Pete and Kao have reincarnated into humans after serving as the devil and angel decision-makers. They met in the high school as rivals. Pete loved to bully Kao but as they grew up and took the same course in college. They realized their true feelings for each other from all the bickering they did.
Their path was not the one with rose petals but they plucked out the thorns together and fought for their love. Pete proposed Kao after getting a promotion to a better position in a company. Kao was ready to settle with his stable job as a university professor.
Two years into their marriage, Kao completed his Ph.D. and Pete became the CEO of ocean electronics. They were happy, Pete was the same as ever with his insatiable sex drives but Kao was now used to them. They took a bigger house but suddenly it felt empty with only two adults.
"Should we adopt a kid?", Pete asked one night when Kao had big spooned him. Kao brushed his hair looked down at his man.
"Are we ready for that kind of responsibility, Pete?"
"You don't want to share me, uh, Kao?", Pete shook his head tickling Kao with his hair.
"Let's think about it for a while.", Kao held his husband in his embrace tightly to stop him from tickling.
"But should we adopt a girl or a boy?", Pete asked after a while.
"Let's think about that later na, Pete."
"It's a girl then.", Pete didn't get any answer for a while, and just when he was about to enter his dreamland, Kao murmured,
"Girl it is."
"What should we name her?", Pete asked looking at a 3-year-old playing with other kids in the orphanage.
"Son of the sun?"
"Sun of our life."
"I like that"
"Tu", the caretaker called her. She looked up from playing blocks she saw to-be parents waving at her and broke into a big smile to wave bac
"Por.", she greeted them with a formal wai.
"You can call us daddy, papa, por or phi, whatever you are comfortable with, okay?", Kao hugged her kneeling to her level.
"Let's give some gifts to your friends here before going home?", Pete too kneeled.
"Our home Tu."
"Let me say bye to my friends first."
"Tu Tawan, come here this instant!", Kao called his daughter sternly. It had been a year they adopted her and she had settled in well with them. Kao was a little strict towards discipline and Pete was the one who spoiled the child rotten.
"Yes, Papa?", she looked at him with doe eyes, a trick which always works on Pete.
"Ugh, those doe eyes don't work on me, girly. Clean up the toys in the living room right now."
She pouted at him making a face as soon as he turned around and quickly started collecting her toys to stack them in the box. Pete joined her and helped to clean the mess. He did funny faces to make her laugh as they worked. Kao heard the giggling from the living room and smiled to himself.
"Should we tease Papa a little?", Pete whispered naughtily.
Tu bobbed her head excitedly and they tip-toed to the kitchen without making a noise. Pete held his finger on his lips to tell her to keep quiet and he moved behind Kao. He held Kao by his waist and picked him up easily. He took him to the living room for Tu's amusement and Kao's annoyance.
"Where are we going, Papa?", 7-year-old Tu asked closing the door of the car.
"We are going shopping.", Kao grinned at her and settled in the driving seat.
Four years had passed and Tu had comfortably settled in their family. The first couple of years Tu felt her Papa didn't love her but as she grew and saw how Kao listened to her every complaint about the school or stayed with her the nights she was sick or let her sleep with them even when her daddy complained and sung them a lullaby for both of them to sleep.
Tu stared at her Papa as he hummed the tune on the radio. She could see the tiredness under his eyes too but he couldn't help but watch. She saw him pull outside a takeaway from her favorite burger joint and placed an order of her favorite meal without asking her made her heart swell. They took the parcels and drove to the nearest mall as they munched on fries together.
They ate the food in the car and Kao wiped the corner of her mouth before they exited the car. They walked towards the boutique to buy her birthday dress. They made their way to the kid's section and browsed for princess dresses. Kao chose a few and asked the assistant to help her. She came out wearing a powder blue dress with straps that landed at her ankles. She twirled for him and he shook his head. The next dress was a white gown with puffy sleeves and a hairband with a short net.
Kao stared at his little girl shocked, he suddenly had tears in his eyes imagining her walking down the aisle one day to another man.
"Papa?", she came forward tentatively and wiped his tears as he was on his knees in front of her. She had never actually seen her either father cry so she felt a little scared when she saw the tears. Kao wrapped his arms around her and hugged her tightly.
"Not so early, baby girl, not now.", he whispered.
"Okay", she said walked back in.
Kao collected himself in the meantime and wiped his face. They tried a couple of more dresses after finally deciding on a lavender-colored one that fell right above her ankles. They bought the dress and left it for alterations till the big day.
The big was only a week away now and the parents were busy juggling their work responsibilities and preparations. This caused a lot of bickering between the two.
"Pete! I had told you to buy just one thing from the store and yet you forgot?"
"I was very tired Kao, please cut me some slack."
"How am I suppose to make dinner without it?"
"Ugh, give it like that you know we love whatever you make.", Pete winked at his daughter playfully as she looked at them worried.
"Its the main ingredient, Pete, go get now!"
"Are you kidding me?"
"No, I'm serious."
"Come one, I'm tired naa?"
"Whose fault is it that they forgot?"
"Fine, I'm going."
"Pete, can you pick Tu today?"
A few hours later, the school calls Kao,
"Please pick Tu from school, she is waiting for a while now."
"Ugh Pete!!", Kao ruffled his hair in frustration but left almost immediately. He picked Tu and took her with him to the university. Kao was so busy cursing Pete in his mind to notice a very upset Tu in the university. She calmed down as the other professor dropped by to ask about her or talk to her while her Papa worked. She even saw Kao getting an earful from Dean and her anger rose again.
It was two days before the big day when a fight broke out. It was 10:30 pm and Tu was completing her homework when she heard voices. She tip-toed outside and heard her father squabbling.
"Pete, I just asked you to do a simple thing, is it so hard to get it done?"
"I forget, Kao, I was busy in the office and it slipped out of my mind, please be a little understanding na?"
"Am I not understanding enough? For god's sake, I take our daughter to school, pick her up, do all the chores and yet you want me to be more understanding when I just give you one job?"
"Hey, even I do the house chores, stop saying as if I don't do anything."
"I just told you to pick the dress on the way from the mall and yet you made such a fuss out of it!"
"We have two days, Kao, calm down."
"Enough.", Tu said softly looking at her parents with tear-filled eyes.
"There are many other things to be done yet and we can't waste-"
"Stop it!", Tu shouted.
They snapped their heads to the open door. Kao had a bewildered expression whereas Pete was looking at her guiltily. Kao walked to her slowly and kneeled in front of her.
"Sorry, you had to see that-"
"I want you to go."
"Baby, Papa was-"
"Just go, I don't want to see you.". Tu said sobbing.
The world came crashing down for Kao after hearing that, his brain went into a flashback. Images of a girl crying and then falling asleep after fighting with her mother passed by like a picture. He suddenly felt a sense of guilt and anguish wash over him. He stood up and walked out of the room.
"Tu Tawan! That was not the right way to talk to your father.", Pete who was observing them shell shocked spoke for the first time. He too had the sense of deja vu that this had happened before somewhere but in his mind, he could see Kao blaming him for everything. He was about to Kao but then he saw Tu sitting on the bed with an equally shocked expression.
Pete was torn between running behind his husband and talking with his daughter. Just then his phone dinged with a message.
"Talk to her, I'll be back later.", Pete sighed and sat beside his daughter.
"What happened Tu?", he asked her.
"I felt angry at Papa."
"Why? Did he say something to upset you?"
"Then, did something happen at school?"
"Are you angry because I forgot to get the dress?"
"It's just my brain told me to be angry."
I stared at her for a few moments waiting for her to continue,
"I saw Papa that, he looked tired and he even got scolded because he was late. I just remembered the last few weeks of him running around all day. I just felt angry at him for doing that.", and she started sobbing.
Pete held her close understanding, "He just does that out of love, you know that right?"
"Yes", her sobs grew louder.
"Is there anything else?"
"Daddy, I'm scared."
"What are you scared of baby?"
"That one day Papa will leave us."
"Where did you get that idea from?"
"I-I had these dream", she sniffled, "Of Papa leaving."
Pete nodded, "I told him to", sniffles, "so I don't have to see him go later."
He held her close and whispered rubbing his hand down her back to calm her down.,
"He is never going to leave baby."
"Are you sure?"
"I know your Papa since college, we bicker, we fight, we cry but we always end up together."
"Okay.", her cried had started to die down to sniffles
"Come on, let me put you to bed.", he picked her up and carried her back to her room
"I'll go look for him after you sleep, so now, I'll tuck you nice and tight, okay?"
"Daddy?", she called out as Pete was about to move away.
"It's okay baby, we all have our days."
"Even you feel this?"
Pete sits on the edge of the bed and pulls the sheet to her chin, "Sometimes baby, but you know what gets me back home?"
"You and your Papa."
"Now go to sleep. We will make something delicious for Papa tomorrow."
Pete walked out of the bedroom after kissing their daughter on the forehead and switching off the lights. He quickly dropped a text to his husband which he doesn't get a response.
He grabbed a jacket to look out for Kao at night but as soon as he opens the door, he sees the person he was worried about sitting on the front steps. He was holding his knees clothes and resting his head on them. Pete sat beside him and wrapped his arm around his husband.
"Did she sleep?", he asked in a hoarse voice from crying.
They sat in silence except for small sniffles from Kao. Pete held his husband tightly as he broke down again.
"Where"(sniffle) "Did I go wrong?", he asked sniffling
"It's. not your fault Kao."
"I'm a really bad father, I don't deserve this family."
"Will you stop, that enough.", Pete said sternly.
Kao looked at his husband with tearful eyes.
"Tell me what exactly happened"
"I got a flashback of a similar scene with a girl crying on the bed and I was feeling guilty for something. I might have done something wrong."
"Even you got it?", Pete was in deep thought.
"Wait, you mean even Tu?"
"Yes, she was actually scared that you are going to leave us sooner or later and that's why she acted on impulse."
"God No!!", his start welling up again.
"Hey, I know you are not leaving.", Pete pulled him into a hug. They sat there till Kao sobbed softly.
"Can we take a walk?", he asked after calming down.
"Sure.", Pete has no choice but to comply. Pete started talking about how they got Tu home. Every corner of the house had a special memory after that.
It was late into the night when they returned where they started: right outside their house.
"I can't leave, Pete, even if I wanted to.", Pete wanted to say something but Kao continued, "I sat here because I had nowhere to go. Mae lives tot far and Gift ever farther away."
"I can't trouble with our problems."
"I'm glad you were here. I was worried about where to look for you... and Kao."
"I'm sorry too, I have been burdening you with all the parental responsibilities when this was our feat and we chose it together."
"It's okay Pete, I understand you were busy, I should have-"
"No, I heard that the Dean gave you an earful for leaving the university early."
"He was upset over something else and we were having a discussion, Tu might have misunderstood it."
"Should I drop you off tomorrow, maybe show that Dean some punches just like good old days?"
"No, I want to work there for a long time.", Kao chuckled at his husband's sweet gesture.
"Let's go home."
They walked in as softly as possible but it was impossible not to be caught by someone. Tu heard them whispering outside her door. Suddenly the door opened and she closed her eyes shut. The familiar scent of her Papa enveloped her as he pulled up her duvet which she had kicked away in guilt and frustration. She had the urge to open her eyes and look but then she heard a sniffle. It broke her heart listening to them but she stayed put controlling.
"Kao?", her daddy called her Papa.
"Coming.", he shuffled around, and then she heard a whisper followed by a slight brushing of her hair, "Papa loves his Princess."
Tu finally fell asleep knowing her fathers were back.
The next morning, Pete and Tu had decided to make breakfast for Kao who was a little sick from worrying all night. They had reached the bedroom door and saw Kao leaning on the headboard.
"Daddy, can you take this alone?", Tu asked nervously.
"Why, we made it together so let's give it together."
"I don't feel like facing him yet.", Tu admitted sadly, "I feel guilty for saying that."
"Tu baby, you should tell him for him to understand you."
They stared at the closed door till the person inside got impatient and called them in,
"Are you guys going to stand there forever now?"
Tu walked in and set the tray on the bed without looking at him.
"Tu?", he opened his arms for which she gladly walked into.
"I'm sorry Papa, I didn't mean that.", her muffled voice was heard.
"I know that Princess.", he placed a chaste kiss on her head, "but next time just talk me about it, okay?"
She nodded and settled beside him as they enjoyed the breakfast in bed before leaving for their respective works.