Thanksgiving Dinner

by Lauren

We open with a shot of the Dolenz house, fully decked out with Christmas decorations... except that it's Thanksiving. We move inside where we see more Christmas decorations, but now we see some Thanksgiving ones as well.

We move to the kitchen where we see Emma, Lauren... and Micky working on the food.

Emma turned to Lauren, conspiratorily and whispered, "You're still sure it's a good idea to let him cook the turkey after what happened last year?"

Lauren nodded. "I made him promise to stick to the instructions and if he strays, the consequences won't be very nice."

"Hey!" The two young women turned to Micky, who had his fists planted on his hips. "I can HEAR you over here, you know!"

"Sorry, Mick," Lauren said, snickering a bit.

"Just bad memories, that's all, Micky," Emma said.

"I apologized profusely for that AND got us over to mom's so it was not that bad," Micky said with a huff.

"Yes, you did," Lauren agreed. "Go back to the turkey, Mick, we've got other dishes to take care of still."

Micky turned back to the oven, muttering.

Lauren glanced at him, then turned to Emma and motioned for her to follow. They went into what was usually the dining room... except for when everyone was over and the large table was brought out to the lanai. The dining room had two smaller tables set up, one with the desserts and the other held any extra items like silverware and dishes.

"I thought you said he's been better lately. He seems a little short today..." Emma said.

"He has been better," Lauren said. "I don't think he realizes that he seems annoyed, though. I think he just wants to make up for messing up your turkey last year."

"We found you, mommy!"

They turned to find the twins, Katie, and Jordan in the doorway.

Little Mick moved to Lauren. "Now, we'll hide and you find US!"

Lauren chuckled. "I'm sorry, kids, but we aren't playing, we just had to talk for a minute."

Shelly came up next to Mick. "We saw daddy in the kitchen by himself and he said you were playing hide and seek because one minute you were there and the next you weren't."

Emma grinned. "We'll play hide and seek later. Weren't you watching the parade?"

Little Mick slapped his forehead. "We're missing the parade! C'mon!" All four kids ran back to the living room.

"Shelly and Mick are getting to be something else," Emma commented.

Lauren winked. "If you figure out what that something else is, let me know and I'll get them cured of it."

The two women laughed as they headed back to the kitchen, walking briefly through the living room. They waved at the others. Peter and Valerie were on the couch, with Davy and Daphne next to them. Mike sat in the easy chair, with his feet up, holding a sleeping baby Robbie in one arm.

Little Mick snatched the remote from the arm of Mike's chair and turned the channel.

"Mick, I was watching the game!" Mike argued, quietly, so as to not wake the sleeping baby.

The little boy spun to face him. "But you didn't tell us the parade was on!" His lower lip quivered in a familiar "I want to get my way" look.

Mike sighed, settling back again. "You take after your old man WAY too much, kiddo."

Mick's face split into a wide grin. "Thank you, Uncle Mike!"

The four older kids plunked down on the floor behind Lizzie and Leah, who were playing with blocks, not paying attention to what was on the TV.

Davy chuckled as a dozing Daphne snuggled into him. He glanced around her at Mike. "The kids really know your number, Mike."

"It's a holiday and I got Robbie in my arms. I have no choice. Em said I had to behave or else," Mike replied, sighing.

"When do we eat? It's almost two o'clock," Peter said.

"First, we have to know when to set the table. Lauren said she'd let us know when to do that," Valerie added.

"I'm still worried about Mick being in the kitchen," Mike said.

"Lauren said she'd keep an eye on him," Davy stated.

Almost as if on cue, Micky stepped out of the kitchen and came up behind the couch. "The kids got the parade on, huh?"

Mike nodded. "Mick used your quivering lip routine. Before he changed the channel, the 49ers were ahead by a touchdown."

"Close game," Micky commented, then leaned against the back of the couch.

"What's up, Mick? You haven't been out of the kitchen all morning," Davy said, looking behind him.

"Turkey's almost done." Micky turned to Peter and Valerie. "They said you can start setting the table."

"Thank you, Micky," Valerie said with a nod, then she and Peter headed out to the lanai to set the table.

"And...?" Mike said.

Micky gave a slight shrug. "They keep muttering about me. I finally said something... then they disappeared into the dining room."

"I saw them go in there. I thought they were checking on the desserts to make sure we didn't snitch," Mike said.

"You didn't snap at them, did you, mate?" Davy asked, bluntly.

Micky put his index finger and thumb close together. "Maybe a little."

Mike rolled his eyes.

Davy shook his head. "You've gotten better, Mick, but you're still a little snappy."

Micky leaned his elbows on the back of the couch and put his chin in his palms. "And I'm trying so hard, too. Actually, I'm just glad I don't need a straight jacket after this year."

"That's something to be thankful for, Mick," Mike said.

"And that we're all alive and well," Davy added.

"Albeit a little testy," Micky said, with a smirk.

Lauren came out of the kitchen. "We're ready, guys. Mick, I think the turkey's done."

"Great, I'll pull it out," Micky said, with a nod, then disappeared into the kitchen.

Mike put the easy chair back down and readjusted Robbie in his arms. "Hey, Laur?"

"Yeah, Mike?" she responded.

"Mick's trying real hard," Mike said.

Lauren smiled, then nodded. "I'm trying to remember that, thank you, Mike."

Davy shook Daphne. "Wake up, luv, dinner's on."

Daphne grinned, looking a little sleepy. "Good! I'm starving!" They each picked up either Lizzie or Leah and had the other kids follow them out to the lanai. Mike followed them, as Lauren went back into the kitchen.

"Em started taking dishes out to the table," Micky told her, leaning against the oven door.

Lauren walked over and pulled him down to kiss his cheek.

"Not that I'm complaining, but what was that for?" Micky asked.

"For putting up with me and Em all morning," Lauren said, grinning.

"Hmm, I don't know, I think I deserve more than just a kiss on the cheek." Micky gave her a wink.

"Please, not before we eat!" Emma exclaimed coming back into the kitchen.

Micky laughed as Lauren blushed and chuckled a bit. Lauren grabbed more dishes and headed out as Micky pulled the turkey out. He set it on top of the stove, checked then pulled out the meat thermometer, and nodded. He grabbed the large serving platter and carefully used two large knives to lift the turkey out of the pan and placed it on the platter. He then grabbed two pot holders and gripped the platter.

Out in the lanai, the kids had their own smaller table, while the adults were at the main large table. Everyone was already seated as Micky entered with the turkey. As if on cue, everyone "ooooh'ed" over it.

Micky gave a grin. "Very funny, you guys." He set the platter down, then started to reach for the ccarving knife.

"Should we really let him use such a large knife?" Mike asked, leaning his chin in one palm, a smirk on his face.

"Do you wanna pick it apart with your fingers?" Micky retorted, also smirking.

"Doesn't matter to me as long as you start passing it around!" Davy exclaimed.

Peter grinned, loading up on the veggies. "Makes me glad I don't have to wait for it."

"No, but we are saying grace," Micky said, turning his gaze from Peter to Mike, "and I don't wanna hear anytcomplaints."

Mike put his hands up. "It's your home, Mick. Do what you want."

Micky smiled. "Thank you." He proceeded to carve the turkey and pass it around.