When last we left the Langeraks the twins had just grown into teenagers. Kaylynn and Benjamin made sure that the kids stayed focused on their studies.
Kaylynn continued to be the bedrock of the family, generally admired by all.
And Benjamin also prospered, eventually fulfilling his lifetime dream by being admitted to the ranks of the Society of Mad Scientists.
Kaylynn's life's ambition is to graduate three children from college. This requires, among other things, having three children.
Soon number three was well on the way.
The twins developed healthy interests in their peers.
After a brief but stressful labor
Kyle Langerak joined the neighborhood.
Kyle's baby years were entirely uneventful (they also seemed very sort; maybe he was born right at 5:59pm or something). His parents, now used to the whole Kid Thing, had time for their own diversions.
In a couple of eyeblinks, it was Kyle's birthday.
(After I installed the Uni Patch, everyone was as usual standing next to whatever they'd previously been doing. Kaylynn had been in the shower, so she was standing there in the altogether.)
So anyway Zachary and Olivia had a busy social life
but you can only go out so many times a day. And it was therefore getting frustratingly hard to keep their aspiration levels up.
Olivia: We've both got the Scholar's Grant and the Quigley.
Benjamin: You're still young, though; most kids don't start for another year or two.
Zachary: We could get a head start. A leg up.
Benjamin: I hear dorm life can be pretty stressful.
Zachary: We could stay in off-campus housing. Hermes says there's room in the house that he's renting with his girlf-- um.
Benjamin: Hermes Zoom? He's living with his girlfriend? That doesn't sound proper.
Kaylynn: We lived together before we were married, Benjamin. It didn't ruin us.
Benjamin: That's different, Kay; we were adults, we were responsible. You already had the magazine, I was in congress. These are just kids.
Zachary: The Zooms are very respectable people, Dad.
Benjamin: Well, that's true enough. What about you, Olivia? Would you be living in the dorms?
Olivia: I might. There are, uh, a few things I'm looking into.
Benjamin: That's good, do your research. What about that Danvers boy across the street? Justin? Didn't he go off to college recently?
Olivia: Oh, yeah, he did. Um...
Benjamin: Maybe he could help you find something. Good for neighbors to stick together, I always say. You went out with him once, didn't you?
Olivia: Um, yeah, once or twice.
Benjamin: Good, good. I suppose if you've learned everything that high school has to offer, college would be sensible. What do you think, Kay?
Kaylynn: I think so if you do, dear.
(Benjamin returns to his newspaper. Kaylynn and Olivia exchange significant smiles.)
Zachary: I'm heading over to Hermes' place. You going to dorm assignments?
Olivia: I've got a few things to do. I'll catch up with you later.
She stopped at the SSU store for some clothes
and then she took a taxi to the address on the paper she was nervously crumpling in her palm.
Justin: Wow, Olivia! I was hoping you'd come out to SSU soon. So good to see you!
Olivia: Hey, thanks, so! I mean, this is the house, is it? The Raptor place?
Justin: Yeah, you like it? People from the neighborhood've been living here for years. My Aunt Joan used to live here, and she swung things so I could take it over when Damion Cormier left.
Olivia: It's perfect. I wish I could live here.
Justin: Well, um, it's, I mean, small. There's only one bedroom.
Olivia (coyly): That'd be okay with me.
Justin: Well, the thing is... the thing is, there's really only one bed.
Olivia (softly): That'd be okay with me, too.
Justin: Oh. You mean? I? Mmmmm...
Olivia: I'm going to love it here.
Justin: Me, too.
Hopefully by the time Benjamin comes to visit, he will have sort of gotten used to the idea...
Meanwhile back at the Langerak place, in what used to be the twins' room: