The warm sun was just beginning to set on the backyard casting an orange hue over everything. A fire was being built in a makeshift fire pit to fight the oncoming darkness stretching out across the land. The small group of adults chatted happily, the children running around looking for marshmallow sticks.
Wild flowers had been planted around the deck, a few cut and placed in jars on the tables set about the yard.
It had been almost three years since the twins were born. Between the twins, Isabelle having her daughter, and work, the wedding had taken longer than they expected to plan. Finally the day had arrived, and after a small ceremony, everyone was relaxing and enjoying the reception.
Raine walked out from the house, having changed out of her wedding dress and into jeans and a hoody. While she loved the dress, she wanted something more comfortable to chase the kids and hang around the fire in.
Ezekiel met her at the bottom of the steps, taking her hand in his. She smiled at him, admiring him still dressed in his black dress pants and matching vest, a blue long sleeved dress shirt underneath.
“The kids are ready for s’mores.” Isabelle walked up, carrying her daughter, Sophia, on her hip.
Raine reached out taking the baby from her, “I bet they are! Are you going to have one too, Sophie?” She danced, making Sophia giggle and clap her hands.
“Mama, mama!” Jax ran up, Evie hot on his heels, “I want chocolate! Cole-” Evie bumped into him, making him stumble forward into Raine’s leg.
“Mama!” Evie chirped, “Cole has choc’late!” She hugged Jax, “We want choc’late!” They said in unison.
Raine smiled at the two, “We’ll make s’mores and you can have it then.”
“Come on,” Ezekiel ruffled their hair, “I’ll help get them started.” The two cheered before running back to Cole. Ezekiel smiled at Raine and kissed her on the cheek before following after them.
“They are getting so big!” Isabelle sighed, “I can’t believe it. Makes me feel old.” She pouted.
Raine laughed, “Time is going by fast.”
“They look so much like Ezekiel.” Isabelle watched the twins wrestle on the ground by Cole. The older boy giggled at them while secretly handing Ira a piece of chocolate.
The twins both had Ezekiel’s blond hair, long ears, and green skin, but had Raine’s hazel eyes and tail. The only differences between the two were Evie’s lavender highlighted hair and spotted tail.
“Yeah,” Raine walked over to a table where Valery and Christy were visiting, “He’s so good with them too.”
“I have to say,” Christy leaned forward making eye contact with Raine, “And I’m kind of ashamed to admit this,” She grimaced, “I used to think Ezekiel was just a monster, but seeing him with Cole, the twins, and you,” She lowered her eyes, “I’m sorry I ever thought that.”
Raine put her hand on Christy’s shoulder, “Thanks,” She smiled warmly at her, “I’m glad you gave him another chance.” She moved over to an empty chair and sat down, bouncing Sophia on her knee.
Isabelle sat down on the other side, “Oh boy, look at that fire.” She tilted her head in the direction of the fire pit. The men were standing around it watching Vince dump a bottle of lighter fluid on the flames. They jumped backwards as the flames suddenly exploded higher for a moment, before dying back down. The kids screamed and laughed running away.
“Hey!” Raine yelled over to them, “You’re supposed to be helping the kids make s’mores!”
Ezekiel flashed her a toothy grin, “We will!” He turned back to the fire, taking an offered drink from Gabriel. Daniel picked up the package of marshmallows and began handing them out to the kids.
Isabelle made a face at Sophia, making the baby giggle, “How’s Cole doing this week?” She glanced up at Raine, before turning her attention back on Sophia.
“Good. It’s actually been a pretty good week for him.” Raine handed Sophia to Isabelle and stood up, “No nightmares since he saw you last week.”
“That’s great!” Isabelle cradled Sophia in her arms, gently rocking her.
Valery nodded, “That’s really good! I felt so bad for all of you last week.” She frowned, swishing her drink in her cup.
Raine nodded, “It was pretty bad... He's been getting more and more protective of the twins, especially Jax. That movie just sent him over the edge. I think Ezekiel learned his lesson letting him stay up late to watch scary movies.” She rolled her eyes in exasperation, “I’ll go get Sophia a s’more.” She jogged over to the guys helping the kids roast marshmallows.
“Do you think he’ll be okay?” Christy raised an eyebrow.
Isabelle shrugged then nodded, “Oh yeah.” She looked away distractedly, avoiding Christy’s unbelieving look.
“It’s not really just the scary movie,” Valery crossed her legs returning Isabelle’s look of caution with a pointed one, “I’m sure it didn’t help though. One week he’s great, the next week he has terrible insomnia.”
Christy frowned, “Poor boy,” She took a sip of her drink, “Hopefully it’s something he will outgrow.”
Valery and Isabelle exchanged doubtful looks.
“Hopefully,” Isabelle said softly, smiling at Raine as she returned with a s’more on a plate, “Thanks, aunty Raine!”
Raine smiled at her and Sophie, “You’re welcome,” She glanced back at the boys wrestling near the fire, “Guys…” She called out warningly.
“Hey boys, not around the fire.” Gabriel warned them, stepping to the side to put something down.
Valery turned as Cole tackled Ira, the two tumbling forward near the flames, “Ira!” She cried out, racing forward.
The two boys jumped to their feet, patting themselves quickly.
“We’re okay! We’re okay!” Ira said quickly, glancing at Cole who looked like a deer caught in headlights as Valery ran up to inspect them.
She breathed a sigh of relief, “Not. Around. The. Fire.” She said sternly, emphasizing every word so she knew they understood how serious she was. They nodded quickly, shuffling their way away from the fire and closer to their fathers.
“Keep an eye on them!” Valery shouted to Gabriel, “Last thing we need is a trip to the emergency room.” She gave her husband a look.
Gabriel nodded, “Got it. Did you hear her boys?”
Rolling their eyes both boys nodded, “Yes.” They drawled out, rummaging through the bag of marshmallows and box of graham crackers.
Valery walked back to the girls, rolling her eyes and shaking her head at the boy’s nonchalant attitudes over the near miss.
Raine gave her a mischievous grin, “What’s a party without a trip to the emergency room?”
“I really don’t want to think what kind of trip that would have been.” Valery responded, her eyes widening at the thought as she shuddered.
Isabelle shivered, "Why'd I get deja vu?" She wondered out loud, helping Sophie break apart and eat her s'more.
Christy nodded in agreement, “You’re right, it would have been horrible,” She stood up, “I must get going, Raine, your wedding was beautiful. Congrats again.” She hugged Raine gently before walking away to say goodbye to her son and the others.
"At least that's one mind changed about Drakons." Valery muttered just loud enough for the other two women to hear.
Grimacing, Raine sat down next to Isabelle, "Ezekiel is stocking up the bunker with Vince this weekend."
"Gabriel mentioned something about that." Valery picked at her nails, "Have you heard anything else Isabelle?"
Wiping her hands on a napkin, Isabelle shook her head, "Raine, this is your day. Let's not ruin it with this stuff." She tossed the napkin onto the table, "Let's get some music playing." She suggested, standing up and bouncing Sophie as she danced in a small circle. Realizing she didn't get a response from either of her friends, she turned to them in annoyance. Chills ran up her spine seeing everyone looking up at the sky.
In the distance several planes flew by, splitting up each heading in a direction towards a village.
Ezekiel looked over his shoulder to Raine as their phones all simultaneously went off with an alert.