Dance For My Father

This story is a sequel to I Adore You, Heart and Soul, my first Niles and Daphne story. It takes place 9 years later. I have really good ideas for this story, so I hope it turns out as good as I anticipate. If you haven't read I Adore You, Heart and Soul yet I suggest you do before you read this or it will make absolutely no sense. I hope you like it. Any and all feedback is welcome. Enjoy!

Chapter 1

It is 2020, nine years since Niles and Daphne's last child was born, a daughter they named Ashling. She is now nine years old, her older sister Emily is 12, and her oldest brother David, is now 16. Ashling resembles her mother in every way, she has brown hair and brown eyes, and is tall and thin. She looks older than nine because of her height. She is the only child of Niles and Daphne with dark hair and dark eyes. David and Emily are both blond haired and blue eyed like their father. David is a combination of both his parents in other ways though. David is very smart like his father but has his mother's big heart. He loves sports and animals like his grandpa Martin. David was the first born child for Niles and Daphne and both of them were a bit nervous wondering how he would turn out. Niles thought David would be more like Daphne's brothers due to the fact that he kicked a speaker of his mother's belly when he was still in the womb, he also caused his mother's water to break when his father mentioned an open bar. Daphne thought David would be more like Niles and Frasier, being a little genius before he turned six. But all their worries were for nothing. David turned out like both of his parents; smart, athletic and caring.

Emily is just like Daphne in every way. She has Daphne's stubbornness and moodiness. But she also has a caring heart. The only thing she really shares with her father is her intelligence. She loves to talk and has lots of friends. She loves cheer-leading and shopping. Both Niles and Daphne are proud of the young lady she has become.

Ashling may be the spitting image of her mother and may have picked up her mother's accent slightly but she is like her father in every way. She is obsessed with cleanliness and hates germs. Like her brother and sister before her, she is very intelligent but would rather dance than study. She loves to dance. According to her mother, Ashling came out dancing. Ashling used to kick her so hard, she thought her insides were turning black and blue. Ashling and her father have so much in common, they both like listening to classical music, playing the piano and are both very picky about pretty much the same things. Ashling got her love for dancing from her mother's side of the family, her uncle Billy is a ballroom dancer and her mother dreamed of being a dancer. Daphne is glad her dreams can live on through her youngest daughter. Daphne remembers the time when she was upset about finding out she was pregnant with Ashling. She didn't want another baby at that point in her life, because she wanted to go back to work but now she can't imagine her life without Ashling. She is an amazing little girl, it wouldn't be the same without her.

Niles and Daphne moved out of The Montana and bought a slightly bigger place. There just wasn't enough room at The Montana for three growing children. They wanted the children to have a yard to play in and Daphne wanted the children to make friends. There just wasn't a lot of children in The Montana and most of the families there were too stuck up to even want to make friends with Niles and Daphne. Niles wasn't in that league anymore once he married Daphne, he was more down to earth and accepted change. He realized love was more important than status. He was happy with his new life and family. The children loved the beautiful but modest house they moved to. They all have their own rooms and their own space. Ashling even has part of the basement to use to practice her dancing. They only live a few blocks away from Martin and Ronee. After Eddie died, Martin was devastated but after awhile he and Ronee got a new dog. Martin allowed the kids to name her, and they named her Belle after Belle from Beauty and the Beast. It was mainly Emily's doing but eventually they all accepted it.

It starts with the kids just getting home from school. David had football practice, Emily had cheer-leading practice and Emily has to get ready to go to dance class. David drove him and Emily to pick up Ashling and then drove home.

Once they got home David raided the fridge, Emily went straight to the phone to call her friends even though she just saw them at school, and Ashling goes to her room to change into her leotard for dance class.

When Daphne finally arrives home she sees David sitting on the couch eating and watching a game, and she sees Emily sitting in the corner talking on the phone. She just shakes her head as she goes to the kitchen to put the groceries away, the way David eats, she can't keep food in the house for very long. Once she gets done in the kitchen, she heads to her room to lie down, since the kids are older now, she has been taking on more clients and she is exhausted. Before she can make it to her room, Ashling comes out of her room and gets her mother's attention.

"Mummy, I need a ride. I have dance class tonight."

Daphne looks over at her youngest daughter who is dressed in a pink leotard with gray drawstring pants and white sneakers.

"Oh Ashling dear, I forgot all about it!" Daphne replies as she smacks her forehead.

Ashling puts her hands on her hips and glares at her mother. Daphne knows how important dancing is to her daughter but she was so busy today she completely forgot what day it was.

"Let me go ask your brother and see if he will take you."

Ashling approaches her mother and stops her.

"No mummy, I want you to take me."

"Why don't you want David to take you?"

Ashling shrugs.

"I don't know, I just want you to take me, okay? Please, mummy?"

Daphne looks at her daughter's face and knows she can't say no to those big brown eyes.

"Okay honey, go get your things."

Ashling grins as she turns and runs back to her room. Daphne blows the bangs out of her eyes, a sure sign of her frustration.

Daphne goes back into the living room. David has fallen asleep with the TV blaring so she shuts it off. Emily is still talking on the phone. She can't wait until Niles gets home, he has been staying late at the office more lately.

Ashling comes bounding into the living room carrying her bag on her shoulder.

"Okay mummy, I'm ready, let's go!"

Daphne looks at her daughter and smiles as she grabs her keys off the table. They head out the door and get into the car. Before long they are on their way to parks and recreation building for Ashling's dance class.

What Daphne doesn't know is that something terrible is about to change all their lives. Stay tuned!