I am shocked as Callum opens gift after gift. Each one is something a little boy would love to play with. One of them is a small scooter, perfect for him. Callum shouts with joy as he opens it.
“You can play with it in the ballroom. No one uses it unless we are having a party,” Joyce explains, handing it to Trevor for him to open. Each gift Trevor opened carefully, both of them having smiles on their faces. Laird opens his gifts and so does Finn. They gave both of them expensive bottles of liquor and gift cards to places they shop or eat. I still have my presents sitting at my feet. I’ve been too busy with Callum to open my own.
“Ainsley, don’t forget yours,” Joyce reminds me. I smile and reach for a small one. I open it, surprised to see a small bottle of the perfume I wear. I cock my head in confusion.
“I recognized the scent at the party, dear,” Joyce explains.
“That is an impressive skill. It was a gift from my mother for my eighteenth birthday. I only wear it on special occasions because it is expensive.”
“Now you can wear it whenever.”
“It was nothing, my dear. I’m afraid the rest of the gifts aren’t as personal.”
“Anything is more than I could expect,” I answered, reaching for the next. This one is a gift card for the local coffee shop. I smile and keep opening.
“Thank you, Joyce and Trevor, for thinking of Callum and me,” I say after finishing opening the gifts.
“You are very welcome. Callum is such a sweetheart.” Joyce smiles at my son who is standing with Trevor, his scooter set up. I watch as the two of them run out of the room.
“Should I be worried?” I ask, pointing to the two disappearing.
“No. Trevor is excited to have a grandson to play with.” Joyce waves off my concern and I glance up at Finn. He and I have only been dating a short time and his parents were getting attached.
“Don’t worry, baby,” he whispers in my ear, giving my lobe a nip. I smile and settle back in his arms. Laird is quiet looking at his phone, Joyce heads out of the room saying she is checking on dinner.
“Merry Christmas, Ainsley,” Finn whispers, pulling a wrapped gift out of his pocket.
“Where do you keep hiding these?” I ask, sitting up to take the present.
“I wanted to spread them out through the day. This is the last physical gift. I have another one for you after Callum goes to bed,” he says winking at me. I blush at his promise and open the gift. This one is a necklace that matches the bracelet and earrings. I shake my head, placing a hand over my mouth.
“Here, let me.” He takes the necklace and lays it around my neck. His thick fingers dexterously do the tiny clasp.
“Beautiful,” Joyce announces, smiling at Finn and me.
“Thank you,” I whisper, unable to express my gratefulness.
“Can I try my scooter?” Callum interrupts, holding it up in my face. I jerk back as everyone else chuckles.
“Yes, come on.” Trevor stands holding a helmet with spikes to make it look like a dinosaur. I watch as Callum runs off with Trevor and Joyce following behind.
“Should we go too?” I ask about to get up but Callum holds me back, shaking his head.
“No. They want to spend time with him and that means I get to spend time with you.” Finn nips at my ear, making me shudder. I snuggle back into his arms, curling my legs underneath me.
“I am still here,” Laird reminds us in a bored tone. He has his face stuck on his phone screen.
“Well then, you can talk to us,” I tell him, turning away from Finn’s face to stare at his brother.
“About what?” he asks, glancing up from his phone.
“Tell me about being a photographer.” I smile at him as he looks at me with a confused expression.
“You want to know?”
“I do. I am envious of people with artistic talents. I am not very good artistically,” I remark with a shrug of my shoulders.
“Well, I guess I became interested in photographing people in high school. I realized I could capture other sides to them that even they themselves don’t know. Being able to show them another side became an addiction. I needed to find the interesting sides to everyone.”
“Have you always done fashion?”
“No. I started out taking school pictures. I realized then I wasn’t cut out for bland school pictures.”
“Would you be interested in doing family photos?” Finn asks, pressing a kiss to my temple.
“Only for friends or family.”
“Would you do a set for us?” he asks, motioning between his and my bodies.
“You two only just started dating and you want me to do family photos?” Laird asks, raising a quizzical eyebrow.
“Maybe not yet, but when we feel this is going to be a permanent thing,” Finn counters and Laird nods with a smile.
“Sure. I like Ainsley. This is the first family Christmas we’ve had in years.” Laird gives me a smile, then goes back to his phone. I exchange a glance with Finn and he rolls his eyes with a smile on his lips.
“Dinner time!” Joyce announces, coming into the room with a laughing Callum on her hip. The three of us left in the room get up and follow them into the dining room. Dinner is delicious and more food than I’ve eaten in a long time. I watch Callum stuff himself on food and desserts. By the time Finn and I get home, Callum is fast asleep in the back of the car. We get him inside and in pajamas without waking him. I notice an unfamiliar car in the parking lot but think nothing of it. People move in and out of the apartment building regularly.