It was an average day in the Gray household. It was the weekend and everyone was off from work, except for Noah who had to perform a few routine checkups later that day. Work was pretty slow because of the case. Few had still trusted him with their lives. Caleb wasn’t making any money because he hadn’t been making any appearances. His manager wasn’t too happy about that. Caleb had seemed all to happy to give up his fame. Daisy had taken off to be a full time mother. Only Noah and Cyrus were pulling in an income, and Cyrus had his own family now to worry about. It was safe to say, soon the Grays wouldn’t be living so comfortably.
“Caleb, I need to ask you for a huge favor,” Noah said suddenly.
“Uh-oh, I’m kind of afraid…” Caleb remarked playfully.
“This is serious man.. Please take care of my wife and child.”
“If anything happens, please take care of my family.”
“Where is this coming from?”
“Just a thought.”
“Listen, nothing is going to happen to you man.”
“Just promise!” Noah snapped, not wanting to explain his situation to his older brother.
Caleb shook his head. “I can’t.”
“Why not?” Noah asked angrily.
“I just can’t, alright!?” Caleb snapped back before getting up to leave the room.
“You’re so damn immature!” Noah shouted at his back. “Take some responsibility for once! It isn’t like I’m letting you mooch off of me!” He added sarcastically.
Overhearing the conversation, Daisy stepped in.
“Damn it Noah, what’s your problem?” She shouted.
“My problem? This isn’t any of your business. I was asking my older brother to do me a favor.”
“Why are you asking Caleb to take care of Leia and Apollo?” She asked suspiciously.
“It doesn’t matter.”
“It does matter! Who was there for you every day while you were in boarding school? Who was the one looking for you when you lost your memory? ME. So don’t try to hide this from me. This is about the case isn’t it?”
“Daisy please…” Noah pleaded.
“What happened Noah!” She snapped. “Tell me, or I can’t help you!”
“The house that was burned down was Corrine’s husband. He’s using my past with Corrine as evidence against me. Frankly, things aren’t looking so good. So in case anything happens, I want to make sure my family is secure.”
“Noah, everything will be fine!”
“I know it will be, because I’m handling it. I need to make sure my family is secure.” He repeated. “But Caleb won’t even do me a favor…”
“He can’t Noah,” Daisy said suddenly. As she told Leia the other day, she had full trust that Noah would never put his family in danger and what he decided to do would be the right choice. Her brothers were both in a state of peril and she had to shed some light on the situation.
“You too? Come on now.”
“Noah, things are complicated…Caleb…well, I don’t know how to say this, but things happened when you lost your memory. He lost someone very important to him. There was this girl he was crazy about, he was ready to propose to her, but she got into a car accident. We didn’t want to tell you Noah because you had just started to get your life together.”
“So he doesn’t think he can protect them…” Noah said to himself. He held his hand to his heart. “I don’t really even know what to do right now. I…I had no idea.”
“That’s why you can’t place such a burden on him. Let him cool off for a bit before you talk to him.”
“Daisy, I…I really didn’t know…” Noah stared at the empty spot where his brother had been sitting. It was because of these people he cared about the most that he had to do what he had planned. Caleb would be out of the loop with his family for awhile…but as long as it kept them safe, he’d sacrifice anything. Noah knew that Caleb, despite his fears, would keep an eye on everyone.
Leia was beginning to grow a little bump. If anyone asked she figured she’d chuck it off to stress eating. Her family had been going through a lot at the time. She had so desperately wanted to go in the water, but decided to just lounge poolside instead. She didn’t want anyone in the house to know she was pregnant before Noah and he didn’t seem like he wanted to talk right now so she figured she’d wait until tonight.
“Mind if I join you?” A voice asked.
“Oh, hey Caleb. Sure!” The two sat silently for awhile until Leia raised a question. “Are you and Noah fighting again?”
“How did you know?”
“Both you and Noah seemed a little off today, so I just figured…”
“Yeah, well. I’m a little ticked off at him for something that he said to me earlier, but I’m not really mad. I’m just a little sensitive to certain things and not everyone knows about them. Noah just hit a nerve today, and I have to apologize to him for being a bit overdramatic, later when he wakes up.”
“Haha…he’s asleep? He has work in a few hours!” Leia grinned.
“Yeah, you’ve got to see this.” He rummaged through his shorts pocket and pulled out his smartphone. “It’s priceless.”
“Oh my gosh, Caleb! You have to send that to me. That’s the most adorable thing I’ve ever seen! My two men, asleep on the couch.” Leia gushed. She couldn’t believe she was married to the sweetest guy in the universe.
“Sure.” He tapped a few buttons and in a matter of seconds the picture was sent. “Uploading it to your blog?”
“Pssh, right. I gave that up years ago. I have more important things that I can be doing with my time.”
“Like lounging poolside?”
“Exactly!” She smiled. “This stressed out mom needs a break.”
“Don’t we all?” He leaned back and shut his eyes. For a second he thought about questioning Leia about Noah’s odd request from earlier but he figured she wouldn’t know anything about it. Noah was planning something dangerous and Caleb didn’t feel so great about it. he had hoped that his gut was just paranoid. He let his mind wander to other things, and he couldn’t help but think of how lucky his brother was to have someone like Leia in his life. Everytime he talked to Leia, Caleb felt like he was seeing her all over again. His heart hurt just thinking about it, but she wasn’t the kind of person you just moved on from. Especially after such a horrific experience….Why did it have to be her that died…and not him?
Noah stretched out his arms carefully as not to wake up Apollo. He would really miss this. It had never occurred to him that protecting meant losing ultimately. He shook his head. Not losing. Protecting. He’d be back with his family in no time. He carefully picked up Apollo and brought him to his crib. As he was about to leave the room he heard a loud cry.
It was baby Tasha. “Uh…what does that crying mean?” He inspected the crib. He had never understood how a mother could tell what their baby wanted. All of their cries sounded the same to him. He picked her up and held her in his arms. She was so precious. It made him realize how much he missed having a baby in the house and how he’d love for Apollo to have a younger sibling. Leia and Noah both wanted a lot of kids. He loved having somebody always there for him in the house and Leia wanted the big family she was never able to have. He hoped one day to give that to her. To them.