Timelined around Valentine's Day
<Paige> While Bobby was busy working, Paige had somehow managed to talk Sebastian into helping her shop for her princess' birthday party. They were going with an icy princess theme, which was going to be interesting to shop for with both Ripley and Miriam in tow. Paige had long since passed Ripley off onto Sebastian.
<Paige> She cuddled the sweet infant in her arms as they walked through the store, pausing at a section with tons of Elsa things. "Should we get these plates? Or... two colors of blue?" Why was Bobby not here? This was hard.
<Shaw> Sebastian was growing accustomed to Miriam's fascination with his ties, hair, and nose and heavens forfend when he wore sunglasses, but his daughter was small, weak, and uncoordinated. Ripley, however, was two years ahead of this game. The girl had already relieved him of his sunglasses while standing in the child seat of the cart he'd foolishly offered to push.
<Shaw> Now, Ripley was wearing those sunglasses, upside down. He steadied the girl and looked over at Paige.
<Paige> Paige tapped Ripley's bottom gently with one hand, which usually worked to get her to sit down. "Maybe both... some Elsa ones and some pretty blue ones mixed in. That's what we'll do!" She kissed Miriam's cheek and smiled up at Sebastian.
<Shaw> "Whatever you think best." He looked over the toddler's head at the dizzying variety of childrens party wares. Ripley wavered, but didn't sit, since she was more interested in his hair now.
<Paige> Paige gave Ripley 'the look' before she grabbed a lone package of Elsa plates and several of the light blue ones. "I think this will be so cute!"
<Shaw> Ripley's rear end hit the seat quickly, but unfortunately the girl didn't let go of his hair first and Sebastian hissed with pain, finding himself bending down lest he lose some.
<Paige> Mommy, however, was satisfied. "Thank you, Ripley honey." She snuggled Miriam again as they moved down the aisle to pick up cups and napkins.
<Shaw> Once free of the fingers, Sebastian gave the girl a wan smile and pushed the cart after Paige. "There is certainly more here than I ever imagined. Although, I suppose there is quite the market for spoiling children rotten." He chuckled, looking down at Ripley with a more genuine smile.
<Paige> "Of course it is. And as Uncle Sebastian, you get to enjoy spoiling her, just like I get to spoil Miriam," Paige pointed out, taking a moment to count and divide in her head before she tossed the packages into the cart.
<Shaw> "Of course," he said with another laugh, checking the packages in their cart. "So, how much do you need? We could try another store if you want to get more of the printed plates." Ripley was reaching for a stack of cups in the cart now, and Sebastian tried to distract her to no avail.
<Paige> "We're planning on 40 people... so I think this will be plenty. The printed ones get pricey, and the adults don't mind the blue ones. The kids can have the pretty ones." Paige tossed in some blue forks and spoons next.
<Shaw> He tilted his head at her. "Pricey?"
<Paige> She glanced up at him, truly baffled, then laughed. "Yes... some of us have a budget that we like to stick to." She laughed again. "Ok I think that does it for this part... onto decorations!"
<Shaw> "Well, as you pointed out, it's my responsibility to spoil the child as well." To that end, he spotted a light-up plastic snowflake danging from a plastic necklace. Perfect. Plucking the cups from the toddler's hands, he placed the necklace over her head.
<Paige> That made Paige smile as her heart melted a little. "Yes... yes it is." She started looking over the Frozen decorations. They were so expensive. She frowned a bit.
<Shaw> He noticed the frown. "Pretend money is no object," leaning into her line of sight, he smirked. "Because it isn't."
<Paige> "Except it is though." She had to stick to her budget. If Bobby knew Sebastian had helped in anyway... She could already see his frown.
<Shaw> "No, it isn't," he insisted, reaching over to adjust Miriam's frilly shirt.
<Paige> "Cookie..." she protested, looking up at him.
<Shaw> "Miss Guthrie." He was smirking.
<Paige> Paige wrinkled her nose at him. "Bobby would never let you pay for it," she pointed out.
<Shaw> "He wouldn't let me give your daughter a gift?" His gaze fell to that nose, and feeling playful he wrinkled his own in response.
<Paige> Paige chewed her lip, considering it. "As long as that's your gift... and not anything else... it should be okay."
<Shaw> "Well, then it's settled." His smirk was back, and he had no intention of holding to that. With a nod, he turned his attention to the shelves. "So, what would she like most?"
<Paige> Resigning herself to let Sebastian pay, Paige thought about Ripley instead. She smiled and carefully selected the pieces that she knew would be the best. "A few things from the craft store... and this will be a party to pin on Pinterest!"
<Shaw> "What do you need from the craft store?" He was genuinely curious now, and wondering what the woman had up her sleeve. Spotting what looked like a princess crown, he picked up two and put them in the cart.
<Paige> "I need some glitter tulle, and some ribbon... and a few other things." Her mind was bursting with ideas. "Oh Cookie, this is going to be so pretty!" She kissed on Miriam, giggling.
<Shaw> He noticed her affection for the baby and smiled. "It will be beautiful, my dear."
<Paige> "Did you ever doubt that?" Paige asked, giggling at him again as she picked up a few glittery items for table decorations.
<Shaw> "Of course not," he chuckled, picking up a few other likely looking items and dropping them into the cart.
<Paige> "I've already got her Elsa dress made too." Course, she also had one, but she saved that one for Bobby. Her face flushed at the memory. "Well good. You should all be thankful that it's not lots of pink for this. Does Miriam need a dress for the party? I might have time to make her one."
<Shaw> "I'm sure she'll be quite all right with what she has," he said, knowing Jess would rather dress their daughter. Reaching over, he smoothed down Miriam's fuzzy dark hair. "How goes the wedding plans?"
<Paige> The wedding. Paige forced her brilliant smile onto her face. "It's coming along beautifully. I can't wait!"
<Shaw> "Excellent! I've been expecting a summons for a pink tuxedo fitting," he said, showing Ripley a bag of party favors. The girl seemed impressed. That went into the basket as well.
<Paige> That made Paige giggle some more. "It's very tempting. I'll settle for a pink tie. And flowers. And cummerbund." She giggled some more.
<Shaw> "I draw the line at a pink flower crown." He gave her a raised eyebrow and a critical assessment.
<Paige> Paige gave him a sad pouty face. "But... but just tiny pink flowers..."
<Shaw> Sebastian found himself completely unable to tell if she was being serious or if she'd picked up on his own teasing. He cocked his head, then shook it. "Miriam may wear that."
<Paige> Laughing, Paige nodded. "Okay okay. Miriam wears the crown because she's a perfect princess. Aren't you? Aren't you a perfect little princess!" She nuzzled Miriam lovingly.
<Shaw> "You're quite good with her," he observed, smiling softly.
<Paige> "It'd be really sad if I wasn't, considering what I'm choosing for my specialty," Paige pointed out. "Did I tell you that Bobby and I are trying?"
<Shaw> Wonderful. For Paige, however, he put on a grin. "Yes? Well, I'm very happy for you."
<Paige> Paige carefully hugged him, keeping her firm grip on Miriam. "I'm really excited about it."
<Shaw> "I would imagine. I confess, I'm a little surprised you've started before the wedding, considering." Sebastian returned the hug, mindful of Miriam between them. "But I wish you all the luck."
<Paige> "I was too. That I agreed I mean. I have to admit... she was a huge reason why. Getting to hold her... So cute and precious." She smiled up at him. "Thank you for the well wishes. We're both finally happy and everything is good."
<Shaw> "It's a rare and precious feeling, isn't it?" He was unable to do anything but return the smile.
<Paige> "It really is. I still can't believe I'm going to marry him in a couple of months," she confessed, looking over the party favors for the guests.
<Shaw> "I still can't believe I'm married at all." He gave her back a friendly rub and released her, looking back at the shelf as well. "Do you need any help with that?"
<Paige> "I'm sure I do, Man of Honor," she giggled at him teasingly. "Aren't you supposed to be in charge of the bridal shower and the bachelorette party?"
<Shaw> His lips twitched in a grin. "Are you quite certain you wish for me to organize that?"
<Paige> "Maybe...." she gave him a terrified look. "No strippers!"
<Shaw> Sebastian laughed, the sound loud enough to draw Ripley's attention from the blinking snowflake necklace.
<Paige> She poked him, laughing nervously. "I'm serious! I don't want to... see... that!"
<Shaw> "Well, they don't all take off everything, you realize. There are some that wear... well, I suppose the word for it is collars, and cuffs." Her expression was priceless.
<Paige> Paige gave him another horrified look. "No! No no no! No!"
<Shaw> "No? Is that what you're trying to say, my dear?" Oh, this was too amusing.
<Paige> "That is exactly what I am trying to say," Paige hid her face behind Miriam.
<Shaw> He clucked his tongue. "Pity, that. I'm sure your guests will be most disappointed." Sebastian pretended to think about this. "Well, aside from myself, as I can't say I find the male form terribly interesting."
<Paige> "You mean you don't want me to hire you a male stripper for your birthday this year?" Paige grinned at him.
<Shaw> "My dear Paige, you would not be able to even place the order without blushing to your very roots." Which, truth be told, was adorable, though he'd never say it aloud.
<Paige> "Hey! I am resourceful! I can enlist help. I'm sure I could get someone to make the call for me," she told him confidently.
<Shaw> "Well, that's true enough. I'm certain Drake would leap at the opportunity." He smirked, stroking a finger over Miriam's hair again.
<Paige> "Of course he would," Paige laughed and kissed Miraim's cheek. "She such a cute little sweetheart."
<Shaw> "She is. Thank you." He smiled fondly at his daughter, then straightened, clearing his throat. "I do have a favor to ask, if it isn't too much trouble."
<Paige> "Of course it won't be too much to ask!" Paige poked him gently.
<Shaw> "Well, it would give you a couple of days with Miriam," he said, attempting to sweeten the pot up front.
<Paige> "Baby time?! For a couple of days? Ooooo are you planning some romantic get-away!?"
<Shaw> "No, nothing so exciting, I'm afraid. It's a business trip, in London. Jessica needs to come, as does Shinobi." He considered that. "Not that I would leave Miriam with the boy even if he weren't."
<Paige> "And you don't want to leave her with Hope either," which Paige totally didn't blame him for. "I'll have to talk to Bobby, but I'm sure he'll be okay with it! We both love Miriam. It'll be good practice too. With having two at home."
<Shaw> "Precisely." He smiled. "I know you would keep her safe, and treat her as your own. Luckily, Drake's disdain for me doesn't extend to Miriam."
<Paige> "Of course we would." Paige kissed on Miriam again. "No doubt there, I would hope. I really wish you two could get along better. I mean, he's over at your house often enough. Surely some day he'll come around... right?"
<Shaw> "Mmm. I'm not sure. I believe at this point the needling may be a mutual pastime." He flashed teeth in his predator's grin.
<Paige> She pouted just a little at him. "I was afraid of that." She sighed. Bobby hadn't wanted Sebastian in their wedding after all. "I should start charging you two quarters for being meanies to each other."
<Shaw> Sebastian just reached for his wallet, expression twisting into a playful smirk.
<Paige> "You'll have to just drop a twenty in when he comes over, won't you?" she giggled, though the sad memory of Rachel doing that tugged at her heart.
<Shaw> "That's very possible," he admitted with a chuckle, easing his wallet back into his pocket.
<Paige> "The children at the hospital will be so thankful," she laughed at him, taking his arm as they continued through the store.
<Shaw> "Well, at least it's for a good cause then." He pushed the cart with one hand, realizing he was getting rather good at that. Ripley reached for his wrist and twisted his watch, investigating the strange object. An elderly couple approached down the other side of the aisle, discussing which decorations their grandson would like.
<Paige> "Of course it is. I buy toys for the kids in Peds." Paige gave the couple a smile.
<ElderlyWoman> "Oh I just don't know which one. Oh hello. Do you know what the children like these days? Something about a doctor... and stuffing?"
<Shaw> Sebastian's eyebrow shot up, and he looked at Paige questioningly. "You're the doctor, my dear," he said, amusement barely contained. Ripley chose that moment to babble to him and tug on his watchband.
<Paige> Paige laughed and smiled at them, pointing them to the right section. "You're looking for Doc McStuffins," she told them. "My daughter loves that show."
<ElderlyWoman> "And such a lovely daughter you two have as well. Two of them I see! Such a cute couple. Don't you think they are a cute couple, dear?"
<Shaw> Occupied with Ripley, he took a moment to realize what the woman had said, then shot Paige a glance. Smiling at the woman, he simply nodded. "Thank you."
<Paige> "We're...." Paige was cut off by Sebastian’s reply. She gave him a baffled look, then just smiled at the couple. "Yes, thank you so much."
<Shaw> "Have a good day," he told them, moving the cart along and giving Paige a conspiratorial smile.
<Paige> Paige managed to wait just long enough to be out of earshot before giggling very hard. "Well, dear,."
<Shaw> "Yes, love?" He chuckled quietly, keeping his voice down. "No need to disabuse them of their notion, after all, right? I'd be a fool to deny your charms, or the beauty of this little lady." He ruffled Ripley's blonde hair. "I confess, I had hoped Miriam might take after her mother more."
<Paige> "Blondes are better," Paige teased, tickling Ripley gently. "I'm honored to be your fake wife."
<Shaw> "That they are." Now, if he could just persuade Jessica on that point. "I'm certain Drake would be wonderfully horrified to hear that." He straightened Ripley's necklace, then blinked when the girl raised her hands and asked to be picked up.
<Paige> "I'll be sure to tell him in detail," she assured Sebastian, giggling at first, and then cooing softly at Ripley wanting him.
<Shaw> "Please do." Giving in, Sebastian found himself holding Drake's child again. The two stared each other down for a moment, then Ripley wrapped her arms around his neck and snuggled in.
<Paige> Paige just smiled, overwhelmed by the sweet sight. Even Ripley liked Sebastian! "I will," she assured him, carefully snapping a picture with her phone.
<Shaw> Oh, he was certain to hear of this. "Perhaps I'll just give you a fifty now," he laughed.
<Paige> "I'm okay with that," Paige laughed, putting her phone away and snuggling the baby again. "I'm sure to get an earful."
<Shaw> "Then we're on equal footing," he laughed, and started pushing the cart again. After a few moments, he realized the girl nestled in the crook of his arm was asleep. Well.
<Paige> Paige just smiled at them. "She likes you."
<Shaw> "Well, when Drake disowns you all, I'll build an addition onto the house." Of course, he was already doing that, he supposed.
<Paige> "Awwww but see, I'm cute. He won't disown me! And she's cuter than I am," Paige reasoned. "But good to know we have a place to go!"
<Shaw> "Indeed you are." He gave Paige a smirk. "So, what else is required for a two-year-old's party?"
<Paige> "Well... I do need your help to pick out a cake. And balloons!" Paige steered him toward the register. "And then how about some lunch?"
<Shaw> "Sounds wonderful," he said, spying a package of glittery confetti by the register. Were those snowflakes? With a side glance at Paige, he added them to the cart. "Let's go."
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