Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Chapter 40 - part 3 - Gen 2 - Tapestry

The last few days have been pretty uncomfortable.  My head went off a little.  I have been upset by the photographs that Sunny sent me, and have shut myself off.  I have been miserable, moody and quiet and I have just wanted to be left totally alone.  

My phone has been constantly bombarded with calls from River, Dad and Sunny which I have just cut straight off.  I would normally have turned my phone off completely but have had to leave it on because of work.  I have had no choice but to take the calls coming from Prelude, Rocky and Grumpy Grape.  Prelude being the amusing part, him not knowing what is going on, he like the rest of our family do not even know the photographs of Shadow exist. 

I am angry with River, Sunny and Dad for hiding the existence of the photographs from me in the first place, especially River.  I would expect that sort of thing from Dad and Sunny, but I hoped River would be a little different, I see now that obviously he is just as bad as them.  The three of them have kept trying to get to me via Crystals phone, because I will not answer my own, but I have refused to speak to them.  

In a way, I am really glad that Forrest and Granite have gone home early and are not here to see this or to bug me, because I only have had to deal with Vanilla and Crystal being around me, and that has even been hard enough for me.  If I was at home I would have shut myself away in the bedroom and everyone would know just to leave me well alone until I snap out of it.

I can see that Crystal is starting to get very upset about my sudden mood change and strange behaviour.  She has been told and well warned about how I can get, but this is the first time that she has actually experienced it, and I know it must be hard for her, especially being here alone with me.


Crystal is trying to put on a brave face and carry on as normal for Vanilla, but it is so much harder when you are not at home and in a strange place.   Crystal has had to just pretty much leave me alone and let me get on with it, and I expect that is what Dad and River have been telling her to do while they have been talking to her on the phone.  Although I know she is far from happy, and I imagine that I have made her feel worse, I have shut her out and shouted at her quite a few times to leave me alone when all she has tried to do is just talk to me normally.

After I had spent the night on the couch alone, I had been woken up by Crystal banging around the place in a really bad mood.  I just lay there and watched her, she has not spoken to me or even looked in my direction all the time that she is making breakfast for herself and Vanilla.  I think while I was lay on the couch moping during the night that I had heard Crystal crying in the bedroom, but I did not have the energy to go into her because I was too busy lay on the couch crying myself. 

Vanilla screams from her cot, so I jump up to get her.  When I walk into the room I do not get her normal smile, she just stands there staring at me quietly.  I think that she can even sense my mood and the atmosphere ... I don't like the way she is watching me warily .... I know then that I seriously have got to snap out of it, for her sake!!  


I am not really sure why I thought seeing a photograph of Shadow would be a good idea.  The moment that I opened the text and looked at it, I regretted it.  I do not know what I expected, but I seriously did not think that I would feel the way that I did.  I thought seeing a picture of him would be a comfort for me, but it was far from it!!  It might even have made things worse for me.

To me being colour blind, it is not like he looks any different to any of the other babies of that age that I have seen in photographs.  However, he was still born, so I know that he was faded when that photograph was taken, which is something I can not get my head around.  Why would they even do that!?  Take a photograph of a faded baby.

Seeing his eyes open on the photograph, shocked me, it hit me almost like a full force punch to my head, face and stomach!!  All I could stare at was his two eyes, blankly staring up at me from the photograph.  I do not understand why they did not close his eyes!!  It really hurt knowing that he was already gone, there was no life behind those eyes and he would never see the world through them.  I never expected his eyes to be open and when I saw that they were it totally freaked me out!!  Those blank staring eyes are just something else that now pesters me every time I try to close my eyes and sleep.

The photographs of Honey, as an adult, taken in my room and very visibly pregnant, also knocked me about, even more than I could have imagined.  I think I have spent more time actually staring at the photographs of Honey than I have of Shadow, because they do not freak me out half as much.  I am now beginning to think it was just better for me to be left to wander, about what they looked like, than to actually now be seeing how he actually looked when he faded and see what Honey looked like just before she did.  Seeing both the photographs of Honey and Shadow have not done me a lot of good and I am glad that Sunny only sent me the one of Shadow, I think if he had sent me the one of Vanilla and Shadow together I might have just lost my mind!!

Honey's adult photographs, in particular, are now really bugging me.  When I looked at the photograph of her being an adult for the first time, I had a very strange feeling that I had seen her like that before, even when I know that is impossible.  The last time that I saw Honey she was a teenager and lay fading on the floor in the vampberry den, but looking at her photograph now as an adult, her face it seemed so familiar to me, almost like I HAVE seen her face all grown up before that photograph.

As I continue to watch Crystal banging noisily around the kitchen, I can see the faces that she is pulling.  It is very unusual not to see Crystal with a smile on her face.  I know it is my fault, I am doing that to her, I am upsetting her because of the way that I have been acting, so I know I have to pull myself together, before I spoil and waste this vacation completely.  

I also know that I have got to stop thinking about Honey and Shadow.  I have got to try and forget about them, they have gone and I need to stop dwelling on it, let it go and get over it!!  I need to get on with my life before it starts to drag me down anymore than it already is and has been doing,  and before I ruin everything for myself and everyone else, especially Crystal and Vanilla.   

I get up off the couch and try to apologize to Crystal, but she just brushes me off and continues with what she is doing.  Telling me I stink and should take a shower.  I do not argue, I just do as I am told, realizing I have just been lying around the beach house and sleeping in the same clothes for the past few days like a total bum!!

After Vanilla has finished eating her breakfast, and I have plastered her in sun screen, I take her along with my guitar down onto the beach to play.  I need to keep practicing my solo single that is due out in a few weeks, so that I have got it word and note perfect ready for when the live performances start.  I still have to pinch myself sometimes, still not really believing that this is really happening to me.

I had asked Crystal to come with us down onto the beach, but she had snapped that she was too busy cleaning the kitchen, so I left her too it.  I can see she is not cleaning normally, but scrubbing, so I can tell she is mad with me, and I know it is my own fault!!  I leave her hoping that she might start to calm down a little if I give her some space and she can see that I am acting normally again, instead of moping.  

Vanilla amuses me as she sits on the sand laughing at me.   She will sit and watch me playing my guitar and singing for hours.  She spends most of the time giggling at me and I really can not work out what or why she finds what I am doing so funny!!  

I have howled at her watching me and Rocky on the television.  While I hate seeing and hearing myself on the television, it amuses me to see how Vanilla reacts to it.  She screams and gets a little stressed out, touching the television screen like she thinks I am actually inside it.  She understands that it is me, she points at me and shouts 'Daddy', but I just don't think she can understands how I get to be inside the television.

I do not think that she is going to have any of my musical talent, unlike Rocky's son who is already showing a fascination with music and is playing half a dozen tunes on the xylophone.  Vanilla on the other hand makes a chronic racket when she plays it.  I have tried quite a few times to teach her how to play a tune on the xylophone, but she does not seem interested and just does not get it, she does not try to sing that much either.  She does not really show any interest in music at all, other than when she is watching Disney movies or she is sat laughing at me.  I sometimes wander if she will turn out to be more like Honey because she got more of her colouring.

After Crystal had finished scrubbing the kitchen, she came out and started to build sand castles in the sand with Vanilla, but I notice there is still not a smile on her face.  I have to do some creeping to get her smiling and talking to me again, so I put down my guitar and go over to join them.

l start to laugh at Vanilla who seems to be having lots of fun demolishing the sandcastles.  As quickly as we are building the sandcastles, Vanilla is destroying them.  She sits watching us building them then she is diving on them to flatten them and giggling her head off, she is not interested in trying to help us build them or build one herself.  

Vanilla surprises me suddenly, when she just stands up and starts walking.  I sit and watch her in amazement, because it is the first time that I have seen her walking about on her own unaided.  I nudge Crystal and point in Vanilla's direction.

"I know."  she mumbles at me

"When did she start walking on her own?"  I frown at Crystal

"Since yesterday!!"  she smiles at me sarcastically  "I did try to tell you, but you was too busy sulking and not listening!!"  she tuts at me  "You actually told me to shut up!!"

"I am sorry!!  I did not mean to be so moody!!"  I mumble  "You have been told and warned about how I go when my head goes and I switch myself off.  I'm sorry I can't help it!!"

She does not say anything she just continues playing in the sand.

Now I am annoyed with myself.  It is bad enough, because of my career, that I have to spend so much time away from home and Vanilla, that I am missing things, especially all her firsts.  The first time she sat up on her own, when she started to feed herself, and the first word she said, all of those things, and more, she has done while I have been away from home working and with Rocky.  Every time I go away and come back, even if it just for a few days or a week, she seems to have grown up a little bit more in my absence.  Now she starts walking right under my nose and I am too busy shutting myself off and being moody to even notice what she is doing!!

As the day went on, Crystal started to become a little more like her old self again. I decided that we needed a change of scenery and should go into town to do some shopping.  I remember promising Vanilla, a few days ago, that I would try and find her a snowman teddy, not that I have heard her mention it since.  

Besides, every time I go away, Cotton expects me to bring her a present back, so I know before this vacation is over, I need to buy Ocean and Cotton something, or she in particular, will be having a mega strop if I go home empty handed.  Cotton is a child now and turning out to be just like Coral, Daddies spoiled little brat princess!!  I swear she is also rubbing off on Vanilla, because sometimes Vanilla acts just like her, which I really do not like!    

I did not really want to go into town because of the attention that I know I will attract, but I thought it might help to cheer Crystal up a little, we have been virtually cooped up in the beach house since we have been in Sandy Shores.  Not many people have clocked onto me being in Sandy Shores yet, so I have been pretty much left alone.  I am worried that our visit into town might have paps sniffing around the beach house, and then our privacy will be shattered, which is seriously going to annoy me if it does happen!!   It is nice to be able to act normally without the fear of anyone watching.

As I predicted, the moment we set foot into town, we started to get constantly pestered for autographs and photographs.  The coded world really baffles me, here the three of us are, a perfect example of everything that they say is wrong out in the coded world.   Crystal is colourless, I am visibly a mixed berry carrying a child who is also visibly a mixed berry and so obviously the product of a colour mixed relationship.  Twelve months ago, if the three of us had been stood here we would have been, egged, stoned, sworn at, abused, arrested and locked up.  However, because of my fame, the three of us can stand here and be perfectly accepted, it seriously makes me wander what is going on in their narrow minded brains!!  I even dared to walk into a yellow shop, with Crystal, to buy Vanilla something and nobody batted an eyelid, it was so far away from the abuse I got for walking into the green shop in Rainbow Valley.  Why do they make their stupid rules if they allow them to be broken so easily, and if I can break them, why can't everyone else?!

After wandering around the shops for more than a few hours, made longer by all the constant stopping and pestering, we went into a Bistro to have something to eat, where I got another free meal which made me laugh.  We were thinking about heading back to the beach house when Crystal spotted the park.  It amused me that she wanted to play on the park, she didn't want to go to the park for Vanilla, she wanted to play on the swings and slide herself.  I followed Crystal laughing my head off, watching her run squealing onto the park and she dived onto the swings like an excited child.

Vanilla had fallen asleep in her pushchair, which I am pushing, so I parked her close to the swings and jumped onto the empty swing next to Crystal who is squealing with laughter as she swings higher and higher.  I have seen her playing on Cottons swing at home and it amuses me that she seems to get more enjoyment out of their toys than the children actually do.

As we play on the swings and then the seesaw.  I spot and watch the guy lurking in the corner of the park with a camera.  I already have a pap following me, which annoys me, I just hope that he is not going to follow us back to the beach house.  I laugh guessing that the pictures in the newspaper tomorrow are going to be very amusing, me and Crystal playing on the park like a pair of children!!!  Not exactly what I would expect to see pictures in the paper of a rock star doing, but then when have I ever been normal!!

As I glance around the park, I spot something that turns my stomach and brings back memories of the first time that I saw both Denim and Crystal.  So distracted by it I forget about Crystal on the other end of the seesaw, so when I jump off, she gets dumped to the floor with a sudden and heavy thud, which makes her cry out in pain.

There is a homeless guy sleeping on one of the benches in the park.  The homeless people out in the colour coded world is something that I do not think I will ever be able to see without getting upset over it.  I know that underneath all the misery and dirt, there is a person who has a sad story to tell, and just needs to be given a little help to get there life back to one that they deserve rather than the awful existence they are just being left to have.

After getting off the seesaw I wander over towards him.  As Crystal watches me wandering over to the bench, she goes over to Vanilla's pushchair and I see the smile drop off her face as she spots the homeless guy.  I guess she would know better than anyone, the place that he is in, while I feel sorry for him and can only imagine what his life must be like, she has lived it and knows exactly what his life feels like.
I stand in front of the homeless guy, who I do not think is that much older than me, but I can not really tell. I remember Denim looking old and then when we washed off the dirt, he was a lot younger than I first thought.   This homeless guy looks very thin, which I would expect, and something always strikes me about the homeless, their heads always look too big for their bodies because of how malnourished they are.  I saw that in Crystal for quite a while until she put on a little weight.  Not that she has put on much because like me, I think she is naturally thin.  

At first the homeless guy continues to lie there with his eyes closed.  I stand there and watch him for a few minutes and think maybe he is asleep, but when I move my feet, my shoes make a noise on the concrete, which makes his eyes spring open.

He continues to lie there and just stares up at me a little wide eyed for a moment.  He jumps up into a sitting position suddenly and starts to rub his eyes frantically as he looks back at me again almost in disbelief.  Obviously he would not know who I am, I am guessing that it is my colourless eyes what are freaking him out.  I see him glance at Crystal who is pushing the pushchair slowly in our direction and he rubs his eyes again, while he keeps blinking and staring at her.  The look on his face is a picture.

I put my hand in my pocket and pull out a handful of notes and hold them out to him, which he just stares at wide eyed for a moment, but does not take them, then he looks back at up at me.

"Have I faded?  Only this is all just getting a little too wacky!!"  he mumbles which makes me laugh a little.

"No mate you have not faded!!   I am a mixed berry and my girlfriend is colourless."  he just smiles at me as he continues to stare at my eyes.  You should take this money and buy yourself some food and clothes.  There is enough there to get you a bed in a motel for a few nights."  I smile at him

"You need to cover your eyes up, you are going to get yourself arrested!!"  he mumbles as he stares at the money again, not knowing whether to take it or not.

"I am famous, so they allow me to break their poxy rules!!"  

He laughs at me as I continue to stand in front of him.  I make him take the money which he just stares at wide eyed as he screws it up in his fist a little hesitantly before he puts it in his pocket.  

I am close enough to smell him and he smells just like I remember Denim and Crystal doing, which turns my stomach.

I sit down next to him.  I know that I am a fool to myself, instead of walking away and forgetting about him, I am going to sit here talking to him.   I will get to know him, just like I did with Denim, then he will become a real person in my mind and I know I am not going to be able to stop thinking about him, the situation he is in and how he is suffering.

"Why are you homeless?"  I ask him.

"My parents faded in a car accident when I was a child.  Nobody took me in and there are no children's homes in this town, so I have been on the streets ever since."  

He looks down, while he is talking, at his hand and I notice he is playing with two rings that he has on one of his fingers, that I am surprised to see.  He sees me looking at them.

"My parents wedding rings, it's all I have got left of them, I don't even have a photograph."  he looks miserable, then he half laughs  "I have been beat up a time or two, people trying to steal the rings off me, I am lucky to still have them."

"Don't you have any family?"  I frown at him  "Or friends who can help you out?"

"No, not in this town.  I was an only child and we moved here because of my Dads work a few years before they faded.  Any family that I might have should be living in Strawberry Falls, where we originated from.  I didn't and don't have any way of contacting them, that is if they are still alive."  he smiles at me  "I was only eleven at the time, it has been a long time.  The only friends I have are homeless like me."

"How old are you now?"  I ask him

"I don't have a clue!!"  he mumbles  "I don't suppose it really matters, I have already survived more winters than most, I doubt I will have too many more ahead of me!" 

This makes me really sad!!  He is not very old and just like Denim did, he is already talking about fading before his time like he is waiting for it, and even wants it to put an end to his misery.  I start to feel angry, if he had been in Sugar Valley, he would never have ended up on the streets, especially being a child, there would always have been someone to have taken him in.  Nobody should seriously have to live like this.  

I sat and talked to him for a while, we worked out from the year he was born that he is only 22 years old, so he has been living this way for 11 years.  Ironically tomorrow is his birthday and he did not have the slightest idea because he has no way of keeping track of time or dates.  He thanked me quite a few times for the money which means nothing to me now, I just wished that there was something more that I could do for him.   

We were interrupted when I am pestered for my autograph, then Crystal tells me that Vanilla, who is now awake, is starting to get hungry and we need to head back.  I walked away from the homeless guy, who's name I had not even asked, feeling really guilty about leaving him in that life.  I have given him enough money to sort himself out for a few days, but what good is a few days of temporary help when, he has to spend the rest of his days after that suffering.

Crystal puts Vanilla to bed, which we generally fight over, because she insists, being Mommy it is her job, and that argument she always wins when Vanilla asks for a bedtime story which I can not possibly read to her.  Crystal is not too hot with reading herself, but she is getting a lot better, children's books she reads easily, it is the adult books that she struggles with, because of the long and complicated words.  Surprisingly, my purple Grandfather has taken over from River, the job of teaching Crystal how to read and write.   He actually enjoys it because he used to be a school teacher, way back when and before he became a drunken jerk!!  Crystal can now read well enough for us to get by out in the coded world together.

I go and lie down on the beach, and just stare up at the stars while I am thinking.  I am trying not to think about Shadow and Honey, which tonight I am finding fairly easy, because something else is now occupying and troubling my mind.  I can not and have not been able to stop thinking about that homeless guy in the park all afternoon, just like I knew that I would.

Crystal comes out and lies down quietly in my arms.  Most of the tension and awkwardness of the last few days has now virtually completely disappeared and she has at least half a smile on her face again.  However, I do not think that she is still completely right, but then she has not really been herself for quite a while now, not since her periods started, because of our baby problem.

"What are you thinking about?"  she asks quietly

"The homeless guy we saw in the park."  I mumble as I continue to stare up at the stars  "I hope he has a good meal and gets to sleep in a comfortable bed tonight."

"I highly doubt it!!"  she mumbles, so I turn to frown at her.  "It was good for you to give him the money to do it, but I doubt any motel or hotel would let him through the doors!!"

"He is not colourless, so surely it would not be a problem for him?"

"Of course it will be a problem!!  He is a homeless tramp, dirty and smelly, most places would shoo him straight out of the door whether he has money or not."  she laughs at me  "It was not just me because I lacked colour that was treated badly, all homeless people have the same problem, I just got it a little worse because of my lack of colour."  I stare at her wide eyed  "I bet there are only a few shops in this town, if any that will let him go in to actually buy food."

"So giving him money was not really the right thing to do to help him?"   

I frown at Crystal, now thinking that I am stupid and have not really helped him at all, which makes me start to feel pretty bad about walking away and leaving him to carry on living his awful life, even more than I already do.  She has told me this before, about the money that I gave her when she was homeless, but I thought it only applied to her because of her lacking colour and the way that the colour coded world treat colourless people.

"Not really, it all depends on what the shops are like in this town.  There will be very few that will actually let him in to spend the money.  They don't want the homeless stinking out their shop and putting their other customers off!!"  she rolls her eyes at me  "You would have been better buying and giving him the food and clothes, but what is the point of new clothes when he will still be dirty and stinking."

"Maybe that is what we should do, bring him here for a shower and get him some new clothes and feed him."  I smile at her but she just pulls a face.  "I am sure Forrest would not mind him sleeping here for a night or two while we are here."

"I know you mean well, and there are not many people that care like you do."  she pulls a face.  "However, you really don't understand how it feels, or what you are doing, you trying to help him that way will just make him feel even worse about his life, like it is not already bad enough for him!!  It might even finish him off!!"  I frown at her  "You bringing him here, to live normally for a few hours or a day or two, you are reminding and showing him what he is missing in his life, rubbing his nose in it even.  When he has to go back to living the way he already is, it makes it harder for him to take and cope with, which in the long run, is not helping him at all!"   she laughs  "It is just like waving a huge bag of sweets in front of Vanilla's face, giving her just one then taking the rest away  ... you just don't do it!!"
I stare at her for a moment, a little shocked as well as confused.  I never would have expected to hear Crystal of all people saying something like this. 

"What are you trying to say?  That it is kinder for me to just ignore him like everyone else does and not help him at all?!" 

"No I am not saying that exactly!!"  she looks at me sadly  "Without doing for him what you did for me and Denim, and it is impossible for you alone to do that for everybody!!  It is better you do very little."  she smiles at me  "The only thing you can do for him is buy him food and feed him or give him a blanket and warmer clothes in the winter."  she looks at me sadly  "The showers, the new clothes in this warm weather, giving him a bed to sleep in for a few night, they really do not help him at all!!"

"I already hate seeing homeless people, now I am going to hate it even more, after what you have just said!!"  I pull a face at her.  "Giving them money makes me feel better about walking away from them!!"

"I know I hate it too!!  I know exactly what they are going through remember, I have been there."  she smiles at me  "If it makes you feel better, we can go and buy him and some of the other homeless people some food tomorrow and give it to them."  she smiles at me  "You know the best feeling you can get when you are homeless is when you eat some decent food and you are not hungry for a while.  Hunger pains are constantly there and they feel worse than the cold!!"

"Okay, we will do that tomorrow then!"  I smile at her. 

Crystal starts to kiss me.  Straight away her hands start to wander, she tries to pull me over her as she finds the waist band of my shorts, and starts to slowly slide my shorts down.  I know exactly what she is up to!!

"Oh no you don't!!"  I stop kissing her and start laughing as I smack her hand playfully then pull my shorts back up.  "Firstly we are not doing it here, someone might be watching.  You know I have already had to chase one pap off, I would not be surprised if he is still not lurking about somewhere!!"  I smile at her as she rolls her eyes.  "Besides, you are banned remember!!"

"Have you gone off me?" she asks as she pulls away from me.

"No don't be silly!!"  I laugh at her.

"You have stop lying!!"  

She snaps at me as she jumps up and starts to storm off in the direction of the beach house.  I jump up and grab her and pull her back down onto the sand and hold her so she can not run off anywhere.

"What makes you think that I have gone off you?"  I frown at her  "I know I've been moody for a few days, but you know that wasn't you, I was upset because of the photograph of Shadow mostly."

"I know but, you have not touched me since we have been out here, you kept looking at Honey's photo and ... I saw you smiling and laughing with those stupid girls in town."

"Yeah stupid girls, that is exactly what they were!!!  I have to sign autographs and let them take my picture, I also have to smile and laugh with them whether I want to or not, it is just being polite!!  I can't go upsetting the fans even when I just want them to leave me the hell alone!!"  I frown at her  "Please don't start going all jealous on me, we have talked all this through and you seriously have nothing to worry about, I love you I am not interested in looking at anyone else!!"

"Do you miss Honey?"

"Yes of course I miss her, besides Storm, she was my best friend from when we were toddlers, and I do wish she was still here for Vanilla."   

I see Crystals face twist up painfully and know I have stupidly gone and said the total wrong thing, or I could have at least worded it a lot better. 

"You still love her don't you and wish she was here instead of me!"

"NO!!"  I snap at her wandering where all this stupidity is suddenly coming from!!  

"You do!!"

"How many times do I have to tell you ... I never loved Honey!!"  I snap at her  "Don't think for one minute that if she was still here, that you would not be, because you would."  she frowns at me   

I have often wandered what I would have done if Honey had still been alive when I returned home from Rainbow Valley because of me bringing Crystal with me.  I would have been in a right mess, and one very big reason why they should not have let me carry on thinking that she had faded in the vampberry den, giving me the chance to grieve for her and move on.  

If Honey had still been here it would not have changed how I felt about Crystal, and I would have had to chose between them.  I know which way I would have had to have gone, so me and Honey would have been over, but it would have been hard for me because of the pregnancy and I do not know how I would have coped with it!!  I hate to even think it but Honey fading actually made it so much easier for me. 

I think I can see now that me and Honey were probably doomed from the start anyway.  If I had not met Crystal and had come home alone and Honey was still here, I would have woken up to my mixed up feelings eventually.  I did not love Honey, so our relationship would never have worked forever, we would have broken up eventually and we would have been having a war over Vanilla and Shadow if he had lived, and probably caused an extended family argument from hell and all because I was stupid enough to go there in the first place!!

"Me and Honey was just childish stupidity on my part.  I should never have let it be anything other than best friends and we would never have lasted because I did not love her."

"How could you not know?"  she frowns at me.

"I thought I loved her at the time.  I mixed need and love up, I was too young and stupid not to realize that love and need are two totally different things.  I clung to Honey because I needed her, which made me think I loved her.  I did not even know what real love felt like then."

"What if you are doing the same thing with me?"

"I am not!!  It is loving you that made me realize!!  I frown at her  "Why are you being stupid? I have told you all this before!  So why are we even talking about my feelings for Honey again, and why are you even worrying about her when she has faded?!  It is not like her spirit is still here bugging us either!!"

"I just thought ... because you haven't touched me ...."   I start to laugh at her

"Yeah and that is the real problem here isn't it!!  Not Honey or those stupid girls!!"  I continue to laugh at her  "I guessed it was not all just me being in a mood, I half suspected that the lack of sex might be why you was getting so moody!!"  She pulls a face at me.  "Did I not warn you, while we are on vacation, I am not riding your baby making train, because that is all it is to you lately - baby making!!"

"Yes but ... if we don't, we are never going to get a baby."

"Just because we haven't had sex since we left home, it does not mean I don't love you or have gone off you!!"  I laugh at her  "I did warn you before we left home there would be a lack of it!!  You are obssessed, it is all you ever think about and it is not even because you want me most of the time, you just want a baby and that is all you see!!   We need a break, we are over doing it and making our situation worse!!"  she frowns at me in an odd way.  "Have you seriously not even been listening to what Dad, River and Winter are telling you - we are doing it too much!!  Doing it more is not going to get you a baby quicker, over doing it is probably what is making it not happen at the moment, and if you insist on keeping this up we are NEVER getting that baby you want!!" 

Crystal continues to lie there frowning at me almost like she is confused.   I seriously don't know why she is not listening or getting it because she is not stupid, or is she just so blinkered about having a baby that she just does not want to listen and it is making her irrational.  I have even caught her stupidly taking double doses of her medication, her thinking was that it would make it work better the more she took, so now I have had to take control of her medication, which in itself is a joke, with my own past record of forgetting my own medication.  She has almost become stupidly OCD about it, and every moment she is not having a period she thinks we should be doing it constantly trying to make a baby and even I now know it does not work like that.   I am really scared that if this is going to carry on for years, it is seriously going to crack the both of us up!!

Crystal is also beginning to make me feel like Honey did when that is all she wanted, a baby to stop Sunny from splitting us up.  It makes me wander why is this happening to me again?!  With Honey we got lucky, but then neither of us had a medical fertility problem and for all I know Honey could have been pregnant from the very first time.  However, Crystal, in her desperation has taken it to a whole different level and I am sick of her obsession and hearing her crying over it!!

"You are wearing me out!!  I bet my sperm count is so low and weak at the moment, it must be faded before it even starts and it is getting nobody pregnant!!!  You don't even give it a chance to regenerate and create anything that can swim!!"  she giggles  "It is not funny Crystal - this is serious - don't you realize it is probably your fault that we are not getting a baby, and not because you are broken, it will be me who is not working right now because you are over working it!!"   she pulls a face at me  "Even the pregnancy tests are getting ridiculously stupid - every morning we have the same performance - you expect to see a positive straight after every time we do it and I am getting sick of it!!"

"I can not help it, we have to keep trying when I am not on my period."  I can see the tears welling up in her eyes before she closes them.  "It is just not fair when your sister is having babies that she does not even want!!   All I want is a baby and we aren't getting one, I'm getting too old and I am scared we won't ever have one, especially if we don't do it!!"

"I know its not fair, and you are NOT too old for berry's sake you are not even thirty yet!!  We can worry about your age in six or seven years time!!!"  I laugh but all I really want to do is cry.  "We will have a baby one day, if you chill out a little, but if we carry on like we are we seriously will never have one.  You have to listen to what everyone is telling you and we have to slow down."  I smile at her  "From now on I am going to have to put my foot down with you, to make sure we start to do exactly what the hospital say - we only do it every three days and I am saying you can do ONE pregnancy test a week!!!"  she pulls a face  "Seriously I mean it Crystal!!  You have got to stop before you drive us both crazy!!"

She lies there quietly thinking for a while and I decide to change the subject away from the baby thing while I have got the chance and before the flood gates open and she starts crying over it.  We came out here to give Crystal a distraction, to give her something else to think about so we could take a break from it.  I really do not want to spend all night talking about it, we do too much of this at home.  I imagine, like at home, I have just wasted my time and breath again anyway, because I doubt she has listened to a single word that I have just said to her.  She seriously needs to stop thinking and obsessing about it all the time!!

"Are you going to do that wedding dress modeling thing?"  I ask her

"I don't know.  They want to see me in Sandalwood Heights, in a few weeks time, when you will be in Rainbow Valley.  I don't want to go on my own."  

Crystal mentioning Sandalwood Heights makes me shiver, that is where me and River had that encounter with the three vampberrys in the alleyway, the ones who broke River's back and ribs.

"You don't have to go alone, I am sure Sunny will go with you to look after you!!  I could always ask Saffy or Cosmic to tag along too, I expect Storm will be with me in Rainbow."  I smirk at her then  "You know you could always buy yourself a nice wedding dress while you are there.  You will be in the best place to get the exact one that you want."

"Yeah funny!!  What do I need another dress for?  Like I do not suddenly already have a wardrobe full of white dresses that I already don't wear!!"  she laughs  "I swear your Mother is on some sort of mission to fill my wardrobe with tonnes of clothes!!" 

"It won't be just another white dress, it will be a wedding dress."  I laugh at her.  "Why do you think you would need a wedding dress .... for when we get married ... next month maybe!!"

"You are just saying that to make me feel better and to stop me worrying because I think you have gone off me!!"  she frowns then laughs at me

"No I am not just saying it to make you feel better!!"  I laugh at her  "I have been thinking about us getting married for a while!"

"Yeah right!!"  she laughs  "A while being the past five minutes since I accused you of going off me!!  River says you have the attention span of a gold fish with anything that is not music!!"

"I have actually been thinking about it for weeks and I'll prove it!!"  I smirk at her 

I jump up and pull up the corner of the rug that we are lying on and dig the box out of the sand where I had partly buried and hidden it earlier while she was putting Vanilla to bed.  I have been paranoid since Granite collected the ring from the jewelers for me that Crystal might find it hidden inside the house, but luckily she has not.  I did not have a clue how I was going to do this, I still don't but I guess now is as good a time as any.  I am nervous about what she is going to say or how she will react.

"What are you doing now?"  she starts to laugh at me as she watches me digging in the sand.  "You look like a dog digging!!"

"I have not bought this in the past five minutes have I!!"  I smirk at her as I hold the ring out to her.  She stops laughing but she is still smiling.  "Crystal, I have not gone off you, I love you and I want us to get marry.  So will you marry me?"

She just stands there with her mouth and eyes wide open staring at the ring saying nothing for what feels like the longest time.  The silence is killing me.

"Well?"  I frown at her as she continues to just stand there silently  "Say something!!"

"Is it a real ring?"  she stares at it wide eyed.

"I meant answer my question with a Yes or No."  I laugh at her  "Of course it is real!!"

"I've never had a ring before!"  she frowns at me  "Did you really get that for me?!!"

"Oh fudge Crystal!!"  I start really laughing at her  "I didn't buy it for myself did I!!  Remember the day I tied a piece of Vanilla's ribbon around your fingers?"  she nods at me  "I did that so I knew what size ring to get you." 

"Can I try it on?"  she grins at me.  I laugh at her because this is like waiting for paint to dry waiting for an answer and it's killing me.  She has watched enough soppy movies to know how it works ... trust Crystal to be awkward to the max. 

"You have to answer my question first!!"  I smile at her  "Will you marry me?"

"Okay, as long as you have not gone off me!"  

 She smiles at me and holds her hand out to me so that I can put the ring on her finger. 

I almost collapse onto the sand in a fit of laughter after I have put the ring on her finger.  I think Okay is as close to yes as I am ever going to get, but it is bugging me that she still is going on about me going off her!!

She starts squealing, laughing and jumping around while she is looking at her ring, I think the whole of Sandy Shores must now be able to hear her!!  I grab her and pick her up, swinging her up into my arms.
"No don't throw me in the water I might lose my ring!!"  she starts screaming and struggling, trying to get out of my arms.

"I'm not throwing you in the water!! I am taking you to bed to shut you up!!"  I smirk at her. 

"We are getting married!!  I am too excited to sleep!!"  she starts moaning

"Who said anything about sleep?!"  I smirk at her  "I am sick of you keep saying that I have gone off you!!  It has been five days, so I guess you are allowed!!"

"Really!"  she squeals  "So I don't have to wait until we get home?"

"No, but DON'T ask again for another three days!" 

"Okay I won't ask again for three days!!"  she giggles

Yeah ... I wander just how long that is going to last!!



  1. I wonder, is the red homeless guy the one you gave the name Phoenix to? I think that name would make sense for him if you have something similar happen to him like you did when Denim. A new being is "reborn" from the ashes of the old.

    Lol, Crystal at the proposal. That would be how I expect her to react though XD Hopefully she will be calmer about trying for a baby now. A guys needs a break every once in a while XD