"I don't want to go to California," Summer said. Off Seth's look, she sighed, "I mean, I wouldn't mind, Cohen, but I wouldn't make you go there.
"I like moving," Seth whispered. He did, he loved it. He loved being unattached, loved being able to take Summer and Jacy wherever, whenever.
"I know you do. I do too! But it's time to grow up." She sighed, and hugged him tighter. "I love you, Cohen, but if we don't stop, I'll leave."
He stared at her, and she looked back, determined. He didn't doubt that for a second. Summer would shove him in front of a train in a second if it meant saving her daughter, and he wouldn't have it any other way.
Although, hopefully, that particular situation wouldn't ever come up.
"We're the gypsy Cohens, Summer. We can't be the Gypsy Cohens if we transplant to Suburbia."
"Yeah, but no one calls us that, whiner."
"Yeah, well. They should."
"We can be cool Cohens somewhere else."
He smiled ruefully, and she touched her stomach absentmindedly. "We don't have to go NOW, right? The lease goes for another six months."
"Okay," she said. "But soon, okay? Four people is too many for here."
Seth thought something was wrong as soon as he walked into the apartment the next day, but he couldn't pinpoint what it was. He checked on Jacy, who was on the couch, then called for Summer.
She didn't answer.
He called again, then started to get nervous, as he tried to imagine any scenario that would require Summer to leave Jacy alone in the apartment, and then he heard a strange sound from their bedroom. His heart sank as he remembered what it was.
And sure enough, there was Summer as he walked in, slumped against the wall, viciously tearing apart a book, her eyes glazed over. She was mumbling nonsense to herself, and didn't register it when he called her name softly, but when he touched her shoulder her eyes flashed angrily, and she kicked out, hard.
He gently tugged the shredded book out of her fists, and wrapped his arms around her, and then she started to scream. She pushed, and kicked, and threw her head back, slamming it into his chin. She didn't say words, but she screamed out everything she had in her, and he held her fast.
Then she drooped.
She blinked twice, and gasped for air, leaning against him, confused.
She looked at Seth, who felt like crying himself, and then at the mess on the floor, and her eyes grew. "Oh. Oh god. Oh god, where's Jacy?" Summer said, and made a croaking noise as she tried to catch her breath.
"Sleeping, on the couch."
"Oh no. Oh no, Cohen! NO!" She latched onto him, and screamed again into his shirt. "What time is it?"
"It was...four..." She wanted to cry.
"Summer, how many?"
"This is the first one, I swear. I haven't had any in six years."
They were still both on the floor, and Seth adjusted his arms around Summer. "I don't think Jacy saw."
Then she cried.
That night was one of the worst in Seth's recent memory. Summer tried to keep away from Jacy, and Jacy was confused by that, and Seth, though he felt horrible about it, couldn't stand to have Jacy be alone with Summer.
Jacy was annoyed with both of them, which culminated in a screaming fit, that Seth and Summer joined in on, and Jacy ended up crying in her room. So did Summer, Seth suspected. He just stayed in the living room, which was silent for the first time in weeks.
This was shitty. Besically, that was it. Shit.
Then Jacy came out of her room, sat in Seth's lap as if nothing had happened, and shoved a book into his hands. "Read it, okay?" she said. "I'm bored."
He did, automatically, and she mouthed the words along with him. When he finished, she didn't move, but laid her head against his chest like Summer did when she was about to fall asleep.
"What's wrong with Mommy?"
Seth didn't answer.
"Daddy, what's the matter with Mommy?"
Seth looked at Jacy, and tried to think of any way he could tell her that Summer wasn't right. Summer was different. He couldn't let Summer be alone with her daughter. He was afraid.
"Mommy doesn't feel good, Jacy. It'll be fine. Don't worry."
Jacy nodded, and sat silently for all of twelve seconds.
"Read it again, Daddy. I wanna hear it again.
Seth walked to Jacy's crib singing her favorite song, which was basically Seth singing "Jacy Jacy Jacy" over and over to different tunes. She jumped up and down in her crib, cranky and hungry.
"Jaaaaaacy!" Seth sang, as the big finish.
Seth lifted her, and threw her in the air. She laughed once, and then tried to pull off his ear, yelling what, in pre-verbal, over-exuberant, feral child speak, obviously meant, "Boob. Bring me boob. Why are we still here, and where is the boob?"
Seth put Jacy on the floor, and she raced off in her search for Summer, but stopped short when she caught sight of the balloons and presents on the floor. Seth caught her in his arms, and hugged her, but she shoved him away. Seth was old news, she saw him everyday. Balloons were new and exciting!
"Happy first birthday, Jacy-girl. You're a little peach."
Rage blackouts, whee. Drama!