After Mitch and the twins left, the Love Nest seemed empty. There was the usual stream of lovers (including Remington London for a few days, on his way into the Townie Project), and after a long talk with her daughter Gina, Sally also gave the culinary business a try. She rose through the ranks quickly, with the help of her old friend, former maid and Celebrity Chef Kaylynn Langerak.
Sally was very successful, and before long had her own restaurant. But sometimes in the evenings...
"It does get lonely. But a live-in lover would be jealous, and another child would always be mad at me for cheating on her father. What I need is a fatherless child! Too bad there aren't any of...
"Yeah, I was thinking of, maybe, a teenage girl?"
"Hm, no teenagers, eh? And I don't get to pick the sex? Well..."
She'd feel awfully selfish backing out now.
"Sure, what the heck! Bring me a kid."
At least we'll skip the screaming and the bottles.
The night before the child was to arrive, Sally returned home in quiet triumph; she'd been offered her own cooking show (in the same timeslot that Gina used to have).
She went to sleep that night elated and nervous. What would the morning bring?
The morning brought a van, a social worker, and Phoenix Raptor.
Sally explained that she'd worked her way up from the Birthright Allowance herself, and that seemed to mollify him. But the politics of a ten-year-old orphan would remain mysterious to her for a good long time.
Phoenix immediately understood the value of impressing the headmaster.
The next day Sally was scheduled to go to the studio to set up for the first episode of her program ("Meals from the Love Nest"). As she was settled into bed, she realized that she'd still be out when Phoenix got home from school; she should probably call a Nanny or something. Oh well, tomorrow...
The outfit that the studio had sent was not what Sally'd expected.
"Yeah, this suit isn't going to do it! Can we get something classier?"
"What do you mean 'part of the deal'? I don't think that --"
"Oh, really? Are you sure of that?"
"I see, okay. I'll tell you what; I'll keep the outfit for Hallowe'en, and you can keep the contract and use it for a suppository! Have a nice day."
She was surprised at how good that felt. (They called back later to say it had all been a mistake and she could wear whatever she wanted, but she just laughed; by then she'd realized she didn't really want to be on teevee.)
Once more wealthy and unemployed, Sally had lots of time to enjoy her brash new son.
So that's the mysterious "Phoenix" that I've mentioned in passing recently, happily installed at the Love Nest. He's having a happy childhood, and Sally's enjoying having a little friend around who doesn't get all upset when she entertains her special friends upstairs...