Just joining us? You may want to start at the beginning!
“Way ta GO, Hanky-PANKY! You da man! ‘He shoots, he scores!’ Congrats ‘n’ shit! … I mean, stuff.” Dillon’s broad smile lifted his face, and he darted to Hank, pumping the older man’s hand vigorously. Hank laughed heartily, rolling his head back with the guffaws, and patted Dillon’s shoulder.
“Ah, Dillon! You are the salt of the earth, my boy. There’s no guile in you.”
Dillon perked a brow. “Uh … okay, yeah, sure.”
“Oh, Phoebe, that’s wonderful news!” Wendy darted to her and embraced her, and Phoebe laughed and hugged back with warmth and enthusiasm.
“Thanks, sweetie. I’m tellin’ ya, JD, you’d better put a ring on her finger pretty soon or someone’s going to steal her away from you. She’s a prize.”
“I been tellin’ dude that fer months. He’s all dense ‘n’ shi — stuff.”
Wendy blushed. “Yeah, JD. Better do it quick.”
It was JD’s turn to ruddy. He wasn’t sure what to say. “Uh … when did you find out? If you don’t mind my asking.”
“Not at all,” Hank said, beaming. “Just this morning. Phoebe went to the doctor for a prescription for sleep aids. As you can imagine, it’s been hard to … we’ve had a lot on our minds. They ran some routine tests to make sure it would be okay for her to take them, and the results came back this morning. They found she was pregnant. Happy news. We thought we’d come back down and share it with you.” His smile nearly lit the dim room.
“Well, congratulations, certainly,” JD said, and smiled warmly. He was truly happy for them. They were wonderful people and had been through so much recently. It was time for them to have good news.
“Thank you all, really,” Phoebe said. “You know … you’re so sweet, all of you. We’re having a celebratory dinner at the Haven’s Heart tonight — that’s the restaurant I told you and Dillon about earlier, Wendy. The higher-end one. Would you … do you think you could join us?”
“Us??” JD was stunned. “Oh, we couldn’t — this is a time for the two of you to rejoice and be together, we couldn’t intrude …”
“You wouldn’t be intruding, JD,” Hank said, “it would be our pleasure. We’ve only seen you long enough to provide information about this … case, or whatever, but we invited you. You’re our guests. We’d like to share this time with you.”
“And believe me, we will take the time together to rejoice with just the two of us. But we’re going to invite some of the staff, too. People we’re close to. We’ll have a formal celebration with family and friends after the first trimester, but for now … well, we just want to have some folks around us. And you’ve been warm and sweet, very patient. You’ve come all this way.”
“If there’s food, I’m in,” Dillon said, and looked expectantly at JD.
JD glanced helplessly at Wendy. He wasn’t comfortable. This seemed like an intimate thing for the Kiley’s to share, not something strangers should be part of. She smiled hopefully at him.
“I’d be okay with it, babe.”
“Uh … well … I didn’t bring any formal clothes.”
“I don’ own none.”
“I didn’t bring any either.”
“You guys, please,” Phoebe said softly, “it’s not a formal occasion. The restaurant’s in a resort. No one brings formal clothes to Winter Haven. It’s to relax in, not to be stiff and formal. It’s part of the reason so many choose to come here instead of take a cruise — no requirement to have a formal dinner with the captain.”
“Captain o’ what?”
“Dillon, please. Well … I feel awkward about this. It’s such … an intimate thing, for the two of you. But if you want us to come, it would be a honor.” JD shrugged and smiled.