Disclaimer: I own no rights to DGM and I have no idea what Mother's real name is. So I went with Abigail. Why? No clue. Also, this is in response to chapter 206, so spoilers beware!


Regret

By Uniasus


Abigail went through most of her life knowing the one thing she regretted and trying to make up for it when she could.

Her husband had died and she turned into a wraith due to her grief. She didn't take care of her house, she didn't cook, and didn't take care of her son. Couldn't even look at him actually. Marian looked way too much like his dad it hurt.

Both of them probably would have died if it wasn't for Ba-Ba. The always happy boy had wandered into town looking for work and Abigail's neighbor had him help keep her house and farm in shape. Cooking, cleaning, plowing, planting, and pulling, Ba-Ba did it all with a smile on his face.

She didn't notice though. She stayed in bed, staring at the ceiling, eating only when Ba-Ba told her to open her mouth so she did and he stuck a spoon inside of it. Orville was dead, there's wasn't much of a reason to stay here. Abigail just wanted to fade away and join him.

It was a few months after her husband was buried that she finally saw the sun again. It hurt. She wasn't used to it and the light seared her eyes. She squeezed them shut and let Ba-Ba lead her to a puttering car, letting out a sigh of relief once she was in its dark anterior. It didn't cross her mind to question where she was going; having Ba-Ba take care of her was so natural at this point she didn't question it. Having someone tell you what to do meant you didn't have to think, and Abigail liked not thinking.

But she was forced to, after she noticed the ceiling she stared at most of the time was different.

"Ba-Ba," she rasped when he came in to feed her dinner, "Where are we?"

"In our new home~!" The black man was always over exuberant, but Abigail just let it wash over her. She didn't answer, just accepted it. Until eventually thoughts she didn't want to think crept into her head.

"Ba-Ba, why is this our new home?"

There was a pause in the rhythm of the spoon entering her mouth, and Abigail turned to look at her assistant. The young boy was trying to hold back tears. "I'm sorry Mother, I couldn't take care of the farm by myself. So we moved to something easier for me to do."

She blinked, taking the information in stride as an answer but not really paying attention to it. It was an answer and that was good enough for her. What the words meant didn't sink in until later, when Winter settled in and she turned to thoughts to distract her from the cold.

They had left her house, her home, Orville's house because Ba-Ba couldn't take care of it. Ba-Ba, who now that she thought of it, was a complete stranger and could have taken off with her valuables and left her die. Like she had wanted.

She looked out her window, at the ice frost in the corners. A complete stranger had taken care of her, her farm, and her child.

Her child!

Abigail threw the covers back and made her way to the door. It opened up into a large living area, were Ba-Ba was setting up a pot on the fire to start dinner. Frantically, she looked around for Marian. She hadn't seen the child in months. Not since the funeral, was that really last Spring?

"Mother?" Ba-Ba called out alarmed as she got down on her hands and knees to look under the table.

"Where's Marian?" Her child, her son, her one piece of Orville left!

"He's not here."

Abigail stood up and stared at the black man in front of her. He was looking at the floor.

"What do you mean?"

"I couldn't help him, take care of the farm, and help you. And I had to take care of the farm so we could eat, and he was so young so…so…Mr. Johnson gave him away for adoption. In July."

She collapsed onto the floor, too shocked for the simple task of pulling out a chair.

Her neighbor had given away her one-year-old son, and she hadn't noticed for almost half a year. What type of mother was she?

She sobbed. For hours, Ba-Ba's hands around her shoulders until the fire was only coke and he had to start it back up again before he could cook dinner so they could eat ate hours later than normal. Abigail watched him work, surprised at how young he was. 12? 13? And all alone without a family and taking care of a woman simply out of the goodness of his heart. She didn't deserve this.

She sobbed again. Into the crook of her elbow as for a few quite minutes while Ba-Ba paid attention to cooking.

"Here you are, Mother." He placed a bowl of stew in front of her.

"You know I'm not your mother, right Ba-Ba?"

The black hand shrugged. "I don't have one, so why can't you be my mother?"

"Because I suck at it."

"You can get better."

And so she did. No more moping, they worked as a team to care for the cemetery next door. It was a job that Ba-Ba had taken for the priest to earn money, but with the two of them they also had the time to plant a small field and grow crops. Ba-Ba stayed and Abigail tried to be a mother worth staying for. She failed with Marian, she wouldn't fail with another.

It was a second chance, a do over, and she would take it.

She didn't expect another.

When a tall man knocked on the door of her home one Sunday afternoon, Abigail just stared at him after opening the door. Tall, flaming red hair, a piercing blue eye. Even with the mask over one side of his face he looked so much like Orville this strange man could only Marian.

"I'm looking for a place to stay." He said around a cigarette.

"Of course, Marian. Come right in."

"How do you know my name?"

"I'm your mother, and you look so much like your late father."

Ba-Ba was a bit jealous, of course. But it soon passed. Marian did not grow up the way Abigail had wanted him too, hadn't turned into a man of kindness and joy. But he was alive and grown, working for the Church, and living more richly than Abigail would ever have the opportunity to do.

Marian would visit from time to time, check-in of a sorts, and she and Ba-Ba found themselves as his supporters for the Black Order. They couldn't offer money, but kept an eye out for akuma and gave shelter to finders and exorcist who came their way. She liked them.

She did not like Neah Walker.

Oh, his brother Mana was nice enough. But she had only met him once. It was Neah that Marian would bring from time to time, a young man – Noah – that had crazy plans that Abigail was sure would fail. But Marian was drawn in by Neah's charismatic ways. His smile was quite charming and he had her seeing things his way when he visited, but after he left Abigail would shake his spell off and worry for her first son. Ba-Ba of course being her second and favorite.

When Neah died, she didn't care much. It didn't effect her life but it shook Marian more deeply than she had expected. He was so convinced that Neah would come back some day and travelled the world to find him, sending Timcampy to watch Mana for some reason or another. Marian made her promise not to say anything about the 14th Noah to the Order and reluctantly she agreed.

Thirty years went by, till she was old and gray and Ba-Ba was once again forced to do most of the farm work. But then Marian came back, and with him a grandchild.

Well, sort of. Allen wasn't Marian's biologically, though she was sure he had bastard kids all around the world, but Allen was who he brought and he took care of. It was hilarious, watching Marian struggle with Allen, but boy also saddened her. He just sat on the bed, staring at nothing.

Marian threw fits all the time, and Abigail wanted to smack him. Did he think taking care of a child would be easy? But he wouldn't respond to that and so when she learned who Allen would grow up to be she used that to her advantage to manipulate Marian in feeding him and washing the sheets. She had a hard time doing it herself; not because she was old but because Allen's fate was heartbreaking and she knew if she got attached it would hurt later on.

Her first son of course knew this from the beginning and had no intention of getting close to the white haired boy. Ever. So it shocked her how upset he was when Marian told her Allen had changed, was now acting like Mana instead of a high strung, swearing little brat. Allen, like most children in need, and broken down walls with just his very presence and had settled into the hearts of everyone in the house.

Which was why Abigail thought of him as her first grandson, a grandson she only knew for a matter of months before Marian took him away and she stopped supporting the Black Order. She suspected that sometime in the future they would need a haven, and she was determined to provide it without any thought of a conflict of issue.

And when the time came, she racked up a second regret, one for which she did not have a great amount of time to remedy. For Allen's progress into the 14th Noah, into Neah, was due to be quick; she estimated five years or so and it had already been four. And when the white haired child slumped against her door, innocence behaving wildly she figured Allen was already gone.

"Neah?" Abigail asked, standing up and pushing her chair from the table.

But the eyes that looked back at her were the silver she remembered Allen having and as she watched they grew dark with self-haunting and worthlessness. She had added one more burden onto the teen and Abigail could already tell he was breaking. Losing.

Allen made to slip Ba-Ba's grasp and leave, but ended up collapsing into the man's arms instead. As Abigail watched Ba-Ba carry Allen to the spare bedroom she could only hope she would be able to at least help put Allen's mind at rest. Maybe help him stay, because as much as Marian wanted to see Neah, return she didn't.

Allen was the better person, the one she loved.


A/N: So yeah, I have no idea how excatly Ba-Ba and Mother met nor do I know if Mother and Cross are related. I made a lot of stuff up here simply to support one crystal clear moment in my mind after reading the newest chapter (where Mother calls Allen 'Neah') because it was angsty goodness. This was originally supposed to start at this fic's end and continue, but it ended up rather reversed and I'm not going to complain. There aren't a lot of Mother fics out there.

Then again, she did just show up in the manga...

Hope your lives are all going well! I'm super happy that now that my foot's healed I can play Ultimate Frisbee again. What's that? I injured it playing that game to begin with? What's your point?

And here's to waiting till August 4th (cuz if I remember, that's when the next raw chapter comes out!)