Erica skipped to the beat of her made up song of joy. She was told Dominique was at the office waiting for her.
She is early Erica thought, semester vacation is over a week off. All of a sudden she stopped skipping and singing... Daddy is in trouble again she thought silently.
That's why Uncle Stan took me to school this morning I bet, he has never done that before. After all he wasn't really her uncle just daddy's friend. Come to think of it I didn't even see daddy this morning ran through her mind.
If I have to go Stay with that house with all those other kids again I just wont eat! I wont talk. I won't to anything bad, but I wont do anything good either.
By the time she reached her Godmother tears were running down her face.
Dominique quieted her fears Telling her this would be a good surprise one that deserves a celebration. While driving to Wolfy's for one of their famous sundaes. If you could eat a whole one you could get if for free! No one ever did that she knew!
This is where she always went after a ballet recital or for Birthday Breakfasts so Erica knew something special was going on. When told she would be moving in with them for a while in New Orleans, her green eyes were big as vanilla wafers and She dropped a spoon of chocolate Ice cream in her lap.
After a seemingly an hour long minute she spoke as seriously as a seven year old can. "Is my Daddy going to jail again, or is he going to stay with mommy?"
" If he is going to see Mommy Thank-you but no, I want to see my mommy more than anything."
It broke Dominique's heart to see her so sad and confused.
She quickly assured her that daddy was fine and would visit often. She was still not understanding the idea of death, even with a year of therapy.
Oh how she hoped that was true.
Hal signed the custody papers knowing he couldn't care for her in his condition. The fact it took almost no convincing to get him to sign the papers hopefully meant he would really try and get his act together this time.
The possession with intent to sell meth had terrified all of them. Stefan had paid for a good attorney insisting he checked into a treatment facility,and signed Erica's care over to them as part of the bargain.
Dominique thought of how like her mother Erica was, and choked back the sadness of the loss of Patsy.
The anger of knowing they never found the driver that left her to die in that fiery car crash would never go away.
" It will be good for Erica Stan, great opportunity for the kid. I won't ever have to worry they will stick her back in that foster care."
" Damn Stan I am thinking it"s best thing could happen for the kid.
I wont always be haven to get her clothes, and no getting her to school, and being home and awake to pick her up when she gets off. Yeah I think it will be best for me too. Stan I cant believe the luck seems to be changing ."
"Stefan has a great attorney Taking my case. He said he would pay the bill even If I won't let them keep the kid."
"Shit I can believe they charged me with intent to sell !"
"Hell Stan I have only done a half a day. Well twice I messed up and did one extra...
I bagged up for me, not to sell it!"
"Hal slow down, your talking faster than you think
"You're thinking with you habit rather than your head."
"First off will that big check is for Erica you won t get it if shes not here. Think this over, she is all you have of Patsy, You cant give her up like you did the jewelry and stuff you pawned."
" These papers aren't like the ones for temporary care like on vacation, This is for real and it could be forever don't you realize that!"
"Can you trust that if you get clean they will just give her back?"
"Hell Stan, Dominique would do anything for that kid; and after they have her Stefan would give the moon with stars sprinkled on top for desert just to keep her."
"They are the best friend's i ever had, yes I can trust them."
Erica was confused, happy, and sad at the same time.
She took her Music box that played Greensleeves and wound it up. this really isn't the first one Mama gave her, but the memory of Mommy dancing to it put her into that happy place.
Daddy had broken the first one, right after Mommy died. He broke a lot of stuff at first, then just started to stay in his room a lot. For her seventh birthday she got this one to replace it. He also told her to pick some of mommy's Snow globe collection to take with her to New Orleans. Wishing things were like they use to be, and Not understanding most of what happened from the time her mother died, made life confusing.
All she knew was it changed her life for ever.
Her Mommy belonged home with her, not in some heaven place with all the other dead people.
She didn't care about seeing her again someday, she didn't want to wait any more.
She was upset Daddy would give her away, and worried about who would take care of him with her not there.
At the same time she was so glad to be with her God parents, and dad had been worse the past month, he didn't do anything but yell at her or forget she was around.
Erica had memories for the special times she received each of her music boxes.
The ones From when she was to small to remember have cards with the special Thoughts on them written in her mothers handwriting. Thoughts of happier days filled her head, while she carefully wrapped them.