"Ems, I love you, but did we really have to come here?"
Uncle Niall pouts as I grab him by the hand and walk him down the welcome wing of the Science Museum. Dad and mum lag behind, her feet already feeling a bit unsteady.
"Uncle Niall, it'll be fun!"
"Why couldn't we go to the zoo?"
"Niall, you take her to the zoo at least once a month. Today is her day." Dad says with a smile upon his face. Uncle Niall continues pouting as we walk down the long wing.
"We could have at least gone to the aquarium." Uncle Niall mumbles.
Dad simply shakes his head, "Niall, it's basically a zoo for fish."
"So? Bloody hell, they don't only have fish Harry."
"That's beside the point. It's Emma's day, don't ruin it."
"I'm not gonna ruin it." He sigh loudly and plasters a smile upon his face, "Alright princess where to first?"
"Dad can we go to the hatchery?"
Uncle Niall turns to look at dad and says, "What's that?"
"It's basically a place you go to watch chicks hatch."
"Wait. There are animals here?"
Uncle Niall's face lights up and I knew that I had made a good suggestion, "Yeah, do you want to see them?"
"Yes!" Uncle Niall takes a look at the pamphlet he was holding and smiles "Let's go see the chicks!"
I turn to look at dad as he laughs, and so does mum. But the moment we take a step forward mum's face falls.
"You okay, love?"
Dad grabs mum's elbow and steadies her.
"Just a bit tired."
Dad leads her to a fancy wooden bench and sits down next to her, "Is it your feet again?"
"Let me just sit for a bit, I should be fine in a few minutes."
"Ems, why don't you and your Uncle Niall go up on ahead?"
"Um, alright." Uncle Niall slips his hand in mine again, but before we go I turn to look at mum, "Don't push yourself for me okay? I know you're not okay, but the fact that you came anyway makes me really happy."
"Emma," she looks up at me with a bright smile on her face, "I'm okay. My feet are just a little swollen. I promise you we will join you guys when you get to the space part, that's my favorite."
"Mine too." I say as she grabs my hand.
"Alright, go along then." Dad says waving us away.
"Call us when you want to meet back up." Uncle Niall says dragging me as quickly as he can in the direction of the hatchery.
As we walk along, I look around at everything. It had been such a long time since dad had brought me here, it's like everything changed.
"Is that it?" Uncle Niall points to a room that was painted purple, it had high arches and what looked like metal tubes wrapping around the entire ceiling. There were loads of little kids and semi-amused parents huddling around all of the tanks, Uncle Niall quickly walking over and trying to push his way through.
"Ems look, they're mice!"
"Oh and look frogs!"
"Those are cute."
"Ems, what's wrong with you?"
"Nothing." I say trying to put a smile on face.
"Princess is it because your mum is feeling a bit off?" He pulls me aside to a corner where there are less people and gets down on one knee to be able to be leveled with me.
"No, nothing is wrong."
"Emma, you have to tell us when something is wrong, you can't keep bottling it up like this."
"I'm not doing that. I told you I'm fine."
I turn away from him and try to get lost in the crowd of people, there were so many people.
I feel Uncle Niall pull my arm and turn back towards him, "Emma, please."
"Let's have some fun today, ay?"
"Okay." I say with a smile.
Mum never joined us when we got to the space exhibit. Dad called to tell us he was going to drive her home and then come back for us.
I didn't want to sound like a spoiled brat. I have never been one and did not plan on becoming one at eleven. But today was supposed to be my day. I haven't spent a proper day with dad in ages. I haven't seen mom unless she was half asleep or in pain. I didn't like what was happening.
This doesn't feel like my world anymore.
It feels like I'm slowly being edged out from what was once my family. With only Uncle Niall to hold my hand and pull me back in case I forget where I belong.
"Emma, the bell rang!" Dad yells loudly from the bottom of the stairs.
I turn to adjust my shirt in the mirror and quickly make my way downstairs.
"It's Janice!" I say rushing past him, I could already imagine him smiling widely.
I open the door to see Janice standing there, dressed in what seemed to be her Sunday's best. And even though I knew it wasn't for me, I didn't mind. For the first time I didn't mind that she was friends with me to meet my family.
But I knew she liked me for me, and that after this first time meeting them they'd probably just become normal people to her, like I did.
"You look nice Janice."
"Thank you." She says smiling while looking down.
"Do you want to come in then."
Janice steps through the door, her eyes already wide in excitement. She almost trips over the step we have leading to the main hallway and I grab her hand to steady her.
She laces her fingers in mine and squeezes tightly.
"Who do we have here then?" Dad says as he peeks in from the kitchen.
That's when we lost her, her strong grip became loose in an instant. But somehow I save her from falling backwards, instead I hugged her to me, trying not to fall.
"Dad, this is Janice."