My mother wanted me to be a dancer; my father wanted me to be a writer.
They couldn't have both, though; it was far too much money. My father was no businessman with millions of dollars to spend; only a doctor, nor did my mother have the fine breeding nor money that five generations of semi-aristocrats way back to the Pilgrims could promise.
They had what they had saved from my father's work, certainly, but he was not a surgeon, only a cardiologist. They had to make do with what they had.
But my mother was stubborn.
And my father was just as stubborn as my mother.
They thought of having two children for a while, but they were dissuaded from this by the knowledge of the sheer expense of it all. Children had become something precious and expensive; I was very likely going to be their only legacy, and it was far better to have one bright glory than a hundred dull mediocrities.
There are girls who have planned their own lives out by the time they are seven; my mother was such a girl. She knew, I think, before she ever met my father what their wedding would be like, so it is hardly any surprise that she knew what she wanted me to be.
But my father, too, had his ideals. He had wanted a son, with the same unwavering intensity as my mother wanted her daughter ..
Neither one would cave in, so they settled for their daughter being a singer. It was an art, of kinds, that they could both agree on, and as it was, a far more predictable career than that of the writer or the dancer. The dancer modifications were expensive, involving full body work; the writer ones just as bad with their personality alterations. And singers were cheap enough that they could create a really good voice.
I told Reed and Toria this once.
Toria turned away. Reed told me coolly that it explained a great deal.
I remember asking Reed what she meant by that.
And I remember how she shrugged and just laughed at me before she told me gently that it didn't matter at all, because at least I wasn't that cheap and easy.
I've never been quite sure if it was meant as an insult or as a compliment.
I took it as a compliment anyway. Reed was that kind of person.
I used to believe in fairies when I was a kid. You know. Fairies. Like, little creations with wings and gauzy clothes and all that stuff. I mean, I used to believe in all that stuff -- that's how I met the Trikes.