Fallen Angel Part 4

Christmas Mircales

Christmas morning has finally fallen upon Gracie. Snow was everywhere making it look like it was out of a fairytale book. Christmas morning has finally fallen upon Gracie. Snow was everywhere making it look like it was out of a fairytale book Sarah was so excited she couldn’t wait for the Christmas magic to begin. This year was a special year. Not only did she get her birthday wish came true, she finally has received her Christmas gift she prayed for one year ago. God has blessed her with having one of his angels to be her mother and to care and love her father. Sarah couldn’t thank God enough to have Monica in her life. Sarah went to the tree and as always looks at the gifts and the lights around her. Next year, she will have a new baby brother or sister to join this moment with her. She is so excited to be a big sister to the newest addition to her family, and she can’t wait for the birthing.

Sarah waited for her father to get up at his usual Christmas morning time. However, this year was different. He never got up at his usual 7:30 in the morning routine. Having her father being so happily married now, it was hard for making her father leave the bed. Sarah was growing very impatient with the Christmas celebration. She decides to go up to her parents’ bedroom to personally wake them up herself.

Griffin slept peacefully next to his wife. His hand lies across her swollen belly of the baby, and her fingers laced with his. Monica was still in a deep slumber when Griffin awoke. He looks at his sleeping wife, and he couldn’t help but to smile and nuzzle his nose on the back of her neck. Griffin softly kisses her neck and shoulders as he felt Monica slowly coming out of her sleep world.

“Griffin….” Monica giggled as she felt his kisses growing more intense.

“Morning my sweet Monica.” Griffin smiles and places a small red holly behind her ear. And then Monica tugs on his shirt to have him climb on top of her to play around a bit.

In between kisses, Monica managed to say, “Merry Christmas, Roan.”

Griffin pulls back to stare into her beautiful and sexy brown eyes. He felt Monica roaming her fingers through his medium length hair, as he slides his hands to her sides and softly stroking the side of her ribs as well as her soft sexy shoulders. For the first time, Monica was not flinching from his touch. Surprisingly she was enjoying it. He even felt her legs guiding his to rest between them. Then in the heat of the moment, Griffin felt her lips crashing onto his in a smooth and seductive way. Just before Monica pulls them into a hot passionate kiss, there was a soft knock on the door, which made Griffin fall back on the bed to lie beside Monica.

3 seconds later their daughter burst through the door. “Oh, so you guys are up. Come on It’s Christmas let’s get the celebration started I’ve been waiting up for almost an hour now!!! Come on let’s go..let’s go…let’s go..” Sarah said with quickness in her voice mixed with excitement. She heads down the stairs, as she made noises as she went down.

Griffin and Monica both end up giggling at their daughter’s excitement. Monica pulls the covers back revealing her sexy female frame and heads to the closet to find her brown robe. Griffin was right beside her kissing her shoulders. Monica smiles at him and carefully pulls his navy blue robe from the hook beside hers. “Is she always like this, for Christmas?” Monica asks as she hands her husband his robe.

“Every year. Although, this year, she seems more hyperactive than normal.” Griffin said as he ties the robe around him.

Monica smiles and wraps her arms around his waist, “Any ideas to why she is hyperactive?”

“I can name a few,” Griffin said as he inches his face towards hers. Monica smiles as their lips touched. She felt his arms around her as he pulls her closer to him until the ends of her breast were brushed up against his chest. Monica goes in deeper to kiss him, as she pulls him to the door of their closet. They continue to kiss each other for another minute or so until Monica pulls away.

“I would go deeper, and longer but knowing how Sarah wants Christmas to start, it’s best if we keep it short.” Monica smiles then she looks deep into Griffin’s eyes. “Besides, I have a long overdue Christmas gift for you later on tonight.”

Griffin’s eyes lit up to that idea, “What overdue Christmas gift?”

Monica giggles as she kisses his cheek, “You’ll find out, later… “ Monica pulls back a little as she smiles to him. Then she turns and leaves their room to go down to join Sarah for Christmas.

Griffin stood there, and in his mind, he stated to himself, damn. I’m one lucky guy, to be in love with a woman like her. Monica is just so sexy sometimes, and it makes me proud to be her man. Griffin shook his head as he too joins Sarah and his wife down in the living room to start Christmas morning.

Sarah was by the Christmas tree when Monica appeared in the living room. Not long did her father come following after her. “Sarah, you know that stockings are usually first, then..”

“I know daddy. I’m just curious to find such big boxes.” Sarah giggles as she goes and examines the gifts that have her name on it. Some of the gifts she can tell are from her father, and some are from Monica. She can tell because Monica has such beautiful handwriting unlike her father’s.

Monica goes to the fire and carefully lights it, to give it a more Christmas feeling in the room. Afterward, she sits down on the couch as she watches Sarah play around with the gifts. “Merry Christmas my sweet Sarah.”

Sarah looks up and smiles brightly at Monica, “Merry Christmas to you too….mom.”

Monica smiles at her words. This will be Monica’s first time of celebrating Christmas with the family that she loves. Griffin soon sat down next to his wife as he nods to his daughter to open up her stocking gifts. Sarah jumped up from her spot and dashes over to the mantle as a blazing fire glowed from the fireplace making this moment feeling warm and magical. She took her stocking off the mantle and sat down on the floor beside the fire.

Griffin smiles at his daughter’s smiling face as he watches her open the gifts. Griffin felt kind of bad that he had no stocking gift ideas for Monica. But then again, she doesn’t have a stocking of her own. However, Monica doesn’t need to have gifts for Christmas. She told him last night that the only gift she is willing to receive is joy and love from him and Sarah. To her, nothing earthly can ever satisfy her. Only the love and happiness, from her family and friends, can be her Christmas presents.

As soon as Sarah dove into her stocking gifts Monica gets up and goes over to the mantle to give her husband his stocking. Griffin sets down the camcorder as he looks at her, “I normally don’t get any stocking stuffers.”

Monica smiles to him as she moves to her spot, “I know, but I did some Christmas shopping a few weeks ago, and part of it was your stocking stuffers. Plus Sarah also helped me out a bit. So go on.”

Sarah pauses in the opening of her gifts as she too pressures her father into opening his small presents in his stocking, “Come on dad its part of Christmas.”

Griffin looks at his family then he nods as Monica sets down the camcorder. Griffin open all 6 of his stocking stuffers, and he had to admit, Monica was good at doing Christmas shopping. He looks to her and smiles, “Thank you both of you..”

“You’re welcome, daddy. Hope you like it…some of the things in there were out of my own allowance.” Sarah smiles.

Griffin smiles at his daughter and looks at his wife. Then he plants a small kiss on her cheek and whispers in her ear, “I’ll give you a proper thank you later.”

Monica giggles to that, “I’ll take up the offer.”

Their moment was soon broken when Sarah jumps up and goes to the kitchen. Monica and Griffin follow their daughter in the kitchen with Sarah to have some bagels and toast. When the small breakfast was made Sarah looks at her two parents, “You know, next Christmas there will be another family member to join us.”

Monica smiles at her, “Yes we know.”

“Do we know what the baby will be? A boy? A girl” Sarah asks.

Monica looks up from buttering her toast, “We will know soon.”

Sarah looks down at the bowl of fruit and takes out an apple. Then she looks at her mother, “I know it’s going to be a girl.”

Griffin looks at his daughter, “And how do you know it is going to be what you think it is?”

Sarah pause in eating her apple, “I just have a feeling that it is going to be a girl. I always wanted to have a sister.”

Monica smiles in eating her toast, “Well we will find out three days from now if it is a boy or a girl.”

Sarah looks at her father, “Well I don’t care what it is. All I know is I will love him or her as any big sister would. Well. Shall we continue, on with Christmas.”

Monica looks at Griffin who nods and takes the plate of bagels into the living room. Sarah was already at the base of the Christmas tree when Monica and Griffin settle down on the couch. Sarah waited patiently for her parents to give her the okay to start opening gifts under the Christmas tree. Monica looks to Griffin, and he lingers a bit longer. Monica looks at him, “Oh, come on honey. Let Sarah start opening gifts before her excitement consumes her.”

Griffin gives a little laugh and then nods to his daughter, “Okay, Sarah you can start.”

Monica had the camcorder ready as she records this moment. Griffin looks at his wife, as Sarah opens her first gift. He looked at his smiling wife and daughter and was spellbound by this moment of seeing them together like this.

Sarah looks at her set of new Harry Potter films as she glances up at her father, “Thank you, daddy.”

Next, it was Monica’s turn, Sarah hands her mother two small gifts. With a surprised look, she looks at her daughter, “Sarah, you don’t have to..”

“I wanted to you deserve to have gifts too, you are now part of the family..” Sarah smiles “Go on open it.”

Monica unwraps the lace string on one of the gifts. It was a small white box, and Monica carefully pulls the top off. Inside was a small picture of Sarah as a baby holding a white angel bear. Monica looks up at her daughter, “Oh, Sarah. This is beautiful.”

“There’s more to it open the other one.” Sarah smiles.

Monica did as what Sarah requested and in the second one was a picture frame that had little angels sounding the border, as well as a small necklace that held a white dove with two hearts. One of the hearts has an S on it, and the other is an M. Sarah also hands out another small heart that is left blank. Monica looks at her, and Sarah answers her confused look, “It’s for the new baby. It’s blank on purpose so that when you and daddy decide on a name, you can take this to the jewelry department and have them engrave the first letter of the name you decided on. This is one of my expensive gifts, but I wanted to give you something special.”

Monica looks at her daughter and sets the gifts on the small table, as she embraces her daughter, “Oh Sarah, these gifts are precious to me. Thank you so very much.” Monica then looks to Griffin who was smiling at his daughter’s gifts to his wife. She knew that he had something to do with it.

The next hour flew by, and all the gifts were opened. Monica was happy to see her daughter already engaging in one of her new books, as she sits next to the fire. Griffin came back with his cup of coffee and Monica’s tea. Monica looks at her husband, “Is she happy?”

Griffin looks at his daughter, as she paid no attention to the world around her. Griffin looks at his wife and nods, “Yeah. I think that this is the best Christmas she had in a long time. Plus, it is mine as well.”

Monica smiles at him, “Mine too.” Monica then sets her tea aside as she hands Griffin one last gift. “Griffin, there is one other gift I have for you.”

Griffin took his gaze off his daughter and looked at Monica, “I thought you were going to save that for you know…later.”

Monica smiles brighten at his comment, “no, not that kind of gift. That I still plan to give to you later on tonight, when we are alone.” Monica then drops her smile a bit as she hands a red warped up present to her husband. She then looks at him, and softly she stated, “This is from your brother. Just before he died, he came to visit me in the hospital while you were in a coma. He wanted to say how sorry he was for what he had done, and he hoped that you would forgive him. And then he handed me this…” Monica pauses as she gently slides the present to her husband. “He said that you should have this more than him.”

Griffin then looks at her with a confused look but in the same time curious. Griffin then sets down his coffee as he turns to face Monica as he gently took the gift she offered to him. He opens it up and found an old childhood like box.

Inside the box was an old towel that used to have some cartoon figure. Griffin unwraps it and inside was a World War I medal with an old Irish flag that was neatly folded up and tucked under the World War I medal. Next to the medal was an old worn out picture of his grandfather in his uniform and a small black dairy that contains all of his grandfather’s journals and poems that he wrote while he was in the war.

Griffin touches it, and small tears came out of his eyes. Monica looks up at him and smiles to her husband’s memory. “What is it?” Monica softly asks.

Griffin took a moment then he wipes his eyes, “This used to belong to my grandfather. My brother loved the heroic story of how my grandfather served in the Irish Army during World War I, and how he saved over 50 men from drowning in the swamp near the fire zone. My brother was so moved by my grandfather’s story, that he wanted to join the US Army during Vietnam, but my mother said, ‘over my dead body.’”

Monica smiles to that, “Did he ever join?”

“No, he was too young, and by the time he was old enough the war was over,” Griffin stated. “But he never forgot my grandfather’s heroic tale that day. When my grandmother died, my father gave this stuff to Lenny on his 19th birthday, just before he got married.” Griffin looked at his wife, and he kisses her cheek, “Thank you, this is the best Christmas gift, I’ve gotten in a long time. Well that, and….” Griffin pauses as he looks into Monica’s twinkling eyes and smiling face, “you.”

Monica looks into his beautiful blue eyes, “You’re welcome, Roan…” Monica turns to him and kisses him lightly on the lips. Monica kisses him for a heartbeat or so and then snuggles down in his chest as they watch the glow of the Christmas tree and the crackling fire.

Then a half hour later, everyone gathered in the car and headed out to Chris’s house for another Christmas celebration. Sarah flung out of the car like a hound dog on a hunt, and dashes through the snow and up the steps to the old brown porch to her second home. Monica smiles at her adoptive daughter as her excitement got the best of her. Griffin hands Monica one sack of gifts as he takes hold of the other. Together they go into Chris’s house when a new member soon greets them of the family.

“Kody down boy!” Chris yells at the dog.

Chris takes hold of the sack of gifts from Monica. As Griffin follows in after her, “So you have a dog now.” Griffin asks.

“Yeah, my wife surprises the kids with it Christmas morning. Not real thrilled about the idea, but she says I need a new ‘partner’ to the job.” Chris stated.

Monica chuckles as she watches Chris shake his head. Griffin took off his winter coat as well as Monica’s and hands Chris their coats. “Not liking your partner on the job?”

Chris sighs, “Personally, he is a bit too old for me. Like I’m patrolling with my grandfather. I stated to her the other day that I need some one young so I can bark orders at.”

Griffin laughs, “Well you defiantly got someone very young, and you have lots of orders to give out to that little runt.”

“Yeah tell me about it.” Chris jokes as they make their way to the living room.

“So what kind of dog is it?” Monica asks.

“It’s a Husky, mixed with a little bit of a golden lab. He is about 14 weeks old, so there is lots of training to be done for the little rascal. I wanted to name him Butch or Lee, but my kids beat me to it. They want to call him Kody off of one of Emmaline’s favorite animated films.” Chris stated. “Anyways Merry Christmas to you guys.”

“Merry Christmas to you too.” Monica and Griffin stated.

“Well you guys missed the annual breakfast feast, so for now, you can just hang out in the living room,” Chris stated. “Everyone should be coming in shortly.”

“Sounds good.” Griffin smiles and helps his wife by placing each gift around the big Christmas tree.

“Do you think we should let you know…” Monica hints to the dog.

“I think we already covered this topic last night,” Griffin stated back.

“You’re right, but still, it would be nice to have a dog around, for Sarah to play with,” Monica said as she places gifts under the tree.

“Monica, we’ve been through this, I can’t afford a dog, not with the baby on the way.” Griffin eyes her.

“I know Roan. I know..” Monica places her hand on his.

Once Monica and Griffin place their gifts under the tree, people started to flow in the room. Kerry goes over and greets both Monica and Griffin, “Oh finally you guys came over, you missed at breakfast. You never miss breakfast, Roan!”

Griffin smiles, “Well, wanted to relax some in my own home.”

“Oh sure, you do…” Kerry giggles, as Griffin gives her a playful shove.

Monica then hugs her as they both exchanged a greeting. Monica then sits down next to Griffin and laces her fingers with his to watch the Christmas celebration and joy from everyone. Sarah was by Julia petting the dog as the puppy wags his tail for excitement. Chris and Brian came into the room as well as Kristin, Kurt, Sandy and her kids. Monica leans her head back on Griffin’s broad chest as Chris and Brian nod for the kids to dig in to find their gifts. This time Monica didn’t feel excluded from this event, in fact watching the kid’s faces light up really made her night.

Kerry came by and places some presents for both Monica and Griffin. “It’s from both me and Brian.”

Monica looks to her husband, “I wonder what it could be?”

Griffin set down his glass of ice tea and held the other end of the gift. Monica and Griffin both peal back the wrapping paper and soon found a box that contained a picture of a crib. Monica looks up at Kerry with warmth in her eyes, “Oh this is wonderful. But you do realize I’m not due for another six months or so.”

Brian came by next to his wife, “We know. But we figure this is one of the baby items you guys can cross off your list. We all know how expensive it can get.”

“Trust me, Monica, the baby will come faster then you realize.” Kerry pointed out.

Monica smiles and both Griffin and Monica said, “Thank you. Both of you, it’s a very thoughtful gift.”

“You’re welcome, and if you need any ideas about a nursery room, we are willing to help out,” Kerry suggests.

Monica puts aside the box for the baby’s crib when the doorbell rings. Monica sets aside the remaining gifts as Griffin looks to her, “Who could that be?”

“I don’t know maybe your father? I’ll go answer it.” Monica kisses his cheek before she leaves to answer the door.

Monica answers the door, and to her surprise was Crystal standing on the porch with a bag of Christmas presents. “Crystal?”

Crystal looks at Monica, “I ah….I just came by to..”

“Monica, are you warming the neighborhood or….Crystal, what a surprise that you are here?” Kerry stated.

Crystal feeling very outcasted by this calmly retreats to her car, “Never mind…this is a mistake.”

Monica surprisingly rushes out the door to get Crystal to come back, “Crystal wait!”

“No! I can’t go through with this. Nobody wants me around.” Crystal turns to look at her. “Especially your husband.”

“Crystal that’s not true,” Monica stated.

“Really? I see it in his eyes, he hates me, and I don’t blame him. I hate myself for walking out on him. And same goes with Kerry and everybody else in this town!” Crystal started to tear up and cry. “And you, you out of all people should hate me, for me coming back in, and try to steal Sarah away. And yet you want me in the house. Why! Why on earth do you want to share Christmas morning with your husband’s ex.”

Monica waited for Crystal to stop ranting, “I don’t hate you, Crystal.”

“Bullshit!” Crystal latches out.

“I don’t hate you. A part of me is still angry for what you put your own daughter through, not to mention Roan, but another part of me still sees you as…” Monica calmly explains.

“As a selfish bitch.” Crystal stated.

“As a person who has been going through life without having to be loved.” Monica finishes ignoring Crystal’s negative outburst.

This shocked Crystal. She was speechless at what Monica had just said. “What?”

“Crystal, I don’t want to fight you. And the reason why I’ve invited you, was because Sarah asked me to.” Monica confesses.

“What? When?” Crystal stated.

“Shortly after you gave up your claim. She is willing to re-build her relationship with you.” Monica drops her gaze a bit. “Come have Christmas with you little girl.”

Crystal then nods as she follows a pace behind Monica as Monica leads her into the house. Monica then tells her, “Everyone is in the living room.” Crystal nods as she took a moment then follows Monica.

Monica had just returned to her spot, as the room was alive with laughter and conversation. Griffin kisses Monica lightly and then shows her some of the stuff. Then he looks to her, “So who was at the door?”

Monica didn’t have to answer his question, because the look on his face gave it away, “why is she here hon.”

“I invited her.” Monica calmly stated.

Griffin looks at her, “What? Why, why would you do that?”

“For Sarah,” Monica confesses. Griffin didn’t look at his wife, he just shook his head and went off to another room. “Roan..” Monica soon leaves her spot to follow him.

Crystal watches from a distance at her ex-husband. She knew he would be the hardest to re-build the once good friendship she had with him, although a soft cry came from her daughter as Sarah came to hug her mom. Her daughter is the one distraction that kept her emotions away from what she was feeling with her unresolved pain from her ex. “Hey pumpkin, look what I got you?”

Monica follows Griffin to the indoor patio of Chris’s house. There she sees him at the window with his hands in his face as he stares out the window. Griffin turns around to look at her. Monica kept her distance from him sensing he is angry, “I’m sorry…Roan…”

Griffin didn’t look at her, and it killed Monica at that moment. He stares at the wall behind her. Then he looks at her, “I still can’t be in the same room as her Monica. I can’t!”

Monica took a step closer to him and didn’t say anything. Griffin then shifts his gaze and stares out the window as the sun highlighted his face. Once Monica was standing beside him, Griffin looks at her, “The reason why I have a hard time forgiving her is what she had done to me.”

“I know. You told me that you caught her cheating on you.” Monica stated.

“Yes. She then told me that had multiple affairs. I still have a hard time to be in the same room with her. How someone I trusted, said my vows to, betrayed me with another man while we were married.”

“Does Sarah know about this?” Monica asks.

“No. She was only three at the time. I tried for months to act like we were a family. But since that night, I completely lost my trust in her. I transferred out of that unit and came to Chris’s prescient. Never wanted to deal with that work place again. Crystal tried for years to say how sorry she was, and we had multiple fights. But her sorry didn’t erase the damage that she put our family through. Then one night when I was ready to start trusting her again, I came home from work and found our five-year-old daughter screaming and crying, as Crystal never came back from her work. I found all of her things gone in our room and a note in the bathroom as she said goodbye.” Griffin took deep breaths as he explains the pain he had to go through.

Monica had tears falling down from her eyes as Griffin shared part of his painful past to her. Griffin continues on, “That night I called everyone that I knew, I called her uncle and aunt, Mrs. Kathy, Kerry, Chris, and her work. One of her co-workers said that she quit her firm, and was driving off. I begged her to tell me where she was going, but her co-worker shrugged. Then I knew she left for good, leaving me alone to raise our daughter. She took the easy way out Monica by running away from her problems than fixing it. That is why I still am still hurting, and angry towards her.”

Monica wipes her tears away as she softly clears her throat. “Well, this was my mistake of inviting her to this event. I can go and…”

“No don’t…you were being you and trying to rebuild broken hearts with love again.” Griffin half smiles to that. “Which is one of the qualities that made me fell in love with you. You show an act of love and kindness towards people and try to rebuild it with love. It’s what my mother would have done if she was still alive.”

Monica smiles at him and laces her fingers to his, “It’s an old habit that won’t die. I guess I was still thinking like an angel, and not really realizing how much this could hurt you in the process, and I’m sorry about that, truly I am.”

Griffin puts a lock of reddish brown hair back behind Monica’s ear, as a real smile crept on his face, “It’s that habit that got me to believe in what real love is.”

Monica returns his smile, and he pulls her to him and slowly moves in and tenderly crashes his lips on hers. Monica melted as he kisses her. She places her arms around his neck as moves in deeper. Monica lets out a small giggle as he stops kissing her so deeply. Griffin pulls back and looks at her, “What is so funny?”

Monica still giggling stated, “This is the same moment we had last year, but without the kissing.”

Griffin looks and she was right, around this time last year, he gave her the necklace and was falling in love with her. Griffin looks at Monica, and a small giggle comes out of him as well, “You’re right. Didn’t realize that..”

Monica looks at him and returns his smile. “Honey, I know she has caused you a great deal of pain, of what she has done to you. But instead of holding onto that anger, try and forgive her. You don’t have to be friends, but you also don’t need to hold a grudge either. Otherwise, it will consume you, and I don’t want to see you in constant pain. I’m not excessing for what your ex-wife did, but you holding onto this anger sweetheart, is making it worse for you. Forgiving someone for his or her wrongdoing is a step toward healing. And I can tell, you never really forgave her.”

Griffin looks away from his wife, as he does not want to admit that she was right. Griffin let out a heavy sigh, “Just, so hard to do Monica.”

Monica gave a kind smile to him, “I never said forgiving someone is ever easy, Roan. It isn’t some magic formula that will take away all the pain. It is a hard road to travel down, and it goes in stages.” Monica pauses as she places her hand on his chest, “But can you at least try, your daughter is already trying to forgive her, and I as well. She is still human, Roan, and she needs to be shown what love is, just like what I showed you, last year. And love is a powerful thing that conquers hate every time.”

Griffin looks eye to eye with his wife, “But where do I start, or how do I forgive her?”

Monica looks at him, “First recognized the hurt and anger you feel, and let it go. It is a slow process, honey.Baby steps. In due time it will be easier. ” Monica pulls away slightly from him as she looks in the direction where the company is at. “Well…shall we head back…..you don’t have even to have to talk with her honey. It’s Christmas, and there are other people in the room you can be engaged with besides her. And there is me. Okay, come on.” Griffin nods as she nudges him to go, he then smiles at her and kisses her on the cheek.

Sarah opens up the gifts that her mother gave her, “Thanks, mom…I really missed this.”

“I did to sweetheart.” Crystal stated as she smiles at her. Crystal looks at her daughter, “Every Christmas Eve I always wished you a happy Christmas.”

Sarah then looks at her, “Really?”

“There wasn’t a day that goes by that I didn’t think of you for having you for Christmas.” Crystal smiles, but her smile soon fades.

“Then why didn’t you come for me?” Sarah asks.

“Sweetheart. I don’t know...I guess I just got scared and made a mistake I wish I hadn’t made.” Crystal stated as she looks in the direction of where Monica and Griffin were at talking with their friends.

Sarah soon picks up on it, “You mean, leaving daddy.”

Crystal takes her gaze off Griffin and refocuses them on her daughter, “That and most of all you.”

Sarah asks the daring question, “Are you still in love with daddy?”

Crystal hesitates for a moment. Then looking into her daughter’s eyes, there was sugar coating the truth. “Yes. I have and will always be in love with your father.”

Sarah then looks down and didn’t meet her mother’s gaze. Crystal then puts a finger under her daughter’s chin, “But your father has someone else to give his love to and to receive the love in return. Your father deserves someone better than me, “ Crystal pauses and looks in the direction of her ex-husband and Monica then back at her daughter, “and I think he has found that.” Crystal took her gaze off her daughter and looked at Griffin who is holding Monica near him, and smiling a lovely smile with Monica in his arms. Seeing him looking at Monica like that, hurt her a bit, but she knows he is better off with Monica than with her.

Sarah looks and sees her father smiling with Monica beside him and then Julia calls her name, “Come on Sarah, let’s take Kody out and have him pull the sled.”

“Okay!” Sarah gets up, but she turns to look at her mother, and then unexpectedly she hugs her mother, “Thank you for everything. Mom. You have made so many Christmas wishes come true.”

Crystal smiles and hugs her right back, “You’re welcome Sarah.” Crystal gets up and moves to watch her daughter play in the snow with her best friend.

Monica leaves the crowd behind her as she looks at Crystal who is watching the kids play outside with the new puppy. “Thought you could use some coffee.”

Crystal turns to look at her, “Oh thanks.”

Monica sits down next to her, watching the kids play beside the fireplace. “Thank you for staying it made Sarah’s day.”

“It may make Sarah’s day, but I saw the look in Roan’s eyes when I came in. I hurt him badly that I don’t think he will ever forgive me. I don’t even forgive myself, and I don’t know… I feel so alone than I ever was before. I ruin the one good thing in my life, and now I feel like there is nothing good for me here anymore.” Crystal confesses.

Monica looks at Sarah then back at Crystal, “You have something good Crystal. Sarah doesn’t think you are the wicked witch of the west. You have a gifted daughter down there. She is doesn’t think that you are a horrible person.”

“Yeah but Roan still does. I don’t blame him. I’m guessing he shared with you what I have done to him, that makes me feel like one of the scumbags he locks up.” Crystal admitted.

“He did yes before we got engaged. But he too is working on trying to forgive you as well.” Monica stated.

“Sure.” Crystal stated as she takes a sip of her coffee.

Monica then looks at her husband’s ex-wife, “Can I ask you a question.”

Crystal looks back at her, “Depends on what it is?”

“Why did you leave Roan and Sarah the night you left Gracie, New York?” Monica asks.

Crystal was stunned at the moment then she responded, “To tell you the truth, I don’t know. I guess it’s something I’ve learned when growing up or what I was modeled as a young child by my parents. When I royally fucked up my life, I tend to run from it, and start all over and never really facing the issue. And in that processes, I leave behind broken hearts. Roan didn’t do anything wrong. It was all me. I’ve never really did understand what love was until I realize what I had lost.” A sad look came over her face. “You are a lucky woman, to be loved by him. Sorry, I came off hostile toward you, it’s just the way I am.”

Monica gave a kind smile, “It’s your way of dealing with your pain. You don’t want to feel, because then it will make you feel vulnerable and broken-hearted.”

Crystal gave a sarcastic laugh, “What so now you’re my shrink?”

“No, but I have worked with lots of people like you in my past who follow the same patterns,” Monica stated.

Crystal looks genuinely into Monica’s eyes, and soon there was something in those depths that made Crystal want to run away. An unfamiliar love that she is not comfortable with. It has the same glow that Gloria has. Crystal then pushes it aside and thinking that that is preposterous. Crystal then turns to Monica and a for the first time a soft smile came on her face, “Well…I got to go. Thanks for the invite, you were right it did give me a chance to re-build my relationship with my daughter. You are something Monica I’ll give you that. I now understand why my ex-husband and my child like you so much. You know how to get people to like you, by showing kindness to them.”

Monica returns her smile, “Thanks. Crystal…if you open your heart and learn to love yourself, good things will follow. You are still worth loving in this world, don’t let hate rule your life.”

Crystal let Monica’s words sink in, and she nods, and a soft smile came on her face again, “Merry Christmas Monica.”

“Merry Christmas to you too,” Monica replies. Monica watches as Crystal gave her goodbye to her daughter, and then walks off.

As soon as Crystal left, Monica gets up and looks to her husband, “Well, since it’s about 8:30 at night, shall we head home.”

“Yeah, I guess so. Don’t want to be late for your baby appointment.” Griffin stated.

“Yeah.” Monica smiles as she makes her rounds to say goodbye and her thank yous.

“Thank you for the gift’s Kerry and the crib.” Monica smiles.

“You’re welcome. Merry Christmas.” Kerry smiles and embraces her into a hug.

Chris came and interrupts Monica’s goodbye to his sister, “Wait, there is one Christmas gift I’m still hoping to see.”

“We already exchanged all the gifts Chris, what more of a gift do you need?” Kerry stated.

Chris chuckles as he pulls Griffin to his wife, “Since you two didn’t give much of a kiss last year, hopefully, this year will be better.”

“Oh come on Chris. We don’t need to do the mistletoe thing again.” Griffin stated.

“Sure we do,” Chris stated.

Kerry rolls her eyes, “Better do it, Roan, my brother, won’t let you leave unless he gets what he wants. Amuse him, please!”

Griffin smiles and then looks to his wife, and Monica nods.

Monica was facing her husband as she eyes the mistletoe. She felt Griffin push the ends of her reddish brown hair back, as he tenderly guides her to him. Monica places her wedding band hand on his forearm, as she felt his hands on her cheek, just barely grazing it. Then she locks her eyes to his, and slowly closes them as his face came near hers. The next instant, Griffin kissed her softly and tenderly. It was more than a peck on the lips this time around, as she encircles her arms around his neck and pulled him in deeper. It only lasted for about a second or two, and then she pulls back and ended their kiss. Then softly she whispers to her husband, “We can make out more at the house….alone, without witnesses.”

Griffin gave a little laugh to that, “Thank you.”

Then Griffin turns to face his friend, “Satisfied now?”

“Yes, that was much of a better kiss than last year…much better.” Chris stated.

Monica shakes her head at him. “You just wanted to see us make out is that it?”

“Yeah, plus last year, your cheeks were all red after when Griffin kissed you, which gave me the hint of you are in love with him,” Chris stated.

Monica embraces him into a hug, “Merry Christmas Chris.”

“You too…” Chris stated as he hugs her.

Monica turns to her daughter as she said her last goodbyes to her friends. Then Griffin and Sarah’s help load up the car to head back. Once they reach home, Sarah helps unload the car from the Christmas gifts and says her goodnights to her father and Monica. Then heads up stairs to go to bed. Monica tucks her in and kisses her lightly, “Thank you….Mom..”

Monica looks to her, “For what?”

“For allowing my birth mother to spend Christmas with me. I haven’t had that moment with her like that in a long time. I know it can’t be easy for you to have there…especially with daddy.” Sarah stated.

Monica pulls a lock of her hair back, “You’re welcome princess. It wasn’t easy for your father, but your mother and I are starting to tolerate with each other.”

“Really? You mean you and my real mom are friends.” Sarah stated

“I wouldn’t call it that we are friends, but we understand one another.” Monica smiles. “Well it’s late, and I have an appointment with the baby doctor tomorrow.”

“Okay can’t wait for that. I finally will know if it’s a boy or girl!” Sarah stated.

“We all are. Well, goodnight baby have pleasant dreams, okay.” Monica kisses her head and turns out that light.

When Monica turns to leave Sarah calls out, “Merry Christmas Mom…”

Monica smiles, “Merry Christmas Sarah.”

Monica heads into Griffin’s bathroom, for a gift she has been waiting to give to him for a while. All last year, she wanted to express what she felt about him on Christmas night, and well this year, she wanted to make that happen.

Monica slipped into one of the sexy laundries that she got from her friends for when Roan and Monica got married, as well as she has a red rose to give to him. Griffin is just turning off the Christmas lights when Monica places a mistletoe above their bed. When Griffin enters the room, it was a glow of cinnamon candles and some other scent that smelt incredibly beautiful.

“Monica?” Griffin called out.

“Just a moment,” Monica calls out from the bathroom.

Griffin squinted his eyes as he knocks on the door, “Mon, babe, are you trying to seduce me to make love to you or something?”

“Not really.” Monica answers.

“Then why is our room filled with candles and a romantic setting?” Griffin asks as he gazes around their dim lit room.

“I’ll be right out shortly….Just….wait….one moment. Make yourself comfortable.” Monica stated beyond the close door.

Griffin shrugs to that and places his outer jacket in the closet. Monica slowly opens the door, and Griffin turns around to look at his wife. She was wearing a slim black tank top with lace around the bottom and the breast line. She had no bra on, and a very slimming short like shorts. Her hair was curled up at the bottom, and in her hand was a red rose.

“Wow…you look…” Griffin started to say but was trembling as she gently tugs on his tie.

Monica pointed up above their bed, “Merry Christmas….” She pauses as her lips were inches from his, “my love.” And then she kisses him very passionately. Griffin felt entirely breathless for her beauty and fell in line with her rhythm of kissing. But as soon as Griffin was about to head into the sexual direction Monica pulls out and smiles brightly at him.

Griffin shakes his head a moment and looks to her, “Why did you stop.”

“Because…you were starting to get a little sexual with the kissing,” Monica said smiling as she gazes up at her husband.

“Isn’t that what you had in mind?” Griffin asks.

“No. I didn’t say we are going to have sex.” Monica answers him.

“Then what is with the sexy lighting and the….way you are…dressed?” Griffin asks, still out of confusion as he eyes his wife, thinking how gorgeously sexy she was and all he wants to do is make love to her.

Monica sighs, as she moves out of Griffin’s embrace just a bit, “I said this morning I wanted to give you a Christmas gift that was well overdue from last year.”

“Yes, and I thought it was…well you know....” Griffin hinted.

“That’s what I wanted you to believe. But no…that is not it.” Monica smiles.

“Then what is it then?” Griffin asks.

Monica smiles as she kisses him one last time, then in a very sexy tone she whispers in his ear, “Close your eyes.” Griffin did as what he was told. Then Monica whispers to him, “okay, now take off your shirt, and lie down on the bed.”

Griffin let out a small teasing chuckle, “Because this is not sexual at all, honey.”

Monica laughs to his comment, “It’s not now just relax….”

“Oh, I’m relaxing all right. ” Griffin said as he lies on the bed, and soon he felt a pitch on his biceps. “Ooch. What…”

“Come on Roan, work with me on this, relax and still keep your eyes shut.” Monica teases.

“Alright,” Griffin admits as he did what Monica told him. He waited for a good five minutes as he felt Monica places a pillow for him to lay his head on. He felt some warm liquid substance on his back as he felt her soft, tender touch spread it around his entire back and upper forearms. Then she carefully and tenderly rubs his skin and tight muscles. Griffin had never felt so relax and at ease for a long time. Then he opens his eyes and realizes what Monica had planned. He turns his head to look at her, “You are giving me a massage?”

Monica nods, “Yes in a sexy way.”

Griffin squinted his eyes, “this is what you wanted to do last year when you are falling in love with me.”

Monica nods, “But without the sexy part. Still was nervous at the time of you, or anyone, to you know…make love to me that way. Since we got married, I wanted to give you a somewhat sexy message, and I planned to make a move on you of having us…to have sex like the time in Ireland…but since my attempted rape that almost happened, took that part out of the idea. But I will still give you a sexy massage. Been studying these massage methods for a while, while you were working on some case files for work. And I figured since you been working hard, these past several weeks of going back to work, I thought I would give you two hours of a massage, with hot rocks. So you will be relaxed and refreshed.”

Griffin smiles at her, “That is, thank you.”

“Your welcome.” Monica kisses his cheek.

Griffin adds, “Just one thing. What is the mistletoe for?”

Monica pauses in her massaging, “For this…” Monica leans to him and kisses him very tenderly and deeply. As she kisses him, her hands slid up his bare chest and onto his shoulders as she strokes them. Then Monica pulls back to look at him as he stares at her. A huge smile forms on his face as he kisses her once more.

Monica lets out a small laugh as she returns to her original spot. “The mistletoe is there for proper kissing and making out sections from last year. I figure we can do the kissing we want to without eyes staring at us.”

“Good thinking. You know you are the sexiest woman I have ever met.” Griffin stated as he laid his head down on the pillow. Monica smiles at that comment and works her magic on Griffin’s back.

After a full two hours of Monica massaging her husband, Griffin felt utterly relaxed, and his muscles don’t ache anymore. Monica has just finished putting the massaging things in the bathroom when Griffin lies in bed.

Monica comes out of his bathroom and goes and blows out two candles. Griffin turns to her, “what about the others? ”

“They’re, battery operated. They will turn off eventually.” Monica stated.

Griffin eyes his wife as she joins him in bed. “Merry Christmas Griffin.”

Griffin was going to say Merry Christmas to her too but decided to kiss her instead. Monica did not expect that, as she kisses him deeply. She felt his kiss on her neck and collarbone, and out of instinct, she felt her body tremble. She wanted to have sex, her body has been craving her husband’s touch for months now, but still, her mind won’t let her have sex with him. “Griff, I have a 10 AM appointment tomorrow….I need some rest if we want to make it to the clinic.”

Griffin backs off, “You’re right, but Monica I’ve been dying to make love to you again.”

“I know. I have the same desire as you do.” Monica confesses.

“Then what is stopping you?” Griffin asks as he softly rubs the side of her face.

“My mind…” Monica replies. “And that man’s evil laugh and this his phrase that he said to me right before he…..um…almost raped me, I always wanted to screw you.

Griffin sighs as he kisses her forehead, “You don’t have to be scared of him anymore Monica, you killed him.”

“I know that. Still doesn’t erase the memory. That was the terrifying moment in my life which it breaks my heart not to have you touch me as you did before all of this….this madness started. I pray to God that I wish things could go back to the way things were because I miss you Roan….I truly miss you making love to me, and I wish that I could forget about Norman, but I can’t.” Monica confesses.

Griffin said nothing as he holds his wife and strokes her hair. “Shhh, I know babe…I know. You don’t have to prove that you love me by having sex with me you know. You already shone me your love, and love me for who I am…that is all I ask for.”

Monica smiles through her tears, “It still is unfair, that you have to wait for me to come around.”

“We will have our sex life again Monica. This is just one of them, but you will get through this..” Griffin smiles and kisses her lightly. “Come on. We have a big day tomorrow.”

Monica nuzzled her nose into his bare chest and laid small butterfly kisses on it as she felt his lips on her forehead as he strokes her hair. Monica softly whispers to him, “Merry Christmas Roan.”

Griffin answers her right back, “Merry Christmas Monica.”

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