Chapter 3.28: Dear Diary, Leo’s Vineyard

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Dear Diary, we finally made it to Monte Vista! I say “finally” because turning over a farm to your brother and then getting seven other people out the door is quite the adventure!

Leo Jr. took the ferry with us to the mainland because we thought we’d need his help carrying everything. It was then that we found out Bootsie gets motion sickness. We’d intended to bring him along as even though he is a dog, he’s a genuine member of the family. Since we weren’t staying in a hotel or resort, we thought it would be a perfect arrangement but the motion sickness quickly changed our minds. Leo Jr. ended up taking him back home, so it’s a good thing he went with us that far.

It was late afternoon when the cabs pulled up outside the villa gates. I decided to take the family in through the side entrance since that is the one we always used when Daddy brought me here as a child.

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“Do we really have this whole place to ourselves?” Charles asked, his eyes growing huge as he stared at the house.

“Yes, we will be the only ones here. When I was a little girl, there were always a ton of people here with Daddy and me. Uh, I mean, Grandpa.”

“What kind of people?” Laurent asked as I unlocked the gates and opened them.

“All sorts of people. There were always guests… other musicians, actors, people who were invited to stay for interviews… that kind of thing.

“Did you grow up here, Momma?” Susan asked.

Peering up at the main building, my breath caught in my throat. I’d forgotten the wonderful times I’d had here and the lengths my father went to in order to make sure I was happy.

“Momma?”

“Oh!” I smiled when I realized I’d missed Susan’s question. After she repeated it, I said, “No, I lived in Storybrook for a short time, then Bridgeport with Grandpa. When I was still a child, we moved to Hidden Springs to a large house on a lake.”

“As large as this house?” Carrie called over her shoulder. As I suspected, she was already warming up to our vacation.

“It was bigger, actually.”

“And you were the only two that lived there? That seems silly!” Susan said.

“Doesn’t it?” I agreed. “Grandpa used to say it was easier having security in a bigger house than a smaller one. I’m not sure why, but he believed it to be true.”

By now, Matthieu and Marty were miles ahead of me, already stepping up onto the veranda. From behind, I could see Marty furtively glancing at Matthieu as if she wanted to be sure he was adjusting.

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Catching up, I scooted past Matthieu and Marty and led them past the front door to the entrance off the kitchen. “Let’s go in this way.”

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Quickly, I gave them a tour of the house. In the living room, I paused in front of Dad’s piano, running my hand along its smooth surface. If I listened hard enough, I could imagine him playing something brilliant he’d composed.

Going upstairs, the memories continued to flood my mind as I showed the girls the room they would be staying in… my old room. It wasn’t nearly as sentimental as it would have been had I shown them my room in Hidden Springs, but it still tugged at my heart.

When I opened the door to the room that used to be almost empty and used as a study of sorts, I realized it had been redone for Leo Jr. There were two beds and luckily, I had only two boys.

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We were all starving and I knew the refrigerator would be stocked for us, so I began to make some spaghetti. It felt so good to use modern appliances and I have to say, Matt seemed pretty amazed, watching everything I did with a close eye.

“These appliances are pretty cool, right?”

Grimacing, he said, “They’re terrifying.”

“You won’t give them another thought once you learn how to use them.” Pausing to look at him, I added, “Why are you staring so intently?”

“I’m making sure you don’t get hurt.”

Laughing, I said, “I may not have used a food processor in years, but I know what I’m doing.”

27

Dinner was amazing. We sat in comfortable chairs and leisured our way through the meal, chatting about life and discussing what we would do the next day. We didn’t exactly rush through meals at home in Winchester, still, I enjoyed this time with my family. I had a feeling with Charles’ birthday so close, this family might not all be together like this very often.

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The dishes were a breeze. I showed the kids how to rinse them off and put them in the dishwasher and they showed the proper enthusiasm although they claimed that Leela had shown this to them previously. The cleaning up dishes rule became that everyone rinsed and put their own place setting in the dishwasher then washed one pot or pan. With that in place, the dishes were done in no time.

Everyone was dead on their feet, so I told the kids to get into their pajamas and relax in their rooms while I took the garbage out. I had just put the lid back on the trashcan and stopped to yawn when I realized I wasn’t alone. On the other side of the gate stood a teen with heavy lidded eyes and a curious half-smile. A local.

“Yes?” I asked, coming closer. To my embarrassment, I couldn’t stop another yawn from escaping me.

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“Do you speak Italian?” he asked.

Shaking my head, I said, “I’m really rusty.”

“Uh, yes, okay. I saw you arrive with your family and thought perhaps your children would like to hang out,” he said in perfect English.

“I’m afraid they’ve already gone to bed. We are very tired from our travels. Perhaps another time.”

Nodding, he smiled politely and said, “Have a good evening.”

“You, too,” I murmured as he strode away into the night.

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Climbing the stairs, all I could think about was how I was ready to fall in bed. Except that my husband was standing there, looking all handsome.

“That was the best!” he grinned.

Seeing his hair was wet, I chuckled. “You took a shower. I have to admit, I’ve been really looking forward to that.”

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Pulling me into his strong arms, his damp skin pressed against me, he smiled as he looked into my eyes. “I know you were afraid I wouldn’t have an open mind. I want you to know, though, that I love you and am so glad you chose to bring us here.”

No matter how many times he told me he loved me, it somehow always felt like the first time when we were on the beach under the stars. Nuzzling my cheek next to his, I whispered into his ear, “I think we’re going to have a good night.”

And we definitely did.

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The sun was barely up the next morning when I heard the kids as they got up, teased one another, had a bite to eat and ran for the pool. They’d never been in a swimming pool before and couldn’t wait to see if they liked it.

The morning was warm and sunny, yet not humid like Winchester always became.

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After my shower, I realized I was alone in the house. Roaming outside, I knew it wouldn’t take a genius to find Matthieu. He was exactly where I thought he’d be.

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Our first order of the day was to take the children to the village. We’d no sooner given them money and instructions when they were off by themselves to explore. There wasn’t much going on here as it hadn’t changed all that much from my memory of what it used to be like. So, I was pretty sure they would stay out of trouble.

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Matthieu and I enjoyed cappuccinos on the balcony of a coffee shop. From there, we had a perfect view of the village. Once in a while, we caught sight of the kids as they went from one place to another.

Later on, we roamed Monte Vista, too, visiting the museum first and holding hands.

30

It was early evening before we knew it and time to meet up with the children. Surprisingly, they looked worn out. Lissie was sneezing like crazy and the others looked like zombies.

“Are you guys tired?” I asked, amazed.

“I’m beat!” Charles said. “It’s not easy keeping this group together and everyone was arguing about what we should do.”

“So we just did it all!” Marty said brightly.

“Wait. Where’s Carrie?” I asked.

They all looked around with confusion in their eyes.

31

“Over here,” Laurent mumbled, his attention completely taken by whatever he was staring at.

Once Matthieu and I rounded the corner, we saw that Carrie was standing particularly close to the boy I had met the night before at the gate.

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Before I could stop him, Matthieu made a beeline for the young pair, his stride firm.

“Daddy,” Carrie said, “this is Luca Rossi. He’s from Monte Vista.”

“Hello,” Matt said, stiffly shaking the boy’s hand. “I’m Mr. Larochette and this is Mrs. Larochette.”

Luca slightly nodded as if that was a proper greeting and all at once, I could see this conversation was going to go downhill fast.

“We’re going to a movie together tonight.”

I raised an eyebrow but it was Matt who responded. “No, no. We have plans.”

“Daddy!”

“Carrie!”

“Caroline.”

Apparently, it’s Caroline now.

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“Look, uh, Mr. Larochette, I get that you don’t know me and all, but I think your daughter is cute and she already told me she could go to the movie. It’s really up to her anyway.”

Where is your mother, young man? I asked myself.

“Perhaps, you could come to the house sometime for dinner and we’ll discuss arrangements from there,” I suggested. However, Matthieu was already put off.

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“Or,” he said, “you can turn around and walk away from my daughter and never look back!”

Luca’s jaw dropped and he stared dumbly at my husband. “B-but – ”

“I’d start walking now.”

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“How could you embarrass me like that?” Carrie screamed after Luca was out of earshot.

“Lower your voice at once,” I said, glaring at her.

“I will not lower my voice! I will never ever do another thing either of you tells me again!” I’d like to add here that as she said this, she stamped her foot then winced because she accidentally hit her bare toe on the pavement.

“Let’s get back to the house where we can talk about this in private,” I said.

39

Carrie gaped at us as her eyes filled with tears. Suddenly she began to sob into her arm. “I don’t want to go back to the house. I want to run away and never come back!”

Matthieu threw up his hands and began grouping the kids up for the walk home. I took Carrie’s arm and steered her in the direction of the others.

“Let go of me! You’re treating me like a child!” she wailed.

“You are a child,” I said as I propelled her in the right direction.

By the time we got home, she was walking of her own accord, although dragging her feet. We sent her upstairs to her room to think things over.

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And that is how she missed Charles’ birthday. With the celebrating this family puts on, I soon forgot the unpleasantness from earlier and watched as my oldest child became a young adult…

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… and my youngest child refused cake again.

 

48 thoughts

  1. Matt, in clothes other than his overalls! How nice!
    I’ve been trying to find a comment in regards to all the new things they are experiencing, but none of any success has come to mind. Although, I grew up with only a tub till adulthood, and I remember being able to shower the first time and how exciting and new that was.

    If Carrie’s parents aren’t careful, it’s not just an aggressive and rude teenage boy they will end up dealing with, but pregnancy as well.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Bee! 🙂 I liked seeing Matt in something different, too. And it was so nice to dress Blue and the girls! 🙂

      You are probably right about Carrie. I have a feeling she thinks she’s grown up enough for boys, but her behavior definitely suggests otherwise. Of course, she’s been talking about marriage since she was a kid but they need to keep a close watch on this girl.

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  2. Oops, I see the old Blue coming out in “Caroline”!! I hope they don’t go to bed after all the celebration and find her gone! Matthieu will come unglued on that boy!! And Susan – one piece of cake is not going to kill you!! =( It’s fun to see people introduced to new things, and Matthieu is seeing a lot! Great chapter, and now I have to wait a week to see how the teenage angst turns out – darn!!

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    1. Yes, I could see some of Blue in Carrie, too. Uh, I mean Caroline! lol You’re right that they should check on her at bedtime! :O And you’re also right that Matthieu would come unglued on that boy! Yes, Susan, have a piece of cake, it’s okay. lol

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    1. It took me a little bit to get a feel for the other girls, but I think I’m getting an understanding of them now. 🙂 I have an idea for each of them for Gen 4 since I don’t know who will be moving on. I totally agree that Blue needs to check on Carrie and KEEP an eye on her, too! lol

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  3. Ohhh Carrie! I can’t believe she talked back like that! I guess it doesn’t matter how you are brought up, when hormones kick in and the opposite sex is involved, nobody understands her especially that she is now Caroline instead of Carrie! lol. But I do think Luca could be a bit of trouble. He seems rebellious. Maybe that’s why ‘Caroline’ liked him.

    It was nice to see everyone in different clothes. Matthieu was so handsome in his polo.

    Charles reminds me a lot of his grandfather, Leo.

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    1. LOL @ “…especially that she is now Caroline instead of Carrie!” Oh, that had me rolling. 😀 I think Carrie will probably only get away with talking back like that once. 😛 Just a guess, anyway.

      As for Luca, he does have some interesting traits and one of them is Rebellious. How did you ever guess? 😀 😛

      I thought the same thing about Charles! 🙂

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  4. OH I see trouble with Carrie coming and fast. That boy at the gate is up to no good and Blue is going to become a grandma before any of her kids even get married.
    Carrie Carrie Carrie.

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    1. You have a good instinct! lol You are right that Luca is trouble with a capital “T!” Let’s hope Blue and Matt stop anything like that before it can happen. I don’t think she’s ready to be a grandma just yet.

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  5. I’m glad Matt’s settling in okay. It was cute that he chose to watch Blue make dinner, just to make sure she didn’t get hurt. ❤

    The kids seem like they're settling in okay. Exploring, trying new things, though it probably just feels like a vacation right now to them, not a potentially new home. Charles looks like a very handsome mix of his parents! A good looking young man, with a wide open future!

    Carrie, though…she's gonna give her father early gray hairs. She might look like Matt, but I see a mile-wide, rebellious Blue streak in her. Blue might need to address this threat of running away sooner rather than later.

    Awesome chapter! Looking forward to what happens next! ^_^

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, fluffymao 🙂

      The kids have done really well in their new setting, as you said. Charles is still trying to take charge of his younger siblings and not all of them are having it, though. haha

      You are so right about those early gray hairs for Matt! haha She definitely has Blue’s more rebellious streak. Hopefully, Blue can nip this in the bud.

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    1. I do think you’re right about that. The kids have been exposed in little bits over time by spending time with Leo and Leela. But this is all at once for Matthieu. I think he’s trying to take it in stride, but he probably can’t wait to get back to Winchester and his farm.

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  6. Goodness! So much happening. Wasn’t it Carrie that opposed Marty’s new clothes and thought they were ridiculous? It looks like she’s got a streak of just plain contrariness! Interesting and oh so like Blue… I think maybe Blue needs to sit her down and have that talk of empathy and letting her know she knows exactly how she feels but what happened to her with her mother getting pregnant and abandoning her, it could be a pattern. The hard truth may help or if she has a rebel mind, justify her actions. Kids are hard to predict. They use info as an excuse or to change the circumstance. The kid, in the meantime is trouble.

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    1. I couldn’t agree with you more! Luca is rebellious to the core. I think your approach to the situation is the best way to go. Blue hasn’t had to deal with this problem yet, so hopefully, she’ll do as you suggest. Whatever she decides to do, this had better get nipped in the bud or there could be real trouble ahead.

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      1. I see she did deal with it as I imagined best. Btw, in the survey, why did you not have either of the boys included. Perhaps Laurent? Of the girls, I would say, the most conservative with an awakening through a series of crashing events in her future. We’ve had the wild child, but perhaps the opposite.

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        1. Thank you so much, Jolie. I really felt like you were right about how to handle Carrie in this situation.

          In a way, I would have loved to have had Laurent become the heir. After some thinking about it, I decided that I didn’t feel up to writing a male’s perspective yet. Writing Leo took a lot out of me because I had to think, okay, what would a guy say or do, though? lol If I was able to write this in third person, I don’t think writing a male would be as difficult. I do think there will be male heirs in the future, I just wasn’t ready quite yet. 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh dear… I was hoping there wouldn’t be any drama on this vacation o.o Luca seems like trouble, especially how he so blatantly said ‘I think your daughter is cute and…’. Carrie certainly is a child and I hope that Blue can sit down and talk some sense into her.
    It’s so strange to see the family in modern clothes! I just hope that the visit to the modern world will affect the children for the better. And Charles grew up so well 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Lila. 🙂 Luca was incredibly rude and forward, it’s true. And that can only mean trouble for Carrie. I hope, as you said, Blue can sit down with her and straighten her out.

      I thought it was strange seeing the family in those clothes, too. But it felt so good dressing them normally! LOL I am absolutely ecstatic that we’re almost to Gen 4! lol

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  8. Gah, I’m so late. How did it ever come to this? Oh, I know, I know. Airports and stuff!
    Why do I get a Chrissy feel with Luca? He just seems like that same kind of a rebellious teenager. “Dear Diary, Meet Trouble” would so fitting now as well. I thought it was weird that the chapter is called Leo’s Vineyard because I couldn’t picture Blue calling her dad Leo. Seems so off!Oh well, I hope “Caroline” doesn’t get herself into trouble.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Jowita! I hope you’re still enjoying your trip!

      I hadn’t drawn the comparison between Chrissy and Luca but I can definitely see it now that you mentioned it.

      I reckon you’re right about the title. I kind of goofed on this one because I wasn’t coming up with any good ideas. lol 😛

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Luca is too good looking to be trusted. Blue and Matt aren’t going to be able to relax 100% on this vacation. Speaking of Matt, he looks so cute in “civilian” clothing.
    Also, I can’t believe how much Charlie looks like him. These children are going up too fast!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh, when I saw Luca at first I thought Lizzie would be the one falling for him, but I guess I was wrong. Two rebellious teens united! Umm…that can’t be good. (Is Carrie even rebellious?)
    I loved seeing the family in normal clothes! Matt ❤
    Aaaand I'm finally caught up!! Woot!!! *throws confetti all over the place* I'm so excited for this, but unfortunately now I'll have to wait for the next update….no more binge reading!! 😭
    But it's been a blast reading your legacy and I can't wait for more! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Awww thank you so much! ❤ Your words are so kind and I'm thrilled you have enjoyed reading thus far. (I threw confetti, too 😀 )

      It was such a relief to dress these people in normal clothing. haha I really enjoyed it so much.

      When we have the heir poll, I'll list all the girls traits so you can better judge what you want to see in Gen 4. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I have no idea how I missed this update! Anyway, this trip is proving to establish a lot of character arcs. Carrie is coming to her own and I’m pretty interested in the idea of her possibly falling in love with this foreign boy. Although, Marty still interests me as well. I know next chapter is the poll, so this is going to be tough! Onward I go!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Okay, so Carrie is most likely going to be the boy-crazy one. Lots of drama to be had, but am not sure I can last a generation with her. I’m leaning more and more towards Susan, but we’ll see… The trip is a much needed break from the farm life and what-not. I love it. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I knew that boy was trouble. I mean Carrie should have known better to say she could go out without asking her parents first. It’s not like the rules have changed just because they’re not at home. She’s going to be a handful. Not sure who I want to see be the heir. I want to see more of the boys. The girls kind of overshadow them. I’ll probably vote for one of them because they’re cute and I always go for the underdog.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That boy is trouble for sure. And I agree that Carrie should have known better than to even think about going out without discussing it her parents.

      Oh dear, I think at the end of a previous chapter, I mentioned the poll was going to be with the girls only. I hope this doesn’t throw a wrench in things for you. I’m terribly sorry. I always like the underdog, too.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Well, that situation could have been handled better by all parties I think xD Luca is super rude, plus he seems like bad news after turning up at their gate the night before. How creepy! Had he spotted Carrie even then??
    Still, she is a teenage girl happy to get attention, but I don’t have a lot of patience for tantrums even though I have thrown many myself when I was younger xD

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much. I think you are right that it could’ve been handled better by all parties. Luca does seem a bit creepy when you put together his strange appearance at the gate the night before he met Carrie officially.

      I don’t have much patience for tantrums either. lol 😀

      Liked by 1 person

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