“Hold on just one second, I have to take this.”
Taylor cut the sound from the studio and answered his phone, leaving Zac with a very unimpressed look on his face and undoubtedly muttering something derogatory under his breath.
“Hey it’s me. Look… I think I’m going to be a bit caught up here this afternoon, but Willa has her immunisation appointment at one…”
“No problem,” Taylor looked up just in time to see Zac poke his tongue out, “I think we’re just about to break for lunch anyhow. Should I come pick her up?”
“Yeah that’d help,” Natalie kept the scorn out of her voice.
“Doctor Fenton, yeah.”
“No problem,” he assured, “I’ll be there soon.”
“Thanks Tay. See you then.”
Taylor hung up and reconnected the studio audio in time to hear Zac singing something about Taylor’s choice of shirt for the day.
“Zac!” he got his attention, “I have to cut out early. I have to take Willa for an appointment.”
“Are you kidding me?”
“Sorry. I’ll come back when we’re done. It shouldn’t take long.”
“And what if we can’t get this part down?”
Taylor grit his teeth as he registered the anger building in Zac’s voice.
“I’ll be gone two hours. Max. And it sounds to me like you need a break anyway. We can pick up right where we left off.”
Zac grunted as he slipped the headphones off and went to check his phone which had been left on a speaker to his right. Taylor cut the studio audio again before turning to Isaac who’d been sitting quietly in the corner with a notepad.
“You okay to hold down the fort?” he asked.
Isaac looked up lazily, obviously not interested in any quarrel his brothers might have had going on.
“He’ll be fine,” he shook his head, “by the time you get back he’ll be over it.”
“Yeah right,” Taylor scoffed, “but what about you?”
“By the time you get back, I’ll probably be over it too.”
“Over him you mean?”
“Tomato, tomato,” Isaac waved his hand indifferently, going back to his notes.
Taylor sighed and stood from the chair, grabbing his jacket and scarf from where they’d been resting over the back.
“Just don’t kill each other in the meantime,” he insisted, pocketing his phone as he threw them on.
Isaac grunted in response and Taylor rolled his eyes before heading out. He didn’t bother to say goodbye to Zac as he left the studio and headed downstairs and out to the cars.
It wasn’t long before he was pulling up in Zac’s driveway, and Natalie was ready at the door with Willa and her bag.
“Will you need the stroller?” she asked as she handed their daughter over and put the bag into the car.
“Nah,” Taylor assured as he moved around to put her into the car seat, “we’ll be fine. Should I bring her back here after?”
“Give me a call and I’ll let you know how we’re going. I don’t know why, but there’s something up with Kate today…”
“Tell me about it,” Taylor mused with a quick glance at the house to make sure Kate wasn’t around, “something’s up with Zac too. It’s been a fun morning.”
“If he’s anything like Kate then you have my sympathy,” Natalie had come around to his side and took the moment to plant a kiss on his cheek.
“See you when you get back.”
“Will do,” he smiled in return before she disappeared into the house again.
Taylor checked one last time that Willa was safe in her spot before closing the back door and returning to the driver’s seat.
It took a little longer to get to the doctor surgery, but Willa was happily content with one of her stuffed animals. Occasionally Taylor would throw a glance in the mirror as he wondered why she was being so quiet, and all he got was a cheeky grin back.
When he finally pulled up she let out a protest at the car stopping. With a chuckle to himself, he got himself out and went to fetch her things before fetching his daughter.
“Come on Willa,” he said softly, “please don’t hate me for this. Hate the doctor instead, okay?”
But she was busy looking around at where she was, her eyes soon falling on a toddler somewhere between hers and Viggo’s ages.
Taylor made his way in to the front desk to announce their arrival before being directed through to the waiting area. It had been a long time since he’d been there – usually if one of the kids got sick he’d end up with the rest of them while Natalie dealt with it.
He’d barely taken a seat before they were approached by one of the older female staff members.
“Is that little Willa Hanson?” she cooed.
“It is,” Taylor kept his voice high for her sake, though he was wary.
“And where’s Mom today? We were expecting to see her here.”
“She got caught up with work,” Taylor offered, calming already.
“Oh well. Daddy will do, won’t he?” the nurse mused, taking the toy Willa offered her before handing it back to Taylor.
“Thanks,” he smirked, setting it aside.
A moment before Willa reached for it again and he had to hand it back.
“You be good for Doctor Fenton,” the nurse tapped her on the nose, “bye Daddy.”
“Bye,” Taylor smiled after her as she left.
He heard her telling someone that she was going on a lunch break before she disappeared from sight.
The timing wasn’t too bad, as Willa was just starting to get restless when Dr Fenton appeared and called her name. Glad they hadn’t had to wait too long Taylor collected her stuff and headed into his office.
“Taylor, what a pleasant surprise,” the doctor greeted, “it’s been a long time.”
“It has, I know,” Taylor agreed as the door was closed behind them and he set Willa on the bed.
“You should really come for a check-up yourself, you know.”
“I know, but I’m doing okay,” Taylor assured, “and today’s all about Willa.”
“Oh yes,” the Doctor smiled in her direction before stepping over to the small bar fridge beside his desk and selecting the appropriate needle, “let’s get this out of the way, shall we?”