PL: Parenting, Pt. I

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PL: Parenting, Pt. I

Postby Iar Edra » Mon Jan 19, 2015 5:46 pm

PL: Parenting Pt. I
The doors to their quarters swished open, and in walked Edra and Karissa. Edra pushed her daughter ahead of her. "Into the bath with you, child. I think you pulled more dirt out of the gardens than you did vegetables." The little girl giggled as she ran toward the washroom, causing Edra to smile. She followed, and when she reached the washroom herself, she found Karissa getting ready, so she turned on the water and waited until it reached the right temperature. "Alright, in."
Karissa climbed into the tub and held her hands over her eyes as Edra sprayed her down, still giggling. Once the loose dirt was washed off Edra plugged the drain and let the tub fill to about 6 inches. As she did Karissa grabbed a couple bath toys from the corner hammock and dropped them into the tub before sitting down. Although, some of her toys were functional now, so she grabbed her lion-shaped sponge and held it out so Edra could squeeze soap onto it. Then she dunked the sponge in the water and squeezed it over and over until suds emerged from the pores. Then she squeezed it a few more times, fascinated by the suds. Once she was finished being entertained by the suds, she began washing her arms.
Meanwhile, Edra had put a dab of shampoo in her hands and began washing her daughter's long blonde hair. It lathered up, and when she was done, she piled it on top of Karissa's head. Karissa turned to look at her she touched the tip of her daughter's nose with a lather-covered finger, then grinned as Karissa scrunched up her nose and shook her head.
"Momma, stop." She complained.
Edra chuckled and teased her. "I thought your nose still needed to be washed."
"Okay, Squeakers, I'll be right back. No jumping around, got it?"
Karissa nodded, answering in an imitation of her mother, "Got it!"
Edra stood and headed for the living room, leaving the door open so she could hear any noises. She approached the replicator, "Ice water." And when that materialized, "An apple juice in a kiddie cup." While working in the garden, she realized she didn't bring anything to drink, and had felt parched since before they finished. Experience told her if she brought something back, Karissa would undoubtedly want some of it, so she had gotten the girl her own drink. As she crossed the room she caught sight of her work still piled on her desk a d sighed. She supposed weedling down that stack of PADDs would be her chore for the night.
When she returned, she let Karissa play for a few more minutes before grabbing the spray nozzle again. "Alright, close your eyes tight and take a deep breath."
By now Karissa knew this meant she was getting her hair rinsed out, and if she didn't want shampoo in her eyes, she'd better do as her mother said. When she scrunched her eyes close as tight as she could, and made a show of breathing in and holding it, Edra squirted her lightly in the face for half a second. The unexpected water made Karissa giggle and release the breath she'd taken. "Momma!" She admonished again.
"Alright, alright," Edra laughed. "Hold your breath."
Karissa did just that, and this time Edra did rinse her hair out. When she was done with her hair, Edra told her to stand up, and rinsed the rest of the soap off of her. The water got turned off when she was done and Edra grabbed the oversized towel and wrapped it around Karissa. She lifted her out of the tub and began drying her off. Throwing part of the towel over her head, she dried her hair off, shaking her head around like a bobble-head doll. Karissa played along, making a "Whoa-whoa-whoa" noise in time with the bobbing, until she was laughing at herself.
Edra pulled the towel down so she could see Karissa's face. "Hey! I knew there was a Squeakers somewhere under all that dirt!" Karissa giggled. "Alright, finish drying off in your room. You know what your wearing?"
Karissa nodded.
"You stay in your room and play there. I'll come get you after I clean up."
Karissa put her hands on either side of her face, "Is there a Momma under the dirt?"
Edra laughed. She was entertained by many things her daughter said at this age. "Yes, smartypants...somewhere in here. Now go."
"M'kay." She answered as she left the washroom.
Edra followed her out to make sure the outer doors to their quarters were locked, then returned to take her own shower, although she may have already gotten one in the process of getting her daughter cleaned off.
10 minutes later she stepped out, with one towel wrapped around her and a second in her hands drying her hair. She took a quick glance into Karissa's bedroom, a small room off of her own. She saw her towel on the floor, but her daughter was no where to be seen. She walked out to the living area, scanning for her. When she got about halfway across the room, she spied the girl in her office, with PADDs scattered on the floor around her, except for one in her hand, and the other reaching up over her head for the next stack. She'd had those PADDs in order! "Karissa Rachel!"
Karissa froze and looked at her mother, guilty look on her face. Her reaching hand slowly came back to her side.
"What are you doing?"
"I...wan'ed to play."
Edra held her hand out, and Karissa handed back the PADD she was holding. "Are these yours?" She asked her daughter.
Karissa looked at the floor, "No."
"We've talked about playing with things that aren't yours! What did we say?"
"That I hafta ask."
"And did you ask if you could play with them?"
"Did you know that these are not toys?"
"I need these for work. Now, I hope they're not messed up. When you got done with your bath, what did I tell you!?"
A pause, "I dunno."
"I told you to go play in your room."
"But I was bored in there!"
"Then it will make a good place for your punishment. Now go back to your room until dinner." Edra turned to begin picking the PADDS up off the floor.
Until a stubborn little voice replied, "I don't wanna!"
She turned back around. "Excuse me?"
Karissa wasnt quite as stand-offish this time, maybe sensing she shouldn't have gone so far. "I don't wanna go to my room. It's BOR-ing."
This was a first. Karissa had never talked back to her before. Edra supposed she was at the age of seeing how much she could get away with. She decided if she didn't nip this in the bud now, it would only get worse. "I don't care. Punishment is not supposed to be fun. Now go to your room, and if you disobey me again, you won't get any dinner."
As her daughter looked up at her, Edra noticed her lip start to quiver, and the next thing she knew, Karissa began wailing. Realizing this to be just a temper tantrum, she simply said "Go." When she continued to stand there, Edra decided not to give the tantrum any attention and turned, kneeling down to pick up the scattered PADDs. Eventually she heard the sobs depart, and end altogether before she reached her room. She did look to make sure she went to her room this time. As she gathered the last few PADDs behind her, she put the entire stack on her desk. Now she had to reorganize these, though it wouldn't take too long. At least Karissa hadn't altered any of the information.
As she reordered them she thought about what might be for dinner. It only took her about 5 minutes to finish. With that done, she returned to the living room and gathered the things needed to set the dinner table for both of them.
She headed back to Karissa's room to pass her dinner idea on. It was one of her daughter's favorite meals, so she didn't anticipate any objection. As the doors to her daughter's room opened she started, "How does S'getti sound..." Before she could finish she noticed the look on the girl's face. It was the same expression as when she got caught in the office. And she had one hand hidden conspicuously on the other side of her bed. "What have you got?"
A thump. "Nothing."
Edra raised an eyebrow. Now she was lying? "Pick it up."
Slowly, she got off her bed and picked up the object.
"Bring it here."
Karissa did as she was told, very aware that she was in trouble. And before she handed it over, Edra realized it was a PADD that she was hiding. She must have snuck it away when Edra had turned her back on her. She asked her calmly but pointedly, "You want to tell me why you took this when I just got done telling you it's not a toy?"
"I wanted to play games."
Now this was getting frustrating, and it showed in her tone. "What part of 'not a toy' do you not understand?"
Karissa looked down at her feet. Edra thought she saw a slight shrug from her.
"You don't know? You don't know what 'not a toy' means?"
"I do."
Edra nodded, "So you did what I told you not to do. How about your lie? Why did you tell me you didn't have this when you did?"
Karissa shifted from one foot to the other, but finally answered, "I didn't want to get in trouble."
Edra nodded again. "And did that work?"
Karissa shook her head.
"No. Do you remember what I said if you disobeyed me again?"
She responded very quietly, "No dinner..?"
"That's right, no dinner. So I want you on your bed," she pointed and Karissa sluggishly made her way there. "No toys, no games. And if I come back in here, I'd better find you right there."
Karissa sniffed. "You're mean, Momma. Are you having s'getti without me?"
Edra took a breath, "Maybe. I told you what would happen if you did what I told you not to do."
Karissa was quietly crying. The tears might have been real this time, knowing she was really getting in trouble. "I hate you."
Edra didn't know quite what she had expected, but it wasn't that. And with nothing more to add, she thought it best to just turn and leave. The door closed behind her as she headed for the living area. But before she could get out of her bedroom, she heard a muffled yelling from the other side of the door. "I hate you!"
She made it to the dinning room table before her emotions refused to be left behind and a sob escaped her lips. But she tried to barricade any more inside her. When she felt she'd accomplished that, she picked up both table settings to put them away. She had no appetite anymore.
With the table cleared off, she sat down, placing the kidnapped PADD in front of her. Just from a glance she could tell Karissa had altered the information in it. But, she didn't much feel like fixing it at the moment. However, she would apparently be having guests at the moment because the door chimed. Just great. She blinked a few times, for whatever good that did. "Enter."
When the doors opened it was Henry standing there. "Hey, how- What's wrong?" He stepped inside the door and was immediately at her side.
Apparently, it was that obvious, but she shook her head. "It's been a...bad afternoon. No, actually it's actually just been a bad..." she looked at the room's chronometer, "30 minutes."
"Can I help?"
She shook her head. Karissa was her child, which made her her responsibility, not his. It was why she had stood her ground a few minutes ago, though she wondered of she'd made a mistake in doing that.
About that time Karissa decided to repeat her rallying call, and they could hear her from all the way out there.
Henry frowned a bit, "Hmmm..let me take care of this?"
She shook her head again, "You don't have to."
He put a hand on her shoulder and squeezed, "I know, just let me talk to her."
Edra didn't have it in her to fight back, so she just nodded and watched him walk towards Karissa's room.
When the doors opened Henry saw Karissa sitting on the edge of her bed, kicking her feet back and forth. When she looked up and saw him, her eyes got wide. "Mr. Henry!"
"Hey there...Pipsqueak?"
"No! It's Squeakers!"
He nodded, "That's right. What's all the commotion about?"
"Momma's being mean."
"Is she, now?"
"Uh huh. She said I couldn't have s'getti tonight."
"I see. And why did she say that?" He asked as he sat down on her bed.
Karissa suddenly got quiet, "'Cause I was playing with her work."
"And?" Because something this severe had to have more to it.
"After she told me not to."
"I see, well, c'mere," He patted the bedspread next to him and she scooted over to that spot. "Listen, your momma has always done imporant work, and now she's doing other important work that more people are relying on. And she's getting used to this different work.
"Now, do you want other people mad at your momma?"
Karissa shook her head.
"Well, if she loses any of her work, others are gonna get mad at her, so taking it is a bad idea."
"That's why she told you to leave them alone. Now, you still mad at her?"
"Uh huh."
"Ok, but guess what. I'm mad at you." Her eyes got big again. "Do you know why?"
"Because I got in trouble?"
"Because your momma is out there crying right now."
"Momma doesn't cry."
He looked directly at her. "You callin me a liar?"
"No, sir."
He threw her a bit of a grin so she didn't get too scared. "That's what I thought. So, you're mad at your momma, and I'm mad at you. Did you know your mom gets mad at me?"
Oh...well, she could have at least taken a moment to think about it. "Okay. Did you know I get mad at her?"
Karissa just stared at him, shaking her head.
"We may get mad at each other, but we never say ''I hate you' to each other. Being mad only lasts a short while. Hate lasts a long time. And no one wants to be hated."
She may have been getting what he was telling her, because she hung her head and said. "I'm sorry."
"I'm not the one you need to say that to. You still hate her?"
She shook her head. "But Momma said I had to stay right here."
"I think if you come back with me it will be okay. And maybe I can put in a good word for you and get you some dinner."
She jumped off the bed. "Okay!"
"Hey!" His exclamation stopped her in her tracks. "This is a Get Outta Jail Free card. You can only use it once. This happens again, I can't help you. You understand?"
"Yessir." She answered meekly.
"Alright. You better go start with an apology."
Karissa ran out into the living area. "Momma, Momma!" Right up to Edra. "I'm sorry. I don't hate you. I was just mad."
Edra smiled, still trying to not cry, and scooped her little girl up into her arms. "Well, that makes me very happy."
Karissa pushed herself away enough to look at her mother. "I'm sorry I took your impotent work."
Edra laughed. "I think you mean 'important.'"
Karissa nodded, "Uh huh."
Edra hugged her again, holding her close. She didn't doubt that there would be more outbreaks. Karissa would only become more more independent as she got older. Whatever Henry said to her must have worked, and she would take that for now.
Karissa squirmed until she got some room again. "Mister Henry said I could have s'getti if I 'pologized."
"Oh he did, did he?" She looked in his direction.
Henry approached them, eyeing Karissa. "What I said is *if* you apologize, I *may* be able to talk your mother into getting you something to eat."
Edra shook her head, "I dunno...those sound an awful lot alike." She looked from one to the other. "Ugh, I'm clearly being bullied here." She put Karissa back down. "You, go clean up and I'll have something ready for you when you come back."
As they watched blonde curls bounce away, Edra got up to get food from the replicator. "You okay?" She heard Henry say.
She nodded, taking the moment to keep her composure under control, then turned to him. "Thank you. I think the rest of my night would have been a lot worse if you hadn't shown up." She brought back a dish of spaghetti and tomato sauce after grabbing a fork and placing them on the table.
"I'm glad I could help." He replied, then turned toward the direction in which Karissa had disappeared. "I might be able to do something else. What's her favorite color?"
"Seriously? Haven't you spent more than two seconds in her room?"
Henry nodded, "Right, purple. Got it."
Karissa's heavy-footed romping announced her return, and she headed straight for her seat. "S'getti!" As if it was a complete surprise. She ran to Edra, wrapping her arms around her mother's legs. "I love you, Momma."
Edra returned the embrace as much as a standing adult could against a 5-year old. "I love you too, Squeakers. Now go eat before it gets cold."
Karissa had no problem obeying that order. She climbed into her seat and began devouring the pasta.
Henry placed his hand on the small of Edra's back, getting her attention. "You getting anything to eat."
She shrugged, "Eh, I lost my appetite earlier, and still don't feel too hungry."
"You should try to eat something. I can stay around if you want."
She smiled, appreciating the offer. "Thank you, but I think we'll be okay. If i can, I'll grab a bite."
"Alright," he said, kissing the top of her head. "I'll head out, then. Goodnight, Pipsqueak. Be good."
"It's Squeakers!" Karissa managed to say around the food in her mouth.
"Right. I'll get it someday. Goodnight." He said to Edra.
"Goodnight. Thank you, again."
He smiled and gave her a kiss before showing himself out.
Cmdr Edra Crow--XO--USS Mercutio

Ens. Aislinn Norson --Sci--USS Legacy

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Iar Edra
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