Emma and Nathan woke extremely early. It was a gray overcast day and they dressed warmly since it was much colder in Maryland. Emma packed carefully unsure how long they would be with her parents. Originally, she’d intended to stay through New Years, but since they were leaving two days earlier, she wasn’t sure whether they’d stay that long. If crunch time came, she could always talk to her boss and take extended time off.
Since Emma always left warm clothes at the cabin, including winter boots, coat, mitts, and hat, she wasn’t overly concerned about being prepared for any eventually regarding weather. She was going to explain the incidents and then allow Nathan to explain his end of things.
Jim drove them to the airport and they boarded his private plane and were well on their way before she breathed a sigh of relief.
“Tell me a bit about your family, Emma. Who has the best sense of humour? Who can be cajoled into fun and whose the more serious of the group?
Emma recited incidents involving all of her siblings and mother and father that painted a picture of down to earth types, given to hilarity, understanding, and compassion. He was looking forward to meeting them all. Her picture also painted how he would approach each individual to explain the situation.
They landed and a car was waiting at the airport to whisk them off to her parents home. The entire family was told they were coming and that it was urgent they meet at the cabin for a serious family meeting.
When they arrived at the cabin, the lights glowed warmly, a fire was roaring in the fireplace and when they entered, the aroma, a mixture of freshly baked muffins, bacon, bread surrounded and enveloped them. Men and women alike were in the kitchen assisting in the preparations for breakfast.
Emma hugged both her father and mother and held on. Her father pulled back and the questioning look in his eyes explained so much. She introduced Nathan to everyone as she picked up the baby and settled her on a hip and bounced her, cooing all the while.
As soon as breakfast was eaten, they arranged seating in the large front room and Emma began explanations. She watched the earnest concern evident on every face. Then she handed the ball to Nathan and he explained his priorities and what he was doing to protect Emma and the entire family.
Her father was the first to speak. “I can’t say I’m not stunned by your revelation, both of you. Speaking personally, I know how to handle a gun, I’ve done my time in the armed forces. I have several unloaded weapons tucked away, should it come to that.”
“Will the family be safe in their homes? Would it be better if we all bunked here?”
“I have men stationed at everyone’s home. You won’t see them, but they are there and very capable.”
“Emma, I knew you were a firecracker! I just knew it!” That burst the bubble and hilarity ensued as each member of the family processed how best to respond and what they felt their next step should be.
In the end, most were due for two-week vacations while others were fortunate enough to work wherever as long as they had an internet connection. It was a matter of gathering up enough clothing and food to stock the cabin for an extended stay.
Nathan assured them all that should they require anything, they only had to mention it and he’d take care of the extras, transportation, food, anything at all.
He’d kept his arm firmly planted around Emma throughout and everyone in attendance noticed the caring glances he directed her way, and how his hand caressed the length of her arm and how Emma leaned toward him. Obviously, they had become closer and Nathan was important to Emma and she to him.
Understanding the scope of his abilities also put their minds at rest. Nathan left to make a call and when he returned, took Emma aside and explained everyone was in place, his cabin was full of as many people as he could pull without interfering in the lives of those with family. Not only were his crew well paid, but they were dedicated, so when he’d called, there’s been no question about heading into the fray.