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Subject: A Night or Three to Remember : part 8

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Date Posted: 11:26:08 07/22/08 Tue
In reply to: skates 's message, "A Night or Three to Remember : part 1" on 20:00:35 07/17/08 Thu

part 8

25 Dec 2004
The MacKenzie/Rabb Estate

During the night Harm and Sarah moved all the presents out of the guestroom and put them under the tree. Harm was surprise at how many presents there were under the tree. The pile had to be at least two to three feet high all around the tree.

Trish had wanted to go Christmas shopping for the girls, but Sarah persuaded her not to worry about getting any presents. She showed Trish the pile of presents. Her being here with the girls was the best present she could give the girls.

Trish had to agree. Besides getting the opportunity to spend Christmas with Harm, finding out that she had four girls for grandchildren was by far and away the best gift she could ever have gotten. It must be the same for the girls too.

Finding out that you have people who love you just because, was a wonderful feeling. She felt so bless that her dreams had come true. She hoped that Harm and Sarah would get married, that they would always welcome her to be a part of their family.

She had friends who in the beginning were very close to their extended family, but somehow found themselves on the outside looking in when their extended family broke apart. She hoped that would never happen to Harm and Sarah.

Sarah gave Trish a list of the girl’s birthdays. All their birthdays were within the next few months. She could make up for it then. Trish had received a voice mail from Frank telling her when his plane was arriving at Reagan International. He would have a limo take him to the house.

It was early Christmas morning. Harm was dead asleep in bed. Sarah was sleeping with her head and chest on Harm’s chest. They had gone to bed late and had hoped to sleep in until 0800 hours. But that wasn’t going to happen.

Tory and Ronnie were the first ones to awake at 0630 hours. They occupied each other for awhile until Lizzie woke up. She wanted her mother. Tory tried to convince her to wait. They could play a game until their mother woke up, but Lizzie wasn’t interested.

“I want mommy!” she declared obstinately.

“Mommy and Daddy are sleeping Lizzie. We shouldn’t wake them. Let’s play a game.” Tory told her.

“I’m hungry. I want Mommy to make me breakfast.” she whined.

“Can’t you wait? You know Mommy like to sleep late on Saturday mornings.” Tory tried to reason with her.

“I’m hungry, I want Mommy.” Lizzie wailed as she took off for her mother’s bedroom.

She opened the door and went inside with Tory and Ronnie right behind. It was nearly 0715 hours now. They wanted to go down stairs and open their presents. It was Christmas, a time to be happy.

They let Lizzie climb up onto the bed first before they did, Tory and Ronnie, climb onto the bed too. Even though Sarah was sleeping longer and more soundly with Harm in bed with her the past week, she still could sense the girls on the bed.

Harm on the other hand was dead to the world. He was use to sleeping on a carrier. He learned a long time ago to sleep through loud noises and ground shaking tomcats taking off and landing.

Nothing was going to wake him up, especially when he held his Sarah in his arms. Sarah however knew that Lizzie would come to her as soon as she woke up. She rolled over off Harm and waited for her.

She nodded the go ahead to Tory and Ronnie to go ahead and wake up Harm. Two steps later they landed on his chest and abdomen. Harm groaned in agony as they landed in the wrong spot. He reached out and grabbed them both taking them into his arms and gave them bear hugs.

At first they enjoyed the hug from Harm, but it wasn’t very long before they were squirming to get loose. Harm held on and chuckled at them and their efforts. He was giving them raspberry kisses.

“I got you now! You can’t escape the long arms of the Supreme Being. Ha, ha, ha.” he teased.

“Let go Daddy!” they both squealed and squirmed.

When Harm didn’t let go they both pinched the back of his arms causing him to yell ouch and letting go of them. He needed to rub his arms, but didn’t know which one to rub first. They both hurt.

“Where did you learn that little trick?” he asked the girls who had backed off a little and were giggling at him.

“Harm, you don’t think you’re the first one who tried to over hug them do you. It’s a defense mechanism all small children learn to get away from someone bigger.” Sarah smiled as she explained a little known secret.

“Is your other sister awake Tory?” Sarah asked. If she was they would go downstairs.

“Yes Mom, she’s in her room reading a book. Can we go down stairs and open the presents Santa Claus brought us?” she chirped as both she and her sisters jumped up and down on the bed in anticipation.

“Yes, sweetie, go tell your sister we’re ready. Harm, do you want to see if your mother is awake?” Sarah asked.

Ten minutes later everyone was downstairs sitting around the tree. Trish was sitting there wondering why they were up so early. It wasn’t even 0500 hours La Jolla time. Why couldn’t they have slept in a couple hours longer.

Fortunately for her both Harm and Sarah loved to drink coffee in the morning. Sarah had brewed marine strength coffee for them. Harm almost choked on the strength of the coffee. Trish welcomed it.

The younger girls were chirping excitedly as they looked at all the presents. It was hard to comprehend the largess of the gifts. The night before Sarah had talked to Chloe about only handing out the presents given to them by Mom and Dad.

With AJ and Sydney coming over for Christmas dinner, Sarah wanted them to wait to open their present until they were there. It was another way to spread out the day and control the chaos.

Harm gave Trish the camera to take pictures with. Between them they figured to get a lifetime of memories. The girls’ ages were spread far enough apart to give them an idea of how the other Christmases might have been.

Ronnie’s reactions would be similar to Tory at the same age. They were so similar. And Lizzie would give them the feel of how it was like for Tory and Ronnie at her age.

Harm knew it wasn’t perfect and that it could never make up for all the lost time, but it was better than nothing. He had to make the best of what he had now. There was still plenty of time to enjoy his girls.

Several hours later there was a knock at the door. Harm went to the door and opened it. It was Frank. He looked very tired. Harm welcomed him in and led him to the family room where everyone was gathered.

“Hi Frank, It’s good to see you. Boy you look tired.” Harm smiled.

He hoped someday to be like him. Frank would anything for his mother. He wanted to be the same way for Sarah and the girls.

“Hello Harm, I didn’t exactly get a lot of sleep last night. Your mother left me a message that I needed to get my six back here today or don’t come home. What are you doing here Harm?” he responded tiredly.

All Frank wanted to do was find a place to sit down and zonk out for a few hours. Something he had become very proficient at over the years. He wasn’t ready for what was to come.

“I live here Frank.” Harm replied smiling. He guess his mother hadn’t told Frank about anything yet, especially the girls.

“Since when have you lived here Harm. You’ve been living on an aircraft carrier the last five years. Five years I’ve had to listen to your mother complaining about you not visiting her, writing to her, or even e-mailing her.

Though I have to admit this is an impressive house. So tell me Harm, what’s up? I know you can’t be living here by yourself. This house is much too big for one person.” he demanded.

“Come into the other room Frank, it will come apparent to you.” Harm smiled as he led Frank into the other room for the biggest surprise of his life.

They went into the family room where the Christmas tree was. It still had presents underneath. Sarah had only allowed the girls to open half of the presents. She wanted some to be open later when AJ, Sidney, Bud, Sturgis, and Carolyn arrived for dinner.

Frank saw Trish sitting on the couch with several young girls. One was on each side of her while the third was cuddling in her lap. It looked like to him she was reading a book to them.

“Hi Trish, what do you have here?” he asked her with a smile.

Trish looked up and smiled. “These lovely young ladies are our grandchildren Frank. This is Victoria on the right, Veronica is on the left, and Elizabeth is in my lap. Girls, this is your grandfather Frank.”

“My, my, three peas in a pod, you all are very pretty little girls.” he smiled.

One by one they all went over to him and gave him a big hug.

“You all must look like your mom.” Frank smiled.

“Mom said it’s because of her superior marine genes.” Tory replied causing them to laugh.

“Where is your mother Tory?” Harm asked.

“She’s in the kitchen getting dinner started.” she replied.

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A Night or Three to Remember : part 9skates13:46:45 07/23/08 Wed

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