Jason frowned at the rows of numbers on his spreadsheet. He rubbed his forehead and tried to concentrate, but he couldn’t shake the feeling that he was being watched. He looked over his shoulder and found a pair of deep brown eyes focused on him. He couldn’t help but smile at his daughter as she studied him, twirling a lock of her curly brown hair around her finger, a lollipop stick dangling from the side of her mouth.
“Hi Daddy,” she said brightly. A waft of artificial grape flavor filled the air.
“Whatcha doing, Daddy?”
“I’m working, Sweetheart.” Jason turned back to his spreadsheet. Which set of specs were the ones for the Johnson account?
Jason felt his impatience growing. He would never get this finished if she didn’t stop interrupting. Without turning, he asked “Yes?”
“When will you be done with your work?”
“When will I be done with my work? When pigs fly,” he replied sarcastically.
“Oh, ok.” Bailey bounded out of the room and up the stairs.
Jason shook his head and tried once more to focus. All was quiet for a while, but then Bailey thundered down the stairs, went out the front door, came back in, and ran back upstairs. A moment later, she repeated the process. When she had done it a third time, Jason’s curiosity got the better of him. He looked up from his laptop. He watched Bailey go outside, pick something up from the ground, and with her arms full, run back up the stairs. Puzzled, he sat gazing out the window, trying to figure out what she was doing. Startled, he saw shapes pass down past the window. Again, a moment later, down came Bailey. She once again opened the door, gathered up the shapes from the ground, and came back in the house. Jason couldn’t tell what she was holding.
“Bailey, come here, please. What do you have there?”
Bailey approached her father, her lower lip wobbling, as if she was biting back tears. “It hasn’t worked yet.”
“What hasn’t, Sweetheart?”
Bailey held out to him the objects she was clutching – two stuffed pigs with construction paper wings held on with rubber bands. “I’ve been trying, but they just keep falling down.”
Gathering his daughter in his arms, he realized what a precious gift he had been given. He shut his laptop. The specs could wait, but his little girl would be grown up before he knew it.
“Maybe they don’t have to fly. Let’s go to the park together and fly a kite instead.”
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