The night pressed on and Mav stayed by her side. She was nothing but smiles the entire night. A simple birthday cake seemed more than she had ever had before. She was as bright as the moon itself. Throughout the night she seemed happier than he had ever seen her.
“when your done with babysitting the princess you should come hang out with some of us in the woods.” One of the girls whispered into his ear.
“I am not babysitting.” Maverick said. “I am here with my friend.”
“Sure.” She said as she looked at him. “I mean if you really want to be stuck with a kid all night. I just thought you would like to come hang out.”
“Well I don’t.” Maverick said. He scanned the area and saw her starting to yawn. Knowing that she had hadn’t slept well in the past few days because she had been so excited. “Dawn?” he walked up to her and helped her steady on her feet.
“What?” she asked as he could now see she was struggling. Soon other people were also starting to get in their chairs lined with sleeping bags.
“It’s time to lay down.” He said as he looked at her. He looked around to see tents being popped up and people headed in them. He sat down in the chair and realized the one he had brought for her was not the reclining type like he had thought. He looked closely and saw that the chair was also broken. This was not the one he had laid out for them to take. He shook his head knowing that one or more of her brothers had switched them out when they were at the farm earlier in the day.
“Come on.” He said as he moved some things around on the chair he had for himself. He couldn’t believe the actions of her brothers yet again. Though he never found the person who had broke in he had an idea it was someone that was connected to the family and most likely a friend of one of her older brothers.
When she realized what was going on she looked at him. “What? Where am I going to sleep?”
“In this one.” He said as he looked at her.
“You?” She asked.
“Since someone decided to change out the chairs and rerig that one to fall apart when someone sits in it I think one night we can sleep like this.” He said as he moved the chair and the packs away from the others. He sat down first and saw there was plenty of room still left on the chair. She followed suit and soon the two were wrapped up in the enclosed sleeping bag. He tipped the chair back so they could both look at the stars still and watch as the shooting lights across the sky. As the bag kept them warm and soon even he felt the tug on his eyelids.
He looked down to her and she was already sleep using his chest as a pillow. He wrapped an arm around her to keep her there and comfortable. Then he let his eyes drop for the night.
At first light he heard the people leaving. They was supposed head to a lake for the morning and afternoon. Maverick looked down to her sleeping face and knew that he couldn’t wake her up. She was always up at dawn most of the time well before. She needed to sleep some more. It would be one last birthday present to her to let her sleep.
Maverick closed his eyes and just let her sleep. He realized that this was what he needed in his life. He looked down and then shook the idea from his head. There was no way. He had all ready had enough issues in his life because fo his desire to be her friend. He knew the other people looked at him as a child predator. He was too close to her.
The time he spent with her he knew that something had happened to change him. He hated that he was starting to even doubt himself. He needed to find a girlfriend. He needed to start acting like a normal nineteen year old instead of spending all his time with a now twelve year old. He then looked down at her sleeping upturned face as he brushed the hair off her face for a minute knowing that he was alone with her.
He had to admit to himself the truth. He loved her. He knew it in his bones though he never wanted to admit it to even himself. He could not act on how he felt. He never could let her know. He would be stuck on the sidelines as he watched her grow up and that was going to have to be enough. He would be there for everything she did in her life. This was his promise to himself.
As he touched his lips to her forehead knowing this was the only kiss he would get to give her. He let his lips linger there as he felt her soft skin there. He made a promise to himself there. If he was lucky enough and when she was finally legal he would make a move to get what he really wanted. Hopefully he would have a chance.
He just relaxed there in the chair and waited for her to wake up. He would love her without her even knowing that he did. All he had to do was stay by her side. She moved slightly and he adjusted to keep her comfortable. He was enjoying the few moments that he would have with having her close to him with no people watching closely. His lips on her forehead and her head snuggled up to his chest. He couldn’t have what he wanted all the time. The minutes to hours he had with her he would carry as his own present.