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Growing Up

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76 Re: Growing Up on 15th November 2012, 19:45

Liam’s first classes were great and he realised how much he had missed teaching and being with that bunch of smart school kids. As much as he loved his family, the past months had only consisted of taking care of three people at the same time, two of them were infants who needed constant watch, and one just needed constant watch because she was constantly close to break-downs. Those summer holidays had been really tough and anything but a relaxing break. Of course things were a lot harder when you didn’t have only one but two babies to care of, and on top of that he couldn’t count on Jo’s support in the first weeks after the twins were born because Jo needed help herself and needed weeks to even realise that she had two children. So yeah, taking care of three people at the same time had been incredibly exhausting, but now things seemed to be better again, since Jo was slowly getting better and he could finally do something else than babysit 24 hours, 7 days a week.
It was nearly lunchtime when he noticed a small paper being slipped through the door. The students were just busy looking at something in their books while he quickly picked up the note and read it. He had no idea what Jo was up to, he hoped everything was okay and that she wasn’t overwhelmed by taking care of the twins alone and now wanted him to help, but it wouldn’t make sense if she called him to the library for helping with the girls.
When lunch started, Liam went to the library where he was greeted almost wildly by his wife who- to his totally surprise- kissed him in a way she hadn’t kissed him for a very long time. He couldn’t say anything because she immediately led him to the picnic blanket with some good looking food and their daughters. Jill was awake while Jane seemed like she was about to doze off any second. They sat down and Jo immediately took his arms and wrapped them around her while she was mentioning again that her body was so awful and she would get back in shape again. She had no idea how much he liked her current body, he liked it more than the one before because now she looked at least a bit womanly and he liked that.
“Liam, say something, please”, Jo said. It was a nice feeling to have her body so close to his, although he was just waiting for her to freak out again any second.

“Ehm…what’s this all for?”

“It’s a surprise for you.”

He liked the surprise, but he couldn’t help but be sceptical. “What’s this all about? I mean the kiss…Usually you push me away as soon as I kiss you like this.”

Jo looked a bit hurt. “I’m getting better, Liam.”

“I know, I’m just…I wasn’t expecting this…” His eyes wandered over to his daughters. “But it’s a nice surprise.”
That same moment Jill made a face that looked like she was about to cry, so he let go off Jo and took his daughter. “It’s all right, Cupcake. Daddy is here.”

Jo looked sad because he let go off her and was now occupied with Jill. She wasn’t jealous of her daughter, but she wished Liam could treat her a bit like he treated the girls.
“Liam, I want us to be close again, but you don’t even manage to kiss me.”

“What are you talking about? I’m kissing you all the time…” He didn’t even look up, his eyes were only fixed on Jill who calmed down again.

“Yes, on my head, on my cheek…Like I’m a distant relative of yours.”

He finally looked up. “I almost raped you, Jo. And I seem to recall that after that you were scared of me, which of course you had all right to be. But when I came even as close as a metre to you, you already flinched. So yes, the past few weeks have been better, but you’re the one who shies away from any form of physical contact, so how am I supposed to know when you suddenly decide you’re ready to be kissed normally again?”
Great job, man! That was very sensitive again.
“Jo, I’m sorry. I just…ever since you got pregnant I don’t know how to be around you. I don’t know what to do around you anymore. One day you want me to hug you and not let go off you, the next day you completely freak out when I have my hand on your knee. I’m confused, and I don’t know how to be around you anymore, I just don’t. What is it that you want?”


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77 Re: Growing Up on 15th November 2012, 21:03

Jo looked a way she felt like he hated her.

“Liam? Do you still love me? Me and not the girl want me to be.” Jo felt awful in questioning his love but the way he acted she wasn’t sure anymore.

“Jo, -“

“No don’t start with I got you knocked up I would not walk away from my children. I’m not asking about the girls I am asking about me.”

Liam looked at her for a long time, the necklace he had given to her was around her neck and she looked so hurt and it was his fault, again.

“You mean everything to me Jo.” Liam whispered. “I just don’t know when you want me to do something and when not.”

“You could try.” Jo tried to offer.

“Jo I am but I never ever want to see this pure terror in your eyes. You looked like you had after you had been kidnapped and this time you didn’t want me to protect you but someone to protect you from me. I would have left you and the girls alone if you wanted me to but for some insane reason you forgave me. I would have raped you Jo, if you wouldn’t have stopped me.” Liam sounded tired and defeated. He looked passed Jo on the blanket and a small smiled appeared on his face when he saw the cards to help her to say words she wasn’t sure how to say.

“I should have told you why I am not ready…”

For a moment Liam thought Jo was ready to tell him about the complications.

“But I can’t. I just try to do the right thing but I am not perfect Liam. I do mistakes and… Liam don’t you understand? I told you, that I would not mind when you sleep with a girl you pay for a service like this and I really meant this but those girls they do this for a living they know how to satisfy a man and who am I to think I am enough. The only man I ever had is you and even when I think you are the most amazing man in bed I don’t think you say this about me, not with all your heart. Maybe to be nice to me but not because you really mean it. How can I compete with a girl like them? How can I let you look at me when I know you don’t really see me anymore? Liam I feel like you only see me as a duty, as a mentally ill person that needs to be watched so I accidently not kill myself. It scares me so much that I want to be close to you and at the same time I don’t feel like you want the same. I don’t think you still desire me.” Jo was crying she knew she had to admit this, her therapist and her had talked about it but actually telling Liam why she was scared made her fear that she was right and he just stayed out of duty and not love. “I don’t want you to stay because you think you have to, but because you love me even when you never say those words. It seems so easy for you to show your love to the girls and I know it sounds insane but I think I am jealous on my own daughters for taking the man I love with all my heart and can not show how much.”

Jo was holding a chicken salad sandwich in her hand but she hadn’t eaten a bite. She wasn’t really hungry anymore. This picnic was supposed to be a new beginning and it started to feel a lot more like an end. “Maybe I just let you go back to the students and I go upstairs with the girls. The baptism has to be planned. I’m sorry I don’t want you to feel guilty I just try to be honest with you.”


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78 Re: Growing Up on 16th November 2012, 14:10

He wanted to say something, but he had already gotten up, took both girls and walked out of the library. He wanted to follow her but the moment he left the library he ran into Evelyn who started talking about a student who behaved badly, and after she was done talking to him the break was over anyway and he had to go back to his classes, he knew he couldn’t just miss them, even though he couldn’t really focus anymore because he had to think about all the things Jo said. How could she believe that he wasn’t interested in her anymore? She was the one who pushed him away, so naturally he kept his distance. It didn’t have anything to do with him not wanting her anymore, that was ridiculous. He just did what she wanted him to do the past months; not getting too close to her because she was scared of physical contact. And now she got the impression that he wasn’t attracted to her anymore just because he did precisely what she wanted him to do.
His last class ended shortly after three, and he didn’t even go back to the teachers’ office, he immediately headed back upstairs where he found Jo curled up on the couch in the living room, in her arms the book he once wrote her. It was so quiet that he assumed both girls were sound asleep, which didn’t happen all the time since usually one of them was awake, but this time it was unusually quiet.

“We need to talk”, Liam said, a little bit too serious. It almost sounded like an accusation. Jo slowly turned her head towards him, looking as sad as ever. He had to think how he ruined this poor girl’s life in every possible way. How happy she seemed the first time he met her and also during the time when they were only friends. The first time he had seen her sad was because of him, because she thought he hadn’t shown up to her concert. And there it began, this very long line of him making her sad, over and over again. As much as he loved her and his daughters, sometimes he wished he could turn back time to that moment before they became a couple, to let her be the happy girl that she used to be before he waltzed into her life and ruined so much in it.
“You worry that I don’t desire you anymore, but the truth is, I’m crazy about you and it’s killing me, it’s really bloody killing me to stay away from you, but after what I’ve done to you I had to be very careful, and that’s what I did the past weeks. I’ve been trying to be careful and keep a certain distance because you were scared of me, and when it got better you weren’t scared of me anymore but you were still scared of physical contact and you made it really clear that you didn’t want any, I could actually feel you completely stiffen when I hugged you, and you have no idea how hard that was for me, you know, to see you not even wanting a hug from me. But I accepted that, even though it was bloody hard, but I could see that you were uncomfortable and that’s why I basically left you alone, it was all out of respect for you, not because I stopped being attracted to you.” He paused for a moment. “You’re wondering why I’m staying with you and think that I’m only with you out of duty? Well, I wonder why the hell you would stay with a person who constantly, repeatedly, almost always hurts you. I’m staying with you because you mean the world to me, not because you’re a duty. I’m staying with you not because you’re the mother of my children but because you’re the person I knew before that, before you became a mother, the person that I care more than anything about. And that’s exactly why I kept my distance, because you were scared of me and my touch, and I didn’t want you to get hurt again. I’m always attracted to you, Jo, every day. It doesn’t matter if you’re 9 months pregnant, or if you just got up and have bushy hair, or if you have a post-baby figure which I absolutely love because you finally have curves- I don’t care how you look like, it doesn’t change my feelings for you, and I’m always attracted to you, whether you wear tiny lingerie or my boxershorts and t-shirts that are too big for you, I always want you.” Liam had no idea if this was freaking her out again, it probably was. “And sometimes I’m scared how much I want you, because I’m scared that I will hurt you again. I keep this distance from you not because I don’t desire you anymore, but because I love you. And I…I usually…I get those people hurt that I love the most. And I don’t want that.” He shoved his hands into his pockets and looked towards the window. Why did she just not understand that he did all those things for her?


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79 Re: Growing Up on 16th November 2012, 23:15

Jo didn’t really say a lot during the rest of the day, she had heard him, she had heard everything what he had said and she had seen the way he looked at her –exactly like he had so many years ago as he yelled at her that he does love her after the summer concert. It was late well for young parents Jill had her last feeding and Jo and Liam were laying in bed, they both were still awake and they knew the other one was awake. Liam had shaved just as Jo had asked him to but he knew this was just for a moment. Jo turned around to Liam and kissed him she had no troubles finding his lips in the twilight of the stars above them.

“I’m sorry I never meant to question your feelings for me. It’s just I don’t feel beautiful anymore.” Jo whispered while her head was resting on his chest listening to his heartbeat.

“Josephine Yvaine O’Doherty you are beautiful just like a star.” Liam said passionately he wanted to hold her, to touch her to feel her.
Jo smiled and kissed him again, and she did not freak out when he made the kiss go more passionately, his hands were slowly wandering up Jo’s shirt but when his hand reached her boobs. He was very gentle with his touch even when he wished he could nail her the way like they used to have sex but he had to hold back and be gentle like he had been in the beginning their relationship. Jo first of all liked to be with Liam, she liked to be so close with Liam but then she stiffed, not because she didn’t want him to touch her but because another reason.

“Liam, wait… please.” Jo whispered sounding disappointed. She saw that he hated it, and she felt that he actually wanted more. “I’m really sorry. I do want this but um Liam can we maybe we can just talk? You know like we did when we just got together? I liked it a lot and I felt never closer then when we talked about everything that was on our minds. OI know it is not sex but it sort of felt like it in a way.” Jo mumbled gently pushing Liam’s hand away. Only her eyes showed the panic while her movements were calm.


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80 Re: Growing Up on 17th November 2012, 15:30

This came, of course, to no surprise for him. He actually had been waiting for her to pull back any second, so when she did, he wasn’t surprised at all. At first it was disappointing because he just wished she would get it together at some point, but he could see the panic in her eyes and when she suggested to just talk, he thought it wasn’t a bad idea after all. He just hoped she would open up to him and wouldn’t let him do all the talking. Jo leaned her head against his shoulders and searched for his hand to hold. This felt really nice, and she was right, they didn’t need to rip off their clothes in order to feel closure- even though he really, really missed that too. They talked for hours- once in a while had to get up because one of the girls was crying- but then they continued and it felt really good. By the time Liam got up to make them some breakfast and picked up little Jane who had been awake and was shouting for his attention, he felt like he and Jo had finally gotten back some of the closure that they had lost in the last months, and he had missed that so much.

A few days later

“Dude…” Liam looked at his friend with raised eyebrows. “I told you to wear something casual.”

“This is casual”, Alfie replied dryly, not getting Liam’s point, after all, he wasn’t even wearing a tie, so yeah, this was casual for him.

“You look like you’re going golfing.”

“That’s not my golfing outfit.”

“Did you ever hear something about jeans, you know? And a normal jumper?”

“Jeans?” Alfie just glared at him. “Are you serious?”

Liam took a deep breath. “Okay, never mind.”

“I didn’t want to do this in the first place, Ricky practically forced me to. Why the hell would I need to learn how to ride a bike? People survive if they can’t do it, it’s not like I’m going to die just because I never learned how to ride a stupid bike.”

Liam grinned. “Well, I think Ricky thinks that you need more…ehm…normal life experiences, you know?”

“I don’t see how riding a bike is a normal life experience.” He glared sceptically at Liam’s bike. “And I’m too old for this crap.”

“Well, you know, it’s usually not a normal life experience to have a personal driver when you’re a toddler and to get served by butlers and maids.”

“That, my friend, is a normal life experience”, Alfie said matter-of –factly.

Liam just shrugged his shoulders. He knew that whenever he and Alfie spent time together, two very different worlds literally crashed together, but he was used to it by now.
“Okay, let’s get this show on the road.”

“This won’t fit me”, Alfie said while scrutinizing the bike.

“Sorry?”

“It’s yours, right?”

“Yeah, but-“

“Since you fit on this bike there’s no way I fit on it too, because you’re tiny, and I’m not.”

“That’s the thing about bikes”, Liam explained. “They pretty much come all in the same size for adults, but you can change the height of the seat, so that’s what I did, and now it should be adjusted perfectly and it’s not too small for you anymore.”

“Aha.” Alfie still didn’t look convinced. “Look, can we just do something else and I’ll tell Ricky that-“

“No, you’re not going to get out of this”, Liam interrupted him.

“I’ll pay you if we don’t do it.”

Liam shook his head. “Nope, no way out.”

Alfie rolled his eyes. “Fine!” He didn’t look particularly happy when he got on the bike. “This is stupid”, he said dryly.

“I can’t believe you never learned how to ride a bike.”

“Well, unlike everybody else I didn’t have a daddy who taught me how to.”

“I didn’t have one either.”

“But you had a mother.”

“True.”

“And while yours probably had a great time teaching you, mine was off in some stupid spa or getting her skin lifted by a plastic surgeon. And this bike isn’t working!”

Liam chuckled. “It’s not the bike, you just don’t have the balance yet.”

“And how do I get the bloody balance?”

“You have to practice and-“ Liam couldn’t finish his sentence because Alfie was already rolling away like a child that didn’t know what to do.

“How do I stop this thing?!” He sounded actually very panicked.

Liam couldn’t hold it back anymore, he wanted to help him but he had to laugh so hard that he had to sit down before he would fall over from all the laughing.

“Liam!!!” Alfie was about to drive right into a huge bush while his friend sat on the dirty ground and didn’t stop laughing. Alfie landed right in the bush and jumped off the bike. “I’m going to strangle you, you Irish midget!”

“I’m sorry!” Liam tried to take a deep breath but he was still laughing. “But this was priceless. In case you kill me today, this was absolutely worth dying, you should have seen-“

“Fuck this!” Alfie was still stuck in the bush and tried to get out of it. “And bloody bike! It totally squishes my penis. I warn you, if my penis doesn’t work anymore because of this hideous bike I will cut off all your fingers and your dick.” He dusted off the dirt on his shoulders and removed some of the leaves.

Liam’s grin still didn’t go away. “Don’t worry, it will work just fine. I ride my bike all the time and it never affects any of that.”

“I better hope so.”

“So, you want to try it again?”

“No!”

“Oh yes, you will.” Liam got up from the ground. “Don’t be a quitter, grumpy.”

“This is ridiculous. I’d rather spend my time watching little girls in tutus dancing stupidly around the stage than doing this. No, I’d rather watch my mother shaving her legs than doing this.”

“Dude, that’s weird”, Liam replied while he got the bike out of the bushes. “Well, if you won’t try, I will tell Ricky about it.”

“No, you won’t.”

“Yes, I will.”

“No.”

“Yes.”

“No.”

“Yes.”

The two were staring at each other. Alfie of course didn’t forget the fact that Ricky would refuse to sleep with him for a whole week if he wouldn’t at least try and let Liam teach him how to ride a bike. He wasn’t sure if Liam knew about it, but this damn little Irish boy seemed to know exactly what to say in order to make him do it.

“Give me this bloody piece of junk!” Alfie snatched the bike away from him.

“Break a leg!”, Liam said teasingly.

“Oh, I’m going to break something very different if you don’t shut up, little man”, he mumbled.


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81 Re: Growing Up on 17th November 2012, 22:23

In the morning of the same day Lorelai had picked up her little cousin it was a long morning, they had been in all the way in London to get properly tempered. But the picture that made her laugh so hard was when she saw Liam was teaching Alfie in that garden to ride a bike. Jo had hoped Liam was in a good mood when she got home because even when she thought it was a good idea the moment she did it but now looking at herself she wasn’t so sure anymore. She liked it and even when Liam had mentioned it before it still was very different.
Jo watched Alfie and Liam for a while and after a few minutes she had an idea and got Liam’s camera with the big lens he had showed her in America how to use it, so now she took pictures of Alfie and the laughing Liam. He was so handsome and it was weird seeing him so free in the garden made her fall in love all over again. How could she not love him, how could she not want to be with him in bed?
Jo liked it to take pictures of Liam and Alfie, she knew that they would not be as great as the pictures Liam took from her but they would be okay.
Later that afternoon Liam came back inside after Alfie had left. Jo was in the kitchen making dinner, she had made a roasted chicken and potatoes with vegetables all very simply and down to earth just like Liam liked it.

“Hey how did Alfie do during the cycling lesson?” Jo asked and looked shy at Liam brushing her hair out of her face. It was a lot shorter then that morning. Not as short as when Liam had met Jo but still short. Jill and Jane were sitting in their high chairs, Jane was just watching her mommy and started smiling when daddy came in the kitchen, while Jill was sucking at and eating a potato.

“Do you like it? Lorelai and I have been in London and um we passed a hairdresser and I went inside and ask if they have an opening and they did and when the woman asked me what I would like to do I suddenly said to cut it all off.” Jo explained how her short hair happened. “I like it that way.”


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82 Re: Growing Up on 18th November 2012, 18:00

Liam grinned from ear to ear when he saw her with her short hair. He had always liked it the most when it was short, not because he didn’t like long hair on girls, which he did, but he fell in love with Jo with short hair and she had looked so differently than all the other girls that he had usually been attracted to. Jo had been something special, with that short hair, and back then she didn’t always wear dresses but even looked like a little tomboy now and then, and he totally fell in love with that. Of course she was pretty with long hair too, but the short hair had more meaning for him.
“You like it, hm?”, he asked while he pulled her into a hug. “Well, I love it.”

She smiled shyly and expected him to kiss her on the cheek or the head, but to her surprise he kissed her on the lips and it felt exactly how it used to when things were still alright.
That same moment they heard Jane nagging. When they turned around they could see that she made a face.
Jo giggled. “I sometimes get the impression she’s jealous of me and wants you all to herself.”

“No, she could never be jealous of her mum”, he said while he touched Jo’s hair gently. “And we’re going to witness yet another freak-out from your mother.”

“I know.” Jo grinned.

“Is she really going to be at the baptism?”

“Well…she’s the girls’ grandmother after all, there’s nothing that can change the fact, so yes, she will be there.”

“Okay, I’m just asking because I’m worried that she might grab the girls and drown them in the…you know…the stone thingy where babies get baptised…”

“Baptismal font”, Jo said. “And yes, we will make sure she’s not going to drown them in there, after all, we always have Dick to protect them. Speaking of which, you never told me how he reacted to the news that he’s going to be the girls’ godfather.” Jo could see how Liam’s face changed. “What is it?”

“Ehm…”

“Did he say no?”

“Well, eh…he didn’t say much at all, or nothing, for that matter…because he kind of…um…doesn’t know yet that he’s going to be a godfather…or something like that…” Liam smiled innocently.

“Or something like that?” Jo crossed her arms. “Liam, the baptism is in a couple of days, and the reverend is counting on the fact that we already chose a godfather for the girls. How could you not tell him?”

“Well…” He scratched his cheek uncomfortably. “I kind of…um…wanted to surprise him…?”

“Oh Jesus!” Jo rolled her eyes. “You better tell him now before he really says no.”

“But-“

“Tell him!”

“Okay, okay. Don’t worry, he will be totally thrilled about this”, he said, not even trying to hide the sarcasm in his voice.


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83 Re: Growing Up on 18th November 2012, 20:53

The evening when Liam called Dick Jo fell off the chair in laughter. Apparently Dick had not been happy about the idea of being a godfather but in the end he agreed to be the girls godfather. Elizabeth had been calling at least once a day and even on the day of the baptism she had the nerve to call and ask again what kind of dress the girls would wear and what Jo and Liam were wearing. But Jo did not give in and went on with her small baptism plans not even 50 guests were coming and most of the guest were actually the students of Waterfall Downs Academy a tragedy for Elizabeth.

Jo was very nervous when she and Liam were carrying the girls down the aisle of the small church. Elizabeth looked all sour in the front row her granddaughter were not wearing the heirloom dress Elizabeth had even offered to let a duplicate made since Jo had to children since Jo did not want just to baptise one. No Jo and Liam were carrying their daughters in simple white silk dresses no ruffles and lace or anything too insane. They looked very pretty and Jo had a similar matching dress. Liam was wearing a very simple suit, nothing too much over the top so that Liam would feel not too bad.
Liam was super nervous about the whole being in church and promising to raise their daughters with god’s help, but he did good even Dick was behaving well. When the minister put the water on Jane’s head she started screaming like he had tried to drown her only Liam was able to calm her. Jill tried to play with the water and was a little upset when Jo took her away.

The reception was in the garden of Waterfall Downs. Another thing Elizabeth was complaining about.

“I can’t believe you cut your hair again. It just grew all back.” Elizabeth looked disapproval at Jo’s hair.

“Mother I really like it that way so back off.”

“I can’t, everything is wrong no one of the list I gave you is invited. What have you been thinking Josephine?”

“Mother! Please just this time go get a glass of wine and keep all your thought to yourself because look at the girls they like this day and have fun so it is a perfect day.”

Jo looked annoyed at her mother. While she was trying to find her father to take her mother away from her or Liam to rescue her.


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84 Re: Growing Up on 20th November 2012, 16:23

Liam saw that Jo had some troubles with Elizabeth again and was about to go to her, but the same moment Colin already appeared behind his daughter and put his arm around her. Then he also saw Dick, who, as always, stood far away from the others and didn’t bother to make any contact. Typical. Liam still had to thank him for doing this, he really appreciated it. Liam was still holding Jane on his arm when he walked over to her godfather.
“Hey, man.” Liam smiled friendly at him, but Dick, as always, showed no reaction. “I haven’t properly thanked you that for accepting to be the girls’ godfather.”
Dick just muttered something.

“I know babies aren’t you kind of thing. They weren’t my kind of thing either, but I’m already getting used to them, and they are actually not that bad. Well, at least those two girls. I’m not saying that I’m completely into babies now, I’m not a girl.” He waited for Dick to say something, but he was still quiet. “Anyway, you know why I chose you, right?”

Dick raised an eyebrow. “I have no bloody idea”, he grumbled.

“Of course you think it makes no sense. You’re good in killing people, you might think, but actually you forget that you’re good in protecting them too. Well, at least me…”

Dick looked rather awkward, and Liam could tell that he wanted him to change the subject.
“I’m just saying that you’re the person I can count on when it comes to protecting my family, that’s all. I know you don’t like babies, and you don’t have to like them, but I know that you’re one hell of a badass protector.” Liam grinned, he knew how to make Dick uncomfortable.

“Whatever”, the older man mumbled. “But don’t expect me to babysit, because I sure as hell won’t do that.”

“No, don’t worry, when we need someone to look after the girls, we will ask Ricky or Lorelai, so you’re dismissed from that obligation.” Liam looked down at Jane who started to play with his tie. “Do you want to hold her?”

“No.”

“She doesn’t bite.”

“She still does other disgusting things.”

“But-“

“No.”

“Okay, okay.” Liam chuckled. “But anyway, thanks and-“

“I got it”, Dick replied dryly.

“Yes, sir!” Liam couldn’t hold back a smile. He wouldn’t admit it, but now that Dick was the godfather of the girls, he would automatically be more involved in his life as well. Not that he would ever admit it, but it was nice to have him back.



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85 Re: Growing Up on 20th November 2012, 22:15

“Darling, please this is a celebration and Jo organized this beautifully just the way she and Liam live. And I think I mentioned it before that I would like you to let Jo live her life the way she thinks is right.” Colin looked stern at his wife while his arm was tight around Jo’s shoulders. “And I really like your hair princess.”

Elizabeth looked sour at Colin and went away. Colin smiled at Jo. “Thank you daddy, I don’t want mother to think I’m rude or anything. I just don’t think her taste and my and Liam are very different.”

“I know princess. I know.” Colin kissed his daughter on the top of her head.

“Daddy do you know that Liam calls Jane, princess?” Jo whispered.

“Really? I guess I could stop calling you princess.” Colin looked at his son in law in some distance.

“No daddy no need, I just want you to know that there is another girl called princess.”

“I think most fathers call their daughter princess.” Colin looked t Jill in Jo’s arms. “So what does he call Jill?”

“Cupcake.” Jo giggled as she tried to mimic Liam’s accent. Colin burst into laughter.

“I’m glad you met a man with an accent you love.” Colin was still laughing while he asked.

“I not just love this accent, I love Liam with all my heart. And I am very glad that it is going better again, between him and me.”

“I know it can be hard in the beginning with a baby. And you always were so emotional, just take your time. Liam will do everything for you to feel safe and loved.” Colin hugged his daughter tightly.

“I know daddy. Sometimes I wish I could just be the wife he wishes to have.”

“He will have you back soon, very soon.”

Jo nodded and kissed her father on the cheek. “Thanks daddy. I love you.”

“I love you too, and of course you my little wild angel.” Colin kissed Jo and then Jill on the cheeks.
Jo went over to Liam and Dick.

“Hey handsome.” Jo leaned close and kissed Liam on the side from his mouth. “Dick.” Jo smiled at the older man. “I am really thankful that you are the godfather of Jane and Jill, it means a lot to Liam and me. I know you took good care of him, and for some time even for me. I’m so glad to know that if we ever need someone to protect the girls with all weapons we can count on you.”

Dick look uncomfortable away.

“Oh Liam I think it is time to nurse Jane. Would you take Jill?”

“You are not going to do it right here are you?” Liam looked shocked at his wife.

“No I’m going inside I also need to change her nappy.” Jo smiled and she and Liam exchanged daughters. “Oh and Liam can you supervise the set up of the bonfire? I don’t want the students burn themselves to a crisp.” Jo kissed Liam again.


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86 Re: Growing Up on 22nd November 2012, 15:28

He waited until she was gone, then he turned back to Dick. “That’s my queue. You don’t have to stay if you don’t want to, you actually stayed longer than I expected.” He grinned. “Anyway, thanks for coming.” He didn’t have the time to say much more because he could already see a group of the boys playing around with the firewood so he quickly walked over to them to make sure they wouldn’t get any stupid ideas in their heads. When he was that age he would have already done something stupid, and then his mother would have gotten a call again for the misbehaviour of her son. That happened all the time. Liam had just been mindlessly bored among the kids his age, so he had always looked for something to keep him entertained, even if that meant blowing up a few things now and then.
While he watched the children he noticed Alfie talking to a few of the 9 and 10-year old girls. Something was wrong with that picture. Very wrong. As he walked closer to hear what they were talking about, he could already see the shocked expressions on the girls’ faces.

“Hello…”, Liam said slowly, looking from the girls to his friend. “What’s going on here?”

“Hey, little man. I was just helping those girls out with a few things.”

Liam looked sceptical. “Helping them out?” He glanced back to the girls who stood there with wide eyes and open mouths. “With what exactly are you helping them out?”

“Well, they decided to come up to me and bother me with their ridiculously stupid questions, and I gave them answers”, Alfie said very matter-of-factly.

“Um…what did they ask you?”

“Stupid stuff, like how they make boys like them and what they have to do.”

“Oh no!” Liam quickly turned around to his students. “Girls, whatever you just heard, forget it! Do not think about it! Just pretend that you never talked to Alfie in the first place. Just…go and play with the others.”

The girls stared at him, then very slowly nodded, turned around and ran away. Liam took a deep breath, still holding Jill in his arm. “I don’t even want to know what you told them but you can’t talk to little girls like you talk to adults, you know?”

“What? I just gave them some very valuable information. Apparently they haven’t been educated properly yet, one of them didn’t even seem to know what a vagina was, at least she looked very dumb…”

“God, Alfie, you didn’t…” Liam sighed. “Okay, let’s just hope they quickly forget. I’m actually surprised you came, I mean, I invited you but I was sure you would find an excuse to get around it since everything related to babies is not really your thing…”

“Believe me, I’ve been to worse things. Ever since I was born I was dragged to events three times worse than a baby’s…um…what is this today about?”

“Baptism.”

“Right.” Alfie looked at Jill. There were actually two reasons he came. One was, Liam invited him, and he didn’t want to be rude to his friend, even though Liam would have understood if he wouldn’t have come, but still. The second reason was that he was always worried when Ricky went to occasions like this alone. If he just went to visit Liam and Jo, that was okay, but events like this usually meant that Ricky would run into mean rich people, and Alfie wanted to make sure Ricky wouldn’t necessarily have to run into those people unless it was unavoidable. He knew Ricky was okay on the university’s campus because there was a mix of different people, so yes, there were a lot of mean kids in between, but also ‘normal’ ones. But on parties that Lady Elizabeth Williams organised, Alfie could be sure that Ricky would run into some of the worst people. Surprisingly, this baptism party didn’t seem to be organised by Elizabeth since there were mainly students and the staff and family instead of Oxford’s upper class. Of course Alfie wouldn’t tell Liam why he actually came to those parties. That would only look like he cared too much. Which he didn’t. Of course he didn’t. Why would he care?

Jill’s head was turned towards him and she stretched out her arm.
“What’s with her?”, Alfie asked sceptically.

“I’m not that sure. I’ve already noticed that she gets kind of excited when she sees you. Though I have to admit I’m not sure if I’m happy about that…” He looked down at his daughter who still stretched out her arm to Alfie and giggled. “I hope she doesn’t develop a thing for bad boys, I would totally lock her in a tower for the rest of her life.”

“At least she has taste”, he said dryly. “Is she supposed to be that bold or is she ever getting some hair? If she stays bold like this, she’ll never get laid.”

Liam cleared his throat. “Yes, she will get hair, and no, she will never get laid, not under my watch.”

Alfie let out a dry laugh. “There’s no way you’ll get her to stay a virgin forever. She will do it when you still think she dreams of ponies and butterflies.”

“You know, I actually feel uncomfortable talking about my daughter’s virginity, especially with you out of all people”, Liam said while he kissed Jill’s soft head. “No, no, Jill, you’re not going to get excited about Uncle Alfie, don’t get used to it.”

“Believe me, she won’t. Kids hate me.”

“Yeah, that might be, but she won’t be a kid forever…”

“Well, if she has hair by then, tell her to give ma call.”

Liam eyed his friend sceptically. “Don’t even think about it.” Then a grin appeared on his face. “It’s men like you I have to keep her away from. You guys are potential danger for my daughters.”

“Look at you, all protective… Well, it’s guys like me girls have the best sex with, so if you want to do your daughters a favour-“

“No!”

“Okay, okay.” Alfie shrugged his shoulders and looked at Jill who still grinned at him. “Don’t worry, she won’t get my interest for at least another sixteen years.”
Liam just stared at him.
“Joking”, Alfie added. He could tell that Liam was damn serious about this. “Lighten up man, I’m not getting into your daughter’s knickers.”

“I certainly hope so.”

“I mean, look at her…she’s…she’s so…” Alfie paused for a moment while he tried not to offend Liam’s daughter. He just never understood why people got so excited about babies. “Small.”

“Yes, she is, and I hope she stays small for a very, very, very long time.”

“Well, I can still give her advice if she-“

“Oh, I think if she needs advice I’d prefer not to send her to you, I just remembered all those shocked faces of the girls you have given advice to and my daughters don’t need to know various sex positions at the age of five.”

“That’s a shame.”

“However…” Liam grinned. “You can teach them how to ride a bike, I heard you’re a professional.”

“Oh, shut up, Leprechaun.”

“There’s Jo, I have to help her with watching the kids”, Liam said when he saw Jo coming back outside with a sleepy-looking Jane in her arm. “Stay away from the girls. And the boys. And no more advice giving.” He turned around and walked back to Jo and kissed her on the cheek.
“As soon as the girls have hair, we will lock them in a tower.”

“What?” She looked confused.

“Just trust me.”


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87 Re: Growing Up on 24th November 2012, 11:25

Jo smiled and kissed Liam. “I do.”

Liam look a little surprised at Jo but when he saw the look she had in her eyes she meant it in a very special way, this one way he thought she would never do it again. But here she was his beautiful wife, the most shining star between them all telling him that she trusted him. He sat down on one of the logs that surrounded the bonfire place. There was another cooler in which left over barbeque things were and Lorelai had made dough for stickbread. The students had been collecting and preparing long sticks so that they could roast food over the fire, not to mention that during that process already half of the marshmallows got eaten but they had a good time and as long as they did not went crazy Liam would not interfere with them lighting the bonfire. Jo was sitting on a cushion on the ground in front of him, Jane was sleeping in her cradle next to them while Jo still tried to calm Jill down that she would fall asleep which never worked. Jill was screaming so much that Jo had considered that something is wrong with her just like she had worried that something was wrong with Jane because she was barely screaming but both girls had the Irish health of their daddy. Jill was just a night-owl and didn’t want to sleep, Jo assumed Jill feared to miss anything happening. Liam’s legs were on each side of Jo protecting her and the younger one of the twins. This celebrations was half as bad as he feared it would be, of course Elizabeth was sitting with a sour face on the side of the bonfire place but when did his mother in law not have a sour face? Dick had been there for a long time and Liam was sure he had heard one of the maids mentioning the creepy guy would be in the house. Liam grinned probably checking for any terrorists in there.
After a while of waiting and Liam keeping a close eye on the students that were allowed to light the fire the bonfire started to burn just as they had planned it during the week. Liam knew all students even when he had not all students in his advanced classes, some had the basic classes but he still knew them, he knew their families and their situations at home. He was sometimes surprised how much more he liked Waterfall Downs filled with them. Every student turned the house into a vibrating living thing and that was how this house was supposed to be. In a little distance the house was standing dark and dangerous, the way to the house was lit with real torches but that didn’t change the fact how dark the house was. It must have been so lonely to grow up in this huge house for a girl like Jo.
Liam leaned forward and kissed first his big J and then his little J. “Next event on the schedule is teaching Jill to sleep through the night and then her mommy and I can have a very special night.”

Jo turned half around, Jill was finally getting sleepy she had stopped crying but only because of the tumult around her and the fact that she was allowed to sleep on mommy’s arms. “I would like that very much.” And for the first time since the girls were born Liam saw the Jo he met so many years ago. She was back, completely and whole and Liam knew she was stronger than before. Even when she was in a dark place during summer it did not break her it just made her stronger.

“I love you Liam Seamus O’Doherty with all my heart!” Jo whispered as she pulled his head closer to kiss him passionately. Some of the students made fun of them but no one meant it in an evil way, they were glad they had their Missis Jo back and all of them were looking forward to the day she would return into her class and challenge their thoughts about books.


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88 Re: Growing Up on 26th November 2012, 14:00

The day ended very peacefully. Sometime during the bonfire Jo and Liam were joined by Graham and Colin, who just couldn’t get enough of their granddaughters, and of course Ricky stopped by to look at the girls. If he had the time he would probably stop by every single day to see how the girls were doing.
By the time everyone was gone and Jo and Liam took the girls back upstairs, the poor parents were so tired that they barely managed to keep their eyes open, but Jo had to feed Jane again who suddenly got hungry, and just shortly after they went to bed, Jill started crying again and within the next couple of hours Liam found himself sitting next to her crib, telling her in Irish a fairy tale that he heard when he was little. She always stopped sobbing when he started talking to her, but after he left again she started crying, and that went on through the entire night.
The next morning, while Liam brushed his teeth and washed his face –and discovered that the shadows under his eyes got bigger due to the lack of sleep- Jo suddenly showed up behind him. He saw her reflected in the mirror, so he turned around.
“Hey, you’re up early. Was I too loud?”

“No, it’s not that”, she said, looking still sleepy. “It’s about Jill.”

“What about her? Is she up again?”

“No, in the morning, when all of us get up, she sleeps like a rock. Obviously, since she has hours of crying behind her.”

“Oh yes, last night was quite some fun again”, Liam mumbled while he dried his face with a towel.

“I think we need to do something against that”, Jo said calmly. “I mean, yes, I know, babies cry, but if Jill gets the impression that every time she cries someone comes and keeps her entertained, she will only continue crying in order to get what she wants, you know?”

Liam nodded. “Yes, makes sense. But how can we stop her crying if we don’t go to her?”

“We won’t stop her crying at first, but I think we need to try letting her cry without going to her at all. I think that’s the only possibility to make her understand that she can’t always expect us to get up every single time she cries. She will never stop crying if we do so. She has to learn that she doesn’t get attention every time she cries.” Jo took a deep breath. “I know that sounds cruel and just the thought of it is killing me, but that’s the only choice we have, and I have read it in many parenting books as well, so it’s not some crazy idea I just came up with.”

He was quiet for a moment, but then he nodded. “Well, if it works…”

“We need to start doing it as soon as possible, otherwise she gets too used to us coming into her room every time she cries. Babies aren’t that dumb, they know what to do in order to get what they want.”

“Oh yes, I noticed that”, Liam mumbled. “But what about Jane? She’s definitely going to wake up if her sister cries through the night.”

“Yes, I know, that’s why she should sleep in our room just for the time while Jill is learning to adjust.”

“At least Jane is quiet most of the time.”

“Let’s hope she’ll stay that way and doesn’t think that just because she can sleep with us she has the permission to stay awake.”

“Oh, better not.”
That same moment they heard one of the girls, and of course it was early bird Jane, who was now wide awake. Unlike her sister she had slept quietly through the night.


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89 Re: Growing Up on 27th November 2012, 20:54

It was the third night in which Jill screamed her tiny lungs out. Jo and Liam moved from their bedroom into Jane’s that way they were closer to Jill. Jane was peacefully sleeping in their bedroom. It was three in the morning and Jo and Liam tried to take turn and sleep in between their turns. They were now to every ninety minutes, every ninety minutes one of them went into Jill’s room and said the same lines.

“Jillian darling, everything is okay. You can go to sleep now because it is sleepy time. Mommy, daddy and Jane are all okay and are sleeping too and we see each other in the morning again. So close your eyes and go to sleep. I love you very, very much, I always will.”

Jo was curled up against Liam chest when she mumbled. “What if she never stops?”

“She will stop, the book said it can take up to three or even four nights until she stops screaming and she will fall asleep. She is smart she will understand what we want from her.” Liam had wrapped his arms around Jo, holding her close. They both were exhausted and they were so lucky that Betty was watching the girls during the day so that they could get at least a little sleep, but this screaming was breaking Jo’s heart and Liam was worried he was worried it was too much for her yet to handle. “Jo are you okay?”

“Yes.” Jo mumbled. “Just so tired. Is it time to go in again?”

“Not yet another half an hour and it is mine turn so try to sleep a little.” Liam kissed Jo on the top of her head since he couldn’t reach her lips. To calm Jo down he was gently playing with her hair, he loved her short hair. It worked as so often when and Jo was upset, he calmed her down and managed that she fell asleep. When it was time to go into Jill’s room he managed to get her off his chest still sleeping, but the picture he found there shocked him so much. He ran back into Jane’s room and shook Jo. “Jo, Jo wake up!”

Jo jumped up still sleepy and confused. “Is there a fire?”

“No fire but Jill.”

Jo looked confused at Liam, who was smiling widely. “Come with me but be quiet.”

Liam took Jo’s hand, the way they used to hold hands in the very beginning their relationship and there she was in her bed tightly snuggled into her kangaroo it was as tall as she was and she was deeply asleep. It was something after three in the morning and Jill was asleep. “She is sleeping?!” Liam whispered but when he turned to Jo he saw her crying and there it was the fear that this was too much for her. He gently led her out of Jill’s nursery and closed the door.

“Jo its okay she is just sleeping.” Liam wrapped his arms around Jo tightly, he felt her nod.

“I know I’m just so happy, I’m okay just so happy she is sleeping.” Jo whispered into Liam’s chest.

“Are you sure?” Liam sounded so worried, and suddenly it his Jo.

“I am so sorry that you had to take care of me. I didn’t mean to be so unstable. I am sorry. So unbelievable sorry.” Jo was breathing slowly in and smelling Liam’s scent. It was hard to say what that actually was but he smelt like Liam, like the safest place in the world. “You know that you were the best thing that happened to me.”

Liam dryly laughed remembering all the times he had hurt Jo.

“Liam listen all my life when Mother was this cold cruel woman I always felt it. It was hidden but there was this seed of rebellion in me. And when you came this seed it grew and blossomed. You made me strong, you made me brave enough to speak up to my mother and to become a real person. I never want to be without you.” Jo tiptoed and kissed Liam. “I mean it. And I can’t believe Jill is asleep.” Jo felt this million butterflies in her stomach and she loved it and she had missed it so much over the summer.


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90 Re: Growing Up on 28th November 2012, 12:41

“I’m glad you became braver and I could help you with that”, he said.
But that still doesn’t change the fact that I’m the person who hurt you the most, so many times. Sometimes I think I spent more hours on making your life miserable than happy…

“I would have never stood up against my mother if it wasn’t for you. I would have stayed her little doll forever, and she would have continued making every single decision on my life.”

“Well, now it makes sense why she likes me so much”, Liam said sarcastically.

“And if you wouldn’t have come into my life when you did, she would have announced my engagement to Victor that same year.”

Liam made a face. “You think you two would have had an ugly baby like Maggy and he have? That would be pretty harsh.”

“Just the thought of him being the father of my children-“

“Would delight your mother.”

“And would kill me”, Jo said while they lay back down on the bed, both very tired and exhausted. She was holding his hand and the back of it. “And now I have two beautiful girls…”

“The prettiest”, he said quietly.

“The prettiest”, she mumbled and then fell asleep.

An hour later, Liam woke up again, but not because Jill was crying. No, it was completely quiet. Still, he wanted to check on her and got up carefully, trying not to wake Jo up, but she woke up anyway.

“What is it?”, she mumbled sleepy. “Is Jill…is she okay?”

“I think she’s still sleeping”, Liam said and went into Jill’s room. Jo followed him, and both parents stood next to her crib and watched their sleeping daughter.

“I can’t believe it”, Jo mumbled happy.

“Me neither.”
They were still so tired that they had to sit down on the couch, and before they even had the chance to get excited about the fact that Jill was really sleeping, they already fell asleep on the couch.


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91 Re: Growing Up on 28th November 2012, 21:50

Betty smiled when she saw the two parents snuggled up sleeping on the couch. That looks like another long night.

Betty went in the kitchen to make some breakfast the parents when she heard Jane gurgle in Jo’s and Liam’s bedroom. “Come here girly, let’s make your parents some proper pancakes not this British poor version. You mamma and daddy needs some proper food. Did your sister finally fall asleep during the night? I told ya she will. I told ya.” Betty flirted with the little girl in the high chair that was happily sucking on a piece of toast.

It was a wonderful September day, the sun was shining and it was still warm. Jo was barely awake until noon. She was half sleeping while she breastfed the girls.

“Hey Liam it is Saturday maybe we… um we could go to town and have lunch there? Ricky told me about a new café he said it is really nice there.” Jo whispered after she came out of the shower just dressed in a towel around wrapped around her. And it was not one of those super big towels it was the normal towel one where he could see her curves under and her so sexy legs. Liam looked at her for a while, he hadn’t seen her like this since a very long time and he was surprised and happy and worried and so turned on right now.

“Liam?” Jo asked again. He had been sitting with the girls on the floor Jane sleeping again while Jill was staring at the clouds through the skylight and he had been grading some papers.

“Um yes that sounds like a plan, but you get dressed more right?” He looked again at her body and was so glad that several papers were lying on his lap.

“Yes I am. Just give me a few minutes I gonna get dressed and put on some makeup.” Jo smiled but Liam’s look went a little sour. “No worries it is just a little to cover those dark circles under my eyes. I look like I partied all week.”

“Okay. I’ll get the girls ready.” Liam pulled Jo gently and carefully closer and kissed her. “You look lovely the way you are.”

“In a towel?”

“Yup even just dressed in a towel.” Jo was bending over since he was sitting on the floor.

“Okay you get now dressed or…” Liam started but realised that Jo might take it wrongly since there was this one time he actually could not contain his lust and nearly raped his wife.

“Or you want to do things the girls are not old enough to see until they are thirty got it.” Jo kissed Liam once more passionately on his so soft Irish lips and then went into their bedroom to get dressed. She took the simple white cotton dress that had buttons in the front and a normal pair of tights and a pale yellow cardigan and she wore her nice summer heels which were barely an inch more like a quarter inch high. And she knew that Liam didn’t like her wearing makeup so she went easy on the lipstick and just had a lip balm which was colourless. When she came back in the living room the girls were ready dressed and so was Liam, he even had the huge back for them in which everything they need was in and then he looked up and saw his wife standing there so beautifully in the midday light.

“You are wonderful just the way you are.” Liam burst out. Jo looked down at herself and smiled.

“Thank you.” She picked up Jill, Jo knew that Liam would take Jane and the bag since he didn’t want her to walk down the stairs with one of his precious babies and the bag. Jo was excited this was the first time the world would actually see her little family and she was proud of this moment. She was smiling when she had sneaked away the car key from Liam so that they would arrive today in town and not next week. The café looked so nice from outside.

“This will be nice don’t you?” Jo asked while she pushed the pram Liam had built for her since prams where not made for twins.


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92 Re: Growing Up on 29th November 2012, 16:18

“Yes, I’m sure it will.” He kissed her on the cheek, then they went inside. The café looked very nice, decorated in a British and comfortable style, and nothing too fancy. Luckily the café wasn’t too overcrowded because Liam worried that one on the girls- most likely Jill- would start screaming and he knew how uptight the higher society of Oxford could be, so that’s why he hoped this wasn’t going to be some super fancy café with rich people all over the place. It was more down-to-earth but still very charming. They followed a waitress who led them to a window seat where they had enough space for the girls’ pram.
This felt so normal, them being in a café with their daughters, finally leaving the protecting walls from Waterfall Downs. It was also nice that Jo was the one who suggested it. She really seemed to improve by the day and wasn’t as scared as she used to be during the past summer months.

“I’m glad we’re doing this”, Jo said. “We didn’t go out very much the past months.”

“We didn’t go out at all, at least not together.”

“I’m sorry if I was-“

“Don’t apologise all the time”, he said while he reached for her hand and squeezed it gently. “I know you had a hard time. We just put all of that behind and go ahead with our lives.” He looked to his daughters in their pram. Jill was sleeping this time, and Jane observed the area quietly. She was the quietest baby he had ever seen. Sometimes he wondered if everything was okay with her since she was unusually quiet, but he knew just as well that she could scream if she wanted, he only had to get her in contact with water and she screamed her little lungs out.
When he turned back to Jo, he could see that something was wrong. “What is it, Jo?”

“I don’t understand…”

“What?”

“I just fed them before we left.”

Liam looked confused at her. “Hm?”

Jo looked around and then whispered. “I’m leaking…”

He still needed a moment to understand what’s going on, but then he saw how Jo quickly closed her cardigan.
“Oh…” He was quiet for a moment. “You’re…um…are you wet?”

“What?” Jo took a deep breath. “I’m leaking, so yes.”

“Can you…ehm…can you stop it?”

“No, I can’t stop it, Liam. I think I have to feed the girls again.” She looked anything but happy, and neither did he.

“Here? In a public place like this?”

“I have no other choice. I can go to the bathroom though…”

“No, that’s unsanitary”, he said and got up. “Wait here, I’ll be right back.” He went to the waitress and asked her if they could have the seat that was farthest in the corner. She looked a bit confused but nodded and helped them with their bags while Liam pushed the pram. He waited until she was gone, then he sat in a way that made it impossible for others to see Jo unless they got up and stood right next to their table, but nobody was close enough. He just wanted to make sure that no perverts would check his wife out while she was feeding the babies.
“It’s okay now”, Liam said calmly. “Nobody can see you from here.”


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93 Re: Growing Up on 1st December 2012, 22:13

Jo looked for several seconds at Liam, and then she nodded but she had tears in her eyes and she was biting on her lower lip. Liam saw that Jo was about to break apart he leaned forward and kissed her until he felt that her lips followed his kiss and she stopped biting on it.

“Jo are you okay?” Liam whispered.

“No, my boobs are leaking and leaving two wet spots on my dress and I am about to open my dress in full public café. What if someone looks at me?” Jo whispered back.

“I will kill him, seriously I will.” Liam brushed Jo’s short hair out of her face. Jo nodded shy when Liam gave her the still wide awake Jane that was now that they have moved tables just starring at everything again. She really was a funny baby. Jo unbuttoned her dress and opened her bra so that her oldest daughter could drink. She still felt weird in showing her breast in public. Not until Liam brushed with his thumbs the tears from her cheeks.

“I’m okay. Really Liam, just nervous I don’t want anyone to see my breasts…” Jo still couldn’t look at Liam until she suddenly looked up. “I don’t want anyone to be able to see my breasts except of you. The husband I love with all my heart. I am so sorry about the way I was during summer. I never wanted to reject you, but I think I wanted to reject myself I did reject myself. I thought that’s what happens when a woman becomes a mother that the man doesn’t want her anymore. I know it is stupid but… I dunno that’s how I felt.” Jo’s voice got quieter the more she said.

“Excuse me but you can’t do this here. This is scandalous, you can’t get naked in the café.” The waitress appeared behind Liam and starred at Jo’s breast that was partly covered by Jane’s head. Jo started blushing and slightly shivering.

“But I’m not naked… I mean…” Jo mumbled looking help searching at Liam.

“Well people can see your breasts and that is not appropriated here. I have to ask you to cover up or maybe go to the lady’s room to do this.


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94 Re: Growing Up on 2nd December 2012, 16:15

Liam stared at the waitress, very tempted to punch her square in the face. No, he didn’t have anger issues and no, he wasn’t that stereotypical Irish and just punched random people, but as soon as someone insulted his wife he became a little more Irish than he perhaps wanted to. Not only did she stare at Jo’s breast- which he could kind of deal with because she was a woman herself- but she could see that Jo was uncomfortable and that waitress still had the nerve to make her feel even more uncomfortable than she already was.

“Is there a law that forbids feeding children?”, Liam asked a bit annoyed. Actually, if he hadn’t been a father and had seen a woman breastfeeding in public, he would have freaked out too. But that was a different story. Of course it was, because now it was Jo he had to defend.

“It’s just not appropriate, that’s why I ask you to do it at least out of the public eye. Feel free to go to the lady’s room”, she said, her face turned to Jo.

“Can we…can we just go?”, Jo asked Liam shyly. “Please?”

He nodded. “Sure.” He got up, grabbed the bags and the sleeping Jill who now woke up, while Jo quickly buttoned her cardigan as they left the café. Jane started to complain since she was interrupted in the middle of her meal.

“I’ll just…ehm…I’ll continue feeding her in the car”, Jo mumbled.

“You sure?”

“Well, that’s better than in the toilet.”

“Wait, let me help you.” He opened the back door of their car. Luckily there was nobody around who could watch them. “Okay, you can lean against me if that makes it a bit more comfortable.”

“That would be nice.” She waited until he sat on the backseat, Jill next to him, then she climbed in as well and found a comfortable position, her back pressed against him. He could feel her relax while she continued feeding Jane. He rubbed her shoulders gently.

“Are you okay?”

“Yes, thank you.”

Liam made sure nobody who passed their car stopped and looked inside, he also tried to cover her as much as possible. It was nice, feeling Jo so close to him and breathing in her vanilla scent. It was too nice. He wasn’t quick enough to take control of what was going to happen next, and well, even if he would have been quick enough he still wouldn’t have been able to control it. He was just so aroused by her, he couldn’t help it. Especially since the pregnancy and since her body had started to change, he was just so crazy about her, and the worst thing was, he couldn’t have her now that he really, really wanted her. He hoped she didn’t notice how much he wanted her right now, but that was very unlikely since she basically sat in his lap. He quickly tried to think of something that turned him off…old dudes in Lederhosen…ehm…Napoleon…Lady Elizabeth Williams in a bikini…eh…

“Liam…”

Oh shit. He could tell that she was freaked out, he could hear it in her voice. She totally knew, well, felt what was going on.
“I’m sorry”, he mumbled, almost sounding ashamed.

“I…I…just…I’m not ready yet. I’m sorry too.”

“I know.” He cleared his throat. “Please don’t get the wrong impression, I don’t want you to feel pressured, it just…it…I can’t always stop when it happens…ehm…but it has nothing to do with me wanting to push you.” He kissed her gently on the top of her head. “I’m sorry, Jo. Take all the time you need.”


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95 Re: Growing Up on 2nd December 2012, 19:39

Jo nodded. “I’m so sorry that I told you that it is time to shave and then when we try to do it I back away and disappoint you.”

Jo looked upset away from Liam, she was hating herself for being this way. She hated that she was not able to pleasure her husband in that ways she wished to.
Liam wrapped his arms around her and kissed her on the cheek. “You never disappointed me, ever.” For a moment he was worried that maybe he not ought to pull her so close to him but she pressed her body tight against his as if she wanted to be one with him.
As soon Jo had fed both girls they drove back to Waterfall Downs. And to Liam’s surprise Jo did not see their trip as a failure, she was smiling again after she got changed and cleaned up and was spending time with a few students and the twins in the library. It were her students of her class and they missed her. Liam was sitting in a corner and was grading a few papers and kept an eye on his J’s. And he loved to see his smiling and laughing Jo, talking about books and their thoughts about it. It was the girl he fell in love with all those years ago.

“Liam, hey do you mind if we eat downstairs with the students?” Jo asked hugging him from behind and reading the paper over his shoulder, she understood not one word -sort of-.

“No it is fine. You like this don’t you?” Liam looked at the students that were talking about different books while they kept an eye on the twins and surprisingly Jane was the one sleeping while Jill was listening to the students reading bits from books to talk about them. They were talking about religion in books and how it was written in words that not included any religious words.

“I love it. And I miss teaching so much but I’m not ready to go back to teach again but maybe I can come down and do this like a out of class book group once a week, I can take the girls with me and watch them while I talk to the students. I promise I won’t stay long.” Jo looked at Liam with those doe eyes, with those sparking doe eyes. Liam saw his Jo in those eyes, it were those eyes that made him believe that she was better. Jo kissed Liam again, and then again.

“Sure. If you feel up to it. Maybe you should do it a little flexible so that if you not feel well enough one day it is not dramatic if you not have the group.” Liam didn’t mean to be rude just that she knew she didn’t have to teach the group. A small shadow went over Jo’s face and he knew right away that he had hurt her… again. “I mean-“

“Thank you.”

“What?” Liam looked confused at Jo.

“For watching out for me, I think that’s why I prefer doing this group and not yet teach because I will have days where I can’t come down and be with those kids so yes I would like having it more like a flexible group and not a firm set class.” Jo mumbled as her hands wandered down his chest. He looked at her hands, this was a move she did when she wanted more. He expected her to realize the same and pull her hands away very suddenly but she didn’t. She was hugging him still standing behind him with her arms around his neck resting on his chest. Jo leaned forward and kissed Liam again.

“Any time Honeybun. That’s my job.” Liam whispered enjoying his wife’s touch. Jo went back to the group and they all were thrilled to hear that they would do it on a regular basis.

It was a long day when Jo and Liam went to bed, well Liam was in bed while Jo was still in the bathroom. He started to worry when she suddenly opened the door and stood in the doorframe dressed in red lingerie including a look-through very short red nightgown. “Hey there…” She said sounding nervous and seductively at the same time.
Liam actually dropped his book and sat up straight in bed not able to say a lot. He saw how nervous Jo was, he even saw that she was shivering even though he was not sure if she was shivering because she was cold or nervous. And then it happened again, she blushed and wrapped her arms around her stomach. “I’m sorry this is stupid and…”

“No, no it is not stupid you look so hot. Jo, um can I get up and um you know come closer?” Liam asked. He felt like he wanted to jump up and touch his super hot wife. Jo nodded shy.

“You don’t think I look silly?” Jo mumbled as he got up, a lot slower then he wanted to but he didn’t want to scare Jo.

“Are you kidding me? You are so hot!” Liam gently pulled her hands away from her stomach and pulled her closer. “Jo are you sure about this? I mean do you really want this?” He whispered just as he started kissing his wife.

“I do. I promise, I really do. Just…” she kissed him back and he felt that she wanted him.

“But?” He asked very gentle even though he had a really hard time to be patient in this very moment with his so sexy wife.

Jo took a deep breath. “I think I forgot how it works, and I’m scared that it is different. I mean I squeezed two babies out of… my private parts and I don’t want it to be different for you. I loved it to sleep with you before the girls and now I’m so scared that I will not satisfy you anymore.” Jo’s voice was broken and a lot like after their first time when she was so scared of going to hell because of what they did. Liam pulled Jo into his arms.

“Don’t worry about it, it will come back to you. You know the whole part how it works it came to you when we did it the first time didn’t it?” Liam asked into her ear. Jo nodded but he felt the tears. “Listen we don’t have to go all the way is you don’t want to.”

“No, no I want to. Can we just um go slowly? One step at a time.” Jo whispered embarrassed.

“Yes and you tell me when I do something that… that hurt you or you don’t like. Promise me that Jo.” Liam smelt her vanilla scent, Jo nodded again. Liam let go of her but took her hand to lead her to the bed.

“Liam?”

“Yes?”

“My body, not just you know my um… you know, all my body has changed and even though I lost all the pregnancy weight it is still different and…”

“And I love every inch of it!” He said stern. Jo smiled shyly at him. He was very gently when he started kissing her, and he was so glad that she followed his lead but he was still very careful since he didn’t want her to push her further then she wanted to go. And he wanted not to get to excited about it, he didn’t want to get excited and then has to cool off again because Jo wanted him to stop. So when she pulled her nightgown over her head he was actually surprised. Jo was serious, he felt that her kisses and her touch were full of lust and she did not back away when she felt that he was really attracted to her. When she suddenly stopped his hand as he took off her bra.

“Liam?”

He looked at her.

“My boobs are really sensitive and a little sore from all the nursing and I don’t say don’t touch them, I know you like boobs but um be gentle okay?” Jo bit her lower lip worried that she just took all the heat out of it when she mentioned nursing. But Liam smiled and very carefully kissed Jo’s right boob and it felt so good. Liam grinned when he managed to get her to start moaning as his touch her body in many places she liked to be touched, at least used to like. He was glad she stilled liked the way he touched her, and she actually was very calm when they were naked exploring each other’s bodies. Jo liked it very much that his shoulders got wider she had seen him swim a lot the past months and it really turned her on. Liam was surprised and so happy when they went further and they actually did it until he suddenly felt her stiffen under him and it froze his heart. He did it again just like a few months again he forced her to sleep with him only difference this time he succeeded he was actually raping his wife. Liam backed away from Jo.

“No Liam don’t stop, please. I’m okay.” Jo begged him trying to pull him back onto her.

“Jo you are not okay and you clearly don’t want me to do this, why are you forcing yourself?” Liam sat up and looked at his wife.

“I’m not I swear.” Jo sat up too and first tried to cover her boobs with her arms but then let it go, he had promised that he liked her body even when she didn’t.

“So tell me why you get all stiff when we are having sex?” Liam tried not to sound disappointed but he couldn’t really ban it out of his voice.

“Because… is it different? For you? Do I feel different?”

“God dammit Jo, can you stop this.” Liam didn’t mean to shout but he was annoyed and angry of how much he wanted his wife.
Jo flinched when Liam raised his voice. “I’m sorry Liam.” Jo closed her eyes and Liam saw what she did, he saw she was trying herself from stopping to cry.

“Jo?”

“I’m okay.”

“No you are not and I want you to stop pretending that-“

“I’m scared how to realize how much I missed this.” Jo blurted out.

Liam looked surprised at her. “What?”

“I don’t want you to think I am a slut, because this… when you were… it feels so right. I never felt any closer to you as the moments we had sex and even now after all this time and it was just a very short moment but… I’m scared you think I am nothing but a horny cheap slut because this short moment you and I were together tonight is so amazing that I wish we could never stop. I remember how it was and at the same time it does feel different. Oh god I’m so sorry to say this but it hurts a little.”

Liam looked a while at his naked wife just thinking about what she just had dared to tell him and then realised that it made sense, even though she was technically a virgin again but she was in a way one again and it was her second first time and especially because he knew about the bleedings and injuries and the stitches she had needed, he felt like kicking himself. “I’m sorry I didn’t mean to shout and I didn’t mean to hurt you. I don’t think you are a slut and I don’t want you to call yourself that. I know you liked having sex with me and I was hoping you would again. I’m sorry I got carried away, I forgot that it might hurt you the first few times.” Liam’s hand was slowly moving up her thigh. “I’ll be gentler okay?”

Jo nodded smiling and let her husband push her into the pillows again, not in a bad pushy way but in a good way. Liam was what he had promised he was gentler and still got what they both wanted.
Afterwards Jo’s head was resting on Liam’s chest, he was playing with her hair while he was grinning like a maniac. This second first time was amazing just like their first first time.

“Are you okay?” He whispered, Jo just nodded. She was thinking about something, something that was on her mind for a very long while.

“Liam can I tell you something?”

“Sure.” Liam was nervous. Jo got up and kissed him before she got a few drawings out of her nightstand and handed them to Liam.

“This is why I was so scared the first time, well after the first time we did it. When I was little and Mother had the talk with me it was… I don’t know. She never let me attend sex education class in school so um I just know her version and I don’t know you don’t look like on the drawings and I’m confused.”

Liam starred at the so anatomically wrong drawings he wanted to say so many things but for once he waited, he would not do the same mistake twice and hurt the girl he loved so much after their first time. “What did she tell you?” Was all he asked.

This is a man’s genital and to put a baby into a woman’s womb the Lord found a horrible punishment for Eve’s wrongdoing in the paradise. This is the woman’s flower and you see how small everything is in it so to put a baby into a woman the man pushed his genital into the woman’s flower. And the Lord gave them a lust that will break every woman’s love, but there is no better feeling as pushing into a woman’s flower. The poor do things to their flowers to widen them because they need many children to keep at least some alive, they do horrible things and sometimes even let men they are not married to enter them. This is a horrible sin, they will suffer for that forever in hell. No woman ever felt good when a man entered them. Except the ones that did it in sin. It is a first sign of hell. They think it is a good thing but they will slowly die on the inside. And that is not the only punishment the Lord put on us Josephine, a man will never enter hell for forcing himself into a woman even when they are not married. There is no greater pain then when a man enters your flower Josephine, you might think that you love a man and it will be different with him but you are wrong. The fires of hell will wait for you as soon you let a man touch you. Do you understand me? The Lord made men with so much lust that it will be satisfying to feel your flower bleed and your heart break. To bring honour to this family you will never give in a men’s desire and let him push you into hell. And you should when you are married make sure that you give birth to a male heir so that you might be spared by the Lord and your husband will spare you from more torture and he will not enter you again because it is a men’s pleasure to take the innocence of a girl so he might move on and take them from other girls. And do not forget the size of a newborn child and the size of your flower. The child leaves your womb the way it entered you and it will rip you apart. There will never be a greater pain you will ever feel. You will receive a child in pain and you will give birth to it in pain, that is the punishment women are giving for Eve’s failure. She is the first woman that felt the pain caused by man. I never forget those words they are burnt into my mind and I can not forget them.” Jo was shivering and it scared her to tell Liam this. The last time she dared to tell him something like this he started laughing. It was so long ago in the kitchen of her little flat in Oxford. Liam looked speechless at the drawings. “Liam please say something.” Jo mumbled.


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96 Re: Growing Up on 3rd December 2012, 14:29

Liam stared at her in disbelief for a moment, then at the drawings. “Your mother seriously…she told you that stuff? Really?”

“Yes.”

“And showed you those-I’m sorry-completely deranged drawings?”

“Yes.”

“And you believed her?”

“What was I supposed to do? She was my mother, of course I believed her.”

Liam was quiet for a moment. He had to remind himself that he had been a weird kid for his age with an unusual knowledge of science. So often his mother had said that she wished he could be a little more like a child and not like a little scientist, but that’s what he always was, so when she tried to have the talk with him when he was twelve, he already knew everything there was to know, since he had studied all those biology books when he was in first grade.
“You don’t have to be ashamed of it”, Liam said while he stroked her cheek gently. “Your mother just really knew how to manipulate you when you were little.”

“But I…I just feel so stupid.”

“You’re not stupid. Those drawings are stupid, and all the stuff your mum told you, that is stupid, but not you. Especially this flower crap…” Liam took a deep breath. “I swear to God, if she will ever say something about flowers to the girls-“

“That reminds me…” Jo was about to sit up but then she remembered that she was naked and she wasn’t confident enough yet so she stayed right where she was, next to Liam, the blanket over them. “When it’s time for…you know…for the talk…I…ehm…I have no idea what I’m going to say to our daughters since I wasn’t educated at all, or very wrongly educated. I want them to be educated but-“

“I don’t want them to hear about any of this. Ever. No boys. No intimate and-“

“Liam”, Jo interrupted him gently. “I know the thought of it freaks you out now, but the time will come and we need to talk to them about this before they go out there and do mistakes. They should never be as misinformed as I was.”

He was quiet for a moment. “Fine. You’ll talk to them. I can’t…I can’t talk with my daughters about…boys...and stuff…”

“Well, I would like to have the talk with them later, but like I said, I don’t have any accurate information.”

“If you want…ehm…” He cleared his throat. “If you want, I can explain everything to you, how it works and stuff…I mean, you obviously tried it out, not only tonight but many, many glorious times before…” A cheeky grin appeared on his face. “But if you still don’t really know what’s going on, I’ll explain it to you, everything. And in many, many years, when the girls are about 35, you can have the talk with them.”

Jo giggled. “I love you so much.”

He leaned forward and kissed her. “Jo?”

“Hm?”

“Thank you.”

“For what.”

“For tonight. I seriously haven’t felt that good in ages, you’re incredible.”


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97 Re: Growing Up on 3rd December 2012, 22:09

Jo looked at Liam for a while and Liam was getting a little nervous. “Jo did I say something wrong?”

Jo shook her head. “No you have not.” Jo turned around and climbed on his lap which surprised Liam a lot since they were still naked. Jo grinned when she leaned forward and started kissing him passionately. “You have said exactly what I was hoping for.” Jo’s hands were roaming over Liam’s chest.

“Jo…”

“Shut up.” Jo whispered a little bossy. She looked up and bit her lower lip. “I mean…”

“I told you I like it so don’t stop.” Liam grinned cheeky as Jo continued touching him. Liam leaned back and let his wife give him this huge pleasure. She was shy but still bossy and it was so good to feel how confident she was. How good it felt for her to have sex with him. He knew Jo well it was not her favourite position to be on top since she would not feel the satisfactions she wished she would and normally he would have grabbed her hips and flipped her on her back to make love to her but right now his hands were on her hips and he looked up at his wife seeing her so beautiful boobs. “I love you Jo. I love you so much.” Liam whispered and as so often it took her breath away. She leaned down and kissed him. “I love you too. So insanely much that I don’t know how to express it sometimes. But feeling you inside of me when you say you love me means a lot to me. I love you Liam! And now do you mind and um… you know flipping me over and um you do your think?” Jo looked shy and a little embarrassed at Liam. She couldn’t really believe that she just asked him for round three. Liam grinned widely held her hips tighter so that he could flip her over to give his wife the satisfaction she deserved.
It was early in the morning when Jo dressed in his shirt -and only his shirt- snuggled tight into his chest had fallen asleep. She was looking so peacefully and relaxed. Liam had wrapped his arms around his wife and just looked at her while she was sleeping, so close in his arm. And he thought this would never happen again that they would have sex ever again. He grinned he knew she loved having sex with him and she missed it too she was just insecure. Man he was so glad that they were back on track,


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98 Re: Growing Up on 4th December 2012, 16:06

Needless to say, by the time he had to get up –since it was a working day- he was pretty damn exhausted, but for all the right reasons. The past weeks he was tired or exhausted for two reasons; one was called Jane, the other Jill. Actually, it was more one reason, it was little Miss Jill who was the crier at night (although luckily that had improved a bit) so every time he had to go to his first class in the morning he felt like falling asleep right in front of everybody. Today, however, he went to his class with a wide grin on his face. He was exhausted, but super happy, and when the kids asked him why he was grinning all the time, he just answered he had a really good-night’s sleep. They didn’t need to know all the details…

Ricky had been back in school for two weeks now, and he really liked being back. Sure, the summer holidays had been great but he missed work- much to the dismay of his boyfriend who wished he could just quit work all together and spend every second of the day giving him pleasure. Ricky knew it was perfectly healthy for a couple not to see each other 24/7, so that it was much more special when they spend time together instead of growing tired of each other. Besides, Alfie had hobbies that Ricky couldn’t really get into, like going to the club and golf, so it was good that Alfie had his time for doing those things without him.
It was a Friday evening when Ricky came home and started preparing dinner. Alfie sat in the living room reading after Ricky had banned him from the kitchen since he was too distracting and kept making out with him and didn’t let him get the dinner done.
“Okay, dinner is ready”, Ricky said while he put everything on the table. “You don’t have to be sulky, I have time for you now, but I really needed to get this done.”

“I’m not sulky”, Alfie mumbled, his eyes still fixed on the book.

“Do you care to join me?”

“Wait…I just want to finish the paragraph.”

Ricky sat down at the table and waited for Alfie. He actually liked watching him read. There was something about Alfie when he read books, he looked almost peaceful, no matter if he just read Kafka or any other disturbing author, he always looked incredibly gentle while reading. Not that Ricky ever mentioned that to him, he knew Alfie wouldn’t take that in a good way.
He finally got up and joined him at the table.
“How was work? Is your new class okay?”

“Oh yes, I love teaching.”

“How are the students?”Alfie couldn’t hide the sceptical undertone in his voice. “Do they respect you?” He didn’t need to mention it, it was obvious that he worried some people might trample over Ricky since he looked like someone who was easy to take advantage of.

“Ehm, yes…In fact, they are very nice.”

“Are there any mean kids? I know you only have the first year students, but still, I’m sure there are some big 18-year old douchebags in there.”

Ricky realised where this was going and smiled. “Don’t worry, they are all very nice students and nobody is mean in any way or form.”

“I don’t worry”, Alfie said dryly while cutting some of the vegetables.

“Yeah, I know…” Ricky looked at him but his boyfriend didn’t make any eye contact. “Well, even if there was someone mean, I would never tell you again anyway, not after you almost killed someone.”

Now Alfie finally looked up again. “Don’t be dramatic, it wasn’t that bad.”

“Not that bad? If nobody would have stopped you, Sebastian would have been in a coma, and who knows if he had woken up…”

Alfie shrugged his shoulder. “He had it coming.”

Ricky just stared at him and shook his head quietly. “Anyway, there really isn’t anyone mean, the students are great to work with, especially Dylan.”

“Who’s that?”

“Oh, he’s my most engaged student, to say the least. He’s always the first in, and goes the last. He always has his work done, never misses a class, he’s-“

“A nerd kissing up to his teacher?”, Alfie said sarcastically.

“He’s just a really bright, young man, and it’s nice for us teachers to have students like him. He offers me help all the time, which is really cute.”

“Cute?” Alfie couldn’t hide the scepticism.

Ricky rolled his eyes. “That’s not what I meant. I just really appreciate that he’s so enthusiastic about the subject.”

“You sure it’s the subject?” Alfie continued cutting his food but didn’t eat it. “Sounds a lot to me like he has a crush on you.”

“What? Don’t be ridiculous. I don’t even know if he’s…if he likes men.”

“How does he dress?”

Ricky was quiet for a moment. “Okay, okay, he might be, that would explain why he knew so much about musicals, but-“

“You talked about musicals in your class?”

“No, it was after class, when-“

“He stayed after class to talk about musicals with you?”

“God, Alfie, I feel like I’m in a courtroom, being cross-examined by an angry attorney!” Ricky took a deep breath. “The class had ended and he was the last one in the room, and we happened to talk about this and that, it was nothing, okay? He was just being nice, that’s all.”

“Is he hot?”

“I’m not going to answer that question”, Ricky said dryly.

“Well, he obviously has the hots for you.”

“Oh man…” Ricky sighed. “Just because he is nice doesn’t automatically mean he has a crush on me, that’s just absurd.”

“You know, a student-teacher thing has always been popular. Look what happened to us…”

“That was different. I wasn’t in my first year at university, and besides, the age difference wasn’t that big either. And stop comparing us to Dylan and me, he’s really just a student who knows how to be polite towards the teaching staff.”

“Yeah, I’m sure he is”, Alfie mumbled sarcastically.

“Okay, can we drop this subject now and have a normal dinner?” Ricky looked at his boyfriend with all the seriousness a baby penguin could offer. Which wasn’t much. But still.

“Fine.” Alfie avoided eye contact with him again. Ricky could tell that he wouldn’t let go that easy, but at least he was quiet for now. Although the situation was a bit awkward right now, a tiny smile crossed his lips. Alfie was obviously jealous of this 18-year old boy, and that made him smile, because that was Alfie’s way to show that he cared about his penguin.


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99 Re: Growing Up on 4th December 2012, 22:25

It was Sunday and to Jo’s surprise Liam had been barely up in their flat. So when it was nearly dinner time Jo and her girls went downstairs to daddy’s lab and as suspected the red light outside was burning. Jo knocked and waited until Liam opened the door. He smelled like lab and so hot.

“Hey Handsome we miss you.” Jo smiled at her beloved husband.

“Yes I am nearly finished just five more minutes.” Liam kissed first his daughters and then Jo a little more passionately then his daughters obviously.

“Liam it is Sunday.” Jo said not wanting to sound needy or anything.

“What no it is like um…” Liam was thinking and then he realised it was Sunday. “Shit. No I mean girl don’t listen to me. I am so sorry I didn’t realise that it is Sunday. I was working on something. Um do you wanna come in? That way I can do the first Cupcake test since over the weekend Teddy had to be my test dog.”

“Wait that’s where Teddy was?” Now Jo looked a little worried about her dog.

“Um yes he is fine I fed him.” Liam looked apologetic at his wife.

“He better be okay or he sleep on your side of the bed.” Jo joked at least a little. Liam took Jane and led Jo who was carrying Jill into his lab.

“Liam are you sure they can be in here?”

“Yes I haven’t used any dangerous substance so it is okay just don’t put them down without asking.”

As usual Jo was very carefully while she walked through Liam’s lab to the middle of it, where Teddy greeted her excited. But Jo barely paid attention to Teddy. “Liam what is this?”

Liam beamed at Jo. “That my beautiful wife is an automatic baby swing. I know Jill is a lot better at nights and she only cries once around midnight but when it is a really tough night or even a day when she doesn’t want to nap we can put he into this and turn it on and it will swing. It is safe.” Liam looked at Jo who looked a little worried at the swing. “That’s why I tested it so often.”

“That is so sweet, can we bring it upstairs?”

“Yes of course. Um here take Jane, no wait did you carry both girls down all the stairs?”

“Liam it’s fine I can carry the girls together. You know I’m not pregnant anymore and are allowed to do heavy lifting again.”

“I know that.” Liam looked at Jo for another moment. “It’s just difficult to let go of the habit.”

Jo smiled. “I love it when you do things for me, and I’m so in love with you when you take care of me and the mini J’s. Come on give me Jane and you carry this awesome swing.” Jo took confidently Jane who was starring at everything in the lab very interested. “She will be here with you when she is older. She likes it.”

Liam looked at Jane. “You like it in here princess? This is not a pink castle to play it is a workplace and it can be dangerous.” Jane widely grinned and gurgled excited. When she suddenly made her funny face, her funny poo face. “And now you pooed into you nappy in my lab, okay come on lets go.” Liam grinned, they knew by now that Jane was really uncomfortable every time she soiled her nappy. Jo nodded and went ahead. When they were back in their flat Jo went with the girls in the bathroom to change Jane and since she was already at it Jill as well. While Liam put the swing in Jill’s bedroom.

“Hey daddy can I try it mommy says I’m grumpy because I’ve got a little bit of a nappy rash.” Jo mimic a little girls voice as if Jill would be talking, she put Jane in the bean sac on the floor and handed Jill to Liam.


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100 Re: Growing Up on 5th December 2012, 15:50

“Hey, Gorgeous.” Liam kissed his daughter on the forehead. “What do I hear, you have a rash?”

“It’s not a bad one, but that happens”, Jo explained.

“Is she going to be okay?”

She nodded. “It will go away quickly.”

“Okay, good.” Liam smiled at Jill. “So, you want to check out your new swing?” He put her carefully down and then turned it on. It was really just a very gentle swing, so it wouldn’t be too fast for her but it was similar to the movement he or Jo would do if they were rocking her in their arms. Jill’s eyes widened for a moment, but then they could see that she completely relaxed.
“I think it’s working”, Liam said. “No complaining from her.”

“That’s great.” Jo hugged him. “I’m so glad I’m married to a genius.”

“That’s not even a genius idea, it’s just a swing”, he replied. “So when she cries we can put her in there and for her it will feel like we’re rocking her to sleep.” He bent down to pick up Jane so she wouldn’t feel left out. “I hope you’re not jealous of your sister for having that swing and don’t even think of start crying so you can get one too.”

“Oh, better not”, Jo mumbled while she kissed Jane’s cheek.


It was in the morning of Jo’s birthday, when Liam got up early as always, and went to pick up Jane, who usually woke up around the same the same time he did. Jo and Jill were usually sound asleep at this time.
On normal days, Liam would put Jane in her chair in the kitchen while he prepared a simple breakfast of toast, eggs and tea, so by the time Jo woke up everything was prepared. She wasn’t a morning person at all so she wasn’t bothered doing anything for breakfast, she always needed her time to wake up first. Today, however, since it was not any day but her birthday, he had the cook prepare a breakfast consisting of pancakes, waffles, eggs and bacon. He wasn’t really good in making pancakes, they usually burnt or just tasted weird, so this time he needed help from the cook, but he decorated the table nicely- completely without any help. He also had one single daisy in a little vase, right next to Jo’s plate. Then he had another surprise for her. In order to let her sleep in, he would feed Jane the formula. Usually, Jo had to get up early anyway because Jane was hungry and demanded her breakfast, but now that Liam was giving her the formula, she would still have her breakfast and Jo wouldn’t need to get up early.
“Please be a very good girl and don’t spit it all out”, he said to Jane while he carefully held her in one arm, moving the bottle with the formula closer towards her. “I know you’re used to a different kind of milk bar, but that milk bar is closed this morning because she needs a break now and then, you understand?”
Jane just looked at him with her big, blue eyes.
“It’s Mummy’s birthday, and we want her to have a great day, don’t we?” He carefully placed the bottle to her lips and she hesitated for a moment, but then she started drinking. “Good girl”, he said relieved, hoping she wouldn’t change her mind and cry for her mother any time soon.


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