Kate read between the lines. Donald didn’t want to upset Margo, but he expected trouble in some form from his wife and son. At the very least, he knew they wouldn’t go away quietly.
“I promise, Kate, I’ll take care of everything. I won’t let anything happen to Margo.”
“I hold you to that promise.”
He smiled, released her sister, and came to stand in front of Kate. He put his hand on Alex’s back and the other on her shoulder. “I know you will. Margo, Alex, and you are my family. This will all blow over and we’ll move on together and watch Alex grow into a wonderful and loved man. He is the gift we share. Nothing will make me happier than to have this business behind us. I want to spend the rest of my life making Margo happy and raise our son. All of us together and happy.”
Kate’s inner pessimist shouted, “Yeah, right.” But holding Alex in her arms, seeing his happy face and the innocence in his eyes sparked the belief that maybe the life Donald described wasn’t out of reach. They needed to work for it, and that included taking care of old business.
“Call me if anything more happens. Keep me in the loop.”
“We will. I promise,” Donald agreed.
Her sister and Donald walked her out to the car. Margo took Alex, hugged him close, and put him in the car seat in the back. Margo settled Alex, then kissed him on the head. “Be good for Auntie. I’ll miss you, sweetheart. I love you.”
“I promise, I’ll take good care of him.”
“I know you will. It’s just I’ve never been away from him since he came home.”
“Go with her,” Donald suggested at the last minute.
“No. I’m staying with you and seeing you through this ordeal.”
“That’s just it, it is an ordeal. I’ll handle it. It’s not for you to work out, but for me to do.”
“We’re a couple. Partners. We do things together. The fun things and the tedious.”
Donald hugged Margo close. “I much prefer the fun we have together.”
“Then Kate will take Alex, and you and I will have some fun.” The sparkle in her sister’s eyes when she said those words made Kate blush. These two were good together. Margo’s fun nature balanced Donald’s seriousness.
Donald set her sister aside, leaned in and kissed Alex goodbye, closed the door, and opened Kate’s door for her. Before Kate took her seat, he reached for her hand and held it tight. “Thank you for doing this.” He pressed hard on the key he’d placed in her hand and whispered, “Just in case.”