Derek returned home Tueday afternoon having been promoted again.
He was relieved to find his very pregnant wife sleeping,
but he didn’t believe for a second that she had taken it easy all day.
“She’s just not wired that way,” he murmured.
He needed two more friends for his next promotion,
and thought his best chances were Daisy Greaves and Sophie Miguel.
He called both, but neither was home, so he crawled into bed next to his wife for a nap.
When the couple awoke early Tuesday evening,
Derek spent some time on the phone with Daisy and became friends with her, then invited Sophie over.
She was a local teen who liked Biology, and often asked Derek questions about his medical career.
For her part, Yulia asked Christian Love to come in to work,
and re-established her friendship with him.
Since she really didn’t have much to do (having already sold her unwanted items, and knowing full well that Derek would put his foot down if she bought more inventory to sell), she contented herself with playing cards with her customers, hoping to get the home venue to Rank 10 before the baby arrived.
Just after midnight, Derek called her into the kitchen. He had made them pancakes. “Come on—I’ve got to get some food into my girl!” he announced.
They sat down at the small table.
“Honey,” he said, “I don’t want to nag you, but you are very close to delivery and THE BABY AND I need you to get some rest tomorrow.”
He continued. “I worry that, because you are so close to getting this venue to Rank 10, you will keep steaming ahead, jeopardizing your health and the baby’s. Frankly, I’m sorry that I ever said anything unflattering about this house, because I fear it’s given you tunnel vision about moving us out of here.”
“Derek, I feel FINE,” she insisted. “And though this is my first baby, I honestly don’t have the feeling that I’m anywhere CLOSE to delivering.”
The next morning, Derek was getting ready to leave for work, and Yulia was--quite frankly—relieved. ‘I love him with all my heart, of course, but he’s wrapped so tight about this baby,’ she thought. Yulia looked forward to having a quiet day, during which she was just sure she could get her venue to Rank 10, so that she and Derek could move into a bigger place before the baby came.
But it was not to be. Just as Derek was about to leave, Yulia went into labor.
She delivered a lovely little girl,
and the couple decided to name their daughter “Yevgenya.”
“It’s like a Russian version of the Greek name “Eugenia”, Yulia explained to her husband. “It means “well-born”—from “eu” for “good”, and from “genes” for “people” or “family”.
Derek was barely listening to his wife,
instead occupying himself with making goofy faces for the baby.
“Boy, do I wish I didn’t have to go in to work today!” he lamented. “Are you going to be able to handle Yevgenya by yourself?”
“We’ll be fine,” Yulia assured him. “And as ‘some doctor’ I know told me recently, newborns sleep most of the day. Besides, I have Venkat here for help.”
Venkat was the family’s recently hired butler, and Derek wheeled around to face him. “Venkat, I need you to –“ and then launched into a very long list of tasks and obligations he expected the butler to accomplish during the day.
As Derek left for work, Venkat was thinking that Derek’s expectations were a bit extreme. The butler hadn’t particularly cared for this assignment to begin with—he had hoped to be assigned to a much nicer house.
Yulia fed her young daughter,
and put the family’s small dining set into storage and set up a crib in its place,
surrounded by snapdragons, both indoors and out.
She put Yevgenya down for a nap, bought a bunch of flamingos, priced them cheaply, and called her employees into work.
Though it looked chaotic, the operation actually ran reasonably well. Though the rock-bottom prices lured a huge crowd of customers, Troy easily kept up with restocking,
and Shelby easily kept up with the register.
Yulia even got a furnishing discount from her husband’s friend and colleague, Shea.
Before the afternoon was done, the home venue had achieved Rank 10.
When Derek came home, he called to his wife, “Good new!—I got promoted again!”
Yulia responded, “I have BETTER news—WE CAN MOVE!!!”
And she shut down the business, and put nearly everything the family owned into inventory.
NOTES FROM THE AUTHOR:
The family moved out late Wednesday afternoon,
and had $55,529 to spend on their next house.