Chapter Five - Short-Lived Bliss
Back to: Chapter Four - The Question of Children
It’s astounding, how quickly life can change.

Hazel and I couldn’t afford to buy a house, but we could afford to rent a bigger apartment, so that’s what we did. Plenty of space for a family of three. Our landlord even let us decorate. I painted a blue sky full of fluffy white clouds; Hazel added castles and dragons. We wanted our child to feel like a prince or a princess.

Getting the bedroom ready was the fun part, of course. Preparing a space for a new arrival is one of those thing every expectant parent has to do, one of the things I’d anticipated. Paperwork, not so much.

And Watcher above, there was a lot of paperwork.

But this moment, right here?

This was the moment that made it all worthwhile.

It almost never snows here in Mesa Valley, but it snowed that day, the day we officially adopted Serdar. Like the weather, he felt a little bit like a miracle. Our long-awaited child, full of warmth and curiosity and kindness.

And so life was good for a while.

What else is there to say about that time?

Of course, I'm not claiming that life was perfect. Beaumont’s adoption bill passed that winter, and as Hazel had predicted, it destroyed any chances of us adopting a sibling for Serdar. And work was increasingly frustrating, with the trade talks bogged down in escalating disagreements and RedCity threatening to pull out entirely. But those things didn't seem so important back then. I knew I could always come home to the people I loved, and that was what mattered.

I miss them so much.

Like I said, it’s astounding how quickly life can change.

AN: Sorry it's been a while - I've been busy and distracted from writing. But this is where the actual challenge part gets going, finally! The next chapter - complete with an explanation of how Maria ended up in the situation you see in that last photo - will hopefully be coming soon.
Back to: Chapter Four - The Question of Children
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