"No No No No!"
The chanting dismissal started as soon as the intelligent four-year-old spotted the curve of the slide from the backseat despite Robin doing everything she could think of to distract her adopted daughter during the drive.
"RoRo don't wanna." Brielle sobbed when Robin started unbuckling her car seat just so she could pull the sobbing younger girl into her arms to comfort her. For the moment proper car safety rules be dammed. "Don't want. Don't want. Don't want" The child cried still shaking her head in denial as her hands fisted against the front of Robin's shirt.
Robin once again wonder why oh why did she have to pick rock?
She had two other perfectly good choices why did she have to choose that one? Then Alice could have been the one getting the full force of their daughter's tears. This was even worse than the time she'd had foolishly let her fiancée and their daughter watch Lilo and Stitch last family movie night. How she'd thought the worst thing besides a curse was seeing both her soon to be wife and their daughter crying-was bad even if their tears ended up being happy ones was a mystery seeing as clearly this was fare worse than a curse.
"Anne no go pleas." The view of the water slide was closer than before making their destination clear. "I be good girl."
It only twisted the knife in deeper at the Turkish word for mommy that their little girl had picked up from the talks she'd had with Margot before the curse had been broken.
"You are our perfect girl Bri." Robin reassured rocking the crying girl as she cries into the front of her shirt.
Stupid rock stupid stupid rock.
Now all she needed was her voice to work so she could ask that they just turn around and go back home when the door opens across from her.
She looks out the passenger side window finding that the car had been pulled over onto a side road and from the tear tracks she's sporting as she climbs into the back seat with them Alice isn't much better than Robin when it comes to their daughter's tears.
"Bri sweetie you trust Anna and me, don't you?" Alice murmurs climbing into the backseat with them and closing the door yet unlike most other times Brielle didn't immediately climb into her lap for a hug instead choosing to stay curled up in Robin's arms.
"You know we wouldn't let anything bad hurt you right?" Alice keeps going Brielle nodes that she does keeping her head nestled in the crook of the archer's shoulder. "Then trust that we won't make you go anywhere near the water unless you chose to," Alice suggests reaching across the car seat to brush a few stray strands of her daughter's hair out of her still watery eyes. "Pinky promise." She adds holding out her pinky to show she was serious.
"Anne too?" both look to Robin at the question. "Anne too." Robin nodes linking their pinkies together in the promise.
They could understand her dislike of water considering her past traumas of her first 'family' trying to drown her every time she 'stepped out of line' mercifully for their daughter the law stepped in and soon after that so did Tilly and Margot and after the curse broke Alice and Robin took over to give the little girl the family she deserves.
This trip alone had been after months of talking and compromises between the new parents whenever their daughter had drifted off to sleep most times while being held by one or the other and a few times being sandwiched between them on the sofa, so they had to keep the talking to low whispers.
"I go wif you. No water." Both node "No water unless you say so." "archer's honor peanut." Alice and Robin promise talking over one another to reassure her. Brielle only nods leaning in to press a kiss against the three-way pink swear with Alice and Robin copying her before they broke it.
"We sings now?" the four-year-old hiccups now seeming to be much happier than she had been minutes earlier as Alice whips away the last of her tears with her thumb. "What song would you like to hear little cheetah?"
The nickname bringing a happy giggle from their daughter as she climbed from Robin's lap to Alice's.
Robin smiles at the memory of Tilly telling her or rather telling Margot about the first time she (Tilly) had met their little girl. The pair ending up walking around the zoo together to calm the upset younger girl staying the longest beside the 'spot kitties' before Tilly reluctantly took her back to her parents before she'd known just how cruel they were.
"No Tilly kitty." Brielle corrects in her best serious tone snuggling into Alice's arms. It's just normal now for the young girl to bounce from calling them by their actual to their cursed names that neither Alice or Robin notice anymore. "Tilly fast." She grins earning a ghost of a kiss against the top of her head from Alice. "You fast too Anna." Brielle promises seeing Robin's face fall a little at the compliment not that she didn't completely agree with it. Alice was if anything even faster thanks to her time as Tilly.
"That she is." Alice agrees "But what song do you want to hear sweetie?" Robin coaxes the question bringing a shy smile to Brielle's lips as she looked between the two before she answers. "The miles song?"
Robin and Alice share a grin over the top of the little girl's head.
"Only if you sing with us." At Robin's suggestion, Brielle shakes her head hiding her face against Alice's shoulder when her giggling shyness got the better of her. "No, you sings Anna."
"I'm driving baby girl." Robin says pressing a kiss against her daughter's head then maneuvering herself up into the front seat with just a bit of difficulty.
Brielle's pout continued in the backseat enough that Alice intervened "Come on Nobin sing with me." She coaxes.
"Don't call me that." Robin sighs half-hearted from the front seat drumming her fingers on the steering wheel as she pulls back out onto the road.
"Please Anna Nobin." Brielle tires again as she hands over the I-pod she'd fished out of her Anna's bag.
The car almost stops a second time at the soft-spoken words. Going by Alice's amused and surprised expression in the rearview mirror Robin guesses she hadn't suggested the bribe as the music started playing from the Bluetooth speaker.
Well really who could say no to that?
The song ends just as the car pulls into the empty parking lot taking a space in front of the fenced-in water park. As expected, Brielle claps happily as soon as it does giving each of her mom's a kiss as soon as Robin turns in her seat to face them once the car had been turned off.
"Fank you Anna. Frank you Tilly."
Robin and Alice have matching watery smiles as they step out of the car the later carrying their daughter around the side while Robin stops them for a hug before opening the trunk.
"Are you sure this place is open yet love?" Alice questions helping unpack the car as she eyes the empty lot and ghost-like appearance of the pool house.
Robin nodes sliding her sunglasses back on and helping Brielle with her own "I called Eric before we left he said it would be alright if we came in before actual hours….What….alright I said if he let us in before the crowd hit I'd help Max with his summer school homework and give him and Ar time alone this coming week." The huntress admits at her fiancée's raised eyebrow looks.
As if on cue the prince turned sailor pushed himself out of the pool. "Ladies." He greets giving them a slight bow as he shakes the water from his hair and reaches for the towel he'd left hanging on the fence.
"Rick." Robin nodes with a little smile at Brielle hiding behind Alice's legs yet giving the prince a shy wave in greeting.
"So, this is the towns newest little princess huh?"
Again, Brielle hides behind her moms at his approach and when he holds the gate open for the little family on the way into the pool.
Eric sent both Alice and Robin a reassuring smile as he turned his head sending a quick whistle over his shoulder "Jodi come here girl I have a new friend for you."
Brielle gasped when the wheat colored otterhound scrambles out of the pool at the command barely stopping to shake the water from her coat before bounding over to them. "Mommy I play wif pleas?" the younger girl asks inching closer to the dog as her eyes going up to look at Alice hopeful but stopping as soon as Alice's gaze met hers.
"Of course, you can play with her. Jods loves kids." Eric answers for her with a sideways grin when as soon as she was within splash range did his dog shake the remaining water from her coat.
Brielle still didn't move the last few inches her eyes flickering between the dog and Alice "It's alright peanut you can pet the puppy and you can two can play together as much as you want until we go home." Robin answers her arms already going around Alice's waist letting her fiancée hide her tears against her shoulder more spilling out at the delighted squeak their daughter made as she launched herself at the equally happy looking dog.
Jodie follows never leaving Brielle's side as the family of three chose several of the poolside lounge chairs.
"How about you Mommy and Jodie stay here and play while I go swim for a few laps." Robin offers as soon as they seem settled in.
Alice nodes in agreement at the idea knowing how much her archer enjoys the water as Robin strips to her swim suit. She would have gladly joined her but didn't want to leave their daughter alone longer than needed.
Eric like Jodie notices the flash of panic in Brielle's eyes as she watches her Anna walking over toward the water. "Hey. I promised she'll be alright." The sailor prince vows kneeling to the child's eye level even when she refuses to look up at him choosing instead to continue running her fingers in the dog's wet fur her eyes on her sandal-clad feet.
The royal takes a chance in moving to take a seat beside the young girl making sure to leave Jodie and more than enough space for her to feel comfortable between them before speaking again. "See that big chair over there next to the water?" She does lift her eyes long enough to look toward the lifeguard chair he's pointing at and node. "I'll be sitting right up there the whole time. I'll make sure nothing happens to your Mommy."
"Anna." Brielle corrects in a low puppy like growl "That's my Anna." She points toward Robin then over to Alice who'd momentarily left her once she'd remembered about the waterproof sunblock Robin hadn't put on yet. "That's my Tilly. They are both my new Mommies."
"My mistake." Eric backtracks with an amused smile at how much love is in the little girl's voice. "then I'll make sure nothing happens to your Anna or to your Tilly." Then adds "On my honor as a captain in my father's navy." When Brielle finally meets his eyes.
"You're a captain too? Like grandpa Nook?"
Eric chuckles at that "Something like that yes." He nodes holding out his hand to help the little princess to her feet. "So, you can come sit next to Alice and me while your Anna swims." He explains when she looks at his offered hand puzzled.
Brielle follows his gaze over to the poolside where Alice was now sitting with her legs dipped into the water splitting her focus between keeping an eye on her daughter and watching her love swim laps in the deeper end of the water.
"Hey hey it's alright." Eric calms when she shakes her head her breathing picking up as she hides her face in Jodie's drying fur when the dog sits up on guard.
"Hey cheetah deep breath for me alright. You're safe."
Eric concludes the pair had traded roles for a time seeing as now Alice was missing from her seat beside the water and Robin was kneeling in front of her little girl a towel around her. "Anna," Brielle whispers throwing her arms around her adoptive mother's neck. "Where's Tilly?" the younger girl asks looking toward the big chair Alice had been sitting beside while she'd been watching Robin swim.
But she wasn't there anymore. "Anna where Tilly?"
Brielle takes off toward the pool before the adults could answer her or catch her for that matter with Jodie hot on her heels. "Tilly? Tilly were are you?" The dog needing to race ahead to block the four-year old's with her body in order to keep her from falling on the wet pavement and from falling into the water all together while Brielle sobs for her Mommy when she had yet to catch sight of her in the too deep water.
"Cheetah got it." Eric agrees surprised at the younger girl's agility while he like Robin chase after the four-year-old just as Alice comes out of the bathhouse cursing under her breath at upsetting her daughter. She kneels accepting the kitten like slaps against her shoulder Brielle gives before throwing her arms around her.
"I'm sorry for scaring you love." Alice says not only to her daughter but to Robin as well as seeing the lingering worry in her eyes as well when she stops beside her family. "I lost my reason for a moment thinking you'd want an icy pop to calm down with."
"Red one." was all Brielle answers without letting go of her hold on Alice not even when she felt herself being lifted and carried over closer to the too deep water while her Anna went back into the concessions for her icy treat.