Thank you so much everyone for the reviews on the last chapter. I figured it was short and I have the time to update this now so why not? Before I do I feel the need to point out: I KNOW that the show is called Game of Thrones and that the book series is called A Song of Fire and Ice. I didn't mean to offend anyone by calling them both the same thing, I just happen to be on the first book that is called A Game of Thrones so I tend to use the title interchangeably. Anyway, you all seemed pretty excited to have the moms confront the principal so I tried really hard to strike a balance between Stef being well, Stef and Lena coming in and bringing her own Mama Bear protectiveness into this. Hope you enjoy the result.
The next two days were notably calmer than that Tuesday had been and even though Principal Sanchez still followed Callie a bit closer than she needed to, she soon realized that it would be wise to back off. The borderline seething phone call she had received from Stef the previous day was enough to send a warning to the woman that she had poked a bear. To be exact, she poked a bear cub and now it's mamas were out for blood. Beyond that there wasn't a time that Callie was alone, her siblings saw to that. Lena wasn't sure how Brandon made it happen, but he managed to get people in his circle of friends to give Callie a chance and to her great relief, the kids were very receptive when it came to really getting to know the girl who they just referred to prior to that day as Brandon's other sister. Principal Sanchez would walk by the two oldest Foster children and the look on Brandon's face told the older woman that she should prepare for quite the heated battle, because if Brandon was mad, then Stef…she didn't want to think about how angry she would be.
In truth, she should've been more concerned with Lena. Just because Lena was her employee, didn't mean she wasn't coming to the meeting with a fire lit in her belly. It had taken Stef all night to calm Lena down enough to get a few hours of sleep so they both knew this meeting wasn't going to be calm. As the final bell rang, Stef tapped her foot against the ground as she waited for Principal Sanchez to call Lena and her back into her office. Not five minutes later the front desk receptionist told Lena and Stef they could go ahead in. Stef held the door open for her wife before following her in and shutting the door behind them.
"Good afternoon ladies, please have a seat. Can I get you anything?" Stef shook her head and Lena politely said no. "Well then, I guess we can move onto the subject at hand. I assume Callie spoke to you about what happened?"
"You assume correctly, which brings me to my first point. I want the book you took from her returned to me, now." Stef was already practically foaming at the mouth and Lena tried to pull her back and remind her this couldn't be an all out assault, it had to be timed well.
"Stef, if I give you the book, you're just going to give it back to her."
"So what? What kind of country do you think we live in that gives you the right to worry about what my children read in my home. I paid for the book and I want it back."
"Ladies, please try and understand, I did this for her benefit. She needs to do something. Some school activity, a sport or a club, something that I can talk about in this report. I don't want to send in another lackluster one." Stef stood up from her chair and leaned forward.
"Just so we are clear, you realize that what just came out of your mouth is a threat and is basically blackmail? You might be able to scare my child into bending to your will, but I do not scare easily so change your tone or we are done here." Stef sat down and Principal Sanchez looked shocked, but she tried to hold it together.
"I want Callie to do well, same as you two. But she needs to branch out, make friends, show that she really wants to stay here." Lena beat Stef to it that time.
"We adopted her, she isn't going anywhere and just so we are clear, the idle threats stop now."
"Lena I…" Lena waved her hand, silencing the woman. "No, I'm not done talking. You may be my boss, but you abused your authority and took it out on one of my children and so right now, I don't care that you sign my paycheck because I'm not leaving this office until you understand just how inappropriate your actions were. You are tasked with writing a progress report, that's it. You have NO RIGHT to take something from my child and tell her she has to jump through hoops just to earn a truthful report, that is extortion and I will not have it in this school and I sure as hell will not let it touch my children."
"Lena we've played hardball with students before."
"Yes hardball. We've called in their parents and drawn very clear lines in the sand, making sure everyone understands what is being asked of the child and the family. We don't use scare tactics on a minor. You knew that Stef and I would come to her defense so you decided to do as you pleased when we weren't around and that is so beyond unprofessional."
"Lena I put some pressure on her and took a book away from her, it's not as though I held a gun to her head." Stef tagged in on that one and was on her feet again. "Well, that's probably a good thing because she's already had real guns held to her head before so she really doesn't need you to add to that." The principal paled a little bit, having forgotten that Callie had experienced a trauma filled youth before finding the Fosters.
"If you felt like she wasn't meeting your criteria then you should have called me or Stef and said so. We would have sat down with her and found something for her do, but instead you decided to scare her with the threat of going back to juvie. What gave you the idea that this wasn't going to get back to us?" Lena questioned and waited for an answer she knew would never really come.
"You were banking on Callie keeping this to herself and that pisses me off more than almost everything else. You bullied her into silence and thank god her brother was around to see it because otherwise you might have gotten away with it." Sanchez opened her mouth to speak, but Lena wasn't even close to done.
"If you ever, EVER pull that stunt with any of my children, or any child at this school again I will go to the school board so fast your head will spin and if you still have a job by the end of that I will go screaming and beating my chest to every news outlet in California. And before you scoff and think that they won't listen to me, remember that my daughter's name made the news not long ago because she put her rapist behind bars so as much as I don't want to pull that string, I will and I will pull it so hard that your name won't survive the mud I will drag it through. Do I make myself clear?"
"Abundantly, but Lena this hardly calls for idle threats." Lena laughed and shook her head.
"You started this entire conversation with idle threats. What I just told you is a promise. And just so we don't have any more power trips the same goes for if you try and use this situation to try and fire me. I have every right to protect what is mine and these kids are MINE and if you hoped that I valued my job over them then you are sorely mistaken. If you start pulling this shit again with me my complaint to the school board will be just as swift and the lawsuit that follows will bankrupt you. Tell me does any of that sound like an idle threat, because if so I will say it again." Stef couldn't stop the smile that spread across her face as she watched her wife tear her boss's argument to pieces. Principal Sanchez was trying to carefully think of her next words and as she did Stef's phone buzzed. When she checked the message she smiled and stood up from her seat going over to the door and opening it to see Callie standing on the other side of it.
"Mrs. Foster, Callie doesn't need to be in this meeting." Stef shook her head and put her hand on Callie's shoulder. "You are absolutely right, she doesn't, but it is her right. Besides she has something to show you and this you'll want to see. Go ahead honey."
Callie stepped up to Principal Sanchez's desk and handed the woman a flyer for the upcoming swim meet.
"I talked to Coach Stevens and she made a deal with me. She's letting me try out for next years swim team. This last meet isn't a regulated one, it's just for practice and it's a way to end the season. Now, as I am sure you are aware, the school is losing their star anchor swimmer this year when Rachel graduates and they need a new one. If I can beat her best time the spot is mine. Now forgive me if I am wrong, but I'm pretty sure having a spot on the varsity swim team counts as an afterschool activity does it not?" Callie had a determined look on her face that couldn't conceal the smirk that played across her lips and Stef's face matched it. Principal Sanchez was left speechless and Callie took that as her cue to leave.
"The meet is next Friday at 3:30, I trust you'll be there ma'am. Wouldn't want you to miss anything." Callie started to leave the room when Stef called her to stay.
"Callie wait." Stef walked over to Principal Sanchez's desk and grabbed Callie's book without any further pleading for the book to be given back to her. She tossed it to Callie who caught it with ease. "Go wait with your brothers and tell Mariana to stop flirting with Zac or we'll be late for dinner with grandma." Callie left the room and Stef turned back to the woman sitting behind her desk who seemed to have had the fight beaten out of her by each member of the Foster family.
"Well, I do believe that Callie just settled that, so I think we are done here." Stef grabbed her keys out of her pocket and before she reached for the door handle she turned around.
"One last thing. Do you know why Lena and I bought her that book?" Principal Sanchez shook her head no.
"She's lived through unspeakable traumas for most of her life. The real world was big, mean, scary and hurtful. Her reality was trying to slowly kill her. Her only escape was books. She could read a book and escape reality for a few moments everyday. Fiction allowed her to pretend to be somewhere else, to be someone else because being stuck in her life was painful and it was destroying her. So the next time you think about ripping a book out of the hands of any child, think to yourself what is it that you are robbing them of?" With that Stef left the room and after a moment of silence Lena followed her out, leaving her boss to lick her wounds.
Once everyone piled into the cars to go home Stef looked into the backseat to catch Callie texting away on her phone.
"Who you talking to back there sweets?"
"Tell her we'll be there soon, we just got held up." Callie shook her head. "That's not what we are texting about."
"What are you talking about then?"
"Grandma's apartment has a pool and if I'm going to beat Rachel's time, I'm going to need to use it."
Hopefully this met with everyone's approval. I need to update a few other stories, but I wanted to get this ball rolling.