My darling Mandy was sleeping soundly. I sank into the chair and let out the breath I'd been holding.
I had never understood mama until I'd had Jem. Then nothing would stop me from being worried or would keep me and him apart. 'A mother's love' mama had called it, no matter the time or distance we would never be apart in our hearts.
Mandy's brow furrowed and my back straightened and I reached for her hand. "It's okay, baby, mama's here." She relaxed under my ministrations, the same thing she used to do when she was in the hospital with her heart. Ironically it was the same hospital we were in now.
I must have fallen asleep because the next thing I know I'm being shaken awake with a "mama, are you awake?" Rubbing the sleep from my eyes I look up and see the doctor. "Is she going home then, doctor?"
The doctor nods and hands her some paperwork. "I need to call my husband, to get a ride home." I ask the nurse for the phone as I sign the last piece of paper. Mandy is wheeled out with crutches next to her.
"She'll need the chair for getting to the car, leave it out front, someone will collect it. After that she'll need to make use of the crutches." The nurse tells me as we wait for Roger and Jem. Mandy smiles as she sees them approach.
between them Roger and Jem get Mandy in the front seat and Jem and I sit in the back seat. I hold Jem's hand all throughout the journey. Mandy is gabbing to her father. She's excited to be going back through the stones.
"remember we don't have to take too much, grannie and granda have a place for us and clothes and the like. just take soap and other hygiene products." Roger was taking charge and already had our washcloths, toothbrushes, and toothpaste in a plastic baggie. He took something off of Jem, "If ye were to show that ye'd be arrested as a wizard and tried." I smiled as I knew he'd be telling him not to bring his Marvel comic books.
"Dad..." Mandy piped up, she was struggling to get her stuff together with a bad arm and on crutches.
"Mandy, you need to sit. Your father and I will get your toothbrush and toothpaste." I started to fuss Mandy as she sinks into a chair and Roger gets her things together. "Get bunny as well." I had given bunny to Mandy when she was born and she had taken to him just like I did. He had gotten her through many an operation aftermath, and I hoped he will get her through this as well. Roger handed me bunny and I gave him to Mandy, who teared up.
"Mama, I'm not three anymore..." Jem's eyes went wide and he gaped.
"So I can't bring my comic books but Mandy gets her stuffed bunny?!" I arch an eyebrow. "That's not fair." he crossed his arms and so did Roger, you really could see the resemblance straight away, how we ever thought there was a possibility he was Bonnet's I'll never know.
"Let's let them take one thing each, Mandy gets Bunny, and Jem gets his comic books so that it's fair." I suggested to my husband who relaxed a little. "And they could only have them in the cabin. If you and Jem needed to go to the town for anything then he leaves the comic books behind?" He arches an eyebrow at me then nods, he sees I'm talking sense, Jem is ecstatic and grabs his comic books. So it's off to 1797 we go...
"One of us will have to help Mandy to the stones..." Roger stares at me, I frown.
"Why not let her go through first with Jem? Then us?" We were all dressed in period clothing standing at the stones. Roger nods.
"Lad, ye and Mandy will go through first, wi you helping her. Can ye do that for us?" Jem nods and takes Mandy around the waist.
"Let's go, sis. Grandma and Grandpa are waiting on the other side..." I see Mandy light up, they both touch the stone and disappear.
I take Roger's hand, it's been a while but I'm ready to see my parents again. We reach out and touch the stones and I feel the familiar, familiar by now at least, pull of the stones.
There's a wagon on the other side, curious but we don't question it for very long, we hop on and drive the wagon to the ridge where we see my parents working away.
Here we go.