Commander Beverly Crusher, M.D., groaned when she heard the chimes indicating that someone was at her door. And seeing as how she was still in her office at Starfleet Medical combined with the fact that it was nearing midnight the late night caller could not be the bearer of good news. Rubbing her tired eyes she laid the padd she had been reading down and tried to fix her hair into some semblance of order. “Come!” She called out and straightened in her chair; all signs of fatigue skillfully hidden. When the door opened she couldn’t help but gasp and stumble to her feet almost tripping in her haste. She flung herself unceremoniously into waiting arms.
“Mom.” The newly arrived Wesley Crusher smiled and hugged his mother as tightly as she was hugging him. And just like that mother and son laid eyes on each other after five years of estrangement. “I missed you.” He mumbled emotionally into her thick red hair.
“I missed you too.” Beverly practically sobbed and only left go when she was all cried out. She held her wayward child at arm length and took in his appearance. “You look good; healthy.”
Wesley chuckled. “Always a Doctor.” He commented and took a moment to look around her office. “Starfleet Medical huh?” He questioned.
Beverly used the sleeve of her uniform to wipe the excess moisture from the corner of her eyes. “The Enterprise just didn’t feel like home anymore.” She explained with a sad smile then lead the way over to a sofa that sat against back wall. Sitting she patted the spot beside her. “What have you been doing these last five years that you didn’t have time to stop in and tell your mother that you were still alive?” She asked slightly accusatory. “Traveling still?”
“Five years?” Wesley asked slightly in disbelief. “Its only been five years?” This was more to himself than his mother. “As to what have I been doing? I’ve been living life.” He smiled a smile of a happy man. “I’m sorry I didn’t tell you I was okay. I guess I just got caught up in what I was doing.”
“You’ve been living life? Whats that suppose to mean?” Beverly felt five years of repressed anger beginning to bubble to the surface. “And it might have been only five years to you but it felt like a lifetime to me!” She snapped.
Unfazed by his mothers anger he stood and shoved his hands into the pockets of his pants. This action caused him to look much younger than he was. “Maybe it’d be better if I showed you?” Closing his eyes he forced himself to relax and when he reopened them the door to the office opened and blur ran in at top speed and attached itself to his leg.
Beverly, surprised, jumped to her feet. “What?” It took her a moment to realize that the blur was actually a little girl with blonde hair and grey eyes. “Wes?” She swallowed hard as eyes identical to her sons stared back at her.
“Mom I’d like to introduce you to your granddaughter Keziah. Kezi can you say hello to your grandma?” Wesley asked as he reached down and picked the five year old up so that the two could get a better look at each other.
Keziah Beverly Summers-Crusher was very bright for her age; a trait she inherited from her father. Tilting her head to the side she regarded the older woman for a moment. “Are you really my gamma?”
“I have a granddaughter?” Beverly covered her mouth with her hand as tears welled up in her eyes once again. She reached out her other hand and brushed it through the little girls soft hair.
“More than just a granddaughter actually.” A new voice said from the door. “Can we come in now or do we have to keep waiting out there?” She asked while pointing over her shoulder with her thumb.
Wesley held out his free hand and pulled the petite blonde closer to him. “Sorry I got caught up in the moment.” He apologized sheepishly. Clearing his throat he gave his mother a thousand watt smile. “And this lovely lady is my wife Buffy Anne Crusher.”
Grunting Buffy allowed her husband to pull her close and she smiled at the red head. She now knew why Wes was always comparing her to Willow. The resemblance was uncanny. “Summers-Crusher.” She corrected with a fond smile.
Beverly’s brain was in overload. She offered the blonde, her daughter-in-law, a weak smile. “Nice to meet you.” Feeling a tug on her pant leg she looked down and blinked. Staring up at her were the biggest pair of hazel eyes she had ever seen. So caught up in the moment she hadn’t even realized that Buffy had entered with two more children. “I think I need to sit down.” Taking a step backward her legs hit the previously vacated sofa and she sat with a quiet umpf. Now that she was seated she was eye to eye with the little boy that had wanted her attention. “And whats your name?” She managed to ask after taking a moment to gather her wits about her.
“Jack Alexander Summers-Crusher and I’m four years old!” The little blonde with hazel eyes announced proudly then looked expectantly at his mother. “She looks like Aunt Willow.”
“Yes she does.” Buffy chuckled and sat the squirming boy in her arms down onto his feet. “No wondering off.” She chided the littlest blonde. “Don’t be shy Adrian. Go say hello to your grandma.” Gently she pushed him into the direction of his brother and grandmother.
“You’re name is Adrian?” Beverly asked as the little boy half hid behind his brother. “And how old are you?”
Jack frowned as his little brother practically clung to him. “Adrian Rupert.” He added. “And he’s two.” He held up two fingers. “He doesn’t talk much so don’t feel bad.”
“He talks plenty Jack.” Wesley told his oldest son. “He’s just shy around people he doesn’t know. Isn’t that right buddy?” He gave the little boy in question a smile.
Beverly sat back on the sofa. “I can’t believe my baby has babies.” She mumbled.
Buffy smiled. “With a combined forty-eight hours of labor I can assure you all three little monsters belong to my man.” Her hand drifted to her stomach where it rested on a tiny bump. “It’ll be five in six months actually.”
“You’re pregnant?” Beverly asked in surprise then was on her feet and hugging the small blonde. “Do you know what you’re having?” She asked after pulling back.
“My sister is certain its going to be one of each and seeing how she’s three for three I’m inclined to believe her.” Buffy told her with a roll of her eyes. “And then we’re done. Five is my limit. We barely handle three and that’s with the help of my entire extended family. These two are going to bring Cleveland to its knees. It’s already been predicted.” She said with certainty.
Beverly shook her head. “I’m finding it hard to get my head wrapped around the fact that I’m a grandma. Why didn’t you visit sooner?”
Wesley put his daughter down. “Its complicated.” He explained. “Buffy isn’t exactly from around here.”
“Ohio right? Cleveland is in Ohio the last time I looked.” Beverly raised an eyebrow at her son. “Its not even a fifteen minute shuttle ride from the east coast to here.” She pointed out.
“We actually split our time between Ohio and Scotland. But that’s not what I meant mom. I mean Buffy isn’t from this time.” Wesley told her.
Buffy grinned. “I look good for being hundreds of years old don’t I?”
Beverly blinked. “Not from this time?” She was quiet for a long moment. “How’d you meet then?”
“Ten years ago he just appeared out of nowhere. Me and my friends nursed him back to health and two years later we got married. He told me everything of course and he does continue to travel but he always comes home to me.” Buffy explained. “Visiting you just recently became possible for me and the kids. It took Wes this long to figure out how to do it. And with the birth of the twins just around the corner he figured now was a good time.”
“I honestly don’t know what to say.” Beverly told them as she watched her three grandchildren playing on the floor. “Will I see you again? Them?”
Wesley sighed. “Honestly I don’t know. If its possible we will. If not know that I love you. That we all love you. We gotta go now. Remember!”
Beverly watched right before her eyes as her son and his family seemed to just disappear. Had she not touched them she would have thought herself dreaming. And it was the thought and memory of them that got her through many dull, strenuous, years as head of Starfleet Medical. And then exactly eight years to the day of their visit she returned to her office from having lunch with the newly appointed Admiral, and just as new husband, Jean-Luc Picard to find a single photo sitting on the center of her desk. Picking it up she took in the familiar faces, granted older than the last time she’d seen them, and some not so familiar. Turning it over she read the names written in Wesley’s handwriting on the back; Wesley Robert, Buffy Anne, Keziah Beverly, Jack Alexander, Adrian Rupert, Joy Felisa, William Howard, and Isabel Jordan. Under the names was two sentences. One proclaimed Merry Christmas from the Summers-Crusher Family - 2021
. And the other in what could only be Buffy’s handwriting stating Six was a much more round number than five
. Smiling she propped it up against a pile of padds and made a mental note to have it framed. Her smile turned slightly evil when she thought about telling Jean-Luc that he, by default, was a grandfather not just to one child but to six of them. If anyone had entered her office at that moment they’d wonder when the head of Starfleet Medical had gone insane.