I was heading up to my room after work about a week after Luc arrived when I saw a light on in Loralee’s old room, the one he’d chosen for himself. It was awfully late for Luc to still be up, so I knocked softly on the door before cracking it open. He was sitting up on the edge of his bed.
“Luc? Is something the matter?”
He looked up at me and shrugged. “I couldn’t sleep. I’m sorry, I’ll go to bed now.” He reached over to turn off the lamp, but I shook my head and went into the room.
“It’s okay. We all have times when we can’t sleep.” I sat down on the edge of the bed. “Would you like me to sing you a song?” On the tip of my tongue was a French song I hadn’t thought of in years. Could I even remember the words?
He smiled a little hesitantly. “Okay.”
Looking down into his striking eyes, I felt something click into place. I drew him into my arms as I had done to Loralee many, many times and hummed softly, the tune stirring memories I’d long since forgotten. The words of Je t’aime, a short French folk song that my grandmother taught me when I was just about Luc’s age, finally started to come to me and I sang quietly to him. I smiled into his hair as I felt his little body start to relax against mine. I hugged him tighter and sang the song a second time before tucking him into bed.
I slipped out of the room and went upstairs where I found Shirley on the couch with a book. She smiled when I came in. “You’re late.”
“I was downstairs with Luc.” I smiled and sat down on the couch and wrapped my arms around her. “He’s our son.” She beamed at me.
I sat on the back porch watching Loralee and Luc play on the jungle gym while Camille played as a space monster. It had been a month since Luc arrived and, as I had assured Camille, he had adjusted and warmed up to all three of us. And Camille had warmed up to him, too.
Last night, Camille and I told Loralee that we were adopting Luc and that he was officially going to be her brother. As I remembered her ecstatic reaction, I couldn’t keep a smile off of my face. They couldn’t possibly get along better if I’d programmed them to. I hoped their newfound friendship would prove to become a deep, lasting family bond.
In just a little while, we were going to tell Luc the good news. Hopefully, he’d be equally as happy about it.
“Alright, guys,” Camille said with a laugh. “You’ve got me! The space monster gives up! You can stay out here a little longer while I get dinner ready, but then you’ve got to come in, okay?” They chimed in with “okay’s” as Camille came up the stairs.
“Aren’t you adorable.” I laughed as she stuck her tongue out at me.
I could hardly contain myself all through dinner. I couldn’t wait to tell Luc the news. Remember, you’re an adult. Patience is one of your virtues. Well, patience was boring.
“Luc,” Camille said after we’d all gathered around in the living room, “we love having you here.”
I cuddled him close and kissed his hair. “It feels like you’ve always been part of our family.”
“You’re going to be my brother!” Loralee blurted.
Luc looked up at me and Camille with wide eyes. “Really?”
I smiled and hugged him tight. “Yes. You’re going to be part of our family forever.”
A/N: Originally, this chapter was part of chapter 33, but it just got so huge I decided to split it up. Welcome to the family, Luc. 🙂