Could The Day Get Any Better?
The following day Victoria and I still reeled with excitement after opening night as we awoke in bed.
“I can’t believe the amount of money we made last night. I could barely clear that in 4 weeks of casual stays. I mean if we can keep it up, it will be great…”
“It’s the matter of consistency that keeps the business flowing. As the profit continues … the food pays for itself and then some. Weekends are always going to be the best nights, but I was thinking about getting a food critic in to get some more exposure. At the end of the day… St Albans is only a half an hour out of London. And were going to make this place … the place to be. London is such an expensive to stay. And a lot of tourists look for a spot that’s cheaper and really nice. So I think if we can change everything a little and maybe initially offer cheaper rates, the traffic might increase. And word of mouth will always be one of the most powerful things in this business. But I think we need to discuss things beyond this dining room now, since that will run itself…” I announced.
“Do you want to remodel?” Victoria asked.
“Not remodel, just give everything a makeover really. Maybe some new bedding, a coat of paint. Some new carpet…”
“Maybe we should make some more money first, before you put any more money into this Sean… you paid for that whole dining room and kitchen…” she said concerned.
“Darling, I want to do this. I want this to be #2 in Britain. I want this for you so you get to see your fathers hotel flourish. I feel like i’m starting from the ground up here … and I want to see if I can do this too. I don’t mind putting the funds in honey… this is ours for now, let me put some paint on the walls,” I said playfully.
“I feel like I should contribute too. Give me half the costs to owe it back to you…” I lent up on my good arm and looked at her.
“You know ever since you told me you were pregnant… I liked to think that what was yours, was mine too,” I said rubbing her belly. “So whats mine is yours too Vic. I see us being together… not for the time to see you out of debt. But … always. You don’t owe me anything,” I smiled.
“Mixing business with pleasure like this… having my partner, be my partner is just foreign space for me. I’ve never shared, or had anyone provide for me. I’ve always had to dig my way out of every problem,” she said looking glum.
“Not anymore… I mean you do know your man has money right?” I said jiggling my eyebrows.
“Why do you think I’m with you?” Victoria laughed sarcastically.
“Oh!” I scoffed playfully. I lent over her and kissed her gently, “Are you sure it’s not because of this?” I said kissing her neck.
“Nope…” she said as I wriggled my body closer to her.
“Are you sure?” I said planting a kiss on her chest.
“You’re going to injure yourself Sean…” she whispered.
“Please?” I asked. Victoria giggled and swept her leg over my pelvis.
“At least I have some control, you’ll break your bloody hip otherwise…”
“Oh I love it when you talk dirty darling,” I chuckled.
Not long after I got up and took a gentle shower using a plastic stool to sit down while Victoria stood at the sink and looked a little upset.
“Do you think we can raise a baby here Sean?” she asked.
“You were raised here right?”
“Well yeah. But I never really had a house you know? It was kind of a hotel room with mum and dad. I want to be here, but I just want our baby to have something normal.”
“I was raised in boarding school by grumpy old witches… but my younger years I spent in hotels too. I know how your feeling. The swing in the yard, the porch, the fence, setting up a nursery and having your own kitchen and living room where we can all spend it together. It’s normal to want that dynamic…” I said to her.
“I figured I would just live here my whole life without ever wanting that…” she said approaching me with a loofah. “Here turn around…” she said soaping up the sponge.
“Do you want to get a house? I mean we need 6 months before we have to pay your step mother. After that we can spend profits on hiring a general manager so we can have a home away from here…”
“You think?” she asked.
“It’s not going to be the same when the baby comes. The hotel will have to take a back seat. There is going to always be another little person more important than this…”
“You’re totally right… I’m just getting used of all these new staff that we employed last week. The wait staff, kitchen hands and front of house dining manager. It’s just been me Daph and Carl for a long time. Obviously I’ve had cleaning staff every day but, everything is changing. And I’m coming to realise why this place was falling apart. It’s because I didn’t have people to help me keep it together…”
“Good change right?” I asked as she washed my back.
“Every change recently has been good. And you coming back last night just makes me feel even better about everything to come. I’m so happy babe…”
“Is that my pet name?” I asked.
“Do you like it?” she smirked.
“Yeah… I don’t think I’ve been anyone’s babe… this is all new to me too…”
After a struggle with getting dressed I looked forward to going down stairs for brunch to meet up with the Abby and Justin’s girls who arrived in London yesterday afternoon. Even though I didn’t see them because of opening night, I was eager to see how much they had grown. I naturally went for the stairs even with my stick to go down before Victoria ushered me into the lift.
“I will still never get used of this…” I said knocking the stick against the wall.
“You’re determined so it won’t be long…”
“What if I always have it?” I asked.
“A sexy man with a spanking stick? What else could a girl want…?” she giggled.
“You have gone far too long without me darling…” As I came out of the elevator and walked across the lobby… I saw the girls waiting in the doorway of the dining room.
“Uncle Sean!!!” They both shrieked in unison.
“Oy! Careful. Careful…” Abby yelled as they ran towards me to full intent to dive on me.
I arched my arms around each of them at my side and squeezed their shoulders tight.
“I told you we would see each other real soon didn’t I?” I said feeling emotional. I had missed the last year of their life, and it was wonderful to see them.
“Were 6 now…” Aisha said.
“I know. You guys got so big! I’ve missed your little faces…” I turned to Victoria who was barely keeping it together.
“C’mon little ladies let’s have some lunch okay?” I said holding their hands into the dining area. Both Aisha and Everly fought to sit beside me and Victoria sat across the table with Abby and Justin watching on at the excitement the girls felt. I was feeling just as much joy. Victoria was just quiet but had some kind of admiration on her face that I couldn’t explain. I loved feeling like this.
“Oh god, I hate to break up lunch but my water just broke…I’m bloody leaking all over your new carpet Sean…” Abby announced.