A polite cough had them jerking apart; Al’s face flushed seeing Carol standing there looking at them and smiling. ‘Oh don’t mind me honey, I just thought I’d warn you everyone’s up and running.’
‘Even Rich and Dave?’ Al grabbed hold of Tico’s wandering hand, and tried to act normally.
‘Yup even those two, Hector’s in with Jon and Romeo at the minute.’
Al hopped off Tico’s knee and headed towards the door, ‘I’d better get started on brunch.’
‘I’ll help and I’ve told Richie to get his butt in gear too. All hands to the wheel when cooking for eighteen people.’ With that Richie strolled down the stairs, Hector in tow, looking like a sleepy teddy, dressed in blue t-shirt, jeans, and bare foot and unshaven. He grabbed the apron Carol threw at him and started to get out the sausages and bacon from the fridge. When he put them down Al thrust a mug of coffee at him, he grinned and downed it, nearly taking out the back of his throat; then getting another to keep him going.
Hector went to his pappy and kissed him good morning, then to Carol, and lastly to Al whom he nearly climbed up to kiss and hug, asking if he could help. She told him he could help his pappy set the table up, the food would be put on the counter tops so they could serve themselves, but the orange juice and condiments would be put on the table.
She also asked him and Tico to go and wake Jesse and Colton up, otherwise they’d get no breakfast. As Tico walked his son to the studio door the front door bell rang, he opened it and there stood Obie and Tony. ‘Where’s Mike?’
‘No idea, probably still in bed.’ And Obie winked at him.
‘Your mom, Rich and Ally are just starting to cook, oh sorry Lizzie darlin, didn’t see you there, come on in and join the mad house.’ Then he headed downstairs with Hec who jumped all over the two boys to wake them up.
By the time they got back upstairs, other adults and various children had joined the fray. Tico grinned at Ally right in the middle of it, directing things like a drill sergeant; she’d never looked lovelier, the smell was drool worthy, nothing like breakfast cooking!
‘Pappy we need to set the table!’ Hector reminded him, and they set about the task, laughing and joking with everyone who also pitched in. None of the kids were dressed yet so it looked like someone was having a mass slumber party!
Half an hour later, the counters were groaning under piles of toast, sausages, scramble eggs, bacon, baked beans, Al had told them it was an English breakfast and that’s what they ate, hash browns, fried bread, mushrooms, and other bits and pieces. The men thought they’d died and gone to heaven, and then they thought about all that cholesterol, they all mentally said ‘fuck it’ and dug in with the kids.
Liz fixed a plate for Jon and one for her, and headed upstairs. Carol stood watching her and grinning. Liz had Jon literally eating out of her hand.