“Which daughter?” Liam asked. He gulped and glanced at Lyle.
“How many of them are you concerned about… Liam?” Levi’s menacing whisper was fiercer than his shout.
“Uh… well, uh.”
“I’ll put you out of your misery, son,” Levi said. “Miriam’s eight weeks pregnant.”
Lyle whimpered and lowered his head into his hands. All eyes shifted to the second oldest.
Nick couldn’t fathom how his brother must be feeling right now. He would never put himself in that position. He would never put a lady in that position. He would never put his mother and father in that position.
He glanced at his mother, whose head was held high despite the tears gathering at the corners of her eyes. Her hand rested on her baby, due to be born in four months.
“I guess we’ll go tomorrow to get you fitted for a tux.” Levi glared at Lyle as he stabbed his fork into the filet on the plate in front of him. He picked up his steak knife and calmly sliced a thin piece and lifted the fork to his mouth. He hesitated as Lyle spoke.
“A tux?” Lyle sounded as if he was choking or fighting tears maybe.
“Daniel and I always hoped one of my sons would marry one of his daughters. Kinda thought it would be Nick and Adele for a while there.” Levi glanced at Nick, with a pointed expression. “This wasn’t exactly what we had envisioned, but Daniel and his family will be here by the end of the week.”
“The end of the week?” Lyle’s voice squeaked.
“Do you have a problem with that, son?” They didn’t exactly live in a society of arranged marriages, but sometimes when two patriarchs insisted on certain standards, their adult children were expected to follow them.
“No, sir.” Lyle stood and pushed back his chair. “If you’ll excuse me. I need a moment.” Before leaving the room, Lyle stopped at the beverage cart and lifted a decanter of bourbon. He didn’t bother with a glass.
Nick didn’t see him again for two days.