Chapter 50 Growing up

Merrilee’s POV

Mason and Robbie have become teens. Wow, so much has happened since they have been born, but I swear I don’t know where the time has gone. Robbie ages up first.

Mason is next. The boys are so sweet as children, I’ll miss them being little.

They both decide to get part time jobs instead of after school activities.  We bought the local grocery store from the previous owners when we moved to Lucky Palms and both boys start working there after school.

I told them as long as they keep their grades up that they can continue to work after school, but school comes first.  They are going to pool their money and buy a car to share.  I’m sure their father and I  will help them out if they do well with school and their jobs.

Macy and Manda are growing like weeds. Manda seems to have no problem with her condition, but we have kept her pretty secluded from other people, we don’t want anyone to make her to feel different. I’m sure that will be more of a problem when they start school soon.  Their birthdays are just around the corner. Rob thinks we should discuss the cure with Manda when she gets a little older, this is where we disagree. I think we should just give it to her and make her normal like her sister.  “Merrilee, you don’t want her to think that there is something wrong with her.  We need to give her the option. If she wants to take the cure, then great. If not, we have to learn to live with it, just like she will.”, he says rationally. I just don’t agree, I want to give her the cure and forget all this ever happened.

I was so excited to learn of Lauren and Chad’s engagement and wedding.  Chad is a first class guy and I know he will take good care of her and Lance.

Chad wants to adopt Lance. There is a ton of red tape though at the courthouse they have to sort through.  Normally, they would have to get the biological father to sign off but since he is no where to be found, they have to search for him. If they get no response within 3 months then they can proceed with the adoption.  Part of the problem is that we don’t want to find Moe and we really don’t want him to find us, so it’s a big problem.  Of course, if he does show up the police will arrest him, hopefully before he can cause any more harm to anyone.  They have to post an advertisment in the local paper and 2 other papers. Of course, they put it in Barnacle Bay paper and also the Sunset Valley paper. Moe and Rob are originally from Sunset Valley, so it makes sense that he may go back “home”. I keep a close eye on the papers.

Rob asks me if we need to do the same thing. Does he need to adopt our twins,  but when the twins were born, I put Rob on the birth certificate as the father. So, as long as Moe doesn’t show up and question paternity, we are fine.

The next several weeks pass and I’m really on edge. I just have a bad feeling that Moe will read the paper and want to cause more trouble for us.  Rob says, “He won’t risk going to jail. He knows he has a list of charges against him. He doesn’t want to show up and get taken straight to jail.”  “I know, Rob. But, who says he is going to just show up and annouce that he is in town?  He will be more underhanded than that, he will sneak into town and we may not know until it is too late. We have such a great life here in Lucky Palms. I don’t want Moe to ruin it. Now, I’m back to feeling uneasy and constantly looking behind my back. “, I cry.  We hire a couple security guards to keep an eye on the house and the boys as they travel back and forth to school and activities. They are always very discreet. We don’t want the boys to feel afraid, plus we don’t want extra attention from the media.  We’ve blended in really well in LP, there are several celebrity families here already, so it isn’t like the people in town aren’t used to security.  I just don’t want to make it obvious that something is going on.  The local police force also is more equipped to handle emergencies than BB police were.  Coming from such a small town, LP seems like a metropolis.

Rob pulls in the driveway with a new car for the boys.  They have both been working so hard, keeping their grades up and working at the Grocery Store.

Rob decides to go ahead and get the car for them and let them use their money for gas and maintenance.   When the boys get off the bus they are so excited!  Rob offers to teach the boys to drive, they flip a coin and Mason wins so they jump in the car and take off. It’s a rocky start, but they finally get down the road.

I’ll leave the teaching them to drive to Rob. I don’t think my heart can take it. I walk back in the house and work on finishing teaching Manda to walk.  She is so close to walking, it’s really cute how she wobbles along.  Macy took off really quickly with walking.  Potty Training is not going so well with either girl. I hope we get it done before they age up.

We plan to age the girls up early.  They have both learned to walk, talk, and potty training successfully.  Even though they will be aging up before Lance, we want to see if the cure will work for Manda.   We have a small family get together to celebrate.  I invite Lauren, Chad, and Lance and then Robin and Merri also come over.  We set out 2 birthday cakes and the girls blow both candles out at the same time.  I hold my breathe as they spin around. Part of me prays that Manda will be normal, not a ghost when she opens her eyes.

Both girls are beautiful, Manda is still a ghost.

She looks at her sister and then down at herself and asks, “What’s  wrong with me?”, she says.  My heart breaks for my beautiful girl.  I go to her and hug her close, “Absolutely nothing! You are one of the prettiest girls I’ve ever seen.”  She looks at me with tears in her eyes and smiles.  Her sister hugs her and they run off to play.

Rob comes over to me, “Are you ok? She will be fine.  We will let her enjoy her day and then talk to her about the cure, if you want.”, he says.  The next morning, we keep Manda and Macy home from school.

“You probably have noticed that you girls look a little different from each other.  Manda was born with a condition that makes her look like a ghost. You are not a ghost, Manda.  We have something that may cure you.  You have to tell us that you want to try it though. We don’t want to force  you to do something you don’t want to do.  If you want to stay the way you are, you can. It is completely up to you.”, Rob says to the girls.  The girls look at each other and giggle.  “What is the cure?”, Manda says quietly.  “It’s just some special food that you eat.  Mommy can make it and all you have to do is eat it up!”, Rob says. I follow Manda into her bedroom and pull out a book.  After I finish reading her the story, she looks up at me and says ,”I want to try the cure, Mommy.”  I kiss her forehead and say, “Ok, baby. We will do it tomorrow.  Sleep well, my sweet girl”

The next morning,  I get up early to start cooking the cure for Manda.  Rob has been working on gathering all the ingredients over the past several weeks.  I spread everything out and have a flash of terror as I remember the last time I tried making this.

I hope that it works.  I’m afraid that since Manda was born this way, it may not work for her.  The doctor couldn’t say for sure, just that it wouldn’t hurt to try it. I peek in the oven and get a whiff of a familiar smell. It looks good so far.

Everyone gathers in the dining room. Everyone tries not to act like it is a big deal, but I’m sure they are all as nervous as I am.  Manda slowly takes a bite and says, “It’s take kinda funny, but not bad!”

Manda finishes her plate and stands up, “I feel tingly all over!”, she giggles.  A multicolored  light starts radiating from her center. She starts hopping around, “Yay, look at me!”, she laughs.  We all start giggling with her. She is such a funny girl.  She holds her hands out and you can tell it is working.  In a bright flash, she turns around. I reach down and pull her into my arms. “My sweet girl, look how beautiful you are! How do you feel? Are you ok?”, I say.

I can’t believe how sweet she looks. You couldn’t really see her features that well before, she looks a little different than her sister.  Everyone gathers around her, everyone trying to hug her at once. She laughs, “One at a time!!”, she giggles.  Her twin sister, Macy runs to her and hugs her tight. “Now we really are twins.”, She says.

The girls run outside and start playing on the playground in the backyard.  “Should I take her to the doctor for a checkup now?”, I ask Rob.  “I think she’s fine, let’s just see how she does tonight and then we will decide.”, he responds. We walk outside and sit and watch the happy girls playing.

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