This has been fun but time to wrap it up.
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Chapter 6 - Instruction Manuals
Mama Star's eleven-year-old is still listening but he's not enjoying the story as much as he did at first.
"So you didn't even have real fireworks? Sounds kinda lame."
"Hey! Uncle Tom's fireworks were really good, he made them all different colors and everything. I'd like to see you make fireworks. Now, do you want me to finish or should I stop there?"
"Finish I guess, I just figured you'd be fighting bad guys at some point. I like the stories where you and dad were in crazy battles way better than this mushy love and growing up stuff."
"Not every moment of my teenage life was an action packed adventure kiddo."
"But you had magic and swords and-and stuff attacking all the time. I bet it could have been if you wanted it to be. I know once I'm in high school I'm going to have exciting teenage adventures all the time."
"Really? You can keep thinking that if you want but you're going to be very disappointed once you get there. Very disappointed. Anyway, after talking to your dad in the castle ruins..."
For the first thirteen days after prom members of the Butterfly and Diaz families are in constant contact. Mostly it's the teenagers making video calls but there are also several evenings where everyone gathered. The first is a semi-formal dinner to officially announce the engagement, second is the celebration of Mariposa's birthday, and third a backyard cookout marking the coming end of the school year. The highlight however is on the last day when they all gathered for Star's graduation. Not only is there a standing ovation when the young woman receives her diploma, the families are also treated to a stellar class president speech that beautifully expresses not only Star's personal transformation but also the transformation of the crazy world they lived in.
Despite all of this time together, Moon's instructions are enforced and the two teenagers are not allowed to be alone for more than a few short minutes. Finally at the end of the fourteenth day the restrictions are lifted and Star is given the green light to go back to living with the Diaz family.
Like every night since the toddler's birthday, Ms. Diaz does a final check on Mariposa to make sure she hasn't rolled out of her new big girl bed. After finding her youngest drooling on the blankets Angie lightly taps on her son's doorframe thinking that she should check-in with her oldest 'baby' before heading back downstairs.
"Just a second."
Marco, who stands a few inches taller than his mother, opens the door and steps out into the hall. With the entrance open Angie pokes her head inside to see Star asleep. At the other end of the room Marco's desk lamp and laptop are on and sitting next to them are several open notebooks.
"Hey mom, everything okay?"
"Everything's fine. I just wanted to make sure you two are good. Looks like your partner in crime is all set even though we couldn't find her eye mask. I even checked the fridge."
"Yeah, I think Star is good without it tonight. She ended up doing some reading and if you ask me, that double-sized Teen Princess wedding edition is more than enough to knock anyone out." The mother and son chuckled slightly before Marco continued talking. "Hey, I forgot to say thanks for letting Star come back tonight."
"Could I really keep my future daughter-in-law away?"
"Well you could but I'm really glad you didn't."
Angie raised an eyebrow as she redirected the conversation. "So, what are you working on over there? I thought school was over?" To emphasize the point, she looked directly at the laptop.
"School is over but remember that paper I did on better ways to integrate Mewni and Earth? I had some new ideas I wanted to add and I'm thinking about working on it over the summer as a side project."
"Hun, don't you work hard enough during the school year? I'm not sure how happy Star is going to be if you're writing papers all a the time."
"Well, she won't be too happy but she's scared about what we're going to do after college. With her whole life growing up being built around magic and then having to give that up, I want her to have something to take its place that she'll find fulfilling. I've spent a lot of time these last two weeks thinking about things Star enjoys and I keep coming back to how much she likes helping people. You should have seen back on Mewni when we were working on the petition for monster rights. Star's idea was to get all the young nobility to..."
Their quiet conversation suddenly stops when there are sounds of someone getting out of bed. Looking in, they spot a pajamaed blonde shuffling to the other side of the room. With her eye's completely shut Star opens the closet, pulls the closest red hoodie off a hanger, and then slowly makes her way back under the covers. Once settled the sleepwalker smiles while rubbing a cheek against her fiancé's favorite outerwear. All the mother and son can do is watch and smile.
"I'm expecting grandchildren, Mr. Butterfly."
"Mom! You know we aren't getting married for at least a few years! There's no way we're having kids before then and-and we haven't even talked about children yet."
"Well, don't be surprised if it comes up. I thought Star said you wanted a thousand babies but maybe I misheard."
Not enjoying the teasing, Marco just shook his head. "We're keeping our last names by the way."
"Are you sure you want to do that? This might be your last chance for your initials to stop spelling MUD."
"Is MUB or MUDB that much better?"
The auburn haired mom thought about it for a moment and just smiled. "I love you and I'm done being Moon's snitch. I'd like it if you waited until you're both eighteen but if you don't...be smart, be safe, and make sure we aren't home."
"Good night mom! Love you too!"
"Night." After a quick hug Angie begins to head downstairs.
"Wait mom, one more thing. I don't know what you said exactly but thank you for going over to see Moon and River on prom night. I think it really helped get them to be okay with our off-campus college apartment plan."
"Hey, you're not the only one who can fix things. We just gave Moon some perspective since she hasn't been living with the two of you like your dad and I have. I just hope we don't have to do that too often, you have no idea how many times now I've heard Moon's story about Star's corn diapers."
"Please, I do NOT want to imagine Star in diapers. But I did want to ask you something that I can't figure out. Moon was good with Star and I living in rooms next to each other or in the same room on-and-off since...well...forever. Moon was also fine with Star going on long trips without a chaperone even back when she was dating Tom. On one hand I know why she and River got upset because of our...ah...incident...but at the same time they were young once. They had to have known that if we were together this long something might eventually happen."
"True but you kids don't exactly come with instruction manuals. When you have children there are a lot of choices to make and no matter how much you think you have figured out, you're never really sure how things are going to end up. For raising you, your father and I took the route of letting you explore the world and make decisions for yourself. But doing that came with risks that were difficult to accept. One of the big ones your dad and I talked about all the time, do we let you go on adventures with Star when we knew you could get seriously hurt. As for boy-girl trouble, we thought something inappropriate could happen once you two started hugging all the time. Then when Star announced to everyone her feelings for you we knew there was a chance that you two might do something you were too young for, and yet we still let you go live with her on Mewni."
The young man nodded his head as he thought about what his parents must have been debating at the time.
"Looking back, I think you're a better person because we didn't get in the way. It gave you a chance to make some import decisions and I bet you learned a lot from that. As for Moon and River, I can't speak for them but I would guess that they've let Star have all this time with you because you're a good influence. Also if they tried to keep her from doing what she wanted, she would have rebelled against them at some point. That might have turned into her making a lot of really poor life choices. If I was to guess, Moon thought your incident was a little over the line of what's acceptable so her grounding Star was an attempt to reestablish some control."
Marco gave full attention to his mother's words.
"Did your father and I make all the right choices with you? Did Moon and River make the right decision by grounding Star?" Angie gave a shrug. "What I do know is that everyone wants you two to grow up to be happy healthy adults. Sadly there's no magic to make sure that happens. Instead all we can do is be there when you need help, steer you right when we see you're going the wrong way, and forgive you when you make mistakes."
"Wow. I never really thought about a parent's perspective on all this. For what Moon was thinking, you're probably right."
"Maybe. Or maybe they had other reasons. I'd ask Moon but like I said, I don't want to hear any more stories about corn diaper blowouts."
The young man shivered at the thought but then smiled slightly as he turned back to his mom. "Thank you for trusting me. I'm really glad you did."
"We trusted you both, still do. Just wait until you have kids, you'll have to deal with all this too. By the way, I've always been a Starco fan. I just don't know how you keep up with her. Your dad, he used to be all Tomstar but since you two started dating you've completely won him over."
"I don't think I'm going to tell Star about that."
"You've always been a smart kid. Hey, I think you should take Star up on that idea of flying Nachos up and down the coast for a few weeks this summer. You won't have to worry about any parents coming home early. Just remember..." Angie gave her son a two fingered poke to the chest. "...no grandchildren YET."
"Good night mom!"
"Night Mr. Butterfly."
Star & Marco
Once Angie is downstairs, the former knight shakes his head while walking back inside to turn off his desk lamp. Next Marco opens the curtains slightly and checks to make sure none of the moons are in any way bloodish. Satisfied that there are no celestial curses to worry about, he ignores the partially deflated air mattress leaning against the wall that he is supposed to use when Star is over and instead carefully slips under the bedcovers. While getting in he does his best not to disturbed the beautiful young woman that he's been thinking about constantly for the past two weeks. Once settled, Marco places an arm around her waist and a soft kiss on her uncovered shoulder. Unexpectedly, before his lips can pull away, he hears a soft familiar voice.
"...psst. You're mom's totally gone right?"
"Wha!? Seriously? Have you been pretending to be asleep this whole time?"
"Shhhh...we don't want to wake anyone."
"You faked sleepwalking didn't you? Did you hear everything my mom and I just talked about? If you were up this whole time waiting for me, why didn't you call me to bed?"
"You ask -way- too many questions Mr. Butterfly. How about..." Star turned over slightly to face him making her devious smile easily visible in the moonlight. "...instead of talking, let's see if we can earn a Don't-Make-Any-Noise makeout stripe or maybe we can lay here and talk about when we're finally going to go questing."
"Ah, can we do both?"
"Why yes Mr. Butterfly, we can totally do both."
Slowly leaning into each other the mess-up twins giggle just before their lips meet. Several minutes into their makeout adventure, while trying to get as close as possible, Star pulls at the hoodie she had taken out of the closet and tosses it off the bed. The red outerwear arches high in the air before coming down on her fiancé's desk where it catches the desk lamp and knocks it to the floor with a loud crash.
Rushing to make sure the noise wasn't Mariposa rolling out of bed, Angie makes it halfway up the steps before hearing the teens. It doesn't take her long to realize that they are laughing, smacking each other with pillows, and the boy who 'once wore a helmet in the shower' is begging 'a magical princess from another dimension' for mercy followed by telling her how much he loves her. The concerned mother considers tapping on the door one last time but instead makes the parenting decision that it would be best to quietly walk back downstairs. Her engaged babies are in love and although she could suggest that they go to sleep, now it's time for them to begin making decisions about their next big adventure all on their own.
Back in the present, Star's eleven-year-old son gives his mother a disappointed look.
"Mom, seriously!? Once upon a time you got in trouble because dad ate some cake, you pretended a wedding dress was a prom dress, and you said something dumb that made daddy cry. Then at your prom you danced and talked to your friends. After prom you say sorry to dad before asking him to marry you and then there are lame fireworks. Finally once you weren't grounded you and dad spent the summer together before starting college. That's the whole story!? There's no way that's everything, you must be hiding all the important stuff!"
"How about I grew up a lot around the time of prom. With your father's help I realized that I was ready to become an adult and part of being an adult means coming face-to-face with my fears & flaws and figuring out how to best address them. That was also around the time I learned that parents don't always know what they're doing. However, your grandparents still made a lot of good choices that helped your father and I became the best people we could be. Oh, there is one detail I can share. After prom I started using my calendar app. That ended up making your father super happy."
"But mom, there was all this build up! I thought the story was going to be way more exciting."
"Knowing your dad was ready to commit to being with me forever was super exciting. I do have to say, looking back I was being a bit of a worrywart or bogbeast or whatever you want to call it. At seventeen we really were too young to be getting engaged but at least we were smart and waited five years before getting married. We should have just focused on being teenagers but luckily no one gave us too hard of a time about it. Amazingly it all worked out for the best."
"But there were no battles? No big secrets? No one lost a limb? Not one thing that was fun?"
"Maybe I'll tell you a few secrets when you're older but it's best if most of the details stay with your dad and I."
"Then I'm going to make up my own story that goes with the pictures. I'm going to say that you and dad went to the Prom-Dimension. There you fought all these bad guys but dad was too busy throwing punches to hang out with you. When he saw that you were upset he let you do the final bossfight all by yourself. After that you and daddy got married."
"You know what, your story is good too."
After a hug and kiss from Mama Star, the youngest Butterfly reluctantly goes back to packing for their move to Butterfly Castle. As the boy feared, putting things into boxes did indeed turn his brain into pudding. The thirty-six year old mom however only stays to help for a few minutes before sneaking off to her bedroom with something important on her mind. In her walk-in Closet of Secrets she begins moving piles of clothing and crafting supplies until she finds an old Hula-hoop leaning against the back wall. Other than a few faded stickers it still looked exactly the way she remembered.
"We might not bring everything to the castle but there is no way we're forgetting you."
That's it folks, that was the last chapter. Thanks for reading. My ask of you, please don't take this story as hating on Star. She is 100% awesome. This is more about showing flaws and plot threads that were never fully explored during the show.
If you end up liking this I suggest you click on my profile and check out 'Starco vs Parenthood' if you haven't already. I plan on adding more related stories there and maybe I'll write another multi-chapter series like this. Was this a good final chapter? Did you like the story overall? Also, feel free to let me know what you would like to see more of in the future.
One last favor, if you did like this please mark it as a favorite so other people can find it too. There are a lot of SVTFOE series out there and it's easy for an individual story to get lost in all the noise.
Thank you! - Olin
A big thanks goes out to Ngame for doing a preview read and sending me a bunch of constructive feedback. He helped me not only fix the ten different ways I misspelled Ferguson, he also got me focusing on a number of ideas that weren't quite working in previous versions.
I'd also like to thank everyone who left a comment, your feedback REALLY helps with the motivation.
Star vs. the Forces of Evil was created by Daron Nefcy and is owned by Disney. To everyone connected to SVTFOE, thank you! This story was dedicated to all the Stars and Marcos out in our world who have yet to meet each other, I'm still rooting for you.