Saturday, 25 April 2015

Chapter 42 - Gen 2 - Tapestry

As me and Omri stand in the safety of the corridor, staring out of the open doorway, we are both a little baffled and astonished as we closely watch Shadow playing outside in the sunshine with Cosmic and his cat. 

Shadow had done a disappearing act earlier, we could not find him anywhere, which really panicked us.  We thought he was asleep in his cot, so we took our eye off him for a while, and when Omri went to check on him, he had gone.  After searching the den from top to bottom, discovering where he actually was ... outside ... panicked us even more!!

Shadow had climbed out of his cot, somehow picked the door lock to escape the room he was in, and had then climbed up the main staircase, two flights of stairs, and up onto ground floor level.  Shadow had dragged a chair to the door, which he climbed onto so that he could reach the door release button, and busted himself out of the den, and outside.

The little boy is scaring me with some of the things that he is doing, especially his strength and intelligence, which definitely do not fit with him still being in a toddlers body.

He is not a naughty boy, just a very head strong and inquisitive one.  Since the day that Honey sat him outside in the sunlight, he has not stopped harping on about it.  He has kept on asking continuously to go out in the sunshine, he even says he likes it, even though he keeps on saying that Honey is naughty for burning him.  He did not like the rats out there, but he liked being out in the warm sunshine so he keeps telling me.

I have tried to explain to him so many times, since that day, that he is a vampire and he can not go out in the sun and he can only go outside at night.

I guess he has just proved otherwise!!!

We are watching Shadow in amazement, who is running around outside during the daytime, laughing and squealing like any normal toddler would be playing outside in the fresh air.  The hot sun's rays, surprising, do not seem to be affecting him in the slightest.  Cosmic is outside and watching him very closely, the slightest sign that it is affecting him and he will be straight inside.  He has been out there for over half an hour, that we know to, but still I am not comfortable about him being out there!!

It seriously does not make any sense with him being a vampire, for the sun not to be burning and disintegrating him.  I take a few steps forward, moving out from the safe shelter of the doorway, and stand out in the direct sunlight.

"You crazy fool what are you doing?!"  Omri shouts at me as he tries to pull me back inside.

"Leave me, I want to see how long it takes."  I snap at him

"Sometimes Jazz you are a stupid idiot!!"  Omri snaps at me as he watches me with concern.

I stand out in the strong sunlight, regardless of Omri's protests.  It does not even take a minute before I can feel the sun's rays burning into my skin painfully.  I hold my hand out, the pain of the sun's rays hitting it, is excruciating, and I can actually see the dark smoke starting to rise off my skin as it starts to blister.  Omri yanks me back inside.

"What are you trying to do ... destroy yourself!!  Idiot!!"  he tuts at me   

"Damn that hurt!!"

 Omri grabs my hand and takes a good look at the blisters that have bubbled up on my skin.

"You know that is going to hurt you for days, and it serves you right!!  Don't come moaning to me when you are in agony or your hand drops off!!"  

"Don't be so dramatic!!"  I start to really laugh at him  "Oh Omri sometimes you kill me!!"

"Cast your mind back a few years, that idiot that we had living here, Mars.  He thought he knew it all, especially about dodging sunlight, you remember he was always flitting about in the daytime, he used to come back in some chronic states, sometimes he was hardly recognizable he was burnt so much!!"

"Yeah I remember, he stood in the living room and slow cooked!!  It took him hours to disintegrate while bits of him kept dropping off."  I start laughing again  "It was the funniest thing I have ever seen, especially when he lost his head!!"

"It is not funny Jazz!!  Sometimes the cooking process as you call it, does not stop even after you have come out of the sunlight!!  You saw exactly that happen to Mars!!"

"Chill out Omri!!"  I laugh at him  "I was out there for less than two minutes, a few blisters is nothing compared to what he used to do to himself!!  Man you fuss worse than my Mother sometimes!!"

"Yes mate, and as I remember it, your Mother was ALWAYS having to try and talk some sense into you because of all the stupid stuff you used to do!!"

Omri smirks at me and we both stand there laughing for a while as he keeps giving me sidewards glances which sets him off laughing again.  He is probably, like I am, thinking about some of the stupid stuff that we did as kids.  Generally the stupid things we did were my not so bright ideas that I always used to drag him into, which usually ended up getting us both into trouble with our parents. 

"Talking about my Mother, it is that time of year again.  It is your turn to take a trip out with Cos, to check on our families."  I glance at Omri nervously remembering that I had to come back last time to tell him that his Father had passed away which really cut him up.

"Jazz ... I am not sure I can face doing it anymore!!"  he looks at me glumly  "Why do we do it to ourselves, when we just get hurt every time!?  You know we are going to have to watch ALL of our family members fade away one by one, with our immortal lives, it is inevitable.  My Mother and your parents are getting old and close to their time, we always expect to outlive our parents, but my wife and children ... I could not take it!!  I have been watching you torment yourself over having to live for the rest of eternity without Celeste and it has made me think ... I would just rather not know when it happens, that would just hurt too much!!"  he closes his eyes for a few moments and just stands there, I know he is getting upset.  "We have to live for eternity with our demons and I know mine are never going to leave me!!  I know I will have to deal and accept it one day, but for the next seventy years or so, I can at least hope my children are still happily walking this earth!"

"I guess ... it must be harder for you, I don't have children to worry about."  I smile at him sympathetically and I understand completely where he is coming from.  "You talking about demons ... It is the guilt that eats me up and I don't think it really hit me until we turned you.  I know my parents have always presumed I was murdered because of Ice's statement, even though they only found my blood but not my body, so they have had some kind of closure at least.  However it is you, you are still listed as a missing person, you vanished without a trace or reason.  They are probably still wandering, hurting and looking for you ... we did that to them!!"  I roll my eyes at him  "Sometimes I wander what they must be thinking, it is pretty mad with us being best mates since we were in our diapers and we both just go and vanish!!  Both of our families are probably still waiting for our bodies to turn up!"

"I know, we have the same demons, that also gets to me too!!  Even though they knew I was only given six months at most and I would have been long gone by now anyway.  However, the way we went about it, it is never going to be final for them is it!!  They will have to live with it for the rest of their lives, wandering why and what happened to me."  Omri mumbles miserably.  "I quite often think now, I should have just accepted my fate and let my illness take me, it would have been so much easier for them.  I was selfish and I don't think I will ever forgive myself!!  Like it was not bad enough for them, my vanishing act just made it so much harder for them."

"You should try not to beat yourself up so much, it was my stupid idea and my fault, you should not blame yourself when I did not think it through properly!!  I should have known better, You were not in your right mind, so scared at the time at the thought of fading like most mortals are because they don't know there is another world beyond the mortal one."  I roll my eyes   "I keep trying to tell myself, I know I was stupid, but fate had you running into the immortal me down that dark alley for a good reason ..."

"Yes I guess I could look at it that way, but it will never make it right for them will it!!"  he rolls his eyes  "It is not like we can go back now and fix it ... and I have to admit ... it takes all of my willpower, when I am so close to them, to stop myself from stepping out of the shadows and saying look here I am, I am fine, you can stop wandering and hurting now."

"Yeah I know that feeling ..."  I mumble  "I have been tempted to do that myself!"

"So we are agreed ... no more home visits?"

I just nod my agreement and smile as we exchange a meaningful glance.  We both look outside and stand silently with our thoughts, watching Shadow and Cosmic running around.  They are playing tag which amuses me, Cosmic does not stand a chance even with a head start.  Me and Omri both start howling as we watch Shadow shoot at speed in front of us, catching up with Cosmic in seconds, Shadow grabs his lower legs and rugby tackles Cosmic to the ground.  That kid is just amazing.

"You know Omri, I am beginning to think Shadow is something else!!  He is doing things not even the originals can do!!  Now he is walking around in the daytime like he is a mortal!  He is a day walker like the wereberry's!!"  I laugh as he rolls his eyes at me.  "It's almost like he is half mortal / half immortal.

"I think that sun has gone straight to your already tapped head and puddled it completely!!"  he laughs at me.  "He can't be half mortal and half immortal, he is either one or the other!!"

"No, think about it logically Omri ...."

By rights, Shadow should never have been born.  From the moment the venom took a hold of him, he should have frozen as he was, but he actually grew and developed inside the womb just like a mortal baby, which I never expected.  He is now growing just like a mortal child, which is something that had worried me, I was scared after he was born that he would remain a baby forever!!  He eats mortal food without a problem, he is always downstairs scoffing Limes food, if we tried it we would be throwing up for days, he has not had a bad reaction from the food once, I actually think his body is digesting it.  He sleeps like a mortal, whereas we have not slept a wink since we were bitten.  Then there is his vampire side, he does everything that a vampberry or vampire does, and more ...

"Now he is running around in the sunlight and it is doing absolutely nothing to him!!"

"He could well just grow out of these things when he gets older."

"I am not sure that he will!!"  he frowns at me  "If his body is tolerating these things now, why would it ever change?  He does not even crave blood like we do, he can eat mortal food, and that seems to satisfy his appetite just as well.  It's like he has the best of both worlds.  He can be a vampire or a mortal and survive as either."

"I don't know I would go that far!!"  he laughs at me  "He still has a heart that does not beat, his body still runs on the venom running through his veins, he is a vampberry and I think when he grows up these things might well balance themselves out and he will just be a normal vampberry or original like the rest of us."  he smiles at me  "Don't forget, this is all unknown territory with him being born a vampberry, everything might change by the time is a young adult, you could well just be over thinking everything.

"Omri there is nothing normal about Shadow, he is special ... just look at him for berry's sake ... he is running around in the sunlight, growing, eating, and sleeping just like a mortal!!  He is already showing signs that his vampire abilities are greater than an originals, hell some of the things he is doing, I have never seen or heard of before!!  What is that face touching thing that he does all about?!  He fried my brain the first time he did it to me, he doesn't even need eye contact to get into anyone's head, and he connects physically with spirits for berry's sake, who does that?!"

I point outside towards Shadow who has just punched Cosmic's leg and has the spirit hopping around and holding his leg like he is in pain.  We both stand laughing at them, especially Cosmic who is almost crying like a baby.

"Okay, I guess I can see some of the points you are making."  Omri laughs  "Can you get into his head, because I can't!!"

"No, he throws it straight back at me and laughs while he is doing it, the little monkey!!"  we both laugh  "Just like Tapestry, Shadow has special abilities and I seriously would not be surprised if he has not inherited some of it from Tapestry being his biological Father, who for a mortal is seriously something else!!  It is almost like they both have a foot in both the mortal and immortal worlds, both of them doing things they seriously should not be able to do!!"  I laugh nervously  "You know it scares me, if Tapestry and Shadow do ever get together, jointly I am frightened about what they might be capable of doing together, especially if they get that Father and Son bond going between them!!"

While me and Omri are talking I glance back to watch Shadow and Cosmic.  I frown at Shadow as I notice he has stopped suddenly and is just staring at me.  I wander why he is just standing and staring at me intensely while I am talking, almost like he is listening to our conversation.

"You don't think he can actually hear what we are saying quietly from out there do you?"  I frown at Omri who laughs

"Knowing Shadow, on his current form, probably yes!!"  Omri chuckles

Suddenly Shadow takes his attention off me, he swings round and stands there staring over towards the wall.  Cosmic tries to tickle him and he brushes Cosmic off, and continues to stand there staring.  Something else that he can do that vampberrys and vampires can not do, he can physically connect with spirits which I seriously do not think that I will ever get my head around.  Up until now we have always thought that spirits were the strongest of us immortals, because nothing and nobody can physically touch them.  Now that Shadow can, I am beginning to wander, just exactly what is he?!  As it stands he is already showing signs of being one on his own.

"Gangy is coming!!"  he starts to squeal, then starts to run towards the wall.

I am a little surprised because as yet I do not hear Sunny coming, I frown at Omri who shrugs his shoulders and shakes his head, he does not hear him either.  We both stand and listen and it takes another few seconds before I start to pick up on Sunny's thoughts and the sound of his beating heart.  That boy must have heard him coming a good minute or two ahead of us.

"Cos grab him!!"  I shout quickly  "Don't let him see how Sunny is getting in, or we might just have him escaping the grounds completely!!"

Cosmic grabs him and turns so that Shadow is facing us just in time for the wall opening which Sunny slips through quickly before it closes behind him.  Sunny looks a little shocked and I hear what he is thinking as he spots Cosmic stood outside holding Shadow.  Obviously he can not see Cosmic, all Sunny can see is Shadow suspended in mid air, which I should imagine looks a little frightening from his point of view.  Sunny drops the food shopping bags on the floor as he watches Cosmic put Shadow down, who automatically runs to Sunny.

"Me's outside in the sunshine!!"  Shadow giggles at him 

"Yes I can see!"  Sunny replies but he is frowning at me as he picks him up and carries him quickly inside.  I just stand laughing at the concern and confusion on his face and the thoughts running through his mind.  Cosmic is left to bring in the shopping bags which Sunny has now completely forgotten about.

"It seems your Grandson has another mortal string to his bow.  The sunlight is doing absolutely nothing too him."  I hold out my blistered hand to show Sunny  "Unlike me!"  his eyes widen as he stares at my hand then checks Shadows skin which is unmarked, I can hear the panic running through his head.

"You know, he actually feels ... warmer than he normally does!"  he frowns at me as he holds his hand on Shadows forehead like he is checking his temperature.  "I nearly had heart failure when I saw him outside!!  Are you sure the sun is not harming him?"

"See for yourself, he's as happy as larry, he is loving it, his skin is unmarked and he has been outside for over half an hour, whereas, I was out for two seconds and you can see what it did to me."  I start laughing  "The pain was excruciating and I was smokin!!"

"Why take him out?"  he frowns at me  "Why risk it?"

"It wasn't through choice, trust me!!   He escaped when we were not looking!!"  I laugh at Sunny as I point to the chair  "He let himself out, the sneaky little monkey.  I think we are going to have to do something with that door to make it Shadow proof, although I am not sure what, because he even managed to pick the lock to unlock his bedroom door!!"

We walk down the two flights of stairs and corridor quietly as we make our way to Shadows rooms.  I keep myself amused listening to the thoughts running through Sunny's head which are pretty comical sometimes.

"Gangy, what did you bring me?" 

Shadow asks as soon as Sunny has put him down on the floor, he does not generally hold him for too long because he can not take the coldness that comes from the boy.   Sunny has made a rod for his own back, keep bringing Shadow little presents when he comes to visit, now he expects something every time he visits.

"I am not sure that you have been a good boy!"  Sunny frowns at him. "Pulling your little escape stunt!!"

"Me has been a good boy!!"  he says dramatically  "Ask Daddy!!  Me's not hurt, me's not run off or broken anything - I only went outside with my cat, so where is the drama!!"  

Omri turns away and I can hear him sniggering behind me.  I feel like laughing at what he has just said myself, and hearing Omri is making it very hard for me not to join him. What comes out of his mouth sometimes is so grown up and it is very comical coming out of a toddlers mouth. 

"Oh just give him whatever, or we will not hear the last of it!!"  I mumble trying not to laugh  "He has been very good up until his little escape trick!!"

"Yay!!"  Shadow starts to laugh and get excited.

"Granddad will give you your present on one condition!!   In future you ASK to go outside and one of the spirits will take you - it is not safe for you to go outside on your own!!  I am not happy that you ignored me when I said you could not go out!!  Go out on your own like that again and there will be no more presents for a whole month!!"

"Okay Daddy me ask!"  he says quietly then he turns to Sunny  "Me have present now!  Me be a good boy, no more escaping!!"  he grins at Sunny and we can not help but laugh at him.

"Shadow how did you open your door when it was locked?"  I frown at him.  He giggles as he pulls a key out of his pocket.  I frown at him as I check my pocket, it is not my key.  "Where has this key come from?"

"Honey gives it Lime."  I am shocked for a moment and ask him how he has it.  "She did not want it, Lime asked me to give it to you, but me forgets."  I ask him how long he has had the key and he just shrugs his shoulders.  I think he must have had it for a day or two because Honey has been locked up since yesterday.

"I am seriously going to swing for Honey!!"  I snap at Sunny.  "You see, this is the sort of shit we are having to put up with ALL the time ... Honey gave Lime the master key for berry's sake, she could have just walked right out of here if she had a mind to!!  Your daughter will be lucky to see this year out, I am seriously losing my patients with her antics!!"

Sunny just stares wide eyed at me but does not say anything because Shadow is now pulling on his hand waiting for his present.  Sunny laughs at him as he pulls, what looks like, a brand new PSP out of his pocket and hands it to Shadow.  He tells him there are two games with it and next time he comes he will bring him some new games.  I am surprised because he usually only brings him small things.

Shadow starts squealing when he takes the PSP off him, and starts to inspect it, he tries to press a few buttons then the smiles drops off his face.

"Not a phone!!"  he pouts  "Me wants a phone!!" 

I laugh at Shadow, he must have thought Sunny had brought him a phone.  My hand automatically flies to check my pocket and am happy to feel my own phone still safely in it's place.  Shadow is very good at swiping my phone without me even realizing it.  Sunny also checks his pocket as he laughs, he must know exactly what I am thinking.

"And why do you want a phone Shadow?"  Sunny laughs at him

"Me wants my own phone to talk to my friends!!"  he mumbles sulkily.  I can see he is not very happy as he stares down at the PSP that is sat in his lap.

"You mean you want a phone so that you can pester me with a thousand phone calls a day, more like!!"  Sunny laughs  "I am sure your Dad agrees with me, you are no where near old enough for a phone yet!!  When you are a bit older then we will think about it!!"  he frowns at Shadow then  "Besides all your friends live here, so you do not really need a phone do you Shadow!!"

"Me is old enough!!  I can read and count and me knows how to work a phone easy."  I can not help but laugh at some of the the things he says sometimes  "Me wants to speak to Tappy, he is my friend!!"  

"Your cat does not have a phone Shadow!"  I frown at him wandering why he keeps on insisting about talking to Tappy on the phone, he has mentioned it a lot lately and it is really starting to bug me.

"No not that Tappy silly!!   Do you not know yet that cat's do not talk!!"   he says with attitude almost like he's the adult and we are the children.  "Me wants to talk to T a p e s t r y!!

"Oh fudge!!"  Sunny chokes

Hell!!  All this time I thought he was talking about his cat and he wasn't!!  I just stand and stare at Shadow who now is fiddling about with the PSP and trying to fathom how it works.  I stand quietly and watch as Sunny shows him how it works and how to put the game disk in.  When Shadow is happily playing away on the game I pull Sunny to one side, out of Shadow's earshot, not that it makes much difference, he can probably still hear us as well as hear Sunnys thoughts anyway.

Probably one of the biggest mistakes that we have made, is having Sunny around Shadow, the boy is capable of reading his thoughts and picking through his head to find any information that he wants.  By the time I realized how stupid I had been it was too late to part them, especially for Shadow. 

"I AM going to swing for that daughter of yours, this is all her fault!!  I knew we would not get away with her letting Shadow see Tapestry!!  I hoped he would just forget about Tap after a while!!"  I roll my eyes at Sunny  "Obviously he isn't forgetting him is he!!"

"Well I did warn you not to let him keep calling that damn cat Tappy didn't I!!"  Omri scoffs  "I told you this would happen!!  He is never going to forget that night in the cemetery when he named the cat after him!!"  he laughs then  "Storm is not helping either!!  I caught him and Shadow watching the music charts on the television the other day, of course Tapestry's song came on, Shadow recognized him straight away!!  I suspect it is not the first time that Shadow has seen Tap on the television either because he knew the other guy with him was called Rocky!!  Plus Shadow sat there singing the song like he had heard it before!!"  he pulls a face  "Storm did not act like he knew Tap, but he still let Shadow sit there watching it when he knows he saw Tap in the cemetery!!"

Sunny had brought the cat for Shadow a few days after Honey had let Shadow sit talking to Tapestry in the cemetery.  Shadow insisted he wanted to call the cat Tappy and he turned away every name that we tried to suggest for the cat, our favourite being Marmalade but Shadow wouldn't have it, even when we started to call the cat Marmalade, Shadow continued to call him Tappy, and we eventually gave up.

Now I hear that Shadow is seeing Tapestry on the television ... trying to keep Shadow and Tapestry apart, I can see now that this is turning out to be a total nightmare.  I am now seriously at a loss about what to do to avoid the car crash that I can see is heading in our direction!!  I get a horrible feeling that Shadow is not going to let this drop until he gets to Tapestry.  Here was me, when all this started, thinking that it would be Tapestry who would be the problem and it would be him we would struggle to keep away from Shadow.  Thanks to Honey Shadow is the one, and I seriously would not be surprised if he does not already know that Tapestry is his real Father.

"Where is Honey anyway?"

"Oh so finally you remember to inquire after that nightmare child of yours, that you have lumbered me with!!"  I laugh at him sarcastically.

"What has she done now?"

"She is locked in her cage, you might guess, she has been playing up again.  She has been hanging around Mango's house again stalking Tapestry!!  Like an IDIOT Storm told Honey that he was home from his travels!"

"I'm sorry!!  I rue the day I made you turn her ... I know I should have just let her go like you and Mango begged me to!!"  he frowns at me  "I don't get why she keeps doing it, she says she has no feelings for Tapestry and it's not like she is interested in Vanilla, so why does she keep stalking him?"

"Your guess is as good as mine, I have tried talking to her about it, but all I get is attitude!!"  I mumble  "I have a sneaky feeling it might actually be Crystal that she is trying to get her hands on not Tapestry!"

 "She had better not!!  I have only just found my sister, if Honey does anything to Crystal, I will be disposing of her myself!!"  Sunny snaps  "Oh berry!!  Wait until Honey finds out Crystal is pregnant and Tap and Crystal are getting married.  I am not telling her because I know it is just going to send her off on one!!"  Sunny mumbles  "Quite frankly, she scares the hell out me when she roars!!"

"SHE is going to blow this whole thing apart, I can see it!!  The way she is carrying on someone is bound to see her eventually"  I pull a face at Sunny  "I think she has also already done too much damage, letting Shadow see Tapestry, and it is only a matter of time before this blows right up in our face!!"

"Tapestry does not have a clue still!!  He has gone very quiet about the night in the cemetery, he does not even mention it anymore.  I think he has brought the drunken hallucination and has forgotten about it."  Sunny mumbles

"Well I hope you are right!!"  I smile at him  "Are you still up to watching Shadow later?  It is River night tonight and I need to get out of here for a few hours before I go totally crazy!!"

"Yeah, I have got the rest of the day, I might even stay over."  he smirks at me  "I have told Ruby I'm going over to Apple Falls to spend the day with my parents.  I am not sure she actually believed me, she knows I am hardly speaking to them at the moment."  he laughs  "I swear she thinks I am having an affair!!"

"Omri ... Lime is hungry, she wants her dinner."  Shadow says suddenly


"She wants maccy cheese."  he grins at me  "Me go see Lime now."

"Oh she does does she!"  Me and Omri both start to laugh at him.

I think he is just being crafty, he wants macaroni cheese and he is using Lime as an excuse to get it.  Shadow knows I always moans a little when he asks for food instead of blood, not that I don't want him eating food, but because I worry that he is not taking in enough blood which in my mind is what he is supposed to be surviving on.  I can not hear Lime from up here so I doubt that he can.   I hear a thought flash through Sunny's mind at the mention of macaroni cheese which amuses me.

"Omri I think Lime Sunny and Shadow want mac and cheese for their dinner."  I smile at him  "Don't forget Shadow's blood, he will be drinking that before he eats any maccy cheese!" 

I hear Shadow start grumbling a little, which I thought he might, he is always telling me blood is yucky and he prefers the taste of food.

"Don't forget my choccy puddin!!"  Shadow grins at Omri 

"Blood, macaroni cheese and choclate pudding, you are going to have belly ache!!"  Omri laughs as he starts heading for the door.

Shadow puts the PSP down on the floor and wanders off over to the television and turns it on.  It did not take him long to get fed up with that!  He plonks himself down on the floor and start flicking through the channels on the remote until he finds the music channel.  He sits there singing away to the song that is on, I think we can already see that he has inherited Tapestry's musical talent.  Shadow is always singing and is obsessed with music.

Now I am not happy about Shadow watching the music channel knowing any moment Tapestry could pop up on the screen for him to see.

I decide to take him away from the television and I have the perfect excuse taking him down to Limes cage where he wants to be anyway so he can help her eat her food.

"Where is Maizie, I have not seen her for a while."  Sunny asks me as we are walking down the stairs, distracting me from my thoughts.

"She's running the sewers with Saffy during the day time."  I roll my eyes  "At night me, Cos and Omri have to run the town.  The Raspberry Hill, Apple Hill and Sugar Falls lot keep coming into town, you would be wise not to let your kids out after dark!!"  I pull a face at him  "They think Sugar Valley is easy pickings now that this den is closed down.  They do not realize there are three of us still living here."

"Why not just go and tell them and warn them off." he frowns at me 

"We can't!!  We want the immortal world to forget the three of us exist, and we can't go advertising the fact that we are still here.  They don't know that Honey and Shadow exist and we don't want them making unexpected visits.  The moment any of them spot Shadow, we will be in trouble and have the originals on our back - they will probably try to take him."  I can see the panic on his face as well as hear the thoughts running through his mind  "Once he is a young adult, then we won't have a worry, he will just blend in with the rest of us and they will never know he was born and grew up being a vampire."

As soon as we reach the bottom of the basement steps Shadow demands to be put down.  He amuses me as he shoots across the room to the cage then squeezes himself through the bars in the door, which he can just about fit through, making a beeline for Lime who is sat reading a book.

Lime puts her book straight down and picks Shadow up and starts to make a fuss of him.  Sometimes I think that Shadow prefers Lime over me, and that she is his favourite person in the world. He would live down here with her if I let him, but I think she is the only Mother figure that he has in his life and has become very attached to her.  Honey and Maizie both avoid him like the plague like they can not stand the sight of him and have as little to do with him as possible.  I have already had Shadow asking me why I keep her locked up down here which was a pretty awkward conversation.

It is pretty amazing how Lime has changed with time, it is very rare that I ever hear any of her evil thoughts running through her mind, even when I am hidden from her sight and she does not realize that I am listening to the thoughts running through her head.  Really the only time I ever hear anything nasty it is usually directed at Honey, who is just as nasty in return.  She has totally fallen in love with Shadow, and he seems to have helped to mellow her into a better person.  Even Storm has started to sit down here watching her, I think Lime is slowly starting to grow on him.

I have spent a lot of time down here with Lime since Shadow has been visiting her and we have talked a lot.  I even think she regrets her evil past and is happy down here and does not resent being locked up here any more because she knows this is the far better option, she would rather this than a lifetime in prison and I think that Shadow has a lot to do with her happiness.  Her cage door is no longer locked, she has free run of the whole basement when she wants it, so that she is not totally confined to her cage, not that she ventures out very often.  It is the door at the top of the basement steps that we now keep locked.

I think about the key that Shadow just handed to me.  Lime could so easily have opened the basement door with that key.  I need to ask her about it.

Lime starts to smile when Omri walks through the cage door carrying a tray which contains, a large bowl of macaroni cheese, Shadow's blood and chocolate pudding, which he places down on the table.

"You must have read my mind!"  she laughs  "I was just thinking a while back that I fancied mac and cheese for dinner."

"No Shadow did the mind reading!  He told us what you wanted for dinner." 

I laugh at Lime as I take Shadow off her.   I frown at Shadow for a moment, wandering just how far he can actually hear as I place him in his high chair.  It is a lot damn father than I can hear, I know that much, he has shown that a few times today.

It goes pretty quiet while Lime, Sunny and Shadow start to eat their food.  I glance over to Honey's cage and see she is standing by the bars just quietly watching and listening to everyone, while she drinks the blood that Omri gave her when he first came down with the food.  I can see the scowl on her face and doubt she will be quiet for long.  Sunny and Lime, distract me away from Honey, when they start to chat quietly among themselves about the up and coming wedding of his Son Carmine and her daughter Fern.  I hear him promise to bring in the wedding photographs for her to see, then the conversation moves onto Parsley.

I watch with amusement, standing here now watching them, especially Lime, it is hard to believe that she is the same person that we went to school with, the vindictive evil bitch, that did not have time for idol conversation, because she was always too busy bullying and being mean to everyone.  I forget sometimes about all of the things that she has done to us all, especially that it is her fault that I now have this immortal life, because of the new person that she has become.

"That's it you lot just ignore me like total morons!!  While you play happy families over there and I'm left locked up in this stupid cage a lone!!"

 I wandered how long it would be before Honey started.  We all just stare over at her, none of us saying anything.  It is not like she would want to be in here with us anyway, she always wants to be as far away from Shadow as possible and Honey and Lime do nothing but fight.

"Dad help me!!  You need to tell them, they can not keep locking me up in here like I am a naughty child!!"

"Oh suddenly I am your Dad again ... when you want something!!  I am usually the interfering berry hole stinking up the place remember!!"  Sunny snaps at Honey  "You are locked up because you are behaving like a naughty child Honey, when you start behaving like a grown up and stop playing your stupid games, Jazz will let you out!!"

"I might have known you would take his side!!"  she snaps  "You have always been a SHIT and rubbish Dad!!"

"It's not a matter of taking sides!!"  Sunny almost yells at her  "You are a liability, with whatever stupid game you are playing!!  Stalking Tapestry and hanging around Mango's all the time ... the way you are carrying on you are going to be seen by someone, which will ruin a lot of peoples lives especially your Mothers!!  It will destroy her if she ever found out the truth."

"I couldn't give a shit about that red slut!!"

"WELL I DO!!!  And that is exactly why you are stopping in that cage, because you can not be trusted to act like a grown up and follow a few simple requests that are not even unreasonable!!  Even Shadow is better behaved than you!!"  Sunny yells at her  "Just don't talk to me Honey, until you have a civil tongue in your head, especially if you are going to talk about your Mother like that!!"

"Fine!!  You bore me anyway!!"  she snaps.

"Jaaaaazzzzzz"  she says suddenly in that horrible sickly seductive voice of hers, which means she only has one thing on her mind, sex.  She used to use it to manipulate me to get what she wanted, and like a fool I used to fall for it all too easily, but not any more!!

"Forget it Honey!!"  I snap at her while Omri sniggers, he knows what game she is trying to play, because I have moaned enough to him about it, especially when I know I have stupidly fell for it!!  "You have not got a hope in hell!!  I can hardly look at you because of all the headaches you are giving me, I think I would rather have Lime mauling me right now."

"Yeah I bet!!  I can see she's realing you in slowly!!  You want to watch that green bitch Jazz!!  This goody two shoes act of her's is all fake to fool you!!"  Honey switches  "She forgets I can read her mind!!  She is always plotting in her head to escape and expose you all, when you are not around to hear it!!"  Honey spits out nastily  "I would watch your back because one of these days there will be wood stuck in it!!   She's planning to do one and take your precious brat with her too!!"

Lime just stares at me as I stare at Omri while we listen to the thoughts rampaging quite loudly through her head.  I kind of laugh a little at what actually is going through her mind, that if she ever manage to get her hands on some wood it would not be my back she would stick it in, it would be Honey's!!

I think about the key.

"Seriously Jazz I have not!!  She is talking crap!!"  she says calmly when I turn to look at her.  "I think you know I am actually quite happy now being here, well I was until you started locking her up down here!!"

"Why did you give Shadow the key, why not give it me, or Omri yourself?"  I ask her

"I would have if either of you had come to collect him, but you sent a spirit.  I can't talk to them can I, so I told Shadow to give it to you."  she answers without hesitation.

"When did she give you the key?"  she tells me three days ago  "Why didn't you keep, hide and use the key to get out of here?"

"I would be pretty damn stupid to swap this life for a prison one and I think you know it!!"  She smiles at me  "I gave the key to Shadow because I wanted rid of it straight away, just in case she went running straight to you and you found it in my cage and believed her crap!!  I guessed she was up to something."

Honey stands in her cage cackling like a witch. I can tell that it is Lime who is telling the truth and Honey is the one lying.  This is why Honey gave her the key and she is just trying to stir up trouble, as usual.  I swear she thrives on it just like Lime used to.

"I believe her!"  Omri mumbles

"Yeah so do I!"

"Don't you listen to her Jazz, you are stupid if you do!!  She is an evil conniving bitch!!"  Honey yells"She stole that key off me!!" 

"SAYS YOU!!!"  Lime jumps up and yells across the room.  "And just how did I manage to do that mind reading vampire, when I am locked in this cage?!  You are ten times stronger than me and I am not superwoman!!"  she laughs sarcastically  "You need to come up with more believable stories if you are going to play stupid games child ... especially with me!!"

"Honey BIG FAT LIAR!!"  Suddenly Shadow pipes up  "Me sees Honey do it!!  She throws the key in the cage and tells Lime to let herself out and do one!!"

"Oh see, now she has brain washed my kid!!"  Honey yells

"Your kid!!  Call yourself a Mother ... YOU ARE A JOKE!!"  Lime yells back.

Away they blow!!  Honey and Lime start yelling and screaming at each other, the old Lime and especially her viscous tongue comes out and she gives Honey as good as she is getting.  Women are suck vile creatures when they are bitching, especially these two!!

"Me no like Honey!!  She nasty liar!!  I want Lime to be my Mommy not HER!!"  Shadow says as he shuts himself inside his toy box, slamming the lid shut quite violently.  I do not know whether to laugh or cry!!

"I think it is cage building time again."  Omri mumbles to me  "I think these two need separating!!  This is not good for Shadow to have to listen to and it is upsetting him!!"

"I know!!" 

I stand and watch as Lime and Honey yell abuse at each other.  I knew with Honey being turned that this situation was going to be hard ... but I never expected it to be this bad!!  With her losing all of her mortal emotions, it has turned her into an uncontrollable monster and this into an almost impossible situation to deal with.  In normal circumstances I would just have disposed of her to rid us of the unnecessary problems that we are having to go through.  It is only her being Shadow's Mother that is saving her skin, I do not want him to hate me when he is older.  She has pushed me so far that not even Sunny's friendship is enough to stop me from disposing of her anymore!!

I should have stood my ground when Sunny was in front of me begging me to turn her instead of not doing what I knew was best, letting her go.  I notice Sunny is just sitting silently watching all this and does not say a word, he is not even trying to shut Honey up.

This whole Tapestry Shadow situation and keeping them permanently apart, has been made impossible by her.  If we had continued as we started and meant to go on, his name would not ever have been mentioned again down here, for Shadow to hear.  As I stand here now I hear it being slung about by both Lime and Honey, and think about how many times I have said it myself today.  I realize it is constantly being heard by Shadow and we are fighting a losing battle, he himself has Tapestry's name etched into his brain. I have seriously made a right balls up of this!!

Cosmic and Storm come floating down the stairs laughing

"I love a good cat fight!!"  Cosmic laughs  "We can hear the squealing from upstairs!!"

"I thought I had better warn you, Tapestry is going with River to your hide out tonight to see you and Omri."  Storm smiles at me.

Suddenly the lid springs off Shadows toy box and he pops up.

"Me come Daddy, me want to see Tapestry!!" Shadow says as he grins at me  "He's my friend!"

"NO!!  You can not see Tapestry!!"  I shout at him quite sharply. 

I can see that I have now upset him, it is not often that I ever have to shout at him and he does not like it when I do.  Lime stops yelling at Honey and rushes over to pick Shadow up, she just glares at me like an over protective Mother would.  I just put my head in my hands while I am shaking my head.  This situation is getting to me that much, now I am taking it out on Shadow when I should not be!!

"I am Sorry Shadow!!  Daddy didn't mean to shout!!"  I smile at him  "We will talk about you seeing Tapestry later!"

"Oops Sorry!!"  Storm mumbles as he stares wide eyed at Shadow and covers his mouth.

Storm starts to mumble his apologies, he thought that Shadow was asleep upstairs seeing as he could not see him.  I tell him to shut up and forget about it, he was not to know he was hiding in his toy box and the damage was done way before he just opened his big mouth!!  Everyone just stands staring at me, they can see I am getting angry.

I tell Cosmic and Storm to take Honey up to the cold room, out of my sight, and to lock her in there and guard the door while I work out what we are going to do with her. 

While the spirits are wrestling with Honey, I watch Lime as she sits down on the floor with Shadow and they start to read a book together.  Shadow is reading Lime's book to her, and it is not a children's book that he is reading either.  He is pretty amazing for a toddler, he can read any book in the book case perfectly, whether he actually understands what he is reading is a different matter.

"Can you move her out of the basement, or put a brick wall up between us, so me and Shadow do not have to see or hear her!!"  Lime asks as she looks up from the book.  "I am sick of her upsetting him!!  She says some vile things to him when you are not around!!"  she pulls a face  "Just please don't stop Shadow from coming down here because of her!!"

I stand and smile down at her for a moment.  I had not thought of that, building a brick wall.  I was only thinking about building another cage somewhere else in the den well away from this basement.

"Actually that is not such a bad idea!!"  I smile at Lime who looks worried for a second and I hear what flashes through her mind.  "I think that is exactly what we will do, build a wall between the two cages."   she smiles with relief, she thought I was going to stop Shadow from visiting her.  "However, I am going to to stop Shadow coming down here, but only until the wall is built."  her face drops a little  "I think you know yourself, he should not be around this!!  Hopefully it should only take us a few days to get that wall up - I want this headache over as quick as you do and I think you know Shadow will be giving me a headache over not coming down here!!"

Lime is not happy about the few days break away from Shadow, but she understands why I have to do it.  Sunny is starting to irritate me when he continues to ignore the commotion going on and shows no concern while Cosmic and Storm drag Honey up the basement steps.  Instead he mutters  "Peace at last!!" then turns on the television and he lies down making himself comfortable on Limes bed.

Suddenly I start to get really narked, his daughter is causing us a right nightmare and he is kicking back on the bed like he doesn't have a care or worry in the world!!  He is not the one having to constantly deal with all his daughters shit ... I am!!  It is his fault that she is here at all, in vampberry form!!

"Make yourself at home Sunny like you don't have a care in the world, while you leave me to deal with your headache!!"  I snap at him sarcastically  "Is the bed comfy enough for you, would you like me to fetch you another pillow?" 

"No I am fine thanks!!"  he mumbles without taking his eyes off the screen.  I think he is only half listening, engrossed in the TV program that he is watching, he does not even react to the sarcastic tone in my voice.  Sometimes he is a joke!!

"I would take your shoes off mind, or you might have the Mrs yelling at you for dirtying her clean sheets."  Omri starts sniggering.

"No he can keep his shoes on!!"  Lime snaps  "I am used to him messing up my sheets, which I would much rather he did than having the stink of his feet!!  Have you smelt his feet!!"

"Oh so that is what you two get up to when I leave you alone together down here!!"  I laugh  "Messing up the bed sheets hey, you kept that one quiet!!"

"Grow up Jazz!!  Me and Lime are you having a laugh!!"  Sunny snaps  "Shadow is always here with us remember!!  She reads and plays with him while I relax and watch TV.  It is the only time I get any peace and quiet to watch the television without having my head pecked!!"  he pulls a face at me  "Compared to my house, it is peaceful and cosy down here, I do not know why Lime is always complaining."

"When was the last time you actually heard me complaining Sunshine?!  You are the only nag around here!!"  she snaps  "If it is so bad at home and you like it so much down here then you are welcome to it!!"  Lime laughs sarcastically  "It was nice and peaceful until your yellow brat moved into the cage next door!!  I am sure Jazz can find you a bed, then maybe you might try controlling that nightmare brat of yours!!"

"There you go Sunny, Lime just offered to share her pad with you!!"  I laugh at the pair of them who are both pulling faces at me  "We can get that bed changed for a double one in a flash if you want, and I am sure the wife won't mind sharing you!!  After all she is very caring and sharing herself, as I remember!"

Sunny cuts his eyes at me, he hates it when any of us remind him of what the three of us used to get up to at school with Ruby.  I know he doesn't like it but I feel like digging at him right now!

"Daddy can I have a school bike?"  Shadow suddenly asks innocently  "Me can rides it outside in the sunshine."

"OH BERRY!!!"  I choke

Sunny lies there frowning while me and Omri just fall to pieces and howl in hysterics because we heard what Lime was just thinking.  Shadow has obviously just picked up on the word bike, because Lime was thinking about Ruby being the school bike.  Of course Shadow is thinking of a bike with wheels, he does not understand what the term 'school bike' actually means.

"Shadow your Granddad is the best one to ask about school bikes"  Lime smiles at Shadow, I don't know how she is managing to keep her face straight.

"Gangy can you get me a school bike?!   I don't want a red bike called Ruby like yours."  Shadow mumbles  "I want an orange one!"

"What the hell have you lot been telling him!?"  Sunny snaps quite nastily as he sits bolt upright.

"Nothing!!"  I can hardly speak for laughing as I point at Lime  "He heard what she is thinking!!"

"I was just thinking about Ruby, the red bike that you all used to have so much fun riding all around school until you broke it when that rubber thing burst!!  That's all!!"  Lime says trying to look innocent.  Sunny just scowls at her in response

What she has just said totally cracks me up!!  Especially as all she actually thought was "Oh yes I remember Ruby, Sunny's red school bike."

"Naughty me, I forgot for a second that Shadow is listening to my thoughts.  I doubt he really wants to hear about how his Granddad was naughty at school and broke the school bicycle" Lime smirks  "You spoiled the other boys fun when the bike was sent away to be fixed!!  They really enjoyed riding that bike!!" 

"Just shut up Lime you are not even funny!!"  Sunny snaps at Lime nastily.

Lime suddenly starts thinking loudly.  "Shadow you should ask your Grandad to get you a town bike instead, they are better than school bikes.  Strawberry Tart is a nice name for a town bike."

"There isn't any Gravel outside is there Jazz?"  Lime says out loud as she smirks at me  "We wouldn't want Shadow to get hurt!"

"Lime Stop ...."   I am now double over and can hardly breath, I feel like my sides are about to split open.  I can't believe she even worked Gravel into it!!  Even though Lime has never met Strawberry, she does not like her very much, mainly because Sunny has stupidly filled Lime in on what his daughter has done to her son, Parsley.

Lime starts to crack up with me and Omri, while Sunny just lies there glaring at us.

"Me no like Strawberry Tart!!"  Shadow mumbles.  "Yakky!"

This just sets the three of us off laughing hysterically again.  Shadow does not have a clue what this conversation is really about or what he is saying innocently, but it is so funny from where we are standing!!  Even Shadow starts laughing but I think only because he can see that we are laughing so much. 

"Okay!!  So why do I get the feeling you lot are having a laugh at my expense!!"  Sunny snaps

"Probably because we are Sunny!!"  I mumble through my laughter 

"Piss off Jazz!!  Don't you have a brick wall to build!!"  he snaps

Yes I do!!  Trust him to be the one to point it out!!

I ignore him, seriously needing this laugh right now.

It is helping to stop me from doing what I really want to do ....

Permanently dispose of his daughter!!


Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Chapter 41 - Part 3 - Gen 2 - Tapestry

I stand there just staring at Dad.  The words "She is Red"  keep bouncing around in my head. My brain does not seem to be able to process what he has just told me, as I stand there and watch him totally crack up. 

I have not really thought about what colour or colours the babies might be.  Colour does not interest me not being able to see it, and I have never been the sharpest tool in the box, so it takes a while for my brain to understand what the colour red means in terms of those babies.  Gravel, Slate and Coral are not red ... so where has the red baby come from?!

"RED!!  WHAT THE ...!?"

I am shocked, suddenly as it hits me.  I realize the red baby must have a red father, who is NOT Gravel or Slate!!  Everything that I have been listening to since we entered this room, all now starts to make sense to me.  That is how they could tell so easily the baby is not Slates, when I was confused, because she is red.  Again I never thought of the obvious, I was not even thinking about it's colour.

"Oh Berry!!  How the hell did that happen?!"

I am not even sure why I stupidly asked that question out loud, because it is not like I do not already know the answer to that question.


"I think that is pretty obvious, your sister is a slut who puts it about!!  And now I've said it!!" 

Granite spits the words out quite viciously as he glances in Corals direction.  I just stare at Dad's face and he does not even flinch at Granite calling Coral a slut, when normally he would have gone ballistic at anyone insulting his precious little princess.

It only just registers with me that Dad is crying, I watch as two tears slowly make their way down either side of his face - it is unlike him to cry.  I have rarely seen him cry and especially not out in public, he is not big on public shows of emotion.  I have also seen him keep his emotions in check over much worse situations than this.  It is not like this situation is life threatening or anyone has faded, it is just a huge embarrassment, especially for him.  I know that Dad takes all of our failings onto himself, like he has failed by not bringing us up correctly, and he thinks our bad actions reflect him in a bad light.  What Coral has done seriously goes against the grain for him, being a stuffed shirt and a prude!!  Dad is usually always the strong one, he is everyone's rock, seeing him crying over this makes me think again about what Forrest told me.  I think he might be right, Dad does seem to be cracking up underneath all the stress that keeps being thrown at him!!

"I'm sorry!!"  Granite mumbles an apology, no doubt to Dad because I doubt very much it would be to Coral!!  "Tap, do you remember what I told you, when we were out in Sandy Shores, about twins who are born with different fathers!"

"Yeah, I remember, fraternal twins, the babies come from two different eggs and two different sperm.   When the two different sperm is not from the same man it makes it that Hetero Parental thingy and the twins have different Dads."  I mumble.  "So basically Corals ovaries released more than one egg in a cycle and because Coral was sleeping with three different men at that time, she has gone and got herself pregnant by two of the men."

Dad's eyebrows raise and he looks at me in amusement for a moment as he wipes the tears off his face.  I bet he would never have expected me to know that, but I have been paying a lot of attention to menstrual cycles and baby making stuff because of Crystals problem.

"Yes that is exactly what your sister has manage to achieve here!!"  Granite smiles at me.  "So with the arrival of the red baby, a third person has also now joined the equation, Gravel, Slate and Mr Red.  Coral has omitted to tell any of us about the third red person she was sleeping with!!"

I am just standing there completely numb, not really being about to take in what she has done.  Just how many people is she sleeping with exactly?!

"Tapestry do you know who Mr Red is?"  Dad asks me

"No!!I frown at him  "Shouldn't you be asking her that question?!  I am not the one who has been sleeping with him!!"  This makes Granite chuckle. 

"She refused to tell me or Ice who Mr Red is."

"I notice she can keep her mouth shut!!  It is just a shame the dirty slut did not do the same with her legs when she was supposed to be in a relationship and marrying my son!!"  Granite snaps angrily

"Granite maybe you need to take five and step out for some fresh air.  I can see you are starting to get angry, and I honestly do not blame you, I am livid myself!!  The last thing we need is you losing it, you need to keep yourself together for Slate's sake!!"

"I'm sorry Mango, but this is seriously starting to wind me up!!"  he rolls his eyes  "Her constant game playing - I do not even think she cares or realizes just how she is playing with all of our lives and emotions!!  Like she has not already destroyed Slate enough ... now she does this!!"  he pulls a face  "Like it was not already bad enough, I now have to go out there and tell Slate, who's confidence is already dented, that there was a third person in their relationship, who is responsible for one of the babies that he is expecting to be his!!"  he is now almost in tears  "This could well finish him off, especially if this one is Gravels!!  She and that brother of mine have already driven him to an overdose once, now I am scared that all this might drive him there again!!"

Dad and Granite start talking between themselves again.  I think I already knew that both of their main worry here has always been Slate, especially if neither of the girls turn out to be hisThe arrival of this red baby has made the already bad situation, a hell of a lot worse.  All the time that they are talking, I know that Coral can hear them, just like I can.  She does not say a word or move an inch she just lies there, probably without a conscience or a care, especially about what she is putting Dad throughShe could so easily put a stop to all this mystery and wandering over Mr Red, but she does not say a word!! 

"Did you or have you seen her hanging around with anyone who could be the culprit?"  Dad turns and ask me  "Or do you have any ideas about who it could be?"  he frowns at me  "If you are keeping her secrets, then now is definitely the time to spill them, for that babies sake!!"

I am starting to get a little annoyed with Dad questioning me over something that Coral has done, as well as annoyed with Coral who is lay not too far away listening and keeping her mouth shut when she knows all the answers!!  What is stopping her from telling us who the babies Dad is?!

I suddenly feel like a little child again, being interrogated by him because he is trying to get to the bottom of something that one of us triplets has done.  I think he has always thought that because we are triplets that we have a special bond and we know each others every secret and what each other is up to every minute of the day.  Mosaic and Coral might have that bond, but I have never been a part of their gang and he should know that, and especially that me and Coral have always been more like arch enemies than siblings.

"No, I am sorry, I have not been keeping tabs on my sisters obviously over active sex life, besides Juni I don't even know who she hangs about with!! I smile at him. "I am always the last one to know anything as well you know, and she definitely does not share any of her secrets with me!!"  I frown at him  "Besides I think you forget, I was kind of a little tied up at the time if you remember ... down in the sewers ... or has everyone forgotten my abduction already because brat princess number one is putting on an epic performance!!"

"Oh Berry!!  Tap I am sorry, I was not even thinking straight ... of course, you were not even around at the time!!  This would have all happened during your abduction."  he stares at me wide eyed before he turns to glance in Corals direction.  "I wander ...?!"  he says thoughtfully.

Dad stares over at Coral for quite a while but he does not tell us what he is wandering or thinking.  I can see the expression on his face, which usually means his brain is ticking, almost like he is trying to figure something out or remember something that he has seen.  He turns back to me with the oddest of expressions on his face.

"We need to know where this red baby has come from!! I have a very bad feeling about this and a suspicion about who it might be and when it happened!!Dad frowns  "I do not even understand why she is trying to hide his identity, it is not like she can pretend it has not happened when everyone will see that baby is red!!"

"Where is Mo, she is most likely to tell him."  I frown at Dad  "Mo might actually already know who he is, those two are as thick as thieves!!"

"Mosaic does not know, I have already phoned him.  He is as disgusted and shocked as we are, you know he is very close to Slate, and you might not have noticed, but your brother and sisters relationship has totally fallen apart since Slate's alcohol poisoning and overdose."  he frowns angrily in Corals direction   

"I need to go out and talk to Slate.  I need to go and soften the blow before the paternity test comes back."  Granite mumbles quietly  "If the worst does happen, and this is Gravel's child, I can't go telling him about the red baby at the same time as I'm telling him about this one, it will tip him over the edge!!"

Dad and Granite stare at each other for a moment.

"Tap, stay with your sister."  he smiles at me  "Me and Granite are just going to pop out there to explain to Slate that one of these babies is definitely not his and that Coral was not only sleeping with Gravel behind his back, but also someone else."  He stands there shaking his head for a moment with a look of disgust on his face. 

I just stand there, still a little numb, as I watch Granite put the baby he is holding in the crib. Dad moves closer to me and starts to talk to me quietly, probably so that Coral can not hear him.

"We will give you some space, talk to her, see if you can get her to tell you who Mr Red is."  he whispers quietly.  "If she will not tell me, for whatever reason, she might tell you."

They start to walk out of the room leaving me standing there.  I can see how much this situation is upsetting him!!  This is going to turn Mom's lights out for days, when she hears this and Berry help her when Granddad Muffin finds this out, he is very old fashioned and an even bigger stuffed shirt than my Dad!!  He is already carrying on to all four of us for not getting married before the babies started arriving.  He did cut me a little slack because of Honey fading, but the moment he found out that Crystal is pregnant, I started to get the same earache that the others have been getting.  He was already not impressed with the Slate and Gravel situation, he is going to explode when he hears about Mr Red, and no doubt Dad will cop an ear bashing from him as well!!

"I do not know why he is so bothered about Mr Red!"  Coral snaps sarcastically and very stupidly before Dad is completely out of the room or has closed the door behind him. 

Dad hears her and slams back into the room.

"Because young lady, obviously you might think this is one big joke, but nobody else does!!  I have got no words to describe how I feel about this situation.  I dread to think how many and who you have actually been sleeping with!!  You totally disgust me!!"   he yells at her.  "You stupidly get yourself pregnant by Berry knows who, then you can not even be bothered to act like their damn mother!!  You lie there with your back to them refusing to touch or even look at either of them!!  You are not fit to be their mother and I think both of these babies are going to need their Father's because I doubt you will be any sort of Mother to them, if the way you treat your Niece and Nephew is anything to go by!!"

Dad is virtually blowing a gasket and I can understand why!!  I did not know that was what she was doing with the babies, this makes me angry.

"That baby has a right to know who her Father is - think about River for a moment and what he went through.  Then think about the Dad he also has a right to know, just like I did!!"  he shouts  "But I doubt anything I say will make a scrap of difference, you will obviously continue to do what you want, because you love the attention and you do not care about what you are putting anyone else through, all you care about is your damn self!!"

FINALLY ... he gets Coral!!

Dad is now in tears again. He slams back out of the room in a foul mood and I can see where he is coming from and why he is getting so angry and upset with her.  However it also makes me think about the Shadow situation, his reaction just confirms to me that if that boy is mine he would not be able to hide it from me.  He has either had the boy wiped from his memory or he is not mine.

The red baby starts to cry probably because of Dad shouting and the door slamming so I pick her up and quieten her down.  When the baby has stopped crying I walk round the bed so that I can talk to Coral.

Coral is just lying there with her eyes closes, I can see the tears rolling down her face. 

"So what are you going to her?"  I ask thinking if this one is not Slates, then she will be coming home with Coral.  "We can't keep calling her red baby!"

When I speak to her she opens her eyes, when she glances up at me and sees that I am holding the red baby her face twists up. 

"Take the brat away, I do not even want to see it!!"  she snaps  "You can call her whatever the hell you like because I do not really care!!  Now get rid of it before I start screaming!!"

"What the fudge Coral!!"  I frown at her  "Why do you not want to see your baby?"

"Because I do not okay!!  I do not want either of the little brats, just get it out of my sight!!"  she snaps as she closes her eyes so that she does not have to look at the baby any more.  "I knew you would be too thick and stupid to see or realize I already can not stand your horrible little squealing brats that we have in the house!!"   This makes me really angry.   "I hoped they would both be Slates so I could be rid of them!  That one especially should never have been born and I seriously don't won't it!!"

"What the hell is wrong with you?!  How can you even say something like that, and especially to me of all people, when I have a baby buried in the cemetery that I would give anything to have here!!"  I snap at her and she just laughs sarcastically.  "Mind you I guess I should have known, this is just another one of your childish games, and you are just way too selfish to be anyone's Mother!!"

"Get lost retard!!  Don't you start!!"  she snaps  "I have already had all this off Ice and Dad, and you don't have a brain to think for yourself, so no doubt you will only be repeating what you have hear him saying!!"  she snaps.  Oh here she goes with all the low blows!!  "Just put that brat back in it's cot and get lost, I want to be left alone.  Actually, better still take them with you when you leave and lose them, their snivelling is giving me a headache!!"

"You are a prize BITCH and seriously bang out of order!!  Why did you even have them in the first place if you don't want them!!  Oh, stupid me, I forgot, it was because you couldn't keep your legs closed!!"  I snap sarcastically at her, I'm already sick of her digs and I can also play her game.  "I thought I was stupid but, hell, this is seriously messed up!!  You are a dirty whore, sleeping with THREE people at the same time!!  You have seriously upset Dad and now your halo is round your ankles with your knickers, so I guess Cotton is his number one princess now!!"  I snap  "Dad has been way too busy on my back over my behaviour all these years, when it should have been you who he was talking to not me, because I have never done anything anywhere near this bad!!"

"Oh No!!  What is that noisy little yellow brat that you have at home then!!"

"Vanilla is not a brat, she is my daughter, your Niece and you ARE going to stop talking about her like that!!"  I snap at her  "At least I was only sleeping with Honey, she was my girlfriend and I am being responsible and taking care of my mistakes.  You, you can't even look at yours, and as usual you have to create some big scene around the whole thing - you don't even know who the FATHERS are for berry's sake, TWO of them, what a joke, but that is what you get for being a dirty slut!!"

"Oh shut up!!  Just because you are some stupid rock star, have little brats of your own, and everyone thinks the sun shines out of your backside suddenly ... it does not mean you suddenly know it all or have the right to say anything to me!!"  she snaps  "You are still and will always be the thick, trouble making, stupid, retarded idiot!!"

"No you shut up you evil selfish twisted BITCH!!  I would actually rather be a retarded idiot than anything like you!!  I actually hate you!!  You and Gravel were actually made for each other!!"  I snap at her  "You have been on my case since the day I was born and Mulberry was right about one thing, you have outdone anything I have ever done and you have not stopped yet!!  But that is what you are all about isn't it, you always have to go one better, drama queen!!  Well you are definitely winning an Oscar for this one!!"  I laugh sarcastically  "I remember you all being on my back over Honey and me not taking precautions ... yeah I made mistakes but I'm looking after my mistake, but hell you are taking it to a whole different level!!"  I snap at her  "So while you were handing it out on a plate to every man in town - what happened to your precautions Coral ... hell and I thought Strawberry was bad!!  She is a dirty whore too!!  It seems we have two bikes in town only Straw is not stupid enough to get herself knocked up!!"

"Get lost idiot!!  I was on the pill, THIS was not supposed to happen!!"  she starts to cry loudly again, I can tell it is all false.  "You should be feeling sorry for me not shouting at me!!"

"Turn off the water works actress, you don't fool me!!  Me feel sorry for you ... Never in this life!!   If you ask me you got exactly what you deserved, you dirty slut!!  It's those babies I feel sorry for having you as their mother, you can't even love them because the only person you love is yourself, the poor things don't stand a chance!!"  I snap at her "You are seriously no better than Crystal and Snow's parents, I seriously do not understand how anyone can be THAT SELFISH to turn their back on their own babies and NOT love them!!  You make me sick!!"

"Well you have them then seeing as you seem to like the noisy, smelly little things so much!!"  she snaps  "You was quick enough taking that colourless brat in ... you can take those two away and do me a favour!!"

"Are you for real?!  It is just a very good job for you I am holding your baby right now or I would be punching your lights out!!"  I almost yell at her  "Hopefully the brown one will be Slates and he will be taking her anyway, but if you do not want the red one then she should be with her Dad!!  So why don't you tell me who Mr Red is, then he can come and take her." 

I frown at her as she just lies there refusing to tell me as she shakes her head.

"You do actually know who helped you to create this red baby don't you?!"  I snap at her sarcastically  "I bet you have been messing about with a married man haven't you and that is why you won't tell us!!"

"Of course I know who he is, you moron!!  Who and what he is, is none of your damn business either, so get lost!!"  she snaps  "Don't think you are earning yourself any brownie points with Dad either because you are the last person I will be telling ... so do one and don't forget to take the brats with you!!"

"Come on Coral, you know you can not keep it a secret forever and Dad is right, he really does have a right to know and so does she!!"  she continues to shake her head  "Who is Red in this town?  There can not be too many red men - or is it that you have been through them all and you do not know which one it is."

"Get stuffed you moron!!"  

Coral just lies there silently as I start to think.  I am at a disadvantage being colour blind, I could not tell you what colour most of the people are in this town, and I do not bother to ask because it does not really interest me.  There are only two family that I know for sure that has red in them - The Shines and Cardinal's, a guy who works in Neurology with Dad.

"Is it one of Sunny's boys?"

Suddenly she goes totally ballistic at me, screaming and yelling all sorts of names, as well as screaming at me to get out and leave her alone.  She sets both babies off crying, which seems to unhinge her even more.  Coral just lies there with her hands over her ears screaming the place down, yelling at them to shut up, which makes them cry even more.  The bitch has lost the plot!!  I stare at the two babies who I can not just leave alone in here to cry while she is kicking off.  I take the other baby out of her cot, and walk out of the room, a baby in each arm.

Slate is sat crying, Bay has his arms round him and Dad and Granite are standing not too far away staring at the door, looking a little distressed, probably wandering what all the screaming is about.  When Slate looks up and sees me holding the two babies he starts to crack up, which makes me feel bad because I bet the last thing he wants to see right now is this red baby!!

"I am sorry!!  I could not just leave them in there with her, she was scaring them to death and after what she was saying to me, I was worried she might hurt them.  The bitch has gone psycho as you can probably hear!!" 

Dad tells Bay to take Slate up to his office, he can wait in there where it is quiet until the paternity test comes back.  I get the feeling that Dad wants Slate out of the way so that he does not get any more upset.  Granite puts his arm around Slate and talks to him for a moment then lets him go off with Bay.  Granite comes over to me and takes one of the babies off me, I presume the brown one, while Dad goes into Corals room.

Dad seems to be in the room for ages.  Me and Granite just stand and stare at each other a little wide eyed, all we can hear coming from the room is both Coral and Dad yelling and screaming loudly at each other.   Dad comes rushing back out with a face like thunder and I can still hear Coral screaming, as a hail of abuse follows Dad out of the door.

"Did she tell you?"  Dad asks me

"She would not tell me who Mr Red is, but when I asked her if it was one of Sunny's boys, she went totally ballistic.  The screaming started when both babies started crying."  I frown at Dad who is now stood there rubbing his neck looking all stress out again.  "Dad she says she doesn't want the babies. She told me to get rid of them, she even told me to take them!!"

"Yes I know!!"  he rolls his eyes  "Suddenly she decides to tell me that she does not want them because she does not like babies and children, which I think is all an act because she never had a problem with Cotton when she was a baby!!  She told me to put them up for adoption, she wants nothing to do with them."  Dad frowns  "This is seriously getting ridiculous, and why we really need to find who that red baby belongs to, because I get the feeling, she might have to end up with her Father, if Coral does not drop this stupidity!!"  Dad looks at Granite and raises his eyebrows.  "And if she is Gravel's ..."

"Let me guess!!  Just to twist the knife that she has already stuck in Slates back ... if she keeps this nonsense up, then I am going to be left holding another one of Gravels offspring!!"  he laughs sarcastically  "This just keeps getting better and better!!"

"Oh course, this could just be the onset of post natal depression, or the shock of the red baby, she might not have been expecting it herself!!"  Dad mumbles

"Dad, don't start ... defending and making excuses for her like you do all the time even when you know she is in the wrong!!  There is nothing wrong with her - this is just Coral being Coral!!"  I snap at Dad  "A selfish heartless drama queen bitch!!"

"Slate suggested we try the Shine twins, when Coral and Slate were together, they used to spend a lot of time with Carmine, Fern, Maize and Juni."  Dad ignores what I have just said to him as he whips out his phone.  "If she is not going to tell us who Mr Red is, then he can tell us!!"

"And he's off!!"  Granite starts really laughing at Dad  "The man is on a mission!!"

Me and Granite just glance at each other and laugh.  I think we both know what Dad is like when he get's a bee in his bonnet over something.

"We will actually start with Sunnys boys as they are the most likely."  Dad smiles at us  "That baby has colourless hair and eyes which is VERY STRANGE and really bugging me!!  We already have the mad colourless eyes, now we have the hair creeping in.  After Affair and Cherry's triplets turning out colourless when it is genetically impossible for them to be colourless, and with Crystal turning out to be a Shine, it seriously would not surprise me if Mr Red turns out to be one of Sunnys boys!!  That baby is screaming out another Orchid / Shine strange genetic combination to me."  

He looks thoughtfully at Granite for a moment. 

"Granite just in case I'm wrong, get thinking - every red man in town that you know, I'm at a disadvantage here I'm colourblind!!"  Dads eyes widen as he looks at Granite  "Cardinal! He is red isn't he!"  Granite doubles over laughing and I chuckle because I have also thought about him.

"Mango don't please!!  She wouldn't ... would she?!" 

"After Gravel, now this, I'm ashamed to say I would not put anything past her, age did not stop her with Gravel, so why should Cardinal be any different!!"  Dad mumbles

"What if it is not one of Sunny's boys."  I ask

"Then I am going to hound every Red guy in this town, starting with Cardinal, until I do find him!!"   

Dad grins at me, but sarcastically, as he looks at his phone then starts to dial a number.  I start laughing with Granite when he calls Sunny.  He walks off down the corridor while he is talking to Sunny so I do not know what he is saying to him, but don't doubt that he will be turning up pretty soon.  

I am not too impressed that Sunny is now on his way here, it means I have to face him, while I have tried my best to avoid him.  I just hope I can hold my tongue over the Shadow situation!!

Dad and Granite take the babies back into Corals room which has now gone quiet.  I sit out in the corridor a little bemused, this is so messed up it is seriously not funny!!  It takes less than five minutes for Sunny to turn up at the hospital, he looked very flustered.  He tells me that Scarlet has gone round to ours to help Phoenix and Ruby watch Mom and the kids and that Crimson has gone to pick up the twins.  He asks me where Dad is and I just point to the door of Corals room.

After quite a while, Sunny, Dad and Granite come out of Corals room and stand in the corridor talking while we wait for Crimson, Carmine and Maize to turn up. 

"Well I would put a bet on it being one of your boys."  Dad says to Sunny  "So which one do you think it might be Sunny?"

"Berry knows!!  I honestly can't see it being any of them.  Maybe Crimson at a push as he is the only unattached one, but that boy is having a love affair with his job, he doesn't have time for anything else."

"I think it's one of the twins, not sure which one, but Tapestry reminded me of something earlier, this would have happened part way through the abduction, around about the time when everyone was still camping out at ours during the day time."  he rolls his eyes  "I remember seeing Coral whispering and giggling in corners a few times with one of the twins, and I did not think anything of it at the time."  he smiles at Sunny  "I can't say which one because I can't tell those two apart anyway, unless they tell me who is who."

"Well I think we can safely say who it is not going to be ... Saffron.  He being yellow and everyone knows by now he is one of his filthy disgusting lot!!"  he points in Granites direction without even looking at him.

"Excuse me?!"  Granite snaps at Sunny  "What did you just say?"

"I think you heard me alright faggot!!"  Sunny snaps "What you are is downright disgusting and dirty, there should be a law against it!!  Better still you should be locked up to rid society of your dirty filth!!"  Sunny snaps  "They should also be doing something about that house of sin that you are running!!  You and your lot are sick abominations that should have been drown at birth!!"

"Wow you twisted berry hole!!"  is all I can think.  I did not even realize that I had said it out loud until Sunny starts to cut his eyes at me.

Granite goes for Sunny and Dad jumps in between them to stop them from fighting.  I grab Granite and pull him back while Dad stands there trying to keep them apart.  I know that Sunny is angry with Saffron for going to live at their house with Atlas, and letting everyone see finally that he is gay, but there is no need for him to attack and take it out on Granite!!

I can not help but wander how Saffron keeps his cool if this is how Sunny talks to him all the time, he has told me it is bad, and now I see just how bad.  I can't believe that Sunny just came out with it so blatantly like that!!  It just came out of nowhere, even I have never been that inappropriate!!

"Hell Sunny!!  We have enough problems here without you slating Granite for his sexuality and causing a fight over it!!  He has never said a bad word to you and that outburst of yours was seriously uncalled for!!"  Dad yells at Sunny  "Anyone would think he had just touched you up for Berry's sake!!  Grow up Sunny, he's not interfering with you so what difference does it make who he is sleeping with, it's his life!!!  Keep your stupid opinions to yourself!!"  They stand there just glaring at each other for a moment  "It is no wander Saffron hates you, and can't wait to get out of this town, if this is how you carry on with him!!  You have seriously messed that boys head up!!"

"Saffron is none of your business Mango so but out!!"  he snaps at Dad  "Why are you defending him, them anyway? Surely you must agree it is not normal!!

"I am defending him because you are way out of order as usual Sunny!!"  Dad snaps at Sunny  "It is perfectly normal to them being gay, like being straight is perfectly normal to us.  It is in their genetic make up, controlled by their hormones, it is not like they have a choice!!  Just because you don't understand or agree with his sexual preference it doesn't give you the right to slate him like that, so loudly and in public!!  Behavior like that belongs out in the coded world, not here!!"

"Don't give me that rubbish ... it is not a choice my ass!!  That Atlas and Mace have both been with men and women.  Slate he is another one, because he has been corrupted by Bay!!  Bay has got a lot to answer for, first he corrupts Saffron now Slate!!"  Sunny snaps at my Dad.

"Nobody is corrupting anyone you dick head!!"  Granite starts raring at Sunny  "You are either gay or you are not!!  You can not be talked into it and we definitely do not force ourselves on anyone who is straight like you are trying to make out!!  Berry hole!!  As for those who sleep with both sexes, it is called being Bisexual you jerk!!  Bisexuals are attracted to both sexes, which is what Slate and Atlas are.   In Mace's case, he is strictly gay.  He was only with a woman because he was forced to hide what he is, gay, because he had a narrow minded twat of a father!!  Just like you are with Saffron, making his life a total living hell and trying to beat it out of him because you don't like it and are too ignorant and selfish to even try to understand your son, you prick!!" 

"Just back off faggot!!  You might be happy about Bay dragging your son into your filth, but I sure as hell am not, he should have left my son the hell alone and kept his dirty hands to himself!!"  Sunny snaps. 

"Did you NOT just hear what I said!!"  I can see how angry Granite is getting as Dad tries to hold him back from going for Sunny again. 

Now I am starting to get a little angry at him constantly digging at Bay. 

"Sunny you need to lay off Bay, you are starting to make me angry!!"  I snap at him  "Bay has done nothing wrong, I don't get why you are blaming him or Granite, for that matter, just because you don't like the fact that Saffron is gay!!"

"Oh I might of guessed you would join in!!"  he snaps at me sarcastically  "I'll tell you what my problem is with Bay!!  First I catch Bay messing with my boy, then there is Storm if those rumours are true, now Slate!!  Three ordinary normal boys until he got his dirty filthy hands on them!!"  he snaps  "The biggest mistake I made was not telling Alpine to sort his perverted son out!!"  Sunny points at Granite  "And you, what are you doing, running a knocking shop for puffs!!"

"Shut your mouth you prick before I fill it with my fist!!"  Granite starts raring and Dad has to grab him to stop him from going for Sunny again.  "Mango is right!!  Twats like you belong out in the coded world!!"

I seriously can not believe what is coming out of Sunny's mouth and I don't blame Granite for being angry.  I have to laugh in a way because Sunny has an obsession with their house, constantly going on about it and calling it the 'house of sin' just because there are now three gay couples living there.  Their house is no different to ours, we have three straight couples living in our house, but because they are gay Sunny thinks they just have to all be sleeping with each other and having a gang bang!!

"Sunny you are very wrong about what is going on in their house and Bay!!"  I snap at him  "You can't blame Bay for anything, when they were all born gay!!  As for Bay messing with Saffron, the way they tell it, wasn't it the other way round "  I smirk at Granite  "Did you not walk in on them and it was actually Saffron who was the one giving Bay a ..."

"DON'T you even say it!!"  Sunny rares nastily as he points his finger at me

"BLOW JOB"  Granite coughs out loudly from behind his hand which he is holding over his mouth and sniggering behind.  Me and Granite burst out laughing.  Even Dad has a little giggle after I see his eyebrows raise a little, I doubt he even knows that story.  Sunny looks like he is about to explode but I don't give him a chance to say anything.

"Saffron and Bay were in a relationship that they both wanted!! After you sent Saffron away, Bay and Storm had a relationship again because it is what they both wanted ... and yes the rumours are true, Storm was gay, he told me!!  Slate, like Granite said, is Bisexual, and he chooses to be with Bay now, so what?!  After what Coral has done to him it is no wander he has been scared off women!!"  I laugh and Granite also finds it amusing.  "And I'll tell you something else Bay didn't start any of the three relationships he has had, Saffron, Storm and Slate all jumped on him!!  So you can back off and leave Bay alone!!"  

"Yeah Whatever ..."  he snaps but I do not give him a chance to finish his sentence.  I point my finger at Sunny quite nastily.

"Actually YOU are the one that has made all their lives hell!!"  I snap at him "Storm and Bay were breaking their necks to hide their sexuality and relationship because of you and the way you reacted when you found out Saffron was gay!!  They were scared that Alpine and Prelude would react in the same way.  Then Saffron comes back here a grown adult STILL having to hide being gay because you don't like it and had filled everyones heads with girlfriends that have never existed!!"  I snap at him. "I have known since I was a kid that Saffron was gay and have had to sit watching you constantly lying to everyone!!"  I suddenly think about the Shadow situation and can not help but have a dig at him.   I wander what other lies you are telling Sunny."

"Shut up Tap!!  What worries me, is you are their next victim to corrupt, you seem to know a lot of their secrets and seem to be pretty close to all these gay boys!!  Standing here defending them ...." 

"Oh Please!!  Do you know how pathetic you sound and I'm supposed to be the idiot here!!"  I laugh at him sarcastically.  "Yes I am close to all these gay boys, as friends, but it does not mean I am going to jump into bed with them, or that they could persuade me too, not that they would even try!!  They respect that I am straight like I respect they are gay"  I snap at him  "Saffron, Slate, Storm and Bay, they are the only ones apart from Honey, who treated me decently all the time I was growing up.  They did not picked on me or judge me because of my disabilities and conditions, like everyone else and especially you!!  Because they are also judged and picked on, by people like you, because they are gay.  We understand each other, we know how it feels to be isolated and judged for being something not 'normal' and treated accordingly, so yeah, we are going to be close, because we have had to suffer the same sort of shit all our lives, from people just like you!!"  I snap at him again

"I noticed you are getting way too pally with Saffron and Atlas lately!!"  he points at me  "Which reminds me, I do not like that you let Saffron and Atlas take Vanilla out and especially not there to that house and I want it to stop!!  She is there right now with them and she shouldn't be!!"

"And what?!  It is not for you to like or dislike!!  You are always quick to tell other people to but out of your kids business so you can but out of mine!!"  I snap at him   "She is my daughter so I will choose who she spends her time with and where she goes!!  Saffron, Atlas, their home and everyone else who lives in it, are perfectly fine by me!!  Just because Saffron is gay it does not mean he has any less right to spend time with his Niece if he wants to."

I am starting to get really angry with Sunny now, as he stands there just scowling at me because he does not like what I have just said.  I can feel myself starting to get very wound up and start to go off on one.   All the time that I am looking at him I can not help but think about Shadow which is seriously winding me up.

"It looks like it's too late, they have already brainwashed you!!"  he snaps  "You let my Granddaughter go into that house where they practice their sin and they are even harboring a murderer for berry's sake!!  Now he definitely should be locked up for both of his crimes!!"

"You leave Mace out of this!!"  Granite goes for Sunny again until both me and Dad grab him  "Innocent until proven guilty Mate!!  It was self defense and Mace would not normally hurt a fly ... the man is not capable and he is in a wheelchair for berry's sake!!"  Granite snaps at him  "Maybe I should get Elderberry to fill you in on her gay best mate!!  She's a Special in the police force and if she doesn't have a problem or worry with Mace, then neither should you!!" 

"It doesn't matter how it happened or who he has sucked in - the queer has still faded someone!!"

"LIKE YOU HAVEN'T!!"  I yell at Sunny and everyone looks at me then a little gone out.  It is not that I am defending Mace, I hardly know the guy, but Sunny is seriously winding me up!!  "Honey and my baby faded because of you!!  You faded them!!!"

"Don't talk rubbish!!"  Sunny snaps at me

"You made Honey's life hell because you didn't like me and my disabilities!!  You didn't want her anywhere near me, because I was the idiot moron who was only going to drag her down, get her pregnant and dump her and the kid, remember!!"  I snap at him  "Well I am not dragging your sister down now am I, and that is just one of many things that you got wrong about me, Vanilla especially!!"  I almost yell at him sarcastically  "You all know me and Honey planned that pregnancy and you forced us to do it!!  You forced us into thinking a mixed berry baby was the only way to stop you from sending her away to Uni or Sugar Falls, neither of which she wanted!!  We were trying to stop you from treating us like you treated Saffron and Bay, sending her away out into the coded world to keep us apart ... and look how that turned out!!"

"You can't blame me for Honey and Shadow fading!!"  he snaps then laughs sarcastically.

"Well I do blame you!!"  I yell at him

If you had left us alone, Honey would never have faded because there would not have been a pregnancy!!  The pregnancy that faded her!!  I did not want to do it, but it was our only way to stop you!!"  I yell at him  "And what about Saffy?  Did he really fall out of that tree or did you push him?!"  Sunny looks shocked for a moment  "I think you was sat up that tree arguing because you could not hack that your own identical twin brother was GAY!!!"

"Saffy was so NOT gay!!"

"Oh yes he was!!  Ask your parents!!"  I laugh at him sarcastically  "You are in denial, you knew it and this is why you have such a problem with gay people because of your brother.  You also know Saffron is gay because of you!!  He is gay because it is in your genes and you passed it onto him!!"

"You need to SHUT UP right now Tapestry!!"  he snaps at me and we both just stand there glaring at each other.  I know I have hit a nerve and I think he knows, I am sailing a little too close to the wind with what I am saying - he knows I can see and speak to his brothers spirit and if Granite was not standing here I would be saying a hell of a lot more.

"I know I'm far from perfect, but I seriously don't like you as a person and if you was not Vanilla's Granddad and Crystals brother, I would have jack shit to do with you just like you wanted jack shit to do with me until Vanilla was born!!"  I point at him quite angrily  "I am also going to warn you, berry hole, if I hear you trying to force any of your overbearing ways and opinions on Vanilla or peddling any of your anti gay crap around Vanilla, especially bad mouthing Saffron and Atlas, who she loves, then you will be gone and out of her life just like Strawberry and kept well away from your Granddaughter!!  You are the moron here not me!!"

"Are you going to let him speak to me like that?!"  Sunny turns to my Dad

"Yes Sunny, I think I am!!"  Dad starts laughing

Dad stands there laughing at Sunny which really surprises me, when I half expected him to have a go at me.  I am angry, I was starting to get really wound up, and it did not help that I was struggling to keep myself from starting to throw the Shadow situation at him.  Granite puts his arm around my shoulder, while he talks to me, trying to calm me down.  I think he knows what happens with my condition, and that I can easily blow, I am actually very surprised that I didn't blow!!

"Which proves my point perfectly!!"  Sunny snaps suddenly  "GET your filthy hands off him!!"

I can not believe it!!  Now Sunny is starting on Granite for putting a comforting arm around my shoulder!!

"Sunny, I am warning you!!  You need to back off Granite right now and SHUT UP with your total rubbish!!  If you carry on, never mind Granite, I will be banging you out myself!!  You SERIOUSLY need to grow up and learn to keep your twisted opinions to yourself!!"  Dad yells at Sunny

They stand and glare at each other for a moment, Sunny does not say anything. 

"We have a more important issue to deal with here, or have you forgotten, that red baby probably being your Grandchild and one of your son's.  Berry help either of the twins if they are responsible for that baby ... Mulberry and Prelude are going to be after their blood!!"

Crimson, Maize and Carmine walk into the hospital together, after what felt like an eternity for us waiting for them to arrive, especially while Sunny and Granite sat there constantly scowling at each other with me and Dad sat between them to keep them apart and I was doing my fair share of scowling at Sunny myself.

"Well, it looks like the same shade of red to me!!"  Granite starts laughing as the three boys approach us, they look really confused and worried.

"What is going on Dad, what is the emergency?"  Crimson starts moaning

Sunny stands there just staring at them for a moment.

"Just hang on there, don't any of you move, I have something to show you."

He says as he disappears into Corals room with Dad.  They frown at me and ask me what is going on, I tell them I do not know as me and Granite start laughing quietly.   I am not going to be the one who tells them!!.  

Sunny walks out with the red baby, which all three of them stare at.  He holds the baby right next to Crimsons skin after he has told him to hold his arm out, trying to compare skin colour.

"Yes I would say it is definitely Ruby's red!!"  he mumbles  "Coral has had the babies, two girls who have two different fathers, a brown one and a red one ... so which one of you three is responsible for this?"  

There is silence for a moment as all three of them stare wide eyed at the baby again.  I think I can already tell which one has been sleeping with my sister, by the looks on their faces.

"And don't think you can lie to wriggle your way out of it, because Mango will take your blood and we will find out that way!!"  he frowns at the three boys  "So come on who is responsible for this?"

All three boys just stand there saying nothing.  Crimson is frowning at his brothers while the twins just stare at each other.

"That has nothing to do with me!!  I have been no where near Coral and I wouldn't even if you paid me, she is even dirtier than Straw!!"  Crimson puts his hands up and starts laughing.  Dad's face is a picture.  "Is this why you called me out of work?!  Fudge Dad why didn't you just ask me!!  How the hell am I going to explain this one to Elderberry we were in the middle of something important when you pulled me away ... for this!!"

"Tell her the truth Crimson!!  She is going to hear about Corals antics before long anyway, as soon as she speaks to Prelude."  Dad says quietly  "She is family, she will understand!"

The twins are just staring at each other wide eyed.

"Fudge!!"  Maize says

"You frigging idiot!!"  Carmine says to Maize.  "I told you!!"

"You told him what Carmine?"  Sunny snaps at him

"I told him it would come back to haunt him one day!!  But neither of us expected THAT!! he points at the baby  "Oh Fudge Maize you TWAT!!! Carmine starts laughing  "Sorry bro, but I am not getting the blame for that!!"

"So is this yours Maize?"  Sunny asks and Maize just stands there saying nothing, I do not think that he can say anything, because he now looks like he is in shock.  I know exactly how it feels to have a baby sprung on you when you did not even know it was coming!

"Dad ... Maize and Coral were at it for months behind Slate and Juni's back.  It was just a dirty sex thing."  Carmine mumbles  "Me and Fern have been telling him to stop but he wouldn't listen!!  He only stopped when he found out about Gravel, when we all did."  Carmine looks at Maize who is just staring at the baby that my Dad is now holding.  "You are so faded when Juni finds this out!!  Mulberry, Prelude ... boy you are a faded man!!  Don't say we did not warn you!!"  Carmine starts to look a little angry then  "And brother when this all blows up in your face, like I told you it would, I'm warning you, if Fern get's into any trouble because she knew and didn't say anything ... then I will be swinging for you too!!"

"YOU IDIOT!!"  Sunny shouts at Maize. "Well this will teach you to keep it your trousers next time and not to go poking it into places that it should not be!!"  Sunny snaps and I can't help but snigger and so does Granite.  "You knew Coral was pregnant, did you NOT think there was a chance it could be yours."

"NO!!"  he chokes.

"Well CONGRATULATIONS!!  IDIOT!!  You got yourself a baby daughter courtesy of Coral only two weeks before you are due to marry her cousin!!"  Sunny snaps at Maize  "Nice wedding present!!  Although I doubt that your wedding will be happening now soft lad, do you, not that you will be in any fit state once Mulberry has finished with you!!  Juniper would be mad to marry you after this!!"  he snaps  "What the hell is wrong with all you kids, are any of you going to do it right?!"  he throws his hands in the air  "Another bloody wedding I have helped fork out for that is not happening!!  You kids must think I have got money and time to waste!!  Another bloody argument caused within the family and more of your mess for me to clean up!!  I am sick of you lot giving me a constant headache with your crap!!"

Sunny shocks me then,  He just goes for Maize and hits him.

Maize doesn't hit back, he flinches as he tries to back away, almost curling himself up into a ball holding his arms up over his head to protect himself.  He looks terrified, like he is waiting and expecting Sunny to start kicking the living shit out of him!!  I am suddenly seeing a side to Sunny that I do not really like.  I know that he has been constantly beating Saffron since he was fourteen for being gay, but the way Maize has just reacted to him, it makes me wander if he has not been beating all of his kids.  I am not sure I even want him around Vanilla anymore after the gay thing and now this!!

Granite lunges for Sunny, as he goes back at Maize, grabbing him and holding him away from Maize before he gets the chance to hit him again.

"Get your filthy hands off me faggot!!"  Sunny rares at Granite.

"And you have the NERVE to call me sick!!  That boys reaction has just said it all!!"  Granite shouts in Sunny's face as he keeps a tight grip on his arms.  "I know you have been kicking the living shit out of Saffron for years!!  Its called abuse mate!!  Don't you DARE ever knock any of us for being gay again you worthless piece of shit!!  It is you who needs locking up!!"

Granite pushes Sunny away from him forcefully with a look of disgust on his face.  Sunny goes flying backwards and ends up on sprawled out on the floor.

Dad is just standing there staring at Sunny in disbelief.  Hitting us as children is something that he has never done, not even me, and I have given him plenty of cause to hit me, especially when I have hit him, he has never once hit back.   The worst I have ever known Dad to do is slap Corals face for calling Crystal a colourless abomination in front of Mom.  I think he is a little shocked by what he has just seen Sunny do.  

Crimson and Carmine grab Sunny and drag him outside, I presume to calm him down.

Maize just hits the floor.  He crumples up and sits in a heap on the floor with his head in his hands. I would lay bets on him crying very soon!!  Crying is one of his specialties, he is very over emotional.

Out of the three of them, Maize had to be the one we would have most wanted it NOT to be because of my cousin, Juniper.  Now we know why Coral would not tell Ice and Dad who Mr Red is.  Ice being Junipers Mother and Coral knows everyone is going to kick off at her because she is family and she crossed a line she should not have done. Coral is a joke, her and Juniper are not only cousins but best mates too!!  After the fuss she kicked up over what Strawberry did to Parsley ... she has got some nerve!!

Ice comes walking up the corridor with a smile on her face.  She hands the paternity test result to Dad then frowns at Maize on the floor.

Dad looks up from the papers and starts to grin at Granite  "She is Slates!!"  he says

"Oh Thank Berry!!"

For a moment I thought Granite was going to collapse into a blubbering wreck just like Maize has turned into, as he crouches down and puts his head in his hands.  I think he has been worrying about that baby not being Slates way more than he has been letting it show.  It takes him a few minutes to compose himself enough to stand up.  

"Is she fit to go Mango?  Can I take her?"  Granite now has a smile on his face.

"Yes, she is all yours Granite!!"  Dad smiles at him  "Tell Slate I am really pleased for him, and no doubt Lilly will be round later to see her ... if the shock of the red baby does not turn her lights out for the rest of the day!!"

"What are you doing on the floor Maize?"  Ice asks

"Meet Mr Red!!"  Dad cringes as he tells Ice.


"No I'm not!!  Sorry Ice!!"  Dad shakes his head

"How the hell am I supposed to tell Juni this?  This is going to destroy her!!  Over my faded body am I going to let you marry my daughter now!!  Just wait until Mulberry finds out about this ... I would start running now if I was you!!"  Ice starts to blow.

I am not sure I want to hang around to see what happens to Maize.  I know for one Mulberry is going to go absolutely ballistic, he is very protective over both of his children!!  I have seen and heard enough trouble for one day, so I run into Corals room after Granite and ask him if I can take the baby up to Slate.  Granite laughed at me and says it is probably better I carry her, he is so excited that he is scared of dropping her.

"Just get lost will you ... I wish everyone would quit bugging me!!  What do I have to do to get some peace around here!!"

Coral starts shouting when she hears me and Granite walk into the room.  She does not even look to see who she is shouting at, for all she knows it could be a doctor or nurse, she remains curled up on the bed with her back to us, the babies and the door..

"You always have to be the drama queen don't you!!!  Well don't flatter yourself we are not here to see you!!  If I never see you again it will be too soon and I think you will be getting plenty of peace after this one, because nobody will be talking to you for a very long time!!"  I snap at Coral angrily  "Congratulations by the way, world war three is probably about to erupt now, out there and in the family and you have caused it AGAIN!!"  she rolls over then to stares at me and frowns  "Maize is out there, he has owned up to being Mr Red and Ice knows so I doubt it will be too long before Mulberry and Prelude turn up!!"  I snap at her  "After the hell you gave Straw for what she did to Parsley, you have got a damn nerve!!  Dad is right whore is the word!!"

"Get lost Tap, like you are Mr perfect suddenly!!"  she snaps at me as she watches me pick up the brown baby and turn to walk out of the room with her 

"The test has come back by the way, she is Slates. We are taking her up to her Dad, because you just signed her away remember!!"  I snap at her  "Mind you, she is the lucky one, she gets to escape you!!  Don't ever speak to me again!!"

When we walk out of the room with the baby Coral does not make a sound, there is no protest and she does not try to stop me.  There is all sorts of yelling going on in the corridor, Ice is ripping shreds out of Maize who is now back on his feet but probably wishing he was back on the floor judging by the look on his face.  Mulberry and Ruby are coming down the corridor in a hurry together, neither of them look too happy, and I am glad that I am getting out of here.  Mulberry is going to explode!!

Dad is just stood back away from all the commotion feeding the red baby, who's arrival has caused all this commotion.

I feel bad in a way for what I have just done to Coral, but in a way she deserves it after everything she has done.  She doesn't want the baby's anyway, so she says, and she signed the baby over to Slate months ago quite willingly, even after she was begged not to, she let Mom break her heart over it!!  It is not like she is never going to see the baby again either.  Slate has told Mom and Dad that as long as Coral does not cause trouble and is reasonable and civil, then she can see the baby, even have her at weekends, he does not want her to grow up completely without a mother like he had too.  Although I get a feeling she might not even bother with Slates baby, I don't think she has even held her yet.

Granite just walks down the corridor with a huge grin on his face, I can see that he is happy.  I laugh at him.

"Man that Sunny is a nasty piece of work!!"  he laughs at me  "It is just a VERY good job the baby turned out to be Slate's, or I might just have taken my disappointment out on his face!!"

"So how does it feel Granddad!!"  I smile at him  "I guess this makes us family now seeing as I am her Uncle."

"Yes I guess it does!!"  he smiles at me  "I am not sure I can still get my head around it all!!"  he laughs  "This time last year, if you had told me I would be a Dad and a Granddad, I would have bet everything that I own on you being wrong!!  I would now be very broke!!"  he laughs  "Hell this is so far removed from me and Mace rattling around alone in our house in Cherry Hill thinking neither of us had any family to speak of!!"  he rolls his eyes  "Mace being my brother in law, my Dad still being alive, four brothers and a sister I didn't even know existed, Neices and nephews all over the place, a Son and now a Grandchild!!  It is pretty mental!!"

"So when are you taking Clay to see Gravel?"

"After his trial."  he smiles at me "Unfortunately I am going to have to sit and look at his ugly mug during the trial, however long that takes, but once he is sentenced then, like I have already told you, one visit and that is his lot!!  I am just very glad I only have one of his offspring to show him!!"

When we reach the door to my Dads office, Granite tells me to stand to one side and hide as he smirks at me.  I know straight away he is going to play Slate up.  He winks at me before he opens the door and walks in leaving the door wide open. I stand outside the door in the corridor up against the wall, amused as straight away I hear chair legs scraping frantically.  I imagine Slate has just jumped up out of his chair.

"Well?  Tell me?"  Slate almost shouts and Granite remains quiet  "DAD!!  DON'T mess about PLEASE is she or isn't she?"

"I don't know ......" I hear Granite mumbling 

"DAD!!"  Slate snaps  "That test has got to be back by now!!  JUST TELL ME!!"

"Tap, what did that bit of paper say again?"  he shouts through the door

"I don't know I can not read remember!!"  I say as I walk in grinning at him. 

"FUDGE!!"  Slate just stands there with his mouth open as he stares at the baby in my arms.  He suddenly starts to grin.  "She is isn't she!!"

"Yep!!  She certainly is Dad!!"  Granite starts laughing  "So what are you going to call her?"

Granite asks as he hands him the paper but he does not even look at it, he passes it straight to Bay.  All he is interested in is getting his hands on the baby.

"I think you know Grandad!!" he smirks at Granite

"I don't know, so what are you going to call my Niece?"  I ask as he takes the baby off me.

"Amber of course!!"

Slates reaction to his daughter is so far removed from Corals, it suddenly strikes me.  I was far from happy, just like the rest of our family, when she signed those papers to hand sole custody and parental responsibility of the baby over to Slate.

Now I can see, for Amber at least, it was the best thing!!