The smell of pine needles and lavender fills the room. I keep my eyes closed and hide my smile as the giggles get closer.
“Mommy? Are you awake?” Maya’s little voice whispers loudly. I can feel her weight climbing onto the bed.
“Shhh, Maya, Mommy gets to sleep, because it’s her birfday,” Andreas giggles at her while he climbs onto the bed as well.
I roll over and pretend to yawn with a big growl and stretch my arms out wide, grabbing them both and bringing them toward me. Their happy squeals fill my heart with joy.
“Hello, darlings,” I squeeze them tightly in my arms.
“Mommy, happy birfday!” Andreas says happily and gives me a wet kiss on the cheek.
“Mommy, Auntie Delilah sa
I sit on the edge of the bed in the silent room. So this is what twenty-five feels like. I wonder if a hundred and twenty-five will feel just as good. What about two hundred and twenty-five? I laugh to myself at the thought as I head into the bathroom. I look in the mirror and run a brush through my white hair. None of the sparkly gray came back when it grew in four and a half years ago. I examine the mirror closer. It looks like there are some more violet flecks in the light gray of my irises, but maybe that’s just me being hopeful. I still don’t have any abilities other than being able to shift and mind linking other pack members. I splash water on my face and brush my teeth. There will be time to shower later before the pack Summer Solstice party and pack run. I pick up some toys that made their way into the closet room and find a dark blue sundress to wea