"I'm getting MARRIED!"
When that kiss finally ended, I was left looking up at my new fiancée. “Party?”
“Gerard.” He says. “Gerard is okay for now. We’re alone.”
“Gerard,” I correct my former statement. “What… what made you do this?” He looks at me, eyes big and confused. Mine were a little cloudy with tears. “All of this? It’s so elaborate.”
“I know.” He says with a small shrug, arms around my waist still. “I wanted this to be special.” I nod my understanding. He leans in, rubbing his nose against mine fondly. I smile at him, still amazingly happy. This was a high like no other. No uppers could make me feel like this. Ever. “Go on, look at the ring. I know you haven’t, and I can see you want to do it.” He nudges my head from his gently, allowing me to remove an arm from around his neck to glance at my newly ringed finger.
I lift it near to my face, just far enough away to take it in. “And yes angel, I got real diamonds.”
“They could be rhinestones from a craft store, I wouldn’t care.” I reply, gazing at the ring fondly. It was very me. Sparkly, classic, vintage almost. “How in the hell did you afford this? We don’t have this kind of money, Gerard.”
“Scarlet.” He says gently. “I do have that kind of money. Mikey had some, Ray too. Ryan had a bit he gave, he helped me get your ring size, actually. Well, Violet… she knows a guy who got me a great price. Oh, I sold my soul, too. But I figured I got one shot to do this, and I wanted the ring to be perfect. Is it not sparkly enough?” He sounds anxious, worried I didn’t like it.
“I love this ring. It’s exactly what I’ve always dreamed of.”
“YOU are what I’ve always dreamed of.” He says with a cheesy grin. I bust out laughing, release him from my grasp to let him bend over. I take this moment to stare at his ass. “Yes. I have an ass.”
“Guys can have nice asses too.” I say with a cute chuckle. “I like yours. A lot.” He jokingly wiggles it, and stands back up straight. He’s holding a bottle of champagne. “It’s sweet, no worries. And low alcohol content.” He smiles, and pops the cork off easily, catching it before it fell to the sand of the beach and hit something or someone. We were stuck in place, just near his proposal. Still in our balloon, in the air. I’ve taken my shoes off at this point, and am taking small sips of my drink. “It’s nice out tonight.” I say, arms dangling a bit over the edge of the basket. He comes up behind me.
“Angel, you’ve made me the happiest guy in the world.” He says, looping an arm around my body.
“You’ve made me the happiest girl.”
“I have three beautiful children because of you.”
“As do I, you forget that I’m the one they just so happened to pop out of.” I smirk, drink some more. “you know… all of this… it’s perfect.”
“Is it? I was really rather worried it wasn’t enough or it wasn’t romantic enough or maybe it was TOO cheesy.” He sounds so worried, so I turn and smile at him. Leave it to me, to calm the one person that can bring me down from murderous rages.
“No, it’s perfect. But you could’ve just been like ‘yo, be my mrs!’ and I’d have said yes in a heart beat.” I explain calmly.
“Eh. Not me. I wanted this to be something you’ll never forget.” He says, giving me that awkward smile while he looks down. My heart flutters a bit, though it had been for a few minutes now. I was still riding out the rush of excitement that had flooded me with his proposal.
“I promise it won’t be something I forget by choice.” I smile, give him a small kiss.
There’s some silence. “Do we want to tell people immediately? Do you want to keep it private?”
“We saw how well keeping the fact that I had a bun in the oven a ‘secret’ worked. We do, you know, live with a few hundred teenagers. No secrets exist. Ever.” I reply. “seriously. They just don’t exist.”
He nods, laughing with me. “So, we tell them in the morning?”
“Of course. Does this mean we’re going to actually be able to sleep tonight?”
“I’m sure Cyanide Killer has EXAHUSTED our poor children by now.” He laughs. “I’m scared that our daughters may have new hair colors, by the time we get back. And poor baby Ari, probably is in shock from Cyanide playing with him so much. I bet all the dolls will have new outfits.”
I shrug. “Or Violet gave them sleeping aids. I hope I left enough milk for morning, Ari gets so hungry when he wakes up and nothing but milk will do, then he’ll take some formula… and dear GOD now I’m getting married I have to work off this baby weight…”
He laughs at me again. “Angel, calm down. We can get married in two years if that’s what you want. Twenty, if that’s how long it takes you to make sure everything is perfect. We could do it tomorrow. Court house, or something. Hell, we could do it in the next two hours. Sure, no dress, no true ceremony, but it’s all up to you. I’m just there for formalities and cake.” He pauses a moment. “But mostly the cake.” He clarifies. “Yeah, the cake.”
I laugh at his goofy smile. “Why don’t we give me some time to actually plan it. I’ll try to keep it cheap.”
“We can make a lot of things. I’m sure we could get enough fabric to sew you a dress.” He says in agreement with my “keep it cheap” statement. “Cheap doesn’t mean gaudy. I’m only asking we have a classy wedding. No theme, hopefully. Unless it’s super cool. A motif, maybe. Colors, of course. They’ll have to coordinate. I can draw sketches of anything we need. You can control most everything.”
I smile at him. “always my artist.”
“And soon your husband!” He says, laughing, taking my hands in his. I get a kiss on the nose, making me blush. “But, I’ll not pass up the chance to see you in a wedding dress, so you can figure that one out, I hope. I don’t wanna see it before you’re walking down an aisle, or whatever you choose to walk down.”
“Violet knows a guy, she told me once. Sells dresses he makes. He actually made me this…” I say, doing a little spin. I’m a bit tipsy, and so when I stumble, I’m thankful Party has us down low to the ground. “Are we going home?” I ask, smiling big.
“If you want, Sun.” I say, holding her. I’d caught her when she stumbled. She could usually drink me under the table, but tonight, she was tipsy off a glass or two. I’d not had any, having to drive her home. Being the man was no fun, sometimes.
“Hey, baby?” I ask, as we begin to touch down, I help her off, and gather our stuff, taking it to the car quickly. I’d had somebody collect all the candles too, while we were in the air. “Do you see a white van?”
“Yeah.” She says, squinting.
“Take off the shoes.” I say quietly, hand going to the gun in the air balloon. “And get back in.” I say. I get us back in, and take off, hoping we can get up high enough in time.
A squad of Dracs jump out of the van, racing up the beach. They fire at the balloon, missing quite a bit. Thankfully, we’d had time to start getting up in the air, and we weighed less, so we went higher, much, much faster.
“What a lovely end to our night…” I huff. Of course, freaking BLI had to come and just RUIN it. Ruin our perfect night.
I was terrified. They couldn’t take us again. I wasn’t losing my Sun again. And now I had two daughters and a son to worry about. I needed to protect them. Oh god, what if they’d already gotten them?!? They were my babies. If I’m freaking out, I can only imagine what’s going on, with Sun having the maternal instincts she does. IF they had her kids, she’d kill each and every one of them, probably with her bare hands.
What brings me out of my panicked thoughts is the sound of Sun’s voice. “Oh, I love adventure and excitement!” She says, sounding sober already. I let the balloon fly quite a bit out; trying to hide us from the range the Dracs could shoot. Which was far. Very far. Sun squints, and then frowns. “Not Scarecrow.” She says. I look at her, one eyebrow raised. She takes my gun, flies us a bit closer to them, amid my screams of near terror.
“Sun, we’re going to get captured!” I scream at her, terrified. I begin throwing knives from our left over basket at them, making them run. I hit one pretty good in the foot, which made him or her, maybe it… scream. It limped off like a dog with a hurt paw, and I smirked like the cat that ate the canary. “Sun! Move us AWAY from them!”
“Nah, I got this.” She replies nonchalantly. A shot hits part of the fabric of our balloon, dropping us lower.
“I swear to god, we will NOT go back to the labs. They won’t let either of us out alive this time. And we have KIDS to worry about now, Sun. Do something.” I say, trying not to be angry. What the hell was she doing? She was going to get us killed! Had she gone insane?
“Oi! Pea brains!” She yells. I see her fire off a few shots when they look at her, all of which hit their mark, or damn well near it. Her hair is fluttering in the wind, curls going wild as she drops at least five Dracs, leaving only four left. I’d taken care of two, with knives and a few plates and a bottle of champagne. She laughs happily, sounding just like Helena with a new toy, actually. She starts lowering the balloon, eventually crash landing it on the last Drac. There’d been a sickening crunch as it’s bones or circuitry, or whatever was inside that damn being’s insides broke and shattered from the weight of the balloon. Sun hadn’t even flinched.
I laugh; grab the things in the basket, sand bag all the Dracs down, and then run, holding her hand. We run up the beach and boardwalk, laughing our asses off. We throw ourselves into her car, and take off for the Academy, taking the long way. Just to lose the Dracs of course.
“That was amazing.” I say to her, smiling. She smiles back at me. “And incredibly sexy. I hae the coolest fiancée EVER.”
“And I have an even cooler one.” She replies, kissing me as I step on the gas, making us both laugh and squeal in pure joy. We drive fast, taking a long way home, through the towns, just to be alone for a bit, and to lose the dracs that could be following us.
And maybe mess up that makeup a bit. On her end, of course. And my fabulous hair do… well… that was a bit more mussed than it had been, after the car had problems so we hung out in the back to “Get warm”.
(An hour later, at the Academy.)
I put the car in park, squealing to an awesome stop, in which I fishtailed in. Sun had found her way into another bottle of champagne, and I’d been drinking some, figuring that as close as we were to the Academy, her sense would kick in if we were in danger. We seemed fine, but you could never tell. Sun seems tipsy, but still alert. I open her door after we park, pick her up and carry her on my back, while she giggles. Tonight, we were spending the night in my Block, without the kids to wake us up at all hours. I didn’t plan on anything except maybe some kissing and lots of cuddling, while we watched movies. She’d denied all of my sexual advances with an iron fist, stating she wasn’t doing 9 months again, even when I promised to be safe. She’d shut me down more times than I could count. So I didn’t really have any hopes.
I open the door, set her down, and hold said door for her. She walks in, and I smile. I’d cleaned it up, but it still smelled like home. Cigarettes, coffee, peppermints. I smile happily, kick my shoes off. Sun has hers off and neatly placed in the corner by the door. Her feet must be killing her. I walk over to my dresser and start stripping. Sun laughs, once my shirt comes off. I blush, not even seeing her. “Yeah, I gained some weight…” I say.
She comes up closer behind me. “I’m just laughing at how you stripped. Very… stripper like.”
“Imagine that, me, stripping. Like a stripper.” I say with a small laugh. Her arms come around my waist, pulling me close. “You’re better fit to strip than I am.” She turns me towards her and smiles. “But these pants suck, can I take them off?” I ask, making her release me. I wiggle out of them, and blush quickly, remembering I was wearing superman underwear.
She cracks up, hugging me, while I awkwardly searched for some sweatpants to sleep in. She’s started struggling with the back of her dress, trying to untie it. I finally step in, undo the laces quickly, then the zipper. She blushes too. “I’m the one that gained the weight.” She says quietly.
“No. You’ve lost it all, you know that.” I say to her quietly, just looking at her.
She brushes past me, grabbing something to sleep in, slipping it on. I hug her too my chest, very quietly. “You’re skinnier than when you got pregnant. You know that, right?” I ask. And she shrugs. “sun, you’re perfectly skinny. You know that.” I say, hugging her close. “That shirt didn’t used to hang off you. It’s mine, too.” I say. She’s wearing an old top of mine, which she uses to sleep in. She’s tugged on underwear, a softer pair to sleep in. Still, lacy and quite pretty. I liked them. Hell, I just liked her half naked. She goes and runs a hand through her hair. I place kiss on the top of her head, then carry her to our bed for the night.
“Stay here. I’ve got popcorn and movies for us.” I sya, letting her get comfy, while I go and set up the movies. Tim Burton. So much Tim Burton. From his very earliest, to his very last. A few old-school slasher, zombie, vampire movies had been thrown in, just for variety. I press play, push random, and my DVD player selects a random dvd in the lineup, as I come back with a huge bowl of popcorn for us, and water (for me) and hot tea (for her). She drinks some of her tea, sets it on the bedside table, and snuggle sin to me, happily laying her hand and head on my chest. I was slightly propped up, on some pillows. I smile, run a hand through her hair, just fondly.
“You’ll look gorgeous in your wedding dress.” I say to her quietly, as the previews go.
“And you look so good dressed up. What details do you want to have control over?”
“Um… what I’m wearing, and some of the food choices. Other than that, this is your special day, you have fun with it. I’ll find the cash.”
She makes a simple statement. “Most of the stuff I like can be made pretty cheap, and we have free labor here.”
“When are we going to be telling the students?” I ask her. “I mean, that ring is hard to hide. I’m sure you could blind people with it.”
“Soon?” She asks, looking at me hopefully. “I’ll be careful with the ring. I’d hate to lose this.”
“I doubt you could. It’s a huge diamond. And the kids would be stupid to steal it.” I laugh at her, as she stares at it. “You finally looked at it.”
“I’ve been trying not to stare. It’s so beautiful.” She says.
“Eh, think the girl wearing it is much better.” I say with a small smirk and a shrug. She laughs, and we munch on some popcorn, watching the movie. I pause, see her fiddle with the ring. “Have you seen the inside?”
She shakes her head.
“Go on, look then.” I urge, not even pausing the movie. I just let it play. I had grabbed the remote and turned it down, just so she could have a bit of quiet to read the inscription on the inside.
“Mio amore siempre” She reads out.
“My love. Always.” I translate. “In Italian.”
She smiles, hugs me tight to her. I pull her as close as I can, give her a short kiss. No need for long make out sessions that I have to calm myself down from afterwards.
Somebody dies in the movie with a fantastic scream, and our heads both snap to the screen, watching together. She slips her ring back on, and lays her head back on my chest, glowing from the inside out. I could swear her whole body was shining, like the sun. How puntastic, Sun, shining like the Sun…
We make it through movie number three, when she starts yawning, cuddling closer to me, head nuzzled in to my chest sleepily. I smile, start kissing her all over, like I usually do before bed. The movies have finally shut off, thank god.
She looks up at me and smiles.
“Bed time?” I ask, and she shakes her head. “What, then?” She smiles at me, kisses me once, just a quick peck. “More movies?” She shakes her head. “What is it you want to do, then?”
Her eyes flash pink. Bright, deep, sparkling magenta.
There really was, in that moment, no need for words. Her eyes and facial expression said it all. And when I mean all, I mean every little detail. In one color, I knew.
I also knew that I’d never been happier to see pink.
(The next morning.)
I wake up with a yawn, Sun curled in to me, my arm draped around her waist from behind her, the other out and around my head kind of haphazardly. She was still sleeping quietly, and I look at the clock on the wall. 915. This was the latest we’d slept in months. That being said, I pull my fiancée closer, and close my eyes, thankful I’d invested in blackout curtains. It was still really dark inside my Block, dark enough to let me try to drift back to sleep. Sun shuffles, turning towards me. I smile, kiss her forehead, watch her smile in her sleep, and nuzzle into my chest. She sighs, and I hold her. She looked so serene.
She needed the sleep, we both did. Three kids was a lot to handle, and they were progressing so fast. Steps were going to happen, then walking… talking… oh god, then BOYS. BOYS would happen. Or GIRLS. Oh God….
I hear a laugh that breaks me from my calculations of how many baseball bats I’d need to buy to hit some poor boy that broke any of my kids hearts. Sun would take care of any girl that hurt one of our kids, with graceful, but iron hand. A hand curled into a fist, at that.
“Love?” Sun asks. I smile, look at her. “You look worried, is everything okay?”
“Everything is WONDERFUL!” I say, a bit too loudly. She raises one eyebrow at me; her eyes still a dark grey, slowly warming up to a dark blue that would soon be purple with some gold flecks in it. I smile, kiss her forehead. “No, I was just thinking about the kids. They’re probably missing us. Ryan’s probably shaking in fear, poor thing. Violet’s probably had a mental breakdown already.”
Sun laughs, and I let the sound of it, much like breaking glass on a wooden floor, reverb through me, warming me with happiness. “I’m sure they’ve got everything covered. They did, of course,” she adds. “deal with a very pregnant, hormonal, demanding me.” She pauses for a moment, thinking. “We can stay here, for another hour or two. I’ll make breakfast.”
“You sure? I can handle it.”
“No, it’s fine. How do scrambled eggs sound? Cheese, bacon?” She asks. I nod, kiss her one last time and smile. “Oh, take it easy, horndog. You got your fill last night.” She chuckles, as do I. Hers was girly and feminine, mine was a little more manly. They mixed nicely.
“I never get enough of you.” I coo to her. She just rolls her eyes, hoping up and grabbing some of my sweatpants and a tanktop, which she slips on quietly, walking over our torn off pajamas. I lay back on the pillows, sighing happily. Last night HAD been fun. Perfect, in fact. Including dinner and the ride, the Dracs and the engagement.
I hear eggs cracking, Sun whisking something, then the sizzle of a pan heating up as she makes bacon to mix into our scrambled eggs. There’s a crinkle as paper in unwrapped, the metallic ring of the trashcan lid being replaced after being opened, something thrown into it.
“I’m making toast too. With jam. And peanut butter!” She says, chirping the words to me from my kitchen. I get up eventually, laying around in bed lazily for another ten minutes after her announcement of the carbs that’d be included with our breakfast filled with gooey, melted cheesy goodness, greasy, crispy bacon, and delicious scrambled eggs. I was rather excited, the food had been lacking around here, as Sun had no time to cook properly, what with having three kids to take care of now. We ate a lot of ramen, which, don’t get me wrong… isn’t a BAD thing… but it for sure wasn’t always a GOOD thing.
Sun sets two plates with some sliced fruit, two slices of toast, and eggs on the table, smiling at me as she pours us some orange juice to drink. I sit down at the table with her, and we both dig in, eating a lot more than we both probably should’ve. I make us each some coffee, to fight off any hangover that could be leftover from last night. She never really got hungover, but I did. And I got it bad. Sun had taught me to control my drinking, not abuse it.
“Now.” She says, after she cleaned the kitchen, and I did the dishes. “Shower time, then we have to get dressed, see the kids, get them ready for the day, then go teach class. I’m doing talent today.” She says, looking at the schedule on my wall carefully.
I had mine memorized. “Fight for me. But first, we have to have the morning meetup. That’ll be the time to announce the upcoming nuptails, Mrs. Poison.” I coo, arms around her waist, lips pressing a kiss to her cheek. She shrinks up as she laughs. I let her go, off to shower on her own. It was obvious that I, today, wasn’t invited.
Party and I were both ready now, dressed and everything. I had my ring on, hair up in a very 40’s style with a bandanna, a pair of highwaisted shorts on, and a red and white striped top. Bright blue heels adorned my feet, my favorite pair. I held Party’s hand in mine, smiling as we walked to my Block. I can hear squealing children already, and drop his hand. My babies were waiting, and I missed them. I bust through the door, and smile. Three excited little humans squeal at me in delight, cooing and gurgling. Helena and Fia were dressed, and Cyanide Killer was dressing Ari in an adorable pair of baby pants and a cute shirt somebody made for him. Our students that could sew had been busy at work making baby clothes, though I’d told them to not worry about it, our kids were covered. But still, every few days, a new dress would come in, pajamas, a blanket, a stuffed animal. I was eventually going to have to put a ban on the whole thing, making it an occasional project.
“Fia!” I say, and she crawls over to me, wearing a big pair of heart shaped sunglasses, her little curls tied on top of her head with a small piece of ribbon I’d cut from one of my too small pieces of lingerie, from much, much before my pregnancy with these three. It’d never fit me, now that the breastfeeding had left me with bigger boobs. So I made use of the fabric, taking the ribbons and making hair ties for my girls, and soft covers for random baby items out of the actual material. Everything had a use, here at the Academy. Anything could be repurposed. Old peanut butter jars were used in art classes for water containers, or used to house any kind of small plants that attracted birds we could kill and eat if times got tough, in relation to chow.
“Mommy missed you very, very much.” I coo to my baby girl, looking at her. She looks directly at my ring finger, and coos and gurgles with excitement, eyes flashing to a bright blue. Her eyes, like mine, naturally rested somewhere in the purples, but she had more gold than I did. Blue must mean excitement. We’d never know, until she could talk. I let her touch it, and move my hand away gently when she tries to eat it. “nope, that is not for mouths, silly baby.” I coo, kissing her forehead. She gurgles at me again, and squirms until she places her lips on my head back, looking at me for my approval. I let my eyes flicker to be the same color as hers, and she giggles and claps her hands happily.
My fiancée has his black haired daughter in his arms, and she’s wearing a pair of baby sunglasses that look much like her fathers favorite pair of sunglasses, in miniature. She had on a pair of bright red baby skinny pants made out of the softest fabric we could smuggle, buy, or steal, and a cute little shirt on, stitched with a small union jack. Ever daddy’s little punk rock princess, she had a sister who I felt would take much more after me, in terms of style. She, Fia that is, had her father’s temperament. Very patient, very hard-working, when she wanted something bad enough, and very open to laughing at the smallest thing. She was silly. Very silly. And she was mine. Very much mine. I hold her up; take her over to sit near dad, who was talking to Helena in that stupid baby voice all parents do. She, Helena in this case, looked over it. Very, very over it. As much as a kid her age could. I’m sure we’d have eyerolling sooner than usual.
“And you’re the cutest wittle babeh ever. Yes you are, yes you are.” He coos to her. “And you and sissy and Ari are the bestest babies in the world, yes you are!” He says. She just rolls her eyes, and looks to me. She gurgles at me, and promptly reaches for me, no longer fascinated with Dad’s bright red hair. Generally, she’d stare for hours at it, especially after he re-dyed his whole head, when the color started to fade. When it was freshly done, dryed, and styled, she’d touch it for hours, pull strands of her own hair p next to it to compare, poke strands of it, yank on it like reins… she was a baby obsessed with the feeling of the world around her. While Fia liked sounds, Helena liked how things felt. She was picky about fabrics.
I hold her close to me, and Cyanide comes over. “Hey you. They were great. Went right to sleep for me, and Ari took some baby food, once I bribed him with a bottle sip after every three bites. Helena didn’t throw food at me, so that’s nice! Oh, and I watched a movie with them, and played dolls, and got my hair pulled so many times I think I’ve lost count. All in all, I’m glad to have watched them.” He’s quiet, but has a smile on. His eyes carry that look of utter exhaustion. “I’m just never having any of my own. Ever.”
“You know I’ll gladly help you with anything, in return for the huge favor you did me.” Party replies very casually. He’s holding Ari now, who is just discovering colors and is taken with riding on dad’s back like a monkey, using locks of atomic red hair to steer him like a horse. He must’ve learned that from his sister.
“No, no, can I just cancel my class for the day?”
“What is it?”
“I think I’m helping with job training. Hair cutters and dyeing. They work so hard. I just taught layers the other day.” He replies easily, looking about half asleep already. If we kept him any longer, he’d be sleeping on my blue and purple rug. Not good.
“Go ahead, cancel class. Just go to bed. You need it man.”
He hurry’s out, grabbing his jacket quickly, repetitively murmuring something to the effect of “no children. Never. Never ever, ever.”
I just shake my head a bit, roll my eyes. He’d be back. I knew he would.
(Later that day)
I walked in to Talent, knowing Vi was watching Ari, and Fia and Helena were in the small, sound proofed room, with a small baby monitor we’d set up out of two radios, with their talk button constantly pushed, so I could check on them as they napped.
“Okay, ladies and gents.” I say, seeing all the singers, musicians, all assembled as one. A few dancers, though, I really hadn’t worked them since the babies were born. I had very little rythym, but loved dancing. I guess I could just sync up with others, once I saw it. And if I made the routines, they went on MY counts, so my lack of rythym didn’t much matter.
“Dancers, go stretch and warm up. Turns. We’re working triples today.” The small group of them prance off to go to one of the mirrored walls, stretching carefully, checking their shoes and hair every so often. No hair was allowed to be down, unless it was short. Pony tail, tight braid, or bun. As long as it wasn’t swishing around, I was fine with it. Shoes, those were harder, really. Some girls came with pointe shoes and an assortment of other genres. So, as a former dancer, I knew how to make them last, replace the satin and boning on the shoes, all of that stuff I probably never though I’d need in my life. I’ve had the same pair of black pointe shoes for three years now, and danced the soles off them twice a year, at least. Leather wasn’t hard to come by, so replacing those were easy. Satin? That was harder.
“Singers. You know the drill. Warm up your voices. Be careful. We’re going to push your ranges today, and we haven’t in quite a while. So the belters, please, take your time warming up. Sheet music for all of you is in your folder.” The small group goes off, my sister included.
“Insturments… tune up if you haven’t already. Go to the side room, group up by instrument today. I can’t help much, with all of you, but any new material you’ve gotten done, or any covers you’ve worked on, I’ll listen to. It’s a shame, all I know is piano. Those of you on keyboard and piano, same group today. No need to drag everything out.”
I trot off in person to check on my baby girls, who are holding each other in their sleep, like baby otters do so they don’t drift away from each other as they sleep. I rock their crib slowly, and they shift closer under the blanket, sleeping soundly. I make sure they’re nice and warm, then leave, hearing the noise of instruments being tuned, as well as singers starting to go up and down their scales. There’s the sound of feet hitting the floor as people stretch, warm up turns, and jump. It all blends beautifully to me.
I was dressed to work with dancers first, so I walk over to them, grab our small cd-player, and pick a song out. Nothing too fast or too slow, today. Not when I hadn’t worked them out in a long time. Most of the people here were girls, but we did have a few boys. Useful, but nearly impossible for me to help. I’d never been trained in boys dancing, but they held their own and didn’t whine when we did “pretty” combinations in class.
“Okay,” I speak, pausing the music where I wanted it. “Triple turns. Basically, you’re going to just do the lead up for a double, but spin harder. Keep your leg locked, foot in, and make sure you pick a place and spot it. Whip your head fast, you’ll get around. Do you want me to show you?” I ask.
A small girl in the front, with her green and blue hair, pipes up her response, causing there to be a chain of yesses.
I sigh, smile, secretly happy they’d asked me. “Fine. I haven’t done one of these in years, so it may not be the prettiest.” I say, lacing my shoes tighter. “Pointe? Or jazz shoes?” I ask, praying the said jazz shoes.
“Pointe!” They all chorus, knowing I favored jazz shoes.
I sigh unhappily, lace the pointe shoes on my feet even tighter, so I didn’t trip over the ribbons, clear a space, and take a breath, in position. Foot out, sweep it behind, plié, turn and throw, spot, whip your head, spot, whip, spot, whip, leg locked, finish with pretty arms and a smile.
I go into the set up, sweating a bit, nervousness finally setting in. This’d be the first time I’d properly danced since the babies had been MADE, much less born.
I take off, spinning, remembering to spot and keep my leg locked. I come out of the turn at what I think is three, with a pretty finish, no less. “Ta da!” I sing out, laughing. All my dancers smile and clap at me.
“That was a little wobbly, I think, but I prefer jazz shoes. My long legged people will be doing these up front, so you don’t hit the others. GO in lines, count yourselves off in your head or out loud, and I’ll watch. Do a few, then the next line. A few here meaning 5 for each of you. I have to go check my singers now.” I rush off, shoes already off and traded in for my bare feet.
I give the singers a quick check, then set them an assignment. “All of you, pick a song. One you’ve done before.” They all grab their sheet music. “Now hand it to the person on your left, and then take the person directly in front of yours. That’s your new assignment, but, you have to make it a duet. Do what you’re good at. For those of you that got a broadway-esque song, and you generally sing, well… anything BUT that… sing it, try hard, or you’ll run extra tomorrow, and I’ll make sure there is a spot last in line for you during dinner, after you’ve served everybody else. Your yearly evaluations are coming up soon, for some of you that could mean being moved up into the upperclassjoy rooms, and status. Work hard, it does pay off.” They all nod, some looking quite distraught with their partner and song selection.
I help my instrumentalists as much as I can, look over some new music a few wrote, and help the piano kids with some basic warm-ups. After I rush back through the cycle of dancers, singers, instruments for the next hour, start the dancers on a new set of jumps and turns, a duet, and check out some of the duets from my singers, and listen to a beautiful piece from a few different instruments… I dismiss them from class, with a five minute early gift.
As they all head out, I go to hug one girl, who got a quad turn today, instead of just three. She freaks the hell out.
“Holy shit!” She says, and I look at her, confused. “What!” She calls out excitedly. Everybody looks. I know immediately. I hush her, hand flying at an unhuman like speed to remove my ring.
“I swear to god, tell a soul, and I will be the vote that keeps you from a bunk and not a tent. Are we clear?” I growl. She nods.
“Good.” I reply, dismissing her.
“It’s pretty, you know.” She whispers, as I hug her again. “Congratulations.” She whispers into my other ear, then runs off to join the friends waiting outside.
I sigh, go into the room where my babies are, gently wake them up. As I’m bent over the crib, I’m lost in that little microcosm, staring at my children. I feel hands on my hips and smile, turn to my fiancée, who’s shut the door behind him. “Pity we don’t use this room more often.” He says to me, eyes a bit too sparkly for my taste.
“Hush, you pervert.” I say. “Our kids are in the room. Two of them.”
“You tell anybody?” He asks, nodding to my empty finger. I shake my head. “Same here. Almost did. Figure we should during lunch. Which is in…. ten minutes.” He says, looking at his watch. I slip my ring on, take his hand. “So we should go tell the other instructors now, I figure.”
We head off together, each holding a baby. I’d grabbed Helena, who was still asleep, and he’d grabbed her blonde sister, who was awake.
(A few minutes later.)
We stroll into Ryan’s room, where we’d decided to call the meeting, which basically meant Party telling his brother to get the hell to Ryan’s bunk, and making sure the instructors all heard about it before we got there. They were all sitting around the room, chillin’ like villains, when we walked in. Ryan and Mikey sat close together, making me somewhat curious as to what they were. I figured if there was anything going on, I’d be one of the first to know, considering how close Ryan and I are. I set Helena and her sister in their play pen with Ari, and they all almost immediately fall back asleep.
“Hey guys.” Party starts simply. “So basically, last night-” I cut him off. Damn I was so excited; I just couldn’t hold it in a second longer. I was going to burst, like a balloon filled with too much air.
“Bitches I’m getting MARRIED!” I say happily, and there are three pairs of squeals in the room. Ray, Bob, And Ryan. Violet, she just smirked. Mikey just smiled, and I’m pretty sure Frank had one on too. He’d grown very attached to the children, and we’d had several talks about the ‘us’ that he wanted, and the ‘us’ that we knew we were supposed to be. The friends ‘us’. With no drama. He realized we’d both been mistaking love for lust, or a friendly love, like what you feel for a brother. He’d moved on, I think. Which I was happy about. I think he’d been seeing a girl, somebody not from the Academy. He deserved to be happy, I openly stated that.
“Ah! I knew it! I knew it!” Ryan calls happily. “No, really, I did! HE told me!” He squeals excitedly. “And Jet! And Moon! And all of us except Violet apparently!” He’s still excited, and has rushe dove rto look at my ring, as have Ray and Bob.
“No, I knew. Found out by accident. Found the box on accident. Woopsie.” She just says with a smirk. “Happy for you, Sun. You deserve that. You two will be very happy.”
“I’m happy for you too.” Ghoul says, and I smile.
“When do we tell the camp?” Ryan asks. “I mean, erm. When do YOU TWO, THE LOVELY COUPLE, NOT ME AND YOU AND PARTY, CAUSE I’M ONLY GONNA BE HELPING PLAN IF OU LET ME SUN, tell the camp?” He says, blushing as red as his naturally ginger hair. I just laugh, and he blushes even more, stepping back from me.
“um… now.” I say, and leave the room, flying up to the roof of the building where we’d be giving pre-lunch announcements. The kids are all waiting, but party’s yet to see my wings. I’ve decided to keep them hidden, everybody knows not to breathe a word about them quite yet to him.
I’m joined by all the other instructors on the roof.
“Last time we were here… it was for a very sad occasion.” I speak, having steeped forward. All the students nod. “And this time, it’s for a happy one.” I say. M fiancée takes my hand.
“I asked this girl to marry me, and she said yes.” He says simply. “and we’re very excited. All of you can be involved, if you want to help her in any way. Now, let me be clear. IF that ring goes missing, I will find you and kill you. And then kill you again. Are we clear?” They all nod quickly. He could be scary when he needed to be able to strike the fear of punishment into some teenage hearts.
“Good.” We all chorus. Girls are squealing happily.
Violet speaks. “For those of you who’ve been here before, you know your evaluations are coming up soon. For some of you, this means promotion to upperclassjoy status. For some of you, it means the choice to leave the Academy. For others, it can mean demotion back to KIT, or middle-joy. I’m sorry, but that’s the way it works. We have to be strong, creative, hard-working, to make it here. Especially in the desert. You’ll have a very minimal physical test that Sun will grade, and a creative portion your respective teacher will grade. A little bit of interrogation, a bit of history, basic math, all the classes you take. Don’t worry, Sun won’t judge fight this year.” They all chuckle at the memory, a few cringe. “We don’t need anymore broken bones or shoulders, or hair pulled out. She does fight dirty sometimes.”
“They know that!” I say, blushing bright red. “So, lunch today is sandwhiches. Have fun. If you wanna help with the wedding, come see me privately, ONE AT A TIME. I’ll see what I need help with. I’m very excited. I love you all, and you all are invited, so don’t worry. There will be cake. And great food. And Dancing… and no classes for a week, and only half days and breaks from party and I’s classes for the two weeks after, so he and I can have newly married couple time.”
“That’s all, thank guys.” Party says, dismissing them.
A/N- hey guys! I’m sorry this took forever. School and a lack of subject matter got me in a rut. Anyways, thanks for sticking around for over a year now. I love you all, you’re like my family. I seriously adore each and every one of you. Reviews, rates… I like them. Make them happen. Or else! Oh, and sorry for the title. It was all that I could think of.