Friday, 1 June 2018

Chapter 65a - Gen 2 - Tapestry

After visiting Saffron in intensive care, I help Crystal strap Snow and Vanilla into the baby seats in the back of my Grandmothers car.  I wave them off, wishing that I was going home with them.  I have to take time out and sit outside the hospital, for a while.  I smoke a cigarette while I am trying to clear my head, .

I rub my temples and wince, because I can feel a headache coming on.  My head is literally spinning out of control with everything that is going on, after the Gravel bomb was dropped on everyone.  I knew today was going to be a hard day, but not this hard!! I just hope that I can survive the day without having an emotional outburst.

While in reality, Gravel being Scarlet's Father, does not really affect me in anyway.  However, I am having to watch everyone around me breaking, including Crystal.  Emotionally I already feel totally washed out.   It is hard not the think about miss Cinnamon today, and just having to watch Saffron and Atlas crying, dragged me into joining them, which really has not helped me.

Saffron especially has thrown everyone through a total loop today because of the Gravel news.  None of us actually thought about Saffron and how all this might affect him mentally.  The Gravel news was enough to mentally tip him completely over the edge, because it has affected him a way that it affects nobody else.

Saffron does not care that Scarlet is now only his half Sister, or even that Gravel is her Father.  It is Sunny again that his emotional and mental torment is tied to.  Saffron already felt isolated, forgotten, alone and unloved, being separated from his parents and siblings since the age of fourteen, which has broken the bond that should be there between them.  Along with the years of mental and physical abuse that Sunny dealt him, has really messed Saffron's head up.  Finding out that Sunny treated Scarlet, knowing that she is not biologically his child, a lot better than Saffron, who is his biological child, has left Saffron broken, probably beyond repair.

Crystal is also really worrying me at the moment.  Upset is the last thing that she needs right now in her condition, which is already delicate because of the four babies that she is carrying.  She has been very upset, finding out that she is not actually related to Scarlet by blood.  When I had to sit her down, out in the corridor, and tell her about Scarlet's real Dad, who is not Sunny.  It really upset her.  Scarlet and Saffron are the two out of all of her Nieces and Nephews that she has grown the closest too.   She became pretty hysterical when she was told about Saffron trying to fade himself.  She didn't take either news very well at all.

I take a deep breath and paste a fake smile on my face, before I push open the door and walk into Scarlet's room, wandering what I might have to face.  More emotional stuff, I could do without, but doubt it is far from over yet!!  I would and should have gone home with Crystal, Snow and Vanilla, however, I promised Scarlet I would pop back and tell her how Saffron is doing.

          "How is Saffron?"  Scarlet asks me as soon as I walk through the door
          "He is not too good."  I smile at her weakly
          "He's not alone is he?"
          "No, Slate and Cherry are with him at the moment.  Dad has made up a rota, so he is not going to be left a lone for a single second from now on.  Until we know he is mentally stable at least."  I smile at her
          "Is Crimson not with him?"
          "He was, but he is off on one of his missions.  He has gone out with Granite, they are trying to find Ruby."  I smile at her  "Berry help her when they find her, the mood both of them are in."
          "Yeah I can imagine."  she laughs quietly  "Where is Atlas?"
          "Taking a break ... begrudgingly."  I chuckle  "Mace and Affair have dragged him off kicking and screaming.  They are making him eat something."
          "Has Saffron said anything yet?"
          "Yeah!"  I grin  "We finally got him to open up, and he is talking."
          "So has he said why he did it?"
          "Yeah.  He said it was a spur of the moment thing.  He went into the bathroom just to cut his legs, but it all got a little too much for him. "  I mumble  "He cut his legs four times and it wasn't taking his pain away, so he went for his wrists.  In the moment he just wanted an end to all his mental torment." 
          "But why?  What upset him so much to make him want to try fading himself?"
          "Sunny.  Even though he isn't here, he is continuing to SERIOUSLY mess Saffy's head up!!  It is because Sunny knew you was not biologically his child, and the way that he treated you so much better than he treated Saffron.  He treated you like his little favourite princess, it didn't matter that you was not his child, while he treated Saffron, his own biological child like total and utter crap.  "Way to feel even more unloved"  were his exact words!!  On top of everything he is already mentally trying to deal with, this just tipped him over the edge."

          "I knew it!  This is all my fault!!"  Scarlet snaps and starts to get upset.
          "This is NOT your fault!!  Nobody blames you, especially not Saffron!!  Scarlet, please don't get upset.  His emotional breakdown is all on Sunny!!"
          "He must hate me!!"  she starts to snivel
          "Seriously he doesn't hate you!!  Saffron is sorry that he has made a hard day for you even harder."  I mumbles  "Please don't beat yourself up over it, Atlas is doing enough of that for everyone.  For Saffron, as usual it is all Sunny!!  Gravel being your biological Father doesn't even bother him!!" 
           "I wish I could say the same!"  she grumbles  "How is Atlas?"
           "He's blaming himself for not seeing the signs.  For not thinking that Saffron would go as far as to try and top himself.  He also thinks it is his fault, because he was not quick enough to stop Saffron from trying to do it."
          "Yeah it has got to be very hard on Atlas especially."
           "It is.  He nearly lost him and now he is terrified of leaving him alone.  Emotionally it has knocked Atlas through a right loop.  He is thinking all sorts of silly shit!!"  I mumble quietly  "Granite has phoned Compass, Atlas's brother.  He's catching a flight from Cherry later.  If you remember he has worked in Psych in the past, and he helped Slate, through his problems.  Having his Brother here should help both Atlas and Saffron."
           "It just keeps snowballing doesn't it!!  This is affecting ALL of us in different ways.  I seriously didn't think it would affect Saffron this badly tho."
           "I'm not sure any of us saw this coming with Saffron, even with the self harming that he is still doing.  I hope he pulls himself together before I go away, I won't be able to not worry about him!!"
          "When are you off on tour Tap?"  Scarlet asks me quietly.
          "Four weeks, it starts officially."  I smile at her  "We have three gigs in Rainbow in just over two weeks to warm us up.  I'm back for just over a week, then we take off for three months."

Scarlet jumps off the bed and checks on the baby, before coming to sit down in the chair next to me.

          "Are you looking forward to the tour?"
          "Yes and No."  I roll my eyes  "I'm excited about the tour itself, however, It is going to be hard work, a lot of travelling and I'm not going to enjoy being away from home for so long, especially Crystal, Vanilla and Snow.   I'll probably spend most of my time worrying about Crystal, especially with the condition she is in."
          "Yeah and who's fault is that Tap!!"  she laughs at me  "Four babies I ask you .... talk about being greedy!!"
           "Seriously I would have been happy with just one!!"
           "Nilla is well excited!"  she laughs quietly  "She keeps telling me she is getting four new brothers .... she's told me if they are girls she is sending them away because she doesn't like girls."
           "Yeah she has told me that too.  She will never speak to me again she recons if she gets any Sisters."  I laugh  "But you can't really blame her for not liking girls, when she has Coral and Cotton around here ... Brat Princess one and two, are enough to put anyone off having Sisters."
           "I get that, you've got Coral and we have Straw!!  Nightmare Sisters!!"  she chuckles  "Vanilla is okay with Amber, Poppy, Sugar and Marigold isn't she?"  she frowns at me
           "Yeah she's fine, so I really don't understand where she is coming from."  I laugh
           "Why didn't Crystal and the kids come back with you?"
           "My Gran has taken them home.  Crystal was getting tired and overly upset.  Being here wasn't doing her much good.  It isn't really the best situation for Vanilla and Snow to be around either.  I had to tell them a white lie, I said that Saffron had fallen over and cut himself.  I don't really want them knowing the truth, especially with Saffy being thier favourite Uncle.  Vanilla especially loves him and Atlas to bits."
           "That's understandable, you not wanting them to know the truth about what he tried to do.  Vanilla has already had enough loss to deal with - Honey, Sunny, Cinnamon."  she smiles weakly  "I guess Crystal was getting upset over Saffron."
           "Yeah, she is worried about Saffron, but she is also working herself up into a state over not being related to you by blood any more."
          "Seriously, I have already told Crystal, it makes no difference to me!!  To me Sunny, even with all his faults, will always be my Dad, and nothing will ever change that.  Especially not the sperm donor, who I doubt I will ever acknowledge.  Crystal is still and always will be my Aunt and those four babies she is carrying will be my cousins."  she smirks at me

         "The only thing I'm struggling with is you being Uncle Tap."  she starts laughing  "You have already provided me with a Niece, now you have made me a load of little cousins."
         "Yeah Saffron is struggling with that one too!!"  I laugh at her   "I'd prefer it if he carried on calling me bright eyes rather than Uncle Tap, which is now his new wind up!"  This has Scarlet really laughing
         "Even knowing why he was calling you bright eyes?"  she smirks at me
         "Stop!!  I don't believe it, AND I'm changing the subject!!"  I smirk at her  "So, what about your new Rock family? If you are not acknowledging your sperm donor, what about the rest of them?"
         "They are fine.  It is just HIM I want nothing to do with!!  After what he did to Cinnamon, I couldn't!!"  she goes quiet for a moment  "I already know some of them, Shale, Granite, Mace, Slate, T ... and I really like them, which makes it easier for me.  Suddenly I have a Grandfather and tonnes of Aunts, Uncles and cousins who do want to know me even if I am a mixed berry.  It is quite exciting, regardless of HIM!!  Getting my head around Clay being my Brother, and Slate not being just my mate but also my cousin .. that is the maddest thing!!"
          "Yeah, it is a very good job you and Slate never hooked up when we were kids, or things could be very awkward right now!!"
          "Oh shit I know!!"  she laughs sarcastically  "Just imagine if we had.  I bet Ruby STILL would not have come clean and said anything!!  She would have let us get on with it to keep her dirty secret hidden!!"

The door opens and Bay walks in.  He plonks himself down in a chair and just sits there without saying a word.  He looks the picture of misery.  I can still see the tear streaks on his face, as expected his family have taken the news of Gravel very badly.  Alpine especially has been going off his head up in Neurology.  At one point they had to strap him to the bed and they are having to keep him constantly sedated.

          "Are you okay Bay?"  I frown at him.  In reality, I know my question is a very stupid one, but I am not sure what else to say to him right now.

He just stares at me miserably for a moment and shrugs his shoulders.  I know it is very hard for him, like the rest of his family, even before the Gravel bomb was dropped.  Cinnamon not being here to see his baby is seriously weighing them all down.

          "Scarlet I'm sorry!!"  Bay mumbles suddenly  "I should never have doubted you!"
          "It's fine Bay!!"  she smiles at him  "I honestly don't blame you really.  I was confused myself.  I knew about the blue coming from Alpine, but the grey .... it baffled me!!"
         "Mom will be down soon to apologize, she feels awful for what she said to you earlier!!  The last thing we want is to be doing is falling out with you."
         "Don't worry ... the only person I will be falling out with is my lying slut of a Mother!!"  she snaps  "Bay ... do you think it is still okay to call the baby Cinnamon under the circumstances?"
         "I don't see why not.  It doesn't change the fact that he is still Cinn's baby."  he mumbles
         "I'm surprised I haven't seen Mint or Fudge yet."  she mumbles
         "They came down earlier but you was talking to Shale and Granite.  They thought you needed the space, so they left you too it.  They will be back down later.  They are upstairs with Coal and Forrest.  Forrest wanted to see Willow.  Now his phobia has gone, he can officially be his Granddad without scaring the kid half to death!!"  he chuckles
         "That good!!  I'm really glad his phobia has gone!! So much has happened today I can't keep a track of it all!"  this has the three of us laughing.  "How is Alpine?"
         "He is not good.  He is off his head in fact!!" he mumbles  "It was always going to be hard for him today ... he misses Cinn.  You know how he struggles, half the time he forgets he isn't here any more.  When he does remember, he is constantly kicking off and grieving.  I'm not sure he will ever get over it and all this, has just made it so much worse for him.  Forrest and Meadow are really struggling with him up there!!"

The door bursts open, and I am a little amused watching Crimson, who is virtually dragging Ruby, his Mother, into the room while she is protesting.  Maize trails in miserably behind them, and slumps down onto the floor next to Bay.

          "Crimson STOP!!"  she yells at him
          "No I won't stop!!"  he yells back at her  "Hiding away from everyone is not going to make this all go away!!  You owe Scarlet an explanation don't you think, and you aren't leaving this room until you have given her one!!"
          "I think I should leave and let you get on with it."  I mumble as I stand up, like Bay does.
          "No Tap, you stay right there, you too Bay ... what this lying SLUT has done affects ALL of us!!"

I do not think that Ruby appreciated Crimson calling her a lying slut very much.  She slaps Crimson pretty hard across the face.

        "Seriously, don't tempt me to get my cuffs out!!"  he snaps  "You have already put me and Shale in a very awkward position professionally ... by rights we should be arresting you for paternity fraud."
         "What are you on about?"  she snaps 
         "You knowingly put Sunny's name on Scarlet's birth certificate, when you knew Gravel is her biological Father!"  he snaps  "It is a criminal offence and you want to hope Gravel doesn't want you done for it.  He is within his rights and he will know that!!"
        "Crimson shut up!!"  she snaps at him  "You wouldn't arrest your own Mother!"
        "Don't think I wouldn't!!  Dad and my so called yellow Grandfather both learned that lesson remember ... that I can and I will!!!  Slap me again and you WILL end up sitting in a prison cell along with the Berry Hole you created Scarlet with!!"  he snaps at her  "The ONLY reason we didn't disown Dad for what YOU let him do to Saffron is because Saffron didn't want us to.  He didn't want us to have to choose and be torn between him and our pathetic excuses for parents!!"  he is almost yelling now  "But I am warning you, you will be VERY lucky if all of us don't disown you after this!!  Especially if you don't at least TRY to put this right, by Scarlet and Saffron, which up to now you haven't even bothered to do!!  You are a disgusting person!!"

        "You need to calm down and remember who you are talking to!!"  she yells at him
        "Our pathetic joke of a Mother that is who I'm talking to!!  Don't think for one minute any of us should have any respect for you right now Ruby!"  he yells at her  "You and Dad between you have driven Saffron to try topping himself for berry's sake!!  You let Scarlet have that baby without even warning her what might be coming!!  For Berry's sake you didn't even speak out and tell the truth when everyone was ripping into Scarlet over the blue and grey.  You sat there and let her take the shit for your crap!!  Then you ran off and left Mango to deal with your shit!!  You are a PATHETIC excuse for a person and Mother!!  It is no wander our lives are such a mess having a lying slut and a homophobic berry hole as role models!!  Slowly one by one, you are destroying all of us!!"
         "That's not true!!"  she snaps
         "Think about it, there is not one of us that you two haven't screwed up in one way or another yet!!  Me and Cherry, the twins, Straw, Saffron now Scarlet, and we can't forget Honey and what you and Dad forced her to do out of desperation, and look how that turned out!!  You are not fit to be anyone's Mother, and I wish to Berry you weren't ours!!""
       "Don't even bring Honey into this!!"  she waves her hand in my direction  "If you want to blame someone for Honey fading ... blame him and his children, not me and your Dad!!"  she snaps as she glares at me.
       "That was a disgusting thing to say!!!"  Scarlet snaps as she jumps up off her chair.
       "Too right it was disgusting!!  You seriously don't even want to start your crap with me Ruby!!"  I shout angrily  "You can say what the hell you like about me because I'm thick skinned ... but I am warning you right now.  If I EVER hear you blaming Vanilla and Shadow for Honey fading again, especially for Vanilla to hear.  Berry help you!!  Straw's name won't be the only one on that restraining order.  You will be kissing goodbye to any contact with your Granddaughter.  I already don't feel comfortable about her even being around you!!!"

Granite walks into the room

       "Is everything okay?"  he frowns  "We can hear the yelling outside."
       "Seriously, you can just but right out of it!!  This has NOTHING to do with you!!"  Ruby snaps at Granite quite nastily.
       "I think you will find this has plenty to do with me, when it affects my friends and family."
       "You have to interfere in everything don't you!!"
       "Scarlet is my Neice, so yeah, I will be interfering!!" he snaps  "Get used to it!!" 
       "Well Scarlet is just fine, so you should go, get lost!!" 
        "Yeah I guess you would think that!"  he snaps sarcastically  "No she is NOT fine, so I'm going nowhere!!"  he almost yells  "Not only could Scarlet do without all this shit and upset so soon after delivering her baby, Saffron is worrying us sick.  Mel, Forrest, Alpine and their kids are upstairs virtually destroyed and I've got my Dad, Brother, Nephew and Son outside in pieces.  As well as four Brothers who are boarding a plane right now and heading in this direction, because they like the rest of my family, are very pissed that you have kept that girl hidden.  Not just from the Berry Hole, but from us too, when we had a right to know she is our family!!"  he snaps  "Unlike you, I am not going to just take off and pretend like none of this is happening!!"
       "What is wrong with T?"  Ruby frowns at Granite  
       "Are you seriously asking me that question?!"  Granite laughs sarcastically  "Obviously,  he is upset over what Saffron has tried to do to himself, unlike you who doesn't seem to give a shit about your Son!!  After all it is us that have been trying to pick up the pieces of what you and the homophobic berry hole have done to him mentally, not you!!"  he snaps  "Finally T is seeing what a disgusting creature you are!!"
       "Just get lost Granite!!"
      "No I won't get lost!!"  he snaps angrily 

          "You have been sleeping with T for over two years, and not once mentioned to him that you have also been at Gravel or provided him with a Niece!!  The idiot has feeling for you, so obviously he is upset. Especially when he finds out that you went running off from here straight to him earlier when this all kicked off.   Not to tell him the truth about Gravel and Scarlet, but to jump into his bed, for your own pleasure, like nothing was going on here!!  His bed which me and your Son have just had to drag you out of, to bring you back here to explain yourself to your daughter!!  You didn't even bother to get out of his bed to go to Saffron when Crimson phoned to tell you he was being rushed into the hospital because he's tried to take his own life!!  You are disgusting!!"  he snaps  "Your behaviour today has knocked T sick!!  You have just kissed goodbye to whatever the hell was going on with you and T!!  He is done with you, like I imagine a lot of people will be done with you after today!!"  he snaps

Scarlet gets up, takes the baby off Maize and goes to walk out of the room.  She starts to cry.

         "Are you okay Scarlet?"  Granite frowns at her
         "No ... T isn't the only one who is done with her!!  Where is your Dad?"
         "Outside in the corridor with Clay and Amber.  We were bringing them into see you, but we didn't think it was wise with all the shouting going on."
         "I'm going to sit outside with them.  Maybe Shale can fill me in on this paternity fraud."  she laughs sarcastically as she cuts her eyes at Ruby  "I can't stand to even be in the same room as that woman!!  Getting her locked up might do us all a favour!!"
          "Scarlet?"  Ruby shouts after her
          "Get lost!!  It was bad enough we had to find out you was in T's bed when Dad was falling down those steps and fading .... now this!!  What about Saffron ... look what you and Sunny have driven him to ... you really don't give a shit do you!!  If you did you would be there, by his bedside acting like his Mother!!"  she snipes  "And don't think you are EVER having anything to do with my baby, because you are not!!  You have already ruined his life, and he doesn't need you in his life making it any worse!!  I am not giving you the opportunity to hurt him like you have hurt all the rest of us, especially your own children!!  The only thing you have ever cared about is YOURSELF, while you hurt EVERYONE around you!!!  I hate you!!" 
           "Scarlet ..."
           "Go to Hell Ruby!!" she snaps before she leaves the room.

          "Now see what you have done!!"  Ruby hisses at Granite
          "Excuse me?!  What I have done?!"  he laughs sarcastically  "This is all on you!!  You have turned everyone upside down in one way or another, with your dirty secret and your behaviour today!!  Not just my family, your own family and the whole of the extended family is being torn apart by this ... all this upset and destruction going on right now is on you lady and nobody else!!  You only have yourself to blame if everyone turns there back on you after today!!"
          "How could you just sit there and tell NOBODY the truth, not even Scarlet, who had a right to know!!"  Crimson snaps at Ruby  "She has had her Grandfather and Uncles right under her nose for the past twelve months!!  Turmeric has been in town over two years!!  Damn she has had Slate, her cousin right under her nose her whole life and they didn't know it.  Even the berry hole had a right to know she is his child, and Dad faded never knowing who's child he raised, you couldn't even tell him the truth could you!!"  he snaps
          "He didn't want to know who her biological Father was."
          "Liar!!  Sunny told me he wanted to know, he badgered you for years, but you just would never tell him!!"  I yell at her  "The only reason he could not tell Scarlet that he was not her biological Father was because he couldn't tell her who was.  He didn't think it would be fair on her not knowing!!"
          "So why didn't you tell us the truth about Scarlet?"  Crimson snaps  "Why didn't you tell Scarlet the truth about herself?"
          "We were protecting her.  We thought, the rest of you might pick on her for only being your half sister."  she mumbles quietly
          "Bullshit!!!  We would never have done that, she is still our Sister, half or full, that doesn't matter!!  If Dad didn't single her out, after he found out she wasn't his, then neither would we have!!"  Crimson almost yells  "Protecting her, don't make me laugh ... do you call what has happened today, protecting her?!  Just Like you did such a great job of protecting Saffron!!  Dumping him out of our lives so you didn't have to deal with him being gay .... like that is such a crime ... you are disgusting!!"

          "Saffron was different ... we were protecting him too, from your Dad mostly."
          "NO!!!  You weren't protecting Saffron!!  You was isolating him and giving Sunny free reign to abuse him, and Bay for that matter!!!!  Saffron, Bay and Storm all hid the fact that they were gay because of it and they shouldn't have had to!!"  he snaps  "What you SHOULD have done is spoke out and told someone.  You should have booted the Homophobic Berry Hole out and we all could have protected Saffron from him.  You knew what he was doing to Saffron, visiting the Grandparents, mentally and physically abusing him at least twice a week.  You didn't protect Saffron, you were just covering for the homophobic berry hole and turning the other cheek!!!  The only person you were protecting was yourself!!  Saffron is right, you are NO MOTHER to him!!  How could you just sit there knowing what was happening to Saffron, and say NOTHING!!??"
          "Is any of this really anyone's business but my own?"  she shouts at Crimson as she glances around the room at everyone who is staring at her.
          "You are unbelievable!!  Yes it is everyone's business because it affects ALL OF US!!  Like Granite said, we are the ones who are left picking up the peices for your shit - NOT YOU, because you are too selfish!!  You seriously don't understand what you have done do you, the heads you've screwed up, the lives you have ruined!!!"  Crimson laughs sarcastically  "Typical Ruby, she can never admit she is in the wrong or even give anyone a half decent explanation for anything!!"
          "Crimson just shut up!!"
          "No I won't, because someone has to make you see what you have done.  You don't give a shit about the upset you have caused everyone do you!!"  he snaps  "Most of us think if YOU had told the berry hole about Scarlet, all the destruction he has caused would NEVER have happened.  What you have done does not only affect Scarlet, we are ALL suffering for it!!"  he is almost yelling at Ruby  "Cinnamon lost his life because of you, Granite, Shale and Atlas got shot because of you, Mace is paralysed because of you, Slate has had the life of hell because of you. You have destroyed Scarlet, Caramel, Fudge, Bay, Mint ... Alpine is upstairs going off his rocker to the point Mango is worried he might have to section him and have him committed because he might never come back from this!!  We are all breaking our necks to keep this from Lilly because it is going to upset her and switch her off for berry knows how long, and  Saffron, look what all this has driven him to do to himself!!  ALL of your children are totally ashamed of you, and if we all disown you after all this, you only have yourself to blame!!"

        "You can't blame everything that Gravel has done on me!!  she snaps
        "Of course we can!!  Cause and Effect.  You not telling Gravel about Scarlet is what has created most of this mess!!"  Granite snaps  "Gravel has slowly gone off his rocker over the years!!  It ate him up THINKING he could not have children of his own and ALL THE TIME he has had his daughter walking around right under his nose and you didn't bother to put him out of his misery and tell him!!!  Why do you think he stole Slate?!  Everything he has done, people he has abused and faded, was to hide that fact!!"  he snaps  "IF ONLY you had told Gravel about Scarlet, I would have known about MY SON existing!!  Instead I've missed twenty years of his life and had to trip over him to realise he existed. YOU could have stopped everything that Gravel has done to destroy the extended family!!  YOU could have prevented him from turning into the evil berry hole that we now know!!  Just by doing what any decent person would have done and TOLD HIM ABOUT HIS CHILD!!!"  Granite snaps
         "Are you actually making excuses for Gravel!"
         "Hell No!!  I am the very last person who will ever make excuses for that man!!   He has always had an evil streak and I have suffered by his hand probably more than most!!  He is initially responsible for all this upset and destruction, and I hate him for it!!  However, in my book, you are just as much to blame, because you could have stopped it all from happening, just by telling him the truth about Scarlet!!"

Caramel storms into the room with Coal.  I am a little amused that the first thing she does is marches straight over to Ruby and slaps her face, damn hard.

        "What the hell, Mel!"  she snaps as she holds her face
        "We are finished you and me!!  This time you have gone way too far!!"  she snaps  "You and that berry hole, with your dirty secret, have destroyed the only thing we have left of Cinnamon!!"
         "Like you haven't had your own dirty secrets!!  Forrest ... that is a bit of pot calling the kettle black Caramel!!"  she laughs sarcastically
         "Yeah, we had our secrets with very good reason.  Me, Alpine and Forrest were protecting our four kids from being mentally scared by Forrest and his child phobia.  The less people that knew the truth, the less likely it was to get out and the less likely our kids would get hurt.  Our secrets weren't actually dirty, they were necessary to protect the kids, and they haven't hurt or destroyed anyone unlike yours!!"
         "Oh look, and she has brought another one of her dirty secrets with her." she points at Coal.

Straight away I know Ruby is being a prize bitch.  Very few of us actually know that Coal is Caramel's son.  This makes me worry and I start to get a little nervous.  Ruby could very well drop another bomb that would just about finish today off with an almighty explosion.  She could spill Sunny's gay secret out of spite - which would just about finish everyone off, especially Saffron!!

I glance nervously over to Granite, who is staring at me and biting his lip.  I think he is thinking the same as me ... and wandering if Ruby is spiteful enough to set off yet another bomb.

         "Now you can't tell me that one isn't a dirty secret!!"  Ruby laughs sarcastically
         "You leave Coal out of this!!"  she snaps  "That just proves how much of a selfish bitch you are Ruby!!  What was you trying to do just then, take the heat off yourself by trying to destroy my kids lives even more than you already have!!  I am guessing T has opened his big mouth while he has been knocking the back out of you.  Don't think we don't all know just what you are - school bike, town bike, it will never stop will it!!  More fool T for going there!!  The way you put it about, T needs his head examining keep risking catching something fatal off you!!"
          "It sounds like you are jealous of me and T?"  she laughs sarcastically  "Have I got what you want?"
          "Oh Fudge!!"  Granite starts howling
          "Grow up Ruby!!  You are seriously off your head!!  You are more than welcome to my unwanted cast offs!!"  she is almost raring  "It is just a very good job my three kids know exactly who Coal is, or I would be knocking your block off right about now!!"  Caramel pushes Ruby   "Go on then bitch, tell everyone because I know you are dying to!!"

I laugh watching Bay put his arm round Coal, who smiles at him before kissing his forehead.

         "See ... the cat is already out of the bag!!"  Caramel laughs sarcastically at Ruby as she points at her two boys.  "I'm afraid you will be disappointed to find, there is only Crimson and Maize in this room that probably don't already know, that Coal is my son, and that me and T were stupid 13 year old kids when he was born!!"

The expression on Crimson and Maizes face has me laughing at them.

          "Anything else you want to add Ruby?   Anyone else's secrets you want to spill?  Anyone else's life you want to try and wreck!!"
          "Just get lost Mel!!"
          "You are seriously the one who needs to get lost for all our sakes!!"  she pushes Ruby again  "You and Sunny, should never have had any kids!!  You don't give a shit how you treat them, or what you put them through, just as long as you keep your dirty secrets hidden!!  I thought what Sunny did to Saffron was disgusting, but what I watched you doing to Scarlet earlier was down right evil!!  You sat there and let us all rip into Scarlet accusing her of all sorts, while you sat there and said nothing.  You let her take the insults for your shit, when you knew that Gravel was her real Father and that is where the babies grey hair came from ... what sort of Mother are you!!" she pushes Ruby again  "One good thing to come out of all this for Scarlet, she is a Rock now, and they WILL take care of her from now on  ... and I hope she disowns you, because it is exactly what you deserve!!"

Ruby goes to slap Caramel but Coal and Bay both jump in to stop her.  Bay grabs Ruby's wrist to stop her reaching his Mother.

           "Lay one finger on her and you will live to regret it!"  Coal snaps at Ruby
           "Are you seriously protecting her after she just abandoned you the day you were born!!"
           "T needs to get his facts straight if that is what he has told you. HE is the only one who abandoned me, not that it is any of your business!!"  Coal yells at her   "And just so you know the truth, so you don't go spreading your poisonous bullshit everywhere.  My Mother didn't abandon me!!  Her parents took me away from her, shipped her off to the boarding school and lied to her about where I was!!"  he snaps angrily  "Her parents didn't even let her hold me, she didn't even know if I was a boy or girl until T landed in town two years ago!!"
           "So she says!"  Ruby laughs sarcastically  "More fool you for believing anything she says!!"   

Mel goes for Ruby then, she punches her in the face.  Granite steps in between them, just in time to receive Ruby's retaliation punch.  The punch was meant for Caramel, but landed on Granites face.

          "It is just a good job you are a woman, or I would be bouncing you around this room and out of town right now!!"  he snaps angrily as he holds his now split lip.

He grabs Mel and pulls her away from Ruby.

          "Leave her Mel, she is not worth it!!  You need to calm down and think about those babies and your blood pressure."

Ruby starts to snipe really nastily at Caramel.  Telling her how stupid she is to be having more babies at her age and that she deserves to lose them.  This has everyone kicking off and the room erupts into a lot of shouting which comes from all directions.

      "EVERYONE needs to calm the hell down!!"  Granite shouts quite loudly  "Ruby just shut your damn mouth ... don't you think you have caused enough trouble without making it worse!!"

      "What is going on?"  Turmeric walks into the room with Scarlet and the baby.
      "Take your girlfriend for a walk or something, just get her out of here!!"  Granite mumbles  "She obviously doesn't have any intention of being a Mother to either Scarlet or Saffron.  She just seems hell bent on causing even MORE trouble than she already has!!  Just get rid of her."
       "She can take herself for a walk!!  I've told you, I'm done with her!!" T snaps as he glares at Ruby  "I've only come in here to kick her out!!"
       "Sling your hook Ruby!!"  he snaps  "Scarlet doesn't want you in here and neither do I!!"

Ruby storms over and drags Turmeric across the room away from everyone and they start arguing quite nastily with each other.

Scarlet hands me the baby before she sits down next to Granite, who is tutting and shaking his head, watching Turmeric and Ruby arguing.

                "Can you discharge me."  Scarlet mumbles to Granite
                "I can not treat you medically now, being your Uncle."  he smirks at her  "I will have to go and find Ice.  She can get you and the baby checked over and discharged if you are both okay."  he smiles at her
                "I just need to get out of here!!  Mentally I am struggling and I can not deal with all this shit and you are right.  She is just going to continue creating more and I can't take it!!"  she mumbles

She looks at me thoughtfully then, almost with glazed eyes.

              "Tap, can you or Granite take the baby."
              "What do you mean ... take him?"  Granite frowns at her
              "Take him to Tapestry's apartment and look after him for a few days."
              "Why Scarlet?"  he mumbles
              "I need to see Saffron and I also need space and time to get myself together."
              "Are you struggling with the baby because of Gravel?"
              "Mentally I can't even afford to think about Gravel right now!!  I am struggling enough with Cinnamon not being here."  she chokes as she looks at me  "He is not here for his baby, when he should be.  It's like Honey not being here for Vanilla ... it's not fair!!" 
              "No it isn't, but you shouldn't be separated from the baby, not even temporarily."  Granite mumbles  "He needs you more than most right now!!  Whatever struggles you are having, mentally or emotionally, we can help you though them as well as help you with the baby if you need it."
             "I know, but I can't be around Ruby and go back to that house!!  I am now homeless.  I need to find somewhere to live, and I can't do that with a newborn baby in toe."

              "We can help you with all that.  Don't think you have to do anything alone!!"  Granite frowns at her.  "I thought you and Cinn had your own house."
              "We did.  It was stupid me living in that house alone, when others needed it more.  I sold it to Carmine and Fern, so they can start the family they want.   I moved back in with the so called Mother, because Crimson didn't think I should be alone when the baby arrived."
              "Crimson was right, you shouldn't be alone.  Cinnamon not being here is enough for you to cope with without all this added shit ... I'm sorry!!"
              "It's not your fault is it!!"  she tuts  "You didn't cause it, the sperm donor and slut did!!"
              "You and baby Cinn can move into ours."  I smile at her
              "You have enough people squatting there right now Tap.  You don't want me there on top of everyone from Forrest's house ... yet again because of Gravel!!"  she laughs sarcastically
              "It doesn't matter!!  They are only there for a few weeks, and most of them are your new Rock family anyway.  I think if Granite has any say in it, that is probably where you will end up anyway, with them."  this has Granite laughing as he grins at me.
               "You do realise my Dad is going to suffocate you from now on don't you!!"  he laughs at Scarlet who grins back at him.  "He would want you living with us, especially if you now feel you are homeless."
               "Living at ours, there is no rush, you can take your time to sort out your permanent living arrangements.  Besides it will probably help Crystal feel a whole lot better about the situation.  You being there showing her none of this makes a difference to your two's relationship.  It will help stop all the upset that she doesn't need with this pregnancy!"
              "It will also be good for Saffron too, to have you living there."
              "Okay, as long as you are sure." 

The door suddenly flies open quite violently so we all turn towards it.

Alpine is stood there and he almost looks deranged, standing in the doorway.

          "Where is he?"  he snaps  "Where is Cinnamon."

It feels for a moment like time has frozen, as the room falls into a sudden deadly silence.  Everyone is so still and silent, nervously watching Alpine, wandering what he is going to do, and how his question is going to be answered.   Everyone is now looking at Bay and Caramel, they should know how to answer his question.

         "Tapestry has got him Dad."  Bay smiles at him
         "Not the damn baby!!"  he snaps  "Where is Cinn?"
         "What do you want Cinn for Dad?"  Bay is now humouring him
         "I want to know how he feels about all this Gravel rubbish!"

Alpines head has obviously gone because he still thinks Cinnamon is alive.   I for one am holding my breath knowing how Alpine goes when he loses it, and he will if he remembers that Cinnamon is not with us any more.  He is no different to me when I have an emotional outburst.  His head switches off and he totally blows.

         "Where is he?"  he snaps again  "Scarlet where is Cinn?"
         "You know where Cinn is you idiot!!"  Ruby snaps sarcastically  "He is buried in the cemetery!!  Gravel faded him months ago!" 
         "Ruby YOU IDIOT!!!"  Bay yells at Ruby

If Ruby's words actually register with him, we are in trouble.
I am now holding my breath again, expecting Alpine to explode ....

... and I think so is everyone else.


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