Life in the Kilgannon household had not changed too dramatically since baby Atticus had come home. Amity found she still had time to write almost as much as she used to – she just had to take a few more breaks throughout the day. She purchased a small playpen to keep next to her writing desk so she could work on her next masterpiece and keep an eye on her son all at the same time.
Adam was still as easygoing as ever, and he enjoyed having another male in the house to share his goofiness with, even if he was a tiny man
He and Amity still found time to be romantic and fun…
…Even though their living room had been slightly cramped with the addition of a walker. Amity had insisted on it, as she didn’t want Atticus to fall and get hurt while he was toddling. Adam secretly believed that a skinned knee every now and then was good for a kid, but he knew Amity was prone to worry to excess and he thought it better to just go with it.
They had added on a back porch and fenced in the yard so they’d have a place for Atticus to play during the warm months. Amity and Adam spent most of that summer relaxing on the lounge chairs they’d placed on the porch, watching thunderstorms roll in. Adam would tell stories about his teammates and Amity was surprised by how amusing she found them.
Adam’s sports career had been soaring, but Amity couldn’t help but notice how tired he seemed lately. Even though it had only been a few years, he seemed a decade older than he had the year they got married, when his team won their last championship.
Despite his aching knees, Adam was determined to teach his son to take his first steps.
When his parents weren’t teaching him life’s basic skills, Atticus spent a lot of his time socializing with the strange doll his distance uncle sent to him. The package arrived shortly after Atticus had been born, and contained a short note explaining that the doll’s name was Hesper.
Adam and Amity had been reluctant to keep it – quite honestly it struck them as creepy but they didn’t want to seem ungrateful, so they put the doll into his room and hoped he would pay the toy little to no attention.
They had no such luck. Sometimes when Adam checked on Atticus at night, he could swear the doll had moved from the floor to the crib, or vice-versa. He thought Amity may have moved the doll, but he never actually asked her. He didn’t want her to be worried in the event that she hadn’t actually touched the doll, so both of them lived in a perpetual state of being apprehensive of Hesper and her apparent ability to teleport.
A few weeks after Atticus had mastered walking and talking, Amity found herself becoming familiarly ill.
A short trip to the doctor confirmed her suspicions – she was expecting another child. Amity didn’t know how to feel about it. She felt like she had just enough time for Atticus without sacrificing too much from her career. Adding another child into the mix would further limit Amity’s time to work on her books and articles. She was excited for Atticus to have a brother or sister, but she was also worried. Adam was working even harder these days. He was getting older and Amity felt that this was in an effort to prove himself in his advancing age.
He was excited to learn that they would be expecting another child, but Amity suspected he didn’t listen to all of her concerns about why she was apprehensive to the idea. She tried to find a delicate way to broach the subject of their advancing age and how Adam would be in his 60s by the time the new baby starting high school. However, she noticed an extra spring in his step ever since they'd visited the doctor and she couldn't bring herself to dash his good mood.
It was a hot summer morning when Amity woke up to sharp pains in her abdomen. She knew immediately what was happening. Unfortunately, Adam was at practice and could not drive her to the hospital. She left a message with the team's receptionist and called a taxi immediately after. She tried to hold herself together as she called Rajita to watch Atticus, trying to breathe through the contractions that rattled her body.
Half a day later, Amity and Adam emerged from the hospital with more than they had ever bargained for. Amity delivered Brendan first, and right as she was beginning to feel relieved that the experience was over, the doctor announced that a second baby was coming. Amity panicked, but before she knew it a healthy baby girl was pushed into her arms by the nurse. She had no idea how to react, other than to look at the new baby girl, and then to Adam (who was already holding Brendan and looking at him with wonder written all over his face.) Adam smiled at her and she smiled back.
They emerged from the hospital a few hours later, baby Brendan and Astrid in tow. They were wholly unprepared for the experience of raising twins on top of raising a small toddler, but they knew that they would somehow manage. What choice did they have?