She had been spending the brunt of her time with her grandparents and avoiding her mother at all costs, lest she give something away too soon. Olive and Feng knew something was up, but decided that pressing Ada for details would only make the situation worse. So they waited for a truth that would never come.
Despite her exceptional acting abilities though, her grandparents knew that Adamaris was hiding something big.
"Do you think it's drugs?" Mya blurted. She couldn't help but be worried for her granddaughter. After all, Adamaris was a sensitive child and often seemed more withdrawn than Mya would like. She knew exactly how she felt, feeling alone and ostracized even when in a room full of people, but she was among family and no child should ever feel like they don't belong in their own family.
Rob shook his head vehemently. "Adamaris knows better than that. Olive has taught her well, so I don't think that's the issue. I'm worried it's something deeper. Have you noticed how vacant she looks lately? Like she doesn't feel comfortable in her surroundings?"
Mya nodded. "Do you think we should talk to her?"
"I wish we could, but I don't think it's us she wants to talk to. She's been avoiding Olive and Feng like the plague; as if she wants to tell them something, but doesn't know how."
"I guess we'll have to let our little Olive take care of this one, huh?"
"She hasn't been little in ages."
"Well you don't have to say it like that! You're making me feel old!" Mya retorted, looking at her aged hands placed on her lap. "Do you ever wish we could go back, and start all over again?"
Rob scooted over to his wife and hugged her tight on the couch. "Never in a million years. We did everything right, we spent our time wisely, but now it's our turn to fade out and let the next generation take over."
Mya winked. "Well I know I'm not ready to go out of this world quite yet."
Rob laughed. "I have a feeling you won't be doing any graceful fading anytime soon, dear. After all, you and graceful have always been a contradiction."
And for that, Rob received his last playful slap on the shoulder...
...as the next day was to be his last.
Despite Rob's words of being ready to leave this world he still begged for a little more time, but his only response was silence from the Reaper.
Mya saw the whole thing.
When the girls returned home from school, the family gathered to formally bury Robert out in the backyard. Feng was distraught over Robert's death, and openly mourned the man who he had learned to regard as both a close friend and second father. Admaris also didn't take the news well, but remained withdrawn and didn't express her feelings publicly (much to the dismay of Olive who was hoping that in the face of such grim circumstances, Mar might open up to her). Robert's death didn't quite hit Harper yet as she was still coming to terms with the fact that people do die and eventually leave this world. Olive decided to be the strong one in the family and provide the shoulder for everyone to cry on. She was hoping it would serve as a distraction from her own grief.
Mya was the hardest hit. After a few words were spoken the family retreated inside, but Mya stayed by Rob's grave. She remained by his grave's side for the rest of the day; Olive had to come outside to make sure she ate dinner. Only at night when everyone had fallen asleep did Mya finally return to her empty bedroom. It was solitary and without Robert, but she crawled into her spacious bed anyway pretending that her husband was still alive and there with her.
Olive promised herself that she would be the "strong" one, but once she let the realization sink in that she wouldn't be seeing her father around the house any longer, she finally let her facade falter. Feng was there to help her cope.
She makes a short trip to the tattoo parlor the following afternoon to get a set of angel wings on her ankle. She and her family had never been particularly religious, but it helps her to think that her father is somewhere nicer than here... somewhere happier.
Olive also vowed to take some time that night to talk to her mother, who had been holed up in her room for the past 30 hours. Mya had only left to take a shower or to get food; otherwise, she stayed in her bed watching TV. This isn't the Mya that Olive knew. This isn't what her mother would ever allow her do if their roles were reversed, so she was going to pry her mother out of this funk any way she could.
When Olive first joined Mya on her bed, no words were spoken. They let the silence drift between them before Mya finally broke it.
"I know everyone is worried, but I'm fine. Truly."
"No you're not, mom."
Mya let her smile slip. "You're right, I'm not."
"You have to get out this room for a bit, ma. Get some fresh air, talk to people. Dad would definitely be unhappy to see you rotting in here alone."
Mya laughed. "He most certainly would. I just wanted to be by myself for a bit and reminisce before letting go. I guess I just got caught up in the past and forgot that I still have the present."
"Just promise me you won't be leaving me as well... at least not anytime soon. I was afraid you had given up and were waiting for your turn."
"This old gal won't be kicking the bucket for a while dear, I promise you that."
Olive smiled. "I called Snuffle and Sybil this morning, to give them the news. And I also called a few friends and Feng's family to organize for a funeral tomorrow evening. Corri can't make it from France in time, but Syb will be here."
Mya nodded. "Thank you, sweetheart. For everything. I know this was hard on you as well."
"It was, but you and dad always taught me to push through life's speed bumps. I'm going to miss him."
Mya patted her hand. "Me too."
Sybil was the first to arrive, but avoided talking to any family until she could get her emotions in-check. Instead, she wandered aimlessly around the room greeting Feng's family and any of her father's friends that were able to attend.
When she saw Olive sit down to eat by herself, Sybil made her way over knowing that she too was attempting to avoid as many people (and condolences) as possible.
"You okay, Ollie?"
"Not really; but we've had more things going on here than just dad's passing. You?"
Sybil shook her head silently. "What other things?"
Olive sighed deeply and regained some composure before giving her sister the details. "Well, Adamaris has been acting more reclusive than usual. Usually she talks to me about everything, but we haven't sat down and had a real conversation since we returned from our trip. She's been avoiding me and Feng and I have a feeling Harper knows why as well, but they both just won't... talk. It's killing me. And mom, despite saying that she's fine, is still mourning dad heavily and not really saying much either."
Sybil patted her sister on the shoulder, letting her hand rest there reassuringly. "Everything will be fine Olive... I hope."
Olive smiled sarcastically. "Well the 'I hope' sure sells it, Syb."
Adamaris reached out to her cousin, Tanya. They hadn't been particularly close and only really talked at school; but Adamaris needed someone outside of her immediate family right now. Someone who wasn't harboring any suspicions that something else was bothering her.
"Tanya, do you want to go somewhere else with me? I really can't be here right now."
Tanya looked around the room at all the sad faces and quickly agreed. "Me neither. Where would you like to go?"
Adamaris inched in closer, whispering. "Somewhere where I can make a few changes... aesthetic changes. I don't feel like myself in this hair and these clothes... and I just..." Adamaris couldn't finish the words. There was no way to accurately describe her feelings to someone who had a family she felt she belonged in. Hell, she could barely comprehend these feelings herself. She just wanted to change into something different, be someone different. How could she possibly explain that clearly?
Tanya nodded, as if she understood. "I have a friend that lives near central park that does hair and stuff. She never sleeps and she owes me a favor, so don't worry about paying."
Adamaris smiled. "That's perfect. Thanks Tanya."
After they both managed to sneak out of the house (supposedly unnoticed, but Sybil saw them and relayed the message to Olive), Tanya took Ada to her friends house. Once the makeover was finished, they made their way back to central park to hang out. Mar was avoiding going back home at all costs.
However, the girls were only there for 30 minutes before a cop saw them and wrangled them up to take them home. The whole way back to the Dennis house the cop lectured Ada on being more responsible, but she didn't care anymore. If she was being honest with herself, Mar was beginning to feel hollow inside, emotionless.
When Adamaris returned home, she received another wasteful lecture from Feng. She simply gave a weak smile, promised to be better next time, and then made her way silently to her room not even sparing a second glance at her mother who was waiting to talk with her in the background.
"We need to talk Ada. What have you done with your hair? And what is going on with you, sweetheart?" Olive asked, catching Mar before she made it to the stairs.
Adamaris gave her pseudo smile in response. "I changed it. And can we talk tomorrow? I'm really tired."
Olive nodded. "Sure, but we are going to sit down and talk first thing tomorrow morning."
Adamaris gave her mother a weak hug before retiring to her room. All the while, Olive and Feng watched her ascend the stairs worriedly.
Later that night...
Adamaris waited anxiously for the family to fall asleep. Once the house had fallen completely silent, she gathered what little she packed and then inched slowly out of her room to make sure no one was milling around upstairs. When she was convinced that she was in the clear, she slipped a sloppy goodbye letter under Harper's bedroom door and then made her way to the front door.
She had been planning this for a couple of days now and was convinced that running away and finding a place she truly belonged was the best option, but she still had her reservations. Adamaris took one last look around the entryway, for memories sake, and then swallowed back her emotions.
"This is for the best." She whispered to herself.
And then she turned the knob of the front door and made her way outside to get into the taxi that she called for 30 minutes prior.
"Where are you going?" The taxi driver asked, silently questioning the age of his passenger. She had told him she was 18, but she only looked about 15.
"The nearest train stop, please." Adamaris gave him a thirty dollar bill accompanied by a look that told him to mind his curiosities.
The taxi driver sighed and took the money. "The train station it is then."
And everyone lived happily ever after. *headdesk*
If that doesn't suit you, then here is the real ending for Generation Two and lead into Generation Three (or at least the plot I had cooked up before my computer and legacy went kablooey).
--After Ada runs away, the Dennis clan try desperately to find her, but with no luck. Some of her belongings are recovered a while later from a park in Bridgeport, but they are bloodied and in shambles so the police chalk it up to a possible homicide. After a search was conducted with no further evidence found, she is officially declared dead and the case is closed. (Since you can't really do much in the Simverse when it comes to murder, and because my game imploded before I could fully develop the plot, the concise version is all I can offer).
--The rest of what happens will be cataloged in the introduction of the Harris Legacy.
I apologize for the wordiness of this chapter; I didn't get enough pictures to fully develop what was originally planned so I had to explain them as best I could. Well, here is the end folks. I hope that everyone makes their way over to the Harris blog for the official introduction and to continue the story. Onwards, I say! ; )