This time I got to see myself making faces and I realized that yes, giving birth makes me look funny. Too bad I couldn’t laugh through the pain.
I rode to the hospital on my new flying vaccuum so I wouldn’t have to wait for a taxi. I actually felt rather safe on it. Good thing my pain threshold is high or I would have fallen off halfway there.
Back home, I carried Selena to a crib.
Then Nikial came with me.
And finally Richelle joined her older brother and sister. Looking down at them, I knew I would do my best to raise them right. They would turn out like me, not like their murderous father. I had already raised Chris, who was a werewolf. Polar’s children would not turn out to be monsters just because they were half-wolf. At most, they would destroy furniture whenever they were in a bad mood.
That was what I told myself.
I received a phone call from Holly. “I heard what happened with Polar Cubb. I’m so sorry, Gran. Can I come over?”
“Sure,” I said, smiling because I would see my granddaughter. I would never tell anyone, but Holly was my favorite grandchild.
Then I felt guilty for smiling, remembering what had happened to the zombies. How could I ever feel happy after seeing that sort of horror? Was I as wicked as Polar because I could not stay sad?
“Hi, Holly,” said Ricky. “Are you here to do magic?”
“Actually, no,” said Holly. “I’m just here to help your mom do magic, and to make her feel better.”
“What kinda magic? Are you gonna make her forget what happened? I think she’d like that.”
“I’m sorry, but I can’t do that. My magic is with genetic manipulation. I can’t erase memories. And even if I could, I don’t think I would. Memories are what make us who we are. The good, the bad, and the ugly.”
“I don’t get it.”
“Maybe you will when you’re older.” She ruffled his hair.
“Hi,” she said when I came out to them, and she hugged me as Ricky ran off. “I really am sorry about what happened. Are you all right?”
“That’s the bad thing. If I don’t think about it, I’m fine. It’s only when I think about it that I’m not.”
“Why is that bad?”
“I don’t know. Shouldn’t I be more upset?”
“Everyone deals with grief in their own way. Maybe you’re just in shock.”
“Yeah, maybe. So, um, why did you come over? Not that I have a problem with it…”
“Oh, yeah. I came across this spell in my spellbook and I thought it might cheer you up a bit.”
“What is it?”
“Come on, I’ll show you in your spellbook.”
“Seems like there’s a lot of dust on the magic supplies,” she said as I looked over the spell. “Don’t you use this stuff? I left it all here just so you could.”
“I’m not a witch,” I said. “How’m I even supposed to do a spell? I don’t see the point in having witch’s gear when I can’t use any of it.”
“Your aura works the same as a spell,” said Holly. “You get the benefit of not needing a big pointy stick or to memorize words. All you have to do is know what you want and do what I taught you with your aura. And you can so use this stuff. Alchemy can be taught to anybody, not just a witch.”
“So I can turn stone into gold?”
“Maybe, if you ever find a potion for it,” said Holly. “Anyways, what would you need gold for? Aren’t you super-rich from Grandpa’s band?”
“No, I’m super-rich because of investments. For the last time, you don’t have a grandpa!”
“Are you sure I can do this?” I asked.
“Positive. It was indexed under, ‘Magic Anybody Can Do.’ Trust me, you can.”
I focused on my aura and thought about what I wanted.
“See, I told you so!” said Holly.
I smiled too. It was nice to know I wasn’t a total failure at being a fairy.
I held up the key I’d summoned and waved it. The door of the chest I’d summoned with it opened.
Bonehilda picked up Nikial and changed his diaper. He giggled at her.
“I just hope she doesn’t scare the kids,” I said.
“I doubt she will. They’re not screaming, are they?” said Holly.
In the morning, I aged the triplets up. Looking at them, I wondered briefly if any of the three share their father’s spirit deep within them. But if they do, does it really matter? As long as I raise them to be good, they will be fine. Children are not their parents. I know that as well as anyone.