“Show me your silvery tears, the ones on the skin of your heart. Show me your rainbow tears, the ones that come when you see the sunshine through the storm. Show me the tears that are cried beneath what the rest of the world can see, what the eyes miss yet love renders visible. The bravest thing you will ever do, sweet love, is to show me your tears, for what is tearing you apart cannot be a part of you, but something to be healed in the gentle ways of our kind.”
Thanksgiving could be the most beautiful time when we use it to rev up our empathy for one another, to recall what living is truly about. We could learn to thank our creator for the beautiful planet we call Earth, for the loving bonds we share with family and for the ability to pursue our own passions in a way that benefits others.
We could thank our creator for the chances given to make living better for all of humanity and for all of creation too. We could thank our creator for the guidance given to love one another, for the messages that come out in our stories, our songs, our artistic expressions of all forms. We could give thanks for the sunshine and rain so naturally given and the technological breakthroughs of mankind all the same. For when we are inspired to act through love, things go right... love is a sort of magic... and we should be thankful for the magic in our soul.
The day turned out to be great for Adeline as she got the chance to meet her extended family and she was relieved to know that there were some people whom she could have called FAMILY.
It was the best time she had in the last five years, surrounded by Jonathans. So, in all, it turned out that seventeen of Ace’s relatives- uh, oh! Not just Ace’s but Adeline’s too had come in for Thanksgiving.
Adeline’s mom, Rose Martinez had three siblings- two sisters named Chloe and Karin, and then a brother, of course, Ace’s father- Kevin, who was unfortunately dead- and between the four Jonathan siblings, they had fourteen kids.
The shocker was that Ace had two little sisters which Adeline was unaware of as they lived in Ireland with Talia’s family due to their security concerns. Their names were Katerina and Caroline.
Yeah, they were twins. So, Katerina, Carolina and Ace belonged to Talia.
Chloe and her husband, Marc, had six children. Mason was the eldest, and then there was Valerie, Rosaline, Riley, Steve, and lastly Evan.
Karin and her husband Victor had three children. Victoria was the firstborn, followed by Leo, and then Max.
And then Rose Jonathan Martinez, youngest of all siblings had Adeline, hers and Jack’s only child.
Adeline was not stupid enough to believe that Jonathan and their children were all of what made up the entire family. There had to be tons upon tons of more family members that hadn’t made it out for thanksgiving dinner. I mean, weren’t most Irish families extremely large?
Even so, Adeline did not mind in the slightest that the coffee house was packed with loud, chattering adults and even louder and hyper children. Each member gave Adeline a warm hug, whispering soft and lovely words in her ear, welcoming her into the family.
The last time she had seen any of this large family gathering she had to at least have been in kindergarten or first grade in London at Michaela’s house. This was different from anything she had experienced in the last several years, and far from feeling awkward or anything, she actually felt comfortable.
There was an estranged thought that crossed Adeline’s mind, feeling a sort of weird comfortability with people that she hadn’t met in her entire life. She doubted this was going to happen again, so Adeline decided to soak up the environment before she never saw it again, as depressing as it was to admit.
“Adeline! Adeline! Adeline, come play hide and seek with us!”
Adeline was instantly bombarded by a pack of little kids the second she stepped out of the bathroom after washing her hands. Unless she was much mistaken, dinner was in a few minutes, so washing her hands was a good idea, of course.
Adeline was not sure which one of Ace’s little cousins- oh sorry! No, which one of her little cousins was currently bouncing around her legs, but he was adorable with dark ringlets and bright blue eyes.
“Steve!” A loud voice cut over the chattering little kids, making them all stop talking immediately. “What are you doing?”
A tall, pretty girl, probably about fourteen or fifteen, appeared in the kitchen doorway a moment later, looking disapprovingly down at the small clump of children.
“I just wanted to play with Adeline, Valerie!” The little boy named Steve said in a cute voice, blinking up at the taller girl, Valerie.
“Well, we are about to eat dinner, so you can’t play right now,” Valerie said with a sigh, making all of the little kids fall silent with disappointed looks.
Looking at the kids, Adeline smiled as she bent down a little, saying, “But I promise we can play hide and seek later,” she interjected before she could stop herself. Honestly, she had never been around little kids much before, but they were absolutely adorable and she did not want them to look so sad. And a game of hiding and seek wasn’t too much trouble, was it?
Apparently, the group of little kids enjoyed that, because they all let out squeals of excitement and tried to hug her at the same time. Well, since they were so small, they ended up hugging Adeline’s legs. She nearly toppled over backwards onto the floor from the mass of children currently hugging her legs, but she couldn't help but burst out laughing, trying to keep herself upright.
“You’re so awesome, Adeline!” Katerina, Ace’s seven-year seven-year-old sister squeaked, clutching at her legs. “I knew there was a reason Ace is so nice to you.”
Adeline tried not to pay too much attention to that comment even if she was hoping that it was actually true.
“Come on, come on, children,” Valerie cut in, waving a hand. “You can come and help me set the table.”
There was something motherly command in Valerie’s voice that made the kids immediately dash from the kitchen and it was not probably a great idea playing hide and seek in the kitchen, now was it?
“Thanks for that,” Adeline said to Valerie. “I’m not normally used to being around kids so much.”
Walking a bit in Adeline’s direction, Valerie waved her hand in nothing, saying, “Oh! It’s nothing, Adeline. I figured as much since you are a single kid from Aunt Rose.”
Nodding to it, they got on picking up the dishes from the cabinets and taking them out to set them on the dining table whilst conversing with each other about their daily routine.
Shocker to Adeline was that she hadn’t met Talia till now, just a normal glimpse of each other and then nothing, NADA.
Adeline’s thoughts were abruptly interrupted by Valerie calling her name, “Hey! Adeline!”
Blinking, “Sorry, I was thinking something. What did you ask?” Questioned Adeline.
“No problem,” Valerie replied, grinning. “So, you have been working for aunt Talia without knowing that she is Family.”
“How did you know about that?”
Valerie shrugged indifferently. “Arris told me.”
Rolling her eyes, huffing out a sigh. “Typical.”
Valerie’s grin widened. “I wouldn’t worry about that. He is normally always unpleasant.”
“You don’t need to tell me.” Adeline snorted in agreement. “I wholeheartedly agree with that one.”
Chuckling over it, Valerie and Adeline wandered over to the four tables pushed together in the middle of the coffee house, covered with homemade tablecloths. Talia, Karin, and Chloe were bustling back and forth between the kitchen and the tables, carrying steaming dishes of turkey, mashed potatoes, buttered rolls, cranberry sauce which Adeline completely forgot to cook, and a few dishes that she did not even recognise.
People treated Adeline the same as they treated other kids, a few talks here and there and then it was time for everyone to settle down. It took another couple of minutes to get everyone seated around the tables, especially younger ones. If anything, it had gotten significantly louder since she first walked into the place, and she was not so sure if her eardrums were going to be permanently damaged because of it.
Somehow, and she would probably never know-how, she ended up sitting in between Ace and Mason.
Talia’s voice was loud enough to drown out everyone else in the place, and they all immediately fell silent. It was sort of hard not to listen to anything that came out of her mouth because she would probably put an eye on anyone that did not.
“Bow your heads,” Talia ordered, glaring at all of them. “And we will say grace.”
Everyone folded their hands and did their part as Adeline herself quickly said the ‘Bless us, oh lord’ prayer in her head and dropped her hands in her lap, but suddenly she felt someone’s hard gaze on her. Well, it had been there for the whole time but it felt like this strong dominant gaze had travelled close to her.
Rubbing her neck, she rotated her head to see if someone was there or not and her eye caught……
Who did she see?
Was someone keeping an eye on her?
Was Adeline in trouble again?
Meanwhile, Ace’s eyes also followed Adeline’s movement and his face held no surprise at all.