As the birthday sparkles faded away from around Elenie, the extra yellow sparkles which her parents had noticed as she aged up unfolded into a pair of faery wings and she began to hover above the ground.
Her parents and grandmother were shocked and, as Elenie played with the toys which had been left in the living room for her, they sat down to dinner to discuss the situation.
"I just don't understand" Dory started, "Neither of us are faeries so how has our daughter turned out to be one? How is that even possible? That's assuming she's really ours and there wasn't some weird mix-up at the hospital!"
Pete shook his head "I don't know how it could have happened, but there is faery blood in my mother's family, her mother's father was part faery and my grandfather was a dragon who met my grandmother through her faery relatives. You said your father had some strange ancestry connected to his Order in China, perhaps she just got the right combination of recessive genes for the fae strain in my family to show through. I'm sure she's our daughter though, I may not have inherited much from my ancestors but I can feel that she's ours!"
"Well, there's one thing we could do" Mira stated, "I know you took some DNA samples when she was born, if the two of you give me DNA samples from yourselves and we take a sample from Elenie now, I can run some analysis. I know I've retired but I can still get access to the labs, and if Pete brushes up on his genetics research between the two of us we should be able to spot something in the results."
Suiting actions to words, she quickly placed a call to her old department and obtained special permission to send some samples in for analysis. Since it was a private matter it wouldn't take priority and she'd have to pay but the family had enough money for that.
Having obtained permission, Mira went onto the computer to begin setting up the programmes she'd need to run suitable analysis and arranged to send the necessary samples off for processing that night. Pete meanwhile picked his little daughter up from where she'd been playing with a toy xylophone. Although he'd consented to Mira's suggestion in order to calm Dory's fears, he was certain that Elenie was theirs and that it was simply a case of his own ancestry showing through.
He raised his hand high above both of their heads saying "look out Elenie, there's a monster coming down from above to get you" and when she stared upwards wide-eyed, he swooped down and tickled her until she burst into delighted giggles.
It was however getting late and, against Elenie's protestations he took her upstairs, got her changed into her new nightwear and settled her into her cot.
Elenie wasn't happy at the idea of being left in her cot, and so Pete tucked a small teddy in the cot with her to keep her company and pulled out a baby book which he proceeded to read to her.
Soon enough, tiredness took hold of Elenie and she flopped back in her cot and was fast asleep shortly afterwards. Pete put the book away and tucked the bed covers in around her before tip-toeing out of the room so as not to wake her.
Despite the lab's warnings, they had actually been quite quiet and so it wasn't long before Mira could reassure her daughter that the DNA analysis showed that Elenie was their child, and that she had simply inherited some odd genes from Pete which seemed to be governing her faery traits. What she didn't tell Dory, having discussed it with Pete first, was that those genes had shown up as recessive in Elenie's initial DNA sample as a newborn (and also in Pete's DNA samples), but in her more recent sample they appeared to have changed slightly to become dominant.
In their private discussion Pete had promised to try and get in contact with his mother's family, to see if they could shed any light, but unfortunately his mother had never said anything about where the rest of her family lived and his uncle Bryce (who was the last of that generation) had passed on recently so it was likely to take Pete some time to track down any other members of the family who might be able to help.
Mira's discussion with Dory was cut short when the baby monitor went off, alerting the two of them that Elenie was awake and was most definitely wanting some attention!
Leaving Dory to mull over what she had said about her research, Mira went in and got Elenie out of her cot.
Once she had washed and dressed Elenie, she took her downstairs and used the food processor to make up some baby food.
She then stood there for a while watching her granddaughter and wondering at the way her wings seemed to phase through solid objects yet were already strong enough to hold her off the ground for a few minutes at a time.
As Elenie ate her first solid meal, Pete came down to join his wife and mother-in-law for breakfast. He had recently been promoted to trauma surgeon and his working hours were now during the night so he planned on spending as much of the daylight hours as possible with his family.
As Pete and Dory enjoyed a leisurely breakfast, Mira picked Elenie up from her chair and told them to enjoy each other's company for a while as she wanted a few hours with her granddaughter!
Admittedly, those few hours were in fact spent on teaching Elenie how to use the potty, not a job most people would relish, but Mira was glad to get some time with Elenie and also to relieve Dory and Pete of at least one job.
Once Elenie was finished on the potty and Mira had also had some time playing with her, she took her downstairs to the back yard where Pete and Dory had been tending the garden and the bees. As soon as Mira had put her down, Elenie began showing off her ability to fly to her parents.
Pete however was determined to give her a good head start in life and catching her as she flew, he told her it was time to learn to walk as well.
He spent much of the afternoon teaching her step by step while Mira decided that she wanted a record of her granddaughter's progress and began painting an image of the two of them.
Eventually of course Pete had to go to work and at that point Dory took over, holding out her arms and calling "come to mummy Elenie sweetie".
And as evening fell, she took Elenie back inside and gave her another lesson in potty training.
Once that was finished it was playtime, Elenie spent ages playing with the dollshouse by her cot and talking in baby talk to the dolls.
As evening drew on, Dory brought up a bottle of milk for her and Elenie reluctantly turned away from her game to drink it, yawning as she did so.
"Does that yawn mean you're ready for bed now sweetie?" laughed Dory. Elenie pouted despite her yawns but didn't protest when her mother got her ready for bed and read to her until she fell asleep.
As the days went on, Elenie learned from her parents rapidly, learning to talk from Dory while Pete watched from the rocking chair.
And as Pete read his medical journals, Dory would tell Elenie old stories about the weather and how it had disappeared from the world long ago...
- Jenny McKinley (Dyan's daughter) aged to toddler
- Allen Sperie-Sabo aged to teen
- Michael McKinley aged to young adult
- Sandy Clemetis aged to young adult, got a job in teaching and got married to Alexis Sperie-Harris, both of them taking the name Clemetis-Harris
- Niamara Clemetis-Sabo aged to adult
- Stacia Vamp-Roman and Menolly Clemetis aged to elders
- Yuki Sabo died of old age
- Sterling Harris-McKinley & Shadow Sperie-Fields got married and took the name Fields-McKinley
- Bryce & Stacia Vamp-Roman had a baby girl called Lenora and Bryce died of old age shortly afterwards
- Auburn & Torey Mitchell-Crist split up