N/A: Hey there you guys! It's great to be back to give you something new, also I apologize this is now the update of Sanctuary as you were expecting, but let me tell you something. This story is what's been stuck in my mind for so long until I decided to make it real, and I'm very confident that you're gonna like this.
There's one thing I want to let you know first, this story will feature an OC from a fanfic by my friend AlejinX, The First Loud. This is one of my favorite stories that I got attached with this character and really inspired me to make a new Loud House fanfic with him as a protagonist. The reason is that I believed he's the perfect choice for his role in this story. I talked to him about my idea and he granted my permission to use his character. Also we agreed to work together on this story.
Let's say that this takes place after The First Loud, you could say this is a sequel but… Well, it's sort of.
One more thing I need to tell you, when you reach the end of this chapter, please read my final note, it's really important.
Chapter 1: Family Struggles.
On a quiet morning in a small neighborhood of Franklin Avenue, as the sound of the birds chirping and singing that could wake up the residents to start the day.
A delivery guy was riding a bike across the street while he was delivering the newspapers at every single house he passed by, until he threw one of them at the door of the Loud residence. Then, the door was opened to reveal a young man, about almost twenty years old with shaggy hair and freckles on his cheeks. He was wearing a grey robe and holding a coffee mug in his hand.
He picked up the newspaper and was about to get back inside, but then he began to notice that someone was watching him. He turned his head over his shoulder and blinked in surprise when he saw it was the readers.
"Oh, hi there." He greeted with a friendly wave. "Sorry I didn't notice you guys before. I know, you're probably asking who I am. Well, my name is Luke Loud, nice to meet you all. Before you guys say something, I know some of you might be surprised for the fact I have the surname of the people you know and love. Since you don't know about me, I tell you everything you need to know while I make the breakfast for my family."
Luke got back inside of his house and closed the door, before he went to the kitchen. He left his mug on the counter and took out a bowl from a shelf.
"You see, I was raised by a single woman and I spent my childhood to the beginning of my adulthood. My past life wasn't complicated if you ask me, she took great care of me and I could never be thankful to have someone who could be a great mother as her." He smiled, but then his face grew solemn. "But when I turned fifteen, she confessed that we are not related. She told me that before she adopted me, she had a car accident that took her husband and her unborn child away. I was shocked when I just learned that I was adopted, but at the same time I felt really bad how that accident almost destroyed her life. She couldn't even adopt a child because they tagged her as a mentally unstable."
He remained silent for the second as he started making the dough by mixing the ingredients into the bowl.
"After my 21st birthday... she grew very sick that the doctors said it was impossible to cure her. Yeah, that hit me really hard and I did my best to spend my last moments with her. But here's the thing, before she passed away, she told me the truth about how we met. One day when she was in the park, trying to recover from the tragedy she suffered, she found a baby with a mother who was waiting another child. And in that moment, believe it or not, after she saw how a woman could be so lucky to have a child and not her… she followed the woman with the baby to her residence, and until she had the right moment, she broke in and took the baby away from his family. Next day, the news about a lost baby started to spread, but she could hide her tracks so nobody would find her and moved away with the baby from Royal Woods to a town nearby, just for a while. In that time, she changed the baby's name so she would have him as her own son."
After making the dough, he turned on the stove and placed a large pan to warm it up.
"I realized that I was the baby, and that woman who my adoptive mother bumped into her, was actually my real mother. After she finished with her confession, I was not happy with what she just told me; even I started to imagine how my family was devastated. But… I couldn't be mad at her… she was still the woman who took care of me for many years."
He let out a sigh of grief, as he fought back his emotions when he started to remember the moment when his adoptive mother closed her eyes, to never open them again.
"I understand you're thinking what she did was very unacceptable, and trust me, I'm not proud of her what she did. But honestly, if I was in her place, I would do the same." He responded. "She was very depressed that she had suicidal thoughts, even though she was fighting back to move forward. But thanks to me, she found happiness to have someone to love. I saved her life."
"After I forgave her, she told me some things I should have known about my real family. Funny thing though, I was incredibly shocked when she revealed my parents have 10 girls and only one boy." He chuckled as he shook his head. "Anyways, her last wish was for me to reunite with them if I want to. However, I was very unsure if they would recognize me, I wanted to meet them face to face, but I was still afraid."
The smile grew on his face. "But I didn't stop trying, until I finally meet my parents after so many years. They were so happy to see me after so many years away from them, and then I got the chance to meet my sisters and my little brother. They never knew about my existence, though; in fact, they always thought Lincoln was the only brother they could have. In the end, my family cleaned the attic to make my own bedroom. And so, I moved out from my adoptive mother's house to live here. I know you're now asking me, how I'm gonna survive with my ten sisters and one brother? To be honest, this is totally new for me, but don't worry, just wait and see."
Suddenly, he heard some footsteps coming from the stairs and the sound come closer. He turned around and as he predicted, Lori was the first one to rising up in the morning.
"Morning Lori." Luke greeted her with a smile. "I was about to make the pancakes, also I made some coffee."
"Thanks bro, I really needed that." Lori said with a yawn.
Lori was the first person who got to know him. At first, she found herself hard to believe she has a lost brother, but then she grew angry for the fact she grew up without him because of that woman she raised him. Luke knew he should have spent some great moments with her when they were kids, but luckily he managed to gain her trust that marked the beginning of a special bond between them.
"Has the others already woke up?" Luke asked as he grabbed his mug to take another sip of his coffee.
"Just Leni, as far as I know, had to help her taking off her sleeping mask because she forgot she was wearing it." Lori rubbed her eyes, doing her best to get used to Leni's witless.
"Well, excuse me for the fact I was blind to know that!" Leni replied as she was standing next to her, clearly offended by her statement.
"Morning Leni, did you sleep well?" Luke spoke kindly as he walked up to her.
When Leni noticed her brother, she gasped in surprise before she ran up to hug him, catching him by surprise.
"Oh my gosh! I didn't know you stayed here! I thought you said you had to go, why didn't you tell me you changed your mind?" She said joyfully, as she was almost crushing his lungs with her bone-crushing hug.
Leni would have been the only sister who shows great affection towards Luke. It started when he bumped into her at a dinner and saved her from a punk who was harassing her. But the interesting detail is that when they first met, she felt that somehow there's something special about Luke, like she felt very secure when she's around with him. After learning the truth, she had no hesitation at all to accept him as her eldest brother, and she had never been so happy to have another brother aside Lincoln.
"Leni, he's literally living with us for about a month ago!" Lori corrected with a groan.
"Really?! This is like the best news I ever heard! Then I should tell the others, they're gonna be, like, so excited!" Leni squealed while jumping in excitement.
"Um sis, we all already know that." A new voice brought their attention, as they turned to see Luna approaching, along with Luan.
"What? And none of you guys told me before? That is so unfair for you!" She complained as she crossed her arms.
Everyone resisted the urge to facepalm. Luke, however, just chuckled and patted her shoulder.
"Now, now, it doesn't matter. The important thing is that from now on I won't leave and I'll be here whatever you need." His words were enough to cheer her up, before the young fashion designer hugged him once again.
"Oh my gosh, this calls for a celebration! I'm gonna make special smoothie for you!" And then, she went to the fridge and picked up some ingredients.
Luke just smiled to see how happy she is, and before he would go back cooking the pancakes, Luna approached to him.
"Hey bro, I took my time to hear that song you were begging me to check out. You were right, this totally rocks!" Luna spoke to Luke as she handed him a cassette.
"Glad you enjoyed it, but maybe you should keep it so you can share it with your friends. They're gonna bang their heads for sure."
"Sounds like a good idea. Thanks dude." Luna gave him a smile of appreciation.
The first meeting between him and Luna wasn't pleasantly when he introduced himself to his sisters, it turned out that Luna has met Luke before when they were kids, but they've never seen each other again for years. Luke regretted he didn't realize about the very first friend he made, but luckily he had one proof to show her he didn't forget about her. Eventually, Luna forgave him, but with the condition of never abandoning her and her family. Since then, their relation has started to get better over time.
"Anyways, why don't you have some coffee while I make the breakfast for you?" Luke offered kindly.
"Thanks Luke, you sure know how making our morning brewutiful. Hahaha, get it?" Luan made the first pun of the day.
Luna groaned as she tried to pretend she didn't hear that, but to her surprise, Luke was actually laughing. In fact, he's been laughing at every pun she's been doing at any moment, and he wasn't even pretending at all. Everyone was wondering why, is it because how bad they are? Or maybe he didn't hear those jokes before? Nonetheless, Luan was very happy to have someone else besides her father who really finds her jokes funny.
"That's a good one, but I think it's too early to make yolks." Luke mentally admitted that pun was pretty bad, but at least he made Luan burst out giggling, though Luna was just shaking her head in disbelief.
"Nice one, Luke! I wish our dad was here to hear that joke." Luan said. Then she and Luna walked off to meet their other sisters in the kitchen.
Luke was about to follow them so he can make the breakfast, but Lori approached him with a cup of coffee on her hand.
"Hey, would you check on Lily and see if she's awake?" Lori asked "Don't worry, I'll make the pancakes for them."
Luke blinked in puzzle, wondering when was the last time Lori made that suggestion, but he shrugged and answered."Of course."
Luke exited the dining room and went back upstairs to the second floor, but before he was about to go towards a door on the right side of the hall, he stopped his tracks when he heard a commotion from the other side.
"I'm going to the bathroom first!"
"No, I should be the one who goes first because I'm the one who deserves respect!"
Luke saw Lana and Lona standing in front of a door which leads the bathroom while arguing each other, and he knew he had to intervene before this would get out of control.
"Girls, calm down. What seems to be the problem?" Luke asked as he walked towards the twins.
"I want to go to the bathroom and it's really an emergency!" Lana said, dancing around while she was feeling an unpleasant strain. "But she demands to be the first. She's not even gonna use the toilet!" She pointed her finger at the little princess.
"For your information, my hair needs to be fixed urgently!" Lola pointed her tangled hair. "And there's no way I'm gonna let you leave the bathroom smelling!" Lola retorted with a glare.
"What did you say?!" Lana responded with a growl.
"Enough, both of you. I think I have a solution that could work out for both you." Luke said, as the twins turned to him with attention. "I say Lana should be the one to use the bathroom and I'll ask Lincoln if he can help you with your hair. How's that sound?"
Lola was about to complain at the moment he said Lana will be the first, but when he made a suggestion, she started to realize that's not a bad idea. In fact, he used to coach her for her pageants and honestly, he's not bad at brushing her hair without ripping it out.
"Hmm, I hadn't thought that before." She replied while rubbing her chin. "Alright, that sounds very convenient, but I hope he will because I refuse to go downstairs with my hair like that!" Then she made her way back to her bedroom.
"Thank you, Luke! I could hug you, but right now I have important business to do!" Lana ran into the bathroom and closed the door with a slam.
Luke just chuckled, though he would like to receive a hug from her or Lola. Ever since Lana and Lola met him, they had consulted him more than Lincoln because they believe that since he's their older brother, he can help with whatever they need. In fact, he proved to be the only one who can stop them from fighting effortlessly and make them apologize to each other.
Feeling he has nothing else to do after solving another sister quarrel, he proceeded to another door which leads to another bedroom. But suddenly the door was opened, though he didn't see anyone in front of his eyes. He looked down and saw it was the genius of the family, Lisa.
In their first encounter, she deeply analyzed him to be completely convinced that he's the real member of the Loud family. And after finding out that his blond hair is similar to Leni's, he shares the same eye color as their mother and he also has the same freckles as some of her siblings, it was enough for her to believe Luke's her brother. Unlike his siblings, he agreed to be part of some of her experiments, though he had to give a couple of conditions to avoid incidents.
"Morning, eldest brother, I take that you managed to deal with a little confrontation between Lola and Lana, correct?" She asked with a stoic tone.
"That's right, I take that you were hearing the yelling." Luke deduced, receiving a nod from Lisa as an answer.
"But do not worry, with the help of Lincoln's earbuds, I already made sure Lily won't be disturbed. And I'm going to deduce that your purpose of your presence is to pick her up, isn't it?" Luke nodded. "Very well, she's about to wake up in about 10.36 seconds."
Luke stood aside to let Lisa get out before he entered the room and went to the crib, he looked down and watched Lily sleeping with a teddy bear around her arms. He waited for seconds and as Lisa calculated, the baby cracked her eyes open and let out a cute yawn, which made his heart melt, until she saw the face of her brother.
"Lug! Lug!" Lily cooed with her hands raised, meaning she wanted him to grab her.
Luke's smile widened before he carried the baby out of the crib to his arms and rocked her. Sometimes when Lily is in his arms, she refuses to be taken away from him, which proves that she has an unbreakable bond with him.
"Good morning, little girl. Did you have a good sleep?" Luke asked softly as he tickled her belly with his finger, as she giggled and waved her arms.
It was a shame Luke didn't get to see the birth of every one of his siblings, but he was very glad to know that at least the tenth sister's still an infant, so he could have a chance to see her grow up, learning how to write, going to the kindergarten, even using the toilet for the first time.
"How about we go to the kitchen and I'll give you a nice bowl of apple puree?"
Lily squealed happily as a way to say yes, before Luke walked out. But before he was about to go downstairs, another door which was on the end of the hallway was just opened and the white-haired kid came out, as he bended over backwards with his arms outstretched.
"Hey Lincoln, good morning." Luke greeted to his little brother.
Lincoln blinked before turning to Luke. "Oh, morning Luke, hey Lily." He approached to the toddler and rubbed her head. "I heard some yelling moments ago, was it Lana and Lola?"
"Yeah, they just had a little discussion as usual, but I already took care of it. By the way, Lola is waiting for you to untangle her hair."
"Wait, what? Is not Lori's job to do that?" Lincoln asked with a puzzled look.
"Well, yeah, but I just suggested her I'd ask you if you can do the job and then she agreed. It looks like for some reason she needs you more than Lori. But hey, I'm pretty sure she will be very appreciated if you help her." When he noticed the doubtfulness on his young brother's face, he came up an idea. "How about this, after you do the favor, I promise I will take you to the mall and buy the new Muscle Fish videogame."
"Wait, for real?" Lincoln replied in surprise, but then he grew unsure. "I-I don't know. You don't have to bother doing that to convince me."
"Not at all, I was thinking to buy you that game anyway. Since I've been a little busy with our sisters without doing something together, I thought this would be a good way to make it up to you."
"You mean it?" Lincoln gasped, as his older brother gave him a sincere nod. "I… I don't know what to say, but you have a deal! Is Lola in her bedroom?"
"Yep, and she's waiting for you. You better get going before she gets impatient." Luke replied.
Lincoln nodded before he ran across the hall, but he stopped halfway through for a moment to turn to his brother. "And thank you!" Then he continued his way until he got into Lola and Lana's bedroom.
Lincoln never felt so overjoyed after his mother revealed about the existence of his older brother, though his first reaction was incredulity to hear that kind of news all of a sudden. Unlike the genderbent versions of his sisters from a nightmare he had, Luke was very kind to him and even they have a lot in common.
"GAH!" Luke and Lily yelped with a jump, but he was careful to not let go of his sister.
They looked down where they heard the voice and saw the gothic girl standing beside them, completely unfazed after unintentionally giving them a fright.
"Oh, hey Lucy. I didn't see you getting out of your room." Luke said as he was recovering from the jump scare he just got.
"I just did while you were talking to Lincoln." Lucy replied with her gloomy tone as usual. "I was waiting until I could talk to you."
"Ah, I see. What do you need?"
"Today I'm going to the book store with Rocky, I was thinking I could buy him a good novel with some gothic elements. The problem is, I don't know what kind of novel he might be interested. I was wondering if you can give me an idea." Lucy explained.
Luke rubbed his chin in a ponder. "Hmm, that depends on his tastes. But I think I know a really good book you would recommend him. Try "The Phantom of Opera" by Gaston Leroux, if he has seen movies or theater plays, tell him that book is way better than those adaptations. I'm sure he's gonna like it."
"That's a great choice, thank you Luke." Lucy gave him a small smile before she left.
Luke didn't mind that one of his sisters is a goth, even he openly admitted that he found her personality cute, despite she has a morbid and serious point of view. Lucy swore nobody has said something like that to her before, which almost made her feel embarrassed, but at the same time a little happy someone.
Reacting quickly, Luke held up his hand and caught a football before it almost hit in the face. He didn't have to wonder who threw it because after hearing someone calling out, he knew it was the sport sister, Lynn. He saw her standing outside of her bedroom.
"Heh, nice catch big bro!" Lynn said with a grin, giving him a thumb up.
"Be careful next time, Lynn. I have Lily in my arms, you know." Luke replied with a frown, as Lily just giggled. He threw the football back at Lynn as she caught it.
"Don't sweat it, she doesn't seem to mind. But, whatever you want." Lynn responded with a shrug before she went back to her room.
Luke followed her until he was now in the kitchen, and saw Lori serving the pancakes to Leni, Luna and Luan. He put Lily in the high chair before he went to the fridge to take out the apple puree, and then he began to feed her. But then, Lori walked up to him.
"Hey, have you seen our parents?" The eldest sister said.
"No, why?" Luke asked as he gave Lily another spoon.
"It's ten in the morning and I think they should be up by now, can you check on them?"
Luke suddenly realized she was right, apparently they didn't get out of their room yet. Even though is the weekend, they still have to go to their jobs and they were still doing the best to keep supporting the family, no matter how difficult is to feed twelve children. He didn't want to disturb them, but he knew they're gonna be in trouble if they will be late for work.
"Alright, would you feed Lily for a while?" Luke asked a favor and he handed her Lily's favorite food.
Lori nodded and she took his place, before Luke exited the kitchen and headed towards a door in the right side of the living room. He turned the knob, but slowly opened it so he wouldn't make a sound, and then he took a peek.
He saw in the bed a couple of lumps under the blankets, but also he could hear both of them snoring. He got into the room before closing the door and walked towards the bed. When he was now standing next to it, he leaned forward and shook the lumps gently, until he stopped when he heard a groan.
"Mom… Dad…?" Luke muttered, a little worried by thinking he just interrupted their peaceful sleep.
After receiving another moan as an answer, the married couple sat up before cracking their eyes open and saw it was their son who just made a wake-up call.
"Oh… Hey son… What's wrong?" Lynn Sr. asked as he let out a big yawn.
"Lori asked me to check on you." Luke replied, rubbing the back of his head. "Since some of my sisters are already up, I guess they need you for something. Sorry if this is this was the bad time to wake you up."
"Oh, don't worry sweetie. We were unable to open our eyes until you came, so you did the right thing." Rita replied with a tired smile before she and her husband rose up from the bed. However, Luke began to notice that she and his father have bags under their eyes, their hair was disheveled and looked like they're trying to resist the desire of falling back to sleep. In other words, they looked worse.
"Hey, are you two feeling okay?" He showed a little hint of concern on his face.
"Well, of course. Why wouldn't we?" Lynn Sr. said with a forceful chuckle.
"It's not a big deal, we're just a little tired of our two shifts, but we'll get used to it sooner or later. Did you make coffee?" Rita asked while they put their robes on.
Luke nodded. "I'll make more if you want."
"That would be great, we could really need like five cups of coffee." Lynn Sr. said and then he got out of the bedroom, but let out another yawn.
"Mom, I know you are not okay, I can see that you have not slept enough and that's not very healthy. Wouldn't be better if you take a day off or at least let me find a job? I don't want to see you struggle every day!" Luke pleaded.
Rita placed her hands on his shoulders. "Luke, listen to me. I understand you're upset, but your only job is to take care of your siblings while we're gone. I know is Lori's task, but she needs your help since she still has a job to keep. Please, we'll be grateful if you keep doing what I'm asking you."
Luke bit his lower lip, he wanted to refuse and keep persuading, but the only thing that stops him is the fear of see her disappointed. He nodded with his his head, but still had the look of hesitation on his face.
"Thank you, sweetie." Rita said before she pecked her first son on his cheek. Now come on, we're gonna have a nice breakfast with the rest."
When his mother walked out of the door, Luke remained standing before he turned to the readers.
"I forgot to tell you a little detail. After I start living here, my parents are now working overtime to cover most of their money they spent for my new furniture. Not to mention to pay the bills and food for all of us. Every time when I ask them if they're okay with it and if they let me finding a job, I get the same answer. And to be honest, I'm not convinced, and I'm pretty sure you aren't either."
He crossed his arms and remained thoughtful for a moment.
"If I let this keep going, something wrong is gonna happen to my parents, I know! I think I've waited long enough for their approval; it's time I deal with this on my own hands. I'm gonna call for an emergency sibling meeting, they need to know what's going on."
"Luke, are you coming? Your breakfast is ready!" He heard Lori calling out.
"I hope we will find a way to help them." Luke sighed before he got out of his parents' bedroom.
It was now afternoon, Rita and Lynn Sr. have left for their jobs and left Luke and Lori in charge in the house, so he took the chance to call everyone to the meeting. Some of them started to wonder what it is since they don't have anything which would be very important to talk about, but also they were a bit upset because they almost started with their hobbies.
When they were all gathered in Lori's room, as Luke was standing in front of them with his arms crossed, the blond haired sister raised a shoe and banged it on the table to quiet the chatting the siblings were having.
"Alright everyone, this meeting is now in session. Our brother Luke has some urgent news he wants to tell us and he needs our undivided attention. Luke, you can start."
"Thank you Lori," He turned at his siblings, as he cleared his throat. "First of all, I apologize I interrupted your plans for this weekend, but the reason I asked for your presence is that we have a serious situation. I'm gonna ask you a question, have you noticed anything weird about our parents? Even a slightest detail?"
All of them looked at each other in confusion. However, Lincoln was in deep thought. "Now that you mentioned it, I noticed this morning they don't look good. I mean, when we were having breakfast, I saw my dad almost fainting on his cereal."
"Hey, you're right bro, it's like they had A Hard Day's Night." Luna replied with a frown of concern.
The sisters began to mutter at each other, clearly surprised because they never knew about that.
"Alright, next question, any one of you is aware that they come back to our house but around at dawn?"
Suddenly, Lynn gasped. "Hey, I just remembered! One time I went to the kitchen for a glass of water, but then I heard the front door opening. At first I thought it would be a burglar breaking in, and I was about to sound the alarm, but then I found out that it was mom and dad. Of course, they didn't see me because I was hiding in the dining room."
"Where they've been to come back so late, especially after midnight?" Luan asked.
"I don't know, for the moment I thought they were at a party or something like that because they looked very tired." Lynn answered with a shrug.
"That's why I call this meeting because there's something you should know about." Luke spoke, as the kids paid more attention. "Mom and dad are working overtime. Dad not only is working as a chef, but also as the dishwasher, even he has the night shift. And mom's now working as a waitress on the same restaurant dad's working, after her shift with the dentist."
Everyone gasped in shock at the revelation, as they started to imagine how much they're suffering to overwork for God knows how long.
"Wait, how do you know all of this?" Lana asked to her older brother.
"I was the only one who was told what they were doing, and they asked me to keep it as a secret. And trust me, I did not agree with that and I'm sorry I've been hiding the truth for all of you." Luke said, rubbing the back of his head.
"Hey, it's okay bro. You were only doing a favor for them." Luna tried to cheer him up with a pat on his shoulder
"I don't understand, why they're doing that without telling us before?" Leni said with great concern.
"I believe I have the theory, it's highly possible that they don't want us to be extremely worried they're risking their wellness for us. As for why, ever since our older brother is living with us, there's been a slight inflation with the bills of the electricity, gas, and water." Lisa explained stoically, before she took a calculator out of her pocket. "Which means, adding a 3.23 percent Luke is using them, plus the rent of our house and our hobbies, and multiplying the nourishments they're buying for thirteen people, our matriarch and patriarch have to pay for about… 3460 dollars per month."
Nobody made a comment after her calculations, mostly because they're not good with the math. Nevertheless, they understood the final part that shocked them to hear that amount.
"But… You think it's possible they can get that load of money?" Lincoln asked, trying to see if there's a little bit of hope.
Lisa tipped the calculator once again to find out how much money they're gonna make, but after seeing the results, she shook her head. "I'm afraid that the chances are very slim. Even though they would somehow manage to pay this month, it would be impossible they can make it for the next and onward."
Everyone began to jabber, how much they are worried about what is gonna happen in the future if their parents won't be able to pay the bills. The worst case they knew is getting evicted from their house and lose everything, even this has to be the only house that could fit a big family like the Louds.
"I can't help but feel like I'm responsible for this." Luke stated, looking at the ground with a shameful look. "If I would stay in my house instead moving in here, this wouldn't have happened. It's like I'm the one who brought a bad luck in this house."
His answer earned a few gasps from his siblings, not only because they could not believe that he would say something like that, but that he just reminded them the incident that they don't want to remember for the rest of their lives. They had to tell Luke about what they've done to Lincoln, every detail they had to confess, like how they kicked him out of the house, selling his furniture and forcing him to wear the squirrel suit because they thought it brings good luck. And as they feared, Luke was upset with them like they had no idea, not to mention very disappointed; also claiming that if he would've been with them before, he would stop them from doing such a thing to his little brother. But since that event was now in the past, he was willing to give them another chance to not make the same mistake again.
However, claiming himself to be the 'bad luck' doesn't sound like the true Luke would ever say that. Lori decided to change his mind, as she grabbed his shoulders to make him look at her face to face. She had the idea to slap him in the face, but she had to resist to not make a scene in front of the kids.
"Don't you ever say anything like that, Luke! If you think we hesitate to make a new room for you, then you are literally wrong!" She snapped, as the young man stared at her in surprise but remained speechless. "If mom and dad made a choice of working too hard is because they want you stay in this family! And honestly, we would do the same for you, believe it or not!"
Luke blinked a few times like he was asking himself if he heard what Lori just said. But it didn't take too long to realize that she had a point, and couldn't believe he was thinking himself as a burden instead of finding a solution.
He grasped his sister's hand and gently took off his shoulder, with a smile to let her know he was convinced.
"You're right. Sorry I was blaming myself for no reason, and that's not what I wanted to tell you. What I wanted to talk about is that we can't let our parents risking themselves, what they really need is some help and right now!" He slammed his fist into the palm of his hand.
"Yeah!" His brother and sisters yelled in agreement at the same time.
"I guess I could ask my boss if he would let me do the night shift." Lori was the first to make a suggestion, though she grew very unsure.
"I think there are some places where they hire some bands to play on stage, like clubs or something. Maybe I can do it with the help of my friends." Luna was next to volunteer.
"I can't believe I'm gonna say this, but I'll sell all my Ace Savvy's comics, even the limited edition on the internet." Lincoln added, but with sadness because he has to make a huge sacrifice.
And so the siblings began to claim what they're going to do in an effort to earn the money to cover the debts. But they didn't notice the shocking expression from his brother. The reason is they're thinking about looking for jobs or a way to earn some cash by selling their stuff. Even the kids like Lana and Lola have the same idea because one of them is a mechanic and plumbing expert and the other won so many pageants that she's thinking to go to the major leagues, even though that's for older women only, not to mention very professionals. And unbelievably, Lisa was thinking to work in a gas station, and she was supposed to be a person with great intellect to have that kind of profession. On top of that, they should have known that it's impossible to do something what the adults only can do.
That's not what he expected, nor what he wanted to hear.
The word was enough to silence the siblings, as they turned to their brother, stunned not only when he raised his voice, but that he's refusing the support they're offering. Luke held up his hand to request silence before his brother and sisters would start to argue.
"I'm sorry, I appreciate you're willing to help for the sake of our family, but unlike me and Lori, you are too young to finding a job, and there's no way you're gonna give up everything you worked too hard for your futures!" He turned at the blond haired sister. "You can't try to do the night shift because you have an important responsibility, and is taking care of the kids. What happens if I'm gone and you are not here to keep the house under control?"
Lori opened her mouth, but then she was unable to give him a straight answer after the realization hit her as if a nickel just hit her on the head. No doubt that it would happen the same way when she was by Lincoln and the sisters. She didn't want to hold back and tell Luke he shouldn't underestimate her, but the problem is he's very mature to change his mind.
"In fact, if all of you would leave the house, then who's gonna take care of Lily?"
The siblings suddenly realized they forgot one detail, as they turned to the baby sitting on the ground. The toddler had her lips quivering, about to cry with the fear that she would be left alone. They started to feel ashamed they were not aware how inconsiderate would be. Leni picked Lily into her arms and tried to calm her down, while apologizing to her and assuring they will not leave her, so as the rest of the siblings.
"Listen, there's only one way I have in mind. I shall be the one who gets a job. Not because I'm older than you all, but I have the possibility to find one which I'd get paid a lot."
"But what about us? We can't just stand while we're doing nothing about it!" Lynn argued.
Luke sighed and walked up to the athletic girl, before he placed his hand on her shoulder.
"I know how you feel, but I'm pretty sure mom and dad would never allow you guys trying to do so. In fact, they asked me to make sure all of you are okay." He turned to his brother and sisters. "They want you to keep having fun, doing what you usually do. So now I'm asking you to have fun."
Despite he was trying to reassure his siblings, he could still see the uneasy look on their faces, as they were feeling like they're not being helpful to deal with any problem. He hated to make them unhappy, this time when they were trying to do something what they think is right. He started to think twice, before he decided to give them a chance.
"Alright, maybe I was asking too much. How about this, the least you can do is keep an eye on mom and dad. Now, it doesn't mean that you should spy on them, but at this moment we need to make sure nothing bad happens to them. In fact, you have done so many crazy things for their own good, like making them believe they were doing well with their exercise, how you modified the living room as a spa for them, how you tried to get dad's old job back, and some other things you told me. I'm sure you guys will figure out what you have to do, but you should not tell them that I'm going to find a job, try to give them a little white lie, like I hang out with my friends, take a walk in the park, whatever you can come up. I know it's not okay to lie to them, but trust me, it's better they shouldn't know. So what do you think?"
Luckily, his suggestion seemed to convince his siblings, not too much, but at least enough to remove the frown. After a moment of pondering, they began to nod with their heads, meaning they're starting to think that sound like a good idea. While they still wanted to make money, they knew mom and dad's welfare are a high priority and that's what they should stay focused. However, they were pretty concerned Luke has to be the only one who gets a job and who knows how long is it gonna take until all invoices are already paid. But now that he asked them to trust him, they have no other choice but to hope.
"Alright, how does everyone agree with his plan?" Lori said with her shoe ready.
"Aye!" Everyone replied with their raised hands.
"Very well, then I call this meeting concluded!" She hit it with the table.
N/A: To be honest with you, I didn't have in mind to make the first chapter pretty short, but because I've been taking so long and I didn't want you to leave you guys impatient, I decided to cut this chapter into two parts, the next part is when Luke will attend a wrestling show and I can assure you you're gonna be surprised what's you will see.
Let's say that the next part is halfway done, so I think I will finish it before the end of October, MAYBE.
By the way, since I love Luna's references, I'm sure you noticed I made a quote which is based off The Beatles' song, A Hard Day's Night.
Now, there's something you should know, as you probably heard the news, a powerful earthquake shook Mexico, destroying some buildings and sadly hundreds of people didn't survive. I live there, but don't worry, I'm fine, my house is fine, and my family is fine, we are all fine. But that even hit us pretty hard that right now we're doing our best to move on, but also to remain calm.
What I'm trying to say is, there's a possibility my progress will take awhile because right now I don't have the inspiration to continue my stories, but that doesn't mean I'm gonna leave my stories abandoned, no way. I just need some time to recover until my motivation returns.
I'll see you guys later.