And Dad Makes Three

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We are walking around Animal Kingdom for the second half of the day. Ainsley has come with us which makes Callum happy. He was a great camper in the morning with me. We went on a bunch of rides, but I could tell he missed his mom. With one hand I am pushing the stroller we rented for Callum and with the other I am holding Ainsley’s hand.

“I am glad you are feeling better,” I tell her, kissing her cheek.

“Thanks, I am hoping the meds are what I need to stop this flare up. Oh, I wanted to tell you about my mom.” I can see how she feels about her mom.

“What did she call for?”

“She wanted to say Merry Christmas and tell me she got married. They are living out in Napa Valley. She told me to come and bring my child to visit.” I whip my head around at her last words.

“Your child?” I ask, and Ainsley nods.

“She said it was my choice to ruin my life by keeping him.” Her voice is low so Callum cannot hear us talk as we walk toward the monkey island.

“How awful. Are you planning on going out to see her?” I won’t stop her if she wants to give Callum a relationship with her mother.

“Honestly, no. She hasn’t bothered to come out here to meet him. Why should I save up money for two plane tickets to see a woman who doesn’t like me?”

“I’d pay for the tickets if you want,” I offer, knowing she probably won’t take the offer.

“No. If she wants to meet Callum, then she can fly out here. I am sure she will once she finds out you and I are dating. You are the perfect candidate for a husband in her eyes,” she answers with a wry smile on her face. I chuckle and pull her close to kiss her lips.

“We can do whatever you want about your mom. My parents are happy to be the only grandparents for him.” Ainsley laughs and smiles at me.

“George and Ivy are his grandparents too even if they aren’t blood related.”

“True.” I stop us in front of a large island with monkeys climbing all over.

“Mommy, look!” Callum shouts, pointing to a group of monkeys playing around on the ropes. Ainsley kneels by the stroller and the two talk about the different monkeys they see. My phone rings, so I step away from them to answer it in private.

“What’s up, Leo?”

“Sorry to call while you are on vacation. I wanted to give you an update on the P. situation.”

“Have the authorities been alerted?” I glance over to see Ainsley pushing the stroller around to the other side of Monkey island I follow along.

“I just finished speaking with them. They have taken all of our information and will put an arrest out for him. I told them his family would come back from vacation in a couple of days’ time. The detective in charge, Detective Hoffman, told me they would arrest him at the airport. They have frozen the account in question until the investigation is over. Obviously Hoffman will want to speak to you when you come back to town along with Ainsley. Ethan has already spoken about his part in finding out what P. was up to,” Leo explains, I do my best to keep Ainsley and Callum in my sights.

“Thanks Leo. I am sorry we slipped out of town so quickly. I didn’t want Ainsley’s face to get out. She was freaking out when Vivianne came into my office showing her the tabloids.”

“I get that. You are used to being in the news. Ainsley has been living her life away from the public eye, now she won’t have that choice. You two will have to sit down and talk about how you want to handle it. There will be a time when her face is going to end up on the front of some tabloid.”

“I know Leo. It is something I am mulling over. I don’t want to force her to be okay with being in the news. We will figure something out.” I run a hand through my hair just as a flash pops to my left. I look and see an expensive camera pointed at Ainsley and Callum. Everything in my head tells me it is just a tourist trying to get a shot of the monkeys. My heart tells me it might be paparazzi snapping shots of my family.

“Finn?” Leo’s voice calls through the phone.

“Sorry. I think I am being too suspicious. I just saw a man taking pictures in Ainsley’s direction. I’ll talk to you more when we get back,” I tell him and hang up.

“Finn!” Callum shouts for me, leaning out of the stroller. I smile and wave back, walking up to them.

“Sorry, Leo needed to update me on the P. situation,” I say to Ainsley, kissing her cheek. She wraps an arm around my waist and smiles up at me.

“I am glad that is being handled.”

“Same. Now we just have to figure out what to do about the pictures.” Ainsley sighs and nods.

“I know. You are a rich millionaire. People are going to be watching and writing about you. If we want this to work, I am going to have to get over being in the tabloids.”

“Doesn’t mean we can’t control what they write about you and how much exposure you get. We have ways of avoiding paparazzi. I think I am on their radar at the moment because my company is expanding overseas, and that makes me someone to watch.”

“You are the expert. I will follow your lead.”

“Okay, well, right now I want to try some rides. What do you say Callum?” I look down at him, and he nods.

“Yes!” I laugh and grab the stroller, pushing him with Ainsley at my side. I love the feeling of being a family. I hadn’t thought I wanted to be a dad, but now spending time with Ainsley and Callum is something I am enjoying.

We spend the rest of the day going on all the rides Callum is big enough for. I spend way too much money on gifts for everyone and sneak in a surprise for Callum’s birthday in a few days. While Ainsley and Callum were busy looking at all the plastic animal toys, I spoke with an employee about what the park does for birthdays. I cannot wait to spoil my son.

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