This is number three of my story I Adore You, Heart And Soul. My story is now known as a "trilogy". This will be the last story for this series. The next Niles/Daphne story will be completely unrelated to this series. In this particular story, the Cranes are going to take a trip to Manchester. This idea came to me not long after finishing Dance For My Father but I didn't know how to start it, but after much brainstorming and soul searching I have finally figured out what I want to do with it. I really hope you all like it. I will probably be getting a lot of help with all the Manchester slang and customs and such. I hope I do it justice and I hope you enjoy this story. Please be patient with me if the story takes too long to write because sometimes I run into some writer's block. It happens to the best of us. Please feel free to review because all feedback is welcome! Thanks for your friendship and support thus far, I wouldn't be here without all of you. You know who you are. Enjoy!
This story takes place in the spring; several months after my last story. The kids are still in school but there are just a couple of weeks left before summer vacation. Niles and Daphne are decorating the house for David's birthday while the kids are at school; he's turning 17.
Niles is back to 100% again, it's like he was never sick. He's back to work and has taken on more patients. He really loves his work. Ashling is doing well, she hasn't cut herself since she started seeing the psychiatrist that her parents recommended. Her dancing is going very well, she is now in the advanced class. Emily is doing well, she spends most of her time with Jordan. Her parents finally allowed her to get a cell phone but she has very limited coverage on it. That still doesn't stop her from trying to use up her coverage and begging for more. She's definitely becoming a teenager, she has all the classic symptoms; but it's not surprising considering she has gotten her period and will be turning 13 soon. David is of course looking forward to turning 17 and is enjoying spending time with his girlfriend Michelle. Niles and Daphne really like her a lot, she seems to be really good for David.
Daphne got a promotion and is working in a clinic as a physical therapist, she really enjoys it. Her clients really like her and she gets along with her co workers but then that's no surprise because she always seems to get along with everyone. It's no surprise that Niles and Daphne ended up together because they both enjoy helping people and have the same goals in life.
They all miss Martin terribly but they are all dealing with it very well. Despite the fact that Martin is gone, they still see Ronee regularly; she is still very much a part of their lives. Even though she came into the family late, she is still accepted like she had always been there from the beginning.
So my story begins with Niles and Daphne decorating for David's birthday before the kids get home from school They make sure they have all of David's favorite foods ready to go because he's always hungry when he gets home from school. The big surprise they have for him is tickets to a concert with him and his friends. That gives them a chance to be alone for an evening while they send the girls out to a movie. It's been a long time since they've had a night alone together and they are looking forward to it. They love being parents and love the kids, but sometimes they just need some time to themselves; they work hard everyday. They have earned it and they deserve it.
Just as Niles and Daphne put the finishing touches on the decorations, the kids arrive home from school. Niles and Daphne stand in front of the door to keep David from coming all the way into the house. He just stands in front of the door holding his backpack on his shoulder. Emily and Ashling join their parents.
He gives everyone questioning looks before he speaks.
"What's going on? What are you all up to?" he asks.
Daphne approaches her son and puts her arm around him while the others continue to stand in front of the door.
"17 years ago, I gave birth to a beautiful baby boy. He arrived in the most unexpected way, I was in the vet's office because Eddie had swallowed Ronee's wedding ring. While I was waiting for the vet to get the ring back, I went into labor. You arrived a short time later and as I held you in my arms and looked at your little face, I fell in love. You made your father and me very happy that day. It was one of the happiest days of our lives. The look on your father's face when he first saw you was like nothing I had ever seen before. He was so proud he had a son. From that day on you have done nothing but make us proud to be your parents; you have been a wonderful son. We love you, David."
David looks at his mother with tears in his eyes and smiles; he then looks at his father and sees the tears in his eyes and the smile on his face.
"Happy Birthday, David!" they all yell.
Niles, Emily and Ashling all step away from each other as the decorations and food are revealed. David laughs as he sets his backpack on the floor.
"Thank you, everybody. This means so much to me." he says as he approaches the table full of food.
He looks over at his parents who have their arms around each other.
'You have all my favorite foods here! I can't believe this, you are the best parents in the world!"
David approaches his parents and gives them hugs before he heads back over to the table to start eating.
"There are more surprises coming, son." Niles explains.
"Ooh, I can't wait!' David says as he stuffs his mouth with food.
Emily and Ashling go to their rooms to get their gifts for David.
Niles pulls Daphne aside and gives her a spine shattering kiss. When she pulls out of the kiss, she gives Niles a look of total shock.
"What was that for?" she asks.
"That was for marrying me and for giving me three of the most amazing kids in the world. I love you so much Daphne. I think I fall in love with you more each day. You're amazing and beautiful."
Daphne gives Niles a cute, flirty smile as she wraps her arms around his neck.
"I love you, Niles and I should be the one thanking you. You have made me the happiest I have ever been, thank you for everything you have given me. You are the most wonderful, amazing man and I couldn't ask for anything more."
Niles smiles at Daphne as he leans in for another kiss and as the kiss gets more passionate; their daughters walk back into the room and see them.
To be continued...