The morning of River’s birthday Pablo calls to wish her a happy birthday, and to remind her that her job interview will take place later that day. Of course the interview is just a formality, she’s the big boss’s daughter and Pablo isn’t hiding his favouritism from any of the other crooks in town.
River’s actual birthday occurs not long after the phone call, so that Liam can wish her a happy birthday before he has to leave for work.
Brooke’s excited for her big sister.
River wishes for things to make more sense now that she’s a young adult.
Of course the wish doesn’t come true now. If anything, River knows that being an adult means she’ll have to be even more careful from now on. She could face serious jail time if she gets caught stealing.
Before he leaves for work, Liam makes sure River knows what she wants in life. “I’ve talked to the coach, he’s more than willing to give you a shot if you wanted to try and make the team.”
“I know daddy, I’ve thought hard about it.” And she has. But Liam is rarely home, and always working out, she doesn’t want that life anymore. “I’m really excited for my job at the Art Gallery and I really should get going for my first shift.”
“I’m proud of you.” He smiles, giving her a tight hug. “And I hope you know that no matter what you choose in life, I’ll always love you.”
But of course here he’s assuming she really has stopped being a thief.
Both River and Liam are out when Pablo stops by. Serena steps outside to greet him after making sure Brooke is preoccupied with her painting.
“What do you want?”
He ignores her rude tone of voice. “I’m looking for River. I wanted to wish her a happy birthday.”
“She isn’t home. She’s working, at the art gallery like a normal human being. Thank the Watcher she didn’t turn into a thief like you, even after going to meet you all by herself.”
Oh she already knows about that, does she?
Pablo was only going to make sure Serena and Liam knew their little girl had spoken to him behind their backs, but now he’s going to go a step farther.
“You think she works at the art gallery?” He’s practically laughing. “She doesn’t. She works for me as a petty thief. I must say she’s quite gifted and really has thrived under my direction and training. You and Liam must be so proud of your little kleptomaniac.”
Serena’s face falls. “You’re... you’re lying.”
“Come now, Ren, we both know I’m not.”
River’s interview went great, and the following day she achieves highest honours from the rest of her graduating class.
With a free day before her first work shift, River calls Dorian out for lunch at the Bistro. When he gets there she feels an uncomfortable flip in the pit of her stomach. She can’t even look at him without feeling a little fuzzy. She’d known early on that she had a school girl crush on him, but apparently she hasn’t grown out of it.
If he notices her blush he doesn’t mention it, instead acting like the perfect gentleman. “So Mayor Elizabeth Evans has decided to buy the entire exhibit!” He talks about work too much, but River can tell he’s excited so she feigns interest and lets him continue. “This means I’ll be staying in town, hopefully for good! I’ve already sent a courier to grab the rest of my equipment from Egypt and maybe I can start looking for a permanent place to stay tomorrow!”
“Maybe I can help you with house hunting.” She offers.
“I’d like that a lot.”
Neither of them notice Pablo Evans watching them from next to the bistro.
“I’m really glad you’ll be staying in town.” River continues. “I was sort of hoping we could get to know each other better. You’re a lot of fun, and it’s nice to talk to you.”
He smiles but then hesitates, as if thinking about something. Whatever it is he eventually makes a decision. “You want to go down to Port-a-Party? Let’s get some drinks.”
River’s counting this as a date now, not just an outing.
Liam tries being sweet whenever he and Serena are home alone, but today she’s distracted.
She tells him about Pablo’s visit.
He’s silent for a long moment. “You’re sure he wasn’t just trying to trick us?”
“I wish, Li. But think about it, all the things we’ve tried to ignore. Is it really a stretch that she’s moved into thieving as a career? She’s keeping it from us because she know we wouldn’t approve.”
“Of course we don’t approve! Serena what in the Watcher’s name are we going to do about this?”
“We’ll need to be the bad cops, do you think you’re up for that?”
He isn’t sure, but he knows he’ll have to try. No giving in this time.
At the club, River has no idea of what’s waiting back home. All she knows is Dorian’s the sweetest guy she’s ever met, and this has to be more than a crush. He has to go sign papers up at city hall tomorrow for the art gallery transfer, but River doesn’t quite want to say goodnight.
So she kisses him, grabbing his arm so he won’t pull away.
“I know I’m being a bit forward, but seeing as you’re staying in town and I’m not an annoying teenager...” She trails off, not knowing what else to say.
His face is serious, almost painfully so and for a moment River worries she’s gone too far.
“River, I’d like to be with you, but you don’t know much about me.”
“I know you’re mature, kind, and have a good head on your shoulders.”
He doesn’t crack a smile. “That isn’t the only thing that matters. I’m not... like you.”
“It’s the only thing that matters to me.” She smiles, taking his hands in hers. “Can’t we give this a try? Please?”
He gives in. “Alright. Because I want this too.”
Liam’s waiting when she gets home.
“So working at the Art Gallery? Really? Pablo dropped by to tell us his story, and frankly River to say I’m disappointed would be an understatement.”
“Don’t even try it. Your mother and I are sick and tired of all your lies. Tell me the truth, are you or are you not working for Pablo?”
She sighs. “I am.”
“So you’ve been lying to us from the start.”
He shakes his head in disbelief. “We love you, River. But I swear if you continue working as a thief you will no longer be welcome under this roof.”
River heads to bed feeling defeated, but she knows one thing. She’s not giving up her job, she can’t. Once you’re in, you’re in. So her only option is to be very very careful. As long as she doesn’t get arrested she’ll be fine, right?
And Gen three has begun!
A couple of notes:
- Pablo's an ass
- River's gorgeous
- Brooke really needs to leave her room sometime so she'll make it into the actual story before her YA birthday...
- I regret putting the blue tips in Dorian's hair. : (