“I will always love him, he gave me Gracie.”
“No, do you love him? You know the love that I mean.”
Sammy looked at the doctor and thought a minute and figured that she should just be honest. The woman had a way of looking in her soul and Sammy didn’t see the point in lying.
“I do. He was my first love, and lover and I will always love him. He is the one for me.”
Abby looked at the redhead in her office and smiled, “Thank you for being honest. You didn’t have to be, but I am glad you did. You are an amazing young woman,” she stood up and shook Sammy’s hand, “I will send my report and the results to you, her current school and the Stevens School. They should be in contact with you shortly about Gracie’s admission process. In the meantime, if you need anything, please don’t hesitate to call me.”
Sammy thanked her and followed her out to the waiting room. Gracie ran to show her the picture she colored and Jen helped her put it on the bulletin board for others to see. Gracie waved to Abby and the two young ladies left.
Sammy buckled Gracie in and they talked about lots of things as they drove to the store. They laughed and giggled the whole way. They pulled into the grocery store and went inside, hand in hand. Sammy got a small cart and first picked up the prized macaroni and cheese for Gracie, before anything else. They got some special treats for their horse ride to the meadow on Sunday and then went to the card aisle so they could pick out a card for the party. They were looking over all the cards, trying to find one that Gracie would like for her friend.
Jake and Kevin were wandering the store trying to find some side dishes to go with dinner. Jake was making some ribs and they wanted something different to go with it. They were laughing and joking as they walked down the main aisle. Jake stopped and turned around as he saw Sammy down one aisle, reading cards. Kevin was helpless to stop him and just followed him. They walked up to her and stopped right next to her. She was so engrossed in what she was reading that she didn’t notice that they were standing there.
She jumped at hearing her name and whipped her head at the sound of the voice. She paled a little at seeing his face. She finally noticed his friend, a good looking blonde man with sparkling brown eyes. He had a mischievous look about him that she would probably enjoy any other time.
“Please don’t hit me again; I just wanted to say hi…”
She blushed at the mention of her behavior and noticed the red mark on his left cheek bone. Sammy felt a little hand grab her leg and peer around her to see who was talking. She had totally forgotten that Gracie was with her! SHIT!!
“Mommy! Did you hit someone?” Gracie asked in awe.
Jake and Kevin saw the little redhead poke out from behind Sammy. Kevin saw her little face and took a sharp breath in. Holy Mother of God!! Suddenly the voicemail she left his friend made perfect sense.
Jake looked at the little face and knelt down as his heart just about flew out of his chest. He felt his stomach drop. There was no denying that she looked exactly like him except for her hair, which was Sammy’s.
“Hello…My name is Jake. What’s yours?”
“Hello Jake, my name is Gracie, Did my Mommy hit you?” She asked with big eyes.
“Gracie, its ok, let m-“
“Yes, Gracie I am sorry to say that she did hit me. Right here, look!” He said as he interrupted Sammy and showed the little girl the mark on his face.
“MOMMY! You can’t put your hands on friends! Ms. April says that to us at school all the time! Hands are not for hitting!” Gracie sputtered to her mother.
Jake tried to keep from laughing as he saw the look on Sammy’s face as she looked at him.
“I know and I apologized to Jake for it. I was wrong and I won’t do it again. We should get go-“
“So tell me Gracie, what are you doing here at the store?” Jake asked, trying to get a feel for this little girl. He was drawn to her and wanted to hear her talk more.
“Well, Mommy is going on a date tonight and I went to see Dr. Abby today and am getting a special treat for dinner! Look! It’s my favorite mac and cheese!” She pointed to the cart and saw the container of his favorite food too.
“That’s mine too! Who is Mommy going on a date with?”
“Jake, I don’t think-“ Kevin started and he cut off his friend with one look.
“Oh she is going out with Brett; he is taking her to the restaurant that I like when Grampy takes me out. You can see the mountains and golf place from the tables. Do you know that place?”
“I do! I like to go there too. Gracie, how old are you? You talk so well!”
“I am five years old. I know lots of things, that’s why I went to see Dr. Abby today. She gave me a special test. It’s called the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale to see if I can go to Stevens School. Dr. Abby said I hit it out of the park. I can do multiplercation!” she responded proudly.
FIVE YEARS OLD!! Oh sweet Jesus! When he walked away from Sammy, she was pregnant. He felt even worse than he did before.
“What is your full name Gracie?”
“Grace Marie Doogan Hills. I am named after my grandmas!”
Jake’s heart jumped out of his chest hearing the confirmation of what he was suspecting, “That is a beautiful name, just like you are. What are you going to do this weekend?”
“Well, tomorrow is Alexis’ birthday party, so we are getting a card for her present. Then I am going with Aunt Kate and Uncle Joey and Emma to the movies, because Mommy has to buy a new car. Then on Sunday, Mommy and I are going to the meadow on a ride! I am so excited.”
The meadow held many good memories for him and Sammy, some more X-rated than others.
“Well Gracie, you are going to have a good time that is for sure! I hope to see you again soon!”
“Bye Jake!” She said as she took her mom’s hand in hers.
Sammy was just frozen over the whole conversation and woke up when she felt Gracie’s hand in hers.
“Have a good time on your date Samantha, I hope we see each other soon,” he told her with a firm and determined look in his eyes.
She nodded as she had seen that look several times and knew she would be seeing him again. And soon.
Jake and Kevin watched them walk down the aisle towards the checkout.
“I have a daughter! How the fuck did this happen?” Jake hissed to his best friend.
Kevin was trying to process everything he had just witnessed and couldn’t imagine what his best friend was going through, “I think you know how it happened. I just think your brain isn’t functioning correctly right now.”
Jake looked at his best friend as he sat in the driver’s seat of his SUV in shock/ He took a cleansing breath then seemed to make up his mind about something, “How about a change in dinner plans? I am suddenly craving a meal at the Country Club.”
Kevin shook his head, “Are you sure about this? She is going to be on a date, Jake!”
“Oh I am very sure! We do need to change clothes. But first, my father and I need to have a little talk about why I didn’t know until five minutes ago that I had a daughter!!!”
Kevin followed behind a quickly walking Jake. What a mess!