“So what did you decide?”


“Could you get Stan on the line too?” Quinn asked.


“Sure.” Putting the receiver down, Daria shouted for Stan to pick up on the extension.


“Hey Quinn.” Stan said.


“Hi Stan.”


Daria interrupted. “So what did you decide?”


“I’m taking the position. We’re coming back there.”


“That’s great.” Daria said. “So when are you moving?”


“I’ll be there in two weeks. Brad is going to stay here to work out the details on this end. Plus we want Jake to finish out the school year here. It’ll be easier than starting at a new school so late in the year.”


“So what made you finally decide?” Stan asked.


“Well we wanted to be closer to both of our families. It isn’t fair that Jake can’t see either of you or Fred and Diane as often as he would like. And Brad and I miss all of you too.”


Stan smiled. “We miss you too. It will be nice having you here.” Pausing for a second, he continued, “I must say I’m very proud of you. You’re the youngest chief of surgery in the history of the hospital. But there’s nobody more qualified. I know you’ll do well.”


“Thanks. It’s going to be a busy few months when I get there though. I’ll be starting the new position and I need to get Grandma’s house ready.”


“It’s your house Quinn.” Daria interrupted. “She gave it to you. You should consider it your home now.” 


“Well no matter what, it’s been empty for several years. I’m sure it needs some work.”


Stan spoke up. “Well you can count on us to help. After all in another few months I’ll be out of a job.”


“What do you mean?”


“I just turned in my retirement. I’m soon going to be spending most of my time getting on your mom’s nerves.”


“Why do you think I volunteered at the library?” Daria said.


Quinn laughed. “Speaking of that. Mom, I have a job you might like.”


“Oh great. She wants me to volunteer at the hospital.” Daria thought. “What is it?” she asked.


“I’ll be needing a babysitter soon.”


Daria smiled. “I’ll be happy to take care of Jake whenever you need me to.”


“That’s not what I meant.”


“I don’t understand.” Daria said.


“Let me put it this way.” Quinn said. “How willing are you to change diapers?”


She finally understood. “More than willing.” Daria said. “I’ll even buy them if you want.”


Quinn chuckled. “That won’t be necessary. But thanks.”


“So when are you due?” Stan asked.


“About six and a half months?”


Daria couldn’t believe it. “You mean you’ve known this long and haven’t told us?”


“We didn’t tell anyone.”


Daria was more concerned than upset. “Why? If I may ask.”


“We wanted to get the tests back before we let anyone know.”


This concerned Daria. “Tests? It there a problem?”


“No Mom. Everything is fine.”


“Then why did you need tests?” Daria asked.


“When you’re over forty and pregnant it’s a good idea to make sure things are fine. If it’s for no other reason than your own peace of mind.”


“So is everything okay?” Stan asked.


“She’s fine.”


Daria’s eyes got as big as the frames of her glasses. “You’re having a girl! That’s wonderful. Have you decided on a name yet?”


“Actually yes.” Quinn said. “She’s going to be Alexis Anne.”


“It’s a nice name.” Stan said.


Just then Quinn heard her name. “Sorry but I need to go. They just paged me. I’ll call you later. Bye.”


“Okay Quinn. Bye.”


“Bye Quinn.” Stan said.


After hanging up, Stan went into the living room. When Daria saw him she stood up and they hugged each other. As they embraced, Daria said. “She’s finally coming home.”


Two weeks later, Quinn was in Lawndale. When Daria picked her up at the airport there was no mistaking Quinn was pregnant. Maybe Daria was just happy to see her but it looked to her like Quinn had the same glow that she had when she was carrying Jake. After dropping her stuff at Daria and Stan’s house, she wanted to go straight to Glen Oaks Lane to see what was going to be needed to make the house ready again.


As they opened the door, the musty smell made them step back a bit. After working up their nerve, all three entered. Looking around at the empty living room, Quinn wondered where they should start. Deciding where they were standing was as good as any other place she looked at the carpet.


“Well the floor is going to need replacing. This carpet is worn out.”


Daria nodded. “Yes but the actual house is in good shape. Either Stan or I come here once a week to make sure everything is okay.”


“The plumbing and electrical is in good shape.” Stan said. “For the most part painting and carpet is likely all you will need to worry about.”


Quinn smiled. “That’s a relief. With the new position I won’t have a great deal of time.”


Turning to look at Quinn, Daria said, “Don’t worry about that. You tell us what needs to be done and we’ll see that it’s taken care of.”


“Thanks Mom. Now I’d like to look around. I just want to start getting some idea of what I want to do.”


“Of course.” Daria said.


All three separated to look at different areas of the house. As they inspected everything from the garage floor to the bathroom cabinets it became obvious the house was in fair condition in spite of being empty all those years. Walking down the hallway, looking at the empty bedrooms, Daria saw Quinn standing in the master bedroom. She had an odd look on her face.  Going into the room, Daria went to where her daughter was standing.


“Quinn? Is everything okay?”


Nodding, Quinn said, “Yes. I was just wondering.”


“About what?”


“Whether this is the right thing to do.”


“What do you mean?”


Quinn turned to look at Daria. “I mean this was Grandma and Grandpa’s room. Now I’m supposed to sleep here. I don’t know if I can do that. I don’t know if I can make this home. It might be better to just get a different house.”


Daria put her hand on Quinn’s shoulder. “Don’t be silly. Grandma left the house to you hoping you would eventually return. She felt if you did come back this is where you should live. It seems different now because it’s empty. Once everyone is here and you’ve moved in it’ll be different. I know it will be.”


“I guess you’re right.” Glancing around the room for a second, she looked back at her mom.


“I’m about ready to go. How about you?”


Daria nodded. “Sure. Let me go find Stan and we can leave.”


After Daria left, Quinn looked around the empty room again. “I hope she’s right.” she thought, then turned out the light and went downstairs.


The next few months turned out to be very busy. Quinn’s new job turned out to be more than she expected but she soon adapted to her responsibilities. To make sure everything would be ready when Brad and Jake arrived, everybody pitched in. The Martins even drove in on the weekends to assist in the renovations to the house.


They managed to get everything done just in time for the movers to arrive. After all the boxes were moved into the house, everybody once again lent a hand getting everything ready. In short order everything was unpacked and in its proper place.


Quinn stood in the master bedroom once more. This time as she looked around she saw a different scene. The room looked so different with their bed and furniture there. Walking down the hall, she looked in Jake’s room then in the nursery where their daughter would soon be. Going downstairs, she saw Brad, Stan, and Fred watching a baseball game. In the kitchen, Daria and Diane were helping Jake with a puzzle. As she looked around, she smiled. Looking up at her daughter, Daria saw Quinn’s expression.


“Quinn. Is everything okay?” she asked.


Nodding, Quinn said, “Yes. I was just thinking.”


“About what?” Diane asked.


She looked at both of them. “That I’m finally home.”


Just then Alexis kicked.


“Ooh!” Quinn said. “I guess she agrees.”


Quinn was sitting on the sofa in the living room looking at a photo album. Sitting next to her, a little girl looked on with interest as Quinn told the story behind each image. Turning the page, the girl pointed to a picture. “Who’s that?”


“That’s a picture of your great grandma when she was about your age.” Quinn said.


The little girl looked at the picture a little closer. “She’s pretty.”


Quinn closed her eyes and nodded.  “She never knew how beautiful she truly was.” Turning to look at the little girl, Quinn smiled. “I wish you two could have known each other. You remind me of her so much.”


This obviously pleased the little girl. Pointing at the photo, she looked up at Quinn.


“Can I have this picture?”


“I’d like to keep this one, it means a lot to me.” Quinn said. “But I tell you what. If you want one, I’ll have a copy made.”


The little girl nodded and smiled.




Just then a woman came into the room. Looking at the pair, she spoke up.


“I need to break you two up but it’s time for us to go.”


The little girl looked at the woman and frowned.


“But I’m not ready.”


Quinn pulled her close. “It’s okay. You need to go but as soon as school lets out next month you’ll be back for a whole week. Okay?”


The little girl looked at her and smiled again. “Okay.”


After they went outside, they saw Brad was standing next to the car waiting for them. Before the woman got in the car, Quinn hugged her. “It was a nice visit Lexi. Please let us know when you get back.”


“I will Mom.”


Looking at the little girl, Lexi said, “Get in the car. We need to get going.”


The little girl climbed into the back seat. Quinn leaned over to help her buckle up. Before Quinn could get out of the car the little girl wrapped her arms around her neck for one last hug.


“I love you Grandma.” She said.


As the girl drew her closer, Quinn turned her head and kissed her on the cheek. “I love you too Daria.”


The End


As always, Daria belongs to MTV. This was written for my own amusement.