Dill grew up to be a handsome young man. He was into music like his father and I, so we bought him a bass for his birthday. I’ve never seen him so excited in his life, it warmed my heart. We also converted the basement into bedrooms for him and Missy, and they absolutely loved their rooms. Missy didn’t stop talking about it for a whole week! Their reactions made me ecstatic, I had been working on this in secret for months while they slept in the living room. Jeremy told me I didn’t have to do this for them, but I promised him I wanted too. Every child should have a bedroom. Even though he was a teen now, Dill and Mistletoe were still the closest siblings I’ve ever seen. He would always play whatever game she wanted to play after school, even if it meant he had to stay up late working on homework. I couldn’t help but be reminded of Basil when I saw them. This experiment has been going on for 13 years now, (I know it doesn’t seem like it, Fairies age extremely slowly,) and I still thought about my family every day. Speaking of families, Chrissy and Hero were starting their own! When I heard the news, I was thrilled. The baby would only be a few years younger than River, so they could be best friends, just like us. Hero was such an attentive husband during her pregnancy. He got her anything she needed, whenever she needed it. If she was craving a Hogan’s burrito at three am, he climbed out of bed and got her one. He gave her a massage whenever she asked, and he was always talking to her baby bump. It was utterly adorable.
*A few months later*
Chrissy’s due date was three weeks away, but she was huge! Not that I’d say that out loud, she was terribly sensitive due to hormones. Once when Jeremy said he liked her hair, she cried for twenty minutes. Was I this moody with River? I don’t think so…
But anyway, today we were celebrating Missy’s teen birthday and River’s child birthday. It was hard to believe my little man was getting so big. I wanted him to stay little forever, but I knew that wasn’t possible.
“It’s your birthday today, Bud.” I laughed as I sat on the floor with my angry son, who couldn’t figure out the block box.
“Was dat mommy?” He dropped the block and looked up at me.
“You’re getting older buddy. You can go to school soon!” I clapped, trying to make school sound fun.
“Was skoo mama?”
“Well, a bunch of kids your age go to this big building and learn a bunch of cool things! And you get to make friends. Yay!” I cheered, and he joined in.
“Yay mama!” I laughed and he got back to his block box. God, now what am I going to do during the day?
Both kids blew out their candles at the same time. Missy was excited to become a teen, prom was coming up and she really wanted to go.
When the sparkles cleared, Missy was taller, and even more gorgeous than before. I didn’t even get a glimpse of River, because he took off running inside. I called after him, but all he said was ‘video games’. Ugh, boys.
Chrissy went inside, she said she wasn’t feeling well and didn’t want any cake. Hero took his inside, so it was only us. I got up to get a glass of milk, and looked over at my family sitting at the table. Sure, we weren’t an official family, but the kids called me Mom and I thought of them as my own. We were family in our hearts, where it mattered.
Oh god, I’m getting all mushy. I swear I wasn’t always like this, I think it’s because I’m getting older. But I try not to think about that much.
“How are you better at this than I am?” Jeremy whined as all the boys played video games.
“Natural talent, I guess.” River stated, never taking his eyes off the screen. Dill laughed and Jeremy huffed. He was always the winner whenever he played with Dill or Hero, and wasn’t used to losing. “Sorry Dad, I must get it from you.”
I haven’t told River about his real father yet, I’ll tell him when he’s older. He doesn’t know that Dill and Missy aren’t his siblings, but they all treat each other as such. They’ll find out eventually, it just wasn’t the time yet.
We completely re-did River’s room. We even expanded it a few feet, it was a little tight before. He screamed when he entered his room that night, and headed straight for the bed.
He climbed the latter and shouted “Mom, Dad, look how cool this bed is! It’s so high!” He squealed.
“Glad you like it, Bud. It’s bedtime though, so goodnight.” Jeremy blew him a kiss, and he blew us both one back.
“We love you River.” I said quietly. I dont think he heard me though, because he was already passed out.
My little baby wasn’t so little anymore.
I was worried about Chrissy. She’s been really dizzy lately, and she’s been getting a lot of headaches. Her speech was a little slurred at times too, but she assured me she was fine. I didn’t exactly believe her, but she’s a nurse so I guess I should. But still, I worried.
“Chrissy, where are you love?” I called out for her. I hadn’t seen her since cake. I climbed the stairs, but she wasn’t in either bedroom. I went back downstairs, maybe she was on the couch, and I just didn’t see her. But she wasn’t, so I check the last room in the house. The downstairs bathroom.
Panic rose in my throat when I entered the bathroom. Chrissy was sprawled on the ground, her face the palest I’ve ever seen it.
“Chrissy, Chrissy, are you ok?” I shouted as I approached her. She didn’t respond. No no no no no. I thought to myself. This can’t be happening.
“Chrissy baby, please wake up. This isn’t funny.” I took her into my arms. She was barely breathing, but she wasn’t responding.
From there on it got a bit blurry. I must’ve called 911, because an ambulance was there a few minutes later.
The next thing I knew I was chasing paramedics into the hospital. It didn’t feel real. My mind was clouded and I felt like I was running in quicksand. She’s going to be okay, and so is the baby. I told myself, but not really believing it.
And I shouldn’t have.
I buried my face into Jeremy’s shoulder. I sobbed loudly, tears pouring out of my eyes and onto his shirt.
“T-this can’t be real.” I choked.
Chrissy died last night. She had a blood clot in her brain, and no one knew. It was too late, she was almost gone by the time they got her to the hospital. They were able to save the baby, a tiny baby girl who Hero named Clover, because she was lucky to be alive.
It hurt. So, so bad. Chrissy was my rock. She was the person who helped me through the dark times, who made me laugh when all I wanted to do was cry. She was my fashion consultant, my song tester, my hug machine, and my soul sister. Chrissy was the first person I met here, and she was the closest thing I had to a sister.
Clover would never know her mother. She wouldn’t hear her first words, or see her first steps. She wouldn’t hug her on her first day of school. She wouldn’t help her get ready for prom, or help her through her first heartbreak. She wouldn’t see her get married.
Hero didn’t have his soulmate anymore. They wouldn’t have any more kids. They wouldn’t even celebrate their first wedding anniversary. They wouldn’t grow old together, and they wouldn’t play with their grandchildren together. It sucked.
I already missed her laugh, her jokes, and her tips. I missed her crazy stories from the emergency room. I even missed her mood swings.
I need my best friend. It can’t end like this. It just can’t.
The last thing any of us wanted to do was attend a funeral. We had a small, private funeral, just the seven of us.
I’ve never seen Jeremy cry before. He’s always been a strong man, usually keeping his emotions private. But now, he was openly bawling at the grave site. Mistletoe was always very happy, but her face was drenched with tears. She looked up to Chrissy a lot, she thought of her like an older sister or a cool aunt. Missy was absolutely devastated when Hero came over in tears this morning.
Dill was so much like his father, he never showed much emotion. But while Jeremy was always happy and talking, Dill was always quiet. But he too was crying, something I only saw him do once, when he was a child and he scraped his knee while playing basketball with Hero in the backyard.
Hero held Clover tightly against his chest. He wasn’t crying. He was just staring. I was really worried about him. He hasn’t said a word since this morning. He’s just been holding Clover against him, never letting her leave his sight.
River was crying too, but I don’t think he really understood what was going on. He knew something sad had happened, but he didn’t understand what.
“Misty, what’s going on? Why is everyone so sad?” River asked Missy, calling her by the nickname only he was allowed to use.
“Chrissy passed away last night, Bud.” She spoke softly.
“What does that mean? Where is she?” River was going through a questioning phase, he was asking questions about everything.
“It means she’s in heaven now.”
“When will she be back? I miss her.” River asked innocently. Hearing him say that broke my heart even more, if it were possible. Missy shot me a nervous glance, and a nodded slightly. He was gonna learn about death somehow, and unfortunately he had to learn about it so young.
“She’s not coming back, sweety. Once you go to heaven, you stay there forever.” She explained softly.
“Why did she go there then, if she can’t come back? It’s not fair. I miss her.” He choked back a sob, and his sister pulled him into a hug.
“If she could, she’d be here with us, but she can’t. It’s not fair, I know Bud. But we’re all here for you, ok?” He nodded and sniffled.
“I think we should wrap it up, Clover is getting fussy.” Hero whispered hoarsely from next to me. Everyone nodded, and started to head out.
“How about we go to the pool, how does that sound?” Missy asked River. Missy was a blessing, I was so glad I didn’t have to explain that and that I didn’t have to distract him. I was too caught up in my own grief.
“Prim, we’re leaving now.” Jeremy whispered softly from beside me.
“I’m staying. Can you come back for me in an hour?”
“Chrissy, why? Why did this happen?” I sobbed after everyone was gone. “I need you. Hero needs you. Clover needs you. We all need you. Please come back” I knew my begging was useless, there was no reversing death. Not without black magic.
“I can’t believe you’re gone. It feels like just yesterday we moved in together. It feels like you just asked me if my boss was hot. Look where that got me, a broken heart but a beautiful son. I never thanked you for that. So I guess I’m doing that now. Thank you so much Chrissy. You gave me so much, I owe my entire life to you. Your’s was just starting out. I’m so sorry Chrissy. This shouldn’t have happened.” I sobbed. My hands dug into the grass, I was clinging to the earth as if I were going to fall off.
“I can’t live without you Chrissy. Who’s gonna cheer me up when I get sad about Vance? Who’s gonna remind me that he was a horrible man, who doesn’t deserve to be in his child’s life? We never even got to have a baby play-date. I never got to return the babysitting favor for you. I love you Chrissy, you’re the sister I never had.”
I curled up on the grass, not caring about getting the dress dirty. “I’ll take care of you’re family Chrissy, I promise.” By now I was crying so hard my eyelashes were gluing together from the mascara.
“Prim, Prim baby it’s time to go.” A voice pleaded behind my closed lids. I must’ve fallen asleep at the cemetery.
“I don’t want to leave her.” My voice was dry and hoarse and didn’t sound like me at all.
“I know babe, but Hero needs our help right now.” He persuaded.
“Primrose, I know it hurts, but I promise you we can get through this, together.” Jeremy soothed after he finally pulled me off the ground.
“I can’t live without her.” I sobbed once again.
“It may seem like that, but you can get through this. I believe in you babe.”
“I don’t know.” That was all I could choke out. Even though it was summer, I was shivering as if I were in a snowstorm. Jeremy wrapped his arm around me and slowly guided me out of the cemetery, leaving my Chrissy behind.
All I could think about was Chrissy. My mind clung to the memories of her, they were all I had left and I desperately wanted to remember them. My mind was clouded, probably from the sleeping pills Jeremy gave me, but I fought through the cloud. I needed to remember every last detail of my best friend. Her smile. The way she laughed whenever I made a snarky comment. The way she never really knew what to do with her hair when it was down. How much she hated her name, even though it was such a gorgeous one. It was little things like that that I wanted to remember forever.