Author's note: I think this is the longest I have ever gone without publishing. There are several reasons for this. Firstly, I have been exhausted, to the point where I was almost dead on my feet for much of the past couple of weeks. Between not sleeping well, going to bed late, and waking up early in the morning, I was lucky if I could focus on what I had to focus on, much less publishing a halfway decent chapter. I was also extremely depressed, due largely in part to relationship issues in real life. This murdered my creativity. Finally, I have also been extremely busy. The conclusion here is that I could not publish, but I vowed that I would today. I hope everyone can forgive me. Thanks for reading this and the chapter, and please review.
The next several months flew by in a torrent of trials, preparations for the new baby, and occasional couple time that Casey and Olivia managed to squeeze in. Now in the final month of her pregnancy, Casey was on strict maternity leave, and she was ordered to relax as much as possible. The attorney sighed as she sat on the edge of the bed. She hated being idle; it made her feel useless. She needed a purpose. She needed to work.
Sighing, the attorney stood up and walked into the closet, where Olivia had built the nursery. She examined the freshly painted walls. Casey smiled as everything pink stared back at her. She was surprised that Olivia had been able to remain in the nursery long enough to finish building and painting it, given how much she loathed the color pink. Casey shook her head, picking up a teddy bear with a pink tutu. Part of her was excited to have another baby, but the other part of her also worried. She hoped Samantha would get along with her baby sister, and that there was no sibling rivalry. At least, no serious sibling rivalry that would require keeping the children in separate ends of the house.
Having become lost in thought, Casey jumped a mile into the air when the baby monitor alerted her that Samantha was crying. Sighing, she shut the alarm off and walked out of the bedroom and into Samantha's room, which they had purposely made right next to theirs. Samantha had been stubborn about a big girl's room at first, but Casey had convinced her that fairies only visited when big girls were by themselves. How long that would hold, she wasn't sure. Samantha was only a year and a half, but she had the maturity and abilities of a child twice her age. Despite this, though, Casey desperately hoped it would stand for now. Entering her daughter's bedroom, Casey paused when she saw her daughter sitting in bed.
"Samantha," Casey murmured, sitting down beside her and pulling her daughter into her lap. "What's wrong, sweetheart?"
Samantha held up her teddy bear, which was half her size. "Holey," she answered.
Casey examined it, realizing that there was indeed a hole on the teddy bear's side. For the first time, she noticed that there was stuffing on the bed. "Honey, I can fix him, it's okay. Don't cry. I'll fix him," she promised, kissing the top of Samantha's head.
"Mommy?" Samantha asked.
"Yes, sweetheart?" Casey responded. Usually her daughter's questions were along the lines of 'Why is the sky blue' and 'Why is the grass green' and 'Why does Santa only come once', though in three year old speak of course. It was that type of question that she was expecting, so what Samantha actually asked completely shocked her.
"I hate baby," the little girl replied, gesturing to Casey's stomach.
So much for a lack of sibling rivalry. Casey sighed. "Sweetie, we've talked about this. What did we say?"
"Baby is good," Samantha responded, echoing Casey's lecture from the day before.
"Right. The baby is good. She's not going to hurt you. Momma and I will still play with you, honey. But sometimes, you'll have to play with the baby. We need your help, honey."
Samantha said nothing. She had turned her attention back to her broken teddy bear. "My bear," she said possessively. Casey realized that she thought all of her toys would be given to the new baby. She quickly set her straight.
"Yes. Your bear," she replied. "Baby will have her own bear." It was difficult sometimes for her to speak to Samantha, because she sometimes forgot that she was talking to a baby, and simplifying her language was somewhat difficult to the well articulated attorney.
"Okay, Mommy." Samantha hugged her. "Tootsie?"
Casey smiled. "I'll tell you what. If you eat all of your food, you can have a tootsie." Tootsie rolls were Samantha's favorite candy. While it wasn't wise to leave a baby with something they could choke on, Casey was able to administer the candy safely. She monitored her daughter closely when she was eating, and she only gave her a tootsie roll occasionally. It had been a nice alternative to Samantha chewing on furniture and toys during her teething phase.
After breakfast, Casey gave Samantha a tootsie roll. Once she was finished, she put on a fairy tale marathon, sitting her daughter in her special chair. It was a pink plastic chair decorated with the disney princesses. It was perfect for toddlers. As Casey started Sleeping Beauty, she sat down on the sofa, her daughter's chair directly in front of her. She grabbed the needle and thread and set to work sewing the teddy bear in her arms.
As she pulled the needle through the bear's side, she was momentarily distracted. The baby was kicking again. She was a very active child, even more so than Samantha had been. It wore Casey out at times, in addition to distracting her frequently. Once the teddy bear was finished, after a half hour of work, Casey placed it in her daughter's arms.
"Yay!" Samantha cheered, standing up to hug her. "Thank you, Mommy."
"You're welcome," Casey murmured. "Watch the movie, sweetheart." She helped Samantha sit down again, and re-claimed her own seat on the couch. By now, the fairies were arguing over what color the dress should be. Casey laid on her side, resting her head on one of the pillows. Her back was killing her, though that was nothing new. She kept one eye on her daughter and the other on the movie. After another hour, the movie ended and transitioned into Snow White. Casey had two princesses to keep an eye on.