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A Time For Family

A Time For Family
By: Georgia Bentz

Rating: G.
Summary: It's been five years after my last Thanksgiving story. Let's follow-up to all the Team and what they do this year. See how their lives have changed and what has remained the same.
This is a stand-alone story as well as a tie-in. Meaning you don't have to read my first Thanksgiving one if you don't want to.
Also wrote this a week before Thanksgiving. Sorry it's out so late. Enjoy this piece of fluffishness.
Also I changed Murdock's wife's name from Charlotte to Marlene. Thank you for all those who read this anyway.....:D
Warning: None. That is to say no swearing.


Thanksgiving 2002.....

Five years. Had it really been that long? Was Hannibal really gone? The answers to both questions were both yes. Five years ago Hannibal had invited his Team, nay his sons to a Thanksgiving supper. There he had revealed that he'd had lung cancer.

All had mourned for him and had come back for his funeral a week later.

The others' children who had been five or below at the time had been too young to understand what was going on. What they did know was that their grandpa Hannibal was gone. And he wasn't coming back.

No matter if one child slipped up and asked when he was going to come back from his mission from someone. Now they were all growing up. The boys were between the ages of seven and eight. The girls were nine or almost nine. They were all close in age.

The three houses that were miles apart, were all bustling with activity. If the walls could talk they would swear an earthquake had happened.

The stairs were being stepped on quite hard and there was a murmur of numerous conversations going on.

"Mom! Dad! Where are my Socks!?" Asked a perturbed Tanya Peck.

Templeton who had been kissing his wife Amy looked around the corner of the wall and up the stairs at his daughter. Who just so happened to be his and Amy's eldest.

He turned away from the corner and looked at his wife. Amy shrugged and she too peered around the corner. Looking rumpled and flushed. "I don't know Tany. Did you look in your suitcase? Or maybe in your drawer?"

Tanya nodded and headed back up the stairs. Also pausing at her brother's room. She knocked.

"Come in. If it's you, Mom, I swear I'm not responsible. I didn't put bluing on your sweat.... Oh hi Sis." Tim glanced up at his sister. He was currently hunched over his lap top. Newly acquired from last Christmas. He looked fully up at Tanya and flashed her a grin. "What can I do for you?"

Tanya's face was a little perturbed. "I just wanted to warn you. Don't go downstairs."

"Why not?"
Tim asked.


"Our parents. They're.... You know.... They're kissing! In the living room. And anyway! I have to get my socks."

Tim nodded and watched as his sister disappear. He sighed in relief. His face lit up as he looked at the web page before him. "Ahhh so now I know. Thought you were smart did you Tany?" He grinned at the live journal before him.

Meanwhile in her room....

"Ah-Ha! Success!"

She put her socks in her suitcase and decided that she was ready for the annual trip to Black Rock. Even though it wasn't far from where she and her parents lived Grandma Maggie always let them spend the night.

Grandma Maggie still hadn't gotten over Grandpa Hannibal's death and apparently neither had their girls.

She turned on her own lap-top and shrieked. "TIMOTHY ALLEN ARTHUR PECK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

At that point Templeton and Amy rushed up the stairs to see what was going on....

THE BARACUS'S HOUSE IN CHICAGO......

The triplets were all in their room packing. Their baby brother was now six. Their mother Rachael was packing for him. There were sighs and questions coming from his room.

"Do you want to wear your mechanic's shirt then and maybe your mechanics' shoes?"

A cry of delight was heard and their mother started up again.

"Okay. What about your overalls and your Nike shoes Baby? And that one gold necklace your daddy got you?"

The triplets looked at each other. Their father had not objected to his son wearing jewelry. Unlike Templeton who repeated that no son of his would wear jewelry unless it was a wedding ring.

Ceiceily giggled and looked at her sisters. They looked at Ceiceily and shrugged. They had to admit that Jarred was very adorable.

They finished packing and soon all six were in the van travelling at an abominable speed to get to Black Rock California from Chicago. It was a ten hour trip. But the kids knew what was in store and sat or read or in Jarred's case slept. The triplets entertained themselves with drawing or playing 'Count The License Plates'. For once there weren't any arguments. And no 'But Mommy I
reeeeeaaalllllyyyy gotta go!' Or 'But Daaaaaaadddd I'm Reeeeeeeaaaaaaalllllllyyyyy Hungry!'

As the Baracus' were travelling a serene scene unfolds at the Murdock house.....

"Gimme! I saidddddddddddd GIMMEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!" Squealed a voice as she chased after her brother.

All of a sudden a tall lanky frame was situated at the end of the corridor so the culprit couldn't escape.

"What?!" Asked the culprit in question. Looking innocently at his dad.

"Wha'cha mean wha'?" Asked the soft Texan accent.

"Explain?"

The lanky man continued as he turned to his and Marlene's daughter. One of them anyway. "Wha's wrong Erie?"

Erica looked at her father. "He's got.... 'Puff' 'Puff' my........ *Puff * * Puff* .......... Hairbrush!" Erin explained as she tried catching her breath. Just then a resounding voice called out.

"HEMPSHAW MANCUSO MURDOCK!!!!!!!! YOU HAD BETTER COME DOWN HERE OR YOUR SON AND YOUR DAUGHTER ARE DEAD!!!!!!! DO YOU HEAR ME? D-E-A-D!!!!!!!"

"Uh-oh. M'cue ta go. Gotta sk'daddle guys..... Gotta see wha' Erin an' Nick got inta. Hannibal-Matthew give ya sist'r back her hairbrush. Now."

Hannibal-Matthew did as he was bidden and both he and Erica went to see what their twins were up to. Oh yeah. Did I forget to tell you? Murdock and Marlene have two sets of twins.

The two crept downstairs and saw their brother and sister covered head to toe in mud. Not just any mud they had covered themselves in chocolate syrup as well.

"B-But Mommy. I-I didn' know it was gonna happen like that!" Protested Nick. He was one of the ones who always did the pranking and joketelling.

"You didn't know that when you played in the mud and when the syrup 'jumped' on you like you claimed it did.... That you'd get dirty?!" A distraught Motherly voice asked in complete horror.

She caught Murdock's eyes and turned back to her youngest son and daughter. Hannibal-Matthew and Erin turned to each other and crept to the wall of the kitchen.

They stared at their respective twins. Murdock gulped and turned to Marlene. "Th'y look 'dorable?" He tried not to laugh. He held it in. At least until his face started turning purple and then Marlene glared at him too.

"That's it! I give up! You win! You win! I'm going to crawl under the bed and hide!" She turned on her heel and left the kitchen.

"An' I guess I bett'r get an explanation from you two?" Murdock had his hands on his hips and tried to look stern at his youngests.

Nick fixed him with an innocent look. "Ummm it fell Daddy?"

Murdock glanced at Nick. "Wh'ch part fell? Th' Mud? Or th' syrup?"

Nick sighed. "Both? Actually Rin helped me with the syrup."

Erin sighed. "I didn't know he'd pour it on us. Then stick us in the mud." Erin also tried looking angelic. Even though they were often partners in crime.

"Honestly Daddy."

"Uh-huh. Go get clean'd up. AN' you two. Quit eavesdroppin'."

Murdock looked towards the wall that connected the dining room with the kitchen. "Help ya broth'r an' sist'r. W'gotta get in th' car sometime!"

He shook his head and headed upstairs to see if he could get Marlene out of her hiding place. He hoped that for once she wasn't hiding under the bed. Although the chances were she was. * Poor Marly *. He thought to himself. It wasn't that he was a workaholic. But he didn't get to spend as much time as he liked with his kids. What with owning an airport and air field. He was busy managing both things at once.

At least Marlene had understood and she had moved her hair salon to the basement. That way she could be near the kids and they could still have two incomes coming in.

He found Marlene packing for their trip to Maggie's. Like BA and Face the Murdocks kept Maggie company as well. And besides Tessa, Hanna-Belle, Clara and Claire benefitted from having cousins over so they could forget their grief. At least for a little while. And Mama Baracus had promised to make an appearance sometime.

"Marly? Ya okay?"

Marlene looked at Murdock and smiled.

"Of course I'm okay. They're your children from now on. I'll keep the good ones thank you very much." She smiled a little wider as he strode over and massaged her shoulders and placed gentle loving kisses on her neck.

"Ya tense Babe. Lemme r'lieve some'a tha' Stress."

She giggled and then caught herself. "HM we should be packing. Maggie'll have a cow if we're late again. I do not want any more sniggering from the guys."

Murdock sighed. "Okay. I'll pack."

She sighed again. "I packed for you. And I even remembered your razor. And the unblown up half of Bogey T. Bear."

"Oh. Wull thanks. I still love ya. Ev'n iffen w'got terr'rs fer child'r'n." He kissed her cheek and sat on the bed. "Can I help you pack?"

She shook her head. "No. Make sure the kids are cleaned up and dressed and ready to go. I've got to pack some more." She shooed him out and Murdock went to go look for his kids again.

There was an earpiercing scream. "Aggggggghhhhhhhhh!!!!!!! Noooooooo!!!!!! Not The Purple Googggggllliiieeeessss!!!!!!!"

He followed the sound to the bathroom and found two still clothed children standing in the shower and dripping wet. He found two very dry children who were giggling away.

"Uh dare I ask wha's goin' on?"

Erica and Hannibal-Matthew looked up at their father. They were the dry ones.

Erica started. "Uhhhh well see....."

Hannibal-Matthew took up the explanation. "I told Nick that he didn't have to get undressed. Because he said he didn't want to have to take a shower. And that the purple googlies'd get him if he did take a shower. Especially if he took a shower with Erin." Hannibal-Matthew looked pleased with his explanation.

While Erin was wet and sobbing uncontrollably. Murdock took his baseball cap off. He brushed a hand through his hair. He shooed Erica and Hannibal-Matthew out of the bathroom. Then he turned back to the dripping wet twins. "Good thin' we got two bathrooms. Ain't tha' right? Nick you go ta th' downstairs bathroom an' Erin ya stay here an' get all clean'd up too."

Finally when everything had been sorted out. And after everyone had been cleaned and pressed. Marlene gave her yearly lecture. "No pranking the girls. Especially you Nikolas and Rin. No scaring the pants off of your grandmother Maggie by jumping out of trees and teaching the younger kids to do it. Meaning YOU, Hannibal-Matthew and YOU Erica! Do I make myself absolutely and positively clear? Do I? Because if I didn't I'm blaming your father!"

She strode out of the house with her family following behind her. "I will not be responsible for another year of pranks and jokes. And Maggie telling me it's okay. Because it's NOT okay. Get me?" She was still speaking to herself but making sure her children were getting her meanings.

They were all nodding in a synchronized motion. "Yes Mom." Was heard every once in a great while.

Finally they were all in their mini-van on their way to Maggie's. It was only a couple of hours away. But not taking chances Maggie told Nick to empty his pockets, and proceeded to empty out Erin's pockets as well. Seeing as they weren't in the mood to object she hid the objects that were confiscated inside the glove compartment. Erin and Nick looked very dejected. Finally they all arrived at Maggie's house.

BA hadn't made it yet but they were expecting him any time. Maggie invited them all in and soon they heard the doorbell ringing.

"I'llllllllll get it!" Erica said as she skipped to the door. Before she could open it however it was pushed open by a burly man with a scowl and with an equally scowly little boy on his shoulder.

Erica squealed. "UNCLE BA!!!!!!!!"

Instantly BA's scowl disappeared and he scooped up Erica on his other shoulder. She squealed in delight and smiled at Jarred.

"Hi Jarred."

Jarred smiled back even though he barely remembered his exuberant cousin. Soon Erin came to see what was going on followed by the boys.

Erin's eyes lit up and she hugged BA's knees. Both the boys ran up to the triplets.

"Hi. Hello." Both boys said.

Rachael smiled. "Awww aren't they sweet girls?"

"Oh.... Yeah.... Sweet...." All three said at the same time.

Rachael held her arms out and the boys ran into the now open arms. Soon the twins' parents came into view.

"Wull BA. Long time no see."

BA nodded and spoke. "Yeh man. Been a while. Let's git ta the dinin' room."

Rachael had put down the boys but Erin was sitting on BA's foot and had her arms around his leg. That way when he walked she was walking with him. And very attached to him. Erin giggled. Erica was still on BA's shoulder while Jarred perched on the other shoulder. The twin boys ran ahead of the others and finally skidded to a stop in front of triplet girls.

Ceiceily, Jessica, and Carmen smiled and bent down to the twins' level. "Hi. We're Ceiceily and Carmen. And this's our sister Jessica."

Jessica answered. "Jessa for short."

 

The boys smiled. "Really? We don't remember you. But you sure seem nice. For cootie wearing girls." The boys giggled and the triplets looked at each other then at their mother.

Rachael just laughed and repeated. "Aren't they sweet?"

"As far as little brothers go." Jessa finally admitted.

Finally they all made it into the dining room. Maggie asked them to sit down. Then she seated herself at the head of the table. BA gave grace and soon they were all telling what each was thankful for.

"I'm thankful Mom and Dad haven't grounded us....yet." Erin said.

Nick said. "I'm grateful we're here and eating turkey."

"I'm thankful that Grandma Maggie loves us enough to put up with our pranks and jokes....and I'm thankful for her...er hospitality?" Hannibal-Matthew said as he caught his mother's warning look.

 

"I'm thankful for a nice Gramma." Said Erica trying her hardest not to get into trouble.

Finally Maggie spoke. "I'm thankful for all the family assembled here. And for the family that has gone on. We still miss you Hannibal."

At that the grown ups all raised their glasses and the kids followed suit.

"To Hannibal." The three elder team members mumbled.

"To Grandpa." A few voice chorused.

The boys just nodded. Not really understanding all that was being said. As dinner progressed Marlene had to reprimand her children.

"Erin! Nikolas! Stop both of you! You will not be starting a food fight! I saw that look."

Maggie only chuckled. "It's really okay Marlene. They're young and impulsive. If only I were young again."

Marlene sent her children glares again. "I know Maggie. It's just...."

Maggie smiled. "Just? I don't mind Marlene. I promise I don't. If they get too out of hand I'll hose them off myself. With the hose on full blast." She chuckled at that.

The kids all gulped. A 'Yes Gramma and Yes Mama' was heard all around the table.

 

Hannibal-Matthew looked pointedly at his siblings. They innocently looked back at him. He sighed and said. "Sometimes it's hard being the responsible one."

At that Murdock snorted with laughter and almost fell off his chair in the process.

The dinner resumed with peace and some tranquility. Afterwards the kids went to play in their 'cousins' playroom and the adults congregated around the living room. Eggnogs in hand.

Marlene and Murdock were occupied in the recliner. Amy and Face were sitting on the love seat. BA and Rachael were seated on the regular couch next to Maggie. And Maggie was nursing her eggnog. They reminisced and laughed about everyone's adventures. Soon they all retired for the night. As soon as the dinner was taken care of and the last dish washed.

Maggie smiled as soon as there was sleeping going on around her. She stood out on the balcony. She raised her head to the stars and she sighed.

"I miss you John. I miss you so much. Why did you have to go?"

"I didn't go. Not really. I'm still in your heart Marge."

"I hate the name Marge." Maggie replied indignantly.

The phantom or whatever it was laughed. "Okay then 'Mo' like I said I'm not really gone. I'm more here then anything else. Just because you can't touch me. Believe me when I say I'm here."

She nodded. "You're always here when I need you. Which seems to be more often then not. I've missed you a lot these past few days."

"So I've noticed. I've missed you too. But don't worry. We get to see each other again. Not soon as you'd like it too. But soon."

He touched her bare shoulder then he was gone again. She went back to her bed and turned on the lamp. There was hers and Hannibal's picture on the bedside table. Right next to the clock radio he insisted they get. The only thing it did was play reveille now.

She kissed the photo and then turned on her side falling asleep. "Good night John. Happy Thanksgiving Love."

A voice whispered. "Happy Thanksgiving to you too Darling."

Then all was silent as a figure hovered lovingly over the bed. Making sure she had no bad dreams. And a faint scent of cigar smoke seemed to enter the room.

Yes this was certainly one of the best Thanksgivings there had ever been.

 

THE END. :D


A Time For Family by Georgia Bentz

 

 


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