I was still lying in my bed trying to collect my thoughts two minutes later when she reappeared in the doorway, naked but carrying a bundle of clothes. Apparently her nudity bothered her as little as she claimed. I decided, perhaps against my better judgment, that I wouldn't let it bother me either. We were family, after all, and she did have the cutest little body. As long as I didn't cross any lines, there was nothing wrong with it.
She set part of the clothes on the floor, then unfolded the rest, which consisted of a bright red blouse with a long, white skirt. She held them up against her chest and thighs.
"Which should I wear today, Daddy?" she asked.
"I think you should wear both the top and the bottom," I joked.
"You didn't let me finish," she giggled, setting the clothes on the floor and picking up the others. These were a pastel blue tank top with a pair of denim shorts. She also held these against her body to give me an idea of how they looked.
"Do you like this outfit or the other one better?" she asked.
"Honestly, I have no eye for fashion."
"But which one do you think looks prettier on me?"
"Truthfully, you could wear a burlap sack and make it look pretty," I smiled.
She laughed. "Well, I don't have a burlap sack to wear, but if you like the idea that much, maybe you can buy me one."
I really liked to see her in good humor like this. When I thought about how little she had had to laugh about until now, it made me feel good.
"I don't think I'll buy you a burlap sack, but if you promise you won't get it into your head that I'm a bottomless fountain of money, I'd really like to spoil you a little. I want to buy you some nice things if it's okay with you."
"Oh thank you, Daddy!" she exclaimed with a grin, then dropped the clothes in her hand and skipped over to give me a hug. It was a little awkward considering that we were both still nude, but it felt so nice that I didn't have the heart to tell her that it wasn't appropriate.
She kissed me on the cheek then, then headed back to the clothes lying on the floor. She asked me again which she should wear, and I suggested the shorts. Truth be told, it was because she had absolutely gorgeous legs, and the skirt would be too long to show them, not to mention that the tank top would leave quite a bit more of her upper body uncovered than the blouse.
She headed back out of my bedroom, giving me a chance to get up and dress myself. I wore a casual pair of slacks, and a lightweight, button-down shirt, similar to what I usually wore every day.
Normally I jogged on the treadmill then lifted weights for a while every morning, but considering that I planned to take my new daughter all over town today, I figured the walking we would do would be enough exercise for the day, so I decided to forgo the ritual. Besides, that would leave Kimmy without anything to do while she waited for me.
I was finishing shaving in the bathroom when she appeared in the doorway wearing the outfit I had suggested and a smile. She leaned in and wrapped her arms around me, and I slipped my free arm over her shoulder. We held that position until I finished, then we headed back out to the front room.
"I think I'll move the equipment out of my workout room into the den," I said. "That will free up a room for you to sleep in. You can have the bathroom at the end of the hall. I hardly ever use it, so it should be pretty clean. If you'll do me a favor and help me move my equipment, we'll get your room all ready for you. There are some coat hangers in the closet, but no dresser yet. That will be one of the things I'll buy you today."
"It sounds perfect," she smiled.
We set to work cleaning up her room then. It took both of us to move the treadmill, since it was so heavy. There was just enough room in the den for it after a little rearranging. Then we carried the free weights over. I took two at a time, while Kimmy had to grip one of the others with both hands. When I offered to help, she insisted that she was strong enough, so I merely watched to make sure she didn't hurt herself. There were six of the weights in total, so we repeated the process and got them all moved over.
I decided to leave the television where it was; there was already a large screen TV in the living room, and she might enjoy having one in her bedroom. I made her promise not to spend all day in front of it, playfully joking that it would turn her into a zombie and the last thing I needed was to wake up one night to find her shuffling into my room to eat my brains.
There was also a tall yet thin bookcase taking up space in her bedroom that would be needed for her dresser, and this proved quite a task to move. We took out all of the books, carefully stacking them on the floor in the right order to be able to replace them later, then maneuvered the bookcase out the door. There was no room left in the den, but we found a perfect spot for it in the hall. Then we returned to the room to pick up the books.
As Kimmy bent over to pick up a stack, the suggestion that she wear a tank top paid off. It was just loose enough that I could peer down the neckline to her gorgeous, bra-covered tits. Though I had already seen them in all their glory, this voyeuristic view of them half-hidden like this had a certain naughtiness that felt particularly arousing. I tried not to look, but each time she bent over I couldn't help but take a peek.
Once we finished, we headed out to the front room and plopped down on the couch, resting for a while before our shopping trip. Kimmy scooted in next to me and leaned her head against my arm, as it was too low to reach my shoulder.
Impulsively, I put my hands under her arms and scooped her up to place her on my lap, where she giggled and lay her head down on my chest. I wrapped my arms around her and held her like that for a while.
"Daddy?" she asked.
"Am I a nuisance to you?"
"Of course not," I insisted. "Whatever gave you that idea?"
"Because I made you move all those things into your den, and now you have to spend money on me buying me a bed and a dresser."
"And what else would I spend my money on?" I grinned. "I've got too much of it as it is. I've been looking for ways to use it."
She laughed. "Sure you have," she said.
"But honestly, it's been a long time since I've had something worth working for. I haven't really had much meaning in my life for a while. But now I have a goal."
"Making you happy," I told her.
Her eyes began to well up with tears. "Really, Daddy?" she asked.
She broke down into tears then, throwing her arms around me and burying her face in my chest. I could feel the moisture seeping through my shirt, but I didn't mind. I hated to see Kimmy cry, but these were tears of joy.
"I said you're the most important person in my life, and I mean it," I told her, stroking her hair. "All I want to do is make you happy, whatever it takes. If that means spending money, then I'm happy to do it. If it means devoting all of my time to you, then I don't mind that either, especially since I enjoy your company so much. So let's have no nonsense about thinking you're a nuisance to me, okay?"
"Okay," she whispered, turning her head again and pressing her cheek against my chest. I reached up and wiped away the moisture from her other cheek, then wrapped my arms around her and held her to me again. Impulsively I kissed her on the forehead, and she sighed with a smile on her cute little lips.
We sat there for a few minutes longer, then got up and headed out to the car. While the stated purpose of our excursion today was to buy some furniture and clothes for her, I wanted to make it a father-daughter bonding activity as well.
There was a nice furniture store in town, run by a local family; I remembered visiting it when I first moved to my current home, and it seemed to have a pleasant atmosphere and reasonable prices. True, we could have gone to a department store instead and saved some time since I planned to buy more than just furniture for Kimmy today, but the whole point of the outing was to spend as much time as possible together. When we stepped onto the showroom, a friendly young saleswoman immediately greeted us. I explained that we were looking for a bed for Kimmy, and she began to show us several models.
Kimmy had a wonderful time trying them all out, lying down on them and even bouncing a little. She grinned and giggled as she rolled around on them, and I couldn't help smiling myself at her amusement. At thirteen, perhaps she was just a little too old to be having that much fun, but I couldn't fault her. After what she had been through for most of her life, she deserved a little childlike amusement. Truth be told, I almost felt like joining her myself.
We decided on a nice, soft bed with a hideaway bookcase embedded in the headboard with oak paneling and an elegant rose motif on the sheets and blankets. It was perhaps a little more expensive than I had intended, but Kimmy seemed to want it so bad that I didn't have the heart to tell her no. Besides, a smile and a hug from her made it well worth the cost.
We then searched for a dresser for her clothes. Vanessa, the saleswoman, was also helpful here, suggesting several different models. We settled on a simple, four-drawer dresser with a vanity mirror on top, large enough for all of the clothes that I planned to buy Kimmy, but small enough to fit nicely in the corner of her bedroom.
I had to pay extra to have the items delivered, but I didn't mind; that would avoid a lot of hassle and free up some time to spend with my daughter. Vanessa said that since it was still early in the day when I purchased them, she would have them delivered that evening, between seven and eight. That sounded perfect; Kimmy and I could eat out again and still be home in time for the delivery.
By the time we left the store, it was nearing lunch time. I knew of a good sandwich shop near the park, famous for its French dip sandwiches. My ex-girlfriend and I used to meet there for lunch sometimes. Kimmy asked, in a worried tone, if there was a chance that we might run into her there, but the two of us had parted on more or less friendly terms, so even if Kimmy and I happened to see her there, I would probably just say hi, talk with her for a minute or two, then leave.
We left the car at the park and walked to the cafe to order the sandwiches to go. Then we returned to the park and ate lunch at one of the picnic tables there.
Because I didn't want to remind Kimmy of the past, instead we talked about the future. I explained that we would need to register her at the school so that she could get her class schedule set up, and with a knowing wink I told her that I would pull some strings to make sure she was in my home room class. With that, she was suddenly very excited about starting school in the fall.
When I asked about her hobbies, she said she liked to read and watch television. Her mother usually kept her cooped up at home, cooking and cleaning, so she never went out with her friends. The few times she had snuck out and found a few moments of freedom, Becky had beaten her when she returned, so she learned her lesson.
That was when I decided that I would take her on plenty of outings. Together we would develop some hobbies that took us out of the house. Too long she had been treated like a bother and a nuisance; now she would learn that she was a human being, and her wants and desires were important.
As we were eating, Kimmy spied a group of children on the nearby merry-go-round, and when we were through she asked if I minded if she went to join them. They were a little younger than her, about seven or eight, but she apparently didn't mind, so I let her go.
Up to this point, she had always seemed a little shy and reserved, but she was apparently very good with children. She offered to push the merry-go-round for them, to which they readily agreed. Like a babysitter, or perhaps a big sister, in no time at all she became both an authority figure and playmate to them, taking charge of the games they played and even suggesting new ones.
It was wonderful to see her having so much fun. She laughed right along with the younger kids, and even when they started up a game of tag, she joined right in. Of course, being bigger and faster than them, she had to slow down to give them a sporting chance, but it was all in fun of course.
One of the kids had brought a foam rubber football and they began to toss it around. After about five minutes, one of them overthrew it and it landed at my feet. Kimmy trotted over, but instead of asking me to throw it back, she grabbed my hand and pulled me off of the bench, and before I knew it I was a part of the game too.
After an hour of that, I was too tired to continue, but the truth was that I hadn't had that much fun in years. Sure I had gone to the beach a couple of times last summer and even played some beach volleyball, but it had always been with other adults. It was nice for a change just to loosen up and act like a kid again, especially with Kimmy there with me. She had a way of bringing out the child in me.
We spent over an hour at the park playing with the children, but we still had other things to do, so reluctantly we said goodbye to our newfound friends and headed for the car.
We drove to the nearby mall so that we could shop for some clothes for her, as well as anything else she wanted, within reason. She seemed a little overwhelmed by all of the stores; apparently her mother hadn't taken her shopping much. I couldn't claim to be much of a shopper either, especially for clothes. To me, clothes were strictly utilitarian, something to keep you warm. I had a certain style that I liked, but it was common enough that I usually just ran into the store, picked up something off the rack, and left.
With Kimmy, though, shopping was fun. As soon as a friendly salesperson approached and began to help, Kimmy got into the spirit of things and started taking items into the changing room to try on. Each time she emerged, she gave a little pose and asked what I thought of the outfit. It was like my own private fashion show.
Like I told her, I thought she would look pretty wearing anything, so most of the outfits met my approval. I especially liked to see her in short skirts and tee-shirts. Then she tried on a simple but elegant dress, and I thought I had died and gone to heaven. She looked so beautiful I almost couldn't stand it. My daughter was absolutely divine.
I ended up paying a couple hundred dollars just at one store. We went to another store and I spent just as much. It was all right; seeing the look of joy on her face more than made up for the dent in my bank account.
By that time, it was getting late, so we headed back out to the car to go to dinner. There was a nice Italian restaurant nearby, one of my favorites. Kimmy and I sat and talked over plates of pasta and salad. She thanked me for being willing to spend so much money on her, and I told her that I had enjoyed myself a lot. Although I wasn't rich enough to do the same every day, I said that if we could find some less expensive activities, I'd be more than happy to take her out as often as she wanted.
Take her out? I thought. That sounds suspiciously like it's a date. But of course, that was nonsense. She was my daughter, after all.
Afterward, we stopped by an ice cream shop and I bought a couple of ice cream cones for us. "This is because sometimes I think of you as a little girl," I told Kimmy with a lighthearted smile.
After we finished eating, we stopped by a flower shop, and I bought her a bouquet of long-stemmed roses. "This is because sometimes I think of you as a young woman," I told her. Her eyes lit up with delight, and she kissed me on the cheek. I hugged her and kissed her on the forehead, then held her to me for a minute until I realized that we were in public and such affection might be misconstrued. Although we were father and daughter, there were still limits to how much affection we should be showing.
Kimmy wanted to go to the park again and watch the sunset, but unfortunately there wasn't time. We had to be home to wait for the furniture, so we climbed into the car and drove back to my house.
We had just arrived home when the van carrying her new bed and dresser pulled up next to the curb. A couple of large men with friendly faces got out, and Kimmy took my hand, once again reverting to her shy mode. The men greeted me, and I helped them move the bed and dresser into the house. It was a tight squeeze going through the door, but somehow we made it, and set them up in Kimmy's room. Once the men left, she went in and lay down on her bed. I stood at the doorway watching her as she spread herself out on it, a smile on her face.
"It feels so soft, Daddy," she commented. "And it smells so clean. Still, I like sleeping in yours better."
"Mine's not nearly as soft," I replied.
"It's not the bed, it's the company."
I laughed, then left her there and returned to the front room. I collapsed on the couch, a little tired from the events of the day. We had no doubt walked for miles around town, going from one shop to the other, and although I liked to work out, that was a little more walking than I was used to.
A few minutes later, Kimmy emerged from her bedroom and sat down on my lap, laying her head against my chest. Feeling her warm body against mine and seeing the look on adoration on her face made the whole thing worth it. I could do the same thing every day if I had this kind of reward to look forward to.
"Thank you, Daddy," she said.
"You're welcome, honey," I replied, wrapping my arms around her and hugging her to me. We sat like that for a few minutes, just snuggling in each other's arms. I closed my eyes and leaned my head back, letting all the stress in my muscles melt away.
"Are you tired, Daddy?" asked Kimmy.
"Yeah, it was a long day. I'm all worn out."
"Here, then. Let me take care of you." She climbed up off me and sat down at the other end of the couch. My disappointment lasted only a couple of seconds, because she motioned for me to lay my head down in her lap.
She didn't have to ask me twice. I rolled over onto my back and placed my head on her legs so that I could stare up into her smiling face. It felt every bit as nice as I had anticipated, especially when she began to stroke my hair. We talked about nothing in particular, and at every lull in the conversation she interjected, "I love you, Daddy," which made me smile. Maybe I wasn't worthy of the love of such a sweet little girl like this, but it felt really nice to hear her say it.
I felt so relaxed that it wasn't long before I drifted off to sleep, or at least partial sleep. I could still feel her soothing hands stroking my hair and the warmth of her body next to my cheek, but the rest of the world disappeared. Though it wasn't a particularly deep sleep, it felt so comforting and tranquil, and perhaps more satisfying than any nap I had ever taken before.
Half an hour later I awoke to the wonderful sight of my daughter's beautiful face smiling down at me. I yawned and sat up, then she took my hand in hers and lay her head against my shoulder again. We sat like that in blissful silence for the longest time, just enjoying being in each other's presence.
Finally, Kimmy spoke. "Are you feeling better now?" she asked.
"Much better," I replied. "I'm so glad I have someone like you to take care of me."
"That's what I'm going to do. I'm going to take care of my daddy," she smiled. "Do you want me to go fill up the tub so you can take a nice, hot bath?"
That sounded very nice right now. A soak in the tub was just what I needed. I nodded, and Kimmy kissed me on the cheek then hopped up off of the couch and headed for my bedroom. A couple of seconds later I heard the water running. I continued to relax there on the couch, still a little drowsy. Yes, a bath would feel really good. Then I would climb into bed and have a good night's sleep. Even though Kimmy had her own bed now, I wondered if I could talk her into sleeping in mine again tonight.
"The bath's ready, Daddy," I heard her call from the other room. Smiling to myself, I forced myself up off of the couch, then headed down the hall to my bedroom. I stepped into the bathroom, then froze in shock. Kimmy was sitting there in the tub.