Hidden 18 days ago Post by ArynMae20
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As the sunlight broke through her curtains and filled the room, Sydney knew it was time to get up. Time to start the day. As she lazily peeled the blankets off of herself and let her bare feet hit the wooden floor, she sat there for a moment. She had another doctor's appointment later today and she'd once again be coming up with an excuse for her sister. She didn't want it to be like this, and there was many times in the last several weeks she nearly told her. It just didn't seem like the timing was right and although her fiance told her that she shouldn't be having to keep this from her, the two of them had been through everything together and there is no reason why she would hate her just because of the clear differences in her situation. She knew she could, she just couldn't help but feeling as though that would be a slap to the face and a major sting in a wound that was finally healing. She'd already been through so much and Sydney felt for her, deeply. So she changed up some things and tried her best to hide it.

After throwing on a baggy sweatshirt of Kaleb's, Sydney redid her hair into a messy bun and emerged from her bedroom and down the hall into the kitchen where she could smell breakfast being made. 8 am sharp every Sunday morning, there he was. Gosh how she loved that man. Sitting on a stool at the center island was Flo, enjoying her plate that Kaleb had already prepared for her. She casually strolled over to where he stood and wrapped her arms around him, to which he turned around and kissed her softly. “Morning beautiful,” he said, flipping his french toast. It was Sydney's favorite and the two had been doing this for almost as long as they've been together but it was by far one of her favorite traditions. With all the craziness of their move and unpacking and stuff, she wasn't sure if they'd find the time but they always did.

Sydney grinned and greeted him before turning to her sister and joining her on the island. “and how are we this morning?!” She said happily, rubbing her sister's protruding belly. She was much further along and only had a matter of 5 or 6 weeks left before her due date. Sydney was incredibly excited to be an aunt and knew that her sister would be such an amazing mom. She'd taken care of her when she was younger and so this was only fitting for her. She'd hoped for better circumstances but was glad to see her sister taking it in stride.

“So, me and Kaleb are going to meet his cousin that's in town for lunch today, she hasn't seen much of the city and they haven't hung out since they were kids. So we'll be gone for a few hours this morning/afternoon but should be back before 5.” She said, looking at Kaleb with that look in her eye. “Right, Babe?” Kaleb immediately caught on and nodded. “Yeah, I haven't seen Katie in so long, it'll be nice to catch up. I think she just finished her provisions for law school. So what better time to celebrate!” He said, playing along with her lie. He didn't have many cousins and the only ones he did have were boys. Flo didn't know that though, or so they hoped at least.

Sydney nodded and smiled in relief that he went along with it again. She knew that he knew she was referring to their appointment but if she said anything about an appointment she'd be all over it. It was better this way. Or was it?
Hidden 17 days ago 17 days ago Post by Loreliee
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Florence

"That will do," Florence murmured to herself, putting on one of her many black tops, that she had found in the H&M 'basics' section. Unlike many people, she didn't believe in the saying 'dress to impress'. Why should she spend hours and hours per day shopping for clothes online and ordering them, just to send them back? Not to mention the ordeal of having to try on ridiculously overpriced jeans in countless shops without finding a single pair that actually fit. No, she preferred to keep a written list of the essential clothes she needed to buy for the upcoming season and other than that reused her belongings for ages. And as a mother-to-be her newest purchases consisted of over sized sweaters, tops and dresses. And possibly Chino pants. They were comfy and therefore great. Something only Florence would wear because of its practicality, as they were not in-fashion at the moment, or at least not for women. Today she opted for a camouflage colored ones and slid into a pair of trainers, before taking a quick look in the mirror. Oh wow, I look pregnant. As if in 'I-am-going-to-give-birth-any-minute-pregnant'.

Descending the stairs, she could already perceive the smell of toast and something sweet. French toast. Kaleb is already preparing breakfast. Since Sydney's decision to move in, the house dynamics had changed. In the past Florence used to eat yesterday's remnants in the morning, but now that Kaleb basically lived here, he somehow felt responsible to cook for everybody. Despite having a full time job! However, as far as Florence could tell, he treated her sister well and Sydney seemed to be genuinely happy with him. And as much as Florence hated to admit it, her pregnancy did restrain her in her everyday activities. She was grateful to have the two around, even if she couldn't always express it... properly.

"Good morning Kaleb, how are you?" Florence gave him a hint of a smile and opened the fridge to find something to eat, but Kaleb was faster. "I am great, how are you? You should definitely try out my newest creation of French toast with strawberries and maple syrup", he said and pulled one of the chairs in front of the island back. Florence couldn't think of an excuse why she should refuse his offer and cook her own food without putting off her sister's fiance. And she didn't want to waste the precious French toasts. They surely didn't look too bad. "Thanks", she said and sat down. "I mean, really. You shouldn't have woken up so early just to 'feed' everybody."

In the same moment Florence saw Sydney coming down the stairs and greeting her boyfriend, making it impossible for him to think of a response. As always, she radiated a confidence and ease, that Flo had never felt in her life. Not after the incident.

"I am glad that you are finally taking some time off and meeting your err cousin - Katie, right?" Florence grinned, but at the same time folded her arms before her body. "Guys, you don't have to be so - agitated. I am completely fine on my own, trust me. Live your lives. Don't assume that you have to be here all the time. Really."
Both of them behaved strangely and Florence knew when Sydney tried to hide something from her. Most likely the fact, that spending time with Florence was - less exciting than expected? For Florence this was the most plausible explanation and she didn't even feel offended. Why would she? She could understand Sydney more than anyone else. Florence was supposed to look after Sydney and not the other way around. Of course Sydney needed some time for herself.
Hidden 16 days ago Post by ArynMae20
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Sydney shook her head. “No, no. We aren't agitated at all by any means! I was just letting you know, in case you had other plans. Of course you are capable, but just because you're the oldest doesn't mean I don't worry about you.” She stated, her eyes sincere. “You're carrying my niece or Nephew in there! An Auntie has got to know.” She smirked. She exchanged a few glances with Kaleb while she ate. She could tell that her sister was catching on to their change in the last few weeks but she didn't think she knew what it really meant for them. Everytime she looked at her she had to swallow the guilt. She didn't entirely know why she was making this so complicated but it's just grown into more and more as the weeks past now shes just not sure.

It wasn't long before breakfast was over and cleaned up. Sydney and Kaleb were out the door within the hour and both took a breath as they sat in his beloved pickup. “We should really consider telling her soon, it's causing you so much unneeded stress and that's not good for the two of you,” he said softly, his hand landing on her slowly growing baby bump. “I want this to be a happy time for us, babe.”He said, his eyes locked on hers.

Sydney knew how much sense he was making, and she agreed but it just wasn't that simple. “I know babe, I'll tell her soon. I'm not ready yet.” She admitted, her eyes wondering. Kaleb simply nodded and held her hand as he drove them to the clinic.

Upon arrival, they signed in and eventually were called back. Today was a big day, they were having an ultrasound and they couldn't wait to see their little bean. The heartbeat made their hearts melt to puddles and there was nothing sweeter.

The doctor checked all the necessary areas and determined the baby was very healthy and was right in track- growth wise. They were so excited. The doctor looked up at them, and smiled back. “Would you like to know the gender?” Kaleb and Sydney exchanged a glance and knew they wanted to know. Unlike her sister, she wasn't patient enough to wait it out. They grinned, and both nodded. “Yes, Please.” The doctor nodded and looked at the screen. “Very well, You're having a Daughter. Congratulations!” The parents to be were overwhelmed with joy and couldn't believe they were going to be having a girl. Tears welled in their eyes as they shared a sweet kiss. “I'll see you back at 30 weeks, Remember to take it easy.” The doctor said, printing and handing them their set of sonogram pictures. “Thank you so much, Dr. Kelston.” They said in unison as they strolled out of the room and back out to their vehicle. Their minds were racing, but in the best possible way.

“We're having a baby girl!” Kaleb said as they sat in the truck in awe. Sydney adored seeing her love so in love with having a daughter. She knew he'd make the most amazing father. “Emrie Jade?” She said aloud, and Kaleb nodded with tears in his eyes. They'd had this name since they first found out. A tribute to two people that meant the most to them. Emily was Sydney's Grandma and Jade was Kaleb’s mother's middle name. It felt perfect. Sydney was over the moon excited and they sat for a while, went out to lunch and then finally arrived back at the apartment a few hours after they had left. Their faces still said it all but Sydney couldn't help it this time. She was so excited and grateful.

“Flo? You home? We're back!” She called out, taking her stuff off and walking toward the living room where she could hear the TV.
Hidden 15 days ago 15 days ago Post by Loreliee
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Florence

"And I worry about you Sydney. Stay safe while you are out and about." Florence looked at her sister with warm, but tired eyes. She hadn't had a good night's sleep for the last few days and felt even more sensitive than usual. Deep inside she knew that Sydney behaved strangely, however she didn't want to force her sister to confess something she might not even want to hear. Sydney's intentions were pure and her whole lifestyle filled with positivity. Surely she wouldn't keep a painful secret, would she? Deciding that it was best to not ask any further, she wished them a great day outside and then resumed eating her French toast.

As soon as they had left the building, Florence got up from her chair and put the dirty plates inside the dishwasher. It was part of her every day routine to check whether the house needed any more cleaning, but this wasn't the case today. Sydney and Kaleb made sure to clean and fix everything before Florence could even recognize a single dirty spot. According to them, she should rest more and forget about the daily chores as she was ready to give birth any minute. As if it was that easy. Florence might not be the keenest house keeper, but she was far from being a passive person. Whatever needed to be done she would tackle immediately and if there wasn't anything she would come up with a task.

Two hours later and Florence was busy painting her future baby's room in soft shades of yellow and green. Yes, painting. The cashier hadn't actually believed her when she had told him about her plans to design the room herself, which had made her even more determined to do it. Her pregnancy shouldn't completely constrain her freedom, right? And it was the smallest room in the house. As easy as winking. To distract herself from her neighbour's lawn mowing, she turned the TV on. Sydney and her fiance wouldn't be back in the next few hours and Florence already felt more relaxed. They will love my depiction of the Sahara.
Hidden 15 days ago Post by ArynMae20
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Sydney found her way towards Flo’s voice and was a little surprised when she came across her heavily pregnant and painting. She wanted to tell her what a terrible idea that was but she knew that independence was in her blood. All the other women in their family were mostly the same way. So she doesn't suppose that she could blame her and especially given her situation she imagined it was just another way of trying to control an unpredictable situation. She wouldn't fault her for that and of course trusted that she was grown and could make her own choices and wouldn't intentionally put herself or her unborn baby at risk.

Sydney smiled as her eyes scanned the smaller room. “Wow, Flo...” she said, in awe of how amazing it had turned out. “This looks really amazing, I can't believe you made this. I guess it's clear to see who got what genes.” She joked, smirking at her big sister.

The entire way home she was so excited but also kept thinking of how much she wanted to tell her sister. Keeping this from her has been the most exhausting thing she's ever done and it was starting to get the best of her. She wanted to wait until she had her baby before springing such a thing on her. She knew her sister, but she wasn't exactly sure how she would react to her secret. She was getting so tired of guessing, and Kaleb has been telling her to spill the beans, sooner rather than later. He'd wanted her to know right away because that's just the person he is. She loved him for that.

She could tell her sister was starting to wonder and so she figured she might give in. Play it by ear.

She sighed, her watering eyes betraying her as she tried to remain strong. “I have to tell you something..”
Hidden 11 days ago Post by Loreliee
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Florence

When Sydney entered the room, Florence held her breath for a second. What would her little sister say? Would she be angry? This, of course, didn't apply to Sydney's behavior. Sydney's frown on her face lasted for merely a second, before she replaced it with a wide, genuine smile and praised her work. Sydney, unlike everybody else, understood her. She didn't even question her motives, she simply knew why Florence had to do what she had to do. Her opinion alone mattered.

"I am glad you're liking it. I wouldn't say that it is completely finished, but even I am pleased with the result so far. Having painted this entire house has done wonders to my handicraft skills, but they are nowhere near as great as your talents, trust me," she laughed. Realizing that her sister looked somehow worried, Florence placed down her paintbrush and thrust the pain bucket aside.
"Syd, you know you can...", before she had the chance to finish her sentence, Sydney already interrupted her with the infamous words "I have to tell you something." If Florence knew one thing for sure, then it was that this innocent sentence could turn your life upside down. In a negative way. She could tell you a thing or two about it. However, in this moment, Florence repressed her past-time memories and focused her eyes on her sister. She knew her too well and how much Syd needed her right now. Despite her complicated upbringing, Syd was not the type of girl to be constantly worried. Something was completely wrong.

"Oh no no sweetheart, let's sit down," Florence said and tried to calm her down, while looking at the children's chairs next to her newly painted sun. Then, more hesitantly, she put an arm around her crying sister, guiding her to the seats. "Whatever it is, you don't have to worry. We can cope with anything. We are stronger than anybody else, remember? Strong as tigers, that is what we used to say, right?"

Hidden 11 days ago Post by ArynMae20
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The two of them just knew each other and in times like these, when she wasn’t sure if she could say the words. They could just communicate with looks and that was so special to her while she gathered herself. She had never felt so nervous to tell someone something. It was a foreign feeling to her. She sat down next to her sister and thought for a minute. Strong like tigers. She remembered. It had helped her feel grounded in a situation that was falling apart. She smiled, and quickly gathered herself together. Her strong spirit was back and she was ready, or ready as she could be.

“So, I know we don’t keep secrets, but before I tell you just know how hard it has been for me to keep this in. I didn’t want to add to your problems, you’re finally getting your feet on the ground and the last thing i wanted to do was throw you off, but it’s getting to the point where I can’t hide it and I don’t want to. It’s a blessing and I shouldn’t have hid it in the first place, but, anyways...” She trailed off, she knew she’d just have to spit it out before her nerves kicked up again. “I’m nearly 21 weeks pregnant with my baby. We went to the doctors this morning, not Kaleb’s cousins. We found out it’s a healthy baby girl.” She suddenly felt so much lighter, no matter how things went, she wasn’t keeping anything from her anymore and she didn’t realize until this moment how much it was affecting her.

It was at this precise time that Kaleb decided to pop in. He could sense the tension and figured it could only mean one thing. He smiled, trying to break the silence. “Everything ok?”
Hidden 9 days ago Post by Loreliee
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Florence

Florence placed her hands on her sisters leg, trying to calm her down while she gathered her thoughts. Sydney's behavior frightened, but at the same time intrigued her. What caused her sister to become so quiet? Syd belonged to the liveliest people she knew, if not the even the most vivid. Whenever she approached Florence with a new message, she could barely keep it to herself. She didn't have to. Florence knew all of her little secrets. At least she had thought she did.

And then something unexpected happened. Well, it didn't really happen. It had already been that way, Florence had just never noticed it. Sydney was pregnant. 21 weeks pregnant. With a girl.

Oh my God. The strange phone call from the gynecologist yesterday, who had inquired about Sydney's well-being. Sydney'sudden interest in education books. Her constant meetings. It all made perfect sense now.

Florence didn't know how to feel. In fact, she didn't feel anything at all. All the time she had presumed that her sister had started all these new activities for her. To prepare herself for the role of a future aunt. How could she have been so blind? It dawned on her, that her sisters sudden love for hoodies didn't have anything to do with the new boyfriend style. Hell, even her taste in music had changed. Sydney had listened to Mozart while eating cheese toast with chocolate cream. It had all been so obvious.

She didn't react when Kaleb entered the room. She didn't realize his presence in that second. Her mind was racing, but she hadn't moved an inch since the revelation. Slowly, she straightened herself and posed the only question she could think of: "Are you happy?"

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Sydney knew her sister well and she often times used that for her own motives, however she really has not been able to gauge what her sister would think of this, or how she would react to the news. As soon as she told her though she could see the wheels turning in her head, she was putting all the pieces together and then beginning to wonder how she couldn’t have figured it out herself, sooner. The thing about it was though, if Sydney tried hard enough she could conceal any secret. Her complicated upbringing is one of those things, so if you don’t know something about her, she made sure it stayed that way until she decided otherwise.

Kaleb’s eyes were on Sydney’s and she quickly glanced at him while her sister was deep in thought. Her next remark caught her a bit by surprise. She couldn’t tell if she was genuinely asking, or if she was being pissy? With as pregnant as she was Sydney couldn’t blame her. She sighed heavily, her hands resting in her lap. Without pause, she took Kaleb’s hand in hers and grinned. “We are..” She said, the couple sharing a heartfelt glance. She had always been careful and mindful not to rub things in and make her sister jealous but this was just a moment she had to have with the father of their future daughter.

Kaleb shrugged a bit afterwards, “For the record, I wanted to tell you the week after we found out, but someone would not let me.” He defended, half joking. “Hey!” Sydney playfully hit her boyfriend. “Thanks for the backup, Babe...”

Sydney felt so much lighter and free. She looked at her sister again, “Flo, I’m sorry we didn’t tell you sooner. I just didn’t know how, you’ve been through a lot the last few years and I just thought this might be a slap in the face. In the interest of total honesty, I actually didn’t want to tell you until after the baby was here, because I didn’t want to send you into early labor, but then today we saw her again, and found out she was a girl, and agreed on her name and I just couldn’t not run home and tell you everything.” She confessed. “Her name is going to be Emire Jade, After Our Grandma and Her soon to be Grandma.” She beamed with pride, looking at Kaleb once again. What a day.
Hidden 6 days ago 6 days ago Post by Loreliee
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Florence

Emire Jade, her new name, great. They had already chosen a name for her without asking about Flo's opinion and they had every right to. After all it was their child. Her sister had answered her question in all honesty, no doubts left. And Kaleb was madly in love with her. How romantic. He should better not dare to break her sister's heart, otherwise... let's just hope there would be no otherwise.

"Congratulations, Sydney. I am sure you will be a great mom," Florence said calmly without averting her eyes, that were fixed on Kaleb. "Could you leave us alone for a second? Or two? Preferably longer."
She didn't wait for his consent, but turned her head back to her younger sister. "I just haven't had the chance to talk to you in ages. I honestly don't even remember the last time we were alone together. And by that I mean more than five minutes. Whenever I try to talk to you Kaleb will join the conversation. He is like your shadow." Breathing out, Florence realized the harshness in her voice. Maybe she should have started it off differently, but now there was no going back.
"Sometimes I even wonder whether you are still being able to function without him. He does everything for you. And by everything I mean everything. Your laundry, the daily house cleaning, the quick trip to the grocery store to buy you your favorite chocolate... Don't get me wrong. I don't begrudge you your happiness. I am just trying to be here for you, make sure you're all right. I just don't want you to get hurt."

Ouch. Florence looked down at her hand, seeing a small drop of blood forming within her palm. She wiped it off at her trousers. Apprehensively, she made sure that Syd hadn't seen it. Flo had no intentions to hurt herself, but it was a convenient way to keep her raging emotions under control. She preferred to appear angry, yet restrained. Inside, she felt infuriated. After all these years, her little sister forgot about all her promises to never rely on a guy.
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Sydney always had an understanding of her sister, why she did the things she did, why certain things triggered her, ect. This whole issue with Kaleb caught her a little by surprise, she didn’t really get why she was being so hostile. Did she think that the two of them would be alone for the rest of their lives? Sydney surely didn’t want that for herself or her future daughter so as things stood, she was beyond happy and grateful for Kaleb and how attentive he always has been, but even more so now that she had gotten pregnant. She didn’t see it the same way her sister did. He did do almost everything, but never once has she ever asked him to, it was all in his free will because that’s just the type of person he was and over the last few weeks, she thought that was pretty obvious but I guess, just like she had first thought, Flo’s own history was clearly making her bias. It was unfortunate, but she wasn’t letting it get to her. Why would she? She was happy.

“Flo....I’m not exactly sure where all this has come from but I’ll let it go considering how sensitive of a time you’re having. Kaleb has been nothing but good to both of us, despite you being cold and reserved to him. I understand that you are being protective of me but can’t you see how happy he’s made me? How deeply we love each other? Could I be like you and think of all the alternatives and ruin our moment? Yes, 100%, but that is not anywhere near healthy. I’m sorry you don’t see him that way, and feel like he is taking me away from you. You haven’t said anything to me about this up until now so don’t take it out on him now. This is clearly about us. Despite your attitude towards him he still respects you, maybe you could learn a thing or two about that.” She finally finished, turning around to exit the room. “Grandma always told us that no, we should never rely on a man, but if we should be as lucky as to find one that doesn’t make it feel like we’re anything but a team, then you run and fast and as far as you have to get in his arms.” She remembered, the thought making her smile. She sure missed that lady.

“It makes me feel a type of way because from the minute you told that you were pregnant, I was supportive in every single way I could be. I sat with you after Kai “Left” and never once have I made you feel guilty. Now here you are, giving me shit for loving a man who loves me and it just really sucks, Flo, It really does. Kaleb figured you would be happy for us, but clearly he doesn’t know you that well because I figured this would be your reaction. I fought against my better judgement and hoped you’d be a little mindful like I have been with you, but nope. It’s Flo’s world and we’re all lucky enough to live in it.” She was trying so hard not to get mad, she rarely did, but this was really making her upset. Why couldn’t she have just been happy for them? She didn’t understand but she didn’t have much less to say, she didn’t want to fight. As both of them were pregnant, it wasn’t the smartest choice so Sydney said nothing more and left the room rather than talk in circles. She met Kaleb downstairs and then they left the house, the wooden door closing as it echoed through the house.
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Florence

Florence watched her sister leave the room, slowly realizing the scope of the conversation. How it had escalated within minutes - no seconds. She was sitting on the edge of the chair, replaying Sydney's sudden outburst in her head. Her fierce protection of Kaleb. She even had used her grandmothers quotes, even though the latter had filed for divorce for three times during her life, living with four different husbands. Maybe bad luck in relationships ran through their family. Either way, it didn't justify Sydney's cold attitude. Florence tried to understand her sister's unconditional love for her fiance, but simply couldn't. Her happiness obscured her view, made her blind to the obvious: It was time to grow up and wash her own laundry.

However, as Florence stood up and continued to paint the room, she didn't feel reassured. She hated to admit it, but her sisters words had struck a nerve in her. She was right. She shouldn't focus on the bad moments. From now an, she would shift her attention to her unborn baby and put him or her first. Sydney had made her decision to give Kaleb preference. Florence made hers.
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Sydney was gone for the rest of the following weekend. Her and Kaleb went up north where his family owned a few cabins and it was a nice getaway. She felt much more calm and had the energy to deal with her sister. This was honestly probably the longest she had gone without speaking to her sister and she for sure missed her. She wasn't sure if the feeling was mutual quite yet because her sister was very stubborn and loved her dramatics. Oh well, she loved her anyways.

Together they had made the decision that Kaleb would return to his place with his college friend that he had been renting with before everything changed with Sydney. She was sad to let him do that as she just wanted to be with him but understood he just didn't feel comfortable staying, given the current situation. He was bummed but upon sydney's assurance that it wasn't personally him but guys in general he let it be. He was curious how that baby's father knock her up though, that was none of his business though.

It was early in the evening on Sunday and the sun was still up. She had driven back home alone and quietly parked and shut off her car. She sat for a moment, her hand resting on her growing belly. She smiled and eventually got out of the car and walked up the driveway and in through the front door.

She silently set her keys in the dish and headed for the kitchen. She was super thirsty and in need of some water. As she reached in the fridge and started drinking the bottle of water she could hear movement on the steps and new that the peaceful silence would soon be broken.
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