Imagine: The List
Fic posted by members of Vo's Imaginings YahooGroup
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Story Notes:
Second in my baby Xander in Chicago series. Follows Due South Childhood fic.
Author's Chapter Notes:

AN: Takes place before the fast forward in Chapter sixteen of my Due South Childhood fic. I wanted to go into more depth in the renovations but the chapter would have been as long as the actual story. Since people asked to see what happened during the renovations, I'm writing it as a separate story.


Ray ushers the Vecchio family out of the house before locking it up and putting Alex's carrier in the back seat. The material he'd picked up at the home improvement store and measurements for the rooms Tony had written up tucked firmly into the side pocket of Alex's diaper bag. Maria would be putting the pictures she'd taken of the house on the computer when she got home to send to Ray so Benton and Renny could see how things were going. She'd suggested creating a website and putting them up online, a notion Ray had vetoed immediately. But knowing the Vecchio stubbornness, she'd be doing it anyway. And it would allow Renny's brothers and sisters to see his new house. Sighing, he pulls out his phone and dials Maria's number.




"I already have the website," Maria says with a chuckle as they walk into the Vecchio house. She knew Ray would be calling sooner or later, once he worked everything out in his head. "Only friends and family will get the url. It will be fine, Ray." she laughs as she hears the sound of him banging his head on the steering wheel. "Go home, go over flooring choices, and let your guys pamper you." She shuts off her phone and exchanges an amused look with her mother


Ray growls something irritated in Italian that would have had Ma Vecchio threatening to wash his mouth out with soap as he turns the engine on and pulls out of the driveway. Alex babbling in the back seat makes him smile as they pull up at a stop light. "It doesn't pay to argue with women, kid." He swears the baby is giving him a 'duh' look as the light turns green.


Benton looks up when the door opens and Ray comes in with Alex's carseat. Renny automatically takes his jacket from him, moving to hang it up as Ray takes the baby out of the car seat, changing his diaper and putting him in the playpen as Benton continues to prepare dinner in the kitchen.


"Don't take that away, Renny, I got brochures from the store of different flooring options. And paint samples so we can decide what we want to paint the upstairs rooms. Tony and I ripped the carpeting out of the two rooms that we decided couldn't be cleaned."


"Have the workers started on the repairs yet?"


"Not till next week, they'll work on the roof first then the kitchen. I want to see what it would cost to redo the master bathroom if we do the demolition ourselves."


"Did M . ..Ma and my mother finally break down and inspect the master bedroom?" Renny had been wondering how long it would take them to go inside.


"Yeah, your Ma agrees you'd never fit in the old shower so it has to go. We can get rid of that old vanity and have room for two sinks." Ray brings out the sketch they'd been working on out, showing his lovers everything as Xander coos at the teddy bear Renny's father had brought his newest grandson.


"What are you replacing the carpeting with in the master bathroom, tile?" Benton asks.


"Yeah, I got brochures for that too." Ray digs through the materials Renny pulled out of the pocket, pulling out the brochure and handing it to the others. "I figured we'd decide what tile to put in the other bathrooms at the same time."


"When do we plan on painting?"


"This weekend, so we want to make the final decisions soon so Tony and I can go pick up the paint and have it waiting for us."


The three men go over flooring and paint choices most of the night, thankfully all three are off the next morning. Alex had long been fed, bathed, and put to bed in his crib before they crawl into their own bed, kissing each other goodnight before falling asleep wrapped in each others arms.


The next morning finds all three of them getting out of the car at the new house. This is the first time Benton and Renny had seen the house, but they trust Ray's judgment on matters such as this. Walking through the open front door, they look around and nod. Ray had found them the perfect house.


"Renny, there's a good spot out back for a garden next year, I know you've missed being able to grow things." Renny smiles and walks out back, looking around and nodding as he comes back in. Dief pushes his way past them and woofs, heading into each room to investigate what's going on. "Tony, you busy?" Ray calls up the stairs.


"Nah, just tearing up the floors to check joists." Tony comes to the head of the stairs. "Watcha need?"


"I'm going to go order the paint, the guy I talked to yesterday said they should have everything in stock. We'll need your truck to carry everything." Tony nods and wipes his hands on a rag.


"What do you need us to do?" Renny asks as Tony comes down the stairs.


"Go help Ma and your mother, they're emptying closets to take any clothes that are still good to the nuns." Tony says, heading out the door with Ray. They get in Tony's truck as Renny and Benton go upstairs, Dief trotting in front of them and woofing as he noses through an open door.


"Good morning, Diefenbaker." Sophia says, rubbing his head as he comes up next to her. "Good morning boys." she says, looking up when Renny and Benton come into the room. "Where is Ray?"


"He went to get the paint with Tony."


"Ahh, that is good, I was wondering when you had planned on painting."


"Ray said this weekend, I thought I'd go get some used clothes to the second hand store to protect our clothes." Renny says. "Tony says you are going through the clothes to donate?"


Ma Vecchio murmurs something in Italian, probably about the ungrateful heirs that didn't want their mother's belongings. While Mrs. Renfield might not have understood what Ma was saying, you could tell she agreed with her one hundred and ten percent. "Yes, Maria took the first load of clothes to the nuns for us." Ma says as Renny inspects the master bathroom. Marsha watches her son give the shower stall a dubious look in the mirror, but the old cast iron tub is big enough for him to stretch out and relax.


Ray returns sooner than they had imagined and everybody looks up at him. "They didn't have enough paint, we have to go back in a couple of hours to pick it up, but we got the brushes, drop clothes, and primer. We had to buy more than we planned, they think it's going to take two coats with the primer to cover everything. I ordered the flooring while we were there. Sears has the washer and dryer I want on sale this week, I'll run and check them out, see if the sale price beats the discount I get through Tony's connections."



“Take this load of clothes with you.” Sophia says absently, rocking Xander in her arms. “And hurry back, the contractor says he will be here shortly to give you the estimate on the master bathroom.”

Ray heads out the door, tossing the bag of clothes in the passenger seat and pulling out of the driveway. One of the nuns from the church the Vecchio's attend is waiting outside for him, taking the bag with a smile. “Thank Mrs. Vecchio for me, would you Detective Kowalski?”

“Do you need any dress clothes, Sister? My ex-wife had a closet full of them and I'd like them to go to somebody who could use them.”

“Oh yes, Detective, that would be splendid. We have a program to give dress clothes to men and women for job interviews.”

“Good, then I'll go through them, or better yet have Ma go through them since she can tell what's good better than I can, and have somebody bring them around.”

“You and your late ex-wife will be in our prayers, Detective.” She says, heading back into the church. She doesn't see the amused look that crosses Ray's face before he puts the car into gear. Luckily, there's a mall only a couple of blocks away that has a Sears store, he can quickly run in and get a price from them including tax and delivery costs and still get back before the contractor arrives. He hopes.



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