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Alright, I Love You

By Genevieve Darcy Granger

Humor / Romance

You happy now?

It was just like any other day at the X-Mansion, a little hectic but they weren’t immersed in battle at the moment. The Brotherhood was mostly been defeated now that Magneto has reined back his zealots in order to make peace with his children and with Charles. Erik mostly did it for his grandchildren. Wanda had twins with Kurt, and Pietro had five kids with Jane. Erik was so happy to finally have a real family again. At the moment, though, Erik was lecturing to a classroom about Mutant Rights, Charles supervising his friend so that he didn’t say anything to insight a riot against the government. Erik’s daughter Wanda, her husband, and her twin sons were on a vacation in Europe touring Catholic Cathedrals and making their way toward Jerusalem and trying to find Kurt’s old circus in Germany. They could handle themselves well enough. However, Erik’s son was in the Mansion’s kitchen with his daughter, son, and triplets. Pietro’s wife Jane was off shopping with Darcy who had finally gotten pregnant, not without lack of unofficially trying. What exactly Pietro and his children were doing in the kitchen though, wasn’t exactly a mystery.

“Are you sure Mom isn’t gonna get mad?” The oldest girl Alice inquired of her father. In addition to being the oldest girl, Alice was also the first born of the group of children and was therefore very responsible, a natural born leader, and arguably even more mature than Pietro at times. Alice had the power to manipulate green energy like magic similar to her mother Jane’s mutation, although she didn’t have the claws. Because of her mutation, Alice strove to emulate and please her mother.

“No, I don’t think she’ll get mad.” Pietro assured his daughter as he gathered up all the fruit from the fridge. “Do you think she’ll get mad, Johnny?”

The second born child and first born son, Johnny floated through the open refrigerator at a high enough height to be eye-level to his father. “I dunno. I’m not sure.” Johnny had a ghost-like mutation. An invisible child who floats was hell for Pietro and Jane to raise, but they were successful nonetheless. Whereas his older sister Alice favored her mother entirely in looks except for bone structure in her face being slightly different and she had a white streak of hair, Johnny favored his father almost completely.

Pietro didn’t flinch, use to Johnny floating around like that. “Okay, let’s take this to a vote then.” Finished in the fridge, he laid his bounty of fruit out on the table. “Organize these by fruit and then by color, okay?” He looked around at all his children. “So who thinks Mom will be mad?”

“All of the children raised their hands except for one of the triplets, Zoe. She giggled and ran around the table, ignoring the sorting that all the other kids were doing. Her mutations was speed, though, thank God, she didn’t go near as fast as her father. Still, she went pretty fast. “I don’t think Mommy will be mad, Daddy. She never stays mad at you.” Zoe hopped up and down a couple of times before continuing her laps. “She never stays mad at me either. Aunt Darcy says it’s because I’m too cute and I look like you, Daddy.”

“Yeah, Aunt Darcy is right, Zoe.” Pietro wasn’t surprised in the slightest that Darcy would tell his kids that. She tells them a lot of things. Well, she will get retribution in spades once her child is born. “But hey, thank you for being the only kid that has faith in me, Zoe, the rest of you are a bunch of traitors.”

The other two triplets, George and Raven, at first said nothing. They just looked at each other and giggled. While they all continued sorting the fruit, eventually George grabbed a banana and twirled it in his hand. “Traitor!” He growled and then erupted into giggles. His siblings joined him shortly.

“Haha, very funny. Disloyalty isn’t a joke, though, son. We have to stay united as a team.” Pietro paused mid-motivational tirade. “Wow, I sounded a lot like Steve then.”

“Uncle Steve?” Raven shyly asked and then continued without waiting for an answer. “Yeah, you did, Daddy. God bless America.”

“Yuck.” Pietro said and his kids laughed again. Thank God he could be a comedian without having to use dad jokes. “Okay, are all the fruits sorted out?”

There was a chorus of affirmatives, heads nodding yes up and down. “So what do we do now? I still don’t understand what we’re doing. Or why it has to be a surprise.” Alice was still very doubtful.

Using his super speed, Pietro gathered large silver soup pots and quickly dumped the fruits in the pots in a sort of pattern. One pot had nothing but blue and purple fruits, one nothing but oranges, and one nothing but yellow fruits, and the last had red fruits. “Now we’re gonna smash them in the pots. Okay Zoe, you like to run around so much and bounce? How about you jump in the pot?”

Zoe didn’t need to be told twice. She quickly hopped in the red pot and started jumping up and down, smashing the fruit underneath her sneakers. The whole time she was giggling and Pietro smiled at her childlike glee. “Alright, George, you next.”

“You’re not gonna put me in the oven are you?” George was a little more hesitant but allowed himself to be put in the pot where he crushed the yellow fruits with stomps.

“Don’t be silly, George. This kinda pot goes on the stove.” Pietro patted George’s shoulder and George knew that his father was just messing around. “Okay now I need two volunteers for the last two pots. Raven? Would you like the blues or the oranges?”

“Blue!”

“Well, up you get and in you go, then!” Pietro scooped her up and threw her in the air, where she squealed. Once he safely caught her, he lowered her into the bucket where she followed suit with the rest of the siblings. “Okay, you guys wanna play paper/rock/scissors for the last bucket?”

“Neither of us wanna do it, Dad.” Johnny apologetically informed his father. “Mom is just gonna yell at us for getting our clothes dirty.”

“Besides, Dad, these are Aunt Darcy’s good cooking pots. Uncle Logan bought them for their Anniversary.” Alice added on.

“Come on, I’ll just get Zayda Magneto to make her some new ones or patch these up. She’ll never know the difference.”

“Yeah, Zayda is that good.” Alice eventually agreed, “But still. Aunt Darcy is pregnant. She’s weird now.”

“That doesn’t change the fact that she reads minds, too.” Johnny reminded them both.

“Oh yeah, how could I forget when she’s always poking around.” Pietro was sarcastic but he quickly dropped that tone, “Look guys, trust me. This is gonna be very special for your mom. I’m trying to make her some homemade paint.”

“Then I don’t think this is gonna work.” Raven huffed from her pot.

“Yeah, this is like making smoothies, Dad. All my yellow fruit is looking like is a mess. Not yellow paint.” George sounded a little dejected.

His sister on the other hand, couldn’t’ be any further on the other end of the spectrum. “I think this is a great idea. I’m already having so much fun!” Zoe increased her jumping, hopping higher and higher each time.

“Hey, be careful there, Zoe. You don’t want to spill the pot,” her father warned but it was too late. With a mighty crash, the pot dumped over and spilled it’s squashed contents, juices sticky on the kitchen tile. The pot itself now had a dent on the side.

“Oops.”

“Uh, maybe you guys were right. Zoe, I don’t think we should keep doing this.” Pietro was beginning to have second thoughts now.

“No, no, wait. Don’t listen to them, Dad. Look, I’ll clean it up.” Zoe started running and of course she slipped and crashed into Raven’s pot, toppling that one over, too.

Her sister fell to the floor and started crying. “Daddy, I have blueberries in my hair.”

“Oh no, sweetheart. Alice! Johnny! Help clean up this mess. Zoe, please, just sit still. Raven, Raven you’re okay.” In his rush to get to his fallen daughters, Pietro kicked George’s pot and just barely managed to snatch his youngest son up before the pot crashed over and completed the mess. Naturally, it clattered against the pot of oranges, and that spilled, too, though that made a lot let mess. “George, I’m sorry, are you okay? Oh my God, I hope your mother doesn’t come home yet.”

“Well you can wish in one hand, and, well, you know the rest by now, Pietro.” Darcy’s voice rang through his head. Oh God, they were both home.

Pietro looked around the kitchen and begged aloud, “Please, please, please, please distract Jane. I was just trying to make–”

“–homemade paint, yes I know. It’s more like you’re trying to make wine and just a mess. God, you used my good pots, too? Pietro Maximoff.”

“Please, Darcy, help me out.” Pietro continued to plead.

“I can’t.” Darcy’s voice came from inside the room now, where she was leaning heavily against the door jam. Her pregnancy made her not only generally unpredictable but very tired. The children didn’t notice her entrance, too busy trying to clean up the tracks their shoes left through the mess. Pietro noticed Darcy, though, and more importantly he noticed his wife Jane standing just behind Darcy.

“Darcy, why don’t you go lie down while I handle this.” Jane didn’t sound very happy.

“I’ll just send Erik in to fix my pots, Jane. Hello kiddies, Goodbye kiddies. Darcy has to go isolate herself now. If you see Uncle Logan, send him my way with something to distract me from the thought of wine.”

“Uh, Aunt Darcy! Do you need help?” Alice quickly volunteered and shed her shoes to beat a hasty retreat. “I told Dad this was a bad idea,” she called over her shoulder to her mother as she helped escort Darcy away from the scene of the crime.

Following her lead, Johnny didn’t even bother saying anything. He just went invisible and passed through a wall to avoid the consequences of his father’s actions. George was a little more respectful, “Um, I’m gonna go find Uncle Logan for Aunt Darcy.” He narrowly escaped passed his mother, moving at a speed that would impress his father.

Zoe didn’t retreat, loyal to the very end. Well that and she scraped her knee and needed a band-aid before it healed herself, but she figured now wouldn’t be a good time to ask for one yet. Raven stayed, too, still wiping the tears from her eyes and picking the blueberries out of her hair. Still sitting on the floor, she reached her arms up and called, “Mama!”

Jane pushed past Pietro and picked up both of her babies, once more juggling one on each hip. “Raven, oh are you okay, sweetie? Daddy was pretty stupid, huh? What about you, Zoe? Oh no, your knee? Don’t worry. I’ll handle this.”

She put Zoe on the countertop where she told her to kick off her shoes, and then put Raven in the sink where she sat docilely. First she put the bandaid on Zoe’s knee and kissed her forehead. “There you go, good as new. Now go find Zayda Magneto so he can fix this mess.” Zoe giggled and spirited herself away obediently.

Then Jane started cleaning Raven up, running the sink over her daughter’s hair and using a washcloth to clean off the sticky residue. Blueberries, compared to the other fruit, stained though not as severely as pomegranates. They didn’t use any pomegranates thankfully. “Okay, Pietro, what exactly were you planning here? Tell me this isn’t another Mother’s Day Breakfast Fiasco Gone South.”

“No, no, I just saw this thing online about making homemade organic paint from fruit and so I just wanted to try it out.” He explained himself.

“Pietro, that’s a hoax,” Jane started drying Raven’s hair with a dishtowel. All the while the girl kept quiet. Out of all the children, she rarely spoke. She was just shy that way.

“I can see that now, Janie baby.” Pietro tried to sweet-talk her.

“Uh huh. Okay, Raven, go and change clothes. You’re all washed up now.” Jane kissed the girl’s cheek and Raven patted her cheek in turn before she quickly left without a backwards glance at her father. She knew he’d get in trouble somehow.

“I’m sorry, Janie baby. Can you ever forgive me?” Pietro sincerely apologized to his wife.

“Maybe. If you can clean this up and hope that Magneto can fix the pots. Darcy is very upset you dented them.”

“Really? How can you tell?” Pietro didn’t think she looked that upset.

“Because I’m upset you dented them.” Jane deadpanned seriously.

“Oh. Well. I’m sorry, Janie baby.” He apologized again, just as serious as before.

“Don’t apologize to me. Apologize to Darcy.” Jane told him seriously as she gathered the mop and bucket.

“I will, don’t worry. I’ll make this up to you.” Pietro earnestly promised.

“If that means you’ll make another mess, then please do not.” Jane warned him and filled the bucket with water and soap from the sink.

“Okay, well, you don’t have to clean up, Jane.” Pietro took the mop and bucket from her.

“I know I don’t. You’re gonna clean. It’ll take you no time at all. Just do a good job.”

“Do you forgive me yet, Janie baby?”

There was silence as Jane pressed her lips together. Then the words burst out from her, “I’m under a lot of stress, Pietro. Darcy is pregnant and going through withdrawal from alcohol. She can’t cook anymore because it makes her sick. I have my own kids to handle on top of you, and I think we’re gonna have another mission, too. One with Loki.”

By the time she finished speaking, Pietro had cleaned the kitchen entirely and all remnants of his accident was gone. “I’m sorry, Janie baby. That’s why I was making you the paint. So you could relax and do something fun. Don’t blame the kids.”

“I don’t.”

“Okay good, because this was my idea.”

“I know.”

“I was trying to do something nice. I’m sorry, Jane. Forgive me, please?”

Jane could only sigh.

“Do you love me at least?” Pietro pouted and gave her his best impression of Balto. Their dog was on a mission with Deadpool right now because Darcy’s feline instincts flared uncomfortably around a dog.

Knowing what he was doing because he’s done it a million times before, always successfully, Jane sighed again, this time with words pouring out of her mouth. “Okay, fine, alright I love you.”

Suddenly she was assaulted with kisses as Pietro grabbed her around the waist and dipped her low. “I know you do. I love you, too, by the way.”

“That’s sweet, Pietro,” Jane giggled, and then taking advantage of the absence of their children who probably wouldn’t go looking for them anytime soon knowing their father was in trouble – she kissed him again, deepening the kiss. Married life suited them well, as did parenthood. 

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