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Milestones

 
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Ed
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Old Wyrm
Old Wyrm


Joined: 20 May 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2018 2:57 pm    Post subject: Milestones Reply with quote

7-14-18 // Rhydin City & Outskirts

It was a sweltering hot Saturday in July and the Dean children wanted to go swimming. There was no central air conditioning at Old Temple West. The window units they had installed in the upper level apartments did not much help. Cindy, Ginger, Wade, Mable, Warren, and Polly were all sprawled out across the cool concrete floor of the basement level apartment. Pert was in attendance, watching over them, sitting cross-legged under the payphone bolted to the cinder block wall. The children were so desperate for a swimming hole that they were discussing even jumping in the river.

"I have a better idea," murmured Pert. Four little heads lifted to peer at her expectantly. The other two were sleeping, having decided that it was too hot to even bother being awake. Pert smiled at them softly.

"Nellie," she asked, looking over at the mother of most of them. She was lounging on the corner end of the sectional, fanning herself with a handmade paper fan. She looked up with raised brows. "Would it be all right if I took the children to the Greene farm for the day?"

Before their mother could even answer, Wade leaped from the floor with an ecstatic shout. "Yeah! Let's go to the farm!"

"I wouldn't mind seeing Mr. Goshen's horse again," Ginger said, shyly, softly.

Cindy sat up. "Please, Mom? Swimming in the pond is better than the river."

"Sure, I don't mind," said Mrs. Dean. "But you better make sure it's all right with the Greenes first."

"I'm certain Mrs. Greene won't mind at all," said Pert, smiling gently. After all, she knew the woman had asked her to bring them back, and often. However, she did reach up to take the receiver off its dock and dialed Ed's number to call him just in case.

Within twenty minutes, Ed showed up with his decades old restored pickup. Most of the children piled into the back, but Pert sat up front with the babies. Once everyone was secure, they were off!

---

None of the children had actual swimwear, which was not a problem as far as Ed could determine. When he was growing up, children swam in the river, in their underwear or nothing at all. Especially on hot summer days like this one.

When they got there, he and Goshen spread out a large quilt on the lawn to set Polly and Warren with a handful of toys. Mrs. Greene happily entertained Mable, splashing her with water from a bucket; the pond was a little too deep and dangerous for her. Wade gleefully cannonballed off the dock in his skivvies, over and over again. Warren toddled after the ducks, fearlessly. Cindy and Ginger wore big shirts and dangled their feet in the water, giggling and splashing Wade as he tried to pull them under by their ankles.

There was a point when Wade took a break from swimming to sit in the mud along the shore. He spent his time building mud castles, until he stumbled upon an empty turtle shell. "Hey! Check this out!" he cried, jumping up from the ground. Covered in filth, he ran across the yard and plopped down in the grass next to the blanket. Polly shrieked in delight and reached toward him, bouncing on her bottom where she sat. Wade grinned and handed it over.

Ed snatched it out of the boy's hands before Polly could get to it, though, causing her to cry. "Hey, this is pretty cool." But it was slimy and gross and before allowing the baby to play with it, inevitably stick it in her mouth, Ed got up and took it over to the pond to wash it somewhat clean. Pat drying it with his shirt, he wandered back to hand it over to her. She immediately ceased wailing and burbled happily. As predicted, she brought it right to her mouth for a taste.

Everyone smiled dotingly at her for a good long minute, except Wade who had run off to dig around in the mud for more possible treasures. And except for baby Warren who just didn't notice other babies. All he saw was a neat new toy. He gave up on chasing the ducks and toddled to the blanket, where he snatched the shell right out of Polly's hands. He turned and waddled away. Once again, Polly shrieked, but this time in outrage.

"Mmmmyyyyyyyyy!" the baby yelled.

Everyone, this time Wade included, turned to stare, agape. Polly planted her little hands down on the blanket, pushed her butt up in the air, got her feet under her, and stood. She wobbled for a moment. Everyone held their breath. Then, suddenly, she tore off across the yard in pursuit of the turtle shell thief named Warren.

"Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!" Polly's screaming was a battle cry. Her arms were outstretched, reaching for Warren, and the turtle shell he still clutched in his grubby little hands. He shrieked and giggled, picking up speed. The chase was on!

"Oh. My. Gosh," said Ed, breaking the silence of the group. "Are you guys seeing this? She's walking!" He bounced on his feet and whirled toward Goshen. "She's walking, Goshen! Look!" His boyfriend smiled like an angel and nodded, his gaze still fixed on the enraged newly formed toddler chasing after the boy.

"These are her first steps?" asked Mrs. Greene.

"Yes!" said Ed.

"Go, Polly!" cheered Cindy and Ginger from the dock. "Get him!"

They all watched the show until the little ones circled around Goshen and Ed, who promptly snatched the turtle shell out of Warren's hands. The baby boy gargled a shout of outrage of his own. Goshen scooped up baby Polly. Her legs were still pumping and she pushed against him, leaning toward Ed who immediately handed her the turtle shell.

"Polly," Ed cooed lovingly. "You're walking!" He squished her cheeks and pressed his forehead to hers with an eskimo kiss, nose to nose.

"My," said Polly before sticking the edge of the shell in her mouth again.

"Was that a word?" Ed asked, leaning back. He looked at Mrs. Greene, because surely she'd know. Margot was smiling at him but shook her head uncertainly, with a shrug. "It sounded like a word. I'm calling it. Her first word and first steps all in one day. That's so awesome." He looked back at Polly, took her little foot in a grip between his fingers, and shook it, smiling like an idiot the whole time.

Polly drooled and made zerbert noises against the turtle shell, content to be held by Goshen, who was just as content to continue holding her.
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