around the baby’s diaper. With the nanny’s help, he put him into the bassinet, then turned and smiled at me. “I win”

I asked the nanny to give us a few minutes, and when she was gone, I sat on the loveseat with Scott at my side and watched our son sleeping. “We have two problems, and I need your help with both.”

Grabbing my hand, he asked, “Problems? What’s wrong, babe?”

“We have no idea how to care for a baby, Scott. We need help.”

Nodding, he replied, “We have help, babe; Mom and Mary are there. They’ll help us.”

I shook my head, saying, “No, Scott. We decided to raise him; they didn’t. We didn’t even discuss it with them. It’s not fair for us to ask them to take care of him while we’re at school or work; they have their own lives.”

“Then we get help. We can have someone teach us what we need to know,” he suggested.

“That doesn’t solve the issue of care when we’re busy with school or work; it doesn't help when I have things to do as a baron,” I argued.

Scott sighed, “And you’re not comfortable with a driver and security. How are you going to deal with having a nanny?”

I took a deep breath and said, “I wasn’t, but being here has shown me how much easier things can be with people to help. I’ve also realized that these people enjoy serving. I don’t know if I want to have the huge staff that George has, and I’m not ready for a valet, but I think we need to hire a nanny.”

Scott seemed stunned. “I agree.” He paused, then grinned. “Actually, I was trying to figure out how to bring this up. Will we have to have this conversation every time we add someone to the staff?”

I thought about this for a minute, then grinned at Scott. “No, we won’t. My first official declaration as a baron is that my consort is responsible for managing our staff until such time as he needs to appoint a manager.”

With a smirk, Scott said, “You realize you just gave me permission to hire a butler.”

Raising an eyebrow, I said, “When we need one, yes. Right now, I think you can manage three people.”

With a shake of his head, he replied, “No, right now, it’s only one. Tommy is your Chief Marshal; he answers only to you, and Leonard answers to him. And a nanny would answer to us, not the butler, if we get one.”

I gave a slight laugh, then said, “Well then, we need to interview a nanny, don’t we? After that, you can figure out what staff we need.”

“We need to figure out a lot of things before we start adding staff, Greg. Let’s just get a nanny and worry about the rest later.”

With a grin, I nodded and replied, “I agree, but I stand by my decree; you hire and manage staff. I’ll give you one accommodation; I’ll help you with the butler, once we get to that point.”

Scott sighed a huge sigh, then smirked. “Yes, My Lord.” After leaning in and giving me a peck on the cheek, he asked, “Should we start with Jenny?”

“Way ahead of you on that one, hon. I hinted to George that I’d like to ask her, but he said to talk to Frederick first.”

After another peck, this one on the lips, Scott sat back and asked, “And what is the second problem?”

“Well, we need to come up with a name, unless we’re just going to call him ‘boy’?”

With a laugh, Scott said, “That might get awkward if we have more. How about ‘boy one’?”

I punched his shoulder. “I’m serious, babe. Have you thought about it?”

With a shrug and shake of his head, he replied, “Most couples have months to think about this. We’ve had hours.’

I nodded. “Yes, but this is the hand we’ve been dealt. So, do you have any thoughts?”

Scott squeezed my hand and looked into my eyes. He looked concerned, and I wasn’t sure why, but I had a feeling. I gave him a weak smile and nodded. “Are you sure?” he asked.

I sighed as a tear ran down my cheek. “No, I’m not. In fact, I have a compromise if you’ll agree.” He squeezed my hand, and I went on. “If we name him Charles Andrew, he’ll grow up feeling like he’s a replacement. I don’t think we should do that to him, but I do want to honor Dad.”

“We could use just his middle name.”

I shook my head. “No. The only Andy I ever met was an asshat. What about James? Or Erich?”

“Opa would love that, but that’s not honoring Charlie.” Scott bit his lip, thinking. After a moment, I saw his eyes light up. “I think I’ve got it.”

When he told me, I smiled and took him into my arms. “It’s perfect.”

Copyright © 2023 Justin4Fun; All Rights Reserved.
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 
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Chapter Comments

6 hours ago, drsawzall said:

Let's see if the boys survive the first few days of changing nappies...

Mcr Teenagers GIF by My Chemical Romance
 

No problem, ready? Ready to breach. Oh lords, help us!

  • Haha 4
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Well, there may be hope for these two yet; they at least realize how in over their heads they are to start with.  LOL.

I wonder where the Viscount went?  I do love the interplay with this group and even how well they mesh with the Prince and his primary advisors, et al.  Of course, some of that is that the Prince is rather laid back but still.

Great update, and can't wait for the next one.

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Aww, look at the boys growing and maturing as the need arises.

Yes, Scott's ticklish. Something tells me Jake is too, he's just too cute and playful. :gikkle:

Edited by Ajbt2001
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On 12/9/2023 at 9:30 AM, drsawzall said:

Let's see if the boys survive the first few days of changing nappies...

Have you forgotten about the golden showers?

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Really nice dialog, and I like the humor. Reads effortlessly.

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