So I looked up a recipe I’ll never use

“Have fun at grandpa’s?” he asked his daughter as she ran up and hugged him.

“Yes!”

Considering how long it had taken him to get along with his father, he admitted to being a bit jealous how quickly she had taken to him. “What did you do?”

“We made cookies!”

He almost blanched. “You… you what?”

“Cookies!” She gave him a look as though she expected better of him. “I brought you some! We can eat them now. You don’t think mom will be jealous, do you?”

“Mom knows she’s not the only person to bake cookies.” However, the realization that his father could bake would probably give his wife pause too. “Are they any good?”

“Dad!” his daughter protested. Shaking her head, she pulled a plastic bag filled with cookies out of her backpack and handed him one. “I made them too.”

“Of course.” He chuckled, taking it. “You save just about everything.”

“Did grandpa not bake with you?”

He took a bite from the cookie. It tasted surprising, he couldn’t recognize what type it was at all. He wouldn’t compare it to his wife’s baking, but that was for his own safety. “Must be a new hobby.” Then the kick came in. “What is it?”

“Zucchini and jalapeño.”

He coughed. “Pretty good.”

She smiled. While he was glad for her, he wondered if his father had decided to make this with the express knowledge that his granddaughter would not hesitate with giving plenty of them to her father.

The first time

“Wait!”

They reached out, hoping he wouldn’t leave them behind. Despite reaching forward, they expected to feel air. Not his hand.

He smiled at them. “Hurry up! We’ll miss out on cookies if we take too long. My mom’s only so patient.”

Unable to process the fact they had a warm hand in hand, they stared at him. No one had done this before. Yet he hadn’t hesitated. They didn’t know what to do.

He blinked. “What’s wrong?”

They flushed. “N-nothing! You said cookies, let’s go.”

Together, the two walked up to his house.