Chloe clicked off the comm and let out a deep, heavy sigh. Moving slower than normal, she walked into the living room draping her arms around Nathan’s neck. He was busy writing reports but this was important. “Hey baby,” she kissed his cheek resting her head on his shoulder.
“That was your cousin. Matthew is coming to dinner along with my parents, your dad, and my brother. That makes ten of us for dinner. Meredith, Delaney, and Thomas wanted to come but they have to go to the other families.” Chloe knew that at least the name Meredith being taken off the guest list was the best gift Nathan could receive to the start of the holiday season. He liked Kevin’s wife and who didn’t love Molly but Meredith was the one family member Nathan always seemed to have the locked jaw posture whenever speaking to her. Meredith’s bouncing from relationship to relationship, which was always true love at the start, and her ability to poor mouth all situations drove him up the wall.
‘Thank you for agreeing to have everyone over. I am so excited to do this. I always wanted a huge dinner in my own home like I had with my family around the table. Perfect turkey…you carving it,” she tickled his side happily. “It is going to be everything I have ever dreamt of and more. It is our first!” They had only just gotten married and the baby was literally on the way this month, but it was their first true married holiday and Chloe was going to make it the best holiday ever.
” I need to go out and get some things today. If we replicate everything we will never hear the end of it. My mom mentioned she could spend the night and help me with the turkey. ” Chloe let the news hang in the air testing the waters. Nathan and her family were a complicated situation. The loved and adored him as much as they were beginning to become annoyed with his constant testing of the Kendrick boundaries. The Kendrick boundary wasn’t exactly a boundary but a sharp cut off like a cliffs edge. When one was allowed to enter the Kendrick clan, one embraced the Kendrick clan’s traditions and rules. Holidays were strictly observed with a schedule and plan. Of all the holidays, Christmas was the my holiday or the highway event. Thanksgiving was a bit more flexible but it was like a dry run.
Chloe let out small grunt as she stood up poking her side. “Your son is using my ribs like a jungle gym,” she laughed. Taking a few deep breaths she began to walk away to get dressed. “Come with me to the store?”
Nathan’s phone began to buzz as Chloe left to get more coffee. Surprisingly or maybe not so surprisingly a name flashed crossed the screen: Jennifer Kendrick
“Hello Nathan,” her voice was warm and friendly. “I just got off the phone with Chloe and I was hoping to talk to you privately.” This request was not really a request but more of a polite declarative statement.
“You know I mind my own business but ten people in your apartment might be a bit tight. I would absolutely love to come over but do you think the stress and confusion will be too much on Chloe? There is so much to do and she is due any day now. We can always do next year after the baby is born if you think it would be best for her to just nap, sit with her feet up, avoid stress…” Jen gave him plenty of excuses. All she needed him to do was pull the cord and turn the reins back over to her.
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