“…I hope you can’t hear my stomach growling. I completely skipped breakfast. I know, I know, you’re probably scolding me as we speak…” She laughed, and so did I, because she knew me so well. My job as her wife was to look after not only our children but their mother. If she skipped any meals, I got on her ass about it.
“…just so much to do. I might be late tonight. Please don’t be too mad. I love you. Kiss the babies for me. Bye, love.”
An idea came to me then.
Fully dressed now, my hair still damp, I returned to the kitchen, to the mess my children had made of their meal. There were clumps of oatmeal everywhere — all over them, all over their chairs, all around the chairs. Some even managed to get over to the refrigerator several feet away. That must have taken skill.
“Did any of it get into your mouths?” I asked, shaking my head and sighing at the cleaning I would have to do. “I think you’ve both had enough of that now.” I went to take their bowls away but was met with loud whines of protest.
I laughed, though I really shouldn’t have. It was impossible trying to teach them discipline when I couldn’t keep a straight face. Everything they did fascinated me. I adored them, even when they were little terrors.
“We’re going to see Mama, how does that sound?” I said, offering them a compromise.
The crying ceased instantly.
“I wanna see Mama,” Skye said, and Gabriel parroted her sentiments.
I laughed again. “Then let’s go see Mama.”
The underground parking lot of the Ankh Building was more spacious than the ones at my old buildings, both the Pharaoh and Sekhmet. This was where the company bigwigs were based. It was easy to get lost. Luckily, I’d been here a couple of times before, since Naomi got a promotion and moved buildings, so navigating around wasn’t a problem.
What was a problem was stopping the twins from trying to run off and “explore”. Getting one to stay still while I took the other out of the car seat was pure hell.
“Skye, you can’t go over there, honey, it’s dangerous. A car might come,” I said, as she tried to tug out of my grasp. At this age they didn’t yet know what real danger was, so my warnings fell on deaf ears.
Gabriel, who was holding my left hand, seemed subdued, a rare thing for him. He was usually the one trying to explore. Maybe he was so excited to see his mama that a dark parking lot held little interest for him.
With one of the twins’ backpacks slung over my shoulder (when you become a mother, fancy purses become an impracticality), I eventually managed to lead the kids to the exit, remarkably without any major incidents or tantrums. We rode the elevator to the lobby on the first floor.
One of the receptionists recognized me immediately and smiled warmly as the twins dragged me over.