It's not as long as I wanted it to be but it's been ages since I last posted anything. I decided to add Lily, Prince, and Hunter because I needed more people so yeah.
We sit for about two and a half minutes after Leela leaves before Emma breaks the silence. "Auntie Si Si?" (Said Cece) Oh that's so cute. "Yeah Emma?"
"What time's Mummy coming back again? I forgotted."
"She said she wasn't sure and that Peri or Auntie Tegan might pick you up."
"I not met Auntie Tegan." She says with a frown.
"Nope, but I met Rose."
"Yeah but we couldn't play together 'cause Mummy sayed it was bedtime."
"Well I'm sure you'll be able to play another time... Emma, this is Ben. Can you say hi for me?" She turns her head towards him and utters a quiet hello to which he smiles and answers the same back. "Do you want a drink sweetheart?"
"Want to come and pick something with me? Or would you like to stay here with Ben?"
"'Ome wif you."
"Come on then." I stand up with her in my arms and move towards the counter. "What would you like?"
"What they have?"
"Umm, you could have juice, milk, hot chocolate, a milkshake? Whatever you want."
"I have 'ilkshake?"
"Of course, what kind do you want?"
"Banana it is, are you hungry?"
"How about a muffin?"
"Okay you can pick one when we get to the counter."
"Who let you loose with a kid?" I look up to see that it's our turn to order and step forward towards Esther.
"Can I have a banana milkshake please?" She moves to make the drink but continues to watch us.
"Seriously, who was brave enough to leave their kid with you?"
"Is that really any of your business?"
"Was only asking. Can I get you anything else?"
"What kind of muffins do you have?"
"Chocolate chip, lemon, double chocolate, blueberry and red velvet."
"What kind do you want Emmy?" I look down to the girl in my arms.
"Mmmm, chocolate chip?"
"Just a chocolate chip muffin then please."
"£2.85 please." I hand over the money and pass the muffin to Emma before taking my change and the milkshake. Then I turn and head back to the table. I place Emma down on the couch next to Ben, sit beside her and give her her drink. "T'ank you."
"Do you want the muffin opened?"
We sit for another twenty minutes or so before I notice Emma's starting to look tired. "I think we should head back to the flat now." I tell Ben motioning to Emma who is tiredly finishing off her milkshake. "Sounds like a good idea, want a coffee to go?"
"Please, I'll sort Emma while you get them?"
"Sure, I'll be right back." He stands up and heads over to join the queue at the counter and I move to crouch in front of Emma. "Hey sweetie, are you ready to go?"
"We're gonna go to my flat Hun."
"Buh what 'bout mummy?"
"What do you mean?"
"What if she can't find us?"
"You're mum knows where I live sweetheart, and I'll text her to tell her where we are."
"Oh otay. I ready."
"I think you should have a nap when we get there sweetie."
"Nuh uh, not sleepy."
"Mhm, I 'wake."
"Maybe we'll just have some quiet time then hmm?"
"Good girl, come on, let's get you in your pushchair okay?"
"No love, it'll be quicker and it's kind of cold outside."
"Oh. 'tay I go in buggy."
"Thanks sweetie." I lift her up and place her into the pushchair and buckle her in as Ben comes back.
"Yeah, let's go."
"Right I'll pull the top, you hold the bottom so it doesn't bounce her around."
When we get the pushchair to the top of the stairs, we walk along the corridor to my flat and head in. Emma fell asleep only a couple of minutes after we set off from The Bean, so we called in at Price Slice for some milk and bread before coming back to the flat. Ben heads straight for the bedroom, returning a few minutes later dressed in his uniform.
"Right, I've gotta go to work now, my shift starts in 10."
"You're coming back later right?"
"Yeah, I'll be back around 11 hopefully."
"Okay, see you later."
"Bye babe, have fun." He says grabbing his phone and wallet, then kissing my cheek and leaving.
"Hey honey, Mummy's at work remember?" I ask crouching down next to where she's now sitting up on the couch.
"Oh. I 'member. When come back?" I gently push her hair behind her ear as she talks.
"I'm not sure, but she might not be the one picking you up, okay?"
"Mhm, Auntie Tegan or Pewi."
"Pewi doesn' like me."
"What makes you say that?"
"She telled me go 'way an' shut me out her room. An' she sayed she don' wan' a sis'er."
"Why did she do that?"
"No know." She huffs. "Aksed if she wan'ed b'eakfast an' she sayed go 'way an' pushed me out her room."
"Did you tell Leela?"
"Jake sayed it bad ta tell on people."
"From my old house."
"Oh, well Jake's wrong. If someone is mean to you, you should tell someone."
"'ike I telled you?"
"Yeah, so if anyone is mean to you again, what do you do?"
"Good girl. So what do you want to now?"
"Uhhh... I colour?"
"If you want to, let's have a look in your bag and see if there's anything in there to colour, okay?"
"Otay." I stand and help her off the couch, before grabbing her bag and leading her to the table.
After setting her up at the table with some colouring things, I head into the kitchen to make something to eat. "Have you had lunch yet Emma?"
"'es, 'uffin wif you."
"That wasn't lunch, that was just a snack."
"Oh. We s'posed ta haf wif Daddy but Mummy goed ta werwk."
"Okay, do you want a sandwich?"
"Ham, chicken, tuna or cheese?"
After making us both a sandwich, I place them down on the table and we start to eat, Emma taking bites in between colouring.
"Mum says to thank you for watching the kid."
"Peri, hey! Yeah tell her it was no bother and to let me know if she needs anyone to watch her again."
"Is she ready?"
"Yeah, I'll just get her, she's colouring in the kitchen. Come in... Emma? Sweetie Peri's here to pick you up." I let Peri into the flat and she follows me to the table by the kitchen.
"Pewi?" Emma looks up surprised.
"Are you ready?"
"I have things to do."
"No go home?"
"Because I said. For God's sake! Are you ready or not?" She snaps. What the hell is she doing?
"Sorry, get your stuff okay?"
"Um, 'tay." She mumbles looking down.
"Come on honey, I'll help you okay?"
"Otay Auntie Si Si." She whispers still not looking up. I grab her bag and crouch down beside her.
"Why don't you put your pencils away and I'll put your book and stuff in your bag yeah?" She nods slowly and starts putting the colouring pencils back into the box one by one.
After a couple of minutes, Emma's stuff is packed neatly in her bag and she's clutching her blanket beside me while I put her bag underneath the pushchair. "I'll help you down with the pushchair okay?" I turn to Peri and she nods.
"Thanks." I take the front of the pushchair and go backwards down the stairs with Peri holding the other side. When we get to the bottom I look up to see Emma holding onto her blanket and the banister and slowly coming down the stairs, sticking her tongue out in concentration. By the time she reaches the bottom of the stairs, Peri is impatiently tapping her foot and looking at her phone. "Right everything she brought with her is in her bag, her coat's under the pushchair too. Can you tell your Mum that I'll ring her later?"
"Bye... See you later Emma, be good for Peri, okay?"
"Otay, bye Auntie Si Si!" She throws her arms around my legs and I pick her up to give her a quick hug goodbye.
"Can you put her in the pushchair please?"
"Sure. In you go sweetheart." I move to sit her in it and she tightens her grip on me.
"No wanna. Don' 'ike."
"Peri wants you in it Em, come on, let go." She whines but does as she's told so I strap her in and grab the other blanket from underneath the pushchair before putting it over her.
"There you go."
"Thanks, bye." Peri then starts to walk away pushing Emma in front of her.
"Pewi? Whewe goin'?"
"I'm meeting my friends."
"I p'ay too?"
"We're not 'playing'."
"What doin' then?"
"I'm just meeting them okay?"
"When go home?"
"I don't know."
"Otay... Um, Pewi?"
"Oh my god! Can you just be quiet until we get there?!"
When we get to the folly, Emma is quietly sucking her thumb, so I park the pushchair near a wall and put the break on before moving to sit down with my friends.
"Hey, who's that?"
"You have a sister? I didn't even know Leela was pregnant."
"It's a long story."
"One you're gonna share or?" Alfie asks.
"No." I roll my eyes and look down.
"How old is she then?" I look up to see Lily looking back at me.
"3, 4, I don't really know."
"You don't know?" They all look at me confused.
"Emma how old are you?" She sits up slightly when she hears her name.
"I neawy four." She says proudly. I turn back to Lily with a shrug and she still looks confused but doesn't say anything else.
"Pewi?" I roll my eyes.
"You'll have to hold it for a bit." She whines slightly but sits back in the pushchair.
"You're not gonna take her?"
"She can wait."
"Pewi..." She whines and I tell her to wait again.
"No you'll have to wait. There isn't a toilet here."
"Just take her over there." Tom suggests.
"No. She'll be fine." I look up and notice that Lily is still watching Emma, so I turn to look as well, seeing her fidgeting in the pushchair then face my friends again. Lily sighs and stands up. "I'll take her. You can't make her wait any longer. Look at her, she can't sit still." I roll my eyes but don't say anything.