by Christine Kwasniewski
Adora, the leader of the Great Rebellion sat in her tent wrapping some last minute presents. It was going to be her birthday the next day and soon she would be going to Eternia so she could celebrate the birthday that she celebrated with her twin brother. Not only would she be on her home planet the day before her birthday but she was leaving Etheria for good. There was no reason for her to stay any more The horde had been called by their leader Horde Prime and Etheria was free
After three years the Rebellion with the help of He-Man and She-Ra had finally sent the Horde away after they were called back to the Horde World by Horde Prime their master.
"Why did I have to leave these to the last minute?" she asked herself as she finished wrapping one of the presents few presents she had left to wrap. Since her birthday was three days before Christmas she also has Christmas presents for her family and friends
"Because your cousin, aunt and other friends wanted spend time with you since you are going back to Eternia today. We will however be at your party." said a voice which belonged to Glimmer her best friend as well as her cousin.
Adora smiled, "It wonít be the same without you this year. Mother is inviting so many of her boring friends, princes and Kings from all the Kingdoms in Eternia. I need some of my friends to balance it out. Besides Motherís six months pregnant"
"Oh my gosh, Iíll have another cousin to spoil. Weíll come to celebrate your birthday tomorrow night, donít worry. Youíd better get ready Adam should be here any minute. Iíll help you with your bags." said Glimmer and grabbed two of her six bags. Adora took two and left the remaining to in her tent.
Meanwhile at the Royal Palace of Eternia Queen Marlena and her husband King Randor stood in the celebrations room where the birthday party would be held."Mother, itís beautiful." said Adam
"Thank you Adam. You and your sister deserve it. Both of you have worked hard during the past few years."Adam smiled. His parents were two of the few people who knew that he and his sister were He-Man and She-Ra.
"Speaking about my sister, I have to go get her. "said Adam as he kissed his mother. " Iíll be back soon."
"Adam, can you give this to your sister for me. Tell her she can open it."said Queen Marlena and handed him a small wrapped box.
"All right, Iíll see you in hour or so. Rest."said Adam and headed to Castle Grayskull. His mother was six months pregnant with her second set of twins, the first set was Adam and his sister Adora
Fifteen minutes later Adam arrived at Castle Grayskull where the Sorceress had opened a portal for him, "Your sister is waiting for you."she said.
As he went though the portal Adam recalled the time he had seen Adora for the first time in thirteen years. She had been kidnaped when they were eight years old and somehow Adam knew she would someday be found. Once on the other side of the portal Adam smiled when he saw his twin sister, talking with their aunt while they were waiting for his arrival, "Hey sis, you ready?" he asked after they hug.
"Yeah, just let me get the rest of my bags okay. "said Adora and ran to her tent and returns a few minutes later with a backpacks containing the presents she was wrapping before her brother had arrived as well as her other bags containing her personal items. Adora smiled as Cringer came bounding up to them. Unfortunately, Adora was knocked down by the large tiger as Cringer licked her face with enthusiasm. "All right that's enough, Cringer!" Adora cried as she fought the tiger off and Adam helped her up.
"Before we go Mother asked me to give this to you and tell you that you can open it right away."said Adam
"An early birthday present? Mother never gives us an early birthday present." said Adora
"Well this year she did. I got mine this morning. It was what I wanted. "replied Adam as she opened the small package that her brother had given her.
Adora smiled when she saw a journal which is one of the things that she asked for."How in the world did Mother know that I wanted a journal?"
"Mothers have their ways." replied Angella as she hugged her niece and nephew."You two better get going. We will see you tomorrow night. We want Adora to have some time alone with her family that she doesnít see everyday."
After a huge good-bye from everyone in Whispering Woods, Adam, Adora, went to a spot just outside the Woods, where Adora pulled out her magic sword and summoned the Sorceress, whose image appeared in the jewel near the sword's handle. "I'm ready to come home, Sorceress," said Adora, her voice quavering just a little.
Soon a yellow disc of light appeared. Adora was the last to enter the portal. She looked around at Etheria, then turned and stepped into the portal.
When they stepped out of the portal the two humans and two animals found themselves deep within Castle Grayskull. The Sorceress and Duncan were standing there, waiting for them. "At last, you are home, Adora," the Sorceress told her as she hugged her tightly. "Your parents will be so pleased." Just then Duncan came into the corridor
"Welcome back to Eternia Princess. I am glad you were able to make it again this year."
"Well, if I didnít come I donít think Adam would be too happy with me. I have some good news we did it. We sent the Horde away and Etheria is free. My friends are going to be coming our party on Saturday night."
Duncan smiled, "Your brother already told me, but your parents donít know yet. We wanted to wait for you to tell them Congratulations." said Duncan and gave Adora a hug. "Eternia will benefit even more now that it is under not only He-Manís protection but She-Ra's as well. From what Iíve been told you have become quite an expert when dealing with the Horde."
"Letís go home shall we?" said Adam as he took a couple of Adoraís bags and together they loaded the bags in the Attack Trak that Duncan had brought with him. Adora had brought six bags and it was a long walk back to the palace
It was already dark on Eternia and they could see stars already in the sky, Adora looked at the sky though one of the windows of the Attack trak. "I wonder if you can see Etheria from here."
Adam turned her head into the right direction. "There it is. If the night's clear, you'll be able to see it, standing on your balcony." as they got out of the Attack Trak and headed to the Throne room
"I'm looking forward to do that. I canít wait till tomorrow night Bow and Glimmerís twins are so
cute, even when they wake you up at three in the morning."Adam smiled.
A few minutes later they arrived at the throne room Randor and Marlena looked up to see Adam, Adora, entering the room. "Adora's home for good now," said Adam excitedly.
The twins' parents hurried down the steps of the platform and hugged their children to them. "Oh, how nice it'll be, to have a complete family from now on!" Marlena exclaimed as she hugged her grown daughter close. "I am going to have to get used to having you both live here again. And being the shortest in the family."
Before Adora could answer Alexis the twinsí dog greeted Adora by knocking her down and licking her face. "Alexis! Get off of her." Queen Marlena cried
"Itís alright Mother. Cringer does the exact same thing when he and Adam visit." said Adora once she was on her feet. "She just missed me thatís all. I am one of her owners after all."
"That is true. Sheís missed you." replied her mother. "Weíve all missed. you Did Adam give you the present I sent with him?"
"Yes Mother, he did. But how did you know that I wanted a journal for my birthday?" asked Adora
"Motherís know that kind of thing." said Queen Marlena." Why donít you two go and get Adora settled. David is coming over for dinner tonight. I am sure you remember him. His mother is bring some of her old baby stuff."
"Oh, I do Mother." said Adora. "David is very hard to forget. And I finally get to meet Kelly. If I remember correctly Davidís Mother was going to have the baby around the time I got kidnaped."
"Thatís right sis. Iím sure once she gets to know you she will become your best friend."Adam led her down the corridor to her room, which was right next door to his. It also was a connecting room to Adoraís. "Close your eyes Adora."
"Why?" asked Adora.
"If I told you that it wouldnít be a surprise."said Adam who knew that her room was finished even though he told her that it wasnít in his last letter.
"Alright." said Adora and closed her eyes.
Adam lead Adora into the room, "Okay, you can open your eyes now." said Adam. Adora opened her eyes and was surprised to see her room was finished.
"Adam, you told me that my room wasnít finished." said Adora as she entered the room.
Adam smiled, "I know. Mother was able to finish it while I was on Etheria." replied Adam as he joined his sister in her room. "All I had to do was keep the secret from you, which isnít easy."
"Well you could of fooled me." replied Adora and gave her brother a hug.
"Itís nice to have you home finally." said Adam.
"Itís nice to be home. Itís going to take me awhile to get used to living here again. It was very hard for me when I told you that I was going to stay on Etheria" said Adora.
Adam smiled, "I know. Itís going to take both of us awhile to get used to you living here. You havenít lived here for thirteen years."
A few minutes later Adora and Adam started putting some of Adoraís things away. "It's starting to feel like home already," Adora said as she thumbed through some dresses that were in the closet, dresses her mother had helped her pick out. Adam picked up one of the bags Adora had brought with her which contained the presents and started to open it but was stopped by his sister "Oh, Adam donít open that one just yet."
"Why not?" asked Adam.
Before Adora could reply there was a knock at the door. "Come in," Adora called.
The door opened, and in drifted Orko, who was a Trollan. He looked like nothing more than a floating long-sleeved shirt. A purple scarf and the brim of his pointed red hat concealed his face, except for his eyes. Blue ears protruded through holes in the brim, and in his blue hand he held a few flowers. "A welcome-home present, Adora," he said.
"Thank you, Orko." Adora said, accepting the flowers. "And Adam the reason why you canít open that backpack yet is because there are unwrapped presents in there that I donít want you to see."
"Youíre behind on wrapping presents too huh." said Adam.
"No, yours are wrapped. I learned the hard way last year. These are for the other members of our family as well as some friends. What time is David coming?" "said Adora and placed the knapsack on the top shelf of her closet, so her brother wouldnít find them.
Before Adam could reply there was a knock on the door," Can I come in?"a voice called. It was their childhood friend David
"Come on in David." Adam replied.
David, the twins childhood friend came in Adoraís room. His eyes widened when he saw Adora sitting on her bed,"Adam, you didnít tell me Adora was going to be here."exclaimed David who was surprised to see Adora.
"Itís her birthday too Dave. Besides sheís not leaving this time." replied Adam and motioned his sister to come and join them Adora got off her bed and hugged David, she hadnít seen him for a long time.
"Thatís right. We did it Etheria is now free and I am staying at home for good."
David smiled," Adam has been waiting for this day since I can remember. What a nice birthday present, not having to deal with the Horde anymore. But from what I have heard from your brother youíve done a lot of good on Etheria."
"I donít know about that David. It is a great birthday present but I have a feeling we havenít seen the last of the Horde. I know they wouldnít give up that easily. They may be on the Horde World but I have a feeling they wonít stay there for long. But I just hope Iím wrong."
"Iím sure if the Horde comes to Eternia you and your brother will be able to take care of them. We should go to the sitting room. My parents and little sister Kelly would love to see you Adora. They will be so surprised when they see you. If you remember them that is. I believe your Grandfather is here as well and I know you remember him."
"Kelly, wonít remember me David. I donít think she was even born when I was kidnaped. As for your parents I barely remember them because I havenít seen them for thirteen years. As for Grandfather I have seen him several times during the past few years. The last time was when I found out that my best friend was really my cousin."
"Oh, I am sure youíll remember Davidís parents once you see them sis. Weíll catch up to you in a few minutes, I have to talk to David for a second."
"Adam I donít know remember where the sitting room is." said Adora.
"I can show her where it is." said Orko who knew what Adam was planning.
"Thanks Orko" said Adam "David and I will meet you two there in a few minutes."
When Adora was out of hearing range Adam told David his plan to surprise Adora." The Whispering Woods only has showers and I donít think Adora has a chance to catch more then a occasional shower. I am planning on surprising her with a relaxing bubble bath tomorrow morning when we get ready for our party."
"Thatís a good idea. What do you want me to do? Iíll help any way I can."said David.
"I need you to keep Adora busy for a few minutes while I set up the bubble bath. Teach her how to play chess or something."s aid Adam.
"I donít know how to play chess so how can I teach her?" joked David. "I know what you mean though. Iíll have a long chat with her and Iíll let your parents know whatís going on too."
"Thanks David. Weíd better catch up to Adora before Orko gets her lost."said Adam as he and David ran down the hall so they could catch up to Adora and Orko.
A few seconds later they arrived in the sitting room where Adamís sister had just reunited with her Grandfather and was now talking with Davidís parents.
Adam smiled and sat down beside his sister just as three year old Kelly climbed on his lap."Hey Adam"she said hugging him. She knew who Adam was since he had baby-sat for her while he was growing up. But didnít meet Adora since she hadnít been born when Adora was kidnaped and brought to Etheria by the Horde. "Whoís your friend Adam?"
"This is my sister Adora. You didnít meet her because you wonít born yet."replied Adam "She moved to the planet Etheria to help the Rebellion, but now she is home to stay."
"Yeah, itĎs going to like having a older sister." said Kelly and climbed on Adoraís lap and hugged her like a long lost best friend.
"Well I think Kelly has a new best friend." said her brother David.
"And I also think its time for you to go to bed Kelly."said her mother
"Oh Mom do I have to?" said Kelly.
"Yes Kelly you do. Iím sure David would like to visit with his friends and not have to worry about his little sister being bored.."
"Sheís right Kelly, itís getting late and weíre having a party tomorrow night and your going to stay up late."said Adora and smiled at her brother
"A party yeah. Alright Mommy Iíll go to bed, if Adora comes with us." said Kelly and looked at Adora with a sad puppy face.
"Kelly, Iím sure Adora would rather stay and talk to Adam and David for a bit." said her mother.
Adora smiled, "Itís okay I can come and tuck Kelly in." said Adora and got up Kelly pulled her down the hall to her room. Once there she got dressed in her pajamas and Adora and her mother said goodnight to her and turned out the light after reading her a story.
Adora came back and sat down with her brother a few minutes later, "Looks like you have a new friend, sis." said Adam. "Kelly has never sucked up to someone like that. You are going to have to tuck her in every night for the next little while."
"Well, Iíd rather do that then have her get into trouble like we did at that age. She sort of reminds me of me at that age."
"We did certainly have our moments." said David. "Do you remember when we were playing ball and Adora broke the window? I was so afraid of Duncan I took the blame."
"Yes I do remember that. It was very sweet, I got in trouble anyway. I also remember when you and Adam tried to get Hordak to let me go by throwing toys at him."
"That was the most scariest time in my life. I knew that I couldnít let that monster take one of my best friends away from her family. To bad it didnít work." said David. "Iím glad Adam was able to rescue you."
"I didnít have to. When we got their Adora had already gotten out of the Fright Zone by herself but was being chased by some Horde Troopers. It was the best day of my life when we finally found her. I missed her so much."
"And he just happened to be there at the right time. It was very hard for me to decide to stay on Etheria. But as usual my brother understood. It was the best day of my life too. The last three years have been pretty good. I even found out who the blond hair Adam and I have comes from."
"I know, I was there. You had a chance to try your brothers spice cake right?"
"No, in fact when I was about take a bite the Sorceress called me and told me there was an emergency on Etheria and the Rebellion needed me. By the time I was finished the cake was gone probably gone. Why?"
"Well, I made a spice cake this morning and this piece has your name on it. Although I made it party tomorrow but I knew you had never tried it. Besides it doesnít take that long to make anyway."
Adora took a bit of the piece of spice cake her brother had given her and smiled, "Adam this is delicious. How old were you when you leaned how to make it?"
"I know I was in eighth grade so I must have been twelve when I learned how to make it. I know it was a cooking project "
"Thatís right. I was your partner that year before we moved into the house weíre living in now.So which of your friends are coming tomorrow night?" David asked
"Glimmer, Bow, their twins Jasmine and James, Madam Razz, Queen Angella, Broom and Kowl. Those are the closest friends I have on Etheria. I donít know about you two but I am going to bed."said Adora.
"I think thatís a good idea. We are probably not going to go to bed until late tomorrow so we should get some rest."said David. Adora nodded and they went back to their rooms which were in the same area of the palace, but Adam and Adoraís we beside each other and had a connecting door.
Adam and Adora were up early the next morning, after being awaken by their mother who sang happy birthday like she did every year. After breakfast David and Adora were in the sitting room playing checkers,"Itís going to be neat having a little sister or brother in February" Adora said.
"Yeah it will be strange having someone wake me up early again."said Adam and headed to his bathroom, leaving David and Adora sat in the sitting room playing checkers.
Adam turned on the water in the large sunken tub of his bathroom that he shared with Adora then went rooting around his collection of bubble baths and bath oils. "A nice, long soak in a hot tub, is just what Adora needs thought. His Mother always said it was the most sinfully pleasant thing she could think of. "Wonít Adora be surprised "Adam thought to himself.
The extra-large tub and redecorated bathroom had been his Christmas present a while back, there had to be something to her opinion. He knew Adora had the time to do more than grab an quick shower. He knew she had been very busy during the past three years and didnít have a lot of time just to relax. Steam rose from the rapidly rising water as Adam read over the various labels He finally settled on a lilac scented oil and poured some in. Lilacs were her favorite flower.
Next, he added a generous portion of bubble bath, creating frothy suds. He smiled to himself, thinking how surprised Adora would be. Satisfied that everything was perfect, he went down to fetch Adora.
He soon found Adora in the sitting room still talking with their parents, Davidís parents and Grandfather. Adora turned and saw Adam standing on in the doorway watching her silently. A wistful smile tugged at his lips, as if he was hiding something."Sis I need you to come upstairs with me; I have a surprise for you. But first you have to close your eyes."
"I'm not sure I can handle anymore surprises today," Adora said
"Just trust me."
"With my life," she whispered as she closed her eyes. Then, he lead her up the stairs.
"Okay, you can open now," Adam directed. He stepped behind Adora so she could see what awaited.
"What's all this?" Adora wondered. She had smelled the lilacs before he ever lead her through the doorway.
"A bubble bath so you can relax for a change" Adam replied. The tub indeed looked tempting. Adora chewed on her lower lip; a bath would feel so wonderful.... She knew that the Whispering Woods only had showers. "As I recall the Whispering Woods only has showers and I know you didnít have time to catch more then a quick shower so I thought you deserved a change. The towels are right over..." Adam paused upon finding the towel shelf empty. Then he remembered that they were all still downstairs from the last time the laundry had been done. "Tell you what, I'll go down and bring up some warm towels while you settle in. Then, I'll leave you to soak in peace." Adam kissed her on the tip of her nose and reluctantly backed his way out of the bathroom. Then, he hustled downstairs.
In the laundry room, he pulled several large towels from the laundry basket and tossed them in the dryer. _Just a few minutes to warm them up...._ nothing felt like getting out of the tub and wrapping up in a warmed towel.
Next, he headed to the kitchen. Searching the refrigerator, he found nothing cold to drink except wine, and he wasn't sure if Adora liked it or not. He didn't particularly care for it. In the pantry, he found an unopened bottle of sparkling white grape juice. That wouldn't do, either--at least, not until it was well chilled. Then, he glimpsed the box of instant hot chocolate. His mom was fond of drinking hot chocolate all year round, and she had introduced Adora to her favorite flavor: chocolate raspberry royale which was also his favorite flavor as well.
"Perfect on a cold winterís day."Adam said to himself
By the time Adam had the chocolate ready, the towels were done. He collected Adora's treats and wandered back to the bathroom where he had left his sister, he tapped on the bathroom door. He pushed the door open and saw that Adora had climbed into the bathtub. She was now starting to relax."Special delivery!" he said and he passed her the mug with the Hot chocolate in it.
Taking the mug, Adora took a sip. "Mmm, Mom's hot chocolate. She took another sip. Chocolate raspberry royale, my favorite flavor."
"She won't mind sharing," He assured her. Adam knew he should leave Adam was pleased that she was enjoyed her surprise so much. "Now, I'll leave you alone.You relax alright."
Adam was about to leave when his sister asked "Adam, why are you doing this?"Adora wondered, looking into his bright blue eyes.
"Because you deserve it. Youíve worked hard during the last three years and it is your birthday." He placed a finger across her lips to silence her protest. "Besides when was the last time you had a nice long soak in a hot tub?"
"Only when Iím here and thatís when I have time."
"Well today you have about an hour to soak in the tub, then we have to get dressed for dinner. Father is having a little get together with some of his boring friends before our party. Glimmer and Bow should be here soon."Adora nodded "Iíll call you when its time to get ready."and Adam left his sister in peace.
Adam had contacted their friends on Etheria and they were coming very soon. "Sis, time to get out. We need to get ready for dinner and the guests should be here soon. Glimmer and Bow are on their way to and their bringing the twins."Adam called as Adora stepped out of the water and wrapped a towel around herself, Adora opened the door, she noticed the robe Adam held out to her. He looked away modestly--to her amusement--as she gratefully slipped it on."How do you feel?" he queried.
"Like an overcooked prune!" Adora laughed. Standing on tiptoe, she pecked him on the cheek Even though they were twins he was a couple centimeters taller then she was."Youíll introduce me to some of the people right?"
Adam nodded, "I have to warn you some of them are really boring. Take a seat on the edge of the bed." He took her hand and guided her over to her queen-sized bed with its downy comforters. He unwrapped the towel on her head and spread it out over her shoulders.
Next, he took her hairbrush. He smiled at Adora's wide-eyed expression as he slipped around behind her on the bed and ran the brush through the wet tangles. He loved playing with Adoraís hair, especially when it was dry--it was so soft and silky. The longer he brushed, the more slumped Adora's shoulders became, almost as if she couldn't keep herself upright. Even after the last of the snarls was gone, "Now its time for us to get dressed."
Adora, who was in only her housecoat, tried to choose which dress to wear for their party that night. Adora pulled out a dress that was in a beautiful shade of blue. Adora put on the dress, and Adam helped by fastening it in the back. The dress went clear to Adora's ankles. It had long sleeves and left Adora's shoulders bare. Her mother had helped Adora pick this dress along with the others in her closet.
"Wear this one," Adam suggested. "You look beautiful," Adam told her as he came up behind her and gently turned her around.
For the first time in her life, Adora blushed. Adam walked over and pinned a delicate flower to her dress. "Whatís this for?" she asked
"An old earth tradition. Itís called a corsage."
Adora squeezed her brotherís hand. "Thank you" she said.
Adora gazed at herself in the full-length mirror near the closet and nodded. She felt slightly uncomfortable. She was so used to fighting and being a warrior; she'd hardly ever had a chance to dress up like this and look and feel feminine
"Are you ready?" he asked and held out his arm, which Adora took, and with Orko following on
behind they walked out of the room, to the main hall and down the corridor to the ball room where the get together/birthday party was going to be held.
The ballroom was nearing capacity as relatives, nobles, dignitaries, and ambassadors and other guests filed in. As for the rest of Eternia, the day had been declared a holiday, and much feasting was going on in Eternia's towns and villages, most notably in the capital city of Eternos. Everyone was celebrating the return of Princess Adora.
Everyone was silent as the Royal Family of Eternia was announced. King Randor and Queen Marlena entered first, holding hands, and they walked up the steps of the dais and sat down on their thrones.Queen Marlena was wearing a beautiful long gold gown, specially made by the tailors in the palace. Prince Adam and Princess Adora were next.
Most of the people hadn't seen Adora since she was a young child if they'd seen her at all, and thus far her visits to Eternia had been short, as well as few and far between, since she had been busy fighting for Etheria's freedom. Now murmurs of approval rippled through the crowd, some saying how beautiful she was like her mother, how she and her brother looked so much alike, even though they were fraternal twins.
Later that afternoon there was a buffet type dinner. King Randor and Queen Marlena sat at the head of the long table, with Adam seated to his father's right and Adora across from Adam, on her mother's left. While she was in line Adora spotted her best friend Glimmer, and waved at her Glimmer Madam Razz and her other friends waved back, although she didnít have time to talk because her father King Randor had made three toasts to the guests, and Orko had sent the room rolling with some of his antics, which flubbed on the usual victim, Man-At-Arms.
Later Adora was walking amongst the guests, feeling just a little shy--not like herself. These were her father's friends and relatives.
Adam knew almost all of them, but Adora knew virtually none of them. Adora felt more at ease as her brother led her around and introduced her to various nobles. She soon found that she was accepted, and that she had earned a lot of people's respect because of her efforts on Etheria. More and more Adora relaxed. Then there was a little time before the ball and Adora knew she had to wrap Adamís presents still.
A few minutes later Adora went back to her room and closed the door. After making sure her brother wasnít in his room, she took the bag with his birthday presents off the top self of her closet, opened the bag and took out several items.
Suddenly there was a knock on the door which startled her. Adora quickly put the presents back in the bag and quickly throw it in the closet incase it was her brother. "Come in" she called. And in came her best friend Glimmer. Adora gave her best friend a hug. " I thought you were Adam."
"No, heís talking with Bow and my father. I somehow knew you had to grab your presents. You look very beautiful in that dress Adora. I almost didnít recognize you. Happy birthday."said Glimmer and handed her a wrapped package. "You can open it now. But you donít have to worry I already asked your Mother, I know you usually wait till later."Glimmer was wearing a beautiful lavender dress that went down to the floor and her hair was in curls.
Adora opened the package Glimmer had given her and saw a gold necklace, "Glimmer is beautiful Thank you."
"Youíre welcome." said Glimmer as she helped her put it on. I couldnít resist. Your Mother told me that she got you a necklace every year for your birthday and I asked her if I could get you one this year and she agreed. I was the one who told her you wanted a journal. You told me during the celebrations that you needed one."
Adora gave Glimmer another hug, "I am going to miss you so much after you and the others leave."
"Well weíre not planning on leaving for awhile."said Glimmer as she sat down and helped Adora wrap the remaining presents. "We thought weíd stay till at least after New Years that way we can spend sometime with you before you go. And we can lead you hand if you need one. James and Jasmine have already took to your parents. Your mother insisted that she will be their Ďadopted Grandparentsí since you and your brother arenít married yet."
"Well, they wonít have grandchildren for awhile because Adam and I have both agreed not to get married until Eternia is free. But that will change if Father dies, heís the heir."
"Well I hope my brother doesnít die anytime soon." said a voice. Glimmer and Adora looked up and saw Queen Angella walk in the room. She was wearing a light yellow dress and had a crown on her hair
"I hope not either Queen Angella."said Adora.
"Now Adora you donít have to be so formal. Please call me Aunt Angella. That goes for your brother Adam too. Your family. And your father is my brother. Iím your Aunt."
"I am sorry Aunt Angella. I am used to calling you Queen Angella. Finding out that you were our Aunt came so suddenly."
"I understand. I wish I was allowed to tell you sooner. Put this on youíll look and feel more like a princess."said Queen Angella and put a diamond tiara on her golden hair.
Adora looked at herself in the full length mirror."Youíre right Aunt Angella. I do look like a princess. But it does feel a little strange to resume her role as Princess of Eternia after thirteen years."
"It will take some time for you to get used to being a princess after all these years. Itís time to go to the ballroom for your party. I knew you had to get your presents. Are you ready?"Adora nodded
The three ladies headed down to the ballroom where the birthday party would be held.It was a special birthday for the twins. They'd celebrated their eighteenth and nineteenth together, but this was the first birthday in ten years that Adora was home for good. Adam and Adora's Etherian friends were also invited. The twins' birthday fell in the winter, three days before Christmas.
It was really a nice party, they danced, laughed and drank. In the late evening the Princess sat down next to her mother.
"I hope that Skeletor doesn't have the idea to come tonight", Adora whispered to her brother as she sipped her wine. Adam had asked her to try it. She had never had it before. It was a light fruity wine that she thought was very good.
"I hope not either. I want to relax on my birthday for once, so far he hasnít tried anything. Do you want to dance?"
Adam lead her across the dance floor and the musicians began to play. The two of them, struck up a stiff, cautious, dance position and began to move. But as the music flowed over them, they began to relax and fell into their normal relationship. Adam held her a little tighter and Adora began to let her guard down. They began to talk about how Cringer had been hiding earlier and laughing, and then they began talking of their childhood together, especially when Adam had first found Cringer. Before they knew it, many songs had passed.
At eleven thirty five it was time to blow out the candles on birthday cake. According to some Earth legend, however many candles are left lit after you try to blow them out indicates how many years it will take for your wish to come true.
Chef Allen, who had been a loyal servant to the king and Queen for many years, had baked Adam and Adora a huge birthday cake. Adam who was born 4 minutes and twenty-five seconds before Adora was blew out the candles first leaving no remaining. I smiled as I noticed Adam's cowardly tiger Cringer eyeing the cake. The cake had purple icing, and pink roses, which are Adam and my favorite colors
Adam sat there and blushed prettily as countless voices began singing "Happy Birthday Adam" in perfect unison. I had to keep my mind from wandering into the future. Four minutes and 25 seconds later, "Okay, Adora, let's see how many you can blow out," Adam said, laying a hand on my shoulder. Adora took a deep breath and blew as hard as I could. All twenty one candles blew out."Way to go Adora."Adam said.
The celebration had lasted all night, with wonderful performances in their honour by jugglers, acrobats, dancers, singers, musicians of all kinds. Man-E-Faces did a performance of a play the twins loved as children, and the emotional moment brought a tear to everyone's eye. Even Adora's. It was their twenty first birthday, after all, and we were all grown up now
He looked back across into the ballroom and a smile crossed his face. Orko had asked her to dance, and was being swung round the ballroom, his hat threatening to fall off. A small animal peeped out from underneath the back of it. He looked back at the moons, and his mind turned to the celebration of their birthday.
This was the first birthday for several years that Adora was able to be at home to celebrate it. It wasnít the same when she just came to visit and then she would have to go home, to Etheria again Just then he heard footsteps close by, he looked round. Adora was standing a little way off.
He wandered out onto a balcony off the room, and sat on the edge, looking up at the two Eternian
moons. She did look amazing, he thought. Quite different to normal, not that she wasnít normally,
well, beautiful, but she was his sister who lived on Etheria. Adora joined him"Sorry, I didnít realise there was anyone else out here, I just wanted some air." she said
"No its ok, I was just thinking about some things." Adam replied. "You know we have to sing in a few minutes."
"I know, We have done it every year since I can remember."
"Somewhere out there someone needs me. I donít know how or where but believe me. Iíll walked the universe to fine her For better or for worse beside her. ..." Adams strong, warm voice filled the room.
Adora smiled happily. It was their song, he sang. The celebration started. All her friends had come. And now he sang their song. He looked at her asking while singing the chorus making sure she was ready to start her part of the song.
The band began the second part and he threw a microphone to her. "A stranger walked into my world. And when he talked I really heard. He spoke of things like love and peace the joy it brings will never cease...."
After the song was finished King Randor asked for silence,"Of course there's no birthday without presents."
Later that night the King, the Queen, Adam and Adora, and some of their Etherian friends were sitting in the living room All of the guests were already gone.They were going to have a Christmas party in a few days and it wasnít worth Queen Angella and the others to leave so they were going to be staying at the Palace until after New years Day. David was also staying as well, for Christmas, so were his parents and little sister. David and the twins had been friends for years.
"So are you two excited about becoming older sibling?"David asked.
"Not really, I already have a younger sister. But it would kind of be neat to have a sister or brother thatís more then five minutes younger. And Adora will be able to find out what it feels like to be an older sibling. Mother, do you think youíll have twins again. You and Father are both twins. "
"Yes that is true Adam but that doesnít mean that I will have twins again, but your right there is a chance I will."said Queen Marlena."I just found out today that Iím seven months pregnant not six, the baby or babies if I have twins are due in February."
"Thatís great Queen Marlena."exclaimed Glimmer. "Adora was telling me that you were pregnant again. Congratulation."
"Thank you Glimmer. I must say you and Bow have very adorable children."said Queen Marlena who was holding their two year old son James. "Youíre allowed to call me Aunt Marlena, you are my sister in laws daughter after all. You can too Bow, you are part of our family after all."
"Thank you very much but I donít really feel that I am part of your family."said Bow.
"Bow that is nonsense."exclaimed Adora. "You are too part of our family, even if your not related though blood. Your like my older brother in a way, and you also were one of the few people of the Rebellion who made me feel welcome."
"Well Glimmer and I have been in the Rebellion for along time so we thought we should be the ones to make you feel at home. You did trust us with a valued secret."
"Yes, I did. I somehow knew I could trust you and I was right."said Adora."Iím glad I was able to tell my most trusted friends. It helped a lot especially when I needed to Ďdisappearí a couple of times."
"What do you think was the most difficult battle you ever had?"asked Glimmer.
"Hum good question. Well there has been a few, all included my brother."
"I think I know which ones your talking about. I have one too, but I donít think youíd remember it."
"Which one was that?"Adora asked her brother.
"The time when Hordak froze time."
"I barely remember that. But returning to the original question Glimmer I think the most hardest battle that I ever had was when Hordak started that war and I had to leave my brother to get help. I was so scared when I was told he was still in the cave holding up the walls, I fear the worst."
"Iím still alive today sis."said Adam. And if you hadnít gone for help I donít know what had happened."
"Iím not doing that again I can guarantee that. I donít want you to get hurt again."
"Donít worry I wonít get hurt again especially with you here. I just hope Hordak doesnít show up when Mother has her baby. If he does were in major trouble, especially if he teams up with Hordak again"
"Well Iím not worried. I have the two most powerful twins in the universe to protect me."
"That you do mother, but you canít call us Adam and Adora you know that right."said Adora.
"Donít worry I never have. I promised I would keep your secret when you two first told me Iím not about to let you down."said Queen Marlena."I would like both of you to be at the birth if Skeletor lets you that is."
"We will try Mother. One of us will be there, for sure." said Adam."It most likely will be Adora since she has assisted with child birth before."
"Thank you for volunteering me. But heís right I have assisted in a few births, including Glimmerís so I know what I am doing. Wait a minute you were there, so you know what to do too."
"Yes but it would be better if you help her, you know what your doing. I just happened to have a hand for Glimmer to squeeze."
"I hope I didnít hurt you."
"No, no trust me it didnít hurt. Iím just kidding. But seriously I was glad I could help."said Adam who was now holding two year old Jasmine.
"Thatís right my Mother is going to have a baby very soon."said Adam. Adam looked over at his mother, who had her hand on her belly. "You all right?" he asked.
"I'm fine. My baby is kicking around so much. Here, feel." Adam and Adora went over and placed their hands on their mother's belly. Sure enough, they could feel the child within.
"Me feel?"Jasmine said.
"Okay, Jasmine put your hand right here and you can feel the baby."said Queen Marlena.
"Baby kick."said Jasmine excitedly
"Yes, it certainty did kick. This baby is about as active as you two were. But as you know I didnít know I was having twins until Adora was born."
"We know Mom."Adam and Adora said in unison.
"I feel?"James asked
"Here--put your hand right here," said Queen Marlena
Jasmine placed a hand on her mother's belly. She felt her unborn cousin kicking. "In there?"
"That's right. The baby will be coming out in two months," said Queen Marlena. "Then we'll see whether it's a boy or a girl or both!"
A few days later Adam's nose was filled with the aroma of fresh popcorn as he opened the door, and entered the room. He had been at a conference all day and went to find his sister over break. The sights and sounds that immediately impacted him thereafter left him all but speechless. There were paper snowflakes and stars taped to the sitting roomís window, paper chains hung about the doorway, and on the coffee table sat a tiny Christmas tree. It couldn't have been more than the top portion of an artificial tree, but it was hung with colorful, homemade ornaments.
Adora, her back to the door, was winding a garland of popcorn around the branches, and as she worked, she sang:"It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Everywhere you go . . . ."
He had forgotten what a beautiful singing voice she had."Jasmine, stop eating the popcorn!" Adora chided suddenly.
"Mommy, where can I hang my sock?" Jasmine queried, holding up a red and white bootie with her name emblazoned in glitter on the cuff. Glimmer showed her daughter where to put her sock, which is what she called a stocking
"So, what do you think?" Adora inquired when she saw her twin brother enter the room
"You guys have done an awesome job," he replied. "I should have done this sooner . . . I have a whole bunch of ornaments and things around here somewhere --stuff Mom's been saving for me for years."
"I looked but couldn't find anything. I didnít feel right going into youíre room."
"I think I know where they're."said Adam.
"Mommy, can I ask you something? What does Santa do if you ask for a present that won't fit under a Christmas tree?" Jasmine wondered.
"He'll find some place to leave it," Adora assured her."He did in the Whispering woods, right."Jasmine nodded.
"Well, if you asked for something too big to put under a little tree, we'll just have to get us a tree big enough to put big presents underneath," Adam interrupted, his eyes lighting up at the thought.
"Come on; grab your coats and let's go."
"Go where?" Adora asked.
"To get a Christmas tree."
"But we have a tree already," Jasmine insisted.
"And it's a wonderful little tree, but I want to get a special one for our first Christmas together, as a family."
"Adam, how are we related?"Jasmine asked suddenly as they loaded the attack Trak."
"Well Adora and I are your Momís cousin so that would make us your....Godparents. Jasmine its complicated to explain. You can just call us Uncle Adam and Aunt Adora."
"Thatís right. We donít need to know how your related."said Adam."I think weíre you second cousin or something. It doesnít really matter."
"Slow down, Adam," Adora scolded as she struggled with her end of the plastic-bagged bundle. She was still shaking her head in amazement at Adam's behavior. He was almost as giddy as a little kid.
"Whoa!" Adam yelped as he momentarily lost his footing on the stairs and their burden shifted.
"Adam James, don't you dare fall on me!"
"Don't squish Dorey!"Jasmine squeaked.
"Just open the door, Jasie; this is heavy," Adam grunted. None too soon they squeezed their load through the doorway and scarcely had it inside when Adam started undoing the bindings.
"Why don't you wait until we know where we're going to put it," Adora recommended reasonably.
"How about right smack dab in the middle of the room?"
Adora merely gave him a hands-on-hips, don't-be-absurd look, which took none of the air out of Adam's bubble of happiness.
"Okay, how about against the far wall in front of the painting?" he compromised.
"Are you sure this tree is going to fit?" Adora wondered. Adam had spent what seemed like hours searching for what he considered the perfect tree. "It's awfully tall."
"It's not that much taller than I am, and I clear the ceiling with room to spare."
"You're not going to be propped up in a tree stand either."
"Don't worry; it'll fit." So saying, Adam stood the tree up on its trunk --or rather tried to stand it up. Adora rolled her eyes and shook her head. Jasmine giggled."There," Adam declared happily, standing back and regarding the evergreen with satisfaction. It as yet sported no trimmings, but it was standing up straight --finally.
"We are going to be picking up needles for a month of Sundays," Adora sighed, wincing as she stepped on a sharp quill. "Why a live tree? Wouldn't an artificial one have been a lot easier?"
"Just take a deep breath," he instructed, inhaling. Then, he let out a pleased sigh. "Doesn't that take you back to Christmas time when you were Andrew and Jasmine's age?"
Indeed it did. Adora could remember bubbling over with excitement, scarcely able to sit still while her Father and Uncle set up the tree. She had wanted to start decorating right away! Oh, and how the smell of that pine tree would fill the house. She could remember just sitting there watching the twinkling lights and smelling that wonderful fragrance
"A real Christmas tree, this is the best Christmas of my life." Jasmine breathed in wonder, her eyes saucer-wide and bright with excitement.
Glimmer felt warm all over as she basked in her daughter's joyous glow. Then, she noticed that Adam wore almost the exact same expression. "As gorgeous as it is, don't you think we should fancy it up?"
"Come on, the boxes are under my bed," Adam said, and the four of them quickly retrieved them.
"Where did you get all these?" Glimmer wondered as she began unpacking the ornaments.
"Our grandparents mostly," Adam explained as he attempted to untangle the lights. "Every Christmas since Adora and I were born Grandma and Grandpa Glenn, moms parents would send us an ornament for Christmas. After they died, Aunt Elsa continued the tradition."
"That's a very good idea," Glimmer said with a meaningful glance at Jasmine who was busy ogling the star for the tree top."Some of these are absolutely gorgeous," she murmured as she examined a delicate angel of blown glass.
"Father, would bring things home from the places he'd travel to on business trips. Our parents set Grandfather's share aside for us to be divided equally. That's where the lights and a few other goodies came from. The treeskirt was one Grandmother, Momís Mom crocheted."added Adora.
After several hours of tangled strings of lights, burned out bulbs, ornaments placed here then moved there, knotted garlands, and needle pricks, the trio stood back to admire their handiwork.
"Only one thing left," Adam declared, holding up the star.
"Who gets to do the honours?" Adora wondered.
"Can I?" Jasmine asked eagerly.
"How about we all do it," Adam suggested.
"What do you mean?" Adora queried. Suddenly Adora realized what he was planning "Adam you can't be serious. You canít lift both Jasmine and me at the same time. "
"Sure, I can. Jasmine, you take the star; Adora, you pick up Jasmine while I pick up you."
Adora yelped as Adam hoisted her up, and the three nearly toppled over into the tree, but they somehow managed to get the star in place. It was almost dark outside, and Adam shut off all the lights in the room except for the tree lights."It's the most beautifulest Christmas tree I've seen in my whole life," Jasmine murmured.
"You know what, Jasmine ; I think you're right," Adam agreed.
As they stood in the glow of the colored lights, he slid his arm around Adora's shoulder, and she leaned into him. She noticed that they each had a hand on one of Jasmine's shoulders, and she remembered her childhood again, standing with her parents before the newly decorated tree just as she and Adam and Jasmine stood now.
"Stephen Williams, get your fingers out of there!" Jan scolded.
It was Christmas morning at the Palace of Eternia was filled with bustling activity, the sumptuous aroma of cooking food, "I was just trying to help . . . ." Stephen protested.
"Help --ha! James is more of a help than you!" Jan snorted. "Go on; get out of here!"
As Adam emerged from the basement with a load of folding chairs, his Uncle passed him and winked."Works every time," Stephen chuckled conspiratorially.
"Uncle Stephen". . . ." Adam said."I'll be in the basement if anyone needs me."
Adam entered the kitchen in time to hear his Aunt confide to Adora, "He's not fooling anyone; he's been pulling this for years. I let him get away with it because he really is more of a nuisance in the kitchen than a help."
"Here are the chairs; where do you want them?" Adam queried, stifling a smile.
"Clean them off first, then put them in the dining room --where else?" Marlena directed. "I'm going to see if I can find the good table cloth Aunt Elsa gave us."
"You know Adora Iíve never celebrated Christmas with family before."said Glimmer. As a child I never did celebrate Christmas. I didnít start celebrating Christmas until three years ago.
"Well, this year, you have the real thing with all the trimmings, even if you do have to help cook it and clean up afterwards." Adora said with a cheery grin."Youíre part of our family now. Every year well be able to do this.Ive done it since I can remember"
"It wouldn't be a real Christmas without the clean up, itís a lot better then the ones we had in the Whispering Woods. Actually, I don't mind. I'm enjoying myself, and I know Jasmine and James are really excited. I think they've been in here every five minutes wondering when it'll be 'turkey' time."
"Well, now that Dad's been officially exiled from the kitchen, we can assign him to James and Jasmine detail," Adam chuckled.
"Adam, haven't you finished with those chairs yet?" Marlena demanded as she returned with the table cloth. "I need you to get down the good china. I donít like being the shortest in the family"
Adam and Adora traded grins and set about their appointed tasks.
"Jasmine." Adora called as she carried a stack of plates into the dining room. "Come help me set the table." Chef Allen, the royal chef had gone on vacation after the twins birthday so Marlena and Adora was cooking dinner this year.
"Ooh, Dorey, the table looks fancy!"
"It sure does," Adora agreed. Marlena had told her that she'd been waiting for a good excuse to get "the good stuff" out. It wasn't worth the hassle for just the four of them.
"These dishes are very pretty," Jasmine gushed as she held up a plate.
"Careful," Adora cautioned. It wasn't as if her mother could run out and buy replacement pieces.
She had purchased the dinnerware when she had visited Tokyo on leave while she was living on earth. Adora found the simple black and grey brush-stroke painting that curved along the bottom and side of the dishes very elegant.
"Ooh, it looks just like in all the pictures!" Jasmine exclaimed as Marlena set the turkey on the
dining room table. Her eyes were wide and her face practically glowing."There's so much food here," Jasmine continued to gush, turning to Adora. "I don't think we'll be able to eat all this, Dorey."
"Don't worry, Jasmine; we'll be eating leftovers for a month of Sundays," Adora assured her.
"It's time to settle down, Sweetheart,"Glimmer said even as Jasmine eyed the sweet potatoes dubiously.
"Everything was wonderful, Marlena," David said. "If Adam had told us what a great cook you were, we'd have accepted the invitation to dinner long ago."
"Flattery will not get you out of cleaning up," Marlena responded with a knowing grin.
"I told you, David," Adam laughed. "You're 'family' not 'company.'"
"Can we go play now?" Jasmine and James asked in unison.
"I'm surprised you can even move with as much as you ate," Glimmer remarked.
"It was all so good," Jasmine replied in her defense.
"Let's take your plate to the counter, and you two may be excused,"Glimmer agreed. Very carefully, the girl and boy carried their plates and silverware into the kitchen.
"Adam, are you done with this?" Adora asked, collecting plates for her trip to the kitchen.
"Let me get those; you and Mom have done enough already."Both Marlena and Adora stared after him in amazement as he vanished into the kitchen.
"I don't know what you've done to that brother of yours, but I wish you'd do it to my husband, too," Marlena chuckled, and Stephen and Randor flashed her a wounded puppy look.
"Adam's right," David agreed, rising and collecting dishes also. "We'll take care of cleaning up."
"Does that mean I'm off the hook?" Randor asked hopefully.
"No," Marlena countered. "It's sweet of you to offer, David, but I'm not sure I trust you and Adam alone in the kitchen."
"All done, Mommy; can I go outside now?" James queried.
"Can she, Mommy?" Randor quipped in a little girl voice that had Jasmine giggling. "I have a surprise for her and James out in the garage.
Both turned hopeful puppy-eyes at her, and Randor stifled a smile as she looked over at Glimmer who nodded imperceptibly. "Oh, all right. Why don't all the 'grandparents' go, and I'll keep Adam and David in line."
"That's okay, Adora . . . ." Marlena protested.
"Come on, Glimmer," Bow urged. "When was the last time you were excused from cleaning up the carnage?"
Shaking her head with amusement, Adora watched as Jasmine took Randor by the hand and tugged him towards the front door Gathering up an armload of dishes, she headed to the kitchen where Adam and David were loading the dishwasher."You are scraping the plates off before you put them in there, aren't you?" she queried.
"Yes, Mother," Adam muttered good-naturedly. "Don't worry; Mom trained me better than she thinks."
"I don't know about that," Adora snickered, noting the water he had gotten all over his shirt. "Here." With an impish grin, she looped the bib of her Motherís frilly apron around his neck, and she laughed as Adam eyed it dubiously.
"It suits you," David teased.
"Watch it; I'm sure Mom has another one around here just your size."
"I'm not the one making a mess with the water," David remarked. Adam reached for the spray nozzle with mischief in his eyes.
"Adam James! See, mother was right about not trusting you two in here alone," Adora scolded.
"I'll take over the sink; you go clean the table." With hand on hip, she pointed towards the dining room for added emphasis.
"Yes, ma'am, and I thought I was the older one" Adam said, saluting as he marched off. Adora turned to the sink and found David regarding her with amusement.
"You are, but your still a child at heart." said Adora. Adora knew the reason why he was acting like a child but knew he still was a child at heart even if he didnít have to pretend
"Adora, Adam, come see this!" She gratefully turned off the water and wiped her hands. David stood in the doorway and glanced back to see if Adora and Adam had heard him. She and Adam hurried out to join him. He stood back to let Adora in front so she could see as she was shorter then her brother and David were.
"Mommy! Mommy! Look at me!" James shouted as he madly pedaled down the pathway on a pint-sized bicycle with training wheels.
"Hey, that's my first bike!" Adam realized.
"I knew father hated to get rid of things, but . . . ." Adora began. Adam opened the door, and the clean-up crew stepped out onto the porch.
"Look at him go," David murmured.
"A regular lil' daredevil," Adam added.
"I don't believe it; he's never been on a bike before," Glimmer said quietly.
Adora was deep in thought as she soaked in a nice, warm bubble bath late that afternoon; the Christmas party was in a couple of hours. She was finally home for good After a time she drained the water out of the tub and stepped out; then she dried herself and put a robe on.
"Okay, itís time to get ready," she told her. She sat behind her on her bed, took up a comb from her nightstand, and began combing her sandy coloured hair. Jasmine sat there patiently until she was done, being the well-mannered little girl that she was.
Adora put on a deep-blue dress that had a form-fitting bodice and a full skirt that cleared her ankles. The top of the dress was much like She-Raís minidress: it left her shoulders, arms bare. "Iím dressed now," she told her sister
"Yeah weíll be the best of friends too."said Jasmine as Adora helped her into her dress that her mother had brought with them.
"Well you have to remember that she will be a lot younger then you."said Adora."Your already four years old. You have to be very careful with the babies.. "
"Okay Dorey."said Jasmine
"You get to see Santa tonight"
"Whoís Santa?"asked Jasmine.
"Heís a jolly old man who brings presents on Christmas Eve to all the boys and girls." explained Adora who secretly knew her Grandfather was going to dress up this year.
"Yeah!!" Will he bring me a pick bike?"said Jasmine who really wanted one.
"I donít know have you been good this year?"said Adora just as her mother came into the room
"Mommy have I?"said Jasmine excitedly
"Have you what?"asked Glimmer
"Been good this year so I can get a pink bike from Santa."
"Yes, you have. Is Santa coming to the party?"asked Glimmer her daughter nodded excitedly.
"Thatís what Dorey said."said Jasmine.
"Okay why donít you go find your father while I finish getting ready." suggested Glimmer
"Okay Mommy." said Jasmine and ran down the corridor to her brothers room
"Whoís dressing up this year I didnít know anyone was."
"Grandfather, donít worry I already talked to him and he said heíd love to do it. We found my old bike and re painted it. Everything going to be fine, that is if Skeletor and Hordak donít ruin it for everybody again."