Sherman Potter groaned as the phone in the next room started ringing. "Dangnabit." He mumbled into his pillow.
"What is it, Sherm?" His wife asked sleepily as she turned her head slightly.
"Phone." He grumbled as he swung his feet over the edge of the bed. "Probably Mable Stone calling to complain about her lumbago again." Slipping his feet into his slippers he pulled on his housecoat and shuffled towards the door. "Why can't she call and complain during the daytime." After about seven rings he finally reached the phone. Grabbing up the receiver he exclaimed in annoyance. "What is it?"
"Colonel?" The voice on the other end questioned in uncertainty.
"Pierce?" Potter questioned in return, completely surprised to find his old comrade on the other end of the line.
"I'm sorry to call so early..." The caller tried to apologize, but the other man cut him off.
"Nonsense, it's good to hear your voice." His friend told him. "How are you doing?"
"I'm doing fine, Colonel." Hawkeye replied, glad to hear his old friend's voice again. "How are you doing?"
"Oh, I'm fine." The other man replied, a broad smile lighting up his face. "Semi-retirement agrees with me."
Hawkeye chuckled. "My dad says the same thing."
"How are things in Crabapple Cove?" Potter asked as he sat down at his kitchen table.
"Fine. I can't tell you how good it feels to be home." Hawkeye commented eagerly from his kitchen table.
"Have you heard anything from BJ lately?" Potter asked curiously.
"Yeah, he's doing great." Hawkeye replied warmly. "Actually he and Peg and Erin are due here tomorrow afternoon." He glanced at the clock on the wall and chuckled. "I guess I should say this afternoon."
"That's great!" The Colonel exclaimed eagerly. "I'm glad you boys kept in touch. Friendship is a rare thing, you have to make sure you hang on to it when you find it. I actually got a call from his myself today."
"You did?" Hawkeye exclaimed in surprise. "What did he call for?"
"Said he called to say 'hi', find out how I was doing." Potter replied, then with a chuckle added. "I didn't believe it for a minute though."
"What do you mean?" The other man asked in surprise.
"I mean there was more to it then that." His old CO remarked. "He was fishing for information."
"Said that he was worried about you because you were kind of down." The older man continued. "Said that you missed a certain member of the 4077th and was hoping that I could help you boys look for her."
"He did, did he." Hawkeye chuckled in amusement as he looked at Margaret. "So what did you tell him?"
"I told him I'd see what I could find out." Potter replied. "But I haven't had a chance to find anything out. I only talked to him today."
"Well, don't go to any trouble on my account." The younger man told him, a smirk on his handsome face.
"No trouble at all son." The other man assured him. "I'm glad to help. I hate to hear that you're so down. But cheer up. We'll find her."
"Actually that's the reason I'm calling." Hawkeye remarked as he reached over and squeezed Margaret's hand.
"You mean that you didn't call just to hear my lovely voice." Potter teased as he chuckled slightly.
"Well, let's just say that wasn't the only reason I called." Hawkeye teased back. "Actually, I was calling to see if you and Mrs. Potter would be able to make a trip to Crabapple Cove in two weeks."
"Two weeks?" Potter exclaimed in surprise. "What's up in two weeks?"
"A mini reunion I'm hoping." The younger man commented.
"Oh?" The other man's eyebrows raised as he waited expectantly.
"I'm getting married." Hawkeye dropped the bomb, then waited for a reply – which he got very quickly.
"Married!!" Sherman Potter exclaimed excitedly. "You're getting married? For real?"
"Why does everyone keep asking me that?" Hawkeye quipped good-naturedly, looking at Margaret mischievously.
Margaret smiled slyly and in a loud voice answered. "I don't know, Darling. Maybe because they all know you so well."
The pair couldn't help but chuckle as they pictured the look on their old CO's face when he'd heard Margaret's voice. Hawkeye waited patiently for him to comment.
"Pierce?" The older man finally asked, his tone very controlled.
"Yes, Colonel?" Hawkeye asked innocently.
"Was that Margaret's voice that I just heard?"
"It might have been." The younger man replied wickedly. "I'll ask." Looking at Margaret he asked mischievously. "Colonel Potter wants to know if it was your voice that he just heard?"
"I think so." Margaret replied loudly. "I haven't been using anybody else's lately."
"Hawkeye." The Colonel started speaking very slowly. "Are you and Margaret getting married?"
"That's what she tells me." Hawkeye replied calmly.
"YAHOOOO!!!" Potter exclaimed excitedly as jumped out of his chair. A moment later his wife came rushing out of their bedroom, a worried expression on her weary face.
"What's wrong, Sherm?" She asked anxiously.
"Nothing – absolutely nothing. Hawkeye Pierce and Margaret Houlihan are getting in two weeks!" He told her eagerly. Turning back to the receiver he held in his hand he said excitedly. "We'll be there. Oh boy will we be there! And Hawkeye..."
"You have a lot of explaining to do!"
"Good morning you two." Daniel Pierce greeted as he descended the stairs at about six-thirty that morning. You're both up very early this morning." Looking at his son he chuckled. "I don't usually see you before nine-thirty."
"Well, don't get use to it." Hawkeye told him. "This is a very rare occurrence. Maybe once in a lifetime."
"I'll remember that." His father chuckled as he moved to pour himself a cup of coffee. "So what has you two up before the roosters this morning?"
"Actually, we've been planning our wedding." Hawkeye told him.
"At six-thirty in the morning?" Daniel remarked, his eyes twinkling in amusement.
"No, we actually started somewhere around two-thirty last night." His son replied. "Neither one of us could sleep, so we both ended up down here and we got talking and voila – wedding plans."
"So what are your plans so far?" His father asked as he sat down at the table across from his son. "When's the wedding going to be?"
"In two weeks." Margaret told him, pointing to the date that she'd circled on the calendar in front of her.
"Two weeks!" Daniel exclaimed in surprise. "Isn't that kind of short notice? I mean you won't be able to get a hall or anything in that short period of time."
"We don't need a hall." Hawkeye told him. "We're going to have the wedding right here in the house."
"Here?" His father repeated in surprise.
Hawkeye nodded. "We just want something small and simple. A few guests - mostly our closest friends, a few from the hospital."
"What about a minister?" The elder Dr. Pierce questioned. "You'll have to give him some advanced notice. Two weeks may not be enough."
"No problem." Hawkeye dismissed quickly. "Father Mulcahy, the chaplain from the 4077th, is more than happy to perform the ceremony. He'll be here next Friday, along with Colonel and Mrs. Potter."
"You've certainly been busy." Daniel remarked as he took a sip of his coffee. "Who else is coming to this small, simple affair?"
"Radar and his mom..."
"...And his new girlfriend." Margaret added with a slight chuckle.
Hawkeye chuckled and shook his head. "I can't picture our little Radar with a girlfriend." He gave an exaggerated sigh and said. "They grow up so fast."
"You idiot." Margaret commented affectionately as she reached out and squeezed his hand. Addressing her future father-in-law she said. "Klinger and his wife Soon-Lee are also coming. They're back from Korea."
"Klinger?" Daniel repeated thoughtfully. "Wasn't he that Corporal that kept trying to get out of the army by wearing ladies' clothes?"
"That's him." Hawkeye nodded. "He almost succeed a couple of times, but usually managed to mess things up before it came through."
"I look forward to meeting him." His father said with a chuckle. "Who else is coming from the 4077th?"
"Charles Winchester." Margaret replied, checking the list in front of her. "Oh, and Trapper."
"Ah, your old cohort in mischief." Daniel commented to Hawkeye. "Another person I look forward to meeting."