Without You

{For the Appleshine Mum, Loony, may she rest in peace.} The House Appleshine is rocked when they find out that their mother, Luna, has fallen ill. With their lives changing left and right, they've begun to have strains on the family ties as they struggle to cope with their mother's illness.

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10. Chapter Ten

Wow. I can't believe that actually worked.

Prez watched with satisfaction as her brother and sisters' moods slowly changed from sad and lethargic, to neutral, to good. It seemed that the whole Disney method not only worked for her, but the whole family as well.

Of course, there was still the undying pit of sadness in the bottom of her heart that just wouldn't go away. The only time she was able to ignore it was when Wreck-It Ralph was on, and well, that movie always calmed her nerves.

She was, however, amused when she got to watch a seven-year-old make a reference. She figured she'd play along.

When Girlie had been gone even after the microwave had stopped popping the corn, she spoke up. "Girlie? You're not goin' Turbo, are you?"

She heard a giggle and a, "You wish," before the girl ran out with a bowl of popcorn in her arms. Girlie plopped down next to Ink, who immediately took the popcorn.

"You children of the candy corn share." Prez scolded half-heartedly.

"Easy, your Puffiness." Girlie replied sarcastically, and Prez froze up. Have they noticed the extra weight? She was in my lap earlier, what if she felt a kick . . .

But she quickly recognized that she was quoting Ralph and let out a laugh of relief.

They watched the rest of The Emperor's New Groove, plus The Little Mermaid and The Lion King. As the sun disappeared beneath the horizon, Prez turned off the television and sent her siblings to bed.

Before she could crash and sleep, however, she pulled out a small box.

In it were her two most prized possessions - a Wreck-It Ralph theatrical poster her mum had gotten her signed by Alan Tudyk, John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer, and Jane Lynch... and a family portrait.

The picture had been taken the previous year, in Canada when the family attended a wedding. Every member of the family had signed it. Prez ran a thumb over her mother's signature . . . Luna B. Appleshine.

And then, despite herself, she began to cry.

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