Recovery of a Hero Ch. 12byRoadbug©
The Hero's new Family
This story is a work of fiction only. Any chance resemblance to actual people or events is purely accidental.
It turned out to be a week before Uncle Dar could go home. We all stayed until he was better, including Shelly and Sandra. They'd gotten permission from their parents for that somehow. I think the fact that Megan was there helped a bit. She had even cancelled practice while Dar was in the hospital, and then would go get the whole team and bring them in to see him.
He loved the visits and would be happiest with a room full of kids. I was so happy that he was getting better, and so were the rest of my friends.
The day he was released, I pushed his chair to the elevator after telling the others, "My turn." Even though he was still planning to adopt Ellen and Nancy, I had to do this. He'd pushed me out of the hospital when I was allowed to go home.
Ellen and Nancy didn't argue. They did tell me, though, that we'd all take turns after we got home. I agreed with them but this one time I was going to do it. He'd been there for me for almost two weeks, and I was there for him this time.
We got out to the van, and George helped him in. He was still real week but he seemed to be favoring his bad leg less than before the infection. I hoped this was a good sign.
We got loaded into the van with him in the front passenger seat, and Megan driving. She went to the motel first so we could all get our things that we'd left there, and George got us checked out and paid the bill.
Leaving the motel, we headed home. I was glad that we were going home and that tonight I'd be able to sleep in my own bed. I was also happy that I'd be able to play on that wonderful computer that Uncle Dar had gotten me what now seemed so long ago.
I looked at the date on my watch and realized that he'd only been with us a bit over a month and a half. It seemed much longer since he'd come to us that first day and George had been home only a few days longer.
With all that had happened, I'd also forgotten that my birthday was only a few days away. It was now July 21st and my birthday was the 25th. Then Shelly's on the 26th. I wasn't sure when Sandra's was or Ellen's and Nancy's. I'd have to find out.
When we got home Inspector Reach was there to meet us. He walked up to the van and waited while George got him into his chair, then walked up to him and shook his hand and said, "Welcome home."
Uncle Dar said, "Thank you. Sure is good to get out of that hospital even if it wasn't as bad as the last time. I actually had so many visitors that the hospital threatened to charge admission."
Inspector Reach laughed at that and said, "Well I hope you don't have to go back. With every body gone, and the boss taking an interest in this young lady's case, I've been a bit busy. I even got two extra agents assigned to my office just to have enough hands to keep an eye on the house here."
George said, "Well, I'm grateful for that regardless of the source. Thank you."
"Don't mention it. We have an ongoing investigation involving your house and you people anyway so it's our job. I also understand why you were gone. Only reason I didn't come in for a visit is my case load right now."
Uncle Dar said, "Is there another reason you're here besides welcoming me home?"
"Not really, just welcoming you all back and letting you know that there were no problems." Said the Inspector.
George said, "Thank you for the trouble."
"No trouble," he said. "This is still a crime scene that's under investigation. I can't make you move out, but I can make sure it stays secure. Just part of the job."
With that, he got into his car and left. I didn't know if I was happy he'd gone or not.
We went to the door with Ellen and Nancy pushing Uncle Dar up the ramp that had been put in for Uncle Sammy when he got so sick.
George disarmed the security system, and unlocked the door and we all filed in.
When we got inside, I noticed that it looked cleaner than it should have with us having been gone for almost a week. I said something about it to George, and he said "Megan and Janice came home last night to do some cleaning, since we'd been gone for so long."
I said "Thank you" to Megan and gave her a smile. She was really thoughtful about helping.
Ellen and Nancy took Uncle Dar to his room. I took Sandra and Shelly into the kitchen to fix something to eat for all of us. It had been a long time since breakfast and we were all hungry.
We made up a plate of sandwiches and some Macaroni and Cheese. I also made a pot of coffee for Uncle Dar and George while Shelly made some lemonade for the rest of us.
When the coffee was done, I filled the big travel mug for Uncle Dar and the coffee pitcher we used when we had company for George and anybody else who wanted some. I hated it, myself. Vile stuff.
With Shelly carrying the lemonade and glasses, Sandra the sandwiches and Macaroni and Cheese, I took the coffee and a few extra cups and we all took it into Uncle Dar's room.
The others were already there, and had set up a table with some chairs for lunch. Uncle Dar was in his recliner next to the table and had Ellen on one side, and Nancy on the other.
I looked at them and thought to my self, "I lost my job with Uncle Dar." I was sorry about it, but I knew they needed him more than I did. I had Janny, Erica and George. They only had each other and Uncle Dar.
Megan looked where I was looking and leaned down and whispered, "He still needs you and so do they."
I whispered back, "I know. I feel like I just lost a friend though. I promised his aunt that I'd take care of him for as long as he needed me."
"Well you're still keeping that promise because he still needs you," she said.
"I need him too," I whispered. After what happened in the pool, I need him more than ever. He risked his life for me and I don't know how to even say 'Thank you' to him. All I know is that I love him for it."
"Then just tell him that," she whispered. "That's what he needs most right now. The same with your friends. They lost everything when they lost their parents. I know that you did too, but you had more than they do now when that happened. I lost my best friend and it still hurts but they lost their entire family."
"I know," whispered. "But I don't know what to do."
She smiled sadly and said, "Just be there. It's all you can do right now but it's important. They need Dar to hold on to but they need you for the same thing. They have to rebuild their entire worlds and that's a hard thing to do."
I sighed and whispered, "Ok. I'll be there when they need me and I'll be there for Uncle Dar too. Thank you for being a friend."
She smiled at that and said, "I'll be there for you too. Just like your mother was for me when first my father died, and then my husband died. She was my handhold on life when I needed it."
After that, we went back to eating while I thought about what she'd said. Handhold, she said. I would be that for Ellen and Nancy and Uncle Dar too. I wouldn't be able to help him much physically because of my head so I'd just have to be there. I guess that's what friends really are for. Someone to be there.
When we'd finished eating, I suggested that we call Uncle Dar's Aunt and let her know that he was home again. George said, "Already done. She'll be here tomorrow with her husband to see him."
Janny said, "Well I guess we should go to the store and get a few things for tomorrow and do a BBQ out back if we can."
George said, "I'll ask Reach and see if we can use the pool. I bet we can have a great party tomorrow."
I whispered to George, "Why not wait until my birthday, and we can have a big party. Shelly's is the day after mine, so we can have a big surprise party for her."
He whispered back, "I know, but lets do something just for Dar. Lets get some of his friends here tomorrow and have a party just for him. I know how to contact a few people that he knows and I bet I can get them here tomorrow. Then in a few days, we can do something for the two birthday girls. But tomorrow, lets do it just for Dar."
I agreed to that. It sounded like a good idea to me to have something just for him and I thought that he deserved it.
Later that day, George and Janny took the car and went shopping for tomorrow. While they were gone, Erica and I got the BBQ ready and made sure we had charcoal for it. We had plenty.
After that, Sandra and Shelly went home but promised that they'd be back for the party. We hadn't told Uncle Dar or Ellen and Nancy about it but Megan knew and said that she'd be there too. She made arrangements to pick up Sandra and Shelly to bring them back and they all left.
The house seemed suddenly empty without them or Janny and George around. Erica had gone upstairs to catch up on her school work so it was just Ellen, Nancy and me in Uncle Dar's room. I thought that this was the emptiest the house had been in a long time.
Uncle Dar was still in his recliner and the girls were still sitting with him.
He called me over and said, "I have something to tell you three. While I was in the hospital, I got my mental re-evaluation done. I'm now considered legally competent. George has arranged with his lawyer friend so in two days, we go to court and I adopt you two. I waited till the three of us were alone to tell you."
I jumped up and grabbed Ellen and said, "I'm so happy for you." Then I ran around Uncle Dar's chair and did the same to Nancy.
Uncle Dar said, "I'm not finished yet."
I sat back down and said, "Ok, what else?"
He said, "When we're finished at the court house, we're going to dinner. Just you three and me. I want to take my special girls out for a treat and nobody else will be there. Just you three."
He looked at me and said, "I know you feel left out right now, but I want you to know that I haven't forgotten the little girl who ran up to my chair awhile back and said 'My job now' and started pushing me around. Now I have two more to help me. All of you have helped. Since that first day at your cheerleader tryouts, there have been five of you taking turns helping me."
I got tears in my eyes and said, "I did it because you were there when George needed you. But when you'd been here a few weeks, I did it because of you. You are special Uncle Dar. I love you because of that."
Ellen and Nancy were also crying now, and we all hugged Uncle Dar and said, "We love you."
Uncle Dar said, "Well I love you too. You three and Shelly and Sandra have a place in my heart. Remember that and know that whatever else happens you will always have that place. After court, I want to take you three out and maybe the next day, I'll take all five of you somewhere special."
I don't know how long we sat there together, but after awhile I said, "We need to go check out what we have to wear for court. I want to look my best for after when Uncle Dar takes us out."
Ellen and Nancy agreed, so I used the intercom and asked Erica if she'd mind sitting with Uncle Dar for awhile, because we still had to watch him. He was a long ways from being well.
Erica came right down and said, "Well since I have to baby sit for awhile, I'm going to use that big fancy computer."
Uncle Dar laughed and said, "I already have a user account set up for you. All you need to do is set up a password and have fun."
Erica squealed and ran up to him and gave him a hug and a kiss on the forehead and said, "Thank you Uncle Dar."
"You need another one for your self now, Uncle Dar," I said. "I haven't seen you do much with your computer since you got it."
He laughed again and said, "I already have one. I got three lap tops that day at the mall. I just have the other hidden so I can use it."
I laughed and took Ellen and Nancy upstairs to see what we had to wear to court and the dinner Uncle Dar had promised us.
We went into my old bedroom first, and I looked to see what was still in the closet. When the others had moved my stuff down stairs, they hadn't take my dress clothes down. All my fancy stuff was still up here.
I opened the closet and saw that whoever had this room hadn't moved any of my stuff. She'd put her clothes way over to the side and left mine alone.
"Ok, who's using my old room now?" I asked.
"I am," said Nancy. "Is something wrong?"
I said, "Yes. It's your room now so it's also your closet now." I started taking my dresses out of it and laying them on the bed.
Nancy said, "You don't need to do that. I don't mind sharing a closet with you."
I said, "Well I do mind. I don't want to have to come up here to get my clothes out of your closet. It's your room now so use it."
She looked at me for a second and said, "You aren't mad?"
"No," I said. "I'm not mad. I said that you could have my old room, remember? I've got that nice room that Uncle Dar had set up for me and I have an empty closet in it. I do need help taking my stuff down there though."
"You really aren't mad at me?" She asked. "I didn't want to take over your room but Janny said that I should and Ellen should take the other one."
"Well Janny may have been a bit wrong," I said. "Maybe Ellen should have taken this room."
Ellen laughed and said, "I wanted it. I like looking at the mountains out there."
Nancy still looked worried. I hugged her and said, "As far as I'm concerned, we're sisters now. Ever since we met, you've been my friends. Uncle Dar once told me that friends help each other no matter what and you needed this room more than me. I don't care if you throw my stuff out the window as long as you're my friend. Ok?"
Nancy finally smiled and said, "Ok, sister. But I'm not going to just toss your stuff out the window."
I said, "I was only kidding about that. I'd rather you helped me take it down stairs. Now, lets see what we have to wear."
I started going through the clothes that Nancy had in her closet and found a beautiful blue dress that matched her eyes. "Perfect," I said. "I have one almost identical and it's the same color." I moved my stuff around on the bed and found the dress.
"Now," I said to Ellen, "We need to see if you have one like it too."
She said, "I have one that's identical. Janny got them for us at the mall."
"Well go get it," I said.
She ran over to her room and went in.
When she was gone I said to Nancy, "I know how hard it's been for you two. I'm not mad about you taking my room and I'm not mad about you helping with Uncle Dar. I can't do that much right now anyway. I still get dizzy sometimes and my back still hurts from landing on the diving board. You aren't taking over anything from me, your helping me.
"I meant it about us being sisters now," I said. "Both of my sisters are way older than me and it's real nice to have you and Ellen here. You're my sisters and my friends for ever."
Nancy didn't say anything, she just hugged me real tight. I hugged her back and said, "Forever."
Ellen came back in with her dress and said, "Forever what?"
I turned around and hugged her to and said, "Forever my sisters and friends."
Ellen hugged me back and said, "Forever."
We let each other go, and I got the dresses for Nancy and me and we went back down stairs to Uncle Dar's room. Erica was still on the computer and Uncle Dar was asleep in his chair when we got there.
Erica looked up and said, "Back already? I'm hardly started yet."
I said, "We're going to be busy for a bit. I still have a lot of my clothes up stairs and we're going to bring it all down."
I held up the two dresses that I was carrying and said, "What do you think? I held mine closer to her and said, "Me in this one, and Nancy in this one." I held out the other. "Ellen will wear that one." She held up her dress.
Erica said, "You three will look so good in those. What's the special occasion?"
I said, "Ask Uncle Dar. "I don't know if he wants us to talk about it, so you have to ask him. I just wanted to know if you thought that we'd look good in the dresses for him."
Erica said, "Oh yes. He'll love them."
I said, "Thanks."
"That's what big sisters are for," she said.
"Yea, and being bossy sometimes," I said.
She laughed and said, "That too. Janny taught me that."
We took the dresses into my room and put them in the closet for now. I said, "Now we have to see about shoes."
Ellen said, "We only have one pair of dress shoes each right now."
What size," I asked/
"We both wear size 6," Nancy answered.
I said, "Well so do I and I've got lots of them from Erica and Janny. I also have some of mom's shoes."
We went back up stairs to mom and dad's bedroom and went in. I took them to mom's closet and opened it and said, "I can't wear her dresses, but she wore a size 6 too so lets see what we can find."
We found a pair that would match the dresses we were going to wear and took them and went up to Nancy's room. I opened my closet again, and started going through all the shoes there and found a pair of Erica's old shoes and a pair of mine that both matched."
"There," I said, "Now we're ready for Uncle Dar. When we get ready, we'll have to do it in my room so we can all walk out and show him what we have."
They both hugged me and said, "Thank you."
I hugged them back and said, "Forever."
After taking the shoes back to my room, I had to lie down. I was feeling a bit dizzy after all the running up and down the stairs. I fell asleep lying there and don't know how long I was out, but when I woke up I saw that all my dresses and stuff were now in my closet. The cousin twins had brought all my stuff down from my old room and put it in my there.
I sat up and saw that they'd brought down all my shoes too. Getting up, I went out to the main room and saw that Uncle Dar was awake and playing a game with them on the plasma t.v.
I walked over and asked, Who's winning?"
Uncle Dar said, "Nancy is right now, but she doesn't realize that I'm sneaking up on her."
Nancy said, "Yea right. Your just making that up to mess with me. You haven't got a chance."
We all laughed at that and I went out to the kitchen to fix a snack. Jenny and George were still gone and it had been quite a while since lunch. I fixed up the left over Mac and Cheese and made up four plates for the others. I took them in to the Den and set the plates down on the coffee table and said, "Lets eat."
They stopped playing the game, and Ellen helped Uncle Dar into his wheelchair and pushed him over. Nancy came over too and they both sat down.
We'd just finished when George and Janny came in. George asked "Can you girls give me a hand with the groceries while Janny checks Dar's leg?"
We all jumped up and went out and helped him take the stuff in. I asked, "So how many are coming tomorrow?"
"About ten or so," he said. "Plus your two friends of course. Most of the guests will be Dar's friends and his aunt and Uncle."
I said, "Great. I'm glad that you were able to get some of his friends. I bet he'll be happy to see them."
"That's the idea, twerp." I punched him for the twerp and he laughed and continued. "I contacted five of them and they all said they'd be here by about noon. They'll com up together and stay the night at a motel room I got for them.'
He also said, "His Aunt and Uncle will be here with both of his cousins too. They found a baby sitter for the kids for the day and will be here about the same time."
Ellen asked, "What are you talking about?"
I said, "We're going to have a welcome home party for Uncle Dar. George got ahold of some of his friends and his Aunt and Uncle. They're all coming tomorrow."
Nancy said, "Great. I'll bet he'll be real happy to see them."
"That's the idea, twerp," said George.
Nancy looked at him for a second then she punched him too and said, "Don't call me that. I am not a twerp."