1.62 More Than a Mother

Cordelia barely looked into the mirror as she pulled her hair into a lazy pony. This would do, she thought, yawning. It was almost 5 am. Not long till sunrise. These long summer days were a killer.

She made her way out of her room. Hawthorne’s voice reached her all the way on the top of the stairs. Her and Micah were painting, by the sounds of it.

“Make sure Freezer Bunny’s ears are really long,” Hawthorne instructed Micah. “That way he won’t get lost in San Myshuno.”

“Makes sense,” Micah nodded, touching up the painting in front of him. Cordelia smiled to herself. She loved how Micah’s pieces for Hawthorne were worlds apart from his usual moody art style.

“Morning, you two.” She greeted them.

“Hi mummy!” Hawthorne looked up briefly, too distracted by the copious amounts of glitter she was adding to her own painting.

“You could have slept in today, remember?” Micah said gently. Like she needed reminding.

“I wanted to see her off.” She willed herself to keep smiling as she turned to Hawthorne. “What did you paint, sweetie?”

“A meadow.” The girl said. “Though it’s not as pretty as Dandy’s one.”

“I think it’s beautiful.” Cordelia told her.

“Daddy painted Freezer Bunny all the way in San Myshuno.” Hawthorne carried on.

“I can see that.” Cordelia nodded. “Freezer Bunny sure is getting adventurous, travelling so far.”

“He probably just transportalated.” Hawthorne shrugged.

Micah glanced out of the window. “I’ll have to finish Freezer Bunny’s adventure tomorrow night, though. I need to head up soon.”

Hawthorne didn’t seem to mind. “That’s ok. Morgyn will be here soon anyway.”

“Can you wait a few more minutes?” Cordelia shot Micah a pleading look. “The sun’s not up yet…”

Damn Morgyn, taking their time. The whole point why they were supposed to come over at stupid o’clock was so that Cordelia didn’t have to deal with them alone.

“Look, here they are!” Hawthorne jumped up as the spellcaster’s silhouette peered through the glass door.

“Great.” Cordelia struggled to feign enthusiasm as she answered the door. Hawthorne didn’t seem to notice.

“Well if it isn’t my favourites…” Morgyn greeted them.

Before Cordelia could complain about Morgyn being late, Hawthorne rushed out of the door, flinging herself at the sage.

“Morgyn!”

“Hi, princess.” The spellcaster hugged her.

“Have you grown more since I last saw you?” Morgyn observed as they took a step back. “You never stop, do you?”

That much was true, Cordelia had to admit. At the very least, Hawthorne did seem to be developing at a regular pace, hitting all the milestones when she should. Or as Morgyn claimed, exceeding them.

“Maybe it’s all the vegetables mummy makes me eat.” Hawthorne pondered. “Do I really need to eat broccoli? I’ve got plasma fruit…”

 “You do, to get big and strong.” Micah interjected.

“You don’t eat any…” Hawthorne pouted.

Cordelia glared at Morgyn. This was all their fault…

“I’m sure your mother knows what’s best for you.” Morgyn said sweetly. “Besides, every powerful spellcaster I know eats broccoli.” They added with a smirk.

Luckily, the sarcasm in the sage’s voice went undetected by the girl. “Really?”

“Sure. But more importantly, who’s ready for a day of fun in the magic realm?” Morgyn asked instead.

“I am, I am!” Hawthorne bounced around.

“Have fun with Morgyn,” Micah told his daughter, giving her a quick peck on the cheek. “But be good. Both of you.” He added, glancing towards the sage.

Morgyn let out an amused laugh. “No promises.”

Cordelia felt her body growing stiff, but Micah’s hand found hers, squeezing it. They had agreed to limit any form of physical touch to avoid slip ups, but today, she was grateful for him breaking their own rules. He always knew how to sooth her.

Hawthorne noticed her expression. “Don’t worry, mummy!”

“Yes, don’t worry, Cordelia. I’m sure we’ll have a blast.” Morgyn flashed a grin in her direction. “Now, hang on tight Hawthorne…”

And with a flash, the two of them were gone.

Micah scanned the horizon. “I best head inside.” He told her, stepping back through the door. Cordelia followed.

“Morgyn shoudn’t have been so late…” She grumbled.

“They weren’t, really.” Micah pointed out. “We did say 5am…”

Cordelia frowned. Of course Micah would make excuses for the sage…

“What time was Hawthorne up this morning?” She changed the subject, trying to distract herself.

“3am.” Micah replied. “Better than yesterday.”

“That’s almost four hours of sleep,” Cordelia nodded wearily. Nowhere near what it should be, but at least it wasn’t less yet again. The older Hawthorne got, the less rest she seemed to need. Beyond it being exhausting, it worried Cordelia.

“Speaking of sleep, maybe you should try to get some more.” Micah told her. “You know, take advantage.”

“I’m not tired.” She lied. If she admitted she could use the rest, she might as well say Morgyn was doing them a favour by taking Hawthorne. Which was simply not the case.

“If you say so.” The vampire shrugged. “Anyway, I really need to head up to my room. Skin’s getting all itchy.”

“Right.”

“Sleep well.” She mouthed, though Micah was already halfway up the stairs. Then again, with his hearing, he could probably still make out her words.

Cordelia sighed. The house grew eerily quiet. Morgyn didn’t have Hawthorne over in the magic realm too often, but Cordelia loathed those times all the same. What on earth was she going to do with herself for an entire day?

Hawthorne was a very full-on child, with never-ending energy, and no need for naps. Kept Cordelia busy during the day. If Micah wasn’t able to look after her during the nights, Cordelia wasn’t sure what she’d do.

She dragged herself to the kitchen to get some breakfast.

Contrary to Hawthorne’s claims about broccoli, their fridge rarely had a great deal in it. Cordelia was the only one in the house who seemed to need regular food, so she usually just grabbed quick and easy meals. There didn’t seem to be much of a point, beyond her best efforts.

It wasn’t that Hawthorne couldn’t digest food. Unlike Micah, she was able to eat without any stomach troubles. But she seemed to take no pleasure in ordinary food at all, had no appetite, whatever Cordelia tried. She didn’t even find chocolate tempting. What child didn’t like chocolate?

She’d always known her daughter’s diet was going to be a struggle. When she was born, Hawthorne would only breastfeed as long as Cordelia kept eating the plasma fruit, but with the baby out of her body, Cordelia found the taste of the plasma fruit harder and harder to bear as the days went on.

Eventually, they just had to switch her to the pure plasma fruit juice, even as an infant. Cordelia had hoped to ween Hawthorne off it as she got older, but it had proven challenging, if not impossible.

Still, things could be worse. Hawthorne never expressed any cravings for blood, and her skin had no sensitivity to sunlight. She could play outside in broad daylight, just like any other girl.

Cordelia looked around the kitchen. The house was stupidly clean. Probably Micah’s doing; seemed that annoyingly, he’d kept on top of everything last night. Which left her very little to do.

There had to be some toys in Hawthorne’s room that needed putting away, at least.

Disappointingly, tidying Hawthorne’s room didn’t take long at all. Her and Micah had probably spent most of the early hours of the day painting.

She could do a plasma fruit run to Eden, Cordelia decided. There was barely any left in the fridge, after all. Of course, Cordelia knew most of their supply was in the shed, but she chose to ignore that fact.

She made her way into Sylvan Glade, past Dandy’s house, into the gardens.

Cordelia harvested a small basket of the ripe fruits, strolling back at a leisurely pace. She didn’t spot the elf in his garden on her way back. He was likely still asleep.

She headed to the shed to check on the latest juice fizzing batch. Juice fizzing was the one thing she could find satisfaction in, at least.

It only occurred to her earlier in the year that with Hawthorne starting school this autumn, having the girl carry plasma fruit in her backpack might get awkward if the fruit got squished and leaked through.

And so the juice fizzing idea was born. The great thing was she could just set the fruit away and the machine would run the course without much of a need for intervention.

Or at least, on most days, that was a great thing. Today, Cordelia wished that the process was more involved.

The day rolled over lazily, at a snail pace. Cordelia attempted to read, but as per usual, she was struggling to focus.

She never did get very far in her quest to become well-read. Pages in books never seemed to grab her attention for long. It just didn’t seem to be for her.

Thankfully, an actual distraction came her way in the early afternoon. There was a knock on the door.

Perplexed, Cordelia stood up, putting the book away. For the most part, the only visitors they ever got were Dandy and Morgyn, but Dandy wouldn’t bother knocking, and there was no chance Morgyn would bring Hawthorne back this early.

As far as Cordelia knew, they weren’t expecting any art appraisers to look at Micah’s work either – for the most part, Micah sorted selling his pieces online, and he always told Cordelia if any delivery services were due to collect one of his paintings to take it to its new owner.

But if that eliminated all possibilities, then who could it be?

“Hi there.” The blonde at the door smiled at Cordelia cautiously. “Mind if I come in?”

Cordelia was stumped. Emilia Charm was the last person she’d expect to pop by. On any other day, there was no way she’d allow any of the Charms through her front door. But seeing as she was exceptionally bored today…

“Um, sure.” Cordelia cleared her through, ushering the spellcaster into the kitchen. “Would you like something to drink?”

“That would be kind.” Emilia smiled as she sat down. “Your home is lovely, by the way. Has a warmth to it.”

“Thanks,” Cordelia muttered, placing a jar of iced-tea on the table. Small talk was never her strong suit. “Why are you here, Emilia?”

“Can’t a neighbour come say hello?” Emilia asked. Cordelia stared at her. It had been years since they last spoke, neighbours or not.

“Fine.” Emilia sighed, but managed to maintain her cheery expression. “I’m not sure if you’ve heard, but I am now responsible for running the Hex Shop. I’ve come to offer you a job.”

Cordelia blinked. That came out of nowhere.

“What? It’s been years…”

“And as far as I recall, you were still one of our best workers during that whole time.” Emilia said chirpily. “Well, besides Grace.”

Cordelia cleared her throat. “I… I don’t think me and Grace working together would be such a good idea.”

Emilia’s smile faltered. “Grace left Glimmerbrook. That’s why we have an empty position.”

“Grace left?” Cordelia was taken aback. “But… she always said Glimmerbrook was the place to be for those who were serious about their spellcasting career.”

“I think that might be the exactly it. She was quite disillusioned with it all.” Emilia looked into her eyes. “If you ask me, what went down between the spellcasters and you and your partner… if Morgyn hadn’t intervened… Darrel… Minerva…”

Emilia seemed lost for words. In all honesty, Cordelia was shocked the woman even brought any of it up. It was so long ago. Whenever she did run into the Charms in town, which was rare, they’d all just stuck to pretending nothing had ever happened. Why change it now?

“Micah is not my partner.” Cordelia interrupted Emilia, trying to steer away from discussing the unpleasant memory further. But the woman was not taking the out.

“That’s not really the point. Cordelia-“

“It’s in the past.” Cordelia insisted. “Anyway, thank you for thinking of me Emilia, but I wouldn’t feel comfortable working for Darrel.”

Cordelia was painfully aware of the contradictions in her words, but hoped the spellcaster wouldn’t call her out on it – this wasn’t Morgyn she was talking to, after all.

“You wouldn’t be working for Darrel, you would be working for me.” Emilia told her. “Darrel has other interests than the shop now.”

“I’m quite busy with my daughter.” Cordelia said stiffly.

Emilia paused. “I saw her in the magic realm this morning, you know. Hawthorne.”

“Oh?”

“She’s around the same age as my Ollie, isn’t she?” Emilia continued. “Means she’ll be starting school once the summer’s over. You won’t be busy with Hawthorne then, will you?”

Not this. It was bad enough Micah was on her back about that. Now a complete stranger, no, Darrel’s wife of all people, waltzed into her house to lecture her? “How I spend my time is up to me.”

“Look, Cordelia, I know you’ve been keeping to yourself after that… misunderstanding.” Emilia treaded carefully around the topic. “But it’s been years now. Glimmerbrook’s a small place. Our children will be running into each other a lot now. I don’t want any bad blood from the past affecting them.”

Cordelia wasn’t sure what to say.

Emilia took her silence as encouragement. “I know you don’t like the idea of working for Darrel’s wife.” She carried on with her pitch. “But I’m more than just Darrel’s wife. And you’re more than just Hawthorne’s mother.”

Cordelia wanted to snap at her, but she couldn’t think of anything good to say. It was all very reasonable. Kind, even. “I… I’ll think about it.”

“I’m glad.” Emilia told her.

“Emilia… why are you doing this?”

“Why not?” The woman shrugged. “We who weren’t born into this world of magic should stick together.”

What a strange thing to say, Cordelia thought. “You’re a spellcaster, though.” She pointed out.

“By name only. I never really progressed much with my training after my ascension.” Emilia replied.

“Why not?”

Emilia tilted her head slightly. “I didn’t think it was worth the trade-off.”

28 thoughts on “1.62 More Than a Mother

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  1. Cordy and Hawthorne’s pictures on the wall are adorable! So are the pictures of Slyvan Glade. Daw.. so many personal paintings on the wall. How old is Cordy now?

    I noticed throughout the chapter that Cordelia hasn’t once expressed any cordial feelings for Morgyn, but Hawthorne casually suggested that Micah transportalated to San Myshuno. Does that mean Micah is still seeing Morgyn? Cordy has definitely broken it off with them though.

    It’s been quite a few years since the last chapter. I wonder if Dandy will soon grow out of Slyvan Glade, which makes me wonder where do elves live or go? Glimmerbook? Or he might very well stay in Slyvan Glade forever because of the pure of heart thingy.

    I think it’s awfully nice for Emilia to offer Cordy a job. It shows her acceptance of Hawthorne and Micah. Given the whole ‘kill the vampire’ thing in the past, Emilia is actually going against the grain. Then again, maybe the townspeople have grown accustomed to their presence and there’s less of a bias towards them. Still, she’s doing a first.

    Or it could all be a hoax and Emilia is scheming evil stuff. Which I don’t think so given how she was portrayed in her previous chapters. Still years (and children) can change a person. 😀

    Ooh I wonder what’s the trade-off!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I enjoyed re-decorating the house and making it more personal to them 🙂 I wish I could have photos of Micah with Hawthorne too, but his paintings have to make do. It’s been 5 or 6 years since the last chapter (depending on the particular school system in place in Glimmerbrook, haha), so Cordelia is 25 or 26.

      Ah, I can see with the way it’s worded it does sound like Micah made the painting in San Myshuno, but Hawthorne’s actually just referring to Freezer Bunny being in San Myshuno, not necessarily Micah 😀 Good question though. And yes, Cordelia’s not particularly cordial towards Morgyn here, that’s for sure. Technically it was Morgyn who broke things off, after Micah asked them to choose (Cordie and Morgyn haven’t had any romantic involvement since then) but you’re right, safe to say she has very little love for the sage now.

      Ooh. I suppose that depends on why Dandy lives in Sylvan Glade in the first place – was he there with a bunch of other elves who just left because they happened to grow up? In any case, we’ll see Dandy soon!

      Yes, Emilia is definitely the first to try to make amends here. I suppose she’s never been particularly worried about going against the grain. True, it’s tricky to know what her motivations might be – she never took part in the ‘kill the vampire’ thing, so we don’t know what her thoughts might have been, even then. She may have disagreed, though clearly not strongly enough to leave Darrell over it. So who knows. But yes, in general, the townsfolk may just feel a bit more ok with Micah living in their midst after a few years have passed.

      Ha, if only Emilia shared what the trade-off was…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hm… so Micah and Morgyn might still have lingering feelings for each other then. Cool. Still pretty messy, since they Cordy and Micah actually have to put up rules to prevent slip ups lolol. So far so good I guess.

        My guess is Dandy got plopped there. Would be weird if Dandy’s the only remaining elf in Slyvan Glade. Unless some huge elf apocalypse happened and only he and Faba managed to get away. >.>Well.. that’s morbid.

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  2. I blinked and lost 5 years! 😲 I wanted to see little grey toddler but I get it; I always skip that stage in game too.

    Cordelia still struggles with Morgyn after all this time? That must’ve been quite some night in that tent way back in Selvadorada. Or maybe it was the whole dying/coming back to life event. Or Morgyn and Micah still rubbing it in her face. Or the constant fear that they’ll take her daughter away. Aw, Morgyn the proud parent, um… godparent? Owner? “be good.” Oh dear, what the heck do visits to the Magic Realm usually entail? “A blast” ooh fun! Fire! That always ends well.

    “They had agreed to limit any form of physical touch to avoid slip ups.” Slip ups, eh… 😉

    Yes Cordelia, make a friend and take the job before you lose your mind and end up writing SimLit and random comments on other people’s SimLit. Although if Darrell has other interests, Emilia’s feeling left out somehow, seeking solace in someone similar, a trade-off – and of course you leave us hanging there, you meanie – maybe she’s on the brink of SimLit too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha. You might want to get used to that… But if it is grey toddler you want, I can send you the original shots of some of those pictures on the wall. At least I think I still have them.

      Cordelia struggles with Morgyn, though in a whole different way then she did back in those Selvadorada trip times. More on Hawthorne’s magic realm trip in the next one 🙂

      Oh you know, slip ups, slip ins… I’ll shut up now 😅 ‘Oops, I tripped’ comes back to mind 😂

      Lol. God forbid that 😀 Would definitely be very meta. Though given how much Cordelia “loves” reading, I’m not so sure writing simlit would be her thing. Oh, more on Darrel’s other interests soon too!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Okay, this is all too fast, haha! How far did you play? A lot of time has passed since chapter 60 for sure. 😅 I suppose I got my wish to see what Hawthorne would be like once she “comes of age” like Verena! XD

    So Cordelia and Micah aren’t in a relationship, which I suppose is understandable, but they’re excellent parents in my opinion. But it seems as if Morgyn is Hawthorne’s godparent now, which is slightly worrying, but I doubt they’d have any ill will towards their lovers’ child. 🙂

    Hawthorne does have gray skin but everyone’s used to it, I suppose. Seeing as she doesn’t have any taste when it comes to food, can she only survive on plasma? And does she have any vampire powers? I have a feeling she does, but it might not be that strong, with human blood mixing in with the vampire blood. She does have human skin since the sun (non-Sylvan Glade skin of course) doesn’t scald her skin like how it scalds her father’s skin. I think she’s a unique hybrid since we haven’t had any comparison to other hybrids yet. 🙂

    Yay, we get to see a Charm, finally! Glad that Emilia came over, since she was kind to Cordelia all those years before. Although they don’t seem to remember that anymore, which is a little disappointing, but I guess little/no interaction with each other for many years can do that. Darrel and Emilia also have a child which is cool! 😀 When can we see Ollie? I hope she’s like her mom! 🙂

    What trade-off is Emilia talking about? Are we delving into a new subplot? Yay! 😂 This story is getting even more interesting! 😀

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    1. Gah I typed out a long response and WP decided to keel over.

      If you think this is too fast, you may want to fasten your seatbelt since I’m not one with time jumps yet 😀 We will make a brief stop here, but don’t get too comfortable. How far did I play? Well really I just play out the stuff I need, the chapters aren’t really particularly game-driven.

      Cordelia and Micah do try their best at parenting, for sure. But it was Morgyn who wanted the child to begin with, so of course they are involved – wouldn’t have gone into all that trouble only to step away 😀

      Who even knows if there are other hybrids? I don’t think vamps typically get sexy with their food 😀 In any case, nobody in the picture has any point of reference, so we’ll have to wait and see how exactly Hawthorne differs from regular humans and regular vamps, although we’re already getting a bit of an indication now 🙂

      I’m sure Cordelia does remember Emilia was nice to her – it just kind of got overshadowed by the whole incident where Emilia’s familiy tried to you know, murder her and Micah 😅 You will see Ollie soon – though Ollie’s actually a he, it’s short for Oliver 🙂

      Who says it’s new? 🙂

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      1. Oof, WordPress is a strange thing! I usually copy my comments before pasting to make sure nothing gets lost, just so you know. 🙂

        Alright, let me fasten it then! XD I guess time jumps is still experimental for us! 🙂 Ah, I understand, I just wanted to know, because of the pictures on that wall and the huge time skip. 😉

        Haha, I suppose Morgyn doesn’t want to lose what he invested in, but I do believe he might have some ulterior motive. After all, he wanted this child to be his heir! 🙂

        I don’t know, maybe another vampire (like Micah) betrayed the vampire customs by saving a human girl, wanted a vampire cure but couldn’t find one, so he and the girl he saved ended up marrying, had a few hybrid children and lived happily ever after? (The last part is unlike Micah, lol! 🤣 ) I don’t know, maybe it happened sometime in the past but it was secret? 😀 ??? Hawthorne probably is the first recorded vampire-human hybrid in history, but I have a feeling she isn’t the first of her kind. 😉

        Haha, yeah, although I’ve assumed that Cordelia wouldn’t hold it against Emilia since she wasn’t there, but I suppose after all these years without talking to Emilia she has just blended in with the Charm family in Cordelia’s vision now. XD
        Oh, Ollie’s a he? Haha, that’s interesting to know, I’ve never really thought Ollie could be a pet name for Oliver, I’ve just only associated it in the girl category! 😂

        Indeed! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I do that most of the time too, more so when I comment on other people’s blogs than my own though, which clearly was a mistake haha.

          I’m sure Micah isn’t the first vampire to sympathise with humans – I feel like there’s two types of vampires, ones who accept their new reality and that mortals are just food, and ones who like Micah struggle to move past their old life and try to keep humans alive. The former may have, err, sexy times with humans, however they likely turn into feeding times, so can’t imagine many hybrids resulting from that.

          The latter likely try to distance from humans in order to protect them rather than mate with them, much like Micah did when we first met him. Unlike Micah, they wouldn’t have access to plasma fruit (unless they just happen to be friends with a really kind elf with access to growfruit who will happily use their blood for unconventional gardening, lol), so they’d still have to feed on people. Which can ultimately end in a few ways, none of them particularly happy though – it’s not so much about what they want but what their nature/instincts are. At least in my opinion. But I think we’ve already established you’re way more of an optimist than I am 😀 But yes, it’s possible Hawthorne is not the first hybrid. The happily ever after for other vamps in Micah’s position… I think that’s more of a long shot 😀

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  4. Oof. It sure looks like Cordelia has hyper-focused on Hawthorne, letting everything else fall by the wayside until “mother” is all she identifies with. That’s not good. I wonder if she still builds things, or carves things for herself.

    Princess, huh? Looks like Morgyn really did grow attached to Hawthorne. I wonder what kind of things they get up to when they leave. With the casual way Hawthorne was mentioning transportalating, she seems very very used to magic.
    And whoa, that glare that Cordelia keeps throwing Morgyn’s way. I wonder if Morgyn and Micah are still involved, or if the love triangle has faded. I can see Cordelia coming to resent Morgyn over time, while being stuck with the love spell and infatuated with Micah. And Micah choosing his daughter and her mother over Morgyn like he said, but still carrying a torch for Morgyn and knowing that wat he and Cordelia have is fake. That would explain why they’re so dead-set on not getting physical with each other.

    Ooooh Emilia might be just what Cordelia needs. Emilia and a job. Anything to carve out a bit of identity for herself again. I wonder what “other interests” Darrel has now. And what that ominous bit about the “trade-off” of her ascension is gah why stop the chapter there now I need to know! xDDDD

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Indeed, not a healthy attitude. But shaping her whole identity around someone else is hardly a new behaviour for Cordelia. As for whether she still crafts things, well, even before the time jump she didn’t really do much of that anymore, and the majority of the shed seems to be taken up by a juice fizzing machine now, so…

      We’ll actually see some of Hawthorne’s trip to the magic realm in the next chapter. But yes, she is used to magic surrounding her.

      Interesting guesses/predictions. We’ll see more of their different dynamics soon!

      She might just be that, let’s hope Cordelia sees that. We will learn a bit more about Darrel’s current interests soon too. (Ok, I feel like I just keep saying soon to everything, oops 😀 ) Ominous? I don’t know what you’re talking about…

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  5. I love the title of your chapter 💖

    If you have tried to be a mother yourself, you have also experienced how the minor child fills everything in your horizon. Suddenly one day your child gets older and does not need you in the same all-encompassing way.
    This is exactly how I understand what happens to Cordelia and therefore it is also ingenious that you skip all the intervening years, but simply mark them with the pictures on the wall.
    Cordelia feels the void and it looks like she has not progressed in her relationship with Morgyn. We meet her in the same awkward unresolved emotional chaos as when we said goodbye to her in the hospital.

    Now she has been given an unexpected visit by a woman she considers to be an opponent. It might turn out that they have more in common than she expects.
    I’m excited about what’s growing out of meeting Emilia Charm 🤗

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I do not have children but I can certainly imagine they’d take over your life, especially when they’re very young. Navigating who you are once they need you less is probably tricky even for people with a stronger sense of identity than Cordelia.

      Thank you 🙂 I adore the pictures in their house.

      Haha, the relationship progressed, but not necessarily in a constructive way. Unresolved emotional chaos definitely still applies, yes 😀

      Hopefully what Emilia’s offering might be good for Cordelia!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. First of all, I LOVE the detail of the family photos! In some ways, this chapter was an evolution for Cordelia. She’s not completely hung up on Morgyn and defining herself by it. In other ways, she’s repeating the same kind of behavior with Hawthorne by making her entire identity be “Hawthorne’s Mom.”

    I never thought I’d say this, but shout out to Emilia Charm! That heart-to-heart she had with Cordelia coupled with the job offer was just what the doctor ordered. I hope Cordy takes her up on it.

    Also, IF YOU THINK I DIDN’T SEE THE HAND SQUEEZE, YOU ARE WRONG.

    Of course, Morgyn just swoops in and takes Hawthorne to fun stuff at Magic HQ. What are they up to?

    Oh, and Emilia’s last line gave me chills.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Woah, you’ve been up late – I’m just getting up over here in Europe 😆

      Thank you! I adore the family photos ❤

      Yes, that is exactly what Cordelia did, she resolved her fixation on Morgyn by getting fixated on Hawthorne instead. She is far too eager to let herself be defined by someone else, isn't she?

      Emilia Charm is lovely. And definitely had good timing here. Let's hope Cordelia takes any of it to heart.

      Hand squeeze, what hand squeeze? 😇

      Fun day out with Morgyn, yay! In fairness, what child would not loved being whisked away to a magical realm for a day 😊

      It was a tad ominous, yes. Then again, Emilia is still with Darrel, so she can't think whatever the trade-off is is that bad, right?

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Hmm it feels like neither Micah nor Cory are too happy about Morgyn meeting their daughter. I wonder why they never forbade them to visit Hawthorne.
    I assume Micah’s still having that affair and Cory just doesn’t have the guts.

    And again, it looks like Emilia is the only person that has the potential of becoming a true friend for Cory.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. To be fair, it’s probably difficult to forbid someone who is a master of untamed magic from doing anything.

      Emilia’s definitely tried to reach out a few times. If she wasn’t involved with Darrel, they could have probably been good friends.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I would not expect that they’d be successful 😂 But they don’t even try. I guess it does not occur to them that Morgyn may be harmful to their child.
        They might even think that Hawthorne would benefit more than lose from fairy godparent Morgyn!

        People you’re related to, can ruin so much, right? 😞

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh yes, would could Emilia possibly be implying… She ought to know a fair bit about spellcasters, having married into one of the oldest spellcaster families in town.

      Aww yes, Hawthorne was super cute at this age ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Oh hell yes. Hawthorne’s first line is already employing my favorite device for written humor, which is dropping phrases in passing that sound like they should make sense but just don’t. Like “McDonald’s patient” or “a whole other meatball” or “loud as mountains” or “make sure Freezer Bunny’s ears are really long so he doesn’t get lost.”

    Ahh!! And Cordelia’s one step closer to giving no shakes! She gave all the shakes, and then fewer shakes in the opposite direction, and hopefully soon she’ll be able to shake them off entirely! Now I won’t go as far as to say I wish I had her problems, but it’s not like I’m connecting with her on the complaint that there’s not enough housework to do.

    Bless Emilia. Again. I was going to make a Stepford Wives joke, but she has excellent timing nipping that in the bud. And I know it was a point of The Stepford Wives that there’s always more “women’s work” to do even with the technology we’ve developed, so there’s also something to appreciate in that this is another way the sim world differs from ours. It ends! Eventually.

    Tradeoff—girl, what did that girl just say, girl?

    Cute family pictures. And “I best head inside”… I assume that’s dialectical slang, and I’ve never seen it before. Shiny!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Heh, I’m glad you enjoyed it. Not many opportunities to inject a bit of humour into BC.

      Yep, Cordelia’s now shaking the whole other way. Zero shaking would definitely be the optimum amount. She did go a little Stepford Housewives there, and nobody’s even requesting she do that. She’s just looking for busy work because god forbid she did something that’s not functional. Which is sad.

      I wish Emilia could feature more, but she’s probably far too reasonable for that. Tradeoff? I can’t hear you, lalala.

      You had me wondering if I made the phrase up, but it is indeed a real thing!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Haha, I figured it was dialectical! You know I throw a lot of dialect into my writing, so passive-aggressively criticizing someone else’s grammar when it could be slang I’m not familiar with is a Bad Move.

        Liked by 1 person

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