The youngest members of the family were nearing the end of their teenage years. But first they had the most important night of the senior school year – prom night.
Caleb and Celeste glammed up for the big event. Celeste was excited to dance the night away with her prom date, Tyree Shanks.
Aurora’s boyfriend Derek had now officially moved in. His first novel Adventures in Space, Time & Other Places had been a moderate success, and he was now working on a new book Far Beyond Infinity & Then Even Further.
Now that he was officially a published Science Fiction author, it was times for him to “get his geek on”.
“Alright, sure,” Derek replied, closing his laptop and putting it aside.
“I want to start a family,” Aurora said bluntly.
“But if they were our children….?” Aurora began.
“What difference does that make?”
“You’d love your own children – you’d have to!”
“Don’t be ridiculous, there’s lots of good things about babies and children!” Aurora exclaimed angrily.
“Derek, having children is more important to me than anything else. I am helping my family build a great legacy here, and I need an heir to pass that on to.”
Aurora was too angry to reply. She couldn’t even look at him anymore, she just stood up and walked away.
“If you want to have a baby… well then we can have a baby.”
Aurora threw her arms around him.
“When you walked away, I thought about how I’d feel if you actually left me. I can’t bear to be without you Aurora. I can’t promise how I’ll feel about our child, and I don’t know how involved I’ll be with it’s upbringing, but I’ll always be there to support you, I can promise that.”
Since the death of Estelle, a woman named Jade Racket (who happened to be the ex-wife of Aurora’s father Shark) had been managing the day to day running of the family’s criminal organization. It had been necessary for someone with her experience within the business to do so whilst Tristan was in training. However the time had now come when Tristan had almost finished his training and was ready to take his rightful position as the head of the organization.
Only Jade didn’t see it that way. She had been gathering loyal followers from amongst the other criminals employed in the organization and she was not willing to relinquish her power.
“Something needs to be done about Jade Racket,” Tristan said coldly.
“You know what,” Tristan sneered, “There’s only one thing to do.”
“No!” Esmerelda said firmly, “The woman is practically family. She even spent Christmas with us a few years ago!”
“Don’t be ridiculous,” Tristan said, “You know what needs to be done. I’ll do it myself if you don’t have the guts.”
Aurora looked from her uncle to her mother. She understood now, why her grandmother had chosen Tristan to run the organization even though Esmerelda was her heir. Esmerelda had too much compassion to make the hard decisions.
For just a moment, Aurora felt a heart-wrenching indecision. But she already knew what she had to do. She had to make the right choice for the family, whatever the cost.
“Good. We’re going to take care of this problem – and we’re going to do it now. Let’s go.”