Chapter 7: An Unwanted Departure and The Arrival of a Loved but Unexpected Nooboo

The kids went to school on Monday, including Sophia.  Both her parents and David and I were adamant that she continue going to school until the last possible moment.  She climbed onto the bus with Draco; he smiled at her and took her hand.  “It’s ok,” he murmured, leaning close.  “It’ll be ok.  I’ll be with you all day.”

“Yeah!  And I’ll be around the halls too,” Falkor chimed in.

While the kids were in school, David and I just sat on the couch, his arm around my shoulders.  There was silence for a long moment.  “I can hear your worry,” my husband murmured.

“Sorry.  I can’t help it.  I just…”  I sighed.  “They’re so young, David.  I…”  I couldn’t help the smile as I explained.  “When I met you, I didn’t think I had any more room in me for love.  It was like the sun shining into every crack and crevice, banishing the shadows.  I didn’t think it could get any better… then Draco was born.  And Falkor.  The light just seemed to flood me.”  I rested my temple on his shoulder.  “I love them both so much and while I have no doubt that Draco will make a wonderful father, there is so many more things he should be doing now.”

David pressed his lips to my cheek.  “I know.  But you’re right.  He’ll be a wonderful father and I think Sophia will make a wonderful mother.  And we’ll be there to help them.  We’ll let them enjoy being teenagers as much as we can.”

“You’re right,” I murmured, hugging him.  “You’re right.  We just need to move forward.”

We sat like that for a bit longer before he leaned close and whispered in my ear, “Happy Anniversary, my Queen.”  My eyes widened.  In all the excitement, I had forgotten.  Our lips met and I wrapped my arms around him.

We spent the rest of our Anniversary at home, just enjoying being with one another.  The kids would all be home soon, so it was nice to just bask in the quiet and forget, even for a little while, about… well, everything but him and I.

When they got home, they sat down to do their schoolwork.  Sophia looked pretty uncomfortable, her already swollen belly making it hard to reach the table a bit.

After a bit of chatting and some banter, we all broke off to our separate ways.  I went down to the basement to concoct some potions to sell, David was painting, Falkor was as well.  Draco and Sophia stayed out in the living room, watching TV.  I was bent over my book, trying to read the scrawling print when I heard a wail and very chilling music.  My heart seemed to freeze in my chest and I was moving before my brain fully realized it.

As I flew up the stairs, I reached the landing on the main floor of our home and my worst fears were realized.  Grim was here.

He had come for Diego.  Diego… he had been there with me since I had arrived here in Monte Vista.  He had been my companion, had helped me survive in a world that I knew so little about.  He had been my best friend.  But Grim was here for him.  He had lived to be 49 days, a decent lifespan for a dog such as he.  But now he would accompany Grim to the Netherworld.

Just as he had always been, Diego approached his journey like it was going to be a great adventure.  With a spirited bark and what I swore was a wink at me, he leapt into the green light… leaving us all in shock.

Sobbing and tears filled the house.  He was gone.  I found myself… numb.  Even as the others began to cry, my eyes were dry.

Poor Darcy… her cries for her mate were heart-wrenching.

And poor Falkor.  He had had to stay after school to help his teacher with cleaning out the animal cages.  He got home too late to say goodbye.

After a seeming eternity of numbness, it all welled up and seemed to explode at once.  The tears just wouldn’t stop.  David held me as I cried it all out.

We placed Diego’s tombstone outside, giving him a place of honor.  Goodbye Diego Wyvern.  May you rest in peace my dear loyal friend.

After a period of mourning, a period in which the house was very subdued and quiet.  We had two birthdays.  One was Darcy.  She is now an elder.

And my youngest child became a teenager.  We all felt bad that he aged up alone, but Falkor took Diego’s death hard.  Sophia and Draco had each other.  I had David.  Falkor had always been a bit more likely to retire to his own room to amuse himself.  He preferred to mull things over in his own time, his own way.  When we asked him why he hadn’t at least told us about his birthday, he had said he hadn’t really felt like a party and figured none of us would either.  Though we didn’t have cake, David did make a batch of goopy carbonara, Falkor’s favorite food.  It was nice to sit down as a family.

And yes, David did give me a surprise kiss which had the desired reaction of the kids pretending to gag.  It lightened the mood a bit.

Here’s my boy.  I wasn’t sure what to make of his new facial hair.  But he seems to like it.

Falkor went for his first day of high school with Sophia and Draco.  Unlike Draco, Falkor finds school “just alright.”  I think he enjoys having his brother with him though.  Aside from a certain little girl (Falkor came clean to me about where he left to early in the mornings before school), Falkor doesn’t have many friends, but he seems to like it that way because the friends he does have are close ones.

Wednesday night was prom.  Falkor decided he didn’t want to go.  Due to her very pregnant figure, Sophia didn’t have many options as far as clothing so she ready pretty early.  David had gone out to the business center to check out some art exhibit there and I was in the basement.  Just as Draco was heading to get ready… Sophia went into labor.

Unfortunately, my son quite lost his head at first…

From what Sophia told us later on, he was screaming out all sorts of silly things, like, “Pawn to Knight 4, pawn to Knight 3!”  But eventually, he seemed to calm down enough to help her to the cab so that they could get to the hospital.

Apparently, my son had lost his head enough that he’d changed into his tux before they left, so he accompanied his pregnant girlfriend to the hospital in the tuxedo he was to wear to prom.

A crew had come in to prepare a nursery for our newest arrival and they got it down in record time.

Several hours later, after a difficult child birth (the doctors seemed to think it had to do with Sophia’s age and most likely the stress from grieving with Diego), Sophia returned home, healthy but tired.  She carried with her my granddaughter, Aurora Breton Wyvern.  Welcome dear child.


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