Rodney offended just about every officer on his
staff by walking out of a conference to ensure he
would not be late for dinner. He had promised
Callista, but more than that he did not want to
leave Sierra alone with three very different girls
who shared one thing in common ... they could be a
handful. As he descended his shuttle he noticed the
presence of the Mandalorian ship and he worried that
he would arrive to the find the girl present, thus
adding the the noise and chaos of his estate. He
shook his head, drawing a deep breath, before
walking down the winding path from the landing
platform towards the estate. He paused at the
doorway, closing his eyes, as he did his best to
collect himself for the whirlwind he expected to
find on the other side of the door. "Girls, I'm
home," he declared, triumphantly, with his best
smile, as he crossed the threshold into the ground
level of his estate.
It had been a
rather eventful day at the Rodney estate. No sooner
had El-Nay made her exit did the girls stir awake
and set forth on a second round of insanity. When
Claudius arrived home, the house was actually ...
not that bad! The family's cleaner droid had been
pushed to the max today, but it continued to get the
job done. Sierra had rounded Ewwiekewwieikkie and
Callista into the kitchen while she cooked dinner.
Her secret? She'd made a clay for the girls with
various pieces of shiny plastic inside of it. She
felt it would keep Ewwiekewwieikkie amused and what
kid hated space age Play-Doh? Callista looked like
she was in need of a bath. She'd eaten spaghetti for
lunch and now her cute, chubby cheeks were tinted
red. One could see noodles decorating her hair
despite the fact that Sierra had put it in an updo.
As dirty as she and her clothing was, the crown that
Claudius had given her was still spotless. She had
been wearing it with pride all day.
When she heard
the voice of her husband, Sierra felt *very* happy
and relieved. Though she enjoyed all the children,
it had been a long day. She removed the pan holding
their nerf steaks from the stove. She had made
'brownies' for Callista and Ewwiekewwieikkie, which,
in reality, where sweetened by potatoes and sneakily
filled with healthy veggies and fruits. Sierra was
desperate to get something inside those two besides
sweets. It was Callista who first stopped what she
was doing, climbed down from her chair, and darted
across the estate as rapidly as her little legs
could carry her. "Uncle! Uncle! Uncle! Uncle! I
missed you!" The little girl gave him a big bantha
hug, complete with a cute little growl. Her chin
rested on him as she looked upward. "How was work?"
She asked. "Did you get to ride the turbolift? Was
it cool? I had s'getti today. Do you like s'getti?
Me and Ewwie played lots!" The little girl reported
to him in rapid fire.
down and picked up the excited Callista, but as he
raised back up he felt a twinge of pain in the small
of his back that he knew he would feel later. "Work
was good. Yes, I rode in the turbolift. Yes, I like
spaghetti," he said, respond to her rapid fire
questioning that was intense as any ISB
interrogation. "Been teaching her your questioning
techniques, Sierra?" he asked, as he walked further
into the house still carrying Callista. He was
hungry and wanted to ask what was for dinner, but he
assumed if that was one of the first things out of
his mouth he would get *the* look ... or worse. He
was glad to be home. Until...
Ewwiekewwieikkie came running with all of the speed
of a train, bounding uncontrollably towards the man
she considered her father. "Daddy!" she announced,
still covered in sauce and pasta, with a pot on top
of her head like a helmet. She leapt into the air,
sending him and Callista to the ground with a
reckless pounce. "Are you hungry? I saved you some!"
she said, before taking the pot off her head to
reveal equal parts strands of pasta and strands of
blue fur. "I helped make it," she said, as she
revealed her pasta alla Ewwie. "Well. Are you gonna
eat some?" she said, practically panting with
excitement as she watched for his approval.
smiled. "I give you some in your lunch tomorrow!" It
made her feel like a big girl helping make her
uncle's lunches. She giggled loudly as he picked her
up. She nuzzled her messy cheeks against his face.
"I love you!" She was so happy. In his arms, he'd
feel how she was shaking excitedly. Or was that the
kitchen emerged Sierra. She smiled. "Nope. I can't
take credit. The girl is a natural." Sierra had
dealt with so many questions today. What is pasta
made out of? Why did she do x? Why did she do y?
Children are never ending question machines.
Ewwiekewwieikkie joined the party as she always
does: hardcore. Sierra watched as she leapt and took
out Claudius and Callista. Callista was giggling
even louder than before. She squirmed on top of her
uncle. The little girl wasn't shy. She showed
Claudius how good the pasta was by sticking her hand
in the pot and eating some rather furry pasta. "Mmmm!
Ewwie is a good cook!" Both of the girls were
providing peer pressure.
collected Callista off of Claudius by tickling her
until she gave in. "Alright, alright. It's my turn.
Go wash up for dinner, girls." She set Callista on
her feet and watched the little girl go darted up
several stairs. Callista turned around. "Ewwie!" She
squeaked, awaiting for her loyal friend to join her.
her hands to Claudius to help him back on his feet.
"I think I need a vacation from my vacation." She
said with a laugh. "How was it today?"
looked up at Sierra from his position on the ground,
relieved that Ewwiekewwieikkie had been submitted
with tickling. "I thought my day might have been
worse than yours, although now I seriously have my
doubts," he said, once Callista and Ewwiekewwieikkie
had fled the scene. He leaned forward, trying to get
up, but failed ... miserably. He groaned, feeling he
was getting up there in years, before trying to get
up once again. "Sierra ... Sierra I can't get up.
I've hurt my back," he confessed, in total
embarrassment to the point his cheeks began to flush
red. He offered up his hand to her, desperate to get
up off the floor.
She laughed as
she ran her hand through the pieces of her hair that
had fallen out of her pony tail. "I'm sure it was
worse for you. I didn't have to deal with
Meham'ohorovi'cloca." Sierra took his hands in hers
and slowly helped pull him back up to his feet. She
wrapped her arm around his waist to help support
him. "Come on you, let me take a look at it." She
saw how embarrassed he was. Though she saw no reason
for him to feel that way, she tried to be extra warm
and sweet to him to make him feel comfortable once
more. She deposited her husband on the closest
couch, then disappeared briefly to retrieve her
handy dandy first aid kit. It was becoming more
extensive now that there was a young child living in
their home. Sierra returned and nuzzled her way
behind him. Her hands inched up his uniform. She was
beginning to feel more like a medical doctor than a
mental doctor, but the human body had always
interested her. "What happened today?" She asked
so dependent on Sierra at this point that he could
not have made it to the couch without her. "Nothing
happened," he said, as he settled onto the couch
while she undressed him. "I prefer the days when
something happens ... even if it's bad," he said to
her, before leaping slightly at her touch.
"Listening to battle reports is at least somewhat
interesting. Listening to officers find a dozen
different ways to tell me nothing happened is a form
of torture," he said, as he tried to relax into her
touch. "Zevrin was not even awake for most of it. I
can't say I blamed her. I always almost envious of
her," he complained, as gradually she began to take
his pain away. "You better get used to this, my
love. I'm not getting any younger," he told her,
with a smirk, before leaning over to place a kiss
upon her in his way of saying 'thank you'.
softly worked over his back. She found the problem
in his lower back, a place where stress tended to
ride. She guessed that it was a minor injury to the
muscle, otherwise the pain would be much worse. Her
hands moved into her kit while listening to him talk
about his day. "You've got to perfect the art of
sleeping with your eyes open, my love." Sierra
chuckled. "That does sound like torture. I'm sorry
it was such a dry day. Never fear, there's enough
excitement around here to counter all the bore." She
squeezed him with her legs which were extended on
either side of him. Sierra selected a special patch
to place on his back. The bacta would help the
injury heal and the other components would make the
pain go away. She briefly stopped to share a kiss
with him. Her arms wrapped around him. She loved him
so much. She'd do anything for him, as she had
proved on multiple occasions. When she released him,
her hands met with his upper back and began to rub
him. There were too many knots, too much stress.
"Don't worry. I'll keep putting you back together
forever, Claudius. I'm pretty sure that was in our
wedding vows." Sierra teased.
There's something I want to show you." One of her
hands removed from his back. It felt alone the
surface of the couch seat beside them, then drove
into the area between the seats where she found her
datapad covered in blue fur. Blowing off the fur,
she accessed a file and placed it on top of his leg.
Before him, he'd see Sierra's concept art for
Bruce's room. Given their joint love for astrology,
there was really only one choice: a space-themed
room. It included a mural featuring some of the
planets within the Ringali Shell oversector. Of
course, it was a rough draft. "Time will pass
quickly. I thought we should start brainstorming on
our son's room." Both hands resumed her slow
asked, wondering what it could possibly have been.
When he took the datapad from her he looked at her
plans for their son's room, which is something he
never thought possible. A tear formed in the corner
of his eye as he looked over her design, struggling
to find any words to reply with. "It's ... it's
wonderful," he told her, before offering the datapad
back to her. "Yes. Time does seem to be moving
quicker. It feels like Zara will be giving birth any
day now," he said, perhaps an indelicate subject to
bring up ... particularly while her hands were on a
sensitive part of his body ... but a subject that
was nevertheless on his mind.
She held her
breath nervously. In her mind, Bruce's room had
always been clear. It had to be astrology. She had
taken some time to herself to soothe the necessity
to nest by taking the first steps to making their
son's room a reality. Sierra grinned. It made her
happy that he liked it. She took the datapad and set
it back on the couch. Her hands remained delicate
and sweet on him despite the mention of Zara. She
wanted to meet Marcus' twins. Everyone had been
anticipating their arrival for some time. "You're
right about that. It feels like it was just
yesterday when we saw them at the baby shower. We
could invite them over once the children are born
and an adequate amount of time has passed. I'd like
to see them." Though she didn't know how Zara would
feel about that. Sierra's anger had gone to a simmer
as far as all that went.
still furious that Zara had shot his wife, but he
did not want to spend the evening badmouthing a
pregnant woman. "I do not think it appropriate to
have *her* in this house," he said to her, as she
continued to work his back to wondrous effect. "I've
been avoiding this question since I landed," he
said, as he slowly turned his head to look at her
with an apprehensive look. "I saw the Mandalorian
ship. Is you know who skulking about?" he asked, as
he raised his eyebrows, looking at her eagerly for a
response. He wondered if the kitchen wall had been
repaired, but with all Sierra had going on with the
three girls he did not want to ask.
rose to look him in the eyes. Uh oh. What kind of
question? "Oh. El-Nay? No. I asked her to deliver
some things to Marcus for the coronation. Her ship
is here for us to use it on our trip to see New
Alderaan. It won't raise any flags. I allowed her to
borrow an Imperial ship...And yes, the kitchen wall
is fixed." If she wasn't an avid multitasker, things
would easily get ahead of her. Thankfully, all she
needed to do was summon someone else to fix the
kitchen. "She even entered through the front door
this time, no additional damage." She snuggled
against his back. It was nice to live in routine
again. She knew that he'd purposely come home on
time for dinner...yet their dinner was in the
kitchen cooling while she spent a quiet, calm moment
in that thing?!" Claudius exclaimed, in a
combination of shock and disbelief. "Are you sure it
can survive the flight to the Outer Rim?" he asked,
suddenly feeling very apprehensive about the voyage.
As he listened to his wife stick up for the
Mandalorian he realized a bond had been formed, and
that it was best for him to simply go along with it
and stop arguing. He found his wife to be a very
kind and loyal woman, and those were two skills he
wished to preserve in her rather than criticize at
every turn. He nodded several times, letting her
know he was committed to going with her on the
unlikely vessel. "When are we leaving? And, do you
think Drusilla is suited to watch the girls?" he
asked, wondering if she had even gotten out of bed
Was she sure?
Not really... "Well, it's already been out there
once. I think it'll survive another flight. El-Nay
seems to take relatively good care of it. It'll be
fine." She placed a kiss to the middle of his back
upon finishing her massage. She would never breathe
a word of what had happened in the Alderaan debris
with El-Nay. If the ship failed, she didn't know
what she'd do. "When are we leaving..?" She thought
'never' was a good answer. "I need to check on Dru.
I haven't seen her much today..." That was a problem
she hadn't decided to tackle today. Slowly, Sierra
scooted out from behind him. "I'll go see her. You
should eat something. I cooked." She winked, rising
to her feet. She headed upstairs towards Drusilla's
room, realizing that someday they were going to need
to install a turbolift in this house! Their son had
decided it was now time to be active inside of her
womb and focused himself on jumping (or something)
on her bladder.
on the door of her youngest stepdaughter. "Drusilla?
Can I come in?" Even if she said no, Sierra made her
way inside her room. The girl couldn't remain locked
room was filled with jizz music as Max Rebo was
blaring from her speakers. "Oh. If it isn't the
*former* Duchess of Delaya," she said,
condescendingly, from her position in bed where she
was surfing the HoloNet. "What do you want? Come to
collect the rest of the gems I saved to help our
family?" she asked, as she sat up in the bed,
sliding her pillow over a particularly shiny diamond
she did not want to risk losing. She did not know
what to make of her new stepmother. She had to admit
that her father did seem happily, but that was never
important to her. She had lost any hope at a title
of importance and she blamed Sierra for it, and this
came across in all their recent encounters.
She stopped to
turn down the music slightly so she could actually
hear Drusilla speak. Sierra knew what to expect at
this point. Her young step-daughter had decided that
she was at fault, and that was fine. She wasn't
affected by the reference to her former title.
"That's stepmother *former* Duchess of Delaya,
missy." She sat at the foot of her bed. "For all the
effort you put into transporting those gems here,
you can have them. However, I did find this in the
living room." Sierra adjusted so she could get her
hand into one of her pocket. She withdrew a gorgeous
diamond necklace and laid it on on the bed like a
peace offering. She looked at Dru and then let out a
long sigh. "You know, I've been planning a special
surprise for your birthday. Given the
circumstances... I'll let you in on the secret."
gasped when she spotted the diamond necklace, and
moved towards it as swiftly as Ewwiekewwieikkie
moved towards cake. She held them up into the light,
watching the light refract them just to ensure
Sierra had not slipped her costume jewelry. They
were real! She wasted no time in placing them upon
her neck, further ignoring Sierra, and then moving
towards the mirror in the corner of the room. "It's
a start ... a *good* start," she said, as she struck
a pose and turned to face her stepmother. "A
birthday surprise?" she asked, unable to resist, as
he surged towards the woman. She grabbed Sierra's
arm and began to shake her, her eyes lighting up
boldly. "What secret? Tell me! Tell me!" she said,
in a shrill whine that only a parent could tolerate.
There was a
lot of patchwork to do with Drusilla. Sierra didn't
want to be a villainous kind of stepmother. She
wanted to be just as good to Dru, Jelena, and
Ewwiekewwieikkie as she would be to her own blood
son. She felt she was making some movement in the
right direction with her youngest. "I've seen the
matching bracelet to the necklace. I'm sure it's
around the house somewhere. I'll leave it in here
when I find it." She smiled warmly. Unexpectedly,
Dru grabbed her arm and began to shake her. Eeee!
She chuckled. She really had immersed herself in
this 'motherhood' thing. "I know Max Rebo." She told
her. "We played together on Alderaan and Delaya
several times. He's a friend. Since we missed his
concert on Spira, I wanted to make it up to you.
He's agreed to come to the estate and play a private
show for your birthday."
bracelet?" Drusilla asked, bringing her hand up to
her chin as she considered the present. "Always give
a bracelet before a necklace. A necklace is much
better," he said, as her hand gripped the diamond
necklace, clutching it, and stroking one of the
diamonds. When Sierra mentioned Max Rebo her jaw
dropped and her eyes went wide. "Get out!" she said
excitedly, as she took both of her hands and
playfully shoved the woman. "*You* know Max Rebo?"
she asked, as if she did not believe her. Sierra
could not possibly be *that* cool, or could she? "My
birthday? That's in forever. No, I can't wait. I
want it now!" she whined, as she folded her arms in
front of her chest and pouted dramatically.
"Thank you for
the advice, milady." Sierra nodded her head. Dru's
reaction to her Max Rebo reveal was *amazing*. This
was the single time in Sierra's life where she was
going to be able to make her stepdaughter so happy.
She grinned cheerfully. "Yup! I do! Look on the
HoloNet, I'm sure you can find recordings of me
playing with him. I'm not joking!" Her mother had
pushed her to become an accomplished violinist. It
was part of her plan to make her 'desirable' or
something. Her whining was met with more laughter.
"Considering the circumstances, I might be able to
move the concert up. Would this weekend be better?"
The young woman winked. "You know, you have a drum
set. If you wanted to learn ... I'd teach you." She
wrapped an arm around Drusilla's shoulders, drawing
her close. "I'm truly sorry about what happened with
the Duchy. That isn't something I can fix, as much
as I wish I could. However, I promise you that I
will see to it that you marry someone with a title.
Someone who will treat you like the princess that
you are. In the meantime, you're going to need to
figure out what you'll wear when Max Rebo comes."
"Vids or it
didn't happen," Drusilla said to Sierra skeptically,
as she moved back towards her HoloNet unit and
searched for the terms Max Rebo and Sierra Dakkar.
Her face lit up when she saw results, but her
excitement soon turned to jealousy. "Since it's *my*
birthday he'll have to let me play with him. Isn't
that true, stepmummy?" she asked, as she continued
to look over the HoloNet. "This weekend, but it's
only..." she began, her incessant whining seeming
relentless. "Fine, fine, fine. I suppose I can wait
a few days," she said, before allowing herself to
flop dramatically backwards onto her bed.
Unfortunately she landed right on the diamond she
attempted to conceal, which caused her to let out a
shrill cry. "Since you cost me a Duchy I feel it's
only fair you find me *at least* a Prince to marry,"
she said, before leaping up from the bed when the
subject turned to fashion. "Oh, stepmummy, I simply
haven't a thing to wear. Perhaps you can allow me to
go to New Calamar to buy something new?" she said,
her eyes lighting up in a way that you could almost
see credit symbols in her pupils.
Sierra had no
problem with her checking out the authenticity of
her words. She watched her lit up ... and then turn
green. Sierra blinked. "Um, I suppose you're right."
Did Drusilla actually play any instruments? She had
seen some in her room, but they looked untouched. It
seemed they had reached a compromise as far as Max
Rebo went. As she let out a cry, Sierra jumped up
like she was ready to strike down whatever had hurt
her...oh! It was a diamond. Those things were
everywhere!! "A Prince. You make a hard bargain,
deary. I'll see what I can do." Her eyes turned to
the open door of Drusilla's massive closet. The girl
had more clothes than she had ever had in her
lifetime. "How about we go together tomorrow? I
think I need to burn these clothes after what
they've been through today." She pinched the stained
material of her top then released it. The girl
before her was practically drooling over the idea of
going shopping in New Calamar. It was something that
they hadn't done in awhile. "Does that sound like a
Drusilla whined as her eyes scanned the chronometer
... some of the stores might still be open. "Ugh.
Fine," she pouted, as she exhaled in a deep huff.
She would make her pay for the delay by purchasing
twice as much as she had originally planned. "Wait.
Does Ewwiekewwieikkie get to go too?" she asked,
apprehensively, as the thought of the Squib
ransacking the stores before she got to shop was of
very real concern to her. "The tiara that papa gave
what's her name ... does she get to keep that? Or
just wear it while she's here?" she pressed, as she
realized that her adopted sister was in the middle
of a sleepover that had infringed upon her own
precious beauty sleep.
and I are going out tonight, so it needs to wait.
Besides, we both know all the good stores are
closed. Do you *really* want to shop alongside the
commoners?" Sierra knew that her wallet would be
hurting by the end of the day. She sighed. "I'll see
what I can do about making it just a date between
the two of us..." Though how she would manage that
was questionable. One problem at a time, Sierra, she
reminded herself. "Dru! She gets to keep it.
Callista doesn't have much, remember? Your father
gave her the most exquisite item that she's ever
going to have in her life. Pity her. Let her keep
it." She was trying to speak Drusilla. "Do I need to
show you the dresses her father packed for her? Some
of them look to be... *hand-me-downs*."
"No. No ...
that's a very good point. I really can't be around
*those* people," Drusilla said, as she considered
Sierra's words carefully. "Wait. You're going out?
Does that mean I get stuck with the kids?" she let
out a groan as if she had just been shot, slumping
down melodramatically. "She gets to keep it? Are you
serious? She's not even blood? And Mug is only a
half-breed..." she went on and on and on, lamenting
her father's newfound generosity. "Hand-me-downs?
How droll," she said, as she rose up from the bed
and moved towards the window. "Oh fine. But Max Rebo
better give the performance of his life!" she
demanded, stomping her foot, before taking a seat in
make it up to you tomorrow. If nothing else, you can
take pleasure in the fact that they are going to
crash soon. Ewwiekewwieikkie looked like she was
slowing down. The little one won't be far off."
Sierra stood, still listening to Drusilla go on and
on about the family's bastard. She smiled. "Don't
worry, he will." She left Dru's room feeling like
she had made that situation better. She moved on
into her room where, sure enough, Ewwiekewwieikkie
and Callista had fallen asleep *again*. Only, the
bedsheets were covering them. One of Callista's feet
was sticking out. She could see a glob of blue fur
spaghetti on the floor beside the bed. Sierra
beamed. D'aw. It was adorable!
gathered some clothes for both her and Claudius to
wear on their insane trip to New Alderaan, then,
tiptoeing, she made her way back downstairs to meet
up with her husband. She was wearing a wide grin.
For once, she felt like she was on her Mommy A-game.
"And what is
the going rate our daughter charges for babysitting
these days, hmm? A small moon perhaps?" Claudius
asked as Sierra descended from up above, seemingly
no worse for wear. He had failed Drusilla by
allowing his parents to raise her, while he buried
himself in work to avoid grieving the loss of her
mother. Now it seemed it was his beloved Sierra that
was paying the price for his shortcomings as a
father those years ago. Once a child had been
spoiled to the extent that Drusilla had he doubted
the deed could ever be undone.
"Oh, only a shopping trip with *just* me to New
Calamir. I had to pull out the big guns to make her
happy. I brought up knowing Max Rebo and how I'd
contact him to come play for her birthday." Her nose
twitched. "And somehow she pouted her way into
making the concert this weekend. How did she do
that..?" She shook her head. "Needless to say, she
seems to be in a better mood. I could use for her to
not hate me for a little bit. The girls have already
passed out in our bed." Her smile grew as she
approached him and *gently* made her way into his
lap. She could hear music playing again from
upstairs but it barely reached their ears. "As
insane as the day has been... I kinda liked it." She
winked. She liked it much more than she was telling
"Oh dear. When
I abdicated so went my access to the treasury. I am
on a mere Grand Moff's salary now," Claudius
lamented, as he wondered how his youngest daughter
would deal with the changes their new life would
require. "You're going to get Max Rebo to perform
*this* weekend?" he scoffed, raising his arms up
dramatically. "How? A squad of Stormtroopers
abducting him?" he asked, as he shook his head at
the situation. "I suppose the ISB has their
methods," he teased her, but he had learned to never
doubt her. As she joined him on the sofa, sitting on
his lap, his arm moved around her to thoroughly
embrace her. "I'm glad. You're an excellent mother
to our children, but remember ... you'll soon have
more to deal with," he said, as he lowered his head
into her stomach. In his mind Bruce was just the
start of their new brood.
I'm aware of the shift in financials. She is allowed
to get a single dress for her special concert this
weekend... So if I don't come back from this
shopping trip, I'm sure you'll find my body
somewhere in the city." Sierra joked. "No, no. Max
Rebo is doing this because we're friends. My mother
forced me to play with his band several times in
Alderaan and Delaya. I believe she said something
along the lines of 'men won't mind your butterface
if you can play beautiful music'. Ah, what a woman."
She gave him a playful look at his ISB dig. "Hey!"
She leaned forward, nipping at his neck quickly. Her
arms wrapped around his neck. Her heart was pounding
quickly in her chest. Looking in his eyes, she
couldn't believe how happy he made her. Their family
was an incredible addition to her life. His
compliment was so sweet that she blushed. "You're
right about that. There's no way I'm going to let
you off the hook after Bruce." She looked down at
him. It was hard to believe that she was nearly upon
the halfway mark. Their son was an active little
guy. She could now feel him pretty much all the
random information, Sierra piped up like the proud
peacock she was. "Did you know he can hear things
outside of the womb now? Last time I saw him with
Doctor Tohan, he had already developed so much." Her
fingers ran through her husband's hair.
brought his hand up to gently caress her hair as she
spoke of her mother, knowing what a monster the
woman was, and how hard she had been on Sierra. When
the subject shifted to Doctor Tohan he cringed,
growing slightly uncomfortable. "How is *our* doctor
anyway?" he asked, still annoyed that Marcus and
Zara had seemingly absconded with his physician.
"Wait. You saw him again?!" he said, hurt that he
had missed the trip to Doctor Tohan and had not
gotten to see the new image. "As soon as the twins
are stable we must bring the Doctor back to the
Retributor," he said, sound as jealous and
competitive as Drusilla.
soothing to her. With his help, even Sierra's old
scars were beginning to heal. She didn't fear Rikka,
she simply hated her and wanted her to keep her
distance. "He seems to be well... Maybe a little
better than normal. I *did* see him making friends
with a lady Ithorian. I saw him after the latest
Delaya debacle. I really wish we could return him
now. Hopefully by the next appointment, he'll be
back at the Retributor. That way, we can see our son
together." She kissed his forehead, his nose, and
finally his lips. It was difficult to wait for the
arrival of Bruce. Seeing Claudius interact with the
girls, especially Callista, was melting her heart.
She pulled back suddenly from their kiss. "Remember
when you spoke to me about wanting to be a better
father to our children? I have to tell you, you're
excelling all day long. Watching you interact with
the girls...it's so obvious. You're such a loving
man to all of us. I nearly died from the sheer
cuteness of you, Callista, and Ewwiekewwieikkie this
morning." She confessed.
"Pilaq with a
lady Ithorian? Surely you jest," Claudius said, as
his mouth hang ajar from near shock at the gossip
being relayed to him. "I would like to see him
again. I am very jealous that you saw him without
me," he said, before perfecting the pout that his
daughter executed so well. "He was well?" he asked,
moving his hand down her forearm to clutch her. "You
flatter me with your kindness, my love, but it is
easy to be a good father when I have such an
excellent partner," he said, before moving his face
slowly in toward hers and interrupting their
conversation with a tender, loving kiss. "I love
you. I love all of you," he said, as the kiss broke,
and his face slowly withdrew with him looking back
at her with unconditional, undying love.
She shook her
head, "No, no! I'm jesting at all. I wonder if we're
about to gain another reliable doctor." Ooh
goodness, that pout. She tried to stay strong. The
pout got her to do things like agree to a solo
shopping trip with Drusilla and gallivant across the
galaxy. "He is. Our boy is right on schedule.
There's nothing to worry about." Her cheeks were
warmed with her feverish blush. She flattered him?
It was he who flatter her! They worked so well
together. In every way, they were made for each
other. Sierra let him draw her into the kiss. She
felt his love wash over her in the most soothing,
wonderful way. She drew in a slow breath as he spoke
to her, professing the same love to her as he had on
their wedding day. "I love you. I love all of you."
She told him sweetly. Her arms locked around him
tightly. The entirety of her body cuddled against
his. It was amazing how she had found right where