Chapter Ninety-Seven

"He's so excited to meet you. The nurses said they haven't seen him this happy for a long time. They just want to phone you up at some point and talk to you personally but it's all just procedure as far as I know" Liam was explaining to Henrietta.

This news was wonderful to hear. Henrietta didn't know what to say, she was just relieved everything was going to plan in regards to this. Alex being excited to meet her was an added bonus. Leanna was sat besides her by this point as well, she was going to see him next week as well. The reason she didn't go with her father this week as usual was because he wanted to tell him the news on his own.

"I don't know what to say...Just thank you" Henrietta managed to reply.

"No need to thank me, he's your grandson and you have a right to see him as much as we do. I just wish it was done sooner" Liam told her.

"Well that doesn't matter now. What's done is done"

Leanna rolled her eyes slightly however she was secretly happy too. Alex took the news well then. Thank goodness for that, they couldn't take anymore setbacks. So the child's relaxed attitude made them more relaxed in turn. Things might finally be looking up for them after years of heartbreak and regret.

"Exactly...I tell you what. As a treat, I will order us a takeaway. How does that sound?" Liam then asked, now looking towards his daughter.

"It sounds like calories" Leanna teased.

"For once I do not care" Liam declared.

Before getting up and going towards the kitchen. Pulling open the drawers for the takeaway menu and walking back over with it as he plonked himself next to Leanna. He looked up towards Henrietta and assured her..."Everything will be okay"

"I know" Henrietta simply answered.

She was still in a really bad state but she chose not to show it. Liam and Leanna were happy right now and she wouldn't want to burden them with her sorrow. She just had to try and focus on the positives. That being that she has a grandson to meet and a grandson who's excited to meet her (she's never had that before). She felt like she has been given a second chance in life.

...

Dawn Taylor was doing a rather last-minute shop in Leeds. It was around 9pm by this point and she didn't like going out this late anymore (mainly because her son Lucas needed her for bedtime) but she was running behind a bit. She was currently on her own as she put some shopping in her car boot. A bottle falling on the floor made her look up (for a second, she thought it was Malone). Though it wasn't as she just looked over towards the source of the sound. Some girl was sitting with her back against the supermarket car park wall. For a spit second, Dawn could see herself four years ago. Drugged, alone and not knowing what to do with herself. Though she forced herself to leave it, even when this girl stood up and began staggering in her direction. Summer was always lighter, wasn't it? So it wasn't that dark and she saw her face as she got closer. She knew her from somewhere but she couldn't quite place it. This girl was Kelly and she knew Dawn from somewhere too, they use to run in the same circles. Both hung out in the same rotten area and pubs once upon a time with the other 'call-girls and druggies'.

"You...Don't we know each other?" Kelly asked in a slurring tone of voice.

Dawn could tell she was drunk and she wishes she didn't recognise her. This was all she needed!

"I think so but erm...I'm not into whatever you're into anymore" Dawn simply replied.

Unlocking her car door as she prepared to just get in and drive away. Though as the memories got less fuzzy, the harder it was for her to just go. Dawn knew who this was, not a lot of details mind but she remembered her nickname 'Baby Spice'. So-called because she was the youngest of that group of girls who hung out in this area of Leeds and the youngest one who took drugs. Not a very original nickname but they weren't exactly thinking long and hard about that sort of stuff, it was just easy to remember.

"You look a wreck" Dawn admitted with a sigh as she turned back towards her.

"You don't"

"Well I've changed, haven't I? Look , I'm not into any of that anymore. So you're wasting your time talking to me these days"

"I've been kicked out again. My boyfriend died, didn't he? So his mum threw me out because she found me taking. His family destroyed me...Now I got nothing left. Not even our old mates"

"I'm sorry to hear that and to be honest, thank your lucky stars you don't speak to our old mates. Most of them are either dead or still a mess" Dawn paused slightly however as she could see how young she looked, so she asked..."How old are you now?"

"20"

"Thought so...Do you not have your mum's to go back to? You hang out in the streets any later and you will get attention you don't want"

"My mum don't want me back...She hates my guts! Can you give me some money? I need something to take the edge off"

Dawn just gave a sad laugh. She must be joking, she wasn't giving money out just so someone could score. She really wasn't in that world anymore, she's done so much hard to work to get out of it. So the answer was no, she wasn't going to give her money to take the 'edge off'.

"No way...I'm not doing that" Dawn told her firmly.

"Fine. I will get it somewhere else"

"Of some bloke you mean? That's really sad...When you went, me and the girls thought you died or something. We kept looking for your name in the local newspaper. Was this boyfriend of yours that old guy who use to come in?" Dawn questioned.

That 'old guy' was the now dead Ethan Stepney. Dawn didn't know him or even his name but she did remember his face. How he would always come in for Kelly, he never shown interest in the older girls. In fact he seemed disinterested in anyone that wasn't Kelly! Dawn just remembers him wearing some old leather jacket. He was an 'ugly tosser' as she and her friends use to describe him as.

"So what if it were" Kelly replied in a sad tone of voice.

"Maybe cause he was older enough to be your dad"

"He was lovely actually! He made me go cold turkey and I got off the stuff! Now I'm back to square one. You know what? Just drive away and leave me alone"

Dawn's eyes widened at this as she watched the girl storm away. Didn't take long for Kelly to stop and sit down again. This time with her back against the trolley storage unit as she turned away from Dawn. She still acted like she was sixteen, that's for sure. She pretty much knew this girl was not a threat by this point. The woman walked towards her again for she would feel bad leaving her.

"Want to stay at mine for the night? The couch is free" Dawn suggested.

"No"

"Oh come on...'Baby Spice'...God, that nickname was bad. What did they call me? Midnight or something? We had rubbish code names, no wonder the police found us every week"

"It's Kelly Tanner"

"That's right...I'm Dawn"

Saying their real names to each other confirmed it. Yes, they did know each other back then. Poor Kelly was sort of like the little sister of the group. The older girls tried their best to make sure she wasn't hurt but there was only so much they could do. Didn't help that they were on drugs and thus unreliable. Ethan got his claws into her anyway and she taken away from them after a year.

"I remember" Kelly confirmed.

"Come on then. It's just my dad, my son and Harriet at home. You can kip on the couch. My boyfriend pops round sometimes too but erm...They be fine with you staying for the night" Dawn insisted.

They wouldn't be really but she wasn't going to leave a vulnerable 20 year old girl on the streets. She's been there and thus she knew it wasn't safe. Dawn was flaunting the rules a bit here but she's never been one for rules. Kelly finally getting up as followed her to the car and got in the seat next to her.

"Just for one night" Dawn repeated; not wanting her to get the wrong idea.

"As if I wanna stay on your manky couch for more than one night anyway"

"Hey! It's not manky, it's clean. Like I said, I've changed. Even my house is better now, trust me"

Kelly just gave a shrug in response. Dawn tutted before starting the car and driving away into the distance. Back to Emmerdale.

...

Tracy was sat up in her house with Alicia and Leyla. Watching televison and chilling out, the sisters didn't know Tracy was pregnant yet. She really wasn't going to broadcast the news around the village yet. Mainly because she didn't want David to hear about it, this would bring back bad memories for him and he felt bad enough. They were watching some horror movie.

"God...If I saw a figure like that in the dark then I would throw a vase at it" Leyla declared. Taking a bite from a crisp.

Making her sister and friend just smirk. They could well believe Leyla doing that however thankfully she had nothing like that to worry about. Tracy was offered wine but she declined (which was strange for her). Tracy was worried they would soon twig onto the fact she was pregnant as she would no longer be drinking.

"Me and Nate are not drinking anymore" Tracy told them with a nervous smile.

"Why?" Leyla asked.

"Because...We want to get fit"

"You're eating a pack of Dorito's and dips, Tracy. You're hardly keeping fit, so you may as well enjoy a glass of wine like me and Alicia"

"I don't have to drink if I don't want"

"Fine...Suit yourself"

Though as soon as Leyla said this, she looked back towards Tracy. She didn't want to drink and that can only mean one thing. Though it seemed a bit rushed, didn't it? She and Nate only been dating for a few months. So this must be an accident and Leyla had sort of figured it out all on her own.

"You're pregnant, aren't ya?" Leyla asked suddenly.

"No" Tracy replied in an unconvincing tone of voice.

"Oh my God...you are!" Alicia chimed in.

"Shush!" Tracy demanded.

Hiding her face from them now but the damage was done. The sisters worked it out by asking one question (Do you want a drink?). Silence followed this, Leyla biting her top lip as she looked back towards Tracy and asked her...

"Are you though?"

"Yes but don't tell anyone. Me and Nate want to keep it quiet for now" Tracy confirmed.

"That was quick"

"Well we didn't plan it or 'owt. Please Leyla, you gotta keep quiet. David is going through a difficult time right now, isn't he? I know this should be about me but I don't get that luxury, so at least keep it quiet for the time being"

"Mum's the word"

Tracy just rolled her eyes at this remark.

...

TBC