All the way home

Chapter 35

The car pulled up at a farm about a mile from Phelan.

"Where are we Mr. Callen?" Hetty asked as he turned off the engine.

"This is Bert's brothers farm, I'm here to pick up something for Jake, I was hoping you'd help me pick," He said cryptically.

Hetty nodded and got out of the car as they walked towards the farmhouse.

"Greg." Fred, Bert's brother waved as he walked down the porch.

"Hey Fred, how's the generator?" Callen asked.

"Never better, you did a remarkable job on it." He smiled, "You have first pick, so a boy or a girl?" He said heading towards the barn.

"Boy I think. No chance of puppies down the line then." Callen laughed.

They walked into the barn where a German Shepard mother was lying watching over her pups.

Hetty smiled at the small bundles of fur that were rolling over each other.

"Are they weaned?" she asked concerned.

"Yes Ma'am, although occasionally they still feed from their mother." Fred said looking at the smaller woman.

Callen walked over to the mother, "Hey lulabelle, I bet you're glad you've finally had them." He turned to Hetty, "Last time I was here she was very pregnant." He explained.

"So is she a working dog?" Hetty asked.

Fred shook his head, "Nope house pet, but she picked the barn to have her puppies, I didn't have the heart to move her."

A small puppy walked over to Callen and sniffed his feet then started tugging at his shoelace.

Callen smiled as he lifted him up, "This one I think." he said as the puppy licked his face.

Pulling up outside the house he took out his cellphone, " home honey?" he asked.

"I'm in the garage." she said and the garage door opened.

Hetty's eyes widened as she took in the heavily pregnant woman, "You're having a child?"

Callen smiled, "I didn't mention it?" He was smug knowing he hadn't told her. For a moment he relished in the shocked look on her face until she quickly covered it with a smile.

"No...Congratulations." She said.

"Hello?" Joelle said as she saw the smaller woman.

"Jo...This is Hetty, she's my bos...stepmother."

"Your Stepmother?" Joelle asked in shock.

Callen grinned, "We've been estranged, but I think we may have found some common ground."

Joelle looked worried for a second and then turned to Hetty, "You are not planning on hurting him or our son again are you Hetty?" she asked.

Hetty shook her head, "I would never want us to be estranged again, this chance means a lot to me Miss Taylor."

It was Callen's turn to do a double take. "You know her name?"

"I knew her as young Mr. Callen's class teacher, I…" she stopped realizing she had maybe done it again, "I had his school teachers background checked, in case they were Comescus." she admitted.

Callen nodded in understanding, he had done the same thing.

"Who?" Joelle asked.

"Family from Romania who killed my mother." Callen explained. "So...Dog bed and supplies?" He asked changing the subject.

Joelle pointed to the corner, "Just the dog bed, Jake's watching Ice Age again so I've managed to sneak the rest into the house. Did you get it?" She asked.

Callen walked back over to the car and opened a box in the back, pulling out and holding the fluffy puppy close he walked over to his fiancee. "It's a boy." He said.

"Oh that reminds me…" Joelle reached into her pocket and pulled out a sonogram, "It's a boy."

She smiled as Callen pulled her into his arms trying carefully not to crush the puppy. "Jake was thrilled you let him go instead of you, he wanted to share his room with his little brother, he was disappointed that we were not bringing him home today...oh and will need to have a talk with him...he wants to know how his little brother got in there." Joelle smirked as she handed G the dog bed.

"Jo!" Callen sighed and turned as he and Hetty followed her into the house.

"Jake! Daddy's home!" Joelle called.

There was a thunderous sound of footsteps as Jake ran down the stairs, "Daddy...did you bring him! Did you bring my little brother?" He called as he ran headlong into his father and hugged his legs.

"Hey sprout!" Callen lifted him up into a hug.

"Daddy...Mommy has my little brother in her tummy...did you get him from the doctors?" he asked still confused about babies.

Callen smiled, "Nope getting your little brother out will be all mommy's job. But he needs to get a bit bigger, he's too small for clothes. If he's born now he'll get cold." He explained.

"But I have old clothes he can use, why can't he come out now?" Jake asked.

"Because babies need time to grow before they can get born, it's just the way it is." Callen said slightly exasperated.

"But why?" Jake asked. Then he stopped as a box on the floor moved. "Daddy? What's that?"

"Something to keep you busy until your brother gets here." Callen smiled.

Jake walked over to the box and opened it. "A puppy? You got me a puppy?!" he gave a huge smile, Callen's heart clenched at the happiness his son was exuding.

"Yep you need to name him." Callen said as Jake stroked the puppy in the box.

"Me?!" Jake looked at the puppy seriously. "Scrat...his name is Scrat...he looks like the squirrel on Ice Age." He announced seriously.

"Ok…" Callen walked over to Jake and got down on one knee scratching the puppy behind the ear. "You have to look after Scrat like a big brother, you will need to walk him, feed him. Your mom and I will help with that. Also you will need to love and protect him can you do that?" he asked solemnly.

Jake nodded, then finally he noticed the woman by the door. He moved to put himself between this stranger and the puppy and grabbed hold of Callen's shirt sleeve.

"Daddy? There's a stranger...Mommy taught us in class that we should tell a grown up we trust when we see a stranger. And…" Jake gulped. "Daddy...she isn't going to take me from you again is she?"

Callen picked his son up in a hug and walked over to the couch. Sitting down with his son on his knee he smiled and got his attention.

"Jake, do you remember how Mommy is going to be your mommy for real when we get married?" Callen asked.

Jake nodded, "My first mommy is in heaven with the angels and a bad man made my first daddy sick so I had to come live with you."

Hetty's heart clenched listening to the child tell Callen how he understood the circumstances surrounding his birth.

"Well, This is Hetty. She's my mommy like Joelle is your mommy. My first mommy went to heaven too and she married my daddy a long time ago. Do you understand?"

Jake looked at Hetty in confusion.

"Isn't Grandma Wanda your mommy?" Jake asked.

"No Jake, but she is still my ma and your grandma. She loves us just like mommy loves you. Her and Grandpa Bert are a special part of our lives. They are not there because they have to be. They are there because they love us and they want to be there."

"Ok." Jake said not taking his eyes off the smaller woman. "So…" he climbed off Callen's lap and walked towards her.

He cocked his head and turned his bright blue eyes at her. "If you are my Grandma...Why don't I know you?"

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