August 18, 2031
"Hey Mom, where's your old guitar?" Victoria asked.
"It's in the attic, why?" Meredith asked back, curiously. She took a moment to glance up from the papers that she was grading to look at Victoria.
"Oh, well I was wondering if Haley and I could use it. Haley wants me to teach her and it'd be helpful if we could have two," Victoria replied.
"Sure, go ahead and look," Meredith answered.
"Smells great in here," Victoria complimented, changing the subject.
"Thanks. I figured I could bake and while things were in the oven or water was boiling, I'd be able to get some grading done," Meredith said.
"That makes sense… But seriously, Mom, grading papers on a Saturday? Really?" Victoria asked.
"Well, they've got to be done before Monday," Meredith said back.
Victoria chuckled, "Hey, I wasn't the one that gave a test on summer reading this early into the year."
Meredith looked up at her daughter, letting out a small laugh, "Jesus. You sound like your father. Yeah, I get it. I dug my own personal hell," she answered, playfully.
"I'm just so darn witty," she bragged, jokingly.
Meredith chuckled, "Yeah. Well, go ahead and look for the guitar. I'm not saying you'll find anything. We've got so much crap up in the attic I don't even know if you'll be able to get through the door."
"We'll be fine, Mom," Victoria reassured, before hurrying back upstairs to Haley.
"What'd your Mom say?" Haley asked as Victoria returned to her room.
"She said it'd be fine. Come on," Victoria replied, going towards the attic, Haley following. They went all the way down the hallway, to the door that led to another set of stairs that led right into an attic. She opened the door, and scurried up the stairs with her cousin, before settling into the box-filled attic.
"Wow, that's a lot of stuff," Haley said, her eyes wide.
"Mom really wasn't kidding when she said that," Victoria added.
"Alright, you take the right side, I'll take the left," Haley said, as they decided to divide and conquer the mess. Victoria searched around, pushing boxes aside and almost tripping over old toys from when they were kids.
"I mean, you'd think a guitar would be easy to spot in here," Victoria started. She kicked a box to the side and then saw the guitar leaning against the backwall of the attic. "Ah! Found it!" She made her way towards the guitar but then stopped when she saw a box labeled "Twins' baby stuff." She kneeled down beside the box before beginning to go through it all.
"Oh my God. I think I found Flynn and I's baby stuff," Victoria smiled, gingerly opening the box.
"Hey what's this?" Haley asked, grabbing Victoria's attention.
"What?" Victoria asked, standing up and walking over to Haley's spot on the far left side of the attic. Haley had carefully opened up the brown box and had pulled out several knives, a couple of newspaper articles, and a file filled with research.
"Oh my God, are you serious? You found my mom and dad's old hunting equipment," Victoria exclaimed, upon seeing the objects that had come out of the box. Haley pulled out a few more things, looking them over.
"This is so cool. Man, I wish I parents would let us hunt, not that there's much to hunt anymore," Haley said.
"Then again that's a good thing. After the whole "First" thing freshmen year, I don't know if that's all that bad of a thing. It was fun while it lasted though…" Victoria chuckled.
"I second that. Dad and Mom had like, no lives back then and neither did you during the whole "First" thing," Haley replied.
"You know, our dads barely even had to a real junior year. Like, there wasn't that whole pressure for college and stuff. They were usually on the road with Grandpa," Victoria said.
"Yeah, Dad told me about that, even though he doesn't really like to talk about it much. My guess is he doesn't want to give us any ideas," Haley said, causing Victoria to laugh. "That's kind of crazy though. Then again, junior year would probably be a lot less hectic if we were out on the road hunting demons."
"Agreed," Victoria chuckled. "Well, it'd be a different kind of hectic!"
"Look at this," Haley said, kneeling next to another hunting box. She pulled out black composition book. The box had a couple of composition books, along with a yearbook, and some other memorabilia.
"What is it?" Victoria asked, rushing over to see what her cousin had found. This attic was getting even more interesting by the second.
"There are these composition notebooks. I think… I think they're diaries," Haley replied, aimlessly flipping through them.
"For who?" Victoria asked.
"I think they were your mom's," Haley replied. There was a silence where the two girls were trying to decide what exactly they wanted to do with the diaries. At that moment, the two girls turned to each other and said, "Let's read them!"
"Here, I think this one is the first," Haley said. Victoria reached for it but then paused.
"Oh wait, maybe you should read them aloud. You'll be proof reader because I really don't want to know any… details about… stuff," Victoria said.
"You think there's sex in it?" Haley asked, curiously.
"Well, they made me and my brothers, didn't they?" Victoria teased.
"Okay fine," Haley said chuckling, taking the composition notebook and turning it to the first page. The two girls sat down on top of a couple of boxes lined up next to each other and began to read.
"May 30, 1995. Dear Diary…" Haley began to read.
"I checked online. It said it would be on time…" Anna said, checking her watch.
"It always takes a little while to get down from the gate to the baggage claim, anyways," Jude reassured. "Or maybe she's already getting her bags. I mean, there are a lot of people over there. We could've missed her."
Anna scanned the crowd for the same dark brown, wavy locks as hers but again saw nothing.
"The flight said it got in on the board. I don't understand why-," Anna started.
"Anna!" they both heard someone exclaim. Jude and Anna turned towards the direction that they had heard the voice coming from, to see Anna's younger sister heading their way with a medium suitcase rolling behind her. "Sorry I'm late. I stopped to get a coffee and there was a huge line. You wouldn't even believe it!"
"Oh, it's fine! We weren't worried at all," Anna lied, causing Jude to chuckle. Anna rushed over to her sister, Jude following closely behind, as she pulled the girl into a hug. "It's so good to see you."
"You too. I'm finally back from Europe and here to say," the girl proclaimed.
"And only a train ride away from Pennsylvania," Anna said.
"Don't push your luck," the girl replied. Anna chuckled in response, before the two parted.
"Jude, good to see you," she said, standing up on her tiptoes to hug him.
"You too, Michaela," he answered.
"Thanks for letting me stay with you guys until school starts. The parents are in some small African country I can't pronounce working on the AIDS epidemic," Michaela started.
"Burkina Faso," Anna and Jude both said in unison, reminding Michaela of the country that the Peters parents were in.
"Right. You doctors…" she chuckled, shaking her head.
"But anyways, why don't we get to the car and back to Jude's. You hungry?" Anna asked, changing the subject.
"Starving, actually," Michaela answered.
"Well, you've come on just the right day. We're having a birthday party and knowing my giant family, we'll have tons of food," Jude added.
"Oh for who?" Michaela asked, like a dog who's ears perked up.
"Jude, actually," Anna said, proudly, squeezing his hand once.
"But, I thought our birthday was earlier this month," Michaela answered, confused.
"It's a long standing family tradition. A family friend of ours, Renee, we share a birthday month, so our parents always through us a joint birthday party in August," Jude explained.
"Ahh, gotcha. Well, this'll be interesting then," she said, as the three of them walked out of the airport together.
A few hours later, Meredith returned to the kitchen to check on her cooling cupcakes. After she finished grading a quarter of her tests, she turned her whole attention on getting ready for this afternoon's party. She was thankful that the weather permitted a cookout this afternoon. It was the perfect warm but breezy day to throw some stuff on the grill and set up a large table to eat outside on.
Meredith checked her cupcakes, making sure that they were all cool before icing them. She tore the tin foil off of the top of the mixing bowl that she had made the icing in before and went over to the cabinet drawers to get a butter knife out to ice them.
Right then, there was a knock on the door, interrupting her. Meredith, butter knife in hand, went to answer the door. She twisted the door knob, and the door swung open to reveal Bryan Gallagher at her doorstep.
He looked to Meredith, to the knife, and then back to her, "You know, if I were a demon, I don't think even a butter knife would kill me – even if it were silver."
She chuckled, rolling her eyes playfully, "Hi, Bryan. What brings you here?
"Can we talk?" he asked.
"Uh oh," Meredith said.
"What?" he asked.
"Usually when someone says 'can we talk'… are you breaking up with me?" Meredith joked.
Bryan laughed, "No. But it is… something that might be hard to hear. Do you mind if we sit down or something?"
"Uh… no, I don't," Meredith replied, hesitantly. She wondered what he was about to say. Was there another demon problem in town? She led him to the kitchen and had him sit down on one of the stools at the island counter of the kitchen while she began to ice the cupcakes. "So what's going on?"
"I'm thinking about telling the kids about hunting," he said, the words tumbling out of his mouth. "There. I said it. I think… think you and Dean were right all along."
"Well, what sparked this? I mean, you and Kitty have been intent on keeping it from them for the majority of their lives. Why now?" she asked, curiously, trying her best to help him. She wanted to make sure, before advising him how to go about it, that his intentions were well.
"Look, two years ago, it was hard to keep it from them, especially with Tyler with Victoria all the time. He started to get really suspicious. After they broke up, eventually he just dropped it, but he'll notice things from time to time. You know, a symbol on a necklace or he'll ask about my possession tattoo. The more he asks, the harder it gets to keep it from him. I mean, what if something happens? I've been presented with several opportunities to tell him about it, and if he gets attacked, I'll never be able to forgive myself. I mean, you guys know it. You're never really out of the life," Bryan explained. Meredith could tell that this was really eating away at him and the he was serious about telling his kids.
She nodded slowly, "That's why we told our kids about it. Would we've wished it had been later? Yes. Look, Bryan, I know it feels like its late, and I'll be honest. He'll probably act out when you tell him, but I think you're right. I think it will be for the best. Then, you'll have to stop worrying about keeping it from the both of them."
"Yeah…" Bryan trailed off.
Meredith sighed, picking up another cupcake and beginning to ice it, "I feel bad."
"Why?" Bryan asked.
"Because. You know, if you guys hadn't moved next to us then-," Meredith started. She hated that another family had to go through the same thing as hers, but couldn't help but think that the fact that they were next door neighbors affected that.
"Meredith, don't be silly. You and I both know that monsters are everywhere. If it hadn't been for you guys, I wouldn't have known what I was up against when the First came around. That or something else would've happened, making it impossible for Kitty and I to keep it from them," Bryan interjected, clarifying that it wasn't Meredith's family's fault at all.
"Yeah… But if you're going to do it, you should do it as soon as possible. I think they'll, at least in the long run, appreciate the truth. And if you want them to learn anything, well, you're all welcome to join us at the center," Meredith replied.
"Thank you," Bryan said.
"No problem," she shrugged, simply.
Bryan bit his lip. This was going to be even harder, especially since she was so darn nice! He hated that she was this damn nice. He took a deep breath before saying something else, "There's more."
Meredith looked up, puzzled, "What more could there be?"
"I may have said something to Victoria… a while back… that may have caused her and Tyler to break up," Bryan admitted, a guilty and remorseful look on his face.
"Bryan!" Meredith exclaimed, her eyes widening. "What did you say?!"
"I just asked her not to drag him into this. That's all. He had been asking a lot of questions and she had been lying… very well, might I add – but I was getting more and more afraid that he'd find out. At the point, it seemed like the most dangerous time to tell him and, I'm sorry, Meredith. I really am," Bryan confessed, his tone already begging for forgiveness.
She sighed, "I-, Bryan…"
"I know. I'm sorry," he said, sincerely.
Meredith frowned but thought it over. She wanted to kill him for doing that to her daughter, but he didn't technically break them up like her father did to Dean and her. She also knew, that as much as she wanted to be, she couldn't be mad at him because if she were in that position, she'd do the exact same thing, "It's okay. I mean, it's not okay okay, but…. But I understand. I wouldn't done the same thing if I were in your place."
"She never told you?" Bryan asked.
Meredith shook her head, "No. She never told any of us about the break up. Just that it was time to move on and they were growing apart – except for Haley. She probably told Haley."
"Oh. I never meant to-, to hurt her, you know?" Bryan asked.
Meredith nodded, "Yes. You know, my father did the same thing? Well, he took more drastic action, but my junior year of high school, he asked Dean to leave and lose contact until I was done with school and could "rationally" make a decision about what I wanted. So I understand… and there are far worse things you could've done, again, see exhibit A: My father."
"Us hunter parents are awful, aren't we?" he asked. Meredith, for once, in this conversation, smiled.
"Yeah, we really are," she chuckled.
He sighed, "I just don't know how to tell them."
Meredith took one good look at him before handing him a cupcake, "Here. It looks like you could use one. But after you're done, your payment for breaking my daughter's heart, is to help me with the rest of them."
"How many more do you have?" his eyes widened.
She looked back at him, letting out a small, "More than you can count."
The party was about to start and family began to trickle in to the house. Renee got out of the black, 1963 Comet Mercury, shutting the door behind her and beginning to walk towards the front door. She heard another door close and stopped.
"Stop," she said, without even turning around.
"Stop what?" John asked, innocently, locking the car up and heading up towards Renee.
"Stop looking at me like we just did something dirty," she giggled as he slipped an arm around, gently tickling her side.
"But we did just do something dirty. Chalk it up to birthday sex," John shrugged.
She rolled her eyes playfully, before stopping them so she could lay some rules down before they went into the house, "Look, nobody really knows that we're… I mean, I don't even think we know what we're doing yet so let's just… you know, cool it for now. Just for tonight. It won't kill you."
John clutched his heart dramatically and began coughing, "Actually, I think it will. Oh my God!"
"John," she groaned, chuckling.
"I'm kidding, babe," John shrugged.
"Yeah, whatever. And don't call me babe," she warned.
John shrugged again, innocently. She bit her lip as the two walked up to the porch of the Winchester house. She had this great, familiar feeling that she didn't want to go away. She was afraid that, too soon, it would, but pushed the thought to the back of her mind and reminded herself that they were only 'having fun' for now.
John pushed the door open to the house, leading Renee in. He reached for her hand but she avoided it. They agreed on cooling it for now.
"Mom, I'm home and I've got the birthday girl with me! Should I cover her eyes or something?" John asked.
"No, it's fine. People will be arriving any time soon, but Jude's back with Anna and her little sister… um… Michaela! That's her name! Go ahead outside. I'm fine, really," Meredith called from inside the kitchen.
"Sounds good," John said back. He and Renee exchanged glances, before heading towards the Winchester backyard where the majority of the family and friends awaited.
After John led Renee to the backyard, he came back into the kitchen to where his mom was. "Need any help?"
"Oh no, I'm fine. It's nice to see you and Renee spending time together. I'm glad the two of you can be friends after everything," Meredith started.
"Yeah, friends. Friends are good," John said back. She had no idea.
"Good, I'm glad. Go ahead. I'm almost done in here anyways," Meredith said. She wasn't going to say anything, but contrary to her son's ideas, she knew there was something going on between the two of them again. She wasn't blind and she recognized that look on her son's face. It was the one her husband wore way too often.
"Oh, okay. You sure?" John asked.
"I'm sure," Meredith answered. "Actually, you could take these pitchers out there." She handed her son the pitchers and he chuckled, taking them.
"I have a feeling we won't be thirsty today," he said, before taking them to the backyard. That's when it hit him. His mom hadn't asked any questions about him and Renee meaning she knew everything. Damn, the woman was good! He and Renee had had a good, yet rocky, first semester of attempting to make it work. It wasn't much of a distance, but it was a distance nonetheless and the both of them were trying to create new lives in their new surroundings – lives where they had to really make an effort to include each other.
By break, it was starting to hit them how hard this was going to be and decided to take a break. They figured, if it was meant to be, they'd find each other again. It was this summer, the summer before sophomore year began, where they were beginning to hang out again. Of course, after the third or fourth time, it was killing john to be "just friends" and things happened from there. Now he didn't even know what they were. He knew what he wanted them to be…
"Let me help you with those," a voice said.
John looked up to see Anna coming towards him, "Hey, Anna. Thanks, that'd be great."
"Does your mom need any more help?" Anna asked.
"No, I don't think so. With all these pitchers I took out? Mom apparently thinks I have four hands," John joked.
She chuckled, "Don't they all?"
"Yeah, because I'm pretty convinced they do. I have no idea how my mom managed to raise four kids – especially us," John joked.
Anna laughed, "Agreed. When I met Jude, I thought he was a handful. Then I met the rest of you."
"Hey, we're not that bad," John said.
"No, you guys are great. By the way, my sister's here. So be nice," Anna teased.
"I'm always nice," John smirked.
"UH uh. Keep little John far far away from Michaela," Anna warned, lightly.
"Hey! I resent that! Little?!" John exclaimed.
Anna laughed, "Someone needs to control that ego of yours."
"Don't worry. I'm kinda uh, well, Renee and I are-," John stammered.
"are you guys back together again?" Anna asked, her eyes widening with excitement.
"Shhh! No. I mean, yes… I don't know! We're…" John trailed off.
"You're at that phase where you're exes and don't know what you are. If you have more than just casual, it gets serious again which is scary because you broke up in the first place but if it's not, well, she's an ex. You still have feelings for her," Anna completed.
"Exactly!" John agreed. He shrugged. "I don't know. But anyways, I'll let you get back to Jude and uh, don't tell anyone we had this talk, okay?"
"What talk?" Anna asked innocently, causing John to smile.
"Dude, you're the best. If Jude doesn't marry you-," John said, his eyes widening as he covered his mouth. "Never mind. Forget I said that." Anna shot him a funny look but John was gone by the time she could ask.
Up in the attic, Victoria and Haley were finally finished reading all of Meredith's old journals.
"Oh my God. I can't believe my parents really went through all of that," Victoria said, perplexed as she set the last composition notebook down.
"I can't either. Jesus. They could make a movie out of your parents' story," Haley said back.
"Hah, I can actually see my dad's reaction right now if they turned their story into some chick flick. He'd probably have a heart attack!" Victoria laughed.
"Uncle Dean so would," Haley laughed.
"Hey, we should probably get back downstairs. We've been up here for a while now," Victoria said.
"Okay. Oh my God, I feel like I want to cry right now. You parents are just so in love…" Haley gushed.
"Honestly, I think I want to too," Victoria said. The girls exchanged laughter before hurrying back downstairs. Haley went to Victoria's room and Victoria went downstairs to see if her mom needed help setting up for the party today. Victoria hurried down the steps to see her mom washing her hands. "Need any help, Mom?"
"Nope, I'm fine. What were you and Haley doing up there for so long?" Meredith asked, casually.
"No reason…" Victoria started. She debated whether or not to tell her mom. What if she got mad? Ahhh but she couldn't contain it! "It's just, okay, so we kind of found your diaries… please don't be mad!"
Meredith chuckled, "I'm not mad at all. I… wow… I can't believe you found those!"
"It's just, you and dad went through a lot. I never knew all that. You guys are kind of amazing. Hah, Haley even said that you guys' love story could be some kind of romance film," Victoria said, laughing a little.
"I think your father would rather gauge his eyes out than be the star of a romance movie," Meredith replied.
"That's what I said!" Victoria said back.
"Well, it's sweet that you guys enjoyed it… I guess… wow, that's really weird. If it makes you feel better, Blake read my diaries and had the same reaction too," Meredith started.
"Aunt Blake? No way!" Victoria said.
"Yeah," Meredith nodded. "Hey, why don't you and Haley get ready for the party? People should be arriving any time soon."
"Yeah, alright, Mom," Victoria said, before going back upstairs to her room. She jogged up the stairs and down the hall to her room to find Haley sitting on the bed and checking her phone. "Hey, we should get ready for the party. Mom says people should start coming over any time soon."
"Yeah? Ooh, do you think I could borrow that purple sundress of yours?" Haley asked her cousin.
"Sure, but what should I wear?" Victoria asked back.
Meredith went back upstairs and heard the girls talking and laughing over something. She smiled to herself, reminiscing about the past. She could remember as if it were yesterday, when it was her and Molly deciding what to wear and giggling and gossiping over some boy at school.
"Hey, you," she heard a voice say as a pair of arms wrapped around her waist, causing her to jump.
"Dean, you scared the hell out of me!" she exclaimed, turning around to face him, wrapping her arms around his neck.
"Sorry, baby," he chuckled, leaned down to kiss her once. He pulled away a little before pulling her into another deeper, more passionate kiss. She kissed him back for a moment before giggling and pulling away.
"How was the garage?" she asked.
"Hey! I'm trying to kiss here," he replied, leaning in again, but Meredith pulled away.
"Wow, car grease really does you justice," she smirked, looking her handsome husband up and down.
"Ew, are you guys having a moment?" Flynn asked, passing by his parents and heading to his room. He wore some blue jeans and a white t-shirt, back from the garage with his father. "You know what? I'm just going to go. Hey Mom, I'm going to shower, but I promise I'll be down in time to capture the familial, hallmark moments of our family."
Meredith laughed, "Sounds like a plan, kiddo."
"Thanks for taking me to the garage, Dad," Flynn said.
"No problem. Next time we'll work on your car, okay?" Dean replied.
"Sure," Flynn answered, a goofy happy smile plastered on his face. "I'll be down in a second." He then went into his room, shutting the door.
"Wait for it," Meredith said. Dean and Meredith waited for what seemed like mere seconds before they heard it.
"Victoria, I need to shower! I've been at the garage all day and Mom needs me to take pictures," Flynn yelled.
"I'm almost done! Jesus. Haley and I have to do makeup," Victoria yelled back.
"Do it in your room!" Flynn argued.
"We only have one mirror," Victoria snapped.
"Ughh," Flynn said.
"Fine! Take the bathroom!" Victoria yelled, before the sound of the door slamming rang out.
"Well, they sure inherited our tempers," Dean said.
Meredith sighed, "Unfortunately."
"I'm going to go downstairs and change. Come watch?" Dean smirked.
Meredith laughed, rolling her eyes playfully, "You really know how to sell a girl." She took his hand and followed him downstairs to their room before the party officially begun.
Author's Note: Were those first and last scenes awfully familiar? Hm... I wonder where they're from. Sorry this wasn't published sooner. I am now getting going with this story, reading to take off! Let me know what you think :)