A/N:

Why, hello.

I'm a bit early but there is a reason... I'm on my to Denmark where I'll spend the last two weeks of my summer holiday with my whooooole family (which might get pretty exhausting over the course of two weeks...having four little cousins who constantly want to play) and we were driving from one traffic jam to the next one and we've now (17:00) already spent 11 hours in the car and they're still 2 1/2 hours to go... so I got a lot of time to write and...yes...

Sadly I'm not sure if I'm going to update next Saturday/Sunday because...holidays and all;)

So...in this chapter our dear Mary Poppins will be a little bit more...open towards Ellen and Jane.

Write a comment, I would love to read them:)

Cu

IceK

JOHNHAMMOND1993: Thank you very much;) That's what it's supposed to do...A song for Admiral Boom...oh, he's such a lovely character. I would've loved to see the song in the film itself. Thank you for telling me. It made my day:) And a new reader that comments... love it!;)

DISCLAIMER: I do not own any character that appears, too, in Mary Poppins Returns or Mary Poppins. What I do own is this story and all the characters I created.

Chapter TWELVE

Reality

The sun shone with full power through the window into the dining room as if it would give them a smile and wish them a good morning.

"What are we going to do today, Mary Poppins?", John asked and wiped the crumbs from his lap -unnoticed.

Mary Poppins saw it anyways.

"It looks like you are going to help Ellen clean if you must give her more to do.", the nanny said with a small pout.

John's eyes widened, "But we haven't been on an adventure for so long."

Mary Poppins blinked at the boy in front of her, "Why, really? So, you've been thirteen for so long, too?"

John loweres his gaze.

"No.", he mumbled, "But-"

"No 'but'", the nanny interrupted, "Today is not a day for grand adventures."

She folded her napkin and put it beside her plate.

Annabel crossed her arms in front of her chest, "And why not?"

Mary Poppins took a deep breath -Ellen threw her an amused glance.

"Because", she began slowly, "I said so. And if I hear another word, ..."

She let the unspoken end of her sentence linger in the air as though it was a constant reminder that she could pack her things and leave any time.

Michael cleared his throat at the other end of the table and said with a sigh, "I'm afraid, I have to withdraw into my office for the day. Work tracks me down even on free Saturday mornings."

He stood up and looked at his children with a smile, "Behave."

He bent down to John.

"We don't want to risk that our whole luck sweeps out with a sniff.", he whispered with a look at Mary Poppins who stared back with a deadpan look.

Then he turned around and left the room with fast steps as though something was waiting for him that wasn't as bothering as the thought of a morning full of work.

Mary Poppins looked at the Banks-children, one after the other, silently.

Then she snorted almost inaudibly, "Children, kindly clean off the table. Georgie, your fingers are covered in marmalade. Wash your hands and then off you go into the garden. You don't have to spend the day inside."

Annabel looked at the nanny with a frown, "Do I have to, too? I haven't done my homework yet and-"

But Mary Poppins only looked at the girl in front of her with a stern look and said, "You don't have to spend the day inside and homework are getting done in the garden just as well."

She watched how John put the plates onto each other and balanced the forks and knives on the top of the stack.

"Have fun with...", he lifted his gaze and quickly eyed Mary Poppins and seemed to come to the decision that there wasn't much the two of them could have fun with, "Whatever."

Then he turned around and pulled Georgie with him at his arm, "Annabel."

The girl rolled with her eyes in annoyance.

"How am I supposed to concentrate out there.", she groaned but Mary Poppins knew exactly that this wasn't the problem.

For since the girl had been given her new colour book, she sat at her desk and painted the whole day long.

The nanny threw a quick glance to the hallway and saw how the three children slipped through the front door.

Ellen stood up with a moan and threw Mary Poppins an amused glance, "You do have a special talent when it comes to children."

Mary Poppins slightly turned up her nose, "Thank you, Ellen."

She grabbed the stack of plates from the table and hurried through the door.

Ellen rolled with her eyes.

"Always going for nothing but the very best, that woman.", she murmured and followed the nanny into the kitchen, marmalade and breakfast-cupcakes balancing on her hands.

In the kitchen, Mary Poppins had already let water into the sink, the sleeves of her good blouse -of course, Mary Poppins possessed nothing but good blouses-rolled up and gently shoved the dishes into the hot water.

To give the devil the due, Ellen thought as she watched her with knit eyebrows, even though Mary Poppins was a very... well, proper woman, she became another person as soon as their was work to be done.

The Mary Poppins that had just sent the children into the garden would never have gotten the idea to wash the dirty dishes.

But now; here she was with her arms to the elbows in the water, washing the plates.

"Ellen, lend me a hand for drying, if you please.", Mary Poppins said and put the first plate on the counter.

Quickly Ellen made two steps forwards and picked up the towel from the table.

She smiled calmly when she started drying the first plate.

"Oh, this reminds me of the old times.", she said, "My mother and I always did the dishes together."

She looked at Mary Poppins and lightly tilted her head to one side, "Truth to be told, you somehow remind me of her."

The nanny stood still for a moment, "Of whom?"

Ellen took the second plate from the counter, "Of my mother."

Mary Poppins' eyes widened.

"I remind you of your mother?", she exclaimed and it sounded almost shocked.

She sniffed, "Well, thank you very much."

When she put the next plate down onto the counter, it crashed.

Ellen flinched back and looked at Mary Poppins in shock.

"Is-"

But just then kitchen door was pushed open with such power that it slammed against the wall and Mary Poppins and Ellen turned around and already wanted to run, fully convinced that something terrible must have happened to one of the children.

But it was just Jane who stood there. Just Jane, with wide eyes and heavy breaths.

"Ellen.", she said and closed the door, "Mary Poppins, it's good that you're here, too."

The nanny arched an eyebrow, "I should certainly hope so."

Ellen put away plate and towel and pointed at a chair for Jane to sit down whilst Mary Poppins quickly dried her hands, "What's going on?"

Jane sank onto the chair, breathless, and stared at her hands that laid folded in her lap.

"Oh, so much.", she started and thankfully took the glass of water from Mary Poppins' hands, "Und I just didn't know what to do and so I just came here. I thought if I'm lucky Ellen isn't too busy but to meet you both is...a miracle."

She quickly took a sip, "Oh, I don't know what to say. It's all so sudden and I just wasn't prepared. Which doesn't mean that I don't want -I'm just so..."

Mary Poppins blinked, "Confused?"

But Jane shook her head, put the glass onto the kitchen counter and suddenly took Mary Poppins' hands.

"Happy.", Jane said and the broad grin on her face couldn't tell something different.

Mary Poppins only stared onto her hands in Jane's. Then she looked up and her lips formed to a surprised 'oh'.

"Jack...?"

Jane nodded fiercely and Ellen stood beside them without having a clue, "What is going on with Jack?"

Jane looked up to the housekeeper and smiled, her eyes slowly watering, "He proposed."

Ellen's face brightened up and a smile crept onto her lips, "Oh, Jane! How wonderful."

Jane nodded and let go of Mary Poppins' hands, "And how it is."

Ellen sat down onto another chair, "So? What did you say?"

Jane averted her eyes, "No-" -Ellen whimpered in shock and Mary Poppins' eyes widened- "Well, yes, well..."

Jane shook her head and took another sip of her water, "I was just so..."

"Confused?", Mary Poppins asked and Jane nodded.

"You see, I wasn't prepared at all. I'd just returned from the bathroom, we'd done the dishes together and then sat down in the salon and read.", Jane licked her dry lips, "Well, I read. And then Jack suddenly said 'We should marry, don't you think?' But I was just so deeply in thoughts that I didn't really listen and I asked what he'd said and then he knelt down and..."

Jane sniffed slightly.

She lifted her right hand and held it so that Ellen and Mary Poppins could see the ring on her ring finger; a silver ring with a small, shimmering stone on it.

"It belonged to Jack's mother. It's the only thing he still has left from her belongings..."

Mary Poppins let out a small, happy sigh, "Congratulations, Jane. It's taken long enough."

Ellen nodded in agreement, "Certainly. I'd expected this conversation years ago."

Jane averted her eyes, "I'm feeling as though everything happens so fast. It feels as if we'd just moved together and now we're engaged-"

A sob fled from her lips and she pressed the ringed hand on her mouth.

Mary Poppins and Ellen looked at each other in worry, "What is it?"

Jane only shook her head and waited for herself to calm down.

"It's just...", she began and smiled, her voice heavy with tears, "I've never said it aloud and only now...now it's getting real."

And by all sudden, Jane jumped up from her chair and fell into Mary Poppins' arms.

"Oh, Mary Poppins, I'm so glad that you're here. The whole time I had this weird feeling of Jack...planning something. But it seemed as though he didn't dare to. And then, the day you returned, he was home so late and he was all secretively and I'm sure he picked up the ring back then and-", another sob erupted from her throat and she pulled herself closer into Mary Poppins' arms, "If it wasn't for you, he'd never have found the courage."

She let go of the nanny, sank down onto her chair and took a sip of her water.

Mary Poppins had both eyebrows raised, "I'm glad to have been an...inspiration."

She smiled slightly and sat down.

Ellen put a hand onto Jane's, "I'm happy for you two, Jane. You've waited so long for the right one to come."

Her eyes laid on Mary Poppins.

"I'd really like to know what it is about you.", she said.

Mary Poppins blinked, "What should it be about me?"

Ellen tilted her head, "Men."

"Good heaven's, no.", the nanny exclaimed and sat up straight.

Jane knit her brows together, "Why not?"

Mary Poppins shook her head.

Then she sighed slightly, "My job can't be done with something like that. No one would hire a nanny with man and children."

Ellen's face brightened up a little bit, "So there do is someone?"

But Mary Poppins shook her head once again, "There was someone. A long time ago."

Jane cocked her head.

She eyed Mary Poppins for a moment, "Did you were a couple? Engaged?"

Mary Poppins gave the two women a smile. It was a sad smile, full of pain, "Neither. He never knew -that he was that important to me. Let's say I've wasted my chance."

She lowered her gaze for a short second and then looked Jane straight into the eyes, "Not once again have I felt like that for a man. It was short-lived what I felt for him. I could never have made him happy -he could never have made me happy. It simply shouldn't be. I'd made a mistake, I'm over it since a long time ago."

Ellen and Jane looked equally sad but Mary Poppins seemed to take control quickly and a smile crept onto her lips, "You shouldn't dwell on the past. What has happened, has happened."

She stood up and turned to the sink to clean the other plates.

Jane cleared her throat, "I-I think I'll make my way home. I'm sure I'm already missed."

She stood up, "Goodbye."

And with that she disappeared through the back door into the garden.

The children took the opportunity to slip back into the house.

"Why was Auntie Jane here?", Georgie asked curiously.

Mary Poppins put her hands on her hips, "I thought I'd been quite clear."

Ellen knit her brows together.

The nanny acted completely different from just seconda ago.

"Jane had to talk to us.", Ellen explained with a side look at Mary Poppins and waved at the children to go outside again.

She couldn't quite get rid of the feeling that the Mary Poppins that had told them of her past love was not the Mary Poppins the children caught sight of quite often.

But I don't want it.

No, I can't want it anymore.

~Defying Gravity, WICKED, Idina Menzel