Charles made it to toddlerhood in the way much like his less ghostlike family members.
And the rest of the clan got busy teaching him and showing him more about life.
Charles’s first word was “food.” Good eating boy.
(Or is that “bowl”? “Spoon”? Help me here!)
There was plenty of help with Charles. Zahra loved him very much, and she was fascinated to see this strange new life form growing every day. But she now had learned the hard way — she was not meant to be a stay at home mom.
Zahra had been climbing the walls so long that you could see her fingernail marks in the plaster. But no matter what she tried, she couldn’t persuade the Science Center to take her back a day sooner. Zahra couldn’t contain her frustration. There was so much science to be done!
She tried to distract herself with her favorite leisure activity.
Or well, that was now her second leisure activity.
Her old friend Fabian Branch called her up a few times to cheer her up.
That was nice, but Fabian was busy at the police station, and he didn’t have a lot of time to drop by.
At last, the interminable maternity leave lifted, and Zahra was off like a shot. With the amount of preparation she’d done at home and her fresh enthusiasm to be back on the job, she got a promotion her very first day back.
That was that. She’d taken the career hit for having a family. Now was time to make science.