It’s the middle of the afternoon when Nicholas comes down to Andrew’s office. Jacob is sitting astride his hip, a sheet of paper in his tiny hands. His cheeks, round with baby fat, are brightly pink, his hair still damp from a bath. Andrew’s instinctive smile at seeing his son widens a little more when Jacob babbles something at him in which ‘daddy’ is the most recognizable word.
“Finger painting?” Andrew asks, taking the sheet Jacob is waving at him.
Brightly colored handprints, blobs and smears are spread over the paper. It’ll have a place of honor on the wall behind Andrew’s desk.
“The next Picasso,” Nicholas says. “On his way to get a nap.”
He holds Jacob down to Andrew for a kiss to the forehead and quick hug. As he hoists Jacob up on his hip again, Andrew opens his mouth – but finally says nothing as Nicholas takes Jacob back upstairs and merely grins to himself.
He wonders how long it’ll take Nicholas to realize there’s a blue streak of paint across his cheek.