Christmas morning time to open the gifts
"I was going to do those" Monica told her. She got a mug out of the cabinet and poured the coffee. "Last night was such fun and I really loved the seafood stew"
Donna smiled "Good morning. I'm glad you liked our Pronzo Delta Vigilla. Traditions are important for families don't you think?"
Monica nodded "Just what is Pronzo Delta Vigilia? Gerard said it was a meal with lots of fish."
Smiling Donna said, "Actually it translates to Christmas Eve Dinner. It contains no meat and that's why all the fish. We used to fast all day then you would break the fast with the Pronzo Delta Vigilia. When I was little my mom made seven different fish dishes. I couldn't wait for church to be over so we could eat."
"It was special and I want to thank you again for including Kelly and me."
Donna looked at her surprised "Well of course we included you. Both you and Kelly are family. Kara is in our family too. I really meant what I said last night. I thank God for bringing all of you to us."
Monica couldn't stop the tears that fell. Donna hugged her "What is it?"
"I'm just happy" she lied. Leaving here would be one of the hardest things she would ever do. Maintaining the lies was getting harder every day.
Donna searched her face. She knew in her heart that Monica was lying. She was anything but happy. Absently Monica reached up and fingered Elena's locket. It was if she got strength from it. "It looks beautiful on you. Gerard wanted you to have it so much. Mom wore it almost every day. Towards the very end when she was so sick Gerard was able to visit her. I can still remember it like it was yesterday. When she saw him she looked so happy and peaceful. When he was getting ready to leave she reached up and took the locket off. He was speechless when she handed it to him and said for him to give it to the woman who would one day hold his heart." Donna looked down trying not to cry at the memory. "When he told me he was going to give it to you I was upset at first. I know that you hold his heart I'm just not sure you will give him yours"
Monica spoke the truth "I love Gee with all my heart." She never got a chance to say more because he walked in.
"What's wrong?" the concern in his voice was strong.
Monica wiped away the remaining tears "We are just being sentimental. I was telling your mom how much I love the locket." She looked at Donna hoping she wouldn't say any more.
He walked over to Monica and kissed her "Merry Christmas" He then gave his mom a hug and kiss "Where is the cannoil?"
Donna swatted at him "Very funny, she gets Merry Christmas and all I get it Where's the cannoli?"
He laughed; "Love you mom, Merry Christmas" Monica grabbed a mug and filled it for him. They sat at the table. "When are we going to open out presents?"
"As soon as Kelly wakes up I guess", Donna, answered. Almost as if she had heard her name Kelly walked bounced in.
"Merry Christmas" she looked so young and happy. "Are we going to open our presents now?"
Monica laughed. "Maybe we should wait until tomorrow. Or maybe the next day. What do you think Gerard?"
"What presents? Did someone get presents?"
Kelly rolled her eyes at him "You are so lame Gerard but I love you anyway." She took off heading for the Christmas tree. Monica saw the look of surprise Kelly's words had caused. Gerard looked at her and smiled. It had touched him that her daughter had said she loved him.
Kelly passed out the gifts when they were all seated. Monica and Gerard settled down on the sofa together and Donna chose to sit on the floor by the tree like Kelly.
"Oh Gerard thank you." She gushed as she opened her gift from him. It was the most expensive iPod on the market. He had bought one for Kara too, "How did you know I wanted this?"
He laughed "Even us old lame guys like iPods. Just remember you have to download only My Chemical Romance songs and videos."
She giggled, rose and ran over to him. "Thanks" she said again giving him a big hug. He happily returned the hug. "OK Gerard you open a gift."
He picked up a small flat package "This is from Monica" He tore into the paper and smiled "Cool, Doom Patrol #19, the first one done by Grant Morrison and its autographed. Man, I can't believe you found this. Thanks" he leaned over and gave her a quick kiss.
"OK Donna your turn" Kelly was officially in charge of the show. Donna picked up the gift from Monica. First she opened the card. Monica has chosen it because it expressed her feelings perfectly. Donna read the words and was touched by the sentiment. She looked at Monica and smiled. "Thanks you". She then unwrapped the box and her eyes lit up, inside was the beautiful porcelain doll. "She is just beautiful. I can't wait to add her to my collection."
"Man will Mikey be pissed." Monica frowned and he went on to explain, "When we were kids he was terrified by her doll collection. He wanted her to lock them up in a cabinet so they couldn't get him"
Monica smiled "If I would have know I would have bought him one of his own"
"That would have been priceless" Gerard said "Got to remember that for his birthday."
"Ok Mom it's your turn." She picked up a box that was from Gerard. "You already gave me a wonderful gift," she said touching the locket.
"Just open it already" Kelly said impatiently.
Monica tore into the paper then burst into laughter. Inside was a caricature of her as Princess Leia, complete with the honey buns hair. "Gerard I love lit. I always wanted to be Princess Leia." She moved closer to him and laid her head on his shoulder.
The rest of the presents were opened and as Kelly said "We all got scads of groovy stuff". Donna was very pleased with the cashmere hat and scarf Gerard bought her and she loved the scrapbook Kelly had made. In it were photos taken since moving to New Jersey. Most were taken in this loving home.
One gift was left and it was Gerard's. Monica watched him open it then look puzzled at first. Then that beautiful, slightly off-kilter smile lit up his face. "You got me a shower curtain."
Donna and Kelly just stared. Monica explained, "In the Blender magazine article Gerard said he was going to buy a shower curtain cause he deserved it. When I saw this one it just seemed to be right."
He had removed the outer paper and yelled "Hell ya, it's a Star Wars shower curtain. How cool is that?"
Once again Kelly rolled her eyes but this time so did Donna.