Everly had been put on bed rest. She had made it to 30 weeks pregnant, and Doc said at the moment, there was a chance she wouldn’t carry the pregnancy to term. He also told us at her last appointment that she would need to have a c-section. But with everything going on, we hadn’t even started setting up the nursery.
Everly wanted to come, but she could barely walk a few meters without having to pee, and her feet were swollen. However, she didn’t trust my vanilla taste, as she called it, so Valarian and I stopped by the hotel on the way to the baby store to pick up Macey and Zoe, who were coming to help pick out the baby stuff.
She insisted he go to spend some time with me after we learned he had received detention, twice for hitting two boys at school and had been playing up. We spoke to him about it, and he said the boy deserved it. He refused to tell us what it was about, despite us trying to talk to him about it.
Though I was glad they were coming because I knew Valarian would have a meltdown when he learned the genders. We didn’t have the heart to tell him when we got home after the ultrasound. When we picked him up from school that day, he held balloons he painted blue. So today would be his revelation that he was getting three sisters instead of brothers. I nervously chewed my nail as I waited for Zoe and Macey to come out.
Zoe was first out of the hotel, skipping excitedly over when I see Macey come out the side doors of the restaurant, and Zoe spots her. For a second, they stand there staring at each other. My brows furrow at why when they both start racing toward the car, shoving and pushing each other. “Shotgun!” Macey screams.
“I called it first!”‘ Zoe snarls, shoving her only to be ripped back as she reaches for the door handle. Macey sticks her tongue out at her when Zoe falls on her b#tt. She hops in the car, and I raise an eyebrow at her, and Zoe huffs and climbs in the back with Valarian.
“You two are idiots. I can’t believe you just fought over the front seat like damn children,”‘ I tell them, shaking my head while they place their seatbelts on.
“I shotgun the front on the way home!”
“If you can get to it first, small fry,” Macey taunts.
“Enough. Zoe gets the front on the way back. Stop your bickering, or both of you will sit in the back,” I tell them. Geez, they were like Everly annoying little sisters. Gosh, I need to keep my daughters away from these two crazies, I thought to myself.
“Well, looks like I will be claiming that foot rub today,” Macey says.
“Macey gets the front seat on the way back,” I quickly declare. No way was I rubbing her feet.
“Ew! Dad won’t rub your feet,” Valarian says. Macey snickers.
“Your father has too. He lost a bet,” Macey tells him.
“What sort of bet?” Valerian asks, Zoe answers.
“Oh, you will see soon,”‘ Zoe says, messing his hair.
“Are you excited about going baby shopping?” she asks him.
“Yep! I want to find the babies’ dinosaur plushies!”
“And other plushies remember. And we are mainly going to find cots,” I tell him.
“What girl…” Macey starts to say. “Shh!” I hiss at her, not wanting Valarian to have a meltdown in the car.
“Huh?” Valarian asks.
“Nothing. I was saying dinosaurs’ plushies sound great. Taylor used to love dinosaurs,”
“She still does, but only T-Rex’s. She likes their little arms,” Valarian says.
When we reached the store, I couldn’t believe how petrified I was of entering, knowing my son would find out the genders today. Alphas fear nothing, yet here I was scared to tell my own child I wrestled in a girl way because my pe*ker decided it was throwing girls’ this time around.
Valarian wanders around the store finding stuff with Zoe and looking at cot blankets, while I found the cots Everly showed me on the store’s website. They were white, and I checked to see if they had them in stock and they did, and for half price too. Once I had them set aside, I wandered around the aisles looking at baby clothes and blankets and picked up some pink stuff when Zoe and Valarian came over with some dinosaur plushies.
“Can I pick a mobile?” Valarian asks before his eyes go to the pink onesie in my hands. Macey wandered around the store with a trolley that had a blue blanket over it.
“One is a girl?” Valarian asked, and I chewed my l!p, about to put it back, when Zoe leaned down beside him.
“Girls aren’t so bad. You like Taylor and Casey,” Zoe tells him, and Valarian nods, looking at me.
“I found the bottle sterilizer she was looking at, and the br***t pump. Oh, and I found the breastfeeding pillow,” Macey says, showing us.
“I got blue plushies,” Valerian says happily.
“Aw, that’s great. They will love them,”
“Yeah, but now I need to find a pink one,” Valarian says.
“Why? Girls like blue,” Macey says, batting her lashes at him. She points to her eyes.
“See blue eye shadow,” she says.
“Hmm, I guess you’re right,” Valarian says. We buy a few more things, and the rest we would order. He seemed to be taking the news of one girl alright, but I knew we had to tell him there wouldn’t be a brother. He picked out some colorful mobiles for their cribs, and the girls wanted to see Everly, so we headed home afterward. The store was delivering the cribs tomorrow and the rest of the furniture. However, getting home, Valarian was questioning names. We had picked no names yet, though I had a couple in mind, and so did Everly. Yet deciding names, I found hard because the kid had to live with whatever we chose. The stress it was causing me was shocking.
We showed Everly the few things we had with us, and Macey and Everly started pulling out the sterilizer and bottles, wanting to try them out. Valarian watched with eager eyes, drinking it all in. He talked of wanting to help with bottles, and Everly explained she was going to try breastfeeding, but he could help when she expressed milk which launched us into a conversation about how she had milk. And I think the boy will need counseling after that conversation. He seemed to think she was going to grow teats like a c*w.
“So are you going to pick the girl’s name and dad pick the boy’s names?” he asks while testing the bottle brush viciously. Everly looks at me. “You didn’t tell him?” she mouths. I smile at her awkwardly and hold my hands out apologetically.
“Well, you know how your father has to rub Aunty Macey’s feet because she won the bet?” Valarian shudders, then laughs.
“That is so gross,”
“Hey! My feet aren’t gross,” Macey tells him.
I shudder at the thought. “Yep. Dad wouldn’t tell me what the bet was, though, ” Valarian pouts.
“Well, Aunty Macey bet that the babies would be three girls,” Everly tells him, and his brows furrow. He looks at me, and I swear I felt the blood drain from my face.
“You said you would wrestle in boy way!” he growls, stunning me. Astonished by the sound, I stare at Everly, who seems startled by it.
“Now they won’t like my plushies!” he sobs, placing the bottle down and burying his face in his arms as he leans on the counter. Everly brushes her fingers through his hair and glares at me.
“Now we have to take them back, all because you wrestled in mum’s b#tt!” Valarian cries, and Macey snorts and chokes at his words while Everly gaped at him and Zoe snickered.
“It’s not funny! I told dad to wrestle in a boy way. And he got it wrong,” Valarian pouts. He snatches the plushies off the counter, putting them back in the bag.
“Valarian, there is no way to wrestle in a boy or girl way,” Everly tells him.
“Yeah! Casey said she came out her mum’s b#tt, but I came out your hoo-ha. And dad promised!”
“Vag**a,” Everly corrects and laughs, and Zoe’s face heats.
“Babies don’t come out of the b#tt,”
“But Casey said,”
“Casey came out of my vag**a Valarian. Not my b#tt,”
“And Taylor came out of my belly. They cut me open, but she is still a girl,” Macey tells him, and he seems confused.
“Girls aren’t so bad,” Zoe tells him.
“I know, but now I will have to fight all the boys to protect them,” he says, glaring at the plushies in his hands.
“Huh?” Everly says.
“As I do for Taylor and Casey. The boys pick on them. I had to punch Blake in the nose the other day. He tugged on Casey’s hair and made her cry and called Taylor a rogue wh0*e,” he says.
“So that is why you got detention at school the other day?” I asked him.
“He called Taylor that?” Macey asked, and Valarian nodded his head.
“Did you tell the teacher?” Zoe asked, yet Macey’s eyes watered, knowing the title bestowed on her was now on her daughter. I despised that name. It sickened me, and to know children of my own pack were referring to other children by it angered me.
“No. I punched him on his big nose,”
“You shouldn’t have hit him, but told me. I will speak with Blake’s father. Violence isn’t the answer,” I tell him.
“I don’t want them to call my sister’s names,” he says.
“They won’t. Besides, they will be tough like your momma. And they will have you to protect them,” Zoe tells him. Valarian nods.
“So, do I still have to apologize to Blake?” Valarian asks. In my eyes, no, but the principal asked for an apology when he returned from his two-day suspension.
“You still need to apologize for hitting him, but I will be making sure Blake also has to apologize,” I tell him looking at Macey. She folds her arms across her chest and nods once, clearly not happy that her daughter is being picked on.
“I’ll handle it,” I tell her, and she nods. Yet the look on her face was like she wanted to go deliver the boy the spanking his mother never gave him.
The girls stayed for coffee and cake that Zoe made me stop for at the bakery on the way home, and I drove them back to the hotel so they could get the girls from the school in an hour. Around three-thirty, Everly’s phone rang as she reached for it on the coffee table where Valarian was drawing.
“It’s Aunty Macey,” Valarian says, passing the phone to her. She quickly answers it when I felt the mind link open up.
Marcus’s voice frantically echoed in my head.
“Have you seen Ava and Zoe?” he asks.
“Not since I dropped Zoe back at the hotel. What’s up?”
“Ava and Zoe went to pick up a few things from the hardware and were supposed to pick Casey and Taylor up. Yet the school rang me, and I am on my way there now to get them.”
“With Tatum. He had a physio this afternoon. She is meeting me at the school,” Marcus says.
“Have you tried mind-linking her?”
“Of course! But the bond is blocked. I can’t feel her, Valen!” he says frantically, and I could hear the fear in his voice.
“What? Where are you?” I asked, confused. Everly stands up and is talking frantically, and she moves to the house phone. “Yeah, I am trying her mobile now,” I hear her say as she dials a number into the house phone.
“Driving to get Casey, I… I feel off, and I can’t feel her. Why is she blocking me out?”
“Hang on, Everly is ringing someone,”
“I’m trying Ava’s phone,” she says. I listen to it ring out.
“I’ll try my father,” I hear her say as she starts dialing more numbers with shaking hands. I make my way over to her when Marcus suddenly screams through the mind link before it cuts off. My heart raced at the agony in his voice, and I instantly tried to reopen it, but I got nothing but howling through the link and knew he had shifted.