Chapter Sixty Three - Brax POV
Charlie and I were just walking into what should have been one of the best nights of our lives. Instead my cutie was gripping the hell out of my arm, freaking out because Calvin's parents were here. Coupled with the fact I was now raging at her father, who I felt had clearly played me, I almost felt like taking my fiance, turning around and heading home where I could hold her and keep her safe.
The fact we were excited to announce our baby to everyone tonight too was anguished on both our faces. I turned Charlie into me and wrapped my arms around her waist, holding her tight. "What do you want to do baby? Say the word and you know I am right there beside you. If you want to turn around and go home we can do that, or do you want to walk in there and sort this out? Then we can celebrate our engagement and baby like you deserve?"
She looked up at me and gripped my arms that were holding her tight. "We deserve Brax, not just me. I want to celebrate us."
"Then let's go celebrate." I took her hand in mine and led her into the room as everyone cheered and clapped. I pulled Charlie close to me and gave her a short kiss. We headed off to our left, of course because our closest friends were there, but also because it was the opposite direction to Calvin's parents. When we did start to head over to our friends I was surprised to see Carole and Dick. . . . shit! Richard! I need to get out of the habit of calling him that, standing behind our group of friends and not with Calvin's parents, who were supposed to be close friends of his.
Odd, but I quickly shook it off not giving them any more attention then they deserved. Tonight was not about them, it was about Charlie. This was her night and I was going to make sure she got the night she deserved.
Our group all hugged and kissed us and I saw Chester pissing around with Charlie already, while she broke out in a fit of giggles. "Chrissy, it is great to see you again. Welcome to Australia, I am only sorry it is my boy you have to put up with the stay." She laughed and thanked me before Congratulating us as I gave her a hug. "How long are you out for?"
"A couple of weeks, let's see how it goes." We both giggled knowing that meant, see how long before Chester's antics drive her up the wall. I told her I would speak with her throughout the night as I noticed Marcus standing at the back, trying to look inconspicuous since he told none of us that he had invited Tessa out to visit him. "You kept this quiet, dad?"
"Don't you dad me, asshole. You are in your thirties also, and literally going to be a dad soon!" I couldn't argue as we both smiled and hugged.
"Good to see you again too Tessa, thank you for coming."
"Thank you for having me, and congratulations again. Where's Charlie?"
"Monkey nuts barrelled her up already." When she said of course he didn't, couldn't miss being the centre of attention I nodded in agreement. "Or centrefold. One in the same with him."
We all had a chat before I headed over to say hello to Nick and his wife, Chris, Brett and April. Finally I got over and thanked Tina, Charlie's best friend and her partner for coming. We had a brief chat before I returned to my girl. She seemed to have calmed down by now, and was still giggling at Chester when I returned. "Alright, get the fuck off her already man."
I shoulder barged Chester out of the way and stood next to Charlie, wrapping my arm around her. "Not cool bro, not cool at all."
"Be careful baby, we just established Chester is on Shark week."
"Aww, you back with all the feels bro, since seeing Chrissy again?" I saw Chrissy go bright red when I said it. "Shit, sorry Chrissy! I didn't mean to embarrass you, I meant to embarrass him." I gave her a side hug as she said it was fine. "But seriously, just know it is only aimed at him, because I will be doing it alot."
"This is a pay back thing right?"
"Correct." Charlie and I both said at the same time before she chuckled again at us. We excuse ourselves to make our way around to the rest of our guests, spending the time to catch up with them, while thanking them for coming to celebrate with us. After we finished with my parents, we saw Richard and Carole. I took a moment to mentally prepare myself, as I squeezed Charlie's hip.
When Carole voiced her excitement at finally getting to speak to us Charlie answered. "Saved the best for last, mum."
"Smooth." She looked up at me smirking and said she knows she is.
Richard extended his hand as he spoke "Congratulations again, both of you."
"Thank you, and thank you for coming." It was the most I could afford at the moment, because what I really wanted to do was punch his teeth down his throat for inviting Calvin's parents. Instead I had made a promise to Charlie to give her the night she deserved. We were talking with Richard and Carole when we heard an older woman speak up behind us.
"Carole and Richard, there you are. Oh and Charlotte and . . . . well I don't know you."
She gave me a filthy look up and down. "Good, let's keep it that way." I took Charlie's hand and started to walk away when I heard it.
"What the hell are you and Mathias doing here Lyn?" Richard's voice stopped us both in our tracks as I turned to Charlie and asked if she heard it too?
"I was just about to say the same thing to you." We stopped and moved to the side and I pulled her into me, holding her tight. I whispered to Charlie if we stayed quiet we would be able to hear from our vantage point.
We stood there cuddled and made it look like we were talking and taking a minute to ourselves, all the while listening in. "Rather rude you would ask us that Richard, considering we paid you a considerable amount of money for that girl. Instead we find you here, selling her on to someone else after sending us a refund?"
When Charlie said 'Holy shit' I put my hand over her mouth quietly as I looked down. I saw the expression on Charlie's face as she realised, this wasn't her dad, this time he was fighting her corner. "First of all, you were not invited here because you are neither wanted nor welcome. Secondly I returned your money because my daughter is not for sale, and in all honesty, she never was. I was wrong and I am admitting that here in the presence of my wife. Thirdly, I am not selling a product on as you just tried to imply, so don't you dare treat my daughter with anything other than respect, Lyn. Do I make myself clear? I am here tonight with my wife to watch OUR daughter announce her engagement to a man I have met, and wholeheartedly believe deserves her hand in marriage. I can not stress enough just how proud I am to see her find a man she adores and who loves her just as much. And in a few month's time when my daughter gives birth to my first grandchild, I will be the supportive and proud father she always deserved."
Richard took a deep breath and stepped closer, his voice somehow turning more menacing. "I only hope I am afforded the opportunity to enjoy both the birth of my grandchild and to see her marry that man. Because he is the one that deserves her. Now I will kindly ask you both to do us a favour and leave. Do not call my family, do not visit my family and do not come near us ever again. This is over! Now you can leave, or I will have you escorted out!"
We watched as they stared on in shock and quickly left, shaking their heads and having a heated discussion. Once they had left the building, Charlie grabbed my hand and started walking back towards her parents. When Richard saw us, he looked genuinely shocked. "Charlie, look . . .I know. . . ." Before he could finish what he was saying, I felt her let go of my hand and throw herself at her father. Charlie wrapped her arms around him tightly and buried her head in his chest. It took Richard a few moments to get over the initial shock before he hugged her back tightly. I saw Carole wipe a tear and I knew exactly where she was coming from.
"Thank you, dad." Richard lifted her head in between his hands so she had to look at him.
"Thank you for teaching me to be a better man." They hugged again and after a few minutes she came back to me and I cuddled her tight also. I extended my hand to Richard and he took it warmly as I said thank you. "You have my blessing, both of you."
"It means a lot Richard, to Charlie and I."
"Go you two. Speeches and you still need to make this announcement, so I can celebrate my first Grandchild properly."
"Ok mum, just for you." Charlie chuckled as her mum shooed us along. I smiled at Charlie and took her hand as we headed towards the middle of the room. Chester chucked me a microphone before he wolf whistled to quieten the room down. Once the room fell silent and everyone was looking at us, I turned the mic on and wrapped my arm around Charlie's waist, holding her tightly as she placed her hand on my chest and looked up to me.
"Firstly, I will get the obvious out the way, which is to thank each and everyone of you for being here with us tonight. Charlie and I are delighted, thrilled and honoured to share this night with you all. Standing together in front of all the very special people in our lives to announce our engagement makes our private dreams public, and in a way, real. Thank you for being here, for your love and well wishes."
Everyone applauded as I waited for it to quieten down again. "Charlie has made what I previously condemned as trite, meaningful. With her by my side I understand love makes the world go round and all you need is love. Whether I will also understand the importance of themed colours for the reception decor, or the bridesmaid dresses is another."
"Just worry about the lingerie colour theme bro!"
"Chester!" The entire reception roared in laughter as Charlie squealed at him.
"However, like the best of men, my father and many of you here, who've gone before me, I'll endure it, because I know what I want, and that's to call Charlie my wife."
Everyone clapped again and took a sip of their drinks, except for Charlie of course, but I gave her a sweet kiss and smiled at her. I turned the mic off for a moment at my side. "You ready to make this night everything you wanted it to be?"
"I am ready for everything that comes our way. With you Brax, I can't go wrong." I kissed her again before turning the mic back on.
"While I still have your attention, if I could just ask you all to take out the envelopes you received on your way in tonight, and open them up. You will find inside invitations for the wedding, date and venue to be confirmed. We have also included a little bonus extra for everyone here tonight."
I put the mic down by my side and switched it off again as everyone opened their envelopes before we heard one of my relatives shout 'Oh my god, you're having a baby' before the entire room roared with cheers and clapping. We smiled at all our friends as they found a copy of our scan photo inside their envelopes.