“Morning…” Josh and his girlfriend Emmi appeared in the kitchen, Josh yawning and Emmi smiling politely as she did.
“Morning kids, go sit, pancakes are ready!” Everett chimed upbeat.
It was Saturday.
A whole weekend off, for everybody, after a long and taxing work week.
Breakfast was just like many of the ones before, and like many of the dinners they shared together.
Emerson has practically been unofficially living with the Camerons ever since she and Josh returned from running away, more so of late, since her sister finally married John, the father of her son Ryder.
Unfortunately, while it seemed to satisfy Christine’s sense of order, not all couples were meant to be, tensions were undeniable, and Emmi often got caught in the middle.
She had always been the quiet and sensitive type, after the traumatic experiences of their time as runaways her mental state was fragile and she shied away from conflict. While the situation at her home wasn’t that bad or unusual, it was poison for her.
Even before they had run away together she had always heavily leaned on Josh, and even more so after their terrible experiences on the street, but now she was his shadow. Oddly, and unlike most young men, Josh didn’t seem to mind it at all. He was a quiet, academic type, but make no mistake, if he had something to say he would let anybody know, if need be, when words weren’t enough, he wouldn’t hesitate to become physical. He was well respected through high school, and college would not be any different.
Both had just turned 18.
Now they had weeks till he would leave for college and everybody was secretly wondering, how being separated for longer periods at a time would work out for those two. Emmi did not seem even half as excited about attending fashion school as Josh was to go to college. Katie had once asked her about it, since Emmi did not seem to care much about fashion and learned that it had once been her sister’s dream, which ended before it began when she got pregnant. Now she wanted to live vicariously through Emmi, who quietly obliged.
Josh on the other hand wanted to work with his father in his company sooner rather than later.
Just like his sister before him he had been helping out and learning bits and pieces for years and currently went to work with him frequently to assist with simpler tasks for ongoing projects.
He was excited about college and couldn’t wait to get started on his dream.
After breakfast, Emmi helped with the dishes as she always did, when she suddenly slammed down the plate and dish towel and ran. When she came back she was pale. She had done that a few times since dinner.
“How far along are you?” Katie asked plainly.
Emmi only stared at her, white as a sheet.
“Emmi, I know the signs. Have you taken a test yet?”
“Does Josh know?”
Emerson shook her head.
“When are you going to tell him?”
“He’s going to kill me. He’ll hate me …” Emmi looked scared.
“Oh sweet girl, Josh could never hate you! My son loves you, we all do, and like his father, he is not one who easily falls in or out of love as you well know, he wants kids, maybe not necessarily now, but many in this family have gone through surprises that. We even have a term for it: the Cameron curse. Rett will be shocked, then thrilled, I can tell you that already. He wants the Cameron name to continue. Look, it’s best not to keep secrets. You go and tell Josh, now, and I’ll tell my husband. And then we all meet in the living room and talk about how we want to do this. We’ll figure it out. And – don’t cry, sweet girl. Worse storms have been weathered, this is only a hiccup in the plans, but a happy one. Please don’t worry.” Katie’s voice was soft and gentle.
Less than an hour later they all sat in the living room. The facial expressions of all ranged between excitement, worry and shock but the final consensus was a positive one.
It was decided that there was going to be a wedding, a simple one, before Josh would leave for college. Emmi would move in with Josh’s parents for the interim, as she did not want to be exposed to the uncomfortable atmosphere at home. Since Josh went to school locally, he would come home as often as feasible. The San Myshuno university campus was a few hours by car from Brindleton Bay, quite a commute, but doable if need be.
Emmi feared telling her sister the news so much, that the Camerons invited her over for dinner instead.
Turned out that Emmi’s fears were founded. There was a fight, a bad one, and Emmi ended up moving in that night. She didn’t seem distressed by it for long, as she much preferred her new home.
The next day, Sunday, Josh said he had some errands to run, when he came back he took Emmi out to lunch.
Before he did though, they stopped by Cameron Park where he proposed.
A visit to the gyn confirmed that Emerson and Josh were expecting, and Emmi had already started to show.
After a long talk with Everett, Katie and Josh it was decided that Emmi would not join fashion school, but attend art school instead. She loved nature and wanted to be in it and paint it.
Alone one night, watching TV, Everett told Katie.
“Not exactly how I had imagined it.”
“Oh Rett. It’s all good. We get to know our grandchildren well, see them all grow up and become their own people, since we are still young enough. Maybe we even see them get married and meet our great-grandchildren. It’s a good thing our kids didn’t wait to have kids as late as we did. Admittedly 18 is a bit young for my taste, too, I had hoped he’d be 25 like Evey, but still better than 30 and 37 like we did, huh?”
“I was ready long before then.” he smirked and winked.
“Yeah, do you remember how we almost broke up and all the drama, because I was afraid to get married even though I loved you since college, and even worse afraid of having kids. Look at us now. Had I known then … ” Katie reminisced.
“How could I forget. I only wish that our grandkids will have a calmer life than we and their parents had so far. Or at least that things stay calm from here on forward. ”
“One would hope.” Katie agreed.
The day of the wedding came fast. There was no time to do anything elaborate and neither groom nor bride were posh people. Both were outdoorsy, simple people and would spend their honeymoon in the woods, hiking and camping. It was what they wanted, even though Everett offered a generous typical honeymoon in a tropical location.
The wedding was family and closest friends only, all of they couple’s friends from high school were enjoying vacations before college and could not change their plans so unexpectedly.
They tried a boring, standard family photo …
…and then a more casual one.
A quick photo with the groom’s big sister Everleigh …
… while their parents remembered their own wedding in their own way.
And then it was over.