“I’m not tall enough!” Phyllis screamed, attempting to make her voice heard over the shrill alarm.
“Hang on. Hang on.” Billy rushed into the kitchen, their little girl toddling behind him with her hands over her ears.
“It’s loud,” she whined, looking up at Phyllis with big brown eyes. “Make it quiet.”
Phyllis sighed, scooping her up and kissing her cheek. “I know baby, Mommy’s sorry. Daddy’s gonna fix it.”
He reached up, reaching the smoke alarm with ease and flipped the cover. With one quick motion, he popped out the battery and placed it on the counter. He smiled before turning to Alexandra. “You’re never ever supposed to take the batteries out of a smoke detector,” he said seriously, and then leaned in close to her, and whispered, “unless Mommy’s cooking.”
Alexandra giggled and nodded.
“You better go finish that hand turkey or we’re not gonna have any decorations for this yummy dinner,” he smiled.
The little girl looked at him, wide eyed and quickly went running back upstairs to finish her masterpiece.
Phyllis grinned at him as he pulled tucked his thumbs into her belt loops and pulled her closer to him. “You seem mighty confident for a man that just disconnected the smoke detector in preparation for my cooking.”
“I have total faith in your abilities,” Billy grinned, leaning down to kiss her neck. “Besides, you’ve got enough food here to feed a small army. There’s no way anyone could ruin all of it.”
“Thank you,” Billy said politely, taking the bag and bringing it back into the kitchen.
Phyllis stood by the table, surveying the dishes. She looked up as he entered, taking a stance of defiance.
“Dinner is served,” he announced triumphantly, a smile on his face as he held the bag in front of him.
She sighed, “You realize this may be the first Thanksgiving our daughter remembers and she’s gonna have sweet and sour chicken and fried rice.”
“And pot stickers…don’t forget those.” Billy laughed, walking over to her when she glared at him. “Hey, it’s fine…trust me. She’s not gonna care what we eat. She’s not gonna care what the table looks like or if the forks were on the right side. She’s gonna remember us being together and laughing and smiling and spending time together.”
“I hope so.” Phyllis kissed him, the feel of his arms around her instantly making her believe every word he said. “You know I do blame you for this, right?”
“Me?” Billy said, his hands outstretched in innocence, “What are you blaming me for?”
“As I recall, I had everything under control before you entered this kitchen,” she grinned.
“Oh, is that right? That’s why I had to come in here and disconnect the fire alarm,” he laughed.
“It’s very sensitive,” she teased. “One tiny little whiff of smoke and it just goes squawking about…we need to look into one that actually has to sense flames.”
“Yeah,” he laughed, “that sounds safe.”
“Anyway…As I was saying, I had everything under control and then someone came into the kitchen and distracted me.” She stepped closer to him, backing up closer to the counter and easily pushing herself up enough to sit on its edge. “Any idea who that might have been?”
“Not a clue,” he whispered, stepping in closer to her.
“As I recall, I had peeled the potatoes and diced them into identical sized pieces which, might I add, ensures consistency in the cook..”
“Very impressive.” Billy smiled, leaning in and kissing her quickly on the lips.
“I put them on to boil, checked on the turkey which was browning beautifully and took the pie out to cool.”
“It all sounds so perfect.” He loved watching her, the way she spoke, how her eyes would dance as she laughed. He’d swear he could spend the rest of his days doing absolutely nothing but watching her.
“Then what?” He leaned in close to her, the warmth of his body against hers was almost more than she could take and she wrapped her arms around him as she felt him life her slightly. She slowly slid down his body, her feet touching the floor.
“The next thing I knew I had a burnt black block of potatoes and a crispy turkey,” she smiled.
“This sounds like a real tragedy. If I were you, I might never forgive the man that caused such a horrific event.”
Phyllis felt his hands, now warm against the small of her back. “It’s hard to stay angry at him for long. He always pulls you back in. One minute you’re mad as hell and the next you’re all over him again.”
She giggled as she watched the smile grow on his face. “That’s very good to know.”
“And,” she added, still watching him, “He does always fix his mistakes. Even though he ruined the dinner, he got Chinese delivered…in record time.”
Billy nodded. “Smooth and efficient…gotta admire a guy like that.” He pulled her closer to him again, his hands running through her hair.
“Absolutely you do…and I might have forgot to mention, but he’s also really easy on the eyes.”
“You’re gonna make me blush.”
“I’d like to see that,” she whispered. His hands toyed at her shirt buttons again and she lifted her own to cover his. “Ummm, we have a dinner..and a daughter…”
His head dropped. “Alright,” he smiled, leaning in for a quick kiss. “Why don’t I go get our little Picasso while you make sure we’re all set with the food.”
“Sounds like a plan,” she whispered, grabbing another kiss before he walked away. She moved towards the counter, opening the door to get serving utensils when she heard his footsteps back in the room.
“Hey,” he said, looking back at her with a smile, “At least the pie survived.”
Phyllis glanced over at the pumpkin pie, a stunning achievement that sat miraculously unharmed on the counter. “Yeah,” she sighed, “If only we hadn’t used all the whipped cream.”