Orb's Year 937
Dresden Consul sat down wearily before his darling children... and his wife's twins with another man.
"The man with the scar," Faelyn whispered.
Dresden glanced sharply at Faelyn and wondered what she had seen, but said nothing as her eyes filled with tears.
Dresden hugged his daughter tightly, "It isn't your fault. You are an innocent child. Why should you know to look for deceit?"
"But if I had told you..." she stammered.
Dresden shook his head sadly and finished the sentence for her. "I would have made excuses for her as I did our entire marriage." He attempted a half-smile. "It took her leaving me to see the truth of the matter."
Glancing over at his daughters, he grimaced. It had taken Gwen leaving and being cuckolded into seeing Gwen as she truly was. Wearily, he ran his hand over his face. At least she gave him four wonderful children.
"What am I going to do?" Faelyn cried unhappily. "I feel like I should be sad and cry, but in reality, I'm so thankful that she's gone!"
Haydin had no answers for her and stared sadly at his hands.
Orb's Year 938
"I was just trying to read, Father! I want to be just like you when I grow up!"
Dresden nodded, "That is as it should be. You are my son, my heir." Still, he was amazed by how much his son had grown in the last few months. "But, for now, enjoy your youth," he encouraged.
Holden sighed and walked out, mumbling, "I just wanted to be with you..."
Dresden's heart broke in pieces yet again. He'd been focusing on his own pain and ignoring the children... again.
Hurrying out the door, he headed for work, feeling quite unprepared to handle his children at the moment. Faelyn seemed to be doing a good enough job...
Haydin laughed as well. "You're just slow! I never win against anyone but you!"
"Yes?" she asked, straining to be polite.
Haydin sensed the undercurrent and glanced anxiously over at Gwendolyn, who appeared nervous and agitated. It was clear the twins were up to no good.
And then she struck...
Faelyn covered her mouth in shock. Had she spoken aloud in her sleep? For the truth was that she had dreamed of Earnest a few days ago. It had startled her when he had kissed her in the dream, but she had woken up wishing it had been real. It didn't make any sense though because Earnest drove her crazy! Faelyn glanced towards Haydin and discovered a slight smile on his face and she couldn't stand it anymore. Wiping at the tears in her eyes, she hurried inside the house.
"Faelyn! I wasn't laughing at you!" Haydin called out with a sigh. The idea of Faelyn having a romantic dream about Earnest had just been so preposterous!
Turning towards the twins, he fixed them with a stern glare. "I hope you're happy," he said, skewering them.
Gwendolyn had the grace to look embarrassed, but Gwenivieve just studied her well-filed nails casually and shrugged a shoulder. "I can't help what she dreams about, now can I?"
Faelyn sighed angrily. No, it was worse, she thought bitterly. She was beginning to hate her sisters!
Orb's Year 939
Faelyn scowled at her plate as Gwenivieve gushed. She had worked Father firmly around her finger. Somehow she made setting the table sound like a monumental accomplishment!
Gwenivieve shrugged innocently, "I was just playing around!"
Faelyn glared at her younger sister. "Well, stop it," she said shrewishly. Blessed Orb, she thought, how could they be related?
Haydin considered his reply, "Don't you get tired of being cruel?" he asked.
Gwendolyn flushed, "I'm not cruel," she insisted, rather guiltily. It was true. She might be the one saying or doing the cruel things, but she never stepped in to defend Faelyn against Gwenivieve. Not that she would be able to stop her twin... If she didn't follow along with Gwenivieve then there was every chance that her twin would turn on her!
Distracted, Gwendolyn made her move without thinking out a strategy.
As Haydin made his move without pause and captured Gwendolyn's Rook, he suggested, "The right path is not always the easiest path..."
Gwendolyn glanced down at the chess board with tears in her eyes and considered her next move...
Holden loved it when she read to him because she wasn't embarrassed to use different voices.
Gwendolyn glanced up, tampering down the urge to apologize. "Nothing, I'm just reading to Holden. Would you like to join us?"
Gwenivieve rolled her eyes, "No! Holden, go to bed," she ordered.
Holden jumped up, "No! I don't have to go to bed yet!"
Gwenivieve grabbed his ear and pinched. "I said it's time to go to bed!" she ordered.
Holden rubbed his ear and glared, but hurried off to his bedroom.
"Oh, he wasn't hurt!" Gwenivieve argued. "Besides, we needed him away so that he can't tell Father on us!"
"What do you mean?" Gwendolyn asked, confused.
Gwenivieve grinned. "I've invited a few friends over! Tonight, we're going to party!"
She had been so embarrassed that Gwendolyn had only hung back talking to their boring cousin Haydin. Cousin Gaius was so much more fun! She'd tried a few times to get Gwendolyn to come over, but she'd just shaken her head.
Narrowing her eyes, she wondered how she'd handle Gwendolyn. They were twins! They were supposed to stick together!
But that wasn't the biggest surprise of the night...
Faelyn cried even harder when he draped his arm around her shoulder. "But you hate me!"
Earnest awkwardly patted her shoulder. "I wouldn't say hate," he amended. "You do try my patience at times, though. Perhaps you could learn to be less critical?" he asked hopefully.
"I wouldn't have to be so critical if you wouldn't say such asinine things!" she countered, leaving her sadness behind as she began to get angry. "It is not my fault that you say such outlandish things!"
"Well if that's not the most asinine thing that I've ever heard!" Earnest countered, wondering not for the first time how their conversations turned so sour. She could be so pretty... and then she opened her mouth!
Faelyn stomped her foot. "This will not work," she said passionately, stomping her foot and huffing with impatience.
"Oh!" Faelyn stammered when he'd pulled away, blushing slightly.
Grinning, Earnest realized he might have discovered the only way to still her tongue! And what a pleasant way to win an argument it was!