Nalin grows up! He inherits grandpa Nico’s hair colour, Fawn’s eyes and Gem’s facial features.
Jade and Markus go to visit their son... their newlywed son!
Once inside, Destiny Grimm-Harris informs her mother in law that she’ll soon be a grandmother.
Outside Maven tells his father the same thing. “We were already living together and engaged when she started feeling sick, so as soon as the doctor confirmed she was pregnant we had a private ceremony. It was all really quick since she wanted to be married before she started showing. I’m sorry for not inviting you, we weren’t really uh... thinking straight.
Markus understands well enough, and wishes his son all the best. His only wish for now is to still be here in time to hold his first grandchild, but he’s already 92. Does he really have enough time left?
Destiny isn’t even showing, but Maven is already planning on ways for them to conceive their second... interesting ways. (It’s always the quiet ones)
Back at home Fawn starts feeling nauseous again. She likes babies but the pregnancy part sort of sucks.
At this level of the game, Gem should only be focusing on gene therapy and private consultations with his patients. But he became a doctor to help people, not be stuck in an office all day. So when a volunteer is needed for the weekly vaccination clinic his name is first on the list.
When things slow down he even gets to socialize a bit. Briar Goodfellow is Fawn’s younger brother, he informs Gem that his parents are out on a second honeymoon but should be back soon if Fawn wants to talk to them. Apparently she’s been calling the house often to see if they’ve arrived back yet. Briar didn’t have an arrival date until this morning.
... Well that explains where Marise got her love of animals from. (Yes Mr. Finger-Eater is still alive and well)
Fawn wouldn’t consider herself a stay at home mother, it just so happens that she works from home and only writes when inspiration hits. So much of her time is spent hugging her son and teaching him to walk and talk.
She loves him with all her heart, perhaps even more than she loves Gem and that feeling of commitment to her son is almost scary in its power over her. Did her parents feel this way about her? No wonder they were so sad every time she asked about her wings and when they would appear. It wasn’t their fault she wasn’t born with them. Oh they’ll be so happy to see her now!
But first, she gets confirmation on that second baby bump.
Writing is a lot harder than she ever imagined it would be, but she enjoys the stress. If she doesn’t struggle, her writing can’t improve or speak to the masses.
Plus there’s one really easy way to get rid of stress fast... and Gem certainly does NOT object to it. (But he does wish she’d remember to close the door)
Nalin’s a good little boy. He’s perfectly fine entertaining himself and loves playing with his buildings blocks.
Sometimes gramma Jade takes him out into the backyard. There’s an open pool right next to him but she keeps an eye on him, ready to jump at any time if he gets up to explore. Instead he just stays wherever she plopped him down, and stares at one of Nico’s old topiaries.
Dragons be cool.
Destiny has started showing.
Why is Maven shirtless, you ask? I counter with my own question... why not? Shut it and enjoy the fanservice.
At long last, Briar calls Fawn to tell her their parents are home from their trip. Finally! He hasn’t told them about her wings only because he doesn’t know. Her siblings can’t keep a secret to save their lives.
Pip can’t really hide his shock when he sees his human daughter with very obvious fairy wings. They don’t match his or Dahlia’s, but the colour is almost enough to trick him into wondering if she wasn’t actually adopted. But she was, and she doesn’t know...
“Well, daddy? What do you think? Gem’s aunt helped me get them! Isn’t it great?”
He can’t make himself smile no matter how much he tries to. Eventually he just gives up. “It’s great, love, but I think you need to go show your mother.”
Fawn heads inside, not noticing her father’s discomfort. She finds her mother in the living room and heads over. “Mom! Look! Jade helped me get my wings! Isn’t it great?”
It’s perverse, actually, but Dahlia has sense enough not to say that to her daughter. “Fawn you can’t have wings... it isn’t right! I respect our alchemist as much as the rest of the community, but I cannot accept her method of giving our gifts, or natural talents to whomever asks for them. You were not born a fairy and you should not have wings or our magic.”
Fawn’s confused. “But mom, I should have been born a fairy. You guys both have your wings and so do Briar and Lily! Jade just fixed what should have happened in the first place.”
“Fawn, you aren’t a fairy because you aren’t our daughter.”
Fawn feels... something. It’s like someone dropped a block of ice into her stomach. She’s sick, trembling and angry all at once. “Excuse me?”
Dahlia didn’t realize she’s said those words out loud until they were already out, so there's absolutely no going back now. “Love, I’m so sorry... I was pregnant when a woman moved next door to us, Linda Rodgers-Van Gould as she’s called now. She wanted a child so badly so we helped her plan an adoption and when the baby came we switched hers with ours just because we thought it would be funny.”
Fawn does not take the news well. “You did WHAT? You’re Sophie’s parents? And you just watched her grow up so close by and didn’t care to talk to her? To know her?”
“I gave birth to her, doesn’t mean she was my daughter. We wanted you.”
“So what! What YOU wanted isn’t important, mom! She was your daughter! And how dare you raise me that way? I spent my entire life thinking I’d done something wrong, like I was some kind of failure! Didn’t you ever stop to think about how this would affect me? Affect Sophie?”
“Fawn, I’m a fairy. And now you are too. Stop being such a stick in the mud! Pip and I made a mistake but we did try our best. I wanted to just give you back once when you were little but I thought about it and decided you were too cute. So be happy we at least raised you as our own.”
Dahlia leaves the room in a huff as Fawn struggles to hold back tears. A few minutes later she leaves, but she doesn’t head home.
Hours later, Gem gets a call from Dahlia Goodfellow. “Um... no, can you slow down?.. What did you say?... No Fawn isn’t home I thought she was still over there?... What exactly did you say to make her angry- Okay okay no need to yell, you don’t have to tell me... sure, I’ll call you as soon as she gets home.
He glances at his watch, eleven pm and Fawn hasn’t even called... all of a sudden he’s feeling sick to his stomach. If she isn’t at her parents’ house than where is she?
The waterfall has always calmed Fawn down on the nights she couldn’t sleep. The house she grew up in was only a few minutes walk away and some nights she’d sneak out here and sleep on the ground. Her parents never caught her, but now she’s beginning to wonder if they would have even cared.
How could they have kept that from her? How could they have lied to her for so long and still made her believe they cared? And Sophie... Fawn can’t help but wonder how her life would have been different if the switch had never happened. Would she have been raised like a princess the way Sophie was? Would Gem have fallen for her right away instead of after they were adults? Or would she have lost Gem to Sophie? Should she tell Sophie? Or Gem? She’d have to tell Gem sooner or later, they had no secrets from each other and she couldn’t hurt him like that.
She lays down on the soft grown outside of the tiny fairy house by the falls. She could shrink down and sleep inside it but it doesn’t feel right. She’ll sleep outside tonight on her own.
As she slips into sleep not a single thought is spared for the possible effects the cold night air will have on her unborn baby, nor does she think about how worried Gem must be right now.
Well that was a bit of a downer. Please have this picture of Gator getting back at Gem for entering his personal bubble back in the library when they were teens: