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Views: 1641 Created: 2009.11.21 Updated: 2009.11.21

Zeke and Lily - Making a Memory

Chapter 2

Destination: Miami

The pilot’s voice came over the monitors: “Ladies and Gentlemen, we are beginning our descent on Miami. The local time is 6:30 p.m. and the weather is a balmy 83 degrees.”

From her window seat, Lily saw the aerial view of Miami as they began to descend for the runway. Even off in the distance, she could see the Atlantic Ocean. The roads seemed busy and the metropolis filled her with excitement. The plane landed smoothly, and they slowed rolled up to the gate. Passengers stood and gathered their items. Zeke stood up and stepped out into the aisle, allowing Lily to walk out in front of him. He readied his button-down shirt to wrap around her. As she stepped out in front of him, she smiled and winked at him. She walked down the aisle and exited the plane, as dry as a bone.

They walked down terminal B, hand-in-hand and slowly. With no hurry, they strolled along. The vacation was upon them. Lily looked down and began playing hop-scotch with the colored tiles on the floor.

“Soooooooo…” she said playfully. “Where will we be going on this trip?”

“There will be a three day cruise to the Bahamas. I believe I said it would be a four day cruise in the letter,” explained Zeke. “Then we will arrive in the Bahamas and stay there for six days. Then we will return on a three day cruise back here to Miami.”

Taking the escalator, they went down to the baggage claim. Zeke began checking the monitors about the baggage machines, looking for their flight number.

“What islands?” Lily asked.

“Several,” he replied quickly.

“You’re not going to tell me?” she asked while laughing.

“Nope,” he replied with a grin on his face. “But I will tell you that you won’t forget this trip, and the blue water alone will take your breath away.”

Finally their luggage appeared on the belt. Zeke picked it up, and they exited the airport. Right outside was a line of cabs waiting on passengers.

“Which cab should we take?” Zeke asked.

“That one,” she decided while pointing one of the cabs.

“Why that one?” Zeke asked.

“Because it says ‘Coconut Grove’ on the side of it. That’s a neat name,” she answered as Zeke loaded the luggage into the trunk.

Away they went.

“Where to?” said the driver.

“The Biscayne Bay Marriot,” Zeke said as he noticed Lily yawning broadly. “Are you getting tired, Girl?”

“Huh-uh” she said as she yawned again.

She laughed as she rested her head on his lap and closed her eyes. They rolled down the Dolphin Expressway. Dusk had begun and the bright rays of daylight turned into golden beams of sunset. Zeke looked down at Lily, her face lightly illuminated in the twilight. She looked so peaceful, and she looked so happy. He gently stroked his hand threw her hair. It was long and beautiful, and it felt so soft in his fingertips. Sometimes it was curly and bounced when she walked. Other times, like right now, it was straight and cascaded down her neck and shoulders with an elegance that made you stop and notice her.

Her face was completely relaxed, and only occasionally twitched ever-so-slightly as he kissed her forehead. While caressing her cheeks, he slipped her pacifier into her mouth. Without being disturbed from sleep, she accepted the pacifier and nestled it tightly between her lips.

She shifted herself and laid on her back, her neck and head still resting on his lap. For Zeke, there were few things so beautiful in life as the sight of Lily asleep. At these moments she was completely serene, pampered by an absolute feeling of safety he provided. The kind of love that can be spoken in words, but can always be felt strongly without saying anything. He traced her eyebrows with his thumbs. They were sculpted with great attention, her trademark of sorts: the little details.

Zeke looked up and saw the Marriott, just a block away. In one swift, yet delicate motion, he slid his fingers down her face and removed the pacifier from her lips. She softly awakened, and sat up. They got out of the cab, and entered the hotel.

The lobby was quiet, unlike the city of Miami, still buzzing with life and a never-ending supply of energy. Lily struggled a little to awaken herself as they approached the check-in counter. It had been a rather unexpectedly long, busy day. Zeke got the room card and they proceeded to the elevator.

“What floor are we on?” she asked while yawning, and pushing the up button.

“We’re almost at the top. The 27[sup]th[/sup] floor,” he replied as the elevator doors and they got on.

Her eyes grew big.

“That’s way up there,” she said.

The doors closed, and she turned to face him. His left hand reached to feel her bottom. The overwhelming sensation of being little washed over her and she invited it to effect every nerve-ending sense within her body. She curled up her shoulders and tucked her head as she leaned into his chest and buried her face. She knew what he was about to do and the delightful baby feeling mixed with the danger of discovery made for a butterfly-filled tummy.

He unzipped her jean shorts, lowered them to her ankles and off her feet. She stood there in her diaper and his button down shirt, preparing for the thrill of the walk to their room. She could feel her heart beating through her chest.

“Are you getting hungry?” he asked her, knowing she was distracted.

“Yeah,” she said, incapable of saying much else.

Her excitement was building. She counted the floors one at a time. Then the elevator stopped and the doors opened. She boldly stepped out, looked left and right, and then quickly ran back into the elevator into Zeke’s arms. They walked back out of the elevator and down the hall. At the end of the hall was a young couple, relatively the same age as Zeke and Lily. The two couples casually passed each other in the hall. As Zeke opened the door, Lily waved to the couple lightheartedly, and then walked into the room.

Zeke shut the door and turned around to see Lily leap up into the air and land on the bed.

“So, are you gonna order room service?” she asked as she bounced on the bed.

“I already have,” he said as he placed their luggage on one of the beds. “When we checked in. It should be here any minute. Which means…..”

“Which means what?” she asked perplexed.

“We need to get ready for dinner,” he said as he opened the AB bag.

He pulled out a blanket and placed it on the carpet between the two beds.

“Shall we have a picnic?” he asked.

She clapped her hands and hopped down off the bed onto the blanket. He began to unbutton her shirt, and off it came, followed by her bra. She stood up on her knees and embraced him again. Hugs were a very frequent and important thing for her to give and receive. Every hug meant something to her, and Zeke always returned the hug honestly. She could sense he did this, and that he was sincere. He reached down to her diaper for a check. The little feeling swept over her again. Her diaper was dry and as Zeke discovered this, she winked at him.

A knock came from the door. Zeke stood up and answered the door as Lily ducked behind the bed, playfully peaking up over the edge. He returned with a tray with several plates and drinks on it. He picked up one of the drinks, reached into the AB bag, pulled out one of her diapers and placed it over his forearm like a waiter’s towel.

“Mademoiselle,” he said, using the best French accent he could muster. “We have a vewee, vewee special meal for you zis evening. Fehrst, a caneestair of Coka Colah.”

He cracked the can open and handed it to her. Next, he picked up one of the covered plates and continued with his French waiter routine:

“Ahnd now zee main course. A plate of deh-lee-shus spah-get-tee.”

He uncovered the plate and placed it in front of her. Her eyes grew big and she smiled from ear to ear. She plunged her right hand into the spaghetti and began playing with it. Zeke grinned and turned on the TV as she engulfed the first mouthful.

“Nick-a-woah-dee-ahn,” she mumbled with a mouthful of food.

Zeke turned on Nickelodeon, right in the middle of a SpongeBob marathon. Lily cheered and continued eating. Zeke pulled a bib from the bag and attached it around her neck. She was now enamored with the TV, and took big swigs of the soda. Zeke gathered his plate and drink and sat next to her. He spent the time watching her enjoy herself. She was very much in a world of her own but kept looking over at him and smiling.

He finished his plate long before her. She was a little distracted and had no desire to let this fun time end quickly. Zeke got up and walked into the bathroom. He was gone for a little while. She finished her spaghetti at long last and licked the plate clean. Then she drank the remainder of her soda. Covering her hands and forearms was spaghetti sauce. She wiped her hands on her bib, and looked up at Zeke who was walking back into the room. He had a washcloth in his hand.

She showed her arms and hands to him. She was an absolutely adorable sight to behold. He knelt down with a grin and wiped her face, hands and arms clean. He removed the bib from her neck, and reached down to unfasten her diaper. Lily looked at him confused.

“But my diaper isn’t wet yet,” Lily stated.

“It will be if I dip you into the tub with it on,” Zeke responded while unfastening her diaper and lifting her up into his arms.

“A bath?” she asked.

“You betcha,” he said while bouncing her up and down in his arms.

As he did this she began letting out a tiny barrage of little feminine burps, followed by laughter as she covered her mouth, shyly.

He carried her into the bathroom where a tub full of bath water filled with bubbles was awaiting her. She clapped her hands excitedly, proclaiming: “Yay!”

Slowly he lowered her into the bathtub. Her bottom touched the warm water first. Her attention changed to how warm the water felt on her skin and as he lowered the rest of her body into the tub, she closed her eyes, reveling in the warmth. He eased her body down onto the tub bottom and leaned her head back on a towel he placed on the edge of the tub as a pillow.

A once bouncy, silly girl had calmed. It was exactly what a warm bath should do to a girl. Zeke began to bathe her with a washcloth. He took his time, slowly and deliberately, to continue preparing her for bed. Her eyes remained closed and her face had relaxed again. She was getting tired.

He finished bathing her, but left her in the tub for a few minutes as he prepared her clothing for bed. Then, he returned to the bathroom and very gently lifted her up out of the tub. She whimpered for a brief moment as the cool air touched her skin.

“Shh,” Zeke softly whispered as he wrapped her in a towel and dried her.

He carried her out and placed her on the bed. Everything she would be wearing for the night was spread out next to her. He placed the pacifier in her lips, and winked at her as he raised her bottoms and legs in the air. The sweet scent of powder filled the air. He lowered her legs back down to the bed and onto a diaper. She parted her legs as he wrapped the diaper up and into place, fastening it around her waist.

He gently sat her up. She raised her arms straight up in the air as he lowered her nightie down over her head. Next came the softest socks in the world. Finally, a super soft baby blanket from her crib. She was being surrounded in total comfort. Everything touching her was soft. She was bathed and clean and ready to sleep, but there was one more thing to do yet.

Zeke climbed into bed next to her. He cradled her body over his lap and covered her body with the sheets and blanket from the bed. He handed her the teddy bear, and removed the pacifier from her mouth. Lily looked at the teddy bear and quickly took the bracelet from its neck and put it on her wrist (remembering Mr. Woody’s directions to do so before she went to sleep.)

She looked up at Zeke who was placing the nipple of a baby bottle to her lips.

“Open,” he said.

She parted her lips and took the nipple. She leaned her head on his chest and closed her eyes. Taking in the first mouthful, she tasted the sweet flavor of warm milk. It was a perfect way to end an absolutely wonderful day. She clung to his body as she nursed on the bottle, so very happy to be right where she was. Zeke began running his fingers through her hair which always felt heavenly.

He leaned in and kissed her forehead ever-so-gently, and began to lightly rock her body back and forth in his arms. Lily was filled with emotion. She often couldn’t find a way to channel that emotion, and she always felt silly after she cried, especially if someone saw her cry. This moment, however, was different. Tears formed in her eyes, built from a love within that has to come out. She closed her eyes, allowing the tears to roll down her cheeks right into Zeke’s waiting fingertips. He delicately wiped them away. She didn’t feel silly for crying this time.

She finished her bottle, and Zeke placed it on the night stand. Still lightly rocking her, he patted her back. She let out those little burps again.

“Thank you, Daddy,” she whispered. “I love you so much.”

“Thank you, BabyGirl” he replied, as he placed the pacifier back in her mouth and kissed her forehead once more. “And I love you just as much.”

He placed her on her tummy (her favorite position for sleeping). She closed her eyes and squeezed her teddy bear tightly, and just that quickly she was asleep.

Hours later, she awoke to a voice: “Lily Girl,” the voice said.

She looked around the room and couldn’t see anyone. The TV was still on and cast dim light throughout the room (Zeke’s answer to a travel nightlight).

“Mr. Woody?” she said, calling out.

“Over here, Lily Girl,” said the voice.

She looked over at the window, and there sitting on the window ledge was Mr. Woody.

“That is you, Mr. Woody,” she whispered.

“You needn’t be so quiet. He can’t hear you. You’re dreaming right now,” explained Mr. Woody. “I think he fancies you, Lily Girl.”

“I know,” said Lily as she gazed at him asleep next to her in the bed.

“Are you ready for a trip?” Mr. Woody asked.

“Yes! Where are we going?” she asked, while hopping out of bed.

“It’s a surprise,” Mr. Woody said as she walked over to him at the window.

“Why doesn’t anyone ever want to tell me where they’re taking me?” she asked.

“I don’t want to tell you where we’re going. I want to show you, and when it comes to you as a surprise, your face lights up and you get very excited. It’s a joy to watch, and it gives me pride to know I was able to make you feel that way. I believe your Zeke fella over there sees it the same way….. Now, let’s get going. Close your eyes and open them again.”

She closed her eyes and opened them, just as he had instructed, to find herself standing at the edge of the beach behind the hotel. She looked around in amazement, and then to Mr. Woody for explanation.

“No time for that! Come along!” Mr. Woody said and he grabbed her hand and ran.

They ran into the middle of the beach where she saw a sand castle, a really large sand castle.

“Now, I will explain this,” he said. “I built this sand castle myself, and I’m very proud of it. Come on!”

They ran inside the castle and up to the roof where they sat.

“I’ve got to be dreaming,” she said. “You built this huge sand castle yourself. It’s big enough for us to go inside of it, and it’s strong enough for us to sit on the roof.”

“Lily Girl, you haven’t seen anything yet,” Mr. Woody said with a grin. “Take a look in the ocean.”

She looked out into the ocean, shimmering with moonlight and cresting with waves. She took in a deep breath of the ocean air, and let it back out.

“I’ve never been to the beach before,” she said.

“Is that so?” asked Mr. Woody. “Well, then, I will have to make your first trip to the beach very special.”

He snapped his fingers and the waves died out. The water became still and the moonlight grew brighter over the water. Everything got quiet. Then suddenly, a dolphin leapt up out of the water, arced in the air and dove back in. Another dolphin did the same thing a moment later. Then several dolphins began jumping out of the water at the same time. Soon the ocean in front of them was filled with dolphins. Lily’s mouth dropped wide open, and she gasped at what she was seeing. She soon found herself applauding it, and just as quickly as it began, it ended.

Lily hugged Mr. Woody.

“Thank you so much, Mr. Woody,” she said to him.

“You’re very welcome,” he replied. “Now, you need to rest. Tomorrow is an even bigger day than today was. Close your eyes and open them back up. I’ll see you again soon, Lily Girl.”

She closed her eyes and re-opened them. She found herself staring at the ceiling of the hotel room. She heard the sound of her diaper tapes unfastening, and suddenly her bottom and legs were lifted in the air. She closed her eyes, pretending to still be asleep as Zeke changed her diaper.

When finished, he lifted her up into his arms. She opened her eyes and said: “Boo!”

“Trying to spook me, are you?” said Zeke as he laughed, removed her nightie and placed her back down on the bed. “Do you know what happens to BabyGirls who try to spook their Daddies?”

“What?” Lily giggled.

“They get tickled!” he replied as he pinned her arms above her head and tickled her sides.

She howled with laughter as he planted a raspberry zerbit on her tummy. She curled her body up around his head until he stopped. Still laughing she sat up and looked around. Everything was already packed up and ready to go. He had even laid out her outfit for the day on the bed ……. a pink t-shirt and a white pair of overall shorts.

“Arms up!” he said as she did so and he slid the t-shirt on her. “Legs up!”

She lifted her legs in the air and the overall shorts were soon on her. He handed her two hair ties and a brush.

“Pigtails, Daddy?” she asked, taking the items from him.

“Pigtails, BabyGirl,” he said.

She sat on the bed Indian-leg style as she brushed her hair and put it in pigtails. Zeke checked the room once more before they left. He gathered their luggage and opened the door. Lily walked out into the hallway, and there was the young couple from last night. She froze in place, realizing her outfit was very young-looking. It didn’t concern her very much, at least not until they got on the elevator together.

The ride down to the lobby was very quiet, and Lily was glad when the doors finally opened. They stepped out into the lobby and proceeded right out to catch a cab. The ride to the port was really interesting as they got to see a lot of the beach and parts of Southern Florida. It was so busy, and seemed like a great place to vacation, but the fast-pace would probably not be comfortable for her. She stared out the window at many things, but her attention soon was drawn to the massive cruise ship ahead of them. Even from a distance, it seemed large and as they drew closer to it, it just kept getting bigger.

When the cab stopped, they were right next to the cruise ship. Lily got out of the car, and stared up at it in wonderment. The words ‘Royal Caribbean’ stretched along the entire side of it. Zeke, who was gathering their luggage from the cab, noticed her awe-struck state. He walked up to her and took her by the hand.

“Well, BabyGirl, here we are,” he said as they both gazed up at the ship. “Are you ready to make a memory you won’t forget?”

Lily, who was still in awe, simply said: “Oh, yeah.”