Nikolai sniffled, tightening his grip around my body. A few tears trickled out of my eyes as well, a slight twinge of pain in my chest as I creepily inhaled his scent, tightening my grip on his shirt. "I'll miss you so much girlie." He whispered as he gave me a squeeze. "I'll miss you too, Niko. Please come visit for Christmas okay? Or even summer!" I said, pulling away slightly to look at him. His nose was red, and cheeks wet, and I'm sure mine were as well. Nikolai nodded, sniffling again. "Absolutely."
Since I made my resolution to stop worrying about finding my soulmate and focus on the moment, I enjoyed the time spent with my family considerably more than I ever did; up to the point where Jupiter was in the back of my mind and my gut feeling was silent. The day after the street party/carnival, we piled into Vincent's pick-up and spent the day at the beach, building sandcastles and playing around like children. The day after that, we stayed home during the day but went clubbing at night, much to Vincent's discontentment. Yesterday, we shipped Emeraude's stuff out to my parents' and remained home, packing up and relaxing.
It was late in the morning, and Nikolai hasn't stopped crying since we left the house and drove to the airport. Vincent laid a comforting hand on his soulmate's shoulder, and we pulled away, only for me to be pulled into his embrace. "We'll see each other soon, girlie." He murmured, giving me a squeeze and I nodded as a few tears slipped from my eyes. The twins and Emeraude stood off to the side, waiting for me so that we could board the plane together. Other passengers walked sluggishly through the gate, so I took a few more seconds in Vincent's arms.
Pulling away, I held onto his forearms. "I promise you, I will help you with your adoption; in anyway that I can." Vincent smiled brightly and nodded. "Thank you, Ginny." I smiled as my response, then picked up my bag off the floor. "Off I go again." I whispered, and Vincent ruffled my hair. "Good luck." I whispered my thanks, then turned away from them and walked towards the twins and Emeraude. Casey slung his arm around my shoulder, pulling me to his side. "Next stop: Europe." he murmured, gaining Emeraude's attention. "We could visit my parents!" she bounced on her toes as she clung to Collin's arm. "That was the plan, Em." the red-head grinned brightly, and we boarded the plane, Casey and I a few seats behind Emeraude and Collin.
Before I knew it, the plane was up in the air, soaring through the clouds.
It had been hours, and night had long fallen. Casey had gotten restless countless times throughout the flight, and would change seats with Collin or Emeraude. I, however, was pinned to my seat by some force that wasn't my seatbelt, since it lay open on either side of me. My gut feeling was back in full force, and try as I might, it wouldn't go away.
Collin sat next to me now, flipping through the magazine for the tenth time. "I think, I'll just go home." I whispered, staring blankly at the blue seat in front of me. "What? No! Gin..." I felt Collin twist in his seat, and from the corner of my eye, I could see him leaning down. I inhaled deeply, then faced him, meeting his brown eyes with my own. His shoulders slumped and he sighed. "Ginny..." Despite the seat divider between us, Collin pulled me into a hug and I tried to keep my emotions in check. Breaking down on a crowded airplane was not on my agenda.
"Please.. please stay." He pulled away slightly, brushing away the traitorous tear that slipped from my eye. "It'll be so much fun with you there. I always hoped that you'd show me all the places you and Jupiter went to. Please don't go; I still have so much hope for you." More tears slipped from my eyes, and all I could do was nod, struggling to keep in the sob that had lodged itself in my throat. He pulled me into him again, his chin atop my head.
"I wish there was something I could do to shut that stupid gut feeling of yours up." He murmured, tightening his hold slightly. "Me too." I whispered, then we fell into a comfortable silence, until a few minutes later, the pilot spoke over the intercom, announcing our arrival. He released me as Casey reappeared, and squeezed my hand before he returned to Emeraude's side. Casey plopped down in the seat and buckled up, then took my hand in his and held it tightly. It was almost as if he were silently saying, "I'm not letting you go anywhere."
I spotted the blonde man pacing before he could see us. His hair was sticking up all over the place and he was in fuzzy slippers, pyjama pants, a questionably stained T-shirt and a leather jacket; typical Steward. Doing my best impersonation of Lois Griffin, I shouted, "Stewie!"
Emeraude sputtered out a laugh, and the twins snickered as the blonde spun around and his face split into a grin. "My God, Lois!" he returned in an impeccable Stewie impersonation, and jogged over to us, pulling the twins and myself into his embrace. "Man, you boys have gotten tall." He said in his familiar British accent as he pulled away, tilting his head back slightly to properly look at the twins. "And you!" he turned to me, still grinning, "You're still so short!" I flipped him off and swatted his hand away when he tried to ruffle my hair. We were the same height.
"And who is this beauty?" he turned to Emeraude, who flushed slightly. "I'm not afraid to punch you, Stewie." Collin said, playfully glaring at the man, whose eyes widened and he dramatically switched his gaze from Emeraude to Collin. "Oh! Well, congratulations Collie boy! Your kids are gonna be beautiful." Emeraude flushed deeply and averted her gaze to her sneaker-clad feet. "I call dibs on being the godfather." Casey said, and Stewie groaned. "I was gonna call dibs! You're his twin brother, you automatically have rights!"
I chuckled and shook my head as the two playfully bantered while we gathered our luggage and walked to his car. The hour drive to his house in the suburbs was filled with us catching up, and occasional silence as we took in the nightlife. Once we got to his house, we silently filed into the warmth. The lights were on, and long locks of blond hair tumbled off the side of the sofa. Stewie smiled softly as he readjusted the covers on the sleeping figure, then he stood and showed us our rooms. Casey and I bunked together, while the newly paired Half shared a room.
I didn't unpack or take time to look around the room; as soon as I saw a bed, I flopped onto it and allowed unconsciousness to slowly take over. My awareness of my surroundings was leaving, but I knew Casey had done the same, kicking off his shoes and groaning in the process. My body sank further into the bed as my muscles relaxed, and darkness fell.
Daylight came sooner than I'd like. I really wanted to sleep in, but I still kicked off the covers I managed to get tangled in and stretched as I rose to my feet. Casey lay on his back, with one hand on his chest and the other laying beside him, and his legs spread. He snored lightly, and his foot twitched every few seconds. I quietly walked out of the room, and the scent of sausages and freshly baked bread filled my senses. My stomach growled loudly and I patted it. "Soon, child. Soon." I murmured as I followed the scent.
Long blond locks swished as the woman made her way about the kitchen, humming a tune. "Morning Liza." I greeted with a smile and the woman spun around, squealing once her gaze landed on me. "Ginny! Come here and give me my hug!" I chuckled as I made my way over to her and we embraced, rocking sideways as she gushed about how pretty I had gotten. "Sit! Sit!" Liza ushered and I slid onto a barstool, leaning on my elbows as she continued to work. "We really need to catch up." "That we do, Ginny. Maybe we can have a girls' day with that pretty red-head. Who is that anyway?" Stewie must have shown her the picture I sent, informing him before-hand about our new addition.
"Collin's Half." I responded, combing my fingers through my hair and pulling out the tangles. Eliza gasped as she set a plate down. "Are you serious? Lucky him!" she gushed, and I smiled. "I know right." Her face instantly dropped and I sighed. "Liza I'm fine. I still... have hope. At least, I think I do." She walked around the counter and pulled me into another hug. "I have faith." I patted and squeezed her shoulder and we detached from each other, both of us going back to our tasks and falling into a comfortable silence.
The others soon filed in, and sat at the counter as well, typing away at their phones or in conversation with each other. "Any plans for today?" Stewie asked as he wrapped his arms around Eliza while she placed food on the plate meant to be his. I looked to the twins and Emeraude. "It's all up to you guys." They looked at me, then at each other. "Sight seeing?" Emeraude asked with a shrug. "Like, the basic tourist stuff?" Eliza asked, and the three of them nodded. "Then we could go other places tomorrow." Collin added, and Stewie nodded.
"Alright then. Sight seeing it is." We discussed our plans as we ate, then broke off to get ready. Casey showered while I fixed my hair, still in my towel. He slipped back in to get his clothes then ran out as Emeraude entered the room with her clothes in hand. "Public nudity Casey!" she shouted playfully, and he replied smugly, "You've seen my clone, there's nothing different." "I have done no such thing!" she yelled back, her cheeks tinting red. Casey laughed maniacally, and I could faintly hear Stewie's own chuckle.
I finished with my hair and pulled on a pair of dark jeans and a light blue sweater, with a pair of sneakers to match. "Uh, Ginny?" I heard a shy voice ask, and I looked to Emeraude. "Yeah?" she shuffled about nervously before speaking up again. "Could you, uhm, help me with my hair?"
My shoulders slumped slightly. "Of course, Em." I gestured for her to sit, and got working on her hair, giving her a cute braid. I was done within five minutes, and was putting my stuff together when she spoke again. "Ginny." I looked at her standing at the threshold, fingers playing with the end of the braid. "Collin really cares about you, and uhm, he was really upset when he said that you wanted to leave. I was kind of sad too, so.. please, stay, okay?" I nodded, a small smile tugging at my lips.
"I'll stay." I confirmed, and she gave a short nod before exiting the room. I sighed deeply before finishing up with tidying. 'I really hope that I can keep my promise...'