Chapter Six




I woke up to the usual tickling sensations on my feet. This time Davey and TJ were both under the covers. Davey was showing him how to tickle my feet and coaxing TJ to try it. They were both giggling every time my feet twitched. When I fully woke up, I ran one finger along each of their feet. Dave knew what was coming but TJ jumped and squealed then giggled. I grabbed Davey's feet and tickled them until they were both out from under the blankets. TJ was out first and he was giggling at Davey's reactions. Once Davey was out, I stopped. Davey laid there panting but TJ was still giggling. I leaned over and grabbed one of TJ's ankles. I said "Your turn." He squealed again and tried to get away. When I started tickling both his feet, he just collapsed on the bed, started rolling from side to side and laughing as hard as he could. I only tickled him for a few seconds. Both were now lying on the bed panting.

"Good Morning, guys. Are we having fun?" They both got up and gave me a group hug.

I told them to jump in the shower while I made breakfast. They bounced off and headed into the bathroom. TJ turned around and came back to me. He wrapped his arms around my waist.

"Thank you for sleeping with me and keeping me safe." I leaned down and looked him in the eyes.

"Thank you for being such a special little boy." I gave him another hug, then a tickle poke on the belly and told him to get in the shower with Davey.

I threw on a t-shirt and shorts and went downstairs to start breakfast.

While I was making breakfast I heard a lot of giggling coming from the shower so I figured Davey was giving TJ a good tickle wash.

The boys came down wearing just towels around their waists. Davey walked up to me, raised his arms in the air and said, "Inspection Time, Daddy." TJ stood beside him with a very confused look on his face. I did the usual tickle inspection that Davey liked after a shower. I pulled up a chair. Davey sat down and I inspected is feet. He wiggled, bounced up and down on the chair and laughed. TJ enjoyed watching Davey and I play together. He was giggling.

After our inspection was finished, Davey got up and said it was TJ's turn and gently pushed him toward me. He curled up trying to protect all his ticklish spots. I hugged TJ. I told Davey I had to finish making breakfast. TJ looked a bit sad. I put my finger under his chin and lifted up his face. I asked him,

"Would you like Davey to do the inspection on you?" His face lit up. He went straight to Davey and lifted his arms just as he had seen Davey do in front of me. I told Davey to do the inspection over by the couch. It was great to see TJ was giggling and laughing.

I set their glasses of juice and milk on the table and the last French toast on the serving plate. I put one piece of toast on each of their plates and set the rest in the center of the table. I called the boys over to the table.

"Did you give TJ your famous tickle wash in the shower?"

"Ya, it was fun. Then he tickle washed me."

"Ya, Davey is just as ticklish as me." They both looked at each other and giggled.

TJ had a smile all the way through breakfast. The boys kept giggling and laughing as they ate. If you didn't know it, you would think they were brothers. When the boys were finished, I told them to go upstairs to get dressed. I gathered up the dishes and began to wash them. I just got started when there was a knock at the door.

"Mr. Smith?"


"I'm John Dorion and this is my wife Betty. We own the resort."

"Hi, glad to meet both of you." I shook their hands and welcomed them in. They sat on the couch and I sat on the chair.

"Steve, the bartender filled us in on what happened last night," John said.

"How's the boy?" his wife asked.

"He's doing okay He and my son are getting along great. "

"The police phoned this morning just to check and make sure you guys were still here. They said the officers would be here around noon to do a follow-up meeting."

I looked up and saw the boys peaking down at the top of the stairs.

"Davey, TJ, are you boys done changing?"

"Yes," they said together at the same time.

"Come on down and meet Mr. and Mrs. Dorion."

They came bouncing down the stairs. Davey walked right up to them and shook there hands. TJ was shy and nervous. He stood beside me. Davey had loaned TJ some of his clean clothes to put on.

"Hi TJ," Betty said with a sweet grandmotherly smile. She stuck her had out. I gently nudged him forward to shake her hand. John stuck his hand out and TJ shook it too, then he stepped back beside me.

Davey plopped himself between the couple. As usual, he took charge and led the conversation.

"You have a great place here."

"Thank you, Davey. Have you been in the pool yet?" Betty asked.

"Not yet, we went up to the hot springs when we arrived and then we again yesterday."

"I guess our pool can't compete with the hot springs." John teased.

"Oh no, I didn't mean it like that. I'm really looking forward to spending time in your pool. Do you have any pool toys we could play with?"

"Yes, we do. We have balls, rings, inflatable animals, things you can dive down to the bottom to get and even two of those pool basketball net thingies," Betty said.

"Cool. You have way more toys for kids. They only had a couple of balls at the hot springs."

"Maybe our pool can compete." John chuckled.

"Why don't you take TJ to the camper and show him your remote control truck?"

"Okay, come on TJ."

TJ grabbed my hand. "It's Okay little buddy."

"I'm scared to go outside without you." He whispered into my ear. I looked at Davey.

"I got a great idea" he ran upstairs. A few seconds later, he came bouncing down.

"Here TJ." He handed him his walkie-talkie and handed me one.

"What's this for?" TJ asked a bit confused.

"Now, Daddy is still with you; in a way. Here let me show you." Davey went outside and started talking on the walkie-talkie. I showed TJ how to push the button to talk back. He thought it was a good idea. Davey can back in. He handed TJ the walkie-talkie and took his other hand. I gave TJ a quick hug and told him it would be okay. On the way, TJ kept asking over the walkie-talkie if I could hear him.

"The poor dear, how could someone do such a horrible thing to a sweet little boy?" Betty said.

"We had no idea when they first came here," John said.

"Don't blame yourselves. I didn't pick up on it at first. I just thought he was shy."

"Where is his mother?"

"She's in Prince Rupert. I'm guessing she's on her way this morning."

"Let's hope so."

"Can offer you some coffee or make you some tea?"

"No thanks. We just wanted to come by and check on the boy."

We got up and I walked them to the door. We stood on the veranda and saw TJ driving the remote truck back toward us. Davey was putting things in front of the truck for it to run over. They both were smiling and giggling. I shook Mr. and Mr. Dorion hands and thanked them for stopping by. They told me to let them know if there was anything, anything at all, they could do to help. They left and went back to the main lodge. I sat on the rail and watched Davey and TJ play with the truck.

I went back in the cabin to finish the breakfast dishes. Then, I showered and changed. When I can downstairs, Davey was showing TJ how to put the pictures from his camera to his laptop. I sat on the couch. When they finished, TJ came and sat beside me. I put my arm around his shoulder. Davey took a picture of us and put it on his computer.

There was a knock at the door and Davey went to answer it.

"Hi, you must be Davey. I'm Officer Judy this is my partner Officer Ted. Is your father around?"

When they walked in, TJ got scared again. He pressed closer to me. I didn't bother to try and get up.

"Here are the papers you gave me last night Mr. Smith."


"Hi TJ, how are you feeling today?"

"Are you going to take me away?" TJ whimpered.

She bent down on one knee and put her hand on his leg.

"No, I'm not here to take you away."

He relaxed a bit.

"I have some good news, Billy. I talked with your mommy last night." He perked right up and sat on the edge of the couch.

"Is she okay? Has something happened to her?"

"No Sweetie, she's fine. She was so happy that Davey and his daddy found you and called us."

"Where is she?"

"That's where gets a bit complicated, Sweetie. Do you remember the highway that takes you to Prince Rupert?"


"Well, a whole bunch of rocks came down from the mountains and blocked the road. Your mommy can't get by them until tomorrow morning." He looked so disappointed.

"That means you can stay with us until tomorrow!" Davey jumped in all excited.

"I was about to ask your daddy if it was Okay with him."

Both boys turned to me with their puppy dog eyes.

"You didn't have to ask, I was about to offer."

"YAY!" Both boys piled on me.

"Okay, you guys go get washed up for lunch."

I walked the officers out.

"Here's a phone number where his mother is staying in Prince Rupert. She would like you to call her as soon as possible. We told her that Billy was safe but she wants to hear Billy's voice."

"I'll make the call right now."

"We will call tomorrow and let you know when the highway is open."

"Thanks, Judy. What about his father?"

"He's been charged with assault on the mother, child abuse, kidnapping, breaking a court order and assault on a police officer. He hit Ted as we were bringing him into the Edmonton jail."

"I guess he won't be getting out on bail any time soon?"

"No. That reminds me. The prosecutor would like to know how he could get a hold of you after you leave here."

"Well, I have no definite plans."

"Okay, we will take it day by day. The main thing right now is to get Billy back with his mother."

"Yes, we can figure out the rest as we go along."

"Okay. Talk to you tomorrow."

Davey and TJ came bouncing down the stairs when I came inside. I sat TJ down and told him that he doesn't have to be scared that his father will come and take him away. I didn't go into all the details. I just told him that his father was in jail way over in Edmonton. I asked the boys to go and get Davey's remote-controlled speedboat in the camper so we could use it in the pool after lunch. Davey looked at me kind of confused since we had to pass the camper on the way to the pool. I just gave him a look and a wink. He didn't understand but went took TJ anyway. I told them to "Hurry" back for lunch and gave Davey another wink.

I pulled the phone number out of my pocket and made the call.

"Hello," A female voice said.

"Hi, my name is Doug Smith, is there a Diane Jones there?"

"Oh my God, DIANE COME QUICK it is the gentleman that found Billy!"

"Hello, Mr. Smith. How's Billy? Is he Okay? Is he hurt? Can I speak to him?"

"He will be back in just a minute, I sent him on a quick errand with my Son, and I wanted to make sure you were home so he wouldn't be disappointed when I called."

"Thank you so much for finding him. How did you find him?"

"Well, he sort of found us. He told my son about what happened and together they told me."

"The officers told me that my ex is being charged with child abuse. Is Billy hurt badly?"

"No, no he's Okay His lower back is bruised and a bit tender, but it is not serious. We never had to take him to the hospital."

"Thank you so much, Mr. Smith, for keeping Billy safe."

"Please, call me Doug. How are you doing Diane?"

"When my ex-knocked me unconscious. My neighbour called 911. When I woke up, I was in the hospital."

Just then, the boys ran back in. I waved TJ over.

"Someone wants to talk to you." I handed him the phone.

"MOMMY! Are you Okay? No, I'm fine, how are you?"

Davey and I walked outside to give TJ some privacy. We sat on the bench under the window. That way TJ would still be able to see us.

"Daddy, how did you know how to call TJ's mommy?"

"Officer Judy handed me the phone number of her way out."

"Why did we have to go to the camper?"

"I wanted to make sure his mother was there before I put him on the phone."

"You're the BEST DADDY!" He threw his arms around my neck.

Mr. and Mrs. Dorion came walking by.

"Hi Again," Davey yelled.

"Hi, Davey, Hi Doug, where is TJ?"

"Oh, Great News, he's inside talking with his mommy. There was a bunch of rocks fell on a highway so that's why his mommy couldn't make it here today. She's coming tomorrow as soon as they get the rocks off of the highway." Davey bubbled

"That's wonderful. He must be so happy." Betty said.

Just then, TJ came running out. "My mommy wants to talk to you again."

I went inside and picked up the phone.

"Hi, Diane."

"Thank you so much for taking such good care of Billy."

"He's a very special little boy. It was a pleasure to get to know him."

"He told me all about your trip to the hot springs and everything else. You'll have to fill me in on the details tomorrow."

"When you meet my son, Davey, I'm sure he will tell you about our adventures in great details."

"Billy really loves Davey. It sounds like they are running you ragged."

"No, not at all, I'm really enjoying every minute. Now, I want you to relax and not worry about Billy. I'll continue to take good care of him for you."

"Thank you so much, Doug, you don't know how relieved I am to know Billy is safe. They say the highway should be open tomorrow. An officer will bring me there as soon as the highway is clear."

"We will be waiting. Here's your son."

I went back out to the veranda.

"How's his mommy?"

"Very good now that she knows TJ is safe."

"Doug, would you and the boys join us in the main lodge for lunch?"

"Sure, that would be nice"

"Good, let's say in an hour?"

"That's fine with me."

They walked back down the lane. TJ came out. He pulled me down to his level, wrapped his arms around my neck and gave me a very long hug.

"Thank you so much for calling my mommy."

"You're very welcome, TJ."

He looked down and the ground. I could tell he wanted to tell us something.

"You want something, TJ?" He nodded.

"Well, we are all friends here, you can ask us anything."

"Could you guys start calling my Billy like my mommy does? My dad called me TJ and I don't want to be called that anymore."

"Sure, Billy," I said as I gave him a hug.

"Thanks, when are we having lunch?"

Mr. and Mrs. Dorion invited us to have lunch with them in the main lodge. Is that Okay with you?

"Ya, they were nice like grandparents."

"Okay, we have about 45 minutes before we have to head down to the lodge. What do you guys want to do?"

"We could go to the games room," Davey suggested and Billy agreed.

"Okay, let's go!"

Davey grabbed his camera. I stopped at the bottom step of the veranda and asked Billy if he wanted a piggyback ride. He looked a Davey. He told Billy to go for it. Billy jumped on my back and we started walking down the lane. Davey ran ahead to take a picture of Billy and I. I bounced Billy up and down and he giggled non stop. I told Davey to put his wallet away because it was my treat this time. I put in $5.00 into the changer and gave each of them 6 quarters. I figured that would run out by the time we had to meet the Dorions.

We had a great time with the Dorions. Davey shared his favourite story with them about how I became his Daddy. Billy really perked up since talking with his mommy. He told us everything they said to each other. Davey then told the couple about the fun we had in the hot springs. Neither of the boys talked Billy's father or about the events of last night. Davey asked if it was all right if he ran his remote-controlled boat in their pool. They said it was all right but not if the pool was crowded. The boys thanked the couple for lunch and gave each of them a hug.

Billy asked Davey if he wanted the piggyback ride on the way back to the cabin. Davey told Billy to go ahead. I leaned down and Billy got on my back. I did the same bouncing up and down and Billy giggled all the way back up the lane.

When we came inside the cabin, Davey saw his boat.

"Daddy, can we go to the pool now and play with my boat?"

I figured it would be okay since lunch took us 2 hours because of the entire storytelling time at the table.

"Okay, you boys run upstairs and get changed and grab your towels." I changed in the bathroom downstairs. I could hear the boys giggling and laughing. It sounded like they were playfully tickling each other. I waited outside on the steps of the veranda. They came bouncing out and giggling about 15 minutes later. Davey didn't have a shirt on but Billy kept his t-shirt on to hide the bruises still on his back. Davey was carrying his boat and had his camera around his neck. Billy was carrying the towels.

"Can I have another piggyback ride?" Billy asked.

This time I told him to get on my shoulders. Davey put the boat down and took a picture of us sitting on the steps. Occasionally, I would tickle Billy's bare feet as we walked to the pool. I even stopped and had Davey tickle Billy's feet briefly. I couldn't help but think that it has to be good for Billy to laugh after all the little boy has been through this week.

We put our towels on the chairs. There wasn't anyone in the pool so I let Davey put the boat in the water. Davey showed Billy how to control the boat and then let him steer it around the pool.

"Try and catch me with the boat, Billy," Davey said as he jumped in the pool.

Billy chased Davey all around the pool with the boat. Davey kept diving under water. He said it was so cool to watch the boat pass over him. Billy giggled that it was 'No fair' because he couldn't 'catch' Davey with the boat. It was fun to watch them play together. Finally, the boat tapped the top of Davey's head as he went under the water. Billy jumped up and down saying 'Ya, I got you, I got you.' You could see that Davey was getting worn out. He swam to the edge of the pool where Billy was. 'Now it's your turn' to be chased by the boat.

Billy was nervous about being in the pool by himself. He came over and asked me to join him in the pool. He wrapped his arms around my neck. He tried to hide is head on behind my shoulder. He figured I would get it first. When we saw the boat coming toward us, we dove under the water together with Billy on my back. We were doing well at avoiding the boat together for a while. Finally, we were 'tagged' with the boat.

Davey jumped in the water and got on my back. Billy swam to the edge and picked up the controller. We went back and forth that way until the boat battery ran down. I 'tickle' threw the boys around for a while and then climbed out and laid on a deck lounge. Davey went and picked up to inflatable animals for him and Billy. They paddled around and played tag together.

"They sure look like brothers in there," John said leaning on the fence behind me.

"Yes, they do."

"Where are you heading on Monday?"

"I'm not sure. We haven't made any definite plans."

"Well, your cabin and the one next to you are not booked for next week. Betty and I talked last night. We would like to offer you, Davey, Billy and his mother the two cabins for next week at no charge. Of course, Billy's mother would have to agree when she comes tomorrow."

"That's very generous of you, John. I'll get Billy to call his mother as soon as we get back to the cabin and let you know by supper time."

"Hi Mr. Dorion," Davey said panting as he grabbed a towel off the chair. He grabbed the other one and wrapped it around Billy's shoulders.

"Hi boys."

"Mr. Dorion asked me something but I'm not sure if you boys would like it. He and his wife are offering us the cabin we are in now AND the cabin next door for Billy and his mommy, for all of next week at no charge. That's if we wanted to stay."

"Yes, yes, yes we want to stay!" They said together. They ran to the gate, back to John and gave him a group hug together.

"Now, I told Mr. Dorion that we would have to ask Billy's mommy to make sure it was okay with her. I told him Billy would call her when we got back to the cabin."

"She will say yes. I know she will. Can we go now and call her?" Billy said bouncing up and down.

"Okay come back, get the boat and put your sandals on."

I shook John's hand and thanked him for his generous offer. I then chuckled and asked him how he was going to explain to his wife the two wet spots the boys left on his slacks. He chucked and said she's used to him coming back from the pool area like that.

On the way back to the cabin, I thought that I should have called Billy's mother first and then told the boys. I figured that she really could use a vacation with Billy. She could politely say no to me but it wouldn't be as easy to say no to Billy. When John first told me, I thought of just asking Billy's mom tomorrow but then figured she would need to pack a few things to stay for a week. Having Billy call and giving her time to pack was the best way to get her to stay.

Billy really did not give her a chance to turn down John's offer. He told her that it would not cost her anything for the cabins. He told her Davey and I would be in the cabin right beside them. He told her all the fun things he wanted to do with her. He told her how great the cabins were, all the things they had inside, the bed upstairs and the kitchen. She finally agreed once Billy gave her a chance to talk. He started jumping up and down thanking his mother. He asked her to bring him his bathing suit, his favourite Teddy Bear and a whole bunch of things. She then asked to speak to me. When Billy handed me the phone, he started jumping up and down saying that 'she said yes.' Davey jumped up and down with him and hugged him.

"Hi, Diane."

"Is everything Billy said true?"

"Yes, it is."

"How did you manage to get two cabins at no cost? Are you secretly paying for them?"

"No Diane, but I did have that idea in the back of my mind. The owner and his wife talked it over last night and they wanted to do something nice for you and Billy."

"That is so nice of them." She started getting choked up.

"I have a confession. I figured you could really use this vacation with your son, after all the two of you have been through. I figured you might politely say no if I told you but I was hoping you could not say no to your son." I chuckled.

"You are so sneaky and so bad, Doug," She chuckled.

"Well… was I right? If I told you, would you have politely turned down the offer?" I teased.

"Maybe," she giggled.

"Then I'll gladly accept your 'punishment' for being sneaky and bad when you get here tomorrow." We both laughed.

"Count on it," she said trying unsuccessfully to sound stern.

"Okay, see you when you get here tomorrow, Diane, here's Billy."

I handed the phone back to Billy and sat on the couch. Davey came and sat on my knee.

"This is going to be so great having Billy and his mommy right next door." He hugged me.

"I love you too Mommy," he said as he hung up the phone.

Billy came and sat on my other knee and we had a group hug. I broke the hug by tickling both boys' sides at the same time.

"Okay, you boys go down and tell Mr. and Mrs. Dorion that Billy's mommy has accepted their generous offer."

"Do we need to change, Daddy?"

"No, you can go in just your swimsuits."

They ran out the door and down the lane. I looked around and the cabin seemed much bigger without the boys giggling and bouncing around. I gathered up the wet towels and stretched them over the shower curtain rod. I got out of my bathing suit and took a relaxing hot shower. I dried off and just put on a pair of shorts. I made the upstairs bed and picked up the boys clothes. I came back downstairs and just stretched out on the couch.

I must have dozed off. The next thing I knew, the boys had my feet tied down to the end of the couch and were tickling them. They were giggling and each was tickling one foot. They both jumped and laughed each time one of my feet jerked. They did not tie my hands so I playfully lunged at them. They squealed and jumped back. When I lay back, they would go back to tickling my feet. Davey took out a piece of wool and ran it between my toes as I did to him when I had his feet tied. He let Billy have a turn with the wool on the foot he was tickling. Davey pulled out the little brush and tickled my other foot with it. They switched back and forth. After I did not have the strength to lunge at them anymore, they took pity on me and stopped their tickling. They untied my feet. Davey climbed up and laid on me against the back of the couch. Billy knelt down on the floor beside me. I wrapped an arm around both of them and gave them a big hug.

"We got you good, didn't we Daddy?" Davey giggle.

"Yes, you did buddy."

"That was fun! Did you like having us tickle your feet?" Billy asked with a huge smile on his face.

"Yes, I did. You are a very good tickler."

"Davey showed me how to do it."

"Oh, he did…." I gently squeezed Davey's side. He giggled, twitched, and tried to grab my hand.

"Haaa Haaa, Billy tickled you just as much as me!" Davey squealed.

"That's right!" I gently squeezed Billy's side with my other hand. Billy managed to wiggle away from me but Davey was trapped on the couch with me. I took my free hand and grabbed Davey's belly.

"Haa Haa, Billy Help!" Davey laughed and bounced up and down.

Billy tried to pull my arm that was tickling Davey's belly. I stopped tickling Davey's belly and pointed to Billy's face.

"Hey, what's that on your face?" Billy looked confused. Davey looked at Billy.

"Billy, you have chocolate on both sides of your mouth." Davey giggled.

"Oh, Mrs. Dorion baked some chocolate cookies for us." He ran to the table and picked up the small bag.

"Would you like one?"

"I'll have one later."

Just then, I heard what sounded like a lawn tractor pulling up in front of the cabin. Billy went to the front door.

"It's Mr. Dorion."

"Oh, we forgot to tell you, Mr. Dorion said there was a campfire pit behind the cabin. I asked him to bring us up some campfire wood. We helped him load up a trailer at the back of his lawn tractor."

Billy let John in.

"Hi Mr. Dorion," Billy put his arms up for a hug.

"Hi Billy," John put down two plastic bags and picked Billy up and gave him a hug. Billy whispered something in John's ear.

"Yes Billy, it's all in those bags."

I looked at Davey and asked him what they were up too. He giggled and buried his face in my shoulder.

"Nothing," He muffled. Billy and John laughed.

"Come on Billy; help me unload the campfire wood." John carried Billy with him outside.

I started to tickle poke Davey to find out what they were planning. He kept wiggling and squirming but wouldn't say anything. It wasn't until I lifted his arm up and tickled his armpit that he told me.

"Haa Haa Haa OKAY! Haa Haa Haa I'll Tell!! I'll TELL! HAAAAAAAA!"

I stopped and he told me that he bought the firewood, hot dogs, buns, and marshmallows.

"Billy and I want to cook them on the campfire."

"That's a great idea, Son." I gave him a big hug.

"Oh, that reminds me I need to get my wallet to pay Mr. Dorion." He ran upstairs.

Billy came running in all excited.

"Mr. Dorion let me steer the tractor from the back of the cabin to the front."


"YA, it was fun!"

Davey came down with his wallet and took out the money to give to John.

"Have a good night guys" John turned and went out the door.

"Okay boys, would you go upstairs and change out of your swimsuits, please?"

I threw on a shirt and went out back to check out the campfire pit. John even left us a hatchet. The boys came out as I was sorting out the wood.

"No shirt, Davey?"

"Hee Hee, We are not 'in public', Daddy?" He giggled.

"What do we do first Daddy?"

"Safety is always first, so I need you and Billy to find a couple of buckets in the kitchen. Fill them with water and bring them out to me." As they walked along the side of the cabin, Billy asked Davey how water was going to help build a campfire. I chuckled to myself. The boys came back and put the buckets by the picnic table. I couldn't help myself. I had to ask Billy if Davey explained how water was going to help us build a campfire. He ran over to me giggling and poked me in the belly. Then he explained that the water was to put the fire out when we were done or in case the sparks started a small fire outside the pit. I hug him and told him that was very good. I gave Davey a wink and a smile.

I told the boys we start with paper in the center, then small pieces of wood then bigger pieces and finally the small logs. The boys began by balling up the newspapers and putting them in the center of the pit. I let them build the campfire with only a few hints from me.

Davey and Billy went back in the cabin to get the food. Davey also brought out a tablecloth for the picnic table. Billy handed me a metal stick.

"These are what we will use to cook the hot dogs and marshmallows," he said, sounding like such a little expert.

Davey laid everything out on the table. I asked Davey to go get the package of long matches by the fireplace inside. I handed each of them a match and told them to kneel on each side of the pit. They struck their matches and started lighting the campfire. I told them that we could start with a couple of marshmallows until the fire was hot enough to roast the hot dogs. It was fun to see both their marshmallows catch fire at the same time. Billy panicked and waved this in the air. Davey yelled to Billy to blow on it and showed him how with his.

"I learned that at the same cub camp I told you about Daddy." He giggled.

"What do I do with it now? It's all burnt"

"You eat it like this, watch." Davey put the whole marshmallow in his mouth and took off the first layer.

"Ewww," Billy said. Davey chuckled.

"Go ahead try it, you'll like it, honest."

Billy had this look on his face as if he was about to try some bitter cough syrup. He did put it in his mouth and take off the first layer. It was funny to watch. Then a look of surprise when he found out it really was good.

"Now put the rest back over the fire like I'm doing, Billy."

After a few minutes, a couple of logs shifted and sparks flew up in the air and disappeared.

"WOW!" Billy said in amazement.

"Is this your first campfire Billy?" I asked.


"Well, Davey and I will make sure it's an extra special campfire evening for you." I looked at Davey and he agreed.

"Thanks, guys, you are my best friends."

Davey showed Billy how to put his hot dog on the stick so it wouldn't fall in the fire and how to keep turning it so it would not burn. It was enjoyable to watch Davey teach Billy things like a big brother would. He took his time and explained everything until he knew Billy understood. The boys each ate four hot dogs. I only managed to eat two before I started feeling full.

"Daddy, Mr. Dorion said you would know what to do with these. How do you cook them over the fire?"

I looked at the package in his hand. They were Graham Wafers.

"You don't cook these. You make S'mores with them." Both boys had a confused look on their faces.

"Davey roast a marshmallow like you normally would." He got another marshmallow and put if on his stick. It caught fire and Billy yelled 'blow it out.' I took one wafer and put it on the table. I guided Davey's stick and placed the burnt marshmallow onto the wafer. I took a second wafer and put it on top of the marshmallow. I told Davey he could pull the stick out. I squished the wafers together and handed it to Davey.

"That's a S'more."

"Cool!" Davey took a bite.

"Is it good," Billy asked.

"It tastes great, thanks, Daddy."

"Can I make one?" Billy asked

"Sure," I handed him a marshmallow. I put a wafer down and Billy put his marshmallow on it. I handed him the second wafer. He squished the marshmallow and pulled the stick out.

"MMMM that is good." They each made three more S'mores and were full. I ate one.

We sat on the ground around the fire and watched as it slowly burned down to just grey and white coals. The boys poked sticks in the coals. Davey pulled his stick out and blew on it. Billy watched the sparks form Davey's stick rise into the night sky. Then Billy tried it with his stick. It was a clear night and you could see all the millions of stars. I moved over to lie on the grass. The boys laid the facing opposite way so their heads would be on either side of mine. We watched satellites cross the sky. We were even lucky enough to see a shooting star. I told the boys to each make a wish. Billy asked why. I said it was the same as making a wish when you blow out birthday candles. He seemed to understand.

Billy started to yawn. Davey swatted a mosquito on his arm. Those were the signals to head back inside the cabin. I told the boys to grab the buckets and slowly pour the water on the campfire. I told Davey to dump his first. Billy dumped his bucket. We put all the leftovers in one plastic bag and the garbage in the other. The boys folded up the tablecloth.

I sat down on the couch and told the boys to go take their shower. They looked at each other, yelled 'Tickle Wash!', and ran into the bathroom. For the next hour, laughter and giggle came from the bathroom.

When they can out of the bathroom, I was surprised to see Billy without his shirt on to hide his bruises. They walked up to me and raised their arms for my 'tickle' inspection. I ran my fingers along Davey's belly and then Billy's belly. Then I place my hands just above Davey's hips and lightly squeezed. I ran my fingers up and down Davey's ribs and finished with tickling his armpits. I turned my attention to Billy. When I placed my hands above his hips, he giggled. I just kept them there and asked him how his bruises felt. He says they felt much better with a smile. I gave him a hug and lightly rubbed his lower back. Then I figured it was okay to squeeze his sides. He giggled and wiggles around but didn't lower his arms. I ran my fingers up and down his ribs and finished off with his armpits.

Davey said that I forgot to inspect their feet. I told them to sit side by side on the couch and place their feet on my lap. Billy's feet were close to me so I started inspecting them. He giggled laughed and bounced back and forth, as I wiggled my fingers along his little soles and toes. I did the same to Davey and got the same reactions. I finished by rubbing all their feet at the same time to remove any leftover tickle sensations and to help them relax.

I got them each a glass of milk. I told them it was bedtime. I told them I would be sleeping on the couch and for them to sleep upstairs in the bed. They both looked disappointed and sad that I would not be sleeping in the same bed with them tonight. I told them that Billy's not scared anymore and they would enjoy sleeping together. They each gave me a hug headed to the stairs. Davey whispered something in Billy's ear. I asked him what he said. They both giggled 'NOTHING' and ran up the stairs.

I pulled out the couch and got the pillows out of the closest. I closed all the curtains and locked the door. I turned off the lights. I got undressed and put on a pair of boxers. I went in the bathroom to clean up. I climbed under the covers. The only problems sleeping on a pullout sofa is that there's a bar in the middle and that seems to be the thinnest part of the mattress. I was not tired so I just laid there reflecting on the events of the day.

A few minutes later, I heard the boys sneaking down the stairs. Each time a stair creaked, they stopped and I heard them inhale deeply. It was comical to listen to them coming down but I didn't dare chuckle out loud. It took them 15 minutes to come down the stairs. They crept up to the couch on either side and slowly climbed into bed. They gently moved my arms and cuddled up close. I waited until they were comfortable. I started to softly caress their sides with my fingers. They didn't know if I was still asleep so they tried their best not to make a sound or move. Billy was the first to twitch. Then Davey twitched. They both kept holding their breath trying not to laugh. Eventually, it became unbearable and the giggles started to come out. I started to tickle harder. That's when they knew I was awake. They stopped holding the giggles inside and started laughing out loud.

I stopped tickling but they continued to giggle for a few extra seconds. I asked Davey what they were doing downstairs. He giggled and playfully said 'trying to sleep Daddy.' I started to really tickle Davey for that quick-witted joke. He laughed and bounced around. I stopped and left him panting. I held Billy firmly and asked him the same question. He was giggling so much that he couldn't think so he just squeaked out the same thing Davey did: 'trying to sleep.' He started laughing and rolling around even before I started tickling him. That got Davey laughing. I gave Billy the same tickling I gave Davey for that answer.

I sat up against the back of the couch with my arms crossed in from of me. I tried sounding more firm when I asked them again but they knew I was faking it. They cuddled close to me, gave me those sincere puppy dog eyes, and simply said they liked sleeping next to me. I hugged them together. Then said for 'all' of us to go upstairs to sleep. They gave me a big hug and thank you. They grabbed my hands to make sure I didn't change my mind. Davey playfully pushed me up the stairs.

I climbed into bed and they climbed in on either side. Davey gave me a kiss on the cheek and said, 'I love you, Daddy.' Billy kissed me on the other cheek and told me he loves me too. I kissed each of them on the forehead and told them that I love both of them too. I asked if I could go to sleep now. They giggled and say 'YES' at the same time. I rubbed their backs and they were both asleep before me.

Editor's Note:

Doug is quite a man. Not many people especially single men would go so far to help a little kid and he has gone way beyond the call of duty now in two cases. I can tell he has fallen in love with Billy too. I am really worried about how things will go when Diane, Billy's mommy, gets there. She seems really nice and seems to have a great personality and sense of humour. My guess at this point is that Davey and Doug will be giving Billy and Diane a ride back home and maybe spending a lot of time there. Of course I could be wrong, after all I am not the Evil Author of this story only the Evil Editor. Silas111 probably has a surprise or two for us in the coming chapters.

S'mores are a Scout classic. However, we always had one more ingredient, a milk chocolate bar. You put the marshmallow in the Graham Cracker and then use the chocolate to scrape off the melted marshmallow. And you will want S'more. That's where the name comes from. The chocolate does make them a bit messy, okay a lot messy, but they are oh so good! Excuse me, I think I'm going to go build a fire in the grill...