(AN: Another one? Good God, somebody stop me.

This stems from a kernel of an idea from my fic "On This Couch". It's also much darker and sadder than my previous two FOP offerings, just to warn you. I hope the characters are still in-character, though.

And I have finally seen some newer episodes with Poof! I hate to admit that I kinda like him. That Foop, though, oh lordy, I want to have that baby's love babies. Uh, wait, did I just say that?


Disclaimer: I've put in applications to be either Butch Hartman or Nickelodeon and thus own FOP, but so far I have yet to hear back from them, so at this moment I still don't own FOP. Please no suing, thank you!

I hope you enjoy! And please shoot me off a review, I love feedback (what writer doesn't?)!)

It was shaping up to be a beautiful, sunny day… of course, it always was in Fairy World.

It was still far too early for most of the young fairies to be up yet—children were not really known to be early risers, whatever species they were. Unless it was a Saturday and Saturday morning cartoons were involved, of course! But it wasn't a Saturday. It was a Thursday. So there was no real reason to be up this early… unless you were an adult.

I must really be an adult now, Poof mused to himself, floating over to the mailbox.

For the past couple of years, he had spent most of his time volunteering with the younger fairies. He enjoyed playing with them, horsing around, being irresponsible and yet responsible at the same time. And he enjoyed caring for them. Sure, it wasn't a paying job… but maybe whenever he finally got around to going to the Fairy Academy he'd study childcare. There was a huge need for it now, now that fairies were reproducing again. It was necessary, Jorgen Von Strangle had finally been forced to admit, what with so many fairies getting killed in freak accidents as the world spun more and more out of control.

Poof could remember when he had been about four or five years old, hearing about the death of a fairy while on earth. "But Mama," he had asked, "I thought fairies were immortal!"

"Just because we fairies are immortal doesn't mean we can't die," his mother had sighed. "It just means that we'll never get old. There's a big difference."

And, oh boy, did he realize it now.

Poof sighed and reached into the mailbox. Just three letters today. Wait, one wasn't a letter, one was—"My Elvis Quarterly, poof poof!" Poof exclaimed happily, hugging the magazine to him. Yes, so he was an Elvis nerd. Had been for as long as he could remember. And why the heck not? Elvis ROCKED! Well it's one for the money…

Poof quickly grabbed the other two letters and put them in front of the magazine. He could geek over Elvis later. The second letter was also for him, from one of Fairy World's largest daycare centers. Probably begging him to put in even more hours. The third…

Poof sighed. The third was for his father. And while there was no return address, he had been receiving enough of these letters to know exactly who it was from, and what it was about… but just to make absolutely certain, Poof turned the letter over. And, in letters that looked like they had been burned into the envelope, there was this oh-so-friendly message:


Three guess who that was from. Jorgen, Jorgen, or Jorgen?

Tucking the mail underneath his arm, Poof floated back inside, uneasiness mounting in his belly. Enough was enough. Someone had to do something. And the only one there who could do anything at that moment… was Poof.

Cosmo was sitting in the kitchen, a bowl of cereal in front of him, but he wasn't eating it. He was just staring at it listlessly, not even poking it with the spoon that was in his hand. Upon seeing his father in such a state—and not being a bit surprised at it—Poof gave an exasperated groan anyway. "Dad, you need to eat your cereal, it's getting all soggy and gross!"

"Well, I like it soggy and gross!" Cosmo snapped back defensively.

"Whatever," Poof muttered, rolling his eyes. "You got a letter."

"Ooh?" Cosmo perked up a little bit as Poof tossed the envelope on the table. "Who's it from?"

"No return address, but the note on the back kinda gives it away."

Cosmo flipped the envelope over. "Uh… got me. Who from?"

Poof sighed, rolling his eyes again. "Three guesses, the first two don't count, and the third is Jorgen."

"Uh… could you give me another hint?"

"Dad!" cried Poof in frustration. "The letter's from Jorgen! And we both know what it's about! Your fairy godparenting license expires in a week! If you don't get it renewed now you'll have to go through five years of training again!"

"Ohhhhh. So that's what it's about," said Cosmo, sounding strangely calm. Slowly and deliberately, he picked the envelope up from the table.

"Don't," warned Poof.

Cosmo just smiled unpleasantly at him and gingerly held the envelope with both hands, one on each far edge.

"Don't even think about it!"

Cosmo's hands began to slowly move from each other, the envelope stretching farther than it was meant to.

"I said don't!"


The envelope, and the letter inside, tore in two. Cosmo dropped both halves and calmly dusted off his hands, still smiling bitterly.

"What the poof do you think you're doing?" Poof yelled in frustration. "You're really just going to let all those thousands of years of successful godparenting just end like this? Jorgen thinks you're a great godfather! I know he yells at you all the time, but if he really thought you were hopeless he wouldn't keep trying to get you to come back! Especially not after T—"

"DON'T SAY THAT NAME!" Cosmo screeched, the anger almost enough to hide the tears that suddenly welled from his eyes… but not quite.

Poof flared up angrily, trying to blink away his own shocked, angry tears. That name still hit him, too. The godparenting world's most spectacular success… and most spectacular failure. "I can—I can say whatever the poof I want, poof poof!" he spat out.

"No you can't, not here! And if you're gonna be telling me what to do and what you can say then maybe you should just leave!"

"Fine! If you wanna spend the rest of your pathetic poofing life just staring at your soggy poofing cereal, then who the poof am I to stop you, poof poof poof!"

"That's right, I can do whatever the poof—I mean, whatever the heck I want, and no poofing Poof of mine is gonna tell me what to do!" Enraged, Cosmo grabbed the spoon from his soggy cereal and flung it at his son's head, for once in his life actually hitting his intended target.

"OUCH!" shrieked Poof.

"Now get out of here, bossy, yelling, know-it-all Poof, I don't need your help to stare at my cereal!"

"FINE!" Poof shrieked again, waving his wand and transporting him back outside by the mailbox with an "ANGRY POOF POOF".

"Poof, poof, poof," he muttered harshly, slumping down against the mailbox and wiping his tears away. He had a strange tic of saying his own name when he got emotional, whether those emotions were happiness, fear, or anger… right now it was anger, of course. He wasn't sure why he did it; his name was just the first thing out of his mouth. He suspected it actually had been the first thing out of his mouth, in fact; he had had the tic for as long as he could remember.

Yes, he was angry right now, angry at his stupid stubborn father. And he was also heartbroken. He had almost said that name. Timmy's.

Timmy Turner. Fairy World's greatest success. What other godchild had actually kept his fairies for nine straight years? Sure, there were hiccups, and near-catastrophes, and a lot of rule-breaking—Poof himself was physical proof of that. But he still managed to keep them until that horrible, horrible day of his eighteenth birthday.

Poof's parents had known it was coming. Well, Poof's mother, at least. And she had held his and Cosmo's hands that morning when they woke up before Timmy, had murmured to his sleeping form, "Happy birthday, Timmy… and goodbye. I love you."

Cosmo and seven-year-old Poof had exchanged confused glances, then directed them to Wanda, who only just looked at them sadly and squeezed their hands… as Da Rules book suddenly appeared, glowed, and plucked them from the only home Poof had ever known. Just like that. In an instant, it was done.

Poof would never forget his "big brother". Even though Timmy's memories had been completely erased. Nine years of his life were just erased from his memory and he hadn't a clue.

Except he did have a clue.

He had seemed successful enough. Good job, married, two kids. No humans suspected anything was wrong. And Cosmo and Wanda, keeping an eye on him while being the fairy godparents to his own children, never suspected anything either.

It had happened when his twins were twelve years old. He left the house late at night, going for a drive in the mountains.

The police ruled it an accident at first… until Timmy's newly widowed wife found the note he left behind for her.

"I've always felt that something's missing. And try as I might, I can never figure out or remember what it is. All I know is that it's something important, something wonderful, something that I don't want to have forgotten… but I have. And I can't live knowing that it's gone from me, whatever it is…"

Their biggest success. Their biggest failure.

Cosmo and Wanda had asked for a break from their godparenting duties after that.

They had a house in Fairy World, one that they only inhabited during their breaks, and they had stayed there for a few decades, trying to sort themselves out. Poof was there, too. He had been living there alone while his parents were godparenting, but now they were a family of three again.

And soon…

"Poof," Wanda had said to Poof one afternoon, holding Cosmo's hands and smiling gently, "your father and I have something important to ask you. …Would you like a little brother or sister?"

Poof had laughed noncommittally. "Duh, I love kids!" His eyes suddenly bulged. "Wait a minute, you don't mean that you're—"

"Not yet," Wanda reassured him. "We wanted to ask you first. Make sure you're okay with it."

"Although even if you weren't, we'd assert our parental authority and right to have babies and just have one anyway," Cosmo added cheerfully.


"Sorry. Forget I said that."

"Of course I'm okay with it!" cried Poof, the full implications now hitting him, and making him grin even more. "A little brother or sister, poof poof, that would be so awesome!"

"Yay!" cried Cosmo. "Now if you'll excuse us, your mother and I have to make the baby—"

"And that's my cue to exit!" Poof had immediately exclaimed, poofing himself to his room, barricading the door, and putting on his headphones and blaring his Elvis music so loudly that he couldn't hear anything else. He knew how babies were made, because he had stupidly and innocently asked his parents how when he had been about six years old. And Cosmo had told him. Not all of it—he was Cosmo, after all, and some of the more technical details tripped him up—but enough to completely scar Poof for life. And Wanda, with a sigh, had said, "Well, since you now know that much, you might as well know the rest," and had gently explained the entire baby-making, pregnancy, and birth process.


So Poof had holed up in his room for about an hour, paying attention only to his music… and then, finally, hesitatingly, he had taken off his headphones and nervously entered the hallway…

…and Cosmo (fully clothed, thank goodness) had swept him up in a huge hug, babbling with joy, "It worked, Poofy, it worked! You're gonna be a big brother!"

All three of them hugged and laughed, and even when they stopped hugging, they were still smiling, even Wanda as she told Poof that the next few hours were going to be very tough on her as the baby took half of her magic before being transferred to Cosmo, so it would probably be best for Poof if he just left the house for a few hours until her whole ordeal was done. Poof hadn't objected—his mother had told him a little bit about how grueling the mother's side of the pregnancy was, and he really had no desire to see his mother like that, so with one last hug, he poofed himself to the park, playing with other young fairies, grinning the entire time.

When he returned home a few hours later, his mother was dead.

Cosmo's brain had this annoying habit of not only forgetting the things that were important, but also remembering the things he dearly, dearly wished he could forget.

He couldn't remember the things they had said to each other when they realized they were going to have a second child. Oh sure, he could remember the happiness, the excited wondering about what this one would be like, at how good of a big brother their Poof was going to be. And he couldn't even remember the specifics when Wanda had begun to keel over in pain, the baby inside of her sucking up her magic.

But as he had watched her, his worry had grown. Why, though? She had gone through this before. This was what she had to do to make a baby. It needed magic to survive, after all. And it took half of it from her, and then it would take half from him when he was pregnant with it. They had gone through all this before with Poof.

So why was he feeling like he was forgetting something?

He had been terrified the last time, when Poof had taken half of Wanda's magic. He had been worried that… that something…

But he couldn't remember what it was.

There was nothing to worry about! It would hurt Wanda, but she'd be okay. She was strong, she was tough, she could handle it. She handled Poof. She'd handle their new baby as well. It would all be over in a few minutes.

She looked like she was in far more pain than the last time.

"W-Wanda?" Cosmo asked fearfully, finally unable to ignore the nagging feeling that something wasn't right.

"It… it wasn't like this last time," Wanda gasped in pain.

Cosmo pulled his legs closer to him, curling up into even more a ball than he had been.

"Something's wrong, isn't it?" he whispered.

"It's… it's so much more…" Wanda winced weakly, breathing heavily, drenched with sweat, and grasped her stomach. Cosmo couldn't ever remember seeing her in so much pain, not even when she had had Poof.

And suddenly her eyes widened, and she drew in her breath.

"Cosmo… it's twins…"

Cosmo blinked. Twins? That was awesome! Getting two at once! No wonder she was in more pain, with twice the babies it would be twice the pain and losing twice the magic…

Wait a minute.

One of the few math equations Cosmo understood was that two halves made a whole. A fairy baby took half of its mother's magic, in such a short amount of time that it only left her with the other half of her magic.

If there were twins, two babies, inside of her, and each one snatched half away in such a short amount of time…

A half plus a half meant a whole. Which meant they would take away the whole of Wanda's magic.

Which meant—

"If there's twins in there, then I will die. There's nothing I can do about it. That's just the way things are."

Before he knew it, Cosmo was clutching a weakening, fading Wanda in his arms and shouting at her, begging her, pleading her, sobbing and sobbing and sobbing. "Stop one of them! Stop both of them! Just don't let them kill you! Don't die, Wanda, please, please, don't die, don't leave me, I need you, I love you!"

Now he was clutching her with more intent. There was one thing and one thing only that mattered and that was keeping Wanda alive. And she needed magic to keep her alive, and if the babies were going to suck all hers up he'd give her some of his—if he knew how.

He grabbed her and concentrated. Concentrated harder than he'd ever concentrated in his life. Concentrated to somehow direct his flow of magic, his life energy, to her, so she could take it herself—

"Take it, take it, take all of it!" he begged her. "Just don't leave me!"

But she was growing weaker and weaker by the second.

"I…" Her voice rasped out less than a whisper, and getting out even that one syllable seemed to sap even more of what little energy she had left. One shaking finger touched Cosmo's arm. "…I'm sorry…"

"No, please!" he begged her, pulling her closer to him, concentrating even harder to try to save her, his face contorting with bitter tears.

Yes. He could remember every sickening detail of that. He could remember concentrating so hard, even though he was sobbing, his heart was breaking, to try to give her his own life flow. He could remember the way she felt in his arms as her life slowly ebbed out of her.

He could remember the final empty snap when he realized that all her magic was gone. That all her life was gone.

He could remember still holding her and sobbing, begging her to wake up, to be okay, even though some part of his subpar brain knew that she never, never would.

But what he could remember most of all was the sharp popping noise, like a balloon being punctured, that brought his face out of Wanda's shoulder just in time to see the two small floating balls of light before them crumble and disintegrate into dust.

An embryo could only survive the journey between parents if it was brought to the father's pouch within a minute.

And he had been longer than a minute.

After that… after that things were a blur to Cosmo. At some point he had torn out of the house, screaming for someone to help him… someone shouting at him, "Put some clothes on, man!" and Cosmo somehow managing to wave his wand and dress himself in an instant before yelling "NOW HELP ME!" But the neighbors could get nothing out of his blubbering, his screeching, his sobbing…

Nothing intelligible came out of his mouth until Poof poofed in, frantically making his way to his wailing father.

"Poof!" Cosmo screamed upon seeing him. "Poof, she's dead! It was twins and she's dead! And the twins are dead too! I didn't save them in time and I didn't save her either! They're dead, dead, dead, all of them!"

People had been shocked. Sympathetic. Comforting.

Big Daddy had tried to kill him.

Cosmo could only remember bits and pieces of that. There was pain, yes, so much pain, but Cosmo just sat there and took it, welcoming it. He deserved it. He deserved to die. So he was shocked when he woke up in a hospital bed, Dr. Rip Studwell telling him that he was going to make it, if Poof hadn't stopped Big Daddy in time he would have been a goner…

As he should have been.

He should have died.

Just like the twins.

Just like Wanda.

All because Cosmo was too stupid to save them.

No one else tried to kill him. Although Anti-Cosmo had wanted to. Oh, had he wanted to. He had glared at his counterpart with enraged, hollow, heartbroken eyes, eyes that Cosmo recognized as his own even though he had rarely looked at his reflection. "It's your fault she's dead," he said, his voice sounding mechanical and false, hardly matching the sorrow and anger in his eyes. "You didn't just kill your wife. You killed my wife, too. You know their lives were intertwined. As are ours. And that… and that is the only thing keeping me from strangling you to death right at this very instant."

Alone in his kitchen that day a year later, Cosmo slid off his chair, fell to the floor with a low thump, and pressed his face into his knees, sobbing freely.

If it weren't for him, Wanda would still be alive.

And what's worse… he had broken his promise to her. The promise she made him give her those few hours she had been pregnant with Poof… that if she was having twins, he'd save the babies and bring them to full term, raise them, care for them… even if that meant without her.

He hadn't saved Wanda… and he hadn't saved the twins, either.

All three of them were dead, and it was all his fault.

This house was empty and hollow now. This room, this house, Fairy World, the entire universe. And him. His body, his heart, his brain—wait, his brain had always been empty and hollow. But with Wanda there that had never seemed to matter to him. Now… now in his stupidity he let them die. And he had nobody left.


Not nobody…

"Poof?" Cosmo murmured feebly, looking up.

The house wasn't completely empty. Poof was there. Poof was there, getting him cereal, bringing him his mail, somehow stopping Big Daddy from completely beating the life out of him…

Cosmo awkwardly pushed himself off the floor, wiping tears from his eyes.


He saw the spoon that he had flung at his head laying on the floor. Picking it up, his lower lip quivered and the tears started flowing again, the hurtful words he had shouted at his son instantly coming back to his mind.

"Poof!" he cried, flying out of the kitchen, through the hallway, and out the front door. "Poof!"

"I'm right here, Dad," Poof muttered harshly, still sitting against the mailbox and sniffling back tears.

"I'm sorry I threw a spoon at you, Poof, I—" Cosmo suddenly stopped and stared at the spoon, now remembering the words Poof had said. Poof, bossy, controlling Poof, trying to tell him, his own father, what he could and couldn't do, he was just like Wanda!


"I should've thrown something… something softer!" His wand in his other hand, Cosmo quickly transformed the spoon into a pillow and raised it above his head. Poof flinched, instinctively, but as Cosmo continued to hold the pillow in the air without moving, Poof made no movements either, simply staring at Cosmo blankly, waiting to be hit.

Cosmo slowly lowered the pillow.

"No I shouldn't have, because I'm not actually mad at you, I'm mad at me."

Poof stretched out one arm. "Give me that pillow for a moment."

Confused, Cosmo handed it over. Poof took it… and immediately whacked Cosmo in the head.

"Ouch!" yelped Cosmo, although it didn't hurt him so much as startle him.

"There. That's for throwing a spoon at me." Poof handed the pillow back to Cosmo and turned his head away from him, pulling his knees up to his chest.

Cosmo looked at the pillow and sighed. He was still mad at himself… and now Poof was mad at him, too. Well, he had good reason to be, anyway. Cosmo had thrown a spoon at his head and yelled at him and killed his mother and siblings and

—and Poof was still there, in this house, taking care of Cosmo and even saving his life even when it was far past worth saving.

"I know I told you to leave," Cosmo blurted out. "You can leave if you want. You don't have to wait for me to yell at you like that. I mean, come on, it must look pretty lame for someone to be living with his parents… parent, now… at your age… whatever age that is again…" Cosmo's voice trailed off.

Poof sighed. "I'm fifty-two, Dad."

"Uh, yeah." Cosmo scratched his head. "I mean, when I was fifty-two, I was… no, wait, I lived with my mama until I was three hundred and eighty-six years old…"

"I don't wanna leave."

"You… you don't? Even though staying here makes you incredibly lame?"

Poof sighed again. "I don't really care what other people think of me, if they even do think that. And this is my home. I'm not gonna leave my home."

"But aren't you mad at me?"

"Duh." Poof shot Cosmo an icy glare. "You're being a total moron."

"What's new about that?" asked Cosmo.

"Precisely." Poof turned his head away again. "So no, I'm not gonna leave. I don't wanna leave." He was silent for a moment or two, but then looked back at Cosmo sternly. "Now will you please go see Jorgen and get your license renewed?"

"No way!" Cosmo cried defiantly, crossing his arms.

"Why not?"

"Because I can't!"

"You can too, you just go up there and say 'I need to get my license renewed'!"

"No, I mean I can't godparent anymore! I can't—" Cosmo's hands started to shake. He managed to keep a hold of his wand, but he dropped the pillow. "I can't do anything!" he wailed. "I can't do anything without—without W-W-Wanda!" Now he dropped his wand, too, unable to speak anymore through his sobs.

Poof quickly stood back up and floated over to his father, the irritation in his face vanishing. "Dad, look, don't say that," he said, trying to hug him.

"It's true!" cried Cosmo, pushing Poof away. "I can't do anything without her and I don't deserve to either! I deserve to be miserable like this for the rest of my life! I killed her!"

"Dad, for the last time, you did not…" Poof's voice broke and he wiped shaky tears from his eyes.

"See?" cried Cosmo, pointing at Poof's tears. "See? You know I killed her!"

"You did not kill her, Dad! It's not your fault what happened! Nobody blames you except you!"

"Big Daddy blames me. Anti-Cosmo blames me!"

"They've also always hated you!" Poof wiped more tears from his eyes.

"You're crying because you hate me. You hate me because I killed your mama!"

"I'm crying because I miss my mama!" Poof shrieked. "And I'm crying because you keep blaming yourself and just wasting your life away and I hate seeing you like this because you're my dad and I love you, poof poof! It's not your fault Mama died! Everyone knows that. Even Grandpa. Even Anti-Cosmo. That's just the way things go, and there was nothing you or anyone else could have done to save her!"

Cosmo sniffled, his eyes still wide and shaking with tears. "But I could have saved the twins," he whispered. "I should have saved the twins."

Poof sighed sadly, rubbing his eyes until it hurt to do so, yet he didn't stop. "But you didn't," he said slowly. "And you're not the first dad who didn't. And you won't be the last."

"Big Daddy did," Cosmo whimpered. "He's a better daddy than me."

"Don't say that, Dad," murmured Poof, finally bringing his hands away from his eyes to look at his father again. "Look, that's all in the past now, and we can't change it, so you just have to move on, alright? You can't spend the rest of your life just sitting around and feeling sorry for yourself. And you have a job. You have a job that you're good at, and if you don't act soon, you're gonna lose that forever, too!"

"But don't you get it, Poof?" Cosmo protested helplessly. "I can't do that! I can't do anything without Wanda! The only reason I was good at it was because she was there! I can't do it without her!"

"How would you know?" Poof cried, frustrated. "You haven't even tried! You haven't tried anything! Now get up there and get back to work and try! That's what Mama would want you to do, poof poof!"

"She'd want me to fail?" snapped Cosmo.

"You're not gonna fail! You're a great godfather! Practically every godkid you've ever had adored you! The records don't lie!"

"Oh yeah? Well what about Timmy?"

"Don't say that name!"

"I told you to not say that name first!"

Poof sighed deeply and grabbed Cosmo by the shoulders. "Dad, look. You made Timmy happy. Happier than he probably ever thought he would be before you and Mama came along. You can do that. Even without Mama, you can do that. I know it'll be tough, but I know you can do it."

"But…" Cosmo's lower lip quivered. "It just won't be the same, Poofy! It was always Cosmo and Wanda this, Cosmo and Wanda that! I can't be just Cosmo!"

"You have to try."

"Nothing's worth trying without Wanda."

Poof bit his lip for a moment. "What if you tried for me, then?"

Cosmo blinked in confusion and surprise.

"I need you to be my dad, Dad, not some temperamental child that I have to take care of! I know it's hard without Mama. I miss her just as much as you do! But we have to keep on going. I'm not saying we have to forget about Mama, or ever stop loving her. And I wish she was still here. But she's not, and we have to take care of ourselves. I'm taking care of myself with the volunteering I do. You can take care of yourself by godparenting again. Please, Dad…" Poof sighed helplessly. "If you won't do this for yourself, will you do this for me?"

Cosmo stared at Poof, unblinking, for a good ten seconds… and then his lower lip started quivering again.

"I… I… I'm a terrible father!" he wailed.

"No you're not," Poof said quickly. "Okay, yes, I'd be lying if I said you weren't being completely difficult this past year, but you have a very good excuse for that. And I forgive you! Now please… poof poof…" He sniffled through his words, a few tears welling up in his eyes again. "Please go back to being the great godfather and the great father that I know you are!"

Cosmo sniffled again, too, a tiny smile finally appearing on his face. "I… I will!" he resolved, flinging his arms around Poof in a tight hug. "I'll try for you, Poofy! I'll try!"

Poof also smiled through his tears, hugging his father back. "That's all I'm asking. Thank you."

They continued hugging each other for a few moments, still smiling, blinking back their tears, as the rays of the morning sun bathed them in warm, comforting light.

"Uuuhhhhhh… Poof?" Cosmo finally said.


"Can you take me to headquarters? I don't remember where it is."

Poof laughed and pulled away from the hug. "Yeah, I can do that. I'm sure Jorgen will be as thrilled as always to see you, poof poof!"

Cosmo blinked, confused. "Jorgen's at headquarters? Since when?"

Poof sighed, albeit good-naturedly.

And with a "FAMILY HEALING AND BONDING POOF POOF", the first steps in Cosmo's healing process began.