Thursday, 6 July 2017

Chapter 59 - Gen 2 - Tapestry

I run out of Forrest's room chasing after Dad, a little confused by what he is doing.  He has vanished out of the corridor already, so I head for his office, presuming that is where he has gone.

He is in his office like I thought he would be, on the phone, trying to get Forrest in for a CAT and MRI scan as soon as possible.  I have to sit and wait for him to finish on his call.

          "Dad why are you running a load of tests on Forrest?"
          "We have to."  he laughs  "I can not just say, he has lost his memory then leave it at that!"  he smiles at me  "Forrest will want an explanation, and I know for one Granite will be demanding every test possible to try and get to the root of it.  He is going to be imagining permanent brain damage and all sorts!!   Medically, it has to be done properly."

          "It seems like a ball ache when we know ..."
          "Yeah I know, and I am still not really comfortable with it."
          "I have already had one close shave, Caramel deciding that she should have a termination before Forrest woke up, and I had to talk her out of it!!  I must have needed my head testing to agree to this!!" he pulls a face
           "You stress too much!!"  I laugh at him
           "It's not only all the lies I am having to tell again, but knowing he is going to struggle for the rest of his life because of the memories he has lost.  I don't know how I am going to sleep at night."
          "Yeah but won't it be worth it!!  It's not like we remember that much about our childhood anyway, and his phobia will be gone and he won't be struggling around children and especially not his Grandchildren and the two new babies."
          "That is if it has even worked Tapestry .., there is no saying that it will!!"  he frowns at me  "You need to hope this has cured his phobia, or I will never be sleeping ever again!!"
          "We should test him ... Snow is downstairs."
          "No!!"  he snaps at me  "It's too soon to be springing a toddler on him without a reason ... let us get the tests done first, then I can plant the idea into Granite head that he's lost all his childhood memories, which might make him think about the phobia."
         "What about Scarlet's baby ... have you said anything to Ruby?"         
         "No.  I doubt that woman will ever come clean until the proof is there for everyone to see, and I will probably just be wasting my breath trying!!"  he pulls a pained expressed  "Besides Scarlet is so close now and if I go telling her she will be distraught, being in labour is hard enough for any woman, without be emotionally upset while it is happening, she already has to contend with Cinnamon not being here."

         "Even though I think it is not fair on the rest of his family withholding this information ... I think you are right about one thing, NOT upsetting the apple cart unless it is necessary - because it is going to cause destruction when it does come out!!"  he rolls his eyes  "We are just going to have to sit back and wait .... and PREY none of his colouring comes out in the baby, to buy us a little more time until everything has settled down!!"
          "How likely is it, the baby having his colouring?"
          "More than possible ... look at Mo, he has your Grandmothers hair, Clay and Amber both have their Grandfathers hair, Poppy has your Mothers hair, Shadow has Ruby's eyes."  he frowns at me  "Another reason why I haven't said anything to her yet ... what about if Cosmic has got it wrong, what about if he is not even Scarlet's Dad and I go making a fool of myself, as well as seriously upset everyone for no reason.  I think that is why we need to wait until the baby is born to be one hundred percent sure."
          "I guess, I never thought about that.  She does sleep around so she could be anyone's"  I laugh  "But if Cosmic has got it wrong then so has Ruby, because she said his name quite a lot apparently when she was trying to off load her guilt, she thinks he is the one."
          "Unfortunately he probably is.  I have had a poke in their medical records, his blood type is exactly the same as Scarlet's ... I hoped it would be different, because anyone other than him would be better for everyone!"
          "So if the baby doesn't have any of his colouring, are you going to just keep the secret to yourself and never tell them?"
          "Hell no!!  After what Maizie did to me not telling me about River, I couldn't live with myself hiding it!!"
          "Shadow ... "  I mumble
          "Tapestry please don't start with that one again.  I was doing what I thought was best for you and Vanilla!!"  he rolls his eyes  "Us hiding Shadow from you, is a totally different kettle of fish and you know it, because of our cold friends with fangs and the world they live in.  I really think that we have talked that subject out don't you!!"

            "So you are going to tell Scarlet the truth."
            "Yes, obviously we might have no choice when the baby is born.  As much as Scarlet is going to hate what we have to tell her, she has a right to know, and so does he and his family!!  Unfortunately this will have to come out sometime, and if the baby doesn't show any signs of him, then I am going to wait until after the trial, and let things settle down first.  They have enough to deal with at the moment don't you think, they really don't need this too."
           "Maybe we should warn Granite and Forrest, they can at least help us with the fall out, if it happens."
           "I don't think so!!  They are no different to the rest, they have enough going on, and don't forget the trial is coming up, that is going to put them all through enough hell, without me adding to it.  Granite will feel like I do, he had Slate hidden from him remember, and do you honestly think he will be able to sit on this secret without reacting to it!!"  he smiles at me  "It's best just kept to me you and River at the moment ... we will deal with the fall out, if and when it is necessary.  Just thinking about what we all have coming, it is knocking me sick, I can honestly see this tearing the extended family apart, we have had drama in the past, but nothing like this ..." 
          "Why is everyone so yampy in this town?!"  I laugh at Dad suddenly  "Rocky and everyone else that I know who live outside of this town - have quiet and normal lives without all this drama ... with us it never stops!"
         "That's a very good question."  he starts laughing  "We used to have a quiet and normal life here too.  I blame myself sometimes, because I brought most of it home from boarding school with me!!"  he is really laughing now
         "Trust you to blame yourself!!"  I laugh at him
         "Yeah well I do ... if I hadn't brought most of my school friends home with me, our lives would have been a hell of a lot quieter!!"  he laughs  "Of course Gravel was already here waiting to go off and cause his mahem, but when you basically have a handful of already very troubled teenagers coming together, things are never going to be quiet or normal."

         "What do you mean by troubled?"
         "Most of us were sent to that boarding school for a reason, and not very nice ones.  I was the only one who didn't have a bad reason for being there.  Everyone else basically, had a troubled life, family background or reason for why they were sent there, including your Mother."  he laughs  "They were all very troubled and messed up mentally .. which is part of what has caused all the drama.  While most of them have dealt with their troubles and settled down, Lime, Ruby and Sunny in particular, I don't think ever dealt with their issues.  They are all pure berries too which hasn't helped, who have tied themselves down to this town with mixed berry children, so they feel caged and frustrated.  Those that had parents were disowned for their colour mixing which added to their troubles.  I doubt Ruby will ever stop her stupidity, I'm not sure any of us really know why she was sent away to the boarding school."
          "Remind me never to send my kids to a boarding school!!"
          "Yeah and I hope you don't, especially not one like the one I went to!!"  he frowns at me  "Although, you do have the means and opportunity to give your children a far better education, than what they will ever get here ... not all boarding schools are bad and full of trouble teenagers, especially those that you pay for."
          "Didn't the same apply to you with us?"  I frown at him
          "Not really!! The means yes, the opportunity, not like you do.  I might be a well known Neurosurgeon in the medical world, and a mixed berry that can go freely out into the world and shout about it without getting arrested and locked up, but my power over the authorities is not like yours being world famous.  I was limited to the schools in Berry Shores or Cherry Hill ... I would never have got away with sending any of you out into the coded world to be educated."  his eyebrows rise a little  "Vanilla is already accepted out in the world, just like you and Crystal are, she is your daughter, and she will be famous just because you are.  So you have the opportunity to get her the best education money can buy ... I doubt she will ever be caged in a colour mix town, so she has the world of opportunity at her feet."

           "So why didn't you, send at least Mo and Coral to either of the other colour mix towns, they would have had better education .... I know there was no point you sending me, any education would have been waste on me!"  we both laugh for a moment
           "Our own experience of boarding schools was the main thing that stopped us, it was very hard for me being away from my parents, and your Mother would never have been parted from any of you ... if one of you had gone to Berry or Cherry, we all would have had to go, and there was too much to keep us here."  he smiles at me  "Besides the education we got here has never stopped me or Forrest and especially Granite, from achieving something with our lives.  Sometimes it is not the education, it is what the individual does with it."  he laughs quietly  "Granite, you and Coral are actually the perfect examples of just that."
           "What do you mean?"  I frown at him
           "If you had know Granite growing up, you would never believe he was the same person that you see today.  Now that was one off the rails teenager, and he was the one who caused all the trouble in this town, along with his criminal mates.  He was always destined to get locked up, I'm surprised it took so long."  he chuckles to himself  "He rarely went to school, especially after his Father faded, drink and drugs, it was very rare to see him not high or hammered!!  He didn't even bother to turn up to take his exams.  Look at him now, career wise he is on a level with me, Head of Neurology ... just proving, anyone can do it if they try, even with a bad education."  he starts to really laugh  "You are just like Granite .. Mr I don't even want to bother trying to learn anything, so he didn't ... I bet you still can't even count above 10 with out struggling can you?!"
           "No ... twenty actually!!"  I smirk at him
           "Exactly, and look at you, with not a grade to your name ... Mr famous Rock Star who will probably achieve the most out of life and is already earning more then we ever could, or dream of."  he laughs quietly  "On the other hand we have Coral ... the straight A student, who walked through school and academically was definitely the cleverest one.  She could move to Berry or Cherry, even spend some time at university, and get herself a very good career if she had a mind to. ... and look what she is doing with it ... absolutely nothing, and the way she is going, I doubt she ever will!!  She is going to have to marry a rich man just to keep her, that is all I can see!!"  he tuts

           "Yeah well, she is taking being Daddies Spoiled Princess too far ... she thinks that is a career in itself!!  She won't get a proper job just in case she breaks a nail!!  And I hope you know she is teaching brat princess number two how to follow in her footsteps!!"  I laugh at him and he pulls one of his disapproving faces at me.  He hates the nicknames that I have for my two sisters.  "Berry help them if they teach Vanilla how to become a brat!!  Maybe I should send Vanilla away to boarding school, so they don't rub off on her!!"
           "Vanilla will be fine, she's already very head strong, I've heard her a few times telling Cotton to stop being a drama queen!!"  he laughs  "It is Snow that I am more worrying about, with his problems."
           "Well he definitely WON'T be going to school!!"  I tut  "If only you knew the hell I went through for being different!!  Snow is traumatised enough without sending him to school, I'm going to make sure he never has to go through what I went through!!"
           "You can't not send him to school, just because you didn't like it!!"  Dad laughs at me
           "I know, I'm not totally stupid!"  I laugh at him  "We are going to get him home schooled, so he doesn't get picked on, bullied and ridiculed like I did!!"
            "And who exactly is going to be home schooling him?"  he frowns at me
            "Not me, that's for sure!!"  I laugh at him  "I'm going to hire a properly qualified teacher to do it ... I'm surprised Daddy Clone hasn't told you, I've already discussed it with him, and he is going to help me find a decent one.  He is actually thinking about Ocean being home schooled too."
            "Seriously!?"  he laughs  "No he never said."  this seems to have amused him for some reason.
            "I'm surprised, doesn't he usually tell you everything!!"  I laugh quietly
            "No, he probably wouldn't tell me about this, because I think he knows what I'll say!"  he laughs  "He is always going on at me for spoiling the girls and wrapping you in cotton wool, but he can not even see he is doing exactly the same things with Ocean!!"  he starts really laughing

             "So I guess you don't approve of home schooling?"
             "Not for Ocean!!  It is not a bad idea, as far as Snow goes, and probably what he needs, to stop the bullying and his social anxiety ..."  he pulls a face  "However, isn't that isolating him just a little too much.  He needs to be encouraged to socialise with other people, not shut him away from other children his own age which will just feed his condition.  We need to encourage him out of it not isolate him which will probably make him worse."
            "River said that, but if he goes to school and is picked on, it could make him more troubled, and he could just withdraw into himself even more, or send him off the rails like it did me."  I smile at him  "It is not like he will never socialise with children his own age, or other people, our house is like piccalilli station most of the time and I've always got somebody elses child to mind ... he already has a lot of cousins and he'll be getting another four play mates pretty soon, along with Vanilla."
            "I guess, it is worth a try with Snow at least."  he smiles at me  "It can't go any worse than it did when we tried it with you!"  he starts laughing
            "I was never home schooled."  I frown at him
            "You was for about 12 months - but it didn't work out."  he laughs  "You constantly played up, because you wanted to go to school with Storm and Honey ... you bit most of the teachers the agency sent, in the end they refused to send any, because they said you was too uncontrollable.  So we had no choice but to send you to main stream school, there being no schools for special needs children in any of the colour mix towns."
            "I don't remember that!!"  I laugh at him
            "No, probably not, you was only five."  he laughs at me

            "While I'm here, I suppose I should warn you about the live in Nanny, in case River hasn't told you about that either."
            "What live in Nanny?"  he frowns at me
            "I'm going to be hiring one soon, to help Crystal with the kids."  his eyebrows rise a little  "You know I have got that tour coming up soon - I'm going to be away for three months, and I can't just leave Crystal on her own in her condition to look after Vanilla and Snow."
            "She won't be on her own."  he frowns at me  "You know there is enough of us in the house to help Crystal look after Vanilla and Snow while you are away!!  You don't need to hire a Nanny!!"
            "I know but, it just takes the pressure off everyone, with Mom to look after as well.  You can see how Crystal has been since River told her everything that could go wrong if she doesn't look after herself because there are four babies ... she is now too scared to move, she is terrified that something is going to go wrong!!  The only reason I am here now is because Sunny is with her and I have Snow here."  I roll my eyes  "She is worrying and doesn't want me to go on tour, but I have no choice, I have to go ... having a live in Nanny just takes all the worry away from her."  I laugh quietly  "It will also help me to sneak out more often to see Shadow."
            "I suppose that little monkey is going to be a total nightmare while you are away, constantly demanding mine and Rivers attention."  he laughs 
            "Yep!!  He is really not happy about me going on tour, and it is not helping that I am struggling to see his so much at the moment because of how Crystal is."  
            "I have noticed how quiet Crystal has been lately, every time I see her she is lying on the bed watching tv, which is good because she is getting plenty of bed rest and at least she isn't bouncing around."
            "Yeah she is driving me mad with it, she is worrying over the top and way too much!!"  I laugh

            "I think having a Nanny is going to have to be a permanent thing anyway."  I roll my eyes  "Crystal is never going to cope with four babies and two toddlers on her own, when I'm away working.  She is going to need help until they start school at least, and a live in Nanny is the best way to do it."
            "Well you seem to know what you are doing."  he chuckles to himself  "But, you need to be very careful about who you are employing, both the teacher and the nanny.  Your fame could attract all sorts of trouble."
             "Don't stress it is all under control ... River and Crimson are going to sort it all out.  River has contacted a few agencies out of town, he's doing it all in his name and Crimson will be vetting and police checking the applicants.  They won't even know about me until after they get the job."
             "You say live in Nanny ... so where exactly will they be living."  he laughs quietly
             "That is something we need to sort out."  I roll my eyes  "Granddads room would be the best place, but I can't really turf him out ... suddenly my space is not nearly big enough ... Vanilla, Snow and Ocean will soon be needing their own rooms and I don't know where the hell these four babies are going to sleep!!"
             "No, neither do I!!"  he starts to really laugh  "When we built your space, we only really had you and Vanilla in mind!!"

The door opens and Granite comes strolling in holding a very grizzly Snow.

          "He wants his Dad."  he laughs as he passes him to me  "I have left his buggy out in the corridor ... I had to get him out of it because he was having a screaming fit when he woke up."
          "He always does when he wakes up, sorry I should have warned you."  I laugh at Granite

          "I don't think he likes me very much."  Granite laughs at me  "Every time I try to speak to him he just screams at me."
          "It's not you, he's just very shy."  I smile at him  "I shouldn't have left him for so long, he was probably scared waking up to a strange face."
          "He doesn't say much, I only heard him say Dad when he was crying for you, is he still not speaking."  he frowns at me  "I can't say I've ever heard him speak when he's with Saffron either."
          "No, not really .... "  I mumble  "Unlike Vanilla who never shuts up."
          "He is going to speech therapy isn't he?"
          "Yeah, although it is not really helping him very much"  Dad laughs at Granite
          "Is there something wrong with him medically?"  Granite frowns at Dad as he sits down.
          "No.  He has had every test going, and there is nothing wrong with his brain, vocal chords or anything else ... he is actually quite a bright child when he wants to be.  He just refuses to speak ... we have put it down to Selective Mutism."
          "Oh, that's a tough one!!"  Granite pulls a face
          "Yeah ... he is going to be very hard work growing up, especially if he doesn't grow out of it, and as you know, most don't, it continues into their adult life."  Dad mumbles as he glances at Snow
          "Is he not talking at home either?"
          "If we put him in a room with Vanilla or Ocean and walk out of it ... he does talk to them a little, but the minute any of us adults are around he totally clams up ... even Tap and Crystal struggle to get a lot out of him most of the time."  he laughs quietly  "It's actually the other toddlers who are teaching him to talk, not us adults."

          "It's horrible to see children with these sort of problems."
          "We think it is probably due to his awful start in life ... social isolation, which is probably what happened to him, if Crystal was anything to go by - shut up in a room with no or very little human contact." he smiles  "I think he suffers from a lot of anxiety, social and otherwise, which is probably a reason why he also has sleep deprivation.  Berry knows what he went through before Tapestry found him!!"

While they continue to talk about Snow and his condition, Snow starts to grizzle a little, and I hear his stomach grumbling.  He needs feeding, so I quickly grab him a bottle out of the bag on his buggy out in the corridor.  I am glad that he never has a problem drinking cold milk, I think he actually prefers it.

          "So have you checked on Forrest?"  Granite mumbles
          "Yeah and I think you are right."  a pained expression flashes across Granites face  "I have already got him booked in for an MRI and CAT scan."
          "His last scan was all clear, he has no brain abnormalities, so I really wasn't expecting this."
          "Me neither."  Dad mumbles  "His scans are booked in for 11am ... so before then, you can access his reflexes, immediate, short term and long term memory capability and take bloods and urine, if you want to make yourself useful, before you clock off."  Dad laughs at Granite, who laughs back at him 
           "Yeah I'll do that before I shoot off."  he smiles at Dad

           "So, do you have any ideas about what might be going on with Forrest?"  Dad asks Granite and I am glad I have my back to them, because I am finding it hard not to laugh.
          "No, at the moment I can't think straight or see past the worst.  I don't think there is anything wrong with his immediate or short term memory - we had quite a lengthy conversation about a lot of recent stuff, before I even noticed there was a problem ... it only seems to be his long term memory that is affected."
          "Yeah I get that impression too."  Dad mumbles  "As his last scans were clear, his memory loss looks very cut and dried to me ... he doesn't seem to remember anything before the day you two got married, but he can remember everything after that day ... I think we might even be looking at a case of dissociative amnesia, which as you know results from a  psychological caused as opposed to physical damage.  Forrest does have a long history of psychological problems."
          "Hopefully that is all it is."  Granite mumbles thoughtfully  "So what did you ask him."
          "He didn't remember how he got the scar on his leg from your tree fall and the compound fracture, and I asked him about Garnet too and he had no recollection of him or how he faded."  he laughs  "He didn't remember your space cakes either, that me and Gravel ate."
          "Oh fudge ... now that was funny!!"  Granite starts laughing
          "Not from where I was standing it wasn't."  Mango laughs
          "You weren't standing Mango, you was rolling around on the floor with Gravel having absolute hysterics."  he sniggers

         "It is actually funny you asked him about the space cakes because we were laughing about that only last week because Mel has got a crab and chocolate cake cravings and Forrest got Saffron and Atlas to cook her some chocolate and crab brownies."  Granite rolls his eyes
          "what ... crab flavoured brownies?"  Dad laughs
          "Yeah they were disgusting, but Mel loved them!!"  he laughs  "Anyway, Forrest remembered the space cakes last week, he actually told Mace the story."
          "Yeah, he reminded me last week about his legs, when he walked into a bed and his leg niggled him for the rest of the day because he hit the scar pretty hard. "  Dad laughs  "He always blames me when he gets any pain in his legs."
          "He has definitely lost a lot of his long term memory!!"  Granite mumbles
          "All of it I think!!  I had to tell him who Spot was."  Granite pulls a face  "He says the first thing he can remember is you two getting married and nothing before that."

Granite sits there quietly just staring at Dad, he looks like he is starting to get upset.

          "I can't help but think ... if he has lost everything before we got married, he won't remember what we were about any more."
          "Yeah he did say something that amused me, after the fuss I've watched him creating for the past twenty years ... he said he couldn't remember why you two even got married when he is straight."  "Dad rolls his eyes  "He seems to have forgotten the fact that he loved you."
          "Exactly my point ...."  Granite chokes

      "You know this memory loss might not be such a bad thing if their is no physical brain damage attached to it."  Dad laughs which makes Granite frown at him 
          "I wouldn't say having amnesia is a good thing!!"  Granite is still frowning
          "Dissociative amnesia can be .... just like Lilly, she has shut out everything before the coma, so she does not remember the bad thing that used to upset her.  Forrest seems to have forgotten or shut out the first eighteen years of his life ... aren't they the year that are screwing him up and causing his phobia.  Wouldn't it actually be better for him if he did forget what you two were about."
          "Yeah ..."  he mumbles as he stares at Dad first blankly, then his eyes widen  "Oh Fudge!!  His phobia ... if all his childhood memories have gone ... logically his phobia should have gone too."
          "Yeah that is exactly what I was thinking!!"  Dad starts laughing
          "We could take Snow into his room to see how he reacts to him."  Granite suddenly grins at me
          "No!!"  Dad laughs  "I've already had Tapestry suggest that!!  Impatient the both of you ... we need to get these tests done first ... what about if we are wrong, we could have missed something, or something could have changed since his last scan ... we need to rule everything else out first and the last thing he needs is a toddler springing on him without any warning."  he tuts  "We really don't need him freaking out and scaring Snow half to death either!!"
           "Yeah, I guess you are right."  Granite laughs as he stands up and looks at his watch.  "I'll get these assessments done, so I can shoot off for a few hours, Mace will be onto me if I'm late home."

We watch Granite walk out of the room.  As soon as the door closes behind him, I laugh at Dad who stares at me for a moment then just closes his eyes and shakes his head.

           "You should go home."  he smiles at me  "I'll call you later so you can bring one of the toddlers in, then we can see what damage you've done."
            "Damage!"  I laugh at him  "More like the miracle I've worked curing his phobia!"
            "Let's hope so ... or I might just be heading for a nervous breakdown!"

I laugh at him as I leave his office, thinking he stresses too much!!


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