Chapter Twenty One
We sat in the dining room for a late lunch and as I look around the table, my mother's face is one I don't anticipate seeing among our family gatherings.
Leah sat quietly picking at the food she has been focusing on since grandpa broke the news about bringing her father on board to work with my dad.
Dad ventures when he choose to slip away from Branson has always flopped and even though she doesn't know that, she's skeptical about him, especially after his last business partner was the same person who framed her father.
"Hey," I whispered, poking her waist with a light tickle.
Jerking upright, Leah frowns at me in surprise as I brought her out of her daydreaming.
Raising her eyebrows.
"What?" She mouths.
Rolling my eyes around the table, she followed my gaze to see to see all eyes focusing expectantly at her.
Returning her gaze on meet me, "sorry, I think I fell asleep there," she jokes, waiting for me to fill in the blanks.
"Grandpa was asking you something." I told her, nodding in his direction at the other end of the table.
Smiling awkwardly at grandpa. "I'm sorry," she apologizes, glaring at my light chuckle.
"I was wondering if you have started shopping for my great-grandson yet?" Grandpa asks his original question.
Leah frowned at me, "great-grandson?" She repeats, turning to Jade.
Laughing cheerfully in his gruff voice, "of course," grandpa tells her. "I must meet my grandson's heir so that I can die peacefully." Grandpa added.
Leah's frowns deepens, "oh please you're not going anywhere anytime soon because you still have to spoil Jade's kids." She winks at Jade, who immediately starts blushing.
All eyes were now focus on Jade.
Is my sister pregnant?
From the confusion on Michael's face, I doubt it but grandpa already has a huge grin dancing on his face.
"Jade?" Dad, with a pleased smile, tries to get Jade's attention.
Shaking her head quickly, "no, no" she glares playfully at Leah. "No, no" Jade repeats picking up her wine glass. "No babies yet." She laughs.
Michael sighs in relief and I can see the smile on dad's face dropped at Jade's words.
Dad's interested in having grand babies? I couldn't help but wonder until I caught Leah's troubled expression as she stared at him.
"Hey," I nudge her lightly but she kept her eyes on my father who sat opposite her, next to Jade.
"Mr. Branson," Leah called for dad's attention, drawing everyone's attention, especially her father.
Lifting his eyes to Leah with a soft gentle smile, something I have notice everytime he looks at her.
Lowering her eyes for a brief second before staring at him with renewed confidence.
"I don't know what arrangement you've made with my father but I don't trust you because of your association with a man who tried to destroy my father and me." Without wavering, Leah held his gaze with dad being the first to look away, in embarrassment.
No one spoke to rebuke Leah nor to defend dad.
With his head bent, dad pushes back his chair when Leah broke the silence once again.
"Mr. Branson, I am not asking you to leave because this is your son's home and you belong here." Leah's words stopped dad, who lifted sad eyes to Leah.
"What I need to know is that all ties to the Ambrose family has been severed and nothing will come back to hurt my family." Leah says, finally turning to the right, where I am seated beside her.
Before I could open my mouth, grandpa spoke.
"Leah," grandpa voice is always soft and gentle when he speaks to grandma, Jade and now Leah!
Giving me a small smile, Leah turns her attention of grandpa.
When grandpa had her attention, he gives dad a fleeting glance, "I promise you that I am also a part of the business arrangement between your father and your father-in-law and my aim is not to give you any stress because," nodding with a smirk at me, grandpa continues. "Your husband would kick you old ass straight into a retirement home." Grandpa laughs, trying to lighten Leah and dad's mood.
Smiling brightly, "okay." Leah trusting grandpa with her life. "I have one question though," she says, looking around the table. "What has become of the people who have become a torn in my flesh?" Grandpa nods to me because this is the one that could upset her.
Finally my wife did more than nibble on her food when grandpa spoke again.
Shaking my head, I stopped grandpa and I change the topic.
This is a discussion I will have with Leah privately so that no one hears her yelling at me.
"That's a topic for dessert," Andrew chuckles, aware that stressing his daughter out is not something we want right now.
"Well it should be better than cheesecake, which is Leah's favorite dessert these days." Vinnie jokes.
Shaking her head, "correction my friend, it's my baby's favorite dessert." Lifting her chin, Leah gives Vinnie a smug smile but her smile didn't reach her eyes.
Grandpa changed the conversation to babies and how horrible Jade and I were while Andrew boasted about his well behave daughter.
Leah was sitting on the bed waiting on me to exit the shower and from her stance, I knew it's time to come clean.
With water dripping down my body, I nod to the changing room.
"Do I get to dry and change or you want to do this now?" Already on defense mode, I threw the ball in her court and in this situation with the Carl Ambrose, Leah will call the shots.
"I want you to end whatever's going on with Ambrose, now!" She orders.