I looked down at the thick paper forms in my hands with mixed feelings, studying every word down to the last full stop so that I’d pretty much nearly memorised the whole thing. So many spaces to sign, boxes to fill in, and it was honestly quite overwhelming. Truthfully, I’d expected this to happen, although I’m not so sure why I thought that the day when the papers would be posted through our doors would never come.
“What’s up, buttercuuup?” Poppy laughed as she and Grace came dancing into the room, both of them obviously in great moods. When she saw my expression she became more serious and walked over to where I was standing by the door, gently taking the forms and sighing once she’d caught on to what was written on them. “They’re taking us to court? Really?” She almost sounded bored.
“I guess we saw it coming.” I nodded, taking the papers from her and placing them down on the table beside the door. “I’ll talk to Callie once she gets in, and we can contact a lawyer.”
“It’s really weird, to think of it as court.” Poppy giggled. I was glad that she was taking this so well, because we all knew that David and Sarah didn’t stand a chance; not with everything that had happened.
“You’re coming to Poppy’s birthday thing, right Grace?” I asked Grace, referring to the party I’d planned for Poppy for her birthday in three weeks. I suppose you could call it a party, but it was really just a few of Poppy’s friend, including Grace, plus a few friends from the hospital coming for a buffet dinner.
“I sure am, Mrs Robbins.” She chirped, addressing me in her usual formal manner which I’d brushed off many times.
“Do I have to say it again? Call me Arizona.” I laughed and she shrugged her shoulders.
“Sorry, Arizona. It’s just a hard habit to break.” She giggled and I laughed. It really was.
Twenty minutes later we were all situated around the kitchen table (Sofia at preschool and Callie at work) and the conversation flowed lightly, and we moved onto the topic of the work experience programme going on at their school.
“So what are you guys doing?” I asked.
“I’m going to the animal rescue service, the one just around the corner from the school.” Grace replied, taking a sip from her Coke.
She looked up at me and smiled. “Well, I’m not a stalker or anything, but I was looking on the Grey Sloan website and they do work experience, so I got forms for there.” She told me.
“That’s so cool!” I exclaimed. “I’m on the board so I’ll definitely be hearing about that soon.”
“You’re on the board?!” Grace exclaimed, looking surprised. “Like, as in, the boss of everybody board?”
“I sure am. After the plane crash we got a settlement for fifteen million dollars each. Because it was the hospital that put us on the plane, it caused them near bankruptcy. With a lot of help from the Harper Avery Foundation, we manage to buy the hospital ourselves. So technically, I partially own the damn thing.” I laughed. When Poppy had first moved in with us it had been quite overwhelming for her, so I guessed that Grace knew everything. I was okay with that.
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX THREE WEEKS LATER XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
Chaos. Complete and utter chaos, is what described the last week. Of course the court date would be set on the same week as Poppy’s birthday and her work experience, so everything was rushed and we were all going nuts trying to get everything done.
“You ready for this?” I asked Poppy, taking her hand in one of mine and Callie’s in the other as we prepared to walk into the court room. Alex had taken it upon himself to become the ‘cool uncle’ and had taken Sofia out to the fairground so that we could go to this thing.
“Damn right I am.” Poppy smirked confidently, not a trace of worry on her face. “Let’s go win a court case!”
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX (Work experience part of week) XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
“It’s still so weird sitting here in the cafeteria with you here.” Callie laughed as we sat around a table in the middle of the busy lunch hall.
“It’s so weird to be here!” Poppy exclaimed. “But I’ve learned so much! I was in the nursery earlier, and all the babies are superly cutely adorable!”
“I saw you in there.” I commented. “I was speaking with a baby’s parents at the time so I couldn’t talk, but I did see you. You looked like you were having fun.”
“I don’t know if it’s just having two doctors for parents that’s brought on this interest for medicine, but I love it.” Poppy agreed, and Callie and I shared a happy glance at her casual use of the word ‘parents’.
“Medicine can be tough sometimes, but it definitely is worth it in the long run.” Callie said, as both of our pagers went off, both signalling the ER.
“What are the chances someone fell off of their bike?” Callie guessed as she finished off her drink, tossing everything into the bin.
“Pretty high.” I nodded before turning to Poppy. “You okay without us?”
“Sure.” She smiled, glancing at her watch. “I have to get back anyway. I’ll see you guys later!”
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX (BACK TO THE COURT CASE) XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
“Mrs Robbins, it’s reported that there was an incident just after the new year involving Mr and Mrs Ross, am I correct?” The judge asked. She was currently looking down on me from that now scarily high podium thing, and I could feel myself getting nervous. What if we didn’t win? I mean, we’d only known Poppy for four months.
‘Shut up, Arizona…’ I told myself ‘You’ve got this.’
“And can you elaborate on what happened?”
I sighed, deciding from which point I should start at. “Well, I was sitting at the kitchen counter doing paperwork, and there’s a knock on the door. At this point, Poppy was still in bed, and our other daughter Sofia was out with a friend, and Callie was in the living room. I answered it, and David and Sarah were there with the adoption forms we’d sent a few weeks previously. They pretty much invited themselves in, and just started throwing insults at us. How we were a sin that were raising an innocent child to believe wrong, and that we couldn’t even provide properly for us if we were living in an apartment.” I recalled. “And may I just say that my wife and I are ranked two of the best doctors in the country, and we recently just moved into a house.” I decided that now would be a perfect time to throw them a look from across the room.
“It didn’t take long for Poppy to wake up, and when she did that’s when the real argument started. Poppy asked them why they were there and they said to get her back, and when she told them she hadn’t split up with her girlfriend they became angrier. After a while, Poppy made it clear that we were the family she wanted, and that with us is where she wanted to stay. She also stated that we were better parents then they’d ever been, and that if they couldn’t accept her that was their fault.” I summarised, and she thought over it for a minute.
“Miss Ross, is this true?” She asked Poppy.
“It is. I have no interest in going back to David and Sarah. Especially after David hit me.” She stated clearly, and I could tell by what she had just said we had basically just won this thing. If Poppy wanted to stay, and her parents had no reason to want her back, plus David hitting her, it was pretty much already done.
“I can’t believe we won!” Poppy exclaimed, throwing herself into Callie’s open arms. We were all laughing and cheering, as we had been from the moment the judge had declared that we should get parental rights over Poppy.
“You were so certain that we’d win anyway!” I exclaimed, hugging her tightly. Over her shoulder, I could see David and Sarah glaring at us as they were handed papers, what I assumed were the adoption ones, from across the room. I smirked a little to myself and let Poppy go, holding her at arm’s length so I could examine who I could now legally call my daughter.
“It was really short too.” She indicated to the clock which showed us that we’d only been in there for close to two hours. “We really kicked ass!”
“Hey, language…” Callie smirked at Poppy.
“Sorry, mom…” She muttered sarcastically.
“But you’re right.” She agreed, wrapping one arm around each of us. “We did kick ass!”