1.45 – Distance

She watched the windows to see if she could see him coming home. She knew they would have to have that talk she had dreaded for a while, but she had to know what it was. It had been years of this now, at first she thought it was just the one case, but she had gotten the idea that it was something more.

She had asked him once, but he had just told her that it was so much to do at work and that he was sorry it kept him away.

It had started increasing as soon as they were toddlers, but when he was home, he was the same guy that had once taken care off her. It was just, he was not home much. It left her with the responsibility of both the little ones, and she had to admit, there were a lot of times where she struggled much more than she would like to admit.

She hated loosing her temper with them, but when one was making a mess, the other screaming at her for something else, and a dog that would really like a walk become an everyday thing she was simply at her wits end.

“Hey there.. “
“Momma angry.”
“Well, what did you do to make mom angry?”
“Nothing.. it was Hank!”
“And you didn’t help?”

“Good, you need to help mommy you know.”
“I am!”

He knew the story was probably different, and as much as he hated being away from them so much, he had to. He had to make sure the mistakes of his past didn’t happen again.

“Now, I’ll go talk to Hank, okay?”
“Okay daddy.”

“I hear rumors you are making mommy mad?”
“I made a mess?”
“Could you try and not to?”
“She has enough to do..”
“You should help.”

He looked at Hank who was staring at him with an expression he wasn’t quite sure how to interpret. Did they notice his absence this much? There was a part of him that wanted to just be there with them, but a much more powerful part forced him to keep them safe, and the only way he could do that, was to be at work, and figure out what was happening.

“I just need you to be home more.”
“I’ll try.”
“Liam.. is there something wrong?”
“Just work… I want you to be safe.”
“Please tell me what you worry so much about.”
“I can’t.. I’m sorry.”

“I hate being away from you, I hope it’s all over soon.”

She hoped so too, but instead, it seemed to just be more and more work he had to do. It was still hard to be angry with him, because when he was home, he was still a good father. Still in the back of her mind, this gnawing worry that he stayed away from them wasn’t work, but because they weren’t his started win over the “Just work” excuse. Could that really be the issue?

It was a rare weekend where he had been home almost all weekend long. He worked from home when they were sleeping, for the shortest while it felt like they were the family she wanted them to be.

“Daddy stay home?”

She noticed the look Liam gave her when Luna made her request, but he gently told her the same as he usually told her. He wanted to be home more, but he had to be at work to make sure nothing bad would happen. She just wanted him to tell her what this bad thing was, and the more times he didn’t tell her, the more she felt it was her and the kids.

She had enough though when he missed out on the twins birthday celebration. Leaving her to once again explain him not being there, and trying her best to make them understand why he wasn’t there. It was also the last straw for her, he was going to answer her what this was all about.

“See, Uno wants to celebrate with you.”
“Nah, Uno want’s cake mom.”

She chuckled seeing how Uno eyed the cake he was sitting next too. Sure, he wasn’t supposed to be up there, but it was just one of the things she didn’t really want to bother with lecturing him for. There was just to many cute moments to it being important enough.

How their talk would go, she really couldn’t say. She knew she had to know what this was all about, and she had to know if her biggest worry was true. Did he not feel like they were his? She still remembered his reaction to her wanting children in the first place.

“You are going to tell me, even if it means we fight..”

Ben had grown into a child, and was with his mother often visiting their house. Much like Liam, Carl also worked much more than Marjorie would like him too. Although it should have helped with Madison’s own worries to hear she wasn’t the only one, she instead saw the similarities between them. On the brighter side of things, Luna had become Ben’s biggest fan instantly, and from what they could see, he didn’t seem to mind his young friend.

“Play with me?”

She had her own way with Ben, she somehow could drag him out of worrying about his own dad being away. Mostly by being silly and funny, but also because she missed her own dad.

Marjorie just watched the two from the window. Hank sitting in the sofa next to her and reading.

“Why are you not out there with them?”
“I like this book more.”
“Hmh.. want me to read it with you?”

He had the type of smile that could make your heart melt, and it made her wonder if maybe she wanted just one more little one herself. But first, she needed to have the same talk with her husband, that she knew Madison was planning to have with hers.

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