Last time we visited the Vincis, Sal moved away to college. Craig finally finished crafting his first servo, whom he named Bitsy. Both Bitsy AND Craig were abducted by aliens while they were looking through the telescope. Gretchen got knocked up by Craig, and it's entirely likely Craig was knocked up by the Pollination Technician. How will the three of them manage? We'll see.
Shortly into the spring season, Gretchen's belly began to grow especially fast. She went from having a tiny baby bump to a full-sized pregnant tummy.
Craig was feeling ill after his abduction, sick to his stomach all the time, and he had to wonder what the aliens had done to him. He hadn't remembered a thing about the experience.
The second time he had to run to the bathroom to throw up, he began contemplating calling his doctor. Maybe they had given him some sort of disease, some terrible space disease that earth doctors couldn't cure!
It wasn't until Gretchen pointed out that he was imitating her a few months ago that Craig began to think further into what the aliens had done to him. Could it possibly be...?
When his stomach began to bulge outward in the telltale signs of pregnancy, he knew it was true. Somehow, those aliens had impregnated him! He was, frankly, a bit terrified at what would happen in nine months, but Gretchen (ever the mad scientist at heart) entreated him to hold out, to see what the product of the pregnancy would be. Craig hesitantly agreed, but only with Gretchen's promise that she would watch after him day and night to make sure there were no ill effects.
However, it wasn't long before she herself was due to give birth, and shocked, her only thought when her water broke was, "Well, at least it was in the bathroom..."
Craig came rushing in. "Don't scare me like that, I'm pregnant!" Gretchen looked at him with wide eyes, then groaned loudly. "And I'm about not to be!" she shrieked.
A few hours later, a beautiful baby girl arrived, and they dubbed her Sadie.
She had both her parents' skin tone, her father's hair color, and her father's light blue eyes.
After a few extra days maternity leave to stay home with Craig and Sadie, Gretchen finally headed back to work, scoring a promotion almost immediately upon her return thanks to all the study time she had while pregnant and laid up.
Bitsy, too, came home with a promotion, and she was pleased to contribute to the family coffers, even though she really preferred to be doing something with journalism.
It was handy that Craig was off work on paternity leave because it allowed him to watch after little Sadie during the day while both Gretchen and Bitsy were at work. Then he slept soundly through the night and let the "girls" of the household take care of the newest addition.
Bitsy especially chipped in, since she required less recharge time than Craig and Gretchen. The early morning shifts frequently fell to Bitsy, who loved the tiny Sadie and was surprisingly gentle and tender with her for a robot.
Bitsy happened to run into Tara Cleary one evening while she was taking out the trash, and it turned out that Tara and Bitsy had a lot in common - most notably their enthusiasm for tinkering. Tara was fascinated to see what could be done with her robotics bench, and Bitsy was charmed to find someone other than Craig who liked to talk about her bits and bytes.
Not only that, Tara also worked in the journalism career, and she encouraged Bitsy to make the switch now, since there was an opening Tara knew about. "I'll put in a good word for you," Tara offered casually, and Bitsy nearly pumped Tara's arm off shaking her hand in thanks.
Time passed, and Craig's belly swelled much as Gretchen's had. It was getting scarier for him at this point, but Gretchen assured him that his symptoms, so far, had demonstrated nothing out of the ordinary from any normal human pregnancy.
It wasn't long before Bitsy was bringing home promotions in her new career, and it also wasn't long until...
...to his terror, it came time for Craig to give birth. Gretchen and Bitsy were right there, making sure to watch him and monitor the birth closely for any signs of abnormal distress.
At first, when Craig saw what he'd given birth to, he was horrified. It was a monster! An aberration! How could this have come out of him?
But, as he looked down at the little face, he couldn't help but feel paternal toward the tiny, helpless creature who looked nothing like him yet shared his daddy's hair color already.
When the tiny babe first smiled at him and looked up into his face with those huge, shining eyes, Craig knew he loved the baby immensely. What had started as a curious freak pregnancy had turned into their new baby boy. They named him Cole.
The house was far too small for all of them now, so a second floor was built with rooms for each of the children, a play area, and a bathroom. With all the promotion money the three of them had been bringing in, it didn't strap their purses at all. With Cole happily settled in his crib in his new room, the happy parents realized it was time for another happy event: Sadie's birthday.
She grew into a beautiful, almost exotic-looking toddler with her jet black hair and shocking light blue eyes. "We'll be beating the boys off with sticks when you get older, won't we?" Gretchen asked the warm bundle snuggled against her chest, smiling.
Sadie also came into a shockingly lovely personality. Supremely nice, playful, and active, with a modest shy streak, she would certainly make them even prouder than they already were as she grew up.
Bitsy continued to help out at home, coaxing Sadie to learn some of her toddler skills because Craig and Gretchen were both back to work now, their parental leave over.
Craig brought home a promotion and got one step closer to achieving his goal of being a criminal mastermind.
Bitsy, too, worked on promotions in her field, delighted to finally be doing something in her chosen field.
Her regular routine involved bringing home Tara Cleary so they could hang out together. Not only did Bitsy simply enjoy Tara's company, but being so close to a more senior member of the career track did Bitsy's reputation at work good.
The house could never have run without Bitsy in those early toddler and infant days of Sadie and Cole's. Two parents working full-time meant that by the time they got home from work, they played with the children until they were exhausted, then fell into bed. That's when Bitsy picked up the slack, checking in on little Cole...
...and helping Sadie to keep learning her toddler skills. Sadie thought Bitsy was hilarious, especially the little bow on her antenna. It was more than once Bitsy had to gently pry the pink adornment out of the happily squealing toddler's hands.
It seemed that the children grew fast as weeds, though, and it was soon time for Cole's birthday.
It was hard to distinguish features that may have come from Craig, especially when Craig had no idea what Cole's other parent looked like. Regardless, Craig felt Cole was his and Gretchen's alone.
Cole's personality was a little less balanced than his older sister's, but despite being painfully shy and supremely sloppy, he was the nicest child they'd ever seen, and that made their hearts proud.
It would certainly be an adventure raising these two.
[[Author's Notes: Yaaaaay, green baby Cole! Also, wow, I think Sadie should be gorgeous when she reaches teenhood. That black hair/blue eye combination - whew! This house is so much fun to play, and I don't know what I would have done if Craig hadn't built Bitsy. That servo is a lifesaver, even if I get no points for her existence. I didn't take any overall pictures of the second floor, but it's pretty simple - bedroom for each kid, full bath, and a play area where I also stuck the piano Tara got them. Can't wait to get back to this house! The names were chosen purely randomly since I get tired of the thematic naming sometimes; I figure I've got a townie couple, so I should take full advantage and pick a few names that aren't in my chosen few ethnic circles! No bloopers this round, just cute babyness! See you at the Cleary's in the next entry.]]