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Seconds, Minutes, Hours. Lifetimes.

Chapter Text

        To start off with, Pidge could honestly say that she didn’t like the planet and had a bad feeling about it. It made her uncomfortable.

        Of course, she hadn’t much liked Olkarion when she’d first arrived. She wasn’t much of an outdoorsy person even still.

        But this place - Cinveon, Pidge berated herself - was another story altogether. The aliens who lived there were an odd bunch. Their normally grey-brown skin would change color depending on how they were feeling.

        But the thing was - they were emotionless husks. Always. The only way they could feel anything was when they ate one of the native fruits that corresponded to a certain feeling, and a few hours later it would fade away.

        It really freaked Pidge out, when she was generally around so many people who had so many emotions they didn’t know what to do with them - i.e. Keith and Lance. Pidge would include Hunk in that category, too, but he was better about it and Pidge wasn’t about to lower the big guy to their level.

        But one of the most peculiar things about the planet was the tree in the palace garden that bore fruit which the natives claimed would allow whomever ate it to see the future.

        Pidge called bullcrap.

        But Allura’s father had had good relations with them in the old days, and they needed them for the coalition. Pidge was really unimpressed with the place.

        The meeting went about just as well as Pidge thought it would; considering the fact she went to sleep within the first five minutes of their leader’s monotone speech, she was surprised Allura and Shiro were able to stay awake the entire time and actually make negotiations.

         At the end of it, Hunk had been give a large basket piled high with all the different fruits before they got back to the castle.

         Hunk was excited about cooking with them and trying them out; he joked about giving Keith something mixed with the fruit to make you happy to Pidge as she followed behind him on the way to the kitchen.

        Pidge furrowed her eyebrows as she pulled herself up onto the counter. She took one of the fruits that was supposed to give you a look into the future.

        Hunk gave Pidge a curious look as he sorted the fruits. “What’s up?” he asked. “Something on your mind? You weren’t really comfortable around them, were you?”

        Pidge kept her eyes on the fruit in her hands. It looked disgusting, actually. A bit like a fully rotten apple or something. Or maybe a tomato.

        It was completely black, and the fur on the skin was reminiscent of something like a peach. There was a black steam surrounded by an even darker set of leaves. It jiggled whenever Pidge moved her hands. If she dropped it, Pidge was sure it would splatter and make a mess everywhere.

        “People should not act like machines,” Pidge finally said, passing the fruit from one hand to the next. “It’s… wrong. There’s a difference. I like that difference.”

        Hunk gave Pidge a gentle smile. “I felt pretty uncomfortable around them too,” he said, shivering a bit. “Even when they ate the fruit, they all expressed emotions the same way. People being different from each other is what makes things interesting.”

        Pidge grinned, finally looking up from the fruit to Hunk. “Like how Lance totally freaks out in those scary movies when something just jumps out-”

        “But Keith just kind of falls over onto whoever’s nearest,” Hunk finished. The two of them laughed.

        “Allura is really terrifying when she’s angry,” Pidge noted. “She’s either yelling or completely quiet while staring you down.”

        “You’re cute when you’re angry,” Hunk supplied, making Pidge splutter.

        “I- I’m not cute!” she shrieked.

        Hunk chuckled and pointed at her. “You get all red on your face and the tip of your ears and your eyebrows just get really wide. And you’re just so tiny; it’s cute.”

        Pidge glared. “I hate you,” she claimed. “I really hate you sometimes.”

        Hunk just shrugged, though he tried forcing down his smile. Pidge looked down to the fruit in her hands before holding it by the stem for Hunk to see. A vibrant blue juice seeped out from the strain.

        “You think this actually works?” she asked, her head tilted and legs kicking back and forth.

        Hunk shrugged again while he put the fruits from the basket in the refrigerating device. “Why not?” he said. “We’ve seen plenty of crazy things while out in space.”

        “But that’s all sciency stuff. This is basically fantasy.”

        “Isn’t possibility science?”

        Pidge’s eyes widened and she looked down at the fruit, running a finger over the fuzzy surface. “If it takes the memory of events of that have happened and applies them to possible events that could happen in the future do to a pattern in life you repeat, it may be possible that you can see the future from this thing,” she mused.

        “Like the other fruits activate the chemicals in your brain to produce the different emotions,” Hunk supplied.

        Pidge nodded. “Kind of. But it’s got to be a lot more complicated than that.” She studied the fruit before bringing it up to her lips. She took a large bite out of it.

        It was sweet. The overly sweet of ripe fruit. Disgustingly sweet. The kind of bite you want to immediately spit out because your body knows that it’s a rotten fruit. But it was sticky, like cotton candy, and stuck to Pidge’s teeth.

        She forced herself to swallow the bite down as she wiped away the almost neon colored juice from her jaw and chin. Hunk handed her a damp cloth to get it all away.

        Pidge hesitated for a moment before closing her eyes and letting her arms fall and head loll back as if she’d entered a trance. After a moment, Hunk poked her arm.

        “Hey, hey, Pidge- did you see something?” he asked hesitantly.

        “Yeah,” she said dreamily.

        Hunk’s expression brightened. “What?”

        Pidge opened her eyes and gave Hunk a glare. “That I was right all along and this was just a load of bull,” Pidge claimed, jumping off the counter. She tossed the fruit into the trashcan and it splattered against the bottom just like she thought it would. “And it was disgusting.”

        She turned around and leaned on the opposite counter.

        “So, when’s lunch so I can wash that taste out of my mouth?”

        Pidge climbed into bed that evening, her mind a whirl of thoughts.

        It happened sometimes. The future fruit, the talk with Hunk, various events that had happened throughout the day.

        Allura had insisted on playing dress up with Pidge. Pidge had tried hard to refuse, claiming she had work to do and that she hadn’t worn a dress since she went by Katie but Allura was insistent. It had turned out… fun.

        Then Keith had come in and offered to help Pidge. She was a good fighter, sure, but she also wasn’t the strongest. Or entirely the most skilled. But they’d trained for a while and, though Pidge was sore, she could feel confident that she knew how to better handle the hand to hand combat.

        Then after dinner, which Pidge had accidentally skipped due to working on her lion because she missed time doing so when with Allura and Keith, Lance had brought her some food and hadn’t moved until she’d eaten. Even after she’d finished, Lance had stayed for a while and allowed Pidge to use him as a sound board. He wasn’t as smart as Pidge or Hunk, no one could as smart as those two, but he wasn’t an idiot. Unlike how he acted. He gave some okay input.

        Shiro had come into the hanger hours later and forced the two of them to stop their work and go to bed, which was how Pidge had ended up in her current situation.

        The fruit, Pidge rationalized, was a hoax. She hadn’t felt any different all day. Nothing abnormal had happened to her.

        So she had no problem turning onto her stomach and pulling her pillow closer to her, falling asleep a few minutes later once her mind had calmed down.

        She almost immediately regretted it when, the next morning, she didn’t recognize her surroundings.

Chapter Text

        Waking up was one of the strangest feelings Pidge had had in a looooong time.

        For one thing, she was in a hospital. On Earth. How could she tell? The machinery was old, compared to everything on the castle and what Pidge had become accustomed to in the few months she’d spent up in space.

        The other indicator was she could remember the paint style on the bottom rim of the room. It was the same in every room of the hospital, and it was the hospital that they’d taken Matt to when he’d broken his arm when he was twelve.

        Pidge’s eyes were heavy as she turned her head to the side. There didn’t seem to be anyone else in the room, but her heart monitor beeped regularly.

        Pidge’s fingers twitched; her whole body ached. What had happened?

        The door opened silently and Pidge turned to look at who it was. A young woman with wavy brunette hair bounced in. She brightened when she saw that Pidge’s eyes were open.

        “Oh, you’re awake!” she exclaimed, coming over slowly. She began taking notes on her clipboard about what the monitors were telling her. “How are you feeling?”

        Pidge opened her mouth, but nothing came out. She tried again after swallowing. “Like hell,” she croaked out.

        The woman, a nurse from the looks of her, smiled kindly at Pidge. “Well, you’ve been out for the past few days, and you did have to go into intensive surgery,” she claimed. “It’s to be expected.”

        Pidge scrunched her eyebrows. “What- What happened?” she questioned, her voice creaking like a door with a rusty hinge.

        “There was a crash,” the woman explained, her face softening. “Luckily, no one else was hurt too badly. Though, not so lucky for you it seems, I’m sure.”

        Pidge wanted to roll her eyes or shake her head or something, but her body felt like lead and she just wanted to go back to sleep.

        The nurse patted Pidge’s arm. “I’ll be right back,” she promised, going over to the phone by the door. Pidge watched as she picked up the receiver and began speaking into it. “Yes, Dr. Ro? She’s awake.” There was a moment of silence. “Yes, I planned on calling her husband-”

        Pidge spluttered. “Husband?!” she shrieked. “I can’t- I’m not- I’m fifteen! I can’t be married!”

        The nurse froze at Pidge’s exclamation. “Um, just a moment, Dr. Ro.” She pressed the receiver to her chest and turned to Pidge. “Come again? How- How old did you just say you were?”

        “Fifteen,” Pidge claimed bitterly.

        With a hurried nod, the nurse turned back towards the door and muttered into the phone unintelligibly.

        Pidge gave a huff and turned away.

        The nurse came back over to the bed to retrieve her clipboard, seeming a bit nervous. “Dr. Ro will be in in a moment,” she said. “She’ll explain, um, everything.”

        With that, the nurse fled from the room.

        Pidge was left alone with nothing but the sound of the beeping monitor and the tapping of her fingers on the plastic of the hospital bed and the awkward air blowing through her nose from the oxygen tube.

        A few moments later, the door opened again to the woman Pidge assumed to be Dr. Ro. She was an aging woman, but far from old. Her black hair was tied up in a bun and glasses her perched on her nose. Age lines followed up from her cheeks to her ears and more joined from her eyes.

        “Rosetta tells me it seems that you’ve lost your memory,” she claimed, taking a seat by Pidge. She tilted her head and gave a patient smile. “Rosetta can be a bit… quick to judge. She still has a lot to learn.” Dr. Ro hummed while looking at her paperwork. “Now, it wouldn’t be unnatural for you to have a hard time remembering things and be a bit forgetful for the next few days. You have some trauma to your brain- all taken care of and nothing to worry about, of course. But it might have caused some trouble.”

        Pidge nodded slowly, as if in understanding.

        She didn’t understand a thing.

        “I’m just going to ask you a few questions to test your memory, alright?” With Pidge’s nod, Dr. Ro continued. “Then let’s begin.”

        What happened?

        For the next half hour or so, Dr. Ro asked Pidge questions, things like how old she was or what the last thing she remembered was and similar. Nothing Dr. Ro asked divulged anything that Pidge might have gotten to put pieces of her life together.

        The only thing she knew was that she was… married.

        It was an odd concept to think about.

        Did I really lose so many years of my life?

        Dr. Ro finally set her pen down and looked up at Pidge. “It seems your husband is here,” she claimed after looking at her beeper. “Would you like to see him?”

        Pidge hesitated. But then she nodded. She’d gotten feeling back in her hands and arms, and could sit up a little bit on her own. She still needed pillows to support her or she’d have ended up falling painfully.

        Dr. Ro nodded and stood. “I’ll send him in,” she said as she stood. “And I’ll have Rosetta in to check on you in about an hour.” Her eyes twinkled and she gave a smile. “Don’t let her intimidate you, dear.”

        Pidge snorted. As if something like that would happen.

        Dr. Ro left and Pidge was left to herself for a few moments. She chewed on her chapped lips. Who could her husband be? Was it someone she knew? Or were they a total stranger to her?

        Anxiously, Pidge waited for her “husband” to arrive.

        The handle or the door creaked and Pidge’s breath caught in her throat. When it finally opened, it revealed a harried looking Lance.

        Lance .

        He was obviously years older, with sharper features and a bit darker skin that could only come from long days spent in the sun. His hair was longer than Pidge remembered it, too. Not that it was bad.

        But Lance, really?

        Lance gave Pidge a soft kind of smile. One full of some sort of relief and exhaustion among other things.

        “Hey gremlin.”

        “Oh my god, you’ve got a beard.”

        Lance snorted and laughed as he shut the door and made his way over to Pidge’s side. He grabbed her hand it and just felt so natural that Pidge didn’t protest.

        Lance gave her an amused look. “The doctors tell me you don’t remember the last twelve years of your life, and the first thing you say to me is that I’ve got a beard?” He laughed and rubbed his chin thoughtfully. “Besides, it’s not even a beard. It’s stubble. I haven’t been able to shave for a few days.”

        Pidge rolled her eyes. “Still care waaaay too much about your looks, I see,” she stated.

        Lance poked her cheek goodnaturedly. “But you started doing my daily skincare routine with me about eight years ago, Katie McClain,” he commented.

        Both of them froze. Lance’s eyes widened and he pulled his hands away from Pidge and stumbled over himself trying to apologize. Pidge wasn’t even paying attention.

        “Katie… McClain.” The name sounded foreign on her tongue. It wasn’t… terrible. Awkward, sure, because she wasn’t used to it. The person she was before the crash probably was, but Pidge sure wasn’t.

        She barely even knew who Katie Holt was anymore- well, last she knew, probably. Maybe this other, older version of herself that she didn’t remember knew who Katie Holt was.

        Pidge flinched and gripped at her head, feeling a headache coming on. Her brain wasn’t working like it was supposed to and she didn’t like it.

        Lance placed a hand on Pidge’s shoulder, making her jump in surprise and turn to him. “Do you need me to call the doctor?” he asked, the concern laced in his voice evident.

        Pidge shook her head, putting both hands back in her lap.

        “Um, no, no, I’m fine,” she claimed. “Just- freaked out, I guess? I remember being up with Voltron and trying to form the coalition and now I’m here and I’m married and I don’t remember any of it and I don’t know how much more I can take.”

        Lance began shuffling on his feet, giving off a nervous chuckle. Pidge sent him a look.

        “What is it you’re not telling me?” she demanded.

        Lance scratched at his cheek. “Um, well,” he stuttered out, “I- I don’t want to- I don’t want to overwhelm you, Pidge.”

        Pidge sighed, leaning her head back on the pillows. “I’m already overwhelmed. I am married to you of all people-”


        “-I doubt there’s much you could say that would do much to me.”

        Lance hesitated for a few moments, being quieter than he had ever been to Pidge’s memory. Pidge was almost ready to sit up and shake him to get answers.

        “We have kids,” he finally said. “Two of them. Mattie and Nico.”

        And that may have slightly made Pidge freak out a little.

        With no further signs of physical injury and no more numbness or much weakness in her body, and promises of Pidge’s memories returning soon as long as she took it easy and didn’t pressure herself, Pidge was released by the end of the day.

        Pidge fidgeted nervously in her seat, hands playing with the hem of her shirt. Lance looked out of her from the corner of his eye from his place behind the wheel.

        “You… wanna hold my hand?” he offered, his voice soft. “It, um, it’s always helped, you know? When you get nervous.”

        Lance offered his closest hand and Pidge eyed it. She turned her face to the window to watch the city pass by and forced herself to still.

        “Um, no thanks.”

        Lance’s hand clenched a bit as he let out a barely audible sigh before returning the hand to the steering wheel. Pidge felt something in her stomach drop.

        She couldn’t remember anything, but she’s apparently been married to Lance for seven years now. Lance was still in love with her even if she couldn’t remember it, even if she wasn’t in love with him.

        Pidge bit her tongue before she said something stupid like “Actually, yeah, I’d like to hold your hand” . Because that meant something different to Lance than it did to Pidge; the last time Pidge remembered holding Lance’s hand, which wasn’t really an uncommon thing for them, it’d been platonicly.

        “Lance, how- how did we fall in love?” Pidge asked.

        Lance gave Pidge a sidelong glance before a grin pulled up onto his face. “It was after the war,” he claimed. “Lotor joined us. Helped us reform the Galra Empire. He’s visited a couple times over the years, but he’s kinda busy being emperor and all. He’s a pretty good friend these days.” Lance cleared his throat while Pidge turned to look at him in disbelief. Lotor? Really? Lance chuckled at Pidge’s reaction. “You had the same reaction when he tried convincing us to work together.” He smiled at the fond memory. “Everyone seemed to have a job to do. Allura, Coran, and Shiro were working close with Lotor to unite the Galra Empire. Keith and Hunk were usually away making peace treaties with the other planets, that or Keith was with the Mamora. You usually found yourself in with the robots and machines and ships. I was the only one without a real job to do.”

        Lance shrugged as if it didn’t bother him, but Pidge knew him better than that. They’d been teammate for a long while before going off into space together.

        Even if it didn’t bother him anymore, it sure must have bothered him then.

        Lance grinned as he turned down a street. “With everyone else going places I couldn’t exactly followed, I ended up following you around quite a bit,” he explained. “I remember there was a couple of times we messed with a couple of their robots and got into so much trouble with them.” Lance laughed at the memory. “We were running from Galra security who’d finally got tired of our shenanigans when we ended up in a closet.” His expression turned nostalgic. “That was the first time I kissed you, was in there. Not the most romantic of settings, but it seemed right at the time.” Lance raised a suggestive eyebrow in Pidge’s direction. “You sure weren’t complaining.”

        Pidge snorted and swatted the back of Lance’s head, telling him to keep his eyes on the road.

        There was silence for another moment or two.

        “Hey, Lance?”


        “Did we… ever find my dad?”

        Lance smiled contently, nodding. “Yeah,” he said. “We did. “We can invite them over this weekend if you want? Matt too, if you’d like.”

        Pidge hummed. “Yeah. I- I would.”

        “Home” was different than what Pidge had expected.

        So she didn’t even know what she was expecting, exactly, but it wasn’t this .

        It was fairly large, three stories. The outside had nicely cut vines (Lance joked about having to probably having them removed if either of their sons turned out like him in their teenage years) winding up the walls and columns. There was a wrap around porch around basically the entire house, most of it surrounded by a light wooden criss cross fence.

        The backyard had a large garden that Lance took care of. It was full of flowers and different fruits and vegetables, a tall almost fence like structure similar to what surrounded the porch had vines of berries and tomatoes weaving through it.

        Once Lance brought Pidge into the house, thundering footsteps came from the next room over.

        “Mama!” Two young boys, Nico and Mattie (four and six respectively), threw themselves at Pidge. Pidge turned to Lance, wide eyed in horror, as the boys clung to her tightly.

        Lance gently pulled the boys away from Pidge and picked Nico up in his arms. He knelt in front of Mattie so they all were level.

        Hunk came out of the room they boys had run from, looking a bit sheepish. He gave Pidge a small wave.

        Lance ruffled Mattie’s hair. He looked most like Pidge, with her same small nose and thin lips and freckled cheeks, but with Lance’s dark hair. Nico was almost an exact replica of Lance, except he was a bit more rounded like Pidge.

        “Remember what I told you about Mama, hijos?” Lance asked. Mattie tilted his head to the side while Nico furrowed his eyebrows in a very Pidge like way.

        “Uuuuuummmm, Mama hurt her head when she was in the crash with Nico and now is having a hard time remembering stuff?” Mattie said. Lance nodded.

        “That’s right, hijo, and she also had to go get all fixed up, so you gotta be careful with Mama for the next few days so she doesn’t have to go back to the doctor’s.” Lance looked pointedly at Nico, who’d practically launched himself at Pidge when he’d first seen her.

        Nico hid his face in Lance’s shoulder to avoid looking in his father’s eyes directly.

        Lance laughed and put the boy down, sending them off to play. Then he turned to Hunk. “Thanks for watching the kids, man,” Lance said, clapping Hunk on the shoulder. “I owe you.”

        Hunk grinned at Lance, then at Pidge. “It’s my pleasure,” he told them. “I’d better get going. I hope you feel better soon, Katie.”

        “Yeah. Thanks, Hunk.” Pidge watched as Hunk left, hugging her arms. She looked over to Lance as soon as the door closed. “Katie?”

        Lance shrugged and rubbed the back of his neck. “Matt and I are basically the only ones who calls you Pidge anymore,” he explained. “You… stopped liking it after we got back. Went by Katie for a long while because Pidge brought back too many memories of the war. You told me and Matt that we could call you it again shortly after Mattie was born.”

        Pidge nodded slowly. After a couple beats of awkward silence, Lance offered to show her to their room so she could change into something else.

        In order to give her some space, Lance immediately left the room to go make dinner. Pidge sank down on the bed and ended up not changing or even nosing around.

        The bed was soft, and so were the blankets. Pidge absentmindedly ran a hand over the comforter as she looked around the room. It was an almost perfect mixture of Pidge and Lance.

        Things that were quite obviously Pidge’s were strewn about, though there were things haphazardly put away in some places in an effort to keep it semi-clean. The desk with all the beauty products and some of the most embarrassing pictures of Pidge was obviously Lance’s.

        There was almost an entire wall dedicated to pictures of their family, many of them having Mattie or Nico or both in the frames.

        A small bump sound caused Pidge to look over at the open doorway. Nico was hiding behind the doorframe, a single eye and unruly hair peeking out from behind it. When Pidge didn’t immediately recoil at the sight of him or tell him to go away, he ventured closer.

        Once by Pidge’s side, he held his arms up for a moment before Pidge awkwardly picked the boy up and sat him on her knee. Nico scooted closer until he reached up and grabbed Pidge’s cheeks.

        He pulled her down until he could press his lips to Pidge’s forehead and kissed it with an audible smack. He giggled as he pulled away and Pidge looked at him, wide eyed.

        “What was that for?” she asked.

        Nico lightly kicked his legs back and forth. “You always kiss my owies better,” he said, looking up at her. “Did you really fo’get all ‘bout me, Mama?”

        Pidge’s heart broke just a little and she pulled Nico in for a tight hug, nestling her face in his hair. “I can’t believe I forgot a sweet little thing like you,” she muttered.

        They stayed like that, in each other’s arms, until Nico pulled Pidge to his and Mattie’s playroom to “teach her how to play properly again”. Mattie was in there too, so they all got into a game with some of the boys’ figurines.

        Some time later, Lance knocked on the door as he entered to see Pidge under both boys as they relentlessly tickled her. Lance smiled at them.

        “Dinners done, everyone,” he proclaimed. The boys cheered, immediately running past Lance in a whirlwind.

        Lance laughed as he helped Pidge to her feet. Pidge brushed her shirt off.

        “Those boys are something, aren’t they?” she noted, lightly folding her arms.

        Lance nodded in agreement. “They are. And Mattie’s turning out to be as much of a gremlin as his mother.”

        Pidge reached over and pinched Lance’s arm and twisted, making Lance yelp as Pidge gave a satisfied smirk.

        “Hey, I made you food!” Lance wailed.

        “That has nothing to do with this.”

        “This has everything to do with it-!”

        Dinner had been… fun. Mattie couldn’t stop talking, even with his mouth full. Nico was almost quiet throughout the entire meal, though he worked through two plates and picked off of Mattie’s when Mattie wasn’t looking.

        Lance had joked the entire meal, making conversation and reminiscing about things that had been years ago but to Pidge were just like yesterday. She reminded him of things that he’d have rathered forget to spare himself the embarrassment.

        But then came the time for sharing a bed.

        Lance kept claiming he’d take the couch, or one of the guest rooms, but Pidge wouldn’t budge.

        “I’m not going to kick you out of your- our- the bed,” she claimed impatiently, already in a worn out sports shirt and baggy sweatpants. She put her hands on her hips. “If you’re so insistent on me taking it, we can just share.”

        Lance ran a hand down his face. “Pidge, Katie, you currently don’t remember anything for the past twelve years,” he stated. “Your brain is making you believe you’re fifteen, while I am a twenty-nine year old man. As far as your memories are concerned, we aren’t even dating.”

        Pidge let out a groan of frustration. “My brain is kinda messed up right now, yeah,” she stated, “but I’m technically twenty-seven. Therefore- no problem.” Pidge took a calming breath so she didn't start getting heated right before bed. The doctors had told her to take it easy, and making her brain a mess right before one of its most active times would do nothing to help her. “We’ll just- sleep on opposites of the bed. No- No cuddling. No hugging. No touching.”

        Lance whined. “You sound like you did when we first started living together,” he complained. But he shook his head, knowing that Pidge wouldn’t be giving in and it would be easier to just go along with her wishes. “Alright, alright, let’s just get to bed already.”

        Pidge nodded triumphantly. She pulled the blankets on her side of the bed down and turned the bedside lamp off before climbing under the sheets. Lance followed soon after, though not as quickly.

        It was dark in the room, the only sounds being Lance’s breathing turned into soft snores and the thrum of a couple cars passing by outside. Pidge closed her eyes and tried to force herself to sleep, but kept tossing and turning.

        Even though she couldn’t truly remember, the bed felt oddly cold that night.

Chapter Text

        When Pidge’s mind blurrily pulled her from sleep, the first thing she registered was the strong arms wrapped around her body.

        And it immediately ticked her off.

        Freakin’ Lance doesn’t listen when you tell him something-

        There was a hum of content behind Pidge, and Pidge could immediately tell that is was not Lance whose arms she was in.

        Pidge blinked open her eyes.

        The room wasn’t the one she went to bed in. In fact, she’d never seen the room in her life. Soft, cream colored walls with a light yellow trim and small shapes that Pidge couldn’t make out that almost blended completely into the wallpaper.

        The next little thing that Pidge noticed, when she attempted to roll over, that not only was she hindered by the large arms surrounding her but also by her bulging stomach.

        Pidge could feel movement and her hand went to touch her stomach in awe. But then her stomach dropped with realization.

        What the- I’m pregnant?! With whose kid?!

        Pidge finally managed to roll over, with extreme difficulty, to find a sleeping Hunk by her side. Pidge blinked at him.

        He looked so peaceful and content, just holding Pidge in his arms. Which were covered in various different tattoos. His hair wasn’t pulled back in his sleep, but, like Lance, it was longer than Pidge remembered it.

        Pidge had to resist the urge to reach out and run her hand through it because goddamnit, it looked too soft and tempting!

        Any and all thoughts on the matter were halted as Hunk slowly blinked open his eyes. He smiled so sweetly at Pidge and she froze.

        Her mind went blank as he leaned over and gently pressed his lips to hers, unawares of her inner turmoil.

        “Good morning,” he murmured sleepily.

        The door to the bedroom burst open what seemed like a million moving children pour into the room. And all of them jumped onto the bed, seemingly at once.

        “Daddy, Daddy!” The call came from two little children, Pidge couldn’t outright tell if they were boy or girl, but both were in much of Pidge’s likeness.

        Hunk huffed as they jumped on his back before rolling around carefully so as to not throw them off the bed. “Ciera, Chloe, good morning girls,” he said, picking them up as he got out of the bed.

        There were three other children on the bed. One was a cute little girl, though she was stockier than the rest, with Hunk’s coloring. Both boys were a bit larger, and had Hunk’s dark hair, though one had Pidge’s lighter skin.

        The three of them bounced over to Pidge and wrapped their tiny arms around her.

        “Mommy, when’s breakfast?” the little girl asked.

        “‘M hung’y,” the lighter boy whined.

        The boy with darker skin kissed Pidge’s stomach. “Morning, babies!” he exclaimed.

        Babies?! There’s more than one in there?!

        Pidge felt almost faint at the thought. But considering that - Ciera and Chloe, was it?- looked like twins, and there others were too closely similar to each other to be nothing but triplets, Pidge could understand it.

        Sort of.

        Hunk pulled the children off of Pidge. “Careful there, Theo,” he said to the darker one. “Jace, Opal, come on, let’s go get breakfast and let Mommy rest for a little bit more.”

        Pidge frowned as the crowd of small children trailed after Hunk. She pulled herself out of the bed, which was a struggle in and of itself, and waddled over to the window. A phone was set on a charger by it and, with the green scream to it, Pidge assumed it was hers.

        She turned the phone on and swiped it open, hoping to find anything that might help her understand what was going on.

        There was a couple pictures she found, one with the caption “Ciera and Chloe’s Fifth Birthday! :)” that seemed to be recent, and then another in a folder that seemed to only be from the week before that said “Theo, Jace, and Opal just turned three!”

        Pidge placed a hand on her stomach. There hadn’t been anything to gauge how far along she was, or told her how many she was carrying. She’d probably have further snooping she’d have to do to find any of those out.

        But for now- she was starving and the smell of Hunk’s cooking called to her on a spiritual level.

        Pidge waddled down the stairs, feeling unbalanced and unused to the extra weight and having to hold onto the railing tightly to make sure she didn’t fall.

        Pidge followed her nose and finally found her way to the dining room, Hunk carefully laying out the breakfast plates as she walked in.

        “Hmmm. This smells good,” Pidge said with a content sigh, going over to the table. Hunk seemed to gawk at Pidge.

        “Pidge, the doctor said you’re supposed to rest,” he told her, setting the plate down with a little more force than necessary, almost as though he was exasperated with her.

        Pidge frowned as she pulled out a chair. She intended to plop down, but ended up going down slowly, holding out her arms in a See? Look at me! way. “I’m not made of glass,” she claimed. Then she gave off the smallest of smirks as she leaned on her elbows on the table. “Besides, it’s your fault; you make food that smells too good.”

        At Pidge’s comment, Hunk gave a soft smile, the worry that had been hidden behind his eyes melting away. He set a plate with an omelet and bacon in front of Pidge, then a cup of coffee with a bitter, yet simultaneously sweet, fragrance.

        Pidge’s foot bounced and she fidgeted with her fork between bites, eyeing her… children. First Lance and now Hunk? And kids with both? It was odd. It made Pidge’s brain hurt. Was she in a dream? Or was Lance the dream? Had she been in an accident and was dreaming about both due to a coma?

        Her eyes flickered to Hunk cleaning Opal’s face across the table before looking back to her half eaten plate. Her stomach still felt fairly empty, but her appetite was nonexistent. Her knuckles almost turned white from the force she gripped her fork while lost in her thoughts.

        A light kick to her foot brought Pidge back to reality. She looked up to Hunk giving her a worried look.

        “You okay?” he asked softly. The children finished their food quickly before getting down from the table and running off into the living room. Theo toddled after the others, a bit slower than the rest.

        Pidge opened her mouth, then closed it. She didn’t particularly want to ruin- well, any tranquility that was going on. She also didn’t want to worry Hunk anymore than he already was. Which was obvious was quite a bit.

        “Just preoccupied,” she mumbled, stuffing a piece of bacon into her mouth. Usually bacon made her mouth water, but at the moment, it felt nothing but dry.

        Best not bring up the Lance/Hunk-could-be-a-dream conflict thingy.

        Yeah, no .

        Hunk gave a kinda miserable chuckle. “Yeah, being seven months pregnant with four babies can do that,” he claimed. Pidge’s hand twitched at the number. Four. Seriously?! Hunk continued. “But you’re the one that was being stubborn about keeping them all, even at the risk to yourself.”

        Pidge froze at the bitterness in his voice.

        She laid a hand on her stomach, looking down at it. There were four little ones in there. Quadruplets. Pidge could remember reading a bit about multiple births when she was younger and bored because her homework had been too easy.

        The more kids you had in you, the more danger the pregnancy posed. For the mother and children. Back in the old days, when medical treatments were, well, less than satisfactory, the mother had the probability of not making it and the children- well, not all of them were lucky.

        But even the last Pidge remembered, there’d been so many advancements and if time had passed since there, there was surely even more. She had good chances. Hell, she was only carrying four and a while back, there’d been that woman was had eight. Octomom, as she’d been called. She’d even gotten on Oprah.

        Pidge was only carrying half of that.

        She pressed her hand a bit more firmly into her stomach and gripped a bit of fabric, feeling the movement of one of the babies.

        “I’ll stick by my choices,” Pidge said. She finally looked back up to Hunk as he cleaned up the childrens’ plates. “I made the choice to keep them all. They each deserve an equal chance, and I’m there mother. I’m supposed to give that to them. Do you not want them or something?”

        Hunk hesitated before turning around. He let out a soft sigh, and his voice was so quiet Pidge could hardly hear it. “Of course I want them,” he whispered. He turned around to face Pidge. “But I also want you . You’re at risk because you’re smaller than the average, and with so two other multiple births before this one-”

        “I’m just more prepared,” Pidge interrupted, her set in determination. “I’m not weak , Hunk-”

        “I’m not saying you are-”

        “-so I’m not just gonna die .” Pidge eased herself to her feet and Hunk rushed to help her. She allowed him. As soon as she was on her feet, Pidge sighed. “I fought an intergalactic war and survived, didn’t I?” she questioned. “Parenthood isn’t gonna kill me.”

        Hunk picked up her empty plate and added it to the stack as he let out his own sigh. “It’s the road to getting there that worries me,” he admitted. He gave her an almost sad sort of look. “I’m just- I’m scared, okay?”

        Pidge gave Hunk a a look. “But there’s no need to be,” she stated. Then the look turned to a brilliant grin. “And when I get out of this perfectly fine, I get to tell you I told you so.” He held her pinky out. “I promise.”

        Hunk rolled his eyes, wrapping his pinky around Pidge’s. “You better keep that promise,” he told her. He then left to go do the morning dishes.

        Pidge left the dining room, wandering the halls of the house until she found the living room. She sat down on the dark brown couch, taking the nearly weightless aqua colored blanket from the back of it and draping it over her feet.

        They were soooo sore and Pidge didn’t like it. But she wasn’t going to complain, because complaining would have made Hunk worry more and Pidge didn’t really want him to worry any more than he already was.

        She opened up her phone, flipping through random things. Hunk came in a bit later and sat with Pidge on the couch. Pidge tossed him a corner of the blanket and he turned on the TV to some random show that Pidge wasn’t too interested in.

        After a while, the kids came in and Jace demanded that Pidge read him a book. He curled into one side of Pidge, between her and the arm of the couch, while one of the twins, the one wearing a purple shirt with a shooting star on it, snuggled in between Pidge and Hunk, forcing them apart. It could have been Chloe, but Pidge wasn’t sure.

        Pidge gave an odd look to Hunk at Jace’s book option, it being a book that would probably be meant for someone even older than the twins. Hunk just shrugged, so Pidge opened the book to the first page and began reading.

        Both Jace and Chloe seemed enamored with the book, and stuck around until chapter three. It seemed like a vaguely familiar story, something Pidge might have read long ago. It was horribly wrong, of course. Space wasn’t like that, but it was a nice thought.

        Sometime during the reading, Ciera had dragged Hunk off to color with her. Theo came in chasing Opal while dressed as a dragon and Opal in a princess dress, but carrying a foam sword.

        Theo growled at Opal in what was supposed to be a dragon like voice and she jumped up on the couch to stand taller than him, brandishing her sword awkwardly. The hilt of the sword smacked Chloe in the back of the head. She let out an indigent shriek and began chasing the laughing toddlers around the room.

        Jace patted Pidge’s tummy before jumping off the couch and trailing after them. Ciena just blew a piece of hair out of her face and went back to her coloring.

        Pidge snorted and curled as into herself as she could. After a bit, Hunk went and made lunch. By that time, Pidge was in a much better mood.

        After lunch, Cienna and Chloe dashed upstairs, Hunk trailing slowly after to put the triplets down for a nap. When they came back downstairs, Pidge once again back in the living room, Cienna and Chloe were wearing leotards and tights and small gym bags over their shoulders.

        Chloe did a spin on her toes. “I’ma be the best rocket scientist-ballerina and fly the Green Lion like Mommy!” she exclaimed.

        Cienna shook her head and crossed her arms. “You can’t do all that,” she claimed.

        Chloe stuck her tongue out like a petulant child. “Of course I can,” she stated. She bounced over to Pidge, putting her hands on Pidge’s knee and bouncing in place. “Can’t I, Mommy? Huh? Can’t I, can’t I?”

        Pidge’s mind went blank, sneaking glances at Hunk. He wasn’t looking at her, putting his shoes on by the door. Pidge cleared her throat, awkwardly  sticking her hand out and patting the child’s head.

        “Um, you can be anything you want to be?” Pidge was uncertain with the answer, sure the child wouldn’t be happy with it. But Chloe seemed satisfied, turning and giving her sister a raspberry paired with an I told you so .

        Hunk stood and went over to Pidge, leaning down and kissing her forehead. “Hana should be here in about half an hour,” he claimed. “So before the others wake up. Camilla said she’d drop the girls off from ballet after the class is over, and I should be back around six.”

        Pidge rolled her eyes. “You worry to much,” she whined. “I’m fine.”

        Hunk gave her a look. “You’re pregnant with quadruplets, and I’m a worrywort,” he stated. He gave a small smile, putting a hand on Pidge’s shoulder. “Let me worry about you a little.”

        Pidge waved him off with an eyeroll, a small grin on her face. “I’ll be fine, but you do you,” she said. Hunk kissed her head again.

        “Thank you,” he murmured against her hair.

        A few moments later, Pidge was left mostly alone. It was more quiet than she’d had all day, so she put on music to fill it.

        The songs on the radio were complete trash, so she ended up looking up music her parents used to listen to on her phone.

        Hana arrived with an excited “Hi Mrs. Garrett!”

        Hana, it seemed, was the excitable teenager that had been hired to help around the house and take care of the children while Hunk was at work after the first couple months of Pidge’s pregnancy.

        She always seemed to be everywhere at once, and refused Pidge’s help. Though she seemed like the kind of person who couldn’t do any sort of housework, she had a system down and was good at it.

        The kids loved her, and she was good with them. It almost made Pidge a little bit jealous, until she remembered that Hana was only there for a few hours every few days a week. Pidge spent most of the time with them- and she didn’t even know what was going on anyway, if she was dreaming or anything of the sort.

        After cleaning up around the house and getting the triplets a snack after they woke up, Hana joined Pidge in the living room with some hot chocolate for both and they talked.

        Hana also seemed to train under Lance as the next Blue Paladin on the days she didn't work at Pidge’s house, and that was how they’d met. After graduating from high school, she was going to go to the Galaxy Garrison to train more there, but she’d be flying the Blue Lion once Lance fully retired from his duties (because it seemed that after everything, Allura had given Blue back to Lance in her decision to remain in space, and Blue had accepted the change of pilot).

        Around three, Cienna and Chloe burst in through the front door, a giggling mess. They immediately ran to Pidge and fought for her attention, talking over one another, in telling her about everything that had happened in class that day.

        Pidge listened as best she could, but could barely make out anything they said.

        Hana managed to get them to change out of their leotards, and, like promised, Hunk arrived back home at 6:05 on the dot.

        He insisted Hana stayed for dinner, and because it was Hunk’s cooking after all, she couldn’t really say no. So after a while, all of them were sitting down to dinner and chatting happily.

        Cienna and Chloe were the first to jump into the bath that night, insisting they didn’t need Hunk of Pidge or Hana’s help, that they were big girls now and could do it by themselves. They all kept an ear out in case any problems arose.

        The triplets tried to use the same argument, but that didn’t go over well. Then they tried everything, including hiding under Hunk and Pidge’s bed, to get out of taking a bath all together. When Hunk finally managed to get the three of them in the tub, Pidge watching with amusement from the doorway, they splashed around and played so much, no one was quite sure that they really got any cleaner.

        After everyone was finally dried off and put to bed and fast asleep, Pidge slumped against Hunk on the bed. She groaned and Hunk began petting her hair while he gave a soft chuckle.

        “I huuuuuuurt,” she whined pathetically. “I feel like I’m weighed down by lead and I feel like I have rice bags for feet.”

        “Rice bags?” Hunk questioned, amusement tainting his lips.

        Pidge frowned. “Maybe flour bags,” she grumbled. “Heavy and bloated.”

        Hunk laughed as he easily picked Pidge up like she weighed nothing. He pulled the blankets back and set Pidge on the bed before pulling them back over her.

        “I’m not a child,” Pidge complained as she laid down.

        “No, but you’re cute anyway,” Hunk teased. He turned the lights off in the room before climbing into the bed behind Pidge.

        After a few moments, she could feel his large arms snaking around her, making heat rise up from her neck all the way to her cheeks.

        “Goodnight,” Hunk murmured sleepily, the whisper blowing Pidge’s hair. “Love you.”

        Pidge swallowed, her throat feeling dry. “Uh, um, yeah, love- um, good night,” she muttered, flustered beyond belief.

        Pidge closed her eyes and willed herself to fall asleep, or wake up, or whatever was going on.

        It was undoubtedly warmer than being in the bed with Lance. But then, Lance had been respecting her personal space. Pidge hadn’t let on that she didn’t know a thing that was happening, and if Hunk knew, he didn’t show it.

        It was just as hard falling asleep.

Chapter Text

        The first thing Pidge noticed when she woke up was that it was freakin’ cold .

        The next thing, of course, was that she wasn’t even in a bed.

        Pidge opened her eyes, feeling the crusts of sleep tangle her eyelashes as they fluttered open. There was a hand on her shoulder and Pidge craned her neck to see whose it was.

        It turned out to be Allura. Her hair was tied up in a bun with a couple of white strands framing her face and she donned a smart two piece dress suit, a pink rose in the chest pocket.

        She smiled kindly at Pidge as she sat up.

        “You pulled an all nighter again, didn’t you?” Allura asked, amused. Pidge yawned and stretched before looking around the room.

        The desk she sat at was cluttered with little bits and pieces of mechanics while all around the room were various finished and half finished products. On the floor was rolled and wadded up papers Pidge could make out the lines of blueprints on. The large double windows across the room gave a great view of the city scape and rising horizon.

        “Um, yeah, looks that way,” Pidge muttered, running a hand through her hair.

        She obviously hadn’t looked too much around Lance’s home, but he would have mentioned the room if it was in his, so since he hadn’t meant that Pidge wasn’t in his home. She’d done her fair bit of snooping around Hunk’s and there was no room like this there- and she wasn’t several months pregnant with quads, so she certainly meant that she wasn’t with him either.

        The only option left was that she was somewhere else entirely. Some other… dream. A vague thought of the future fruit flickered through Pidge’s mind, but Pidge tossed it away.

        It didn’t work. It was fantasy . Fantasy didn’t exist.

        Allura sent Pidge an understanding look. “You probably have questions,” she said, placing a hand on Pidge’s shoulder again. “Come downstairs when you’re ready. I’m sure breakfast is almost done.”

        Pidge nodded and watched as Allura left.

        Pidge began tapping her fingers on the desk in front of her, only then noticing the ring on her finger. A wedding band, with a rose colored jewel in the center. When she thought about it, Allura had been wearing a ring too… with a green jewel.

        Pidge tilted her head to the side and tapped her fingers on her cheek. Well, I’ve never thought about it, but it’s not like I’d say no. Allura’s not exactly unattractive. Body or mind.

        With a sigh, Pidge popped her neck and stood up, heading for the hole in the floor Allura had gone down. It turned out to have a spiral staircase leading down, and Pidge had the almost uncontrollable urge to slide down the railing.

        She pondered the idea for a minute before shaking her head and just walking down the stairs like a normal person.

        The house was large; modern and chic in every word. Some things even looked like Altean technology, though there were far too many indicators that they were on Earth for them to be anywhere else.

        There was another story below Pidge until she got to the kitchen. Allura sat at the head of the long table, looking over some papers from a yellow folder. Occasionally she hummed and she looked so concentrated on her work, Pidge didn’t want to interrupt her.

        But Allura heard Pidge’s approach and immediately neatly stacked her papers back into their folder. Pidge took the seat by Allura.

        They both stared at one another, but neither spoke.

        Finally, Allura broke the silence and placed her folded hands in front of her, the one that bore her wedding ring in front of her.

        “You really don’t believe in it, do you?” Allura asked finally.

        Pidge furrowed her eyebrows. “In what?” she questioned.

        “The soarta ,” Allura explained. “Future fruit, as it’s easily called. From Cinveon.”

        Pidge’s eyes bulged. “What are you…” Pidge trailed off, her mouth going agape. “How do you know ? How would you?”

        Allura tapped her fingernails against the tabletop, a small smile gracing her features. “My father once had a good relationship with the Civions,” she explained. “When I was a young girl, my father took me to their planet as a birthday present. I was given a soarta as a gift from the current ruler.”

        Allura looked down at her hands, gripping them tight.

        “That night when I went to bed, I dreamed,” she murmured, her voice so soft it almost went unheard. “Then I didn’t realize it was a dream. There was two different options of my future that I saw. The first is the destruction that my planet and people endured. A future where the Galra beat the Alteans. The other was one completely different.” She hesitated before going on. “I suppose I’ll never know the true outcome of that world, but I stood and fought by Father’s side in the war, and it did not end that day. We were not destroyed.”

        She sent a smile to Pidge, brushing hair behind her ear.

        “Of course, I know how to look for the signs if someone is experiencing a possibility,” she claimed.

        Pidge looked down at her hands and clenched them together. “I don’t see how it make any sense or how it could work,” Pidge argued. “Like- it’s far too fantastical for it to be real.”

        Allura let out a laugh. “Does everything have to be able to be proven by science?”

        “ Yes .”

        Allura laughed again and just then, the door that Pidge had come through before burst open. A girl with bright blonde hair and a neat school uniform sauntered through, sitting down, all prim and proper, across from Pidge. A boy, with a much messier uniform, hurried through after the girl.

        Allura tutted at the sight of him, gesturing him forward. “This is why you need to wake up earlier,” Allura chided the boy. “You have no need to school looking like this.”

        The boy groaned as Allura smoothed back his unruly dark hair. He was several shades darker than Pidge, and maybe just a tad bit darker than Allura.

        “ Mother ,” the boy complained, pulling away. “I’m fiiine .”

        The girl smirked behind her hand and the opposite door opened. Several people in identical outfits came through carrying trays and laying out food in front of everyone’s places. The boy slunk into the seat on the other side of Pidge.

        “Mum, are we getting a ride today?” the girl asked, looking right at Pidge after taking a drink of milk. The boy was excitedly slurping down orange juice.

        Pidge blinked. “Uh, uuumm-”

        “Uncle Matt is going to be giving you a ride,” Allura supplied, calmly cutting into her omelette as she saved Pidge from total embarassment. “Your mum and I have some things we need to discuss today, so it’s best if your uncle comes for you.” Allura finally looked up at an old fashioned grandfather clock by the door. “Which he will be soon, perhaps within the next fifteen minutes. So you best hurry up and eat or he’ll leave without you.”

        The children began scarfing down their food with such fervor that Pidge could hardly believe that the girl was the same prim and proper one who’d come in mere moments before and that the boy was still as clean as he was.

        Well, he had a milk mustache and his hair was still sticking up in all directions, but that’s besides the point.

        The doorbell rang and the children sat up quickly.

        “Uncle Matt! Time to go!” the girl exclaimed, dashing out of the room. Before the boy could get far, Pidge grabbed his arm and held him still while wiping the milk away.

        The boy grinned brightly with one of the sweetest smiles Pidge had ever seen. “Thanks!” he called before running after the girl. “Love you, Mum, Mother!”

        Pidge turned to Allura, about to ask a question, when he poked his head back in.

        “Hey, hey, you’re not gonna go without us, are you?” he asked.

        Allura’s smile faltered a bit. “Of course not,” she said. “We won’t be going until tomorrow anyways. Have a good day at school, and be good.”

        The boy gave her a thumbs up before running off.

        Pidge gave Allura a curious look. “What was that all about?” she asked.

        Allura squeezed Pidge’s hand. “That’s… not something that you need to worry yourself about right now,” she claimed. She stood and the staff entered the room and began cleaning up. “Come. We have a lot to discuss.”

        The first thing Allura did was call them both in to work for the day. Then she went on to explain what each of them did (Allura was a children’s lawyer and Pidge ran her own tech company, called Altea Tech., which she’d dedicated to making Altean technology with Earth’s resources).

        Then she explained about the children; Cera and Alfor, eleven and ten respectively. Both were adopted. When Allura talked about the adoption, she seemed to grow sad, and Pidge honestly felt like she was leaving something out. Some vital piece of information.

        But Pidge didn’t press the issue.

        Around lunch, Allura took Pidge out of the house and they walked through a park, snacking on food from a cafe as they did so.

        They came upon a bench by a pond and Allura began explaining about how they’d gotten together.

        She looked fondest when she said “The war was completely over and the universe built up again. I had nothing after that. No planet to return home to, no family, no mission. I was alone. Then you looked to me and said ‘There’s enough room on our damn planet for a couple more; if you haven’t got a home, I’ll share mine with you’.”

        To Pidge, it didn’t entirely feel like something she’d say. But she blushed at Allura’s expression anyway when she repeated the memory.

        The two enjoyed their time in the park together, Allura admitting that it had been a while since the two of them had made time for each other and had a proper date. Pidge took Allura’s hand at the statement.

        After all, even if she was dreaming or if this wasn’t her real lifetime or couldn’t remember anything or whatever the hell was going on, Pidge could tell Allura was kinda madly in love with her.

        Feelings were horrible, Pidge decided. They made things difficult.

        Upon arriving at home, Pidge left Allura to go up to the workshop. She needed time to not think and do a lot of thinking and just… absorb everything.

        Pidge sat at her desk, looking over blueprints to… something. She wasn’t entirely positive. But it looked simple enough that she wouldn’t have problems with it, but hard enough that it would keep her focused.

        She sat at one of the benches, various materials in front of her.

        She didn’t know how long she was up there, entirely focused on her project with nothing but the clicks and clanks of her materials to fill the silence. But at some point, Alfor had come up and silently, seamlessly, joined Pidge and helped with her work.

        Every step, every moment, seemed practiced and used to. Something that had been done a thousand times before.

        Pidge reached blindly for a wrench and Alfor picked it up, handing it to her. Pidge gave him a smile, and Alfor smiled brightly in return.

        The worked side by side, and laughed when oil spurted out of the machine they were building, soaking them and turning their hands black when they went to stop the leak.

        The sun was sinking on the horizon when Cera crept up into the workshop.

        She was out of her school uniform but wearing a frilly white shirt with half a dozen layers and a pink skirt. She eyed the blueprints Pidge and Alfor were working on.

        “Cera!” Alfor exclaimed when he spotted her, waving her over. “You wanna help?!”

        Cera glared, turning on her heels and moving away. “No way!” she exclaimed. “Dinner will be ready soon- you’re going to want to wash up before it is.”

        Alfor’s face fell as Cera stomped down the stairs.

        Oi. How’d I raise such a little bi- what’s the problem with him?

        Pidge turned to Alfor. He was frozen in place looking down at his hands. The expression on his face was something close to broken.

        “Cera never wants to work with me anymore,” Alfor muttered bitterly, mixed with sadness. “She never…”

        Pidge placed a shaking, hesitant hand on Alfor’s shoulder. “Come on,” she said softly. “Let’s go get cleaned up.”

        Alfor nodded, pulling away from Pidge and heading down the stairs. Pidge waited a moment, watching him go.

        That wasn’t the same cheerful boy who’d run into the dining room that morning. The same boy who’d worked so seamlessly with Pidge.

        Pidge rubbed the back of her neck, only thinking about the oil on her hands after she felt it rub off on her. She sighed heavily, heading down the stairs and to her and Allura’s room. Allura was on the phone when she entered, but ended the call before turning around.

        She gaped at Pidge. “You’re a mess,” she stated, making Pidge roll her eyes.

        “Obviously,” Pidge noted sarcastically. “I’m going to shower.”

        She stepped into the master bathroom and under the shower, letting the hot water beat down on her back. When she began to scrub down her body, she noticed a tattoo with her and Allura’s names on her calf.

        Allura and Katie Holt , it read in swirling letters.

        Pidge splashed her face with water and climbed out of the shower before pulling on a loose t-shirt and sweatpants.

        Dinner was a sordid affair, from Pidge’s point of view. Alfor had back his usual bluster and was excitedly telling both Pidge and Allura about what had happened at school that day and how he wanted to join the robotics club at school, but was pointedly ignoring Cera.

        When Alfor turned to begin on his dessert, Allura and Pidge shared a look. Pidge was more confused than anything, but Allura’s face was something sad.

        Once the dessert plates were cleared, Allura cleared her throat. “I believe it’s time for you two to go to bed,” she said. “Tomorrow will be a rather long day and we’ll be getting up early.”

        “Yes Mother,” they both chimed before heading off to bed. Alfor ran out of the room before Cera could do a thing, though she looked about ready to reach out for him. She dropped her hand before it’d even raised and left the room, frowning.

        Allura stood as well and gestured for Pidge to follow her. Pidge jumped from her feet and jogged after Allura, bare feet slapping against wood floors.

        “What’s up with them?” Pidge questioned. “This morning they were all- and then now they’re- and Alfor was- he was really upset, wasn’t he?”

        Allura led Pidge to their room and began the process of taking down her hair and pulling out her night clothes.

        “There is… something you will have to know,” Allura said. “Before you can make any logical decision about this possibility.” She held the thin pink nightgown close to her chest. “However, that’ll have to wait for tomorrow for an explanation. Tonight is not the night.”

        Pidge frowned. “I keep waking up in a different life every morning,” she grumbled. “I probably won’t even wake up here tomorrow.”

        Allura cupped Pidge’s cheek for a moment with a smile. “You will get your explanation,” she said, before moving away and changing. Pidge at least had the decency to turn away.

        Pidge wrapped her arms around her middle and chewed on her bottom lip.

        “Hey, you know about all of this… thing. What happens if… I don’t chose this lifetime?” Pidge asked. “Is this- Is any of this even real?”

        “Of course it’s real,” Allura claimed. “Because it has yet to happen. The future is always a real thing. Your choices create the path you walk.”

        “And if they don’t lead here?”

        Pidge turned around, to Allura having stopped her movement of turning the bedsheets down. Her head of lowered and she didn’t look up at Pidge.

        “I as I am will cease to exist,” she said finally, standing up and facing Pidge. “The children as they are will cease to exist. We have no way of knowing if they would exist at all.”

        Pidge choked on her own saliva. “What- you’d- you wouldn’t exist ?!” Pidge shrieked.

        Allura smiled softly, a bit pained. “This version of my future would not exist,” Allura explained. “I would go on in your timeline, but have no idea of what could have been. I would chose a different future.”

        Pidge looked down at the carpet, contemplating.

        She’d lived three different lives so far. And all of them seemed pretty great, even if she’d never thought about them being any sort of future for her.

        Lance, with his nice house and his- their- great kids and how incredibly considerate he was.

        And Hunk, even with the crazy amount of kids, was kind and amazing and she lived comfortably.

        And Allura- that was more comfortable than Pidge had ever imagined. She had her own workplace. She had a dream job, and two little midgets who were cool in their own way. Okay, so, Cera was perhaps a bit difficult to admit but Alfor was just perfect.

        “How the heck do I chose?” Pidge asked pathetically. “I don’t- I don’t any of those lives to disappear.”

        Allura pulled Pidge into a hug, wrapping her up tightly in her arms. “There’s still time,” she murmured. “There’s still time.”

        Pidge didn’t recall going to sleep that night.

Chapter Text

        For the first time, Pidge woke up alone. Rather, alone in bed. And once again, she was in a place she didn’t particularly know.

        Pale light trickled through the blinds of the bedroom windows as Pidge stretched. The sheets were soft and dark colored, and all she seemed to be wearing was an oversized tee-shirt.

        Pidge pulled herself into a sitting position to turn off the softly buzzing alarm clock. It was a ridiculous time to be up. Six A.M. was no time to be awake. For anyone.

        Across the room, there was a laptop on a desk with the screen lighting up with a video call. Pidge pulled herself out of the comfort of the bed to click the answer button upon seeing Shiro’s face.

        Pidge ran a hand through her hair and yawned as the call went through.

        Shiro smiled upon seeing Pidge. “Hey Pidgeotto,” he said. “Were you asleep?”

        Pidge hesitated for a mere second before answering. “I’m fine,” she said, smiling a bit. She hadn’t had a lot of time to figure out what was going on in this life, but if there was anything to go by earlier “possibilities”, as Allura had called them, she was probably married, and Shiro seemed like a good option.

        The door creaked open and a small boy popped his head through the crack. His hair was a mess and he was in rumpled pajamas, and it was quite obvious that he’d been asleep mere moments prior. In bed at least.

        “Daddy!” he exclaimed.

        The boy ran to the desk and peeked his head over the desk, reaching out for the laptop. Shiro laughed as Pidge picked him up to sit him on her lap.

        “How’s my little man, Kaz?” he asked.

        Kaz, as it seemed to be, began gabbering excitedly. Every so often, Pidge and Shiro’s eyes would meet and Shiro would smile. Pidge focused more on trying to figure out what was going on.

        Shiro’s hair was mostly shaved, Pidge noticed, and his face was littered with more scars than before. The background was a rough looking texture and whipped a bit, presumably from wind. It was probably some sort of tent.

        He wore a dark blue-grey tank top, but slung over the back of a folding chair, Pidge could see the green camouflage of a jacket and hat, a couple of stars sewed onto a dark blue coat that was laid across the seat of the chair.

        Oh dear God, I married a military man, didn’t I?

        Shiro speaking once again caught Pidge’s attention and out of her thoughts. “I’ve got good news for the both of you,” he said, making Kaz squirm in his seat on Pidge’s lap. “I’ve gotten leave to come home for Christmas. I’ll be able to come home within a couple of days.”

        Kaz cheered and Pidge smiled. “Mommy, Mommy, did you hear Daddy?!” he exclaimed, turning to smile at Pidge with a bright smile. “Daddy’s coming home for Christmas! He’s coming home for Christmas!”

        Pidge smiled and brushed hair out of Kaz’s face. “Yes, so I heard,” she claimed, looking back up at Shiro. “I guess we should be expecting you then.”

        For the next hour, the three of them spoke until an alarm on Pidge’s phone went off, reading Time to get ready for school . Shiro ended the call, letting Pidge and Kaz get ready for their day with promises calling later that night.

        Kaz practically dragged Pidge down the streets of the city until they’d reached his bus stop. He boarded the bus with the other elementary children easily and happily waved Pidge off from his seat on the bus.

        Pidge awkwardly waved back as the bus pulled away before stuffing her hands deep into the pockets of her coat and heading back home. She wasn’t positive she’d remember the way, but she had other things to think about…

        Kaz being at the top of her mind.

        She hadn’t really noticed early that morning while talking to Shiro, and the entire time they were getting ready they were going so quickly from one thing to the next she hardly had time to notice either.

        But he didn’t have a hand.

        It wasn’t really a stump; there were a couple fingers and what was probably meant to be a thumb attached to where the wrist might have been. A birth defect.

        Pidge knew about the cruelty of children; she’d been very smart herself in school and had been teased relentlessly for it, but there’d also been a girl who’d been similar to Kaz. Except she had a leg missing instead of a hand. It was hardly noticeable, save for her limp, when she wore long dresses. They’d swish around her foot and the bottom of her prosthetic, but you couldn’t really tell there wasn’t a leg because she wore a show on the bottom.

        However, though she was one of the kindest and smartest people Pidge had ever met, she was bullied exceptionally. And if she was not being bullied, she was being ignored and ostracised for being different.

        It had taken many of Pidge’s elementary years to even speak to the girl, and it sent a chill down her spine to think the same thing may be happening to Kaz.

        Eventually, after getting lost after a couple of wrong turns, Pidge actually made it back to the apartment.

        It wasn’t terribly small or large, just enough for the three of them. There was a tree decorated with glittering ornaments and some handmade ones by the window overlooking the city. Candy canes that obviously once had more abundance hung every few branches and a string of caramel popcorn, half eaten, was wrapped around it. A few brightly colored presents rested beneath the tree.

        Pidge sat on the chair nearest the tree, a dark velvet red, and picked up a present wrapped in red with gold bows. It read To Shiro, From Pidge in neat writing, and Pidge could almost imagine the version of her who’d wrapped it and set it under the tree silently despairing because it wouldn’t be opened Christmas morning, but instead be shipped off to him through the mail a day later.

        Pidge had witnessed it, close to every year, when her father was away at the Garrison. Her mother had close to wept when she and Matt had woken up Christmas morning without their father there.

        Pidge suppressed her smile at the thought of Kaz not having to go through the same thing. Well, at least for that year.

        Pidge placed the present back and went back to her snooping about the house.

        Wreaths of mistletoe hung in every window, and one made of bells on the door. A nativity scene was set up on the mantelpiece, surrounded by family pictures. One of Pidge and Shiro on what appeared to be their wedding day, one of a newborn Kaz, and a family picture of all three. Shiro was in his suit, Pidge in a nice dress, and baby a Kaz in her arms.

        Pidge ran a hand over the frame before moving to the kitchen to find food. The fridge was mostly empty- making Pidge glad Kaz had insisted on eating at school- so Pidge had to seriously dig around to find anything.

        In the end she took out a small cup of strawberry applesauce and orange juice and headed back to her room and getting on the laptop. She didn’t really know what she was looking for.

        Anything to pass the time, really. After looking all through her phone and computer and looking at the calendars on both, she’d figured she was on a two week break to be with Kaz (full name Kazuki according to the tags on some of the pictures on the computer) over his winter break and not leave him alone.

        By the time lunch had rolled around, Pidge was starving. She ended up calling in some Chinese and sat in front of the TV, watching what have been considered “old sitcoms” in that day and age. She managed to flip through enough channels to find the “really old sitcoms” after a while.

        The house was too quiet, it seemed, even with the TV on. Pidge wasn’t sure what to do. No work, no people. No… anything , really.

        She ended up in the kitchen, a scatter of cookie ingredients Pidge had scrounged up on the counter. She knew she’d have to go get groceries soon, but it was getting close to the time for Kaz to get home.

        An alarm rang out for Pidge to go pick Kaz up from the bus and Pidge left the cookies in the oven to bake. There’d be enough time for her to pick up Kaz and get back before the timer for the cookies went off.

        The timer went off just as they walked through the door. Both coughed as Pidge ran through the house to the kitchen and taking out the tray of chocolate chip cookies, smoke from a dirty burner filling the air.

        Kaz helped Pidge with the next batch of cookies, using the one hand to roll the ball of dough and place it on the tray.

        While they waited for their last tray of cookies to finish baking, some time later, they snacked on the first cookies. Pidge was not a great cook, not by any means, but she was liveable. She could survive on things other than fast food, even if she preferred the fast food.

        She’d been taught to cook, as had Matt. Neither of them were going to be reliant on others for food if their mother had anything to say about it.

        Kaz smiled at Pidge and she gave a weak smile back, trying to not stare too long at his misshapen hand.

        Once the last cookies were out of the oven and dished out on glass Christmas plates, Pidge patted her jeans down.

        “Whadda you say we go shopping, hmm?” she suggested, making Kaz cheer.

        He ran off and came back a few moments later, carrying both of their coats. After pilling on her own coat, Pidge knelt in front of Kaz to help him zip up his coat. Her fingers hesitated on the very top of the zipper fore less than a moment before she stood up and took his hand.

        She’d memorized the route to the nearest store a couple hours prior so she didn’t get lost again- and at night. That’d be bad.

        The sun was sinking as they exited the apartment, and Pidge wasn’t totally sure they’d make it back before it was fully down.

        The store was a little place with fluorescent lighting that was too bright and sticky floors that the bottom of Pidge’s shoes kept sticking to. She picked up an ugly purple shopping basket and walked with Kaz through the little place, picking up a few things like milk and bread and cereal, but also some mini pizzas for the next days’ lunch and some sandwiches and ranch doritos for their dinner.

        Kaz insisted on hot chocolate and marshmallows as well. When he wasn’t looking, Pidge slipped in a teddy bear he’d been admiring while waiting in the check out line.

        While they ate once they’d gotten home and put the groceries away, Kaz cuddled up to Pidge’s side while they watched The Grinch . He was fast asleep before the Grinch had even gone about giving back the presents.

        Pidge tucked him into bed and went about cleaning up the living room before sitting in the chair in front of the desk with the laptop. Rationally, she knew Shiro probably wouldn’t be calling yet because time differences were a thing and he was probably busy.

        That didn’t stop her from watching the lit up screen and watching her cursor blink. A few minutes passed, and the screen went dark. Pidge ran a finger over the mouse pad to light up the screen again.

        A bit later, she curled her knees up to her chest and rested her chin on them. She ran her finger over the pad when the screen went dark again.

        She stared unblinkingly at the screen, waiting. Just waiting. She looked down to her phone for the time, once.

        It was almost eleven by that time.

        She didn’t look again, but continued waiting. Waiting. Waiting. Waiting.

        If there’d been a ticking clock, Pidge probably would have thrown it across the room by then. Yet still she waited.

        Her eyes grew heavy and Pidge wrapped her arms tighter around herself, unwilling to get up to grab a blanket to keep the chill at bay in case that was the exact moment Shiro called.

        He’d promised he’d call. Pidge was used to Shiro keeping his promises, and she needed some familiarity in this whole thing.

        But Pidge’s eyes drifted closed before a call was ever made.

Chapter Text

        Pidge woke up with a pang of loneliness in her chest, only for it to be beaten away by the lean arms wrapped around her squeezing her tight.

        Pidge blinked open her eyes, immediately recognizing the room she was in, even if it had been days since she’d been there and so many things had happened.

        Freakin’ Lance and his lack of attention to person space-!

        “Lance!” Pidge complained, trying to pull Lance’s arms off of her. “Come on ! You freakin’ koala bear! Get off !”

        Finally, Pidge managed to push Lance away and he began rolling off the bed with an unmanly shriek.

        “What was that for?!” Lance exclaimed, stumbling over himself to get back on the bed.

        “I couldn’t breathe,” Pidge deadpanned. Lance turned pale.

        “Oh God, I’m sorry!” he exclaimed. “I tried- I just- I’m-”

        “It’s fine.”

        Pidge cut Lance off and turned to look at the bedside clock. It was about eight thirty, not an unreasonable time. Nothing seemed particularly… different. She even wore the pajamas she’d last worn when she was with Lance.

        It was an exceptionally strange thought.

        Pidge wrapped her arms around her body. She was… in one life one day and a different one the next and no matter how many explanations she was given, it was going to be confusing until it all stopped .

        But what about Keith? Is he the only one I don’t have a chance of a future with?

        Lance cleared his throat and stood. “I’m, ah, I’m just going to go get breakfast started,” he said, making to leave.

        In a panic, Pidge reached out and grabbed his hand. Lance looked back in surprise and Pidge turned pink as she let the hand go.

        “Sorry, sorry,” she mumbled, curling into a ball. “Just- bad dream.”

        Lance’s face fell and sat down by Pidge pulling her into his arms. She shook as his body heat spread into her.

        I’m not alone, I’m not alone right now. That’s right. Right now I’ve got Lance.

        Pidge closed her eyes and let out a hum of content as Lance rubbed her back comfortingly. They stayed like that for a few minutes until Lance pulled away a bit, though he didn’t quite let go.

        “You okay, Pidge?” he asked, his voice soft.

        Pidge nodded into his chest though she still wasn’t all that ready to let go. Lance seemed to sense her reluctance and took her hand as he led her to the kitchen. A cosy little place, with golden light streaming through the windows.

        Pidge sat at the booth- bare- thingy. Her mind was too muddled to think properly. Lance moved about the kitchen with ease, his eyes locking onto Pidge every so often while he worked. They never strayed from her for long.

        At some point in time, Lance turned on the radio and soft mambo music began playing through the speakers. He hummed along to the songs while he cooked.

        Pidge couldn’t help the smile that stretched her lips as she watched him.

        Breakfast was a hearty meal indeed, but Lance acted as if it was nothing. As if it was a normal occurrence. For all she knew, it was.

        Mattie and Nico came down the stairs around eight, bugging Lance and mostly attaching themselves to his legs about “When’s breakfast gonna be done, Papa?!” before catching sight of Pidge and piling on her.

        “Why don’t you and Mama go set the table,” Lance suggested with a laugh. “Breakfast is almost done.”

        Mattie took the plates from the table and bounded into the dining room, Nico running off with the knives and forks.

        “Don’t run with those!” Pidge shouted after them before sighing and running a hand down her face as the door slammed shut.

        Lance chuckled, placing a hand on her shoulder. Pidge looked up at him with irritated eyebrows. He was smirking and that just seemed to annoy her more.

        “You’re a good mother,” he claimed. “You really love those boys.”

        Pidge felt a pang in heart, looking towards the door. “How could I not love my own children?” she questioned. All of them. Even the ones you don’t know of. The ones you’d think I’m crazy if I told you about. Ones that wouldn’t exist if I told you about this life.

        Pidge broke away from Lance, taking a step towards the door.

        “I’m going to go make sure they’re not, well, getting themselves accidentally killed,” she claimed, giving Lance a bright smile she didn’t feel. If she looked at him long enough, she was sure he’d see it in her eyes.

        Lance began bringing out food as Pidge set the final plate. The food was good, for who had cooked it. Hunk’s was infinitely better, by a long shot, but she could honestly say Pidge could honestly say that when it came to native Cuban cooking, Lance was pretty good.

        Mattie and Nico were both quieter and slower in their eating that morning, both still various stages of drowsy. Pidge picked at her food, occasionally looking over to Lance.



        “I want you to teach me to drive.”

        Lance almost choked on his drink when Pidge asked the question. Er, made the demand as the case may be.

        “You’re twenty-seven years old,” he claimed. “You know how to drive.”

        “And I don’t remember the past twelve years, so I don’t know how to drive,” Pidge pointed out.

        “You’ve been piloting the Green Lion, even in the time before you lost your memory.”

        “Piloting something difficult and advanced like the Lions is vastly different than driving something as plain as a car .”

        Pidge smirked when Lance opened and closed his mouth, no words coming out, before pouting and giving up.

        “ Fine ,” he said with a dramatic sigh. “Don’t say I didn’t warn you.”

        “Why?” Pidge questioned.

        “It’s nothing,” Lance commented with an offhanded wave.

        “No, tell me.”

        “Um, no .”

        “Yes, yes .”


        “Lance, tell me !”

        Lance still refused to explain even when a few hours later, they stood in an empty plot of land several streets over. Hunk was with them, shuffling from foot to foot while shielding the boys behind him.

        “I really don’t think this is a good idea,” he muttered more than once. “Not a good idea, not a good idea, not a good idea.”

        Pidge sent him an unamused look before climbing into the driver’s seat. Lance stood behind the open passenger door, smiling lazily at the group.

        “You sure you don’t want to come along for the ride?” Lance asked, tilting his head.

        “Nope!” Nico exclaimed, hiding behind Hunk.

        “No way!” Mattie chimed.

        “Do you really want me to puke in your car?” Hunk asked, deadpanned.

        Pidge gripped the steering wheel in her hands tightly until her knuckles turned white, gritting her teeth as Lance got into the car and shut the door behind him.

        “One accident-” Pidge snarled, cut off by Lance’s hand on hers.

        “That you weren’t even driving in,” Lance said, gripping Pidge’s hand tightly. “It was not your fault. I don’t want you ever thinking that.”

        Pidge didn’t ask how she’d been in a car crash of all things if she hadn’t been driving. Though, of course, someone else may have been driving her. But the only one anyone ever talked about being in the car with her with Nico.

        Lance went on to explain all the functions and uses of the different devices in the car. The things she needed to worry about keeping an eye on while what could mostly be ignored.

        Then the actual driving began.

        Which was a terrible idea in and of itself. Pidge could almost understand why the others hadn’t wanted to be in the car with her- and why she couldn’t have been the one driving.

        She almost pouted, crossing her arms as she glared off into the horizon. “You said I could drive,” she grumbled.

        Lance was huffing out breaths as he swept messy hair out of his face. “You also pointed out you can’t remember learning-”

        “You said I could drive ,” Pidge complained, banging her head on the steering wheel and making the horn honk. She did that several times, unheeding of Lance’s attempts to get her to stop. She only did so once there was a tap on the window.

        She turned her head on the wheel, causing the horn to honk again, to see Hunk. He smiled a bit and waved.

        Pidge opened the door and climbed out, letting it slam behind her. Lance climbed out as well. Hunk chuckled a little bit as he rubbed the back of his neck.

        “It wasn’t that bad?” he offered.

        Mattie shook his head, Nico clinging onto his hand and following his brother’s example. “It was awf- awf-” He frowned as he couldn’t get the word out.

        “Awful,” Pidge supplied dryly.

        “Yeah, that too, Mama.”

        Nico broke away from Mattie and made his way over to Pidge, tugging on her shirt. She knelt down in the dirt and Nico made to tell her something like a secret, though his voice was far too loud for it.

        “If you done driving, Mama… Can we go home an’ watch Leg’en’ary Defender?” he asked. Pidge turned to look at him and he was grinning brightly. “Please please please?!”

        Pidge looked over to Lance and he chuckled as he rubbed the back of his neck. “It’s a movie based off our adventures,” he explained. “The boys have been a bit obsessed with it ever since it came out.”

        Pidge turned and smiled at Nico. “That sounds good to me,” she said.

        “Can Uncle Hunk come?!” Mattie asked excitedly, jumping by Hunk and pulling on his arm. “We can watch the movie and have popcorn and eat pizza and- and- and- please ?!”

        Lance laughed as Pidge stood up and Hunk was continuously pulled lower by Mattie’s pulling. “Well big guy, what do you say?” Lance asked. “Feel like stopping by for a bit?”

        Hunk laughed as well. “Looks like I really don’t have a choice,” he noted. “I’ll meet you over at the house.”

        Mattie almost refused to let go of Hunk’s arm, but finally relented when Lance claimed he’d get to pick some toppings for homemade pizza.

        Some time later, they were all gathered at the house. Lance pulled out some homegrown pizza sauce and other ingredients, the ones they didn’t have being bought at the store on the way home.

        Hunk shooed Pidge and Lance out of the kitchen as he got to work on the pizzas. Nico and Mattie got to stay behind because they were going to be helping put the toppings on.

        Lance looked through the movie shelf for Legendary Defenders as Pidge curled up on the couch. She was still smiling with amusement as she tilted her head off the back of the couch.

        “Hunk’s good with the boys,” she noted and Lance hummed in ackwnoledgement, a happy sort of agreement.

        Pidge shut her eyes, filled with content. But then a thought occurred to, a pang hitting her chest. If she and Hunk didn’t have their life… then… what had happened to him?

        “Does he have any of his own?” Pidge inquired, trying to keep the hurt out of her voice. If it showed through, she’d have to explain that there were other possibilities for her future she was experiencing and then Lance would think she was crazy and honestly that was just something she did not really want to deal with.

        In the midst of Pidge’s inner turmoil, Lance had frozen in his search without her realizing. “Uh, no,” he said, his voice also trying to hide his emotions. “It’s, ah, complicated? He’s not married, either.”

        Pidge struggled to keep the questions in, but she knew that whatever the answers were, it was Hunk’s place to give them if he was willing. And even if she didn’t like them, she couldn’t be greedy.

        She got to chose one lifetime. One possibility.

        Whatever his life was in this one, Pidge couldn’t begrudge him it.

        It wasn’t her place.

        After the first pizza came out, Lance popped in the movie and they all piled onto the couch, Nico on Pidge’s lap and Mattie on Hunk’s. To compensate for not having a small child, brought out a ridiculously big teddy bear that almost obscured his view of the TV.

        It wasn’t even halfway through the movie that Mattie and Nico both fell asleep.

        Pidge had kept quite the entirety of what she saw, but ended up tossing popcorn at the TV the next time character that was supposed to represent her said anything remotely scientific.

        It was just- it was all wrong !

        Pidge let out a “Booo!” as she threw the popcorn. Lance only laughed, smoothing hair out of Nico’s face as he did so. He gave Pidge a look with a twinkle in his eye.

        “You did the same thing when we saw it in the theater,” he said. “And got us out of it.”

        Hunk joined in on the laughter. “Good times, good times,” he said, also throwing popcorn at the TV when his terrible character came on screen. “Boo!”

        Lance followed suit, but half of his handful ended up flying backwards and onto Pidge. Pidge laughed menicingly.

        “Oh, you’re on,” she said, picking up the popcorn.

        Lance shrieked like a little girl and dove for cover behind the couch, holding up the teddy bear as a shield.

        “Low blow, using a teddy bear like that,” Hunk said, tsking his tongue and shaking his head. He took some popcorn and flicked Lance as well.

        “Oh, you’re not free either,” Pidge said, tossing some at Hunk.

        “Delicious ammo, my favorite,” Hunk noted, before throwing some at Pidge.

        In mere moments, it had turned into an all out food brawl. With careful consideration to not wake up the children.

        By the time the bowls were empty of popcorn and it was scattered all over the floor, the credits were rolling on the screen and the three of them were a laughing mess.

        “Reminds me of the Garrison,” Hunk said. “When it was just the three of us.”

        “We were all a bunch of misfits then, weren’t we?” Pidge agreed.

        Lance snorted, wrapping an arm around the both of them. “What are you talking about?” he questioned. “We’re still misfits!”

        The comment brought about another round of laughter. Lance looked around the room as he wiped tears away.

        “We should probably get this cleaned up, though,” he stated, earning himself a groan from both Pidge and Hunk.

        Mattie and Nico were moved to two separate couches as the adults began the cleaning process. Afterwards, Hunk left for him own home and Pidge and Lance moved into the kitchen so to not wake their sleeping children.

        Lance was showing Pidge pictures on his phone, catching her up to speed on the little things that had happened recently, when there came a cry from the living room. Mattie came running into the room, his eyes wide and watering.

        “Mama, Papa! Nico’s crying and- and- and I don’t know what to do!” he exclaimed tearfully.

        Lance and Pidge jumped from their seats, running into the living room. Once he saw Pidge, Nico jumped at her and wouldn’t let go. Pidge picked him up and looked over to Lance helplessly.

        Lance put a hand on her shoulder, shaking his head. He didn’t really know what was going on either. Pidge made a small whining noise in the back of her throat, not knowing what to do.

        But she sat down on the couch and thought back to when she’d been really little herself and had been comforted from a nightmare.

        She began singing oh so very softly an Italian lullaby her father had sung to her as she rubbed Nico’s back. Nico’s tears eventually stopped, but he still refused to let go of Pidge.

        For the rest of the day, Nico held onto Pidge. He wouldn’t let her out of his sight, even to go play with Mattie; he ended up tearing up at even the suggestion. Mattie puffed his chest out, claiming he’d go play by himself, though he turned with a look over his shoulder reluctantly.

        There was so many things going on that Pidge didn’t understand, and being a mother seemed to top the list. Even if she was a mother in every lifetime.

        Pidge bit her lip as Nico curled into her chest, smiling just a bit. Pidge worriedly ran a hand through his hair. It was soft under her fingers.

        Everything seemed to come back to thinking about the different possibilities. It was knowledge, Pidge decided, that people shouldn’t be burdened with.

        The choice was far too great.

        After dinner, Pidge had tucked Nico into his bed after reading him a story, playing with his hair and humming until he’d gone to sleep. Only then did she leave the room.

        Lance was sitting on the edge of the bed, leaning forward with his head in his hands. Pidge walked quietly over to him, putting a hand on his shoulder.


        Lance jumped at the sound of his name and Pidge withdrew her hand. Lance let out a shaky sound. It could have been a breath, it could have been some kind of forced laugh. It was painful, regardless.

        “Your, ah, family’s coming tomorrow,” he said, not looking at Pidge. “I, um, I’ve kept forgetting to tell you. We got so busy today, and… everything.” Pidge stayed silent, waiting. There was something else there, she knew. After another shaky breath, Lance finally looked up at Pidge, though he still didn’t meet her eyes. “There’s, um, something I have to explain to you,” he claimed. “But, it’s- it’s not something you need to hear tonight. To- Tomorrow. I’ll- I’ll tell you tomorrow.”

        Pidge was about to argue, claim that she was just going to be bothered until he told her so just spit it out already- but Lance had already turned away and gotten under the covers.

        Pidge furrowed her brows as she got ready for bed. She was in the bathroom when her cell phone began to ring from where it’d been left in her jeans pocket. With a huff, Pidge fished it out to see the hospital on the caller ID.

        Pidge swiped to answer the call and held the phone to her ear, still kneeling on the tile. “Hello?”

        “Katie McClain? This is Dr. Ro. We spoke yesterday at the hospital.”

        Pidge jumped and fumbled with the phone for a moment, having almost dropped it. “Yes, I remember,” she claimed, not admitting that she’d almost forgotten. “Is something the matter?”

        Pidge held her breath as Dr. Ro spoke. “Yes, I’m afraid,” Dr. Ro admitted with a heavy sigh. “I’ve been looking over your brain scans and I found something worrying in them. I’d like you to come in tomorrow so we can get some rescans, just so I can make sure that it’s nothing.”

        Pidge fumbled with her words, her thoughts not processing what she’d just heard.

        “Mrs. McClain? Is something wrong?”

        Pidge shook her head, clearing her throat. “No, no, I’m fine,” she said, falling lower onto the floor. “Ah, um, what time do you want me to come in?”

        Dr. Ro hummed and the sound of papers flipping through could be heard. “Does noon work for you?”

        “Yes! Yes, ah, um, noon is fine,” Pidge said, her breathing finally coming back. “Was that all?”

        “Yes, thank you. Goodnight Mrs. McClain.”

        “Goodnight, Dr. Ro.”

        Pidge sat where she was for a few moments, just clutching the phone in her hand once it’d been disconnected. So many scenarios went through her head, and not one of them good.

        Except- Except maybe it was a mistake. Maybe- Maybe there’s nothing to worry about.

        Finally, Pidge managed to shakily pull herself to her feet and go back to the bedroom. Lance still faced away from Pidge. She wanted to tell Lance about the phone call, but didn’t think they needed to worry about it that night. Too many bad thoughts before sleep.

        So she just went over to the bed and got in. Once under the covers, Lance turned away from her. But Pidge wasn’t having any of that. She wrapped her arms around him and held him close.

        He let out a low chuckle that Pidge could feel in her arms. “Now who’s the koala?” he teased.

        “You,” Pidge grunted. “But if you’re not going to talk to me, you get to deal with me.”

        Lance laughed again, a lighter sound than before. Not as forced. “Should I start not talking more?”

        “You do and these hands will find your neck.”

        The only reply Pidge received was Lace turning around and wrapping his arms around her small body. And that was how she fell asleep.

Chapter Text

        What Pidge woke up to was familiar, but not in the most pleasant way. She hadn’t even opened her eyes and she could tell a few things. The first was that she was in a bed. The second was that she was that she was alone.

        The third made it different, because the other side of the bed was warm. She’d been alone, but not for long. It was a recent development.

        Pidge creaked open her eyes.

        She was somewhere she recognized, but not because she’d been there in any of her previous lifetimes, but instead because it was basically the last place she’d visited before leaving Earth behind.

        Keith’s house. More specifically- his room.

        Our room, probably.

        There was a fussing sound, drawing Pidge’s attention. She blinked and rubbed her eyes as she sat up. Just a few feet away was a crib with a small baby in it.

        Pidge pulled herself from the bed and went over to the baby. It was covered in a light yellow blanket, Robyn stitched messily onto the corner of it. The baby blinked its eyes open to look at Pidge, a violet color Pidge had only seen on Keith be exposed.

        The baby lifted uncoordinated hand out for Pidge and Pidge instinctively reached down and allowed the baby to wrap its fingers around her finger.

        Pidge smirked a bit down at the baby, running her hands through the thin wisps of dark hair. “I wonder what you are,” she mused softly. “I’ve got the boys; Mattie and Nico and Theo and Jace and Kaz and Alfor. Then there’s Cierra and Chloe and Opal and Cera and- well that’s it, isn’t it?” The baby- presumably Robyn- giggled and Pidge smiled a bit. “You know, I think Cera’s name should be different, don’t you? Too similar to Cierra.”

        The baby didn’t give an answer, but Pidge didn’t expect it to. Though, it finally had calmed down enough and was dosing again.

        Pidge slipped her finger away and slipped out of the door, creeping through the house. There were a few changes- it looked sturdier for one- but it was mostly the same as Pidge remembered it. Though, to be fair, it could probably be a bright pink (highly unlikely) and Pidge wouldn’t know the difference.

        She’d had a lot more on her mind and a lot more to store in her brain than trivial details like that.

        When she made it to the front porch, after having found no one else around anywhere , the first thing Pidge noticed was Keith. He was leaning against the wood railing while a cigarette was held loosely in his hand, ash occasionally dropping off the end. The sun hadn’t even risen and light barely touched the sky at the horizon. The only sound was an echo of the wind.

        It was peaceful. Not the chaotic peace of Hunk’s life or the lonely peace of Shiro’s; it wasn’t like the fun though kinda messy, we’re-still-figuring-this-out peace of Lance’s or the orderly, afraid-to-break-the-peace of Allura’s.

        Here- it was the kind of peace like the world had stopped. Like time had paused. Like the world could be going on, but yet it wasn’t because the only thing that existed was here and now and it was a kind of peace Pidge hadn’t known in a long time.

        Up in space, there’d been so much everywhere, all the time and Pidge always felt like she couldn’t take it all in, ever, no matter how much she tried, and oh did she try .

        Pidge could see the appeal of this little house in the middle of nowhere.

        Pidge went over to the railing and leaned against it by Keith. “Hey,” she said, her voice quieter than she’d meant to make it. It fit with the peace.

        Keith took a long drag from the cigarette as he looked at Pidge out of the corner of his eye. He looked towards the ground, the expression on his face unreadable. “So you’re awake.”

        Neither of them spoke another word. Pidge tried to judge Keith’s emotions or expression, but she’d never been apt at that. And Keith was such an emotional person- not like Lance who constantly held his heart on his sleeve and his emotions on his face, but in the way that he felt so much and the strongest emotion would explode out if it got too much but he held it all in all the time- that it was even more difficult.

        Keith kept his gaze on the ground, his shoulders tense. They dropped low after a few moments of silence.

        “I’m glad you came back,” he said, his voice soft and broken. Pidge had only heard him like that after Shiro disappeared.

        She didn’t have a clue what he was talking about, obviously, but could tell that there were strong feelings for this version of her future. Strong feelings… Pidge didn’t know if her future self reciprocated.

        “Of course,” she said, nothing else to say.

        Keith gave her a disbelieving look before tossing the cigarette into the sand and heading back inside. Leaving Pidge alone.

        Not the peace I thought it’d be…

        Breakfast was simple soggy cereal and milk with some dry toast- the butter being all gone. Robyn was brought out by Keith after a bit when she- as Pidge found out- started fussing. Keith held her on his lap, giving her some sort of sad smile.

        A bit of relief, a lot of love, and something a bit sadder that Pidge couldn’t name.

        Internet didn’t work too well so far away from civilization, and the TV didn’t so much either. Just a single, blurry, news station. With Keith and Pidge’s faces plastered over it.

        Keith flinched when Pidge settled on the couch to watch the story they were broadcasting. Pidge looked over at him from the corner of her eye; he curled into himself around Robyn. Pidge’s attention was pulled back to the TV.

        “ -fugitives Keith Kogane and Katie Holt, also known as Pidge Gunderson, are still on the loose, though have not been seen in the last several months. For those of you new to the story, here’s a recap: Twelve years ago, Kogane and Holt disappeared with other, at the time, Garrison students Lance McClain and Hunk Garrison. The four were missing many years until late May of last year when they suddenly appeared, a deceased McClain and Garret with them. We have recently been informed that Takashi Shirogane and Matthew Holt were found dead at their hideout. Remember, everyone, if you encounter either of these two fugitives, call for help immediately for they are extremely dangerous-

        The screen blinked out and Pidge finally blinked. Throughout the entire report, she’d stared, wide eyed, at the screen.

        -deceased McClain and Garret-

        -Takashi Shirogane and Matthew Holt found dead-

        Pidge was shaking and couldn’t stop; Keith flinched when he looked at her.

        Pidge knew that to this future of herself, it would be old news to her. That if it’d been over a year since it happened, she wouldn’t be crying no matter how much she wanted to. She wasn’t that kind of person.

        But this wasn’t the future Pidge. This is was the old Pidge. The Pidge of the “past”, whatever the hell that was. The one that still had hope of finding her family and going back to Earth to live a happy, normal life.

        And the pain was like a fresh wound.

        Tears leaked from the corner of her eyes and she reached up with shaking hands, barely believing that they were real.

        She clenched her fists at each side of her head, curling into a ball and letting herself cry, uncaring that Keith would see her- not that she’d have been able to stop it if she’d tried.

        “After everything-!” she sobbed, clinging to her hair and not processing the pain. “After everything we went through! After everything that happened, we still- they still-” She broke into a fit of sobs, her body wracking with the broken sounds.

        Pidge could feel Keith awkwardly wrap his arms around her, and she tried to push him away. She really did. She didn’t need his pity or his comfort. She just wanted to wallow in her sadness.

        But Keith was stronger than her. Always had been. He refused to let Pidge go even when she beat against his chest. He rubbed her back like it was all custom. A habit.

        Something that had been done many times before.

        Finally, Pidge stopped and just clenched his shirt in her fists. They stayed on the couch together until Pidge had tired herself out. And even then, though she only sniffled occasionally, they didn’t move for a long time.

        The sun was high on the horizon and making the heat in the house almost unbearable. The fan Keith turned on didn’t help much, either.

        A bit later, Keith came out of the bedroom with a backpack and motorcycle helmet.

        “I’m, uh, I’m… going into town for some supplies,” he said, not looking Pidge directly in the face. “Do you- Do you want anything?”

        “I’m fine.” The answer was immediate. Clipped. Broken.

        Keith looked about ready to heave a sigh, but instead held it in as he turned around and headed to the door. “Okay. I’ll… be back in a few hours.”

        The door slammed shut on the way out and Pidge flinched. Robyn just giggled from her spot on the floor.

        Pidge allowed herself to fall over onto her side on the couch, draping her arm down. Robyn grabbed her hand and began slobbering on it. Pidge couldn’t bring herself to care.

        Everything just felt… numb.

        She clenched her eyes shut, fighting back more tears. If she’d thought Shiro’s was bad, with how lonely she got, then this- this was so much worse. There was no way to describe it. Pidge didn’t want this lifetime, not when they’d lost so many .

        Pidge opened her wet eyes and looked down at the baby girl. She giggled up at Pidge, reaching up her pudgy arms.

        With a small sigh, Pidge picked her up and held her close.

        “This place isn’t so bad,” she choked out, sort of to the baby but mostly to herself. “If- If we were just out here to get away from everything, to live a calm life, a peaceful one- that I could have dealt with. I- I probably could have done some stuff? A- A shop, maybe. Or… Or not. But this-” Pidge held Robyn closer, pressing her nose into the little girl’s hair. “This I don’t know how to deal with.” She sniffled again as Robyn began to fuss. “I don't know if it can change.”

        The day drew long and sweltering, and Pidge ultimately only found comfort in the bedroom with the windows shut up and no light, therefore no heat, getting into the room. She ended up moving the fan into the bedroom as well, and both Pidge and Robyn fell asleep.

        Pidge was awoken to Keith shaking her shoulder as he whispered “I’m back.”

        He looked a little worse for the wear, but mostly exhausted.

        After bandaging him up, Pidge dragged Keith into the bed where they both curled around Robyn, Pidge keeping their hands entwined.  

        Neither of them wore a wedding band, and Pidge couldn’t help but wonder if they were even together like that, or if Robyn had been an accident and they were just kinda sticking together because they were the last two or if they were together just not married together.

        So many possibilities, so little information. And she’d already had one freak out that day. Asking Keith about it would just get her too many questions she hurt too much to answer. All that crying had made her body sore and worn out.

        Pidge rubbed her thumb over Keith’s knuckles, bloody and bruised as they were. The only sound was the buzz of the fan and Robyn blubbering in her sleep. Eventually, the tension left Keith’s shoulders and he let out gentle snores as well.

        Pidge continued her lazy movements. She was never much one for staying grounded. She didn’t like staying in one place for too long, unless she was working on her projects. At those points in time she’d get so absorbed she couldn’t be bothered to move for days, usually.

        But this was different.

        This was an uneasy peace. There was heartbreak here, one that had just had the lid roughly pulled off it, and an apparently unstable or something Pidge who’d left but came back, and she still didn’t know what that was about.

        Finally, Pidge pulled herself to her feet, groaning as she got off the bed. Her muscles complained, but she moved on anyway. Robyn began to whine and Pidge froze in the doorway, ready to turn around and go back to the baby so she didn’t wake Keith. But she stopped almost as soon as she’d started when she found Keith’s fingers in her sleep.

        Pidge let out a relieved sigh as she stepped out of the room.

        She made her way to the kitchen, finding that most of the supplies Keith had gotten had been groceries.

        After spying a few objects, Pidge’s face lit up with a devious, planning look and she began pulling things out and piling them on the counter.

        She was a girl on a mission.

        Keith didn’t wake up until the sun was shining through the windows and making think a deep gold from the sunset.

        Which was okay, because it had taken Pidge that long to make an edible meal. Which, well, they’d have to share. None of the others turned out well enough.

        “I fed and changed Robyn, so that’s okay for a while-” Keith said as he exited the bedroom. He froze, his voice caught in his throat when he saw Pidge.

        “Morning, sleeping beauty,” Pidge teased, placing a couple plates on the table as Keith sat down. “I thought… we could do with a picker-upper.”

        Keith eyed the meal set before him. Some of the dishes were burnt, some were a bit undercooked, but they were all basically edible. A bad replica of the meal Pidge had eaten with Lance and Mattie and Nico just the day before.

        Keith’s eyes watered and he placed a hand on his mouth to muffle any sounds that might have escaped. He looked over at Pidge. “You- You did-”

        Pidge nodded, sitting down by him and handing him a fork. “Let’s eat,” she said softly.

        Both of them dug into the food, though neither shared a word. Their clasped hands and the silent tears that occasionally fell onto the table were words enough.

        It was like a broken bone, Pidge supposed; sometimes you had to break it to align it again. Sometimes in order to heal, you had to cry.

        Keith pulled out a sketchbook after the food was gone and they’d washed the pots and pans and plates. As he flipped through the pages, Pidge could see images of the other Paladins, though some of them got blurrier as the pages went on. As if Keith was slowly forgetting their image.

        Pidge sat on the floor for a while, playing with Robyn. Read her a couple little, little kids books. Keith sketched in his book.

        A restless peace was settled over the house.

        Easy, but uneasy.

        Time was different in the desert.

        It seemed to go so quickly, but seem as if no time had passed at all.

        When it was dark outside, Pidge gripped the edge of Keith’s shirt before he could go away. “Stay,” she whispered.

        And he did.

Chapter Text

        Pidge woke up screaming, as if from a nightmare. Though, considering, a nightmare was almost exactly what Pidge had encountered since her last time waking up in that room.

        A tired hum came from Pidge’s side and she turned to look down just as Allura stirred. The sheets and her white hair fell over her perfectly, without a strand out of place, and Pidge couldn’t help but think of The Tale of Sleeping Beauty, some stupid fairytale she’d been told as a kid.

        It fit Allura, though, and the calmness eased her rapid heart.

        Allura’s eye blinked open and she sat up while giving Pidge a worried look. She placed a hand on Pidge’s face. “Are you alright?” she asked. “What happened?”

        “It’s… nothing,” Pidge denied, looking away. “Nothing at all.”

        Allura’s hand held steady as she brought Pidge’s face back to look at her. “Are you sure?” she whispered, looking sad and at the same time knowing that Pidge had more to say than she was letting on.

        Pidge looked down, pulling Allura’s hand down as well. She didn’t have the energy to let go of the wrist. Her eyes go teary again, just thinking about the things that had transpired since the last time she’d been in Allura’s lifetime.

        “Can they… change?”

        Her voice choked, her throat thick. There was a lump trying to make its way down and fall heavy on her stomach and make her sick. She felt like she was stuck with pins, but at the same time was being held down by lead.

        She looked up at Allura, almost unable to trust her voice. “The lifetimes. Can they change?” she asked again.

        A look of understanding crossed Allura’s face. She wrapped her arms around Pidge tightly. “Nothing is ever set in stone,” she said, her voice soft but strong. “Of course they can change. The futures I saw were only two of an infinite amount of possibilities. The same for you.”

        Pidge let out a supposed-to-be-dry-but-watery-because-she-was-crying laugh. “Instead I’ve got freakin’ five.” She furrowed her brows. “And… I don’t know if I can choose one.”

        Allura laughed that tinkling little laugh of hers as well. “Will you tell me?” she suggested.

        Pidge nodded before pulling back. She and Allura sat across from one another, and Pidge looked at her hands as she began talking.

        She explained about how Lance’s lifetime was the one she’d woken up in first, and had thought she’d just… lost her memories. That was just the fifteen year old Pidge talking. About how she had two little boys named Mattie and Nico in that lifetime and Lance was still a cheesy romantic but he was also considerate and didn’t push her. About how she’d been in a car accident before waking up there and still hadn’t figured out all the details.

        Pidge explained that in Hunk’s lifetime, she had Cierra and Chloe who were twins and Opal, Theo, and Jace who were triplets and she was pregnant with quads- Allura laughed at that news. She explained that Hunk was still as much of a worry-wart as he had been on the castle, but he only had good intentions.

        She explained her loneliness in Shiro’s, when Kaz was gone and Shiro was away in the army and he hadn’t called even though he promised and yes she was still hung up on that because it doesn’t matter what else is going on, Shiro doesn’t break promises . How she’d waited up all night, but no call ever came.

        She explained the pain she felt in the last life. With Keith. Their little girl. Robyn. How it’d been peaceful, but not a lonely kind. How she thought it’d be a good life. But… everyone… had died in that lifetime.

        Allura allowed Pidge to cry without being judgemental. She held Pidge in her arms, murmuring comforting words.

        When PIdge had run out of tears, she felt many times better. She sat up and wiped her tears away, smiling brightly at Allura.

        “But I can change it,” she claimed. “You said so. I just… have to make sure none of them get hurt.”

        Allura smiled back at her, but then her expression dropped. “You’ve already experienced such heartbreak,” she said. “I do not think this is the best day to do this.” She let out a soft sigh. “However, the children want to go.”

        “Go where?” Pidge questioned.

        Allura sent her a soft look. “You’ll see when we get there,” she promised with a broken voice.

        Two hours later, Pidge dressed in a simple black dress Allura pulled out of the closet and sitting in the car with the rest of her little family. Allura was driving, still refusing to tell Pidge anything about their destination. She’d been quiet that morning as she slipped into a pink dress and put her hair up.

        Cera and Alfor were quiet in the back seat, both unbearably solemn. Like Pidge, Cera wore a black dress, though she had a pink rose pinned to the chest, but Alfor wore a pink shirt. Both carried irises in their hands. Cera’s yellow while Alfor’s were a blue and purple.

        The pink vaguely made Pidge uncomfortable, mostly for the reason that Allura was Altean and pink was special for Alteans but Pidge, for the life of her, couldn’t remember why .

        She knew Allura had mentioned it once, but, God, it felt like a lifetime ago.

        The iron fence they drove by seemed to be going on forever before they finally turned. In all honesty, Pidge was only blankly seeing it and nothing beyond, but was seeing everything in a crystal clear picture when they passed through the gate.

        A cemetery. Oh God. Not here too, not here too, not here to. Please, please, no-

        Allura stopped the car on one of the concrete roads that wounds through the cemetery. She and the children climbed out, though it took several for Pidge to follow.

        Allura cast Pidge a sad smile before taking her hand. Pidge followed blindly as Allura led her down the path.

        They walked for a few moments, every so often turning a corner. The path got smaller until there was no hope that a car could have ever gotten through.

        Pond spread out on Pidge’s left, a large expanse that some ducks and geese floated on. A smile broke out on Alfor’s face and he darted away, running to a grave at the end of the path. He knelt in front of it before hazardly placing the flowers in a stone vase attached.

        Though Pidge couldn’t hear a word he said, she could tell he was talking excitedly and happily. Cera looked up at the two older women before gripping the flowers tighters and marching with purpose over to the grave. She hesitated before throwing the flowers at it and running off.

        Pidge’s eyes widened and she looked up at Allura. Allura put a hand on Pidge’s shoulder and led her to the grave.

        “-and I’m gonna join the robotics club! Well, Mother says I need to wait a bit ‘cause it’s dangerous around all those things an’ all, but Mum lets me work with her in her workshop, so I guess I can wait.” Alfor giggled out a small laugh and Pidge smile down at him in all his innocence.

        Her eyes had refused to look at the name of who was on the stone, but eventually she couldn’t hold back. Her eyes were drawn to the words.

        Charles Holt.

        It was not a name she recognized, but still Pidge tensed. He… was only twelve years old…

        “Watch for your sister, Alfor,” Allura said, placing a hand on his head and ruffling his hair. “We’ll be back in a few minutes.”

        Alfor looked up with a smile. “Yeah, okay,” he said, before turning back to the stone.

        Allura led Pidge down the path, neither of them saying a word for a few minutes. Finally, Pidge couldn’t bear the anxiety anymore.

        “Is… there anyone else here?” she asked.

        Allura looked over at Pidge out of the corner of her eyes. “No,” she said. “Only… Only Charles.”

        “Who’s Charles, Allura?”

        Allura hesitated for a fraction of a second. “You deserve to know,” she said with a heavy sigh. “Charles is- was- Cera’s brother. Cera and Alfor aren’t related b blood, but Cera and Charles were. At the time, we were looking into the adoption of Cera and Alfor when we found Charles. He was five at the time, and we couldn’t very well part the siblings, so we took them both.” Allura sent Pidge a smile. “The five of us- we were a good family. But that all changed two years ago.”

        Pidge wasn’t sure is she wanted to hear the rest, but she knew she needed to. The two rounded a corner and spotted Cera in the distance. She was under a tree, her knees pulled close to her chest and her face buried in her knees. Allura stopped, placing a hand on Pidge’s elbow.

        “Cera was a reckless child,” Allura explained with a heavy voice. “She… liked fun. She was much like Alfor. She used to join you in your workshop, no matter how much I discouraged the subject. We were out at a park while visiting your parents. We’d only looked away for a moment, but somehow she’d ended up in the street. She hadn’t noticed a car coming. We were too far, but Charles… Charles wasn’t.”

        She didn’t need to say anything else. Pidge got the picture.

        And it wasn’t a pretty one.

        They spent some time there,each taking their moment to speak to “Charles”. Cera had taken the shortest amount of time and her eyes were rimmed red when she returned to the car. Allura had fixed the flowers so they looked neat while she knelt by the grave.

        Pidge hadn’t known what to say.

        Of course, it was one of those things. She didn’t know Charles. The person she had been- well, she did. Not- Not the Pidge as she was now.

        There was a future where this could happen.

        The one thing she made sure to say was that she promised it wouldn’t happen if she ended up with this lifetime.

        Then she returned to the car. Alfor and Cera were both already in the car. Ignoring each other. Of course.

        “Ready to go?” Allura asked.

        Pidge nodded slowly, holding her arms in a loose fold. “This… isn’t definite, is it?” she questioned. “If I chose you.”

        “It’s only the most likely possibility of this lifetime,” Allura explained.

        Pidge snorted, looking up with a smirk on her face. “Then obviously fate or whoever or whatever chose me to see this doesn’t know me too well,” she claimed. “Because I’m not gonna let this happen.”

        Allura smiled endearingly and they climbed into the car.

        Lunch was another quiet meal once they’d arrived home, both Allura and Pidge trying to coax anything out of the two. Not they tried too hard. They’d just gone to visit their brother’s grave. It was a reality check, and not a pleasant one at that.

        Eventually, Allura left to go finish up some paperwork and Alfor left to go get a head start on his homework he’d missed for the day.

        Cera was eating slow, barely taking any food as she raised the fork from her plate to her mouth. She still had over half of her plate left over when she finally set her fork down and and pushed her plate away.

        “Excuse me,” she mumbled, standing and not looking at Pidge.

        Pidge stood as well and pushed her own plate away as she did so. “Not so fast,” she said, causing Cera to jump and look at her with wide eyes. “Come with me.”

        “I should really be getting homework done-”

        “Nope, you’re coming with me.”

        Pidge took Cera’s ear and dragged her out of the room. Cera shrieked at the pull, fighting it the entire time. Pidge only stopped once they’d gotten to her workshop.

        Pidge stood in front of Cera, a hand on her hip while the other gestured around the room. “What do you see?” she questioned.

        “It’s your workshop,” Cera deadpanned. “ Greeeat . Can I go now?”

        Pidge frowned. “No,” she said. She turned, both arms outstretched. “This is my space. My safe haven. My place to go when I need to think, to not think, or just destress.” She whirled around to Cera. “I’ve gotta trust people to let them into my place. Or think there’s a good reason to let them in.”

        Pidge grabbed a wrench from a nearby workbench and tossed it at Cera. Cera fumbled as she tried to catch it, ending up looking like she was about to start swinging with a fearful look on her face.

        “What do you expect me to do with this?” she questioned.

        Pidge smirked as she tilted her head towards the machine she’d been building last time with Alfor. “Give it a whack.”

        Cera blanched, but then she glared, dropping the wrench. “I can’t do that!” she shouted.

        Pidge folded her arms, her lips pursed. “And, why, exactly?”

        “Because it’s not something girly!”

        Pidge quirked an eyebrow. “And…?”

        Cera’s face was going red and she looked like a petulant child who was ready to stomp her foot. “ AND ! I’m a girl , which means I have to be girly !”

        “Who says?”

        Cera blinked, the redness and anger melting off of her like a slow cooked, steamed roast falls right off the one and melts in your mouth.


        “Who says?” Pidge demanded once again. “I’m a girl, aren’t I? Sure, when I was your age I enjoyed dresses and skirts and pretty things. That doesn’t mean I didn’t also enjoy books or working with my hands. Hell, I’d wear a dress while doing it. So, who says?”

        Cera rolled her eyes, looking away from Pidge. She crossed her arms in a way very much like Pidge. Even if it wasn’t by blood, they were surely related. “Everyone at school,” she mumbled crossly. “I’m blonde . I have to be girly . I can’t be smart , I can’t be strong . I can’t- I can’t do reckless or boyish things like work on mechanics or cars or machines. That’s what everyone at school says.” She closed her eyes tight. “And it’s what I say because it’s my fault that Charles is gone because I was too stupid to listen and stay out of the road because I was too reckless!”

        Pidge stared at the girl who’d endured such hardship. Her brother, her live- well, once living- blood. And she blamed herself. There was one point when Pidge had felt the same about Matt’s disappearance.

        Pidge silently picked up the wrench and pressed it into Cera’s hands before leading her to the machine. She silently began working while Cera just watched.

        Cera eventually took up a random nut and screwed it into place on the machine. Pidge didn’t comment. Neither did she.

        It wasn’t as smooth and flawless as with Alfor, but it was something , at least.

        “I’ve always liked machines better than people,” Pidge said aloud. “I’ve always dealt with them better. Here on Earth, they don’t have any complicated emotions to worry about. Though, back with Voltron, there was the planet that was made up of nothing but robots and they sure had emotions. But here? They’re not so complicated. It’s easy. Time consuming. You don’t have to think about anything except what’s right in front of you. No risk of any attachments and getting hurt.”

Cera looked up from her work. “Then how’d you fall in love with Mother?” she questioned. “Why’d you decide to adopt us if you like machines better?”

Pidge shrugged. “Because I’m a person too,” she explained. “I mean, I guess . Being around people is complicated. Not the kind of complicated my brain can compute usually. But I guess over the years I’ve learned that people can be a good thing. That machines are a good escape, but you don’t always need one.” Pidge grunted as she twisted a piece into place. “You, on the other hand, are completely different. You thrive on being around people and being accepted. Not gonna say you have to stop, ‘cause that’s who you are, but I’d suggest it if it hinders parts of you you’d still like to be.”

        Pidge let out a sigh and wiped sweat off her brow before putting the wrench down.

        “Find a balance,” she said. “Be who you want to be. I couldn’t care less about what others say about me, which is why I can do whatever I want. You have to find what works for you.”

        Cera looked down. “What if I can’t find a balance?”

        “There’s still time.”

        The dinner that night was a bit lighter than both lunch and the dinner from before. Cera was talking a bit more, and she and Alfor seemed to have made up a bit.

        Pidge wasn’t sure if it was what she had said, but Allura smiled happily at her from across the table.

        Pidge curled up in a ball in the bed that night. Allura climbed in behind her and wrapped her arms around Pidge with a content hum.

        “You’ve handled today well,” Allura mused, her chin resting on Pidge’s shoulder.

        Pidge snorted. “I’m frankly surprised I haven’t gone crazy yet,” she claimed. “Anyway, there’s a lot of things I’d rather didn’t happen.So I’m gonna do everything to make sure they don’t.”

        Allura laughed. “And I’m sure you’ll do it,” she whispered. “I believe in you.”

        “Thank, Allura.”

Chapter Text

        Time was weird.

        Dreams were weird.

        A dream within a dream within a dream within a dream within a dream about time and a future that may or may not happen.

        Pidge was floating.

        It was dark, and cold, and she was floating.

        People were talking, and yet it was silent.

        There was nothing, and yet too much.

        She closed her eyes, and yet they were wide open.

        Time was weird.

        Dreams were weird.

        Little flickers of memories that weren’t really memories but things that could happen filled the space.

        She turned to reach for one, only for it to blink out like a light.

        One, two, three, four, five.

        Each future, gone without a sound, without a whisper.

        A dream within a dream within a dream.

        It was too hot, but she shivered with cold.

        The silence was too loud.

        Spinning and spinning and spinning and spinning, reaching for a future just out of reach- and yet never moving at all.

        Dreams were weird.

        Time was weird.

        Pidge was awoken by an alarm going off.

        It was her phone, the battery critically low. The screen was too bright and Pidge had to squint to see the message on it.

        Her limbs were still tied together, stiff from the cold, long night she’d spent in the computer chair.

        Her toes were frozen. Her mind numb. Heart heavy.

        This was the world were Shiro broke his promise and didn’t call.

        So many things ran through Pidge’s mind. So many fears.

        They weren’t all happy endings, she knew, and no matter what she’d told Allura, she didn’t know if she’d be able to change anything .

        Pidge locked her fingers behind her neck and tilted her head down as the phone went dark before blinking off and dying.

        It seemed like some grim reminder of something, or some horrible foreshadowing. Pidge couldn’t decide which.

        She told herself she wouldn’t cry.

        But it was hard.

        It was still dark outside the window. Not even seven in the morning.

        Pidge pulled herself off of the chair and pulled a large robe that obviously didn’t belong to her out of the closet. She wrapped it around herself, going into the kitchen.

        She heated some water on the stove, finding hot chocolate mix.

        Scoop. Pour. Spin. Repeat.

        When she looked up into the mirror above the sink, she looked horrible. Bags Santa himself would love to put presents in under her eyes, chapped lips, blotchy and pale face. Her hair a tangled rat’s nest.

        Pidge looked away, hating the image of who she was in the mirror.

        She sat at the table by the window, watching as the sun rose. The sky stretch pink and crimson and orange before pulling into a grey-blue. Clouds began to gather, casting a shadow over the city.

        Kaz didn’t come out for a while, but Pidge fixed some frozen chocolate-chip waffles with fried eggs and bacon for breakfast. He didn’t seem to know what was going on in Pidge’s mind. She smiled and talked with him, and he was happy.

        She was floating.

        Pidge just went with the flow throughout the day.

        They watched some old Christmas movies, much to the chargin to Kaz. But Pidge had suffered through one and had decided that movies had only gotten stupider over time.

        Then she helped Kaz with his required reading for school, before Kaz insisted that they make the pies for Christmas day. It’d been tradition to make the pies on Christmas Eve when Pidge was little too.

        Lunch consisted of calling in pizza from somewhere crappy that was still open and binging while waiting for the first pie to come out and watching A Christmas Carol. The muppet version, ‘cause honestly, why not?

        And Pidge needed something light hearted.

        Several hours and four pies later, Pidge leaned against the counter, glazed eyes looking at the cooling pies. The marble counter was cool against her forearms, lulling her into complacency.

        She could almost understand Shiro.

        This simple, quiet life was… overwhelming. After so much time- even if to her it’d only been a few months- of constant movement, training, fighting- this simple life where everything was quiet felt like it was choking her.

        She needed to be up, doing something. Hitting something, fighting something.

        She could almost understand Shiro.


        Time was weird.

        He’d left her and Kaz to deal with the aftermath of Pidge’s restlessness all on their own. He’d left Kaz to deal with the aftermath of Pidge’s dreams and the pain of all her other lifetimes and even if he didn’t know it wasn’t fair and it made Pidge angry. Unbelievably angry.

        Time was weird.

        Dreams were weird.

        Was she dreaming anymore? What was real? What was her life?

        She felt ages old.

        Kaz poked his head into the kitchen, a large yellowed book in his hand.

        “Mommy, when’s Daddy coming home?” he asked, coming up to her and tugging on her sleeve.

        Pidge blinked her eyes back into focus and looked down at him. “I’m… I’m not sure, Kaz,” she admitted. “To- Tomorrow, I’ll bet.” She sent Kaz a smile she hoped didn’t look as broken as it felt. “He probably thinks he’ll be the best Christmas present if he comes home Christmas day.”

        Kaz’s face lit up in a smile and he nodded, giving out a cheer. “Can we read the story now?” he questioned, holding up the book, which read The Night Before Christmas . “The sooner I go to bed, the sooner Daddy gets here!”

        Pidge nodded and Kaz pressed the book into Pidge’s hands before running off into the living room. Pidge followed close behind.

        Kaz pulled a large brown box out from behind the tree and opened it, pulling out three stockings. A red one with the name Kaz on the top, a dark green one for Pidge, and a purple one with Takeshi on it.

        He hopped over to Pidge and she helped him hang them up on their cardboard fireplace. Then they set the milk and cookies out. Once all was said and done, Pidge turned on the lights to the tree and the two of them curled up on the couch as Pidge read the book.

        “Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse,” she began, tickling Kaz’s side and making him laugh.

        Kaz curled up tighter into Pidge’s side, his hand folding into her shirt and a content smile on his face as his cheek rest on her chest. Occasionally he’d interrupt her to point out a particularly fascinating part of the picture, or to ask her what a word meant, but Pidge couldn’t find it in herself to get angry.

        As soon as Pidge had shut the book, Kaz jumped off the couch and pulled Pidge to his bedroom. Pidge chuckled as she tucked Kaz into bed.

        “Goodnight, Kaz,” she whispered, kissing his forehead.

        Kaz grinned. “Goodnight, Mommy,” he said. Then he closed his eyes and curled onto his side and into a tight little ball, obviously anxious for the next morning to come but still very much awake.

        Pidge chuckled again, running a hand through Kaz’s hair before standing.

        She went about the process of cleaning up a bit, setting dirty dinner dishes in the sink to be washed in the morning, when the phone attached to the wall began to ring noisily.

        Pidge rushed to the phone, picking up the receiver before the noise could wake the sleeping Kaz.


        “Am I speaking to Mrs. Katie Shirogane?” the rough voice on the other end demanded.

        Pidge gulped. “Yes, that’s me,” she said.

        “I’ve called to speak to you about your husband,” he claimed.

        Pidge could feel the blood run from her features. “What happened?” she demanded, holding the receiver even closer to her ear, using both hands.

        “Those at Fort Montagu were attacked on December the 23rd,” the man said, his voice monotone, as if he’d given this speech a thousand times before. Pidge’s mind whirled. Breathing wasn’t an option. “There has been an uncounted level of casualties and injuries as of yet. We are aware that your husband was due to return today?”

        “Ye- Yes,” Pidge claimed, struggling to force the words out.

        No. No, not Shiro, not Shiro, not Shiro-

        “As of yet, we have not found proof that he is here,” the man stated. “Dead or alive. However, if he has not returned yet, we can promise you that he will be returned to you tomorrow.”

        “Wha- What?” Pidge’s mouth was dry. Her throat was thick. Was she crying? She couldn’t tell.

        Time was weird.

        “What do you mean?”

        The man let out a heavy sigh. Pidge could hear his fingers drumming on the table. “Mrs. Shirogane, if your husband is alive he’ll come walking back to your side no later than midnight. If not, you’ll be collecting him in a body bag.”

        Pidge didn’t know when she dropped the phone, or if she’d hung it up.

        She didn’t know when the line had went dead.

        When she’d fallen against the wall and slid to the floor.

        When her breath had gotten caught in her throat.

        If she was crying or screaming.

        Time was weird.

        Dreams were weird.

        And Pidge was floating.

Chapter Text

        Waking up, the heaviness in Pidge’s stomach mirrored the same heaviness of her head.

        After everything that had happened over the last few days… she wasn’t even sure she wanted to get out of bed. So even after Hunk’s strong arms unwrapped themselves from around her and the smell of cooking food wafted up from downstairs, Pidge didn’t move from the bed.

        Several moments later, Hunk slowly crept back into the room.

        “Katie?” he said, slowly sitting by Pidge’s side of the bed. He brushed hair out of her face. “Pidge? What’s wrong?”

        “Not feel’ good,” she mumbled, hiding her face in her pillow.

        Hunk’s hand stopped running through her hair, and Pidge immediately missed the movement. “If you’re sick, I’ll call in-”

        Pidge turned her face to glare at Hunk. “Han- Hana’ll be here, there’s no need for that,” she claimed. Hunk was still fretting despite the claim. He placed the back of his hand on Pidge’s forehead and began chewing on his lip.

        Hunk’s brows furrowed and Pidge could practically see the wires whirring in his head. She was- sort of- back to her usual prickly self, but Hunk was, whatever else was there, a worrier. And above all else, in this life he cared about Pidge more than anything.

        Pidge frowned at Hunk. “I’m fine.” She turned away. “Just… I wanna be alone.”

        There was silence for a few minutes, and Pidge had almost thought Hunk had left as she drifted to sleep. Then she felt a hand on her shoulder. “Sometimes the times you want to be left alone are the ones when you most need someone,” he murmured so softly, Pidge’s unconscious might not have have heard it. “I’ll be here when you need me.”

        Pidge was alone when she woke up, and she mostly hoped that Hunk had left to work like she’d asked, but also kinda hoped he didn’t because while Hana was great and the kids were lovely- Pidge needed a familiar face. Someone she knew, someone she-

        Well. That was another matter entirely.

        Pidge pushed up from the bed, wincing when she felt a kick in her stomach, straight to her bladder. She grumbled as she headed to the bathroom across the hall to indulge the children in her stomach.

        Once she’d finished with her business, she headed towards the stairs, intent on getting food. Preferably comfort food. Icecream. And donuts. Maybe together.

She paused outside an open bedroom door. Chloe and Cienna were inside.

        Both were dressed up in beautiful costumes. Probably some sort of ballerina thing with how Cienna was stretching by the bar across the one bare wall in the room and Chloe was dancing around in her ballet shoes.

        They chattered happily at one another, and Pidge smile a bit into the room. They’d have each other for the rest of their lives, whether they liked it or not. And they’d probably be grateful for it later.

        Pidge felt a pang in her at the thought of Kaz and Robyn.

        Kaz might not even have a father, let alone any other siblings to grow up next to. He’d be… miserable with Pidge alone. Pidge knew she could be hot headed and not the easiest person to deal with. And having to deal with that on his own?

        But Robyn, too. She had both of her parents, of course, but if Pidge ended up in that life… she wasn’t going to bring another child into a life on the run. It wasn’t right. It wasn’t fair to them. It was barely fair to Keith and Pidge themselves, let alone one or more children.

        Pidge stumbled a bit and leaned against the wall, the voices of Cienna and Chloe seeming hollow and distant as she thought, once again, about Keith’s lifetime.

        How they were all gone. All of them. Lance, Shiro, Matt, Hunk- who knew about Allura and Coran-

        At the thought of Hunk, the one closest to her, the one she could make sure was there and with her and alive , Pidge practically ran as much as she could with her waddle down the stairs.

        When she finally came down them, Hunk sat talking with Hana in the living room.

        Her breath caught in her throat, eyes locked on Hunk and seeing nothing else. Her heart wouldn’t calm down. Her eyes burned as tears pushed their way out of her tear ducts. Pidge pressed at them, trying to stop them. It only succeeded in making her sob harder.

        Then there were arms around her. Hunk’s , Pidge mindlessly thought, as she held onto his shirt in one hand and wrapped the other arm around him.

        Tears came relentlessly and Pidge berated herself inwardly for being such a crybaby over the last few days. They were in the middle of a war. People died all the time in war.

        But this isn’t the middle of the war; this is the time after.

        Pidge wasn’t sure how she’d ended up on the couch in Hunk’s arms, but Hana was soon excusing herself with an “Excuse me, Mr. Garret, Mrs. Garret.”

        Hunk ran soft, gentle fingers through her hair and she leaned into the touch as her tears slowly dried out.

        “What’s wrong?” Hunk asked, his voice gentle.

        Pidge sniffled, not meeting his gaze. “I- It’s nothing,” she mumbled. “There’s just… a lot going on in my head right now. I don’t even know if it’s real.”

        Hunk paused before kissing the top of Pidge’s head. “Just because it’s happening in your head doesn’t mean it isn’t real,” he claimed.

        Pidge wasn’t sure anymore.

        Hana ended up taking the kids to the park to give Hunk and Pidge some alone time. Pidge spent some time on the couch with him, just sitting there.

        They didn’t really talk, just… sat there. Enjoying his company. His presence. Calming herself down knowing that he was there .

        With him playing with her hair, Pidge ended up falling asleep, and freaked out when she woke up and Hunk wasn’t there. Her hyperventilating caused Hunk to run back in from the kitchen from making dinner to calm her down.

        “I’m sorry. I’m sorry, I’m such a mess, I’m sorry,” Pidge said, holding her arms as she shook. Hunk shushed her and pulled her close.

        “No, no, don’t apologize,” he whispered. “It’s okay. You’re okay. Don’t apologize for this.”

        Pidge cracked a bit of a broken smile. “Why didn’t you go into work today?” she asked. “I told you I’d be okay.

        Hunk coughed bashfully and turned away and whistled. “I, um, well I was feeling a bit under the weather myself,” he teased.

        Pidge poked his chest before curling up against him awkwardly. She was pretty tired of the baby belly as it hindered her getting closer and getting the human connection she needed at that moment.

        “I’m glad you didn’t go,” she admitted quietly.

        Hunk pulled her close and lightly kissed her forehead, silently letting her know he agreed. “I will always be here for you,” he promised.

        Hana brought the kids back just as Hunk was setting the table. Theo wiggled in his seat happily while Cienna went on happily about how she and Jace and Theo had chased after some geese. Chloe and Opal had gone and made some chalk drawings on the sidewalk with Hana.

        It was a nice distraction, the conversation. It took Pidge’s mind off the awful things that had happened.

        But as the night drew long, Pidge dreaded falling asleep and waking up in the next lifetime. Who would it be next? Keith? Allura? Lance?

        God, Pidge hoped it was Lance. Just because she needed something happy. She needed something- someone- like Lance for a while. Not that she wanted his life, she didn’t know whose she wanted, but it was more she needed to experience that lifetime, to get away from all the others.

        Hunk gave Pidge a concerned look once they were done getting ready for bed.

        “Are you sure you’re okay?” he asked.

        Pidge hesitated before nodding. “Yeah, I’m fine,” she claimed.

        When they laid down that night, Pidge’s eyes refused to close. Her mind refused to settle and go to sleep. Even long after Hunk had gone to sleep and was snoring.

        But, eventually, the world faded to black before her.

Chapter Text

        Before Pidge had even opened her eyes, she knew that she was not a lucky girl. She could feel the overwhelming warmth that surrounded her, and the small body pressed against her chest.

        It was the same life that had weighed entirely too heavy on her chest for the last few… days , were the easiest way to say it.

        Sure enough, when Pidge cracked open her eyes, Keith was lying asleep with his arms curled around Robyn and Pidge. He looked as Pidge had always known him; tense, with thoughts on his mind he likely wouldn’t share with anyone.

        Pidge pulled away and Keith’s arms fell to curl tightly around Robyn. Pidge shook her head as she made her way out of the room.

        Standing in the kitchen, something caught her eye from out of the window and she curiously made her way out to the porch to get a better look.

        She fell to the ground at the sight of what she saw.

        When Keith finally woke up and came looking, Pidge was still there. But now she was drawing aimlessly in the dirt with a stick.

        Keith sighed heavily and sat down by her.

        Pidge curled her knees under her chin, eyes never leaving the wooden planks made like tombstones. Each held a crudely carved up name and date.

        Lance McClain. Hunk Gunderson. Matthew Holt. Takeshi Shirogane. Allura. Coran. Even Lotor.

        Pidge’s body was worn out from crying, and she really couldn’t anymore, but she almost wished she could.

        They couldn’t have the real bodies, obviously not. But a memorial was that they had to make do with.

        “I’m sorry.” Keith gripped his head, pulling at his hair and looking paler than he had ever before. He doubled over as if to hide. “I’m sorry,” he mumbled. “I’m sorry, it’s my fault-”

        “Stop that,” Pidge hissed. She didn’t want to hear it. She didn’t. It would only cause her more trouble. It would only hurt.

        “But it’s my fault. If only I hadn’t been such an idiot, if only I hadn’t gone into that battle, Lance wouldn’t have followed me, and Hunk wouldn’t have followed him! We wouldn’t have left the castle defenceless and allowed everyone else to die!” Keith shouted, making Pidge shake.

        “Just shut it!” Pidge snapped, angry now. She turned to Keith with fury in her features. “What’s done is done! Yes, it hurts! Yes, it’s painful! But you certainly can’t be the only one who could put the blame on themselves! If I’d been stronger, if I’d not been so proud, if I’d been able to stop them! But what ifs aren’t going to bring them back!”

        She was shaking, but she couldn’t cry.

        She didn’t want to cry. She wanted to hit something. Mostly Keith. She really wanted to hit Keith. But not This Keith. This Keith was a Future Keith that Pidge didn’t know a thing about besides the fact he blamed himself for their team dying and it sounded like for good reason.

        No, she wanted to hit Her Keith. The Past Keith, or Present Keith, whichever it really was. She wanted to hit him and tell him not to be an idiot and to stop him from doing anything that could result in the group just… dying .

        But she couldn’t do that, so she instead lashed out at This Keith, the one beside her. He yelped as her fist connected with his boney shoulder.

        “Let’s go in,” Pidge said, standing. She looked out into the distance, and only saw a line to seperate the land from the sky.

        She turned away and walked back into the house.

        Pidge felt mildly better after the screaming match and punching Keith and after food. Not to say she was back to normal.

        But the pure quiet, save for Keith singing softly to Robyn in the next room, gave her time to think. She looked back on the last few days and analyzed them, notebook and pen in hand. There was a lot going on, and she needed to get her thoughts straight.

        Each life had something good, the pros. But there was also the cons. Pidge hadn’t figured out any really good, “Let’s stay here!” pros for Keith’s life, and there wasn’t really anything, besides the massive amount of kids, to deter her from Hunk’s life. But there was something in every life. She was sure whatever was gonna happen would on the third day.

        She also wanted to know what the heck the doctor from Lance’s wanted. Because it was obviously urgent. And dammit, that was probably the freakin’ thing in his life. Who was driving the car if it wasn’t Pidge? She needed to know that too. Was it Matt?

        Pidge paled at the thought, then remembered the sliver of a detail that Lance mentioned: “We can invite them over this weekend if you want? Matt too, if you like.”

        So, it wasn’t Matt. There was still a lot of possibilities. She didn’t like any of them.

        Allura’s life seemed like the most peaceful now that she knew about Charles- she wasn’t sure there was much else that could be thrown at her there.

        And then Shiro’s… where he was gone… where he might be dead…

        Life was shit. She had to make a choice eventually. But she wanted to make it different, so it didn’t turn out like how she was currently living.

        For each life, she made a plan, detailing everything that was not particularly ideal, and everything she might be able to do to change it.

        She tapped the pen to her chin as she looked at the pages. It was undoubtedly that the consequences of changing things would be… unthinkable. Might not be bad, might not be good. But she didn’t know what would happen if she changed it.

        Pidge slowed in her movements at the thought that the future was something set in place. Unchangeable. Unmoveable.

        But she shook the thought away.

        She would change it.

        She had to.

        “What’re you up to?” Keith asked, sitting next to Pidge with a steaming cup of coffee. She couldn’t understand how he could stand the drink. She was practically naked- and had she been living alone in this kind of place, she probably would have been- with her thinnest tanktop and shorts, but he wore jeans and his fingerless gloves and was drinking coffee of all things.

        “Nothing,” Pidge said with a sigh, closing the notebook. She didn’t really need him thinking she was crazy, on top of over emotional. She looked out the window before looking over to Keith. “I want to do something menial and mind numbing.”

        “Poker?” Keith suggested.

        Pidge shrugged. “Poker,” she agreed.

        Keith put on an extremely old record in place of radio as background noise after Robyn woke up. The three sat on the cool wood floor, the coffee table and couch and chairs pushed to all sides of the room so they could stretch out.

        They played a few rounds of poker (Pidge complaining that it couldn’t be strip poker with a child in the house- it was still too hot), then slapjack, pinochle, and eventually on go fish. Pidge had lost at every game.

        She threw her cards down in an exasperated irritation while Robyn laughed and Keith blew a raspberry into her stomach. “Who’s my little good luck charm?” he said, tickling her belly. Robyn laughed again and grabbed his cheeks.

        Pidge whined as she beat at the ground. “It’s not faaaiiir ,” she complained. “You keep winning! Stop that!”

        Keith chuckled, smiling a bit at her. “Maybe you just shouldn’t be so bad at cards,” he suggested teasingly.

        Pidge stuck her tongue out like a child and Keith followed. They stared at each other. Then they broke out in laughter.

        Pidge stretched her arms out, leaning her elbows on the floor and supporting her chin with her hands while kicking up her legs behind her.

        This… This isn’t too bad.

        The sky grew dark and after they’d finished dinner, Pidge laid Robyn down to bed. She watched from the bedroom door as Keith stalked out of the front door, and a moment later she heard a thump on the roof.

        After making sure that Robyn wasn’t going to make a fuss, Pidge left the room. She went out onto the porch and craned her neck to look for Keith, but couldn’t see him from her position.

        Pidge grunted as she pulled herself onto the railing, then grit her teeth as she grabbed the edge of the roof. She pulled herself up onto the tiles, now seeing Keith a bit of a ways up, smoking a cigarette and looking up at the sky.

        Pidge stood and slowly made her way over to him, situating herself at his side.

        She curled her knees up to her chest while Keith laid flat on his back. Both looked up to the millions of stars above them. They’d been surrounded by stars for so long, it seemed a bit rather odd to have to actually look up to see them. The novelty didn’t seem to have worn off yet, though. Something Pidge was glad for.

        She slowly stretched out by Keith, folding her hands under her head and crossing her ankles.

        There were a few constellations she’d grown to love while up on the castle, but none of them could be seen from Earth. The only one she could make out among the clusters was Orion.

        Pidge bit her lip, then looked over to Keith for just a moment. She turned back to the stars.

        “Do you ever… think about what if things had been different?” she asked. “Not- Not the ‘what ifs’ with us being stronger or more reliable or anything, but… yeah.” Pidge felt like smacking her head for the utterly lame ending.

        “Are you an idiot?”

        Pidge’s face went red with anger. “Yeah, fine, stupid question-” she grumbled.

        “All the time.”

        Pidge looked over to Keith. He met her eyes, and Pidge could see a sadness in them that she knew she should have known, but the concept was completely foreign to her. Keith held up the carton of cigarettes.

        “I know you haven’t in a while, but…”

        Pidge took the offered deathstick. “What the hell, right?”

        Eventually, the two ended up curled together as the night took on a chill, then headed back downstairs when it got too much.

        It’d been a mind numbing day. Just like she needed.

        And she fell asleep much more easily than she had in awhile.

Chapter Text

        Tumbling, tumbling, tumbling.

        Falling, falling, falling.

        Pidge was falling through a sky full of stars.

        There was her room on the castle, someone in the distance asked what Hunk was making for breakfast. And then she was falling again.

        Pidge woke with a jerk, the breath knocked out of her.

        She heard a groan come from behind her and Pidge groaned as she herself turned around. It was minorly difficult with both Nico and Mattie jumping on her and Lance.

        “Uncle Matt’s coming, Uncle Matt’s coming!” Mattie exclaimed, jumping on Lance and smacking his back. “Get up, get up, get up!”

        Pidge smiled at the scene while Nico curled up again Pidge’s chest. “Mattie’s loud,” he complained, yawning. “‘M tired.”

        Pidge ruffled Nico’s hair. “He’s just excited,” Pidge said, even as Mattie rolled off the bed and began pulling Lance’s arm.

        Mattie groaned and pulled on Lance’s arm as Lance winked at Pidge, making it purposefully difficult to move him. “Cooooomee ooooooon!” Mattie whined. “Get up, get up, get up!”

        In one swift movement, Lance had sat up and scooped Mattie up in his arms, laying him across his lap and tickling his stomach. Mattie squealed and laughed.

        “Wouldn’t Grandma and Grandpa be sad if they heard you weren’t excited about them coming too?” Lance teased, making Mattie sit up quickly and almost bonk heads with him.

        “But I am!” he exclaimed, his eyes wide with the fear that he’d end up making his grandparents sad.

        Lance laughed, setting Mattie back on the ground. “I’m sure they’ll be very happy, then,” he claimed. “Why don’t you two go get dressed so Mama and I can get ready too?”

        “Okay! Come on, Nico!” Mattie pulled on Nico’s hand, and the boy moved just as easily as Lance had. Nico curled even tighter against Pidge. Mattie groaned loudly. “Nicooooo, come oooon! I wanna see Uncle Matt!” He froze for a moment and looked to Lance. “And Grandma and Grandpa!”

        Pidge smoothed back Nico’s hair. “Go get dressed,” she said. “I’ll still be here.”

        Nico gave Pidge a disbelieving look, but slowly climbed off the bed and allowed Mattie to drag him off. Pidge grinned as they left the room, the door slamming behind them. Lance turned to Pidge and held out his hand.

        “Let’s get ready,” he said.

        And Pidge took it.

        Breakfast was made, dishes were done, and everyone was dressed.

        Mattie and Nico were playing around in the living room, all geared up like the characters on Legendary Defenders . Pidge sat on the couch, watching them with a mild look. Nico would look over to her every so often, just to make sure she was still there.

        Pidge stayed put.

        A knock came from the front door, and Lance came from the hall to answer it. Pidge stood up while Mattie squealed excitedly.

        “Uncle Matt! Grandpa, Grandma!” he shouted, running past Lance and out the front door. Nico came and tugged at Pidge’s shirt. Pidge ran a hand through his hair with a soft smile as Lance moved out of the way.

        Matt, Sam, and Colleen stood in the doorway, and Pidge’s heart melted. Matt moved past Lance, picking Pidge up in a bone crushing hug. Pidge hugged him back, feeling like crying.

        He was alive, and safe, and back on Earth. And that was almost enough of a definite that Pidge was ready to chose this without any consideration for the others.

        Both her parents and Matt looked older, of course they were , and had many more lines of worry and life than she knew them to. But when Pidge pulled away, Matt was smiling.

        “I was so worried about you,” he claimed, hugging her again, tighter this time. “When Lance called about the wreck, I tried to come right away, but… well.” He turned towards their parents. “I couldn’t very well leave them all behind, could I?”

        Lance came and put a hand on Matt’s shoulder. “Thanks for coming, man,” he said. “It’s been… Well, maybe we should talk in the dining room.”

        Nico pulled away from Pidge’s side and nudged over to Matt. He pulled on Matt’s sleeve and Matt knelt down so they were face to face. He looked between Pidge and Lance before moving as if to tell Matt a secret.

        “Mama doesn’t remember,” Nico said, though loud enough the others could hear it. “She doesn’t act like it, but she doesn’t remember.”

        Matt’s jaw slackened and he looked to to Pidge. “Pidge… You really…?”

        Pidge nodded slowly. “Twelves years,” she said. “Just… gone. Um, Dr.- Dr. Ro claims they’ll come back soon? Just- I don’t have them right now.”

        Matt stood, ruffling Nico’s hair as he did so. He looked sad. “Pidge, I’m sorry,” he claimed.

        Pidge frowned. “It’s not your fault,” she argued. “You’ve got nothing to be sorry about.”

        “Let’s go into the dining room,” Lance said a little more forcefully, though not angry. Matt nodded.

        “Why don’t you boys come inside?” he called out the front door.

        “Coming!” Mattie called.

        He ran into the house, and Pidge had to do a double take. Right behind him was- Alfor. Well, if he was in the lifetime, he likely wasn’t Alfor, but probably called something else. He just… looked so similar. He was the same child, she had to remember.

        Just in a lifetime where Pidge didn’t chose him.

        He grinned up at Pidge. “Hey Aunt Katie!” he claimed, following after Mattie up the stairs. Nico looked conflicted between following the boys and staying with Pidge. Lance led the others to the dining room.

        Pidge nudged him towards the stairs. “Maybe we can play later,” she suggested.

        Nico bit his lip, then he turned and began to run up the stairs. “Mattie! Alex! Wait up!”

        Pidge shook her head and turned to go into the dining room with the others. She froze, her hand on the handle, when she heard shouting coming from the other side.

        “It’s not anyone’s fault!” Matt shouted. “All it took was a split second, and everything went downhill. There’s nothing you could have done-”

        “I could have done anything else!” Lance shouted. “ I was the one driving. So it is my fault.”

        “Why didn’t you tell me?” Pidge questioned as she pushed in the door. The others turned towards her. “ Why didn’t you tell me, Lance?” she demanded, this time louder and close to shouting.

        Lance looked like a kicked puppy. “Pidge, I…”

        He voice trailed off. Pidge’s hands clenched into fists. Her cheeks felt hot in anger.

        “Don’t you think that that’s something I might like to know?” she questioned. “Something that might be nice to be told?” Lance could only stare. Pidge glared. “I don’t- I don’t care that you were driving,” she seethed. “But I would have liked to have been told, instead of you hiding it.” She turned away, her hands slowly falling open. “Dr. Ro called last night. We have to be at the hospital by noon.”

        Pidge left the room, things not quite as easy or smooth or happy as they’d been before.



        Was she floating or falling? Falling or floating?

        She was walking down the sidewalk to the car.

        No, she was sinking deep in water, breath caught in her neck. Which way was up?



        Maybe it was both.

        The ride to the hospital was generally silent. Lance had tried to turn on the radio, but halfway through the first commercial Pidge had turned it off.

        So they sat in silence.

        Lance tapped his fingers on the steering wheel as they pulled up at a stoplight. They watched as the cars zoomed past.

        “I meant to tell you,” he muttered, his voice quiet.

        “Then why didn’t you?” Pidge demanded.

        Lance seemed to freeze; at least, slow down. It was as if time itself had stopped going quite so fast. Lance looked over at Pidge. Gripped the steering wheel. He didn’t speak again until the light had turned green.

        “There was already so much going on,” he mumbled, almost inaudible. “I didn’t… I didn’t want to burden you anymore. You’re a mother, you’re married to me. I didn’t want you to have the wreck on your mind. I didn’t want this to happen. The arguing, the tenseness, the fighting. I just… it was horrible of me to think, even for a second, but I thought maybe this would be the chance to fix everything.”

        “Lance, what are you talking about?”

        Lance was quiet. They pulled onto a new street. “We were fighting,” he explained softly. “Before… Before the wreck.” He let out a forced laugh, though it sounded more like he wanted to cry. “About anything and everything, it seemed. Not in front of Mattie and Nico, never , but… we were having troubles. Trying to work through them but I guess we just kept butting heads.” Lance looked over at her and she met his eye. “I’m still very much in love with you, Katie McClain. From the moment you agreed to be mine and to take me as your own, I vowed there wouldn’t be any other and there’s not, and there never will be.”

        Pidge gave Lance a look and said “How you worded that is not very convincing.”

        Lance’s eyes went wide and laughter bubbled up in his chest. He hit his head on the steering wheel, still laughing.

        “Lance, you’re going to get us in a wreck! Again!” Pidge exclaimed as several cars swerved around them.

        Finally, Lance sat back up. “Damn it, Pidge, I was trying to have a serious moment,” he complained. “And you just up and ruined it!”

        “I’m good at that.” Pidge folded her arms and smirked as they pulled into the hospital’s parking lot.

        “Why did Dr. Ro want you to come in today anyway?” Lance asked as they climbed out of the car. Pidge froze with her hand on the doorway.

        What were her words? What did she say? Dammit, it was a few days ago and I can barely remember what I had for breakfast- wait, did I even eat breakfast? Focus, Pidge!

        “Something’s up with the scans,” Pidge said, her eyebrows scrunched as she tried to remember. “She said… they needed more to make sure it was nothing.”

        Pidge took a deep breath before looking over to Lance over the top of the car.

        “You wanted serious? I think we’re about to get it.”

        The visit was, in a word, long .

        When they arrived, Dr. Ro ordered various scans of Pidge’s head. It seemed that they’d barely finished with one before they were ushered off to do another.

        Pidge and Lance both breathed a sigh of relief when they were finally brought to the room Dr. Ro would be speaking with them in. They could finally sit down and not have to worry about all the head scans.

        Lance took Pidge’s hand as the nurse left and they waited for Dr. Ro.

        “You okay?” Lance asked.

        “Yeah,” Pidge replied.

        Silence followed.

        The door creaked open some time later when Dr. Ro pushed it it. She carried her cane, a clipboard, and the printed out head scans.

        Her features were grim. Pidge didn’t like the look.

        With a heavy sigh, Dr. Ro slowly lowered herself into the chair across from Lance and Pidge. She set her cane aside.

        “I’m afraid I have some very bad news,” she explained. She looked down to the scans of Pidge’s brain before holding them out. Neither Lance or Pidge moved. Pidge’s hands were shaking too much.

        Finally, Lance took them. Both looked at the images. Lance’s brows furrowed.

        “What… do these mean?” he questioned.

        Dr. Ro took the images back from Lance and clipped them to a screen, flipping a light on and making the dark ink illuminate. She circled a portion of one of the pictures.

        “This is where your memories are stored in your brain,” Dr. Ro explained. “However, part of yours was…”

        Pidge stopped thinking. Sounds were distant as Dr. Ro explained how the memory lobe in her brain had been damaged and she’d never retrieve her lost memories .

        She wouldn’t be hindered from making new ones, but the ones she had were just… gone .

        And she’d thought she just didn’t know because she wasn’t in this lifetime yet. She hadn’t experienced those things, which was why she didn’t know.

        But… Pidge felt sick to her stomach discovering that wasn’t the case.

        It was dark by the time they left the hospital.

        Dinner was spent with Pidge watching from what felt like behind a sheet of glass as her brother and parents (and nephew, she couldn’t forget about Alfor - Alex ) interacted with her children. Lance would respond when spoken to, but he more often than not looked in Pidge’s direction.

        “I don’t want to tell them yet,” Pidge had told Lance as they were driving home.”I don’t want to ruin this.”

        But now she felt suffocated by a bubble, and felt like she was still ruining it. This was her family . People she supposedly hadn’t seen in a while. People who undoubtedly loved her.

        It’s only for another day.

        Pidge looked up from her food, the noise and conversation falling on deaf ears.

        Today’s the last I’m here.

        Pidge was the first into bed that night, having sped through her routine and under the covers. Lance clicked the lamp off and crawled in as well.

        Pidge grabbed his hand, before letting it go and snuggling into his arms.

        “You okay?” Lance asked softly, worriedly.

        Pidge closed her eyes tight. “I just don’t want to let this go.”

        Lance wrapped his arms around her. “Me too, Pidge. Me too.”

        Pidge was falling, Floating, maybe.

        She held Lance tighter. And like that, they fell asleep.

Chapter Text

        Pidge woke up next to Hunk, and was seriously thinking of just… not getting out of bed again. But then Hunk would be worried, and he’d stay home again, and while it would be nice as it was her last day with him, it wasn’t exactly fair. She had kids to spend time with, too.

        And she didn’t think that she’d be able to deal with Hunk being a helicopter husband.

        No. Just… no .

        So in the end, Pidge ended up getting out of bed when the call of food came. Hunk insisted on helping her down the stairs no matter how much complaining she did, but that was fine. Because he was going to work and Hana was coming later and everything would soon go back to normal and maybe if she distanced herself from Hunk it wouldn’t hurt so much if she didn’t chose him.

        She also felt that since some seriously wrong had gone on in every other lifetime something was bound to go wrong in this one and she didn’t really want that to have something to do with Hunk.

        Get him out of the equation and it’d be fine. Right?

        Breakfast was finished and Hunk left with a kiss to Pidge’s head and the kids drifted off to play and only a couple hours later Hana came.

        Pidge flipped through a photo album as Hana cleaned up around the house. Hana chattered as she did so, but Pidge wasn’t listening.

        The book Pidge had grabbed had several pictures of her in her previous pregnancies and printed ultrasounds. Pidge had indeed only gotten bigger. Of course… Twins, triplet, quadruplets. It was going to happen. Pidge also had never really been that tall to begin with…

        The twins were just the cutest when they were babies, and even then you couldn’t really tell their gender well.

        The album had no real order to it- which obviously something would have to be done about- and there were pictures of Pidge and Hunk’s wedding day mixed in with the baby pictures.

        In those pictures, Pidge looked happier than she’d ever been.

        “Oooo, pretty!” Pidge jumped at the sound of Chloe- or was it Cienna?- right by her ear. It seemed to be both when Pidge turned around.

        “Can we look at pictures too?” the other asked. Pidge smiled a bit and nodded. Each twin took to one of Pidge’s sides and she flipped to the back of the book.

        They cooed at the baby pictures of the triplets, and Chloe said “See! I’ve always been the prettier twin, Cienna!” when they saw their own.

        To which Cienna replied “We’re identical, Chloe.”

        They giggled ridiculously and insisted on analyzing every detail of the wedding pictures. Time seemed to fly by with them, and Pidge didn’t complain.

        “Hey, I’m gonna go get some sandwiches from the store for lunch. You partial to anything, Mrs. Garrett?” Hana asked.

        Pidge waved her off. “No, I’m fine with whatever,” she claimed.

        Hana grinned brightly and nodded, pulling her purse over her shoulder. “Alright then! I’ll be back soon!” She turned to the triplets. “Be nice to your Mommy, alright?” she ordered. “Don’t get her all stressed.”

        “We won’t!” they all three cheered.

        “Hurry back with food,” Chloe moaned. “I’m hungry .”

        “You’re always hungry,” Cienna said.

        Which made Chloe start chasing Cienna around the room. Hana laughed, giving Pidge one last wave before disappearing out the door.

        For some moments, they all waited around for Hana to return. Then Chloe headed upstairs with Theo and Opal. Cienna began looking through a book while Jace stared at the door for several more minutes.

        Then he got off the floor and toddled over to Pidge. He pulled at Pidge’s clothes.

        “Mommy, I wanna color,” he said.

        “That’s fine,” she told him.

        He pointed up to the shelf. “Crayons up there, Mommy,” he whined. Pidge looked up to see the crayons very much out of his reached. Probably a good thing.

        “Jace, Daddy said Mommy can’t be climbing on stuff so you’ve gotta wait for Hana to come back if you wanna color,” Cienna said sternly. “Just go do something else for now.”

        Jace pouted and stomped his foot. “But I wanna color!” he shouted. “Mommy said I could color!”

        “Just wait for Hana to come back-”

        “I wanna color now !”

        Pidge grunt as she pulled herself to her feet. “I’m not incapable of grabbing some crayons, Cienna,” Pidge stated. “Just grab me a step stool, won’t you?”

        Cienna gave Pidge a disbelieving look. Then she sighed heavily and made her way to the hallway, coming back with a stepstool. Jace was jumping around and cheering.

        She situated it and Pidge began climbing.

        “Jace, please stopping jumping around, you’ll make me fall,” Pidge said. Jace didn’t listen so well and Pidge huffed as she reached for the crayons. Jace jumped and bumped into her.

        And then Pidge was suspended in air.


        The world was spinning. Pidge was on the ground. Black tinged the edge of her vision.


        Cienna? Jace? One of the others?

        “Oh my god, Mrs. Garrett!”

        That was definitely Hana…

        “Mrs. Garrett, an ambulance is coming. You’ve gotta keep your eyes open- Mrs. Garrett!”

        Everything went black.

        “What happened to her?!”

        “She- I- I don’t know! I only stepped out for a minute-”

        “This woman is eight months pregnant with multiple children! She needs constant supervision-”

        “Daddy, is Mommy gonna be okay?”

        “She’s- She’s gonna be fine, sweetheart.”

        “We’re losing the babies. We need to get them out now .”

        “Pidge, please . Please wake up. Katie, you promised . You promised you’d tell me so.”

        I know, I know, I know. I want to wake up. But it’s too dark. I’m trying.

        The darkness overtook Pidge for the final time.

Chapter Text

        Pidge woke in a panic. She wasn’t in a hospital bed or room like she thought it was. She was in a new timeline. A new day.

        She sat up slowly, shaking, and looked around the room. It was Allura’s. She was with Allura. She was on Allura’s last day. She’d just experienced Hunk’s- and oh god, what if-

        Pidge blanched.

        Allura came out of the adjacent bathroom, turning on the lights to dim as she did so. She smiled sweetly. “Good morning,” she said. But her expression fell when she saw Pidge’s face. “Pidge, are you alright?”

        Pidge’s mouth felt dry. She tried to swallow, to gulp air down, but it choked her.

        “I- I think I might have died…”

        Pidge didn’t want to think about it, and was actively thinking about anything but that fact she kinda-maybe died in Hunk’s lifetime and that was hell . Mostly because no matter what she thought about, her subconscious was completely stuck on it.

        Sure, some of the others were bad. Keith had everyone else dead, Shiro had not knowing if he was alive. Allura had a dead kid and a disaster of another one as a result.

        But all in all, they’d mostly been good. Pidge’s life looked okay at least.

        At least she hadn’t died .

        It made breakfast a solemn affair. Especially after Cera and Alfor went off to school and Allura got called to check up on her case.

        And Pidge was left alone.

        Not the best thing to do, especially in her current mental state. But she shooed Allura away, and went up to the workshop and worked on anything and everything, not staying at one project for long. Going to a new only to come back to the one before a few minutes later.

        At some point in time, someone had brought up some food, but it went mostly untouched until it grew cold. Pidge only marginally picked at it while she worked.

        Sometime afterwards, the sound of a ringing phone brought Pidge out of the workshop and downstairs.


        “Pidge?” Pidge made a noise of affirmation and Allura breathed a breath of relief. “I’m sorry, Pidge, but I’ll be staying late tonight,” she apologized. “It’s your last night, and I hate leaving you alone, but I’m sure I’ll be back sometime around dinner.”

        Pidge sighed, reaching up and pulling at the roots of her hair. “I’m- I’m fine,” she claimed. “Don’t worry about it.”

        Allura hummed disbelievingly. “I promise I’ll be home before you go to bed tonight,” she stated. “The children should be home soon- Oh! I’m coming! Sorry, Pidge, but I have to go.”

        “Yeah. Go do your job, Princess,” Pidge said dryly.

        “I love you! I’ll see you tonight!”

        The line went dead but Pidge still held the phone to her ear. Her eyes had gone wide, her jaw dropped, and her cheeks were turning fairly pink.

        It had been such an easy phrase for Allura to spew out as she hung up the phone, and it set Pidge off balance.

        Slowly, Pidge hung the phone up. When she went to hold a hand over her mouth, she could feel the heat from her cheeks in her fingertips.

        Well, at least it gave her something else to think about.

        Pidge was back up in the workshop when Alfor and Cera came home, making a new design.

        Cera had changed out of her school uniform and into overalls and a bright pink t-shirt, her hair up in high pigtails, and skipped right past Pidge with barely a “Hey, Mum!”  to one of the projects Pidge had been working on all day.

        Alfor was slower. He looked sullen; his face deep in thought. His movements were sluggish as he moved around. When Pidge got a good look at his face, his eyes were rimmed red.

        Pidge finally set down her papers and stuck the marker behind her ear as she walked over to Alfor. She stood across the table from him.

        “What’s wrong?” she asked, not unkindly but with a force that demanded an answer.

        Alfor looked down, refusing to meet Pidge’s eyes. She looked down as well, patient as she fiddled with a screwdriver. Alfor gulped, then he hiccuped. He shook in place, dropping the bolts he’d been handling onto the table with a clatter.

        Cera looked up from her own project as Pidge bolted around the table, holding onto Alfor tightly. Hot tears stained Pidge’s shirt as he shook in her arms. He held onto her shirt like a little kid, and though he was almost as tall as Pidge, she had to remember that he was still a ten year old boy.

        Pidge laid her head on top of Alfor’s, rubbing his back while he cried himself out.

        Finally, he sniffled and pulled back a bit. Pidge’s hold didn’t let him go far. He looked up at Pidge. His eyes were red and puffy, and he looked like he could cry again at any minute. He also had some snot running out of his nose, but that was a problem for another moment.

        “What happened?” Pidge asked softly.

        “They- They said we couldn’t be a real family,” Alfor said brokenly, his voice cracking on each word. “Be- Because we- we’re hu-human and- and- and Mother’s not . They- They said that- that ‘cause we’re adopted we’re not your real- real kids and- and we’d never- never be a real family.”

        Pidge’s mind whirled with varying degrees of emotions. Rage at those who had dared say that to her child, pity and sympathy for Alfor for believing, and also astonishment for it. And also self contempt for having not done more so he wouldn’t feel that way.

        Pidge wiped Alfor’s tears away before kissing his forehead. “You know, I think being adopted is the greatest thing,” she said, tilting her head and grinning. “Because that mean you were wanted . Likely, whoever told you those things just found out they were an accident. Probably born on the freeway, too. I hear that’s where most of them happen.”

        Alfor giggled, making Pidge grin even more. She pulled the pen from behind her ear and uncapped it. Then, in two quick movement, she drew two marks right under Alfor’s eyes, just like Allura’s in blue marker.

        Alfor stared in awe at Pidge as she turned to Cera.

        “Hery, Cera, get over here!”

        Cera let out a shriek and gleefully ran over. Pidge marked her up as well with a nearby red marker, before taking the green one and using it on herself. Alfor looked between the two of them, reaching up to the marks on his face.

        Pidge smirked, folding her arms. “They’ve got nothing to say now,” she claimed. “None of us are human now.”

        Cera and Alfor shared a smile, both of their eyes shining bright. And Pidge felt like she’d finally done something right.

        Allura’s absence was duly noted at dinner, but none of them dwelt on it for too long.

        They all headed up to bed later than usual while waiting up for her. Alfor bounded up to Pidge as she got off the stairs, dressed in baggy pajama pants and a several sizes too big grey tee-shirt.

        He hugged her tightly without warning. Then he kissed her cheek. “I’m glad you got to know me, even if you don’t choose this,” he whispered, before skipped away before Pidge knew what was happening.

        She made her way to the bedroom in a haze.

        She busied herself in the bedroom; turning the blankets down, taking her damn sweet time getting her night clothes on, actually brushing out her hair like her mother had told her it was good to do before bed.

        She was just climbing onto the bed when the door practically flew open (except that Allura was far too graceful for that) and Allura rushed into the room. A couple hairs were out of place, but her worried expression melted off as soon as she saw that Pidge was still awake.

        She smiled, setting her things down before walking to Pidge’s side. Allura sat down and entwined her fingers with Pidge’s.

        “I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to see you off,” she murmured.

        Pidge snorted a bit, smiling just a tad. “Nah. I was gonna wait up anyway. Stay with me ‘til I fall asleep? I’ve only got Shiro and Keith left, so those are gonna be trying…”

        Allura smiled. “Of course, Katie.”

        When they laid down finally, Pidge was still holding onto Allura’s hand. She looked at Allura’s peaceful face until her eyes grew too heavy to stay open.

        She’d just like her name. Alluring…

Chapter Text

        Once again, Pidge was free falling.

        It’s not black. It’s not a sky full of stars. It’s… grey. The kind of color you see in your peripheral vision when the colors fade out. The half asleep kind of look because of not being fully awake and processing things when you first wake up.

        The scent of something vaguely cinnamony assaults her nose.

        When Pidge blinked open her eyes, the imprint of piles of things she can’t rightly remember float in front of her until she blinks several time to make the image go away. The cinnamon is gone.

        Pidge sat up. She’s in Keith’s lifetime.

        Great. Leaves me to deal with the emotional wreck of a life that’s Shiro’s.

        Pidge ran a hand through her hair as she climbed out of the bed. It wasn’t quite light out yet. Through the blinds, Pidge could still see Orion shooting his bow into the distance.

        Pidge exited the room and made her way out to the porch, where Keith stood smoking a cigarette. It was vaguely reminiscent of her first day in his lifetime, and Pidge couldn’t help but crack a dry smile.

        This time, Pidge went over to him and leaned against him, her head on his shoulder. He reached over and entwined his hand with hers on the rail.

        Pidge seriously thought about going to kick Keith’s butt for him being an emotional disaster when she woke up. But for now, they were perfectly fine.

        The day started normally enough.

        Keith tried to make some eggs, but burns them badly. They ended up eating them anyway.

        Robyn fought against everything from getting her diaper changed to being held by either parent but not wanting to be put down either. Pidge shuddered when thinking about how she’ll be in her terrible twos.

        But while Pidge was trying to do something in the kitchen for lunch, Keith turned on the TV for background noise for Robyn.

        The sound crackled and the screen was staticy, but Keith took an interest in what they’re saying so her worked to fix it.

        “ -found the fugitives Katie Holt and Keith Kogane, and FBI and will be taking measures to apprehend them this afternoon, ” the anchor said gravely.

        Pidge dropped the dish in her hand and it crashed to the ground, breaking into an innumerable about of pieces.

        She slowly turned to the TV and Keith. He was just as pale as she felt.

        The screen shows a picture of Keith, mostly disguised, in town. He’s just buying the food from what would have been two days prior in his lifetime. Pidge’s blood ran cold. She couldn’t hear what was going on.

        Keith finally broke his gaze away from the TV and caught Pidge’s, forcing them to lock eyes. His breathing was shallow.

        “We have to go.”

        Pidge could only nod.

        They didn’t have a choice.

        Pidge had just finished packing the most important necessities for Robyn when she saw the dark line on the horizon.

        “They’re coming,” Keith said from behind her, placing a hand on her shoulder. He held onto Robyn.

        “We’d better get ready before they get here, then,” Pidge claimed. Keith traded the bag for baby and they headed out to the back.

        All they had was Keith’s motorcycle and a sidecar. If they didn’t have Robyn, they could have stuffed more things in there while Pidge rode behind Keith, but as it was they did and they weren’t leaving without her (they didn’t even have to speak on that matter) so Pidge was riding in the side car with Robyn. The necessities were tied on behind Keith.

        As soon as Pidge’s helmet was secured, Keith took off. The wind pushed at her and dust flew up around them. Pidge his Robyn’s face in her shirt, though Robyn squirmed and complained about the treatment, while Pidge hid her own face in Robyn’s head.

        They drove for hours, not daring to stop. Pidge swore that she could hear sirens, but each time they were only imaginary.

        When they finally stopped, it was in another dusty, nameless town. Pidge found a bathroom to change Robyn and clean them both up in.

        Pidge exited with a sigh of relief, meaning to go up to the front and thank the owner. However, he seemed to be absent so Pidge just stuck around for a minutes. It was cool in the shop, and blazing hot outside. Pidge was also sure she was getting a sunburn.

        “Charlie, please,” whined a voice. Pidge’s head shot up at the sound of it. She recognized it.

        “Cera, not now ,” chided the voice that must have been Charlie. “We need to get the necessities only.”

        Pidge crept towards the aisle they were in, standing silently at the end.

        Cera’s hair was chopped messily around her head and her clothes were dirty and tattered. “Charlie” was in the same state, but he had a round, still childlike face matched with dark brown hair and eyes that were too old for his time.

        Pidge had to stop herself from reaching out to them. They weren’t hers in this lifetime. They didn’t even know who she was. Or if they did, then they’d think she was a murderer.

        Before Robyn could start fussing, Pidge turned and exited the shop.

        Pidge almost bumped into Keith as she exited. He held up a set of keys. “Shop owner traded his jeep for the bike,” he explained. “It’s filled to the brim, with a couple canisters in the back. It’s time to go.”

        Pidge only nodded silently, not trusting herself in case she did something stupid like mention Charlie and Cera and not be able to tell Keith how she knew them.

        It was better to be silent.

        Though under the shade of the roof of the jeep, the sun beat down on Pidge and her skin peeled. She held Robyn on her lap, though she was mostly naked for the moment. In that heat, it would have given her heatstroke to be bundled up. But in the sun too long, she’d burn as well.

        It was a delicate balance Pidge was afraid of crossing, so she was thankful when the sun finally set at their backs.

        Keith drove with an intensity that told he didn’t know where they were going, but he was going to get them there alive.

        When he got tired, Pidge took over for a bit. But even she was getting drowsy so she ended up pulling them over before climbing onto the backseat with Keith and Robyn.

        It wasn’t a comfy fit, but they made it work by wrapping their arms around each other.

        “I’m sorry,” Keith murmured so not to disturb the sleeping Robyn. “About… all of this. Making you go on the run. I don’t regret Robyn being in our lives, but when and how she was brought to us…”

        Pidge shook her head, lightly hitting his arm. “Don’t be an idiot,” she demanded as the wind howled. “I don’t want to hear it, idiot. If I was really serious about not wanting this with you, I would have gone a long time ago and not looked back.”

        Keith grinned a bit, though it was those scrunched eyebrows and tilted lips that made it a not-exactly-happy kind of smile.

        Pidge pulled Keith into a sitting position, setting Robyn down on the seat before pushing Keith out of the jeep.

        There was no music, and Pidge knew for a fact that she wasn’t a good dancer, but nonetheless she placed Keith’s hand on her hip and took his other one in her hand. He laughed at her determined expression.

        “What are you doing?” he questioned lightly.

        Pidge quirked an eyebrow, tilting her lips in a smirk. “Making myself just as uncomfortable as you are just to show you how much I apparently love you.”


        “And we’re going to leave it at that. Indulge me, okay?”

        Without another word, Pidge pulled Keith along with her in a strange, clumsy dance under the stars and by the light of the moon.

        If Pidge didn’t already know what it was like to be in space, she might have said it was out of this world.

        Many times Pidge had known the word “uncomfortable”. Social situations, how she woke up in the middle of the night, the positions she had to take to do something when working on a project- hell, every time she’d woken up with someone new- but trying to sleep in the passenger side of a car- nonetheless a jeep- was a new one to add to the list.

        Keith could apparently fall asleep anywhere because as soon as he’d sat down in the driver’s seat and closed his eyes, he’d fallen asleep.

        It took Pidge a bit longer.

        Part of it was because she kept looking at both Keith and Robyn, thinking about the future if she chose it. The future if she didn’t.

        It sent her mind spiraling in circles that she really didn’t need.

        Without even realizing it, Pidge ended up falling asleep, their images imprinted in her mind.

Chapter Text


        Cinnamon and cloves.

        Pidge woke with a jerk, having had a small body slam into her, squealing excitedly.

        “Mommy, Mommy, it’s Christmas!” Kaz exclaimed. “Get up, get up, get up!” Kaz jumped off of Pidge’s abdomen and then proceeded to attempt to pull her up with his one hand. He groaned loudly as Pidge didn’t move.

        Pidge, herself, was still blinking sleep away. The smell of cinnamon and cloves melted away, leaving mint and pine trees and cold in its wake.

        With a groan, Pidge sat up and pressed at her eyes before shaking her head. She didn’t feel grounded. She felt like she was floating; out of her body. But this was her last day with Kaz.

        She was going to make the best of it.

        Pidge pulled the covers off and allowed Kaz to chase her into the living room, though it was still mostly dark outside the window.

        Kaz tugged on Pidge’s sleeve, looking up at her with a hopeful smile.

        “Mommy, which one is Daddy in?” he asked, making Pidge’s eyes widen.


        “Which present is Daddy in?” Kaz asked, pointing to the many boxes beneath and around the tree. “I wanna open that one first so he can watch us open the rest! I also got him that really, really cool present that I want him to open!”

        Pidge sat heavily on the nearest chair, pain prickling behind her eyes. “Kaz- Kaz, baby, come here.” Slowly, Kaz’s features dropped as he walked towards Pidge’s outstretched arms. Without complaint, Kaz allowed her to pick him up and hold him close to her chest. “Daddy isn’t in any of them, Kaz,” she whispered softly.

        Kaz’s face scrunched up, looking like he was about to cry. “But- But Daddy said he’d be here!” he shouted, almost screamed. “He promised ! Daddy’s not a liar! He’s not, he’s not, he’s not!”

        “Baby, I didn’t say he was,” Pidge said, giving him a broken smile and grabbing his hand. “He’s… just not here right now.”

        Kaz sniffled as tears slipped from his eyes. He rubbed at them, but they continued to silently fall. “When’s he gonna be here?” he grumbled. “Daddy promised .”

        Pidge smoothed hair out of Kaz’s face, kissing his forehead. “By- By tonight,” she told him. “He’ll- He’ll be home tonight.”

        Pidge could only hope that he’d be coming home alive .

        Kaz sniffled again, looking up at Pidge with a blindingly bright smile while brushing his tears away. “Then I wanna wait for Daddy to get back to open the presents,” he stated.

        Something small shattered in Pidge’s heart.

        Breakfast wasn’t anything big- toaster waffles with an excess amount of syrup that was definitely not good for either of them. Then they turned on Christmas music and danced around the kitchen while cleaning up breakfast dishes.

        Kaz insisted on making Christmas cookies- sugar cookies this time, so they could decorate them.

        While he may have only had one hand, even at his young age he wasn’t hindered. When holding the ice cream squeezy thing (Pidge had never learned what it was called), he bit the top to hold it still and squeezed with his hand while directing it with his stub.

        He worked by sight, and made beautiful cookies. Though mis-and-oddly colored, beautiful all the same. It could have been a mother’s biased, but Pidge allowed herself that little headroom.

        Lunch came in the form of mashed potatoes and glazed carrots. Followed by just sticking their forks into one of the pumpkin pies, piled high with a copious amount of whipped cream, and chowing down. 

        Then Kaz pulled Pidge outside to make a snowman and snow angels. They made so many snow angels, she lost count. And they ended up making a whole snow family. Some neighbor kids came over when they were seen outside, and Pidge froze for a moment, but Kaz called out excitedly and began playing with them seamlessly.

        Kaz’s friends, along with Kaz and Pidge, headed inside to Pidge’s apartment where Pidge made everyone hot chocolate. Knowing right where it was, Kaz broke out Clue and coerred Pidge into playing with them instead of just sitting back and watching.

        The other kids laughed at Pidge’s snarky comments about everything, but Kaz continuously claimed he regretted having he play and kept trying to push her out of their circle on the floor.

        Around dinner time, the parents of the other children came to collect them. After cleaning up, Pidge and Kaz fell onto the couch.

        “Mommy, when does Daddy’s flight get in?” he asked softly, looking down at his hand. His fingers played with the little stubs on the other arm.

        Pidge took a deep breath. “Around eleven thirty,” she said.

        Kaz nodded. But he didn’t look up. “Can I- Can I stay up?”

        “Of course, Kazuki.”

        Pidge wasn’t sure what they had for dinner; it passed by in too much of a haze. She knew she barely ate anything. Kaz seemed to be sensing her anxious mood and didn’t really eat either.

        In an vain effort to release the tension, Pidge put on some old Christmas classics.

        It didn’t really work too well.

        Both stared blank faced at the screen.

        After a while, Kaz grabbed ahold of Pidge hand. Then, ever slowly, he snuggled closer and closer. Pidge finally wrapped her arm around him and he snuggled into her side, gripping onto her shirt.

        His breathing slowed as the movie played on.

        By the time the credits rolled and Pidge had turned the TV off, it was nearing eleven. Pidge looked over to the Christmas tree, with all its unopened Christmas presents.

        She didn’t think she’d ever seen something so entirely depressing.

        Gently, she shook Kaz awake. “Baby, go get your coat on so we can go meet Daddy,” she whispered as Kaz blurrily blinked open his eyes.

        Kaz nodded and padded over to the coat rack, pulling on his boots and coat. Pidge picked up her own scarf and hat, pulling them on before her coat.

        She called a taxi in, not trusting herself with driving even if she knew where, or if , she had a car. Kaz was quiet the entire ride up to the airport.

        The lights were too bright, Pidge thought even as they swirled around her. The only thing that seemed to ground her was Kaz’s hand in hers as they sat in the hard plastic seats in the waiting room of the airport.

        Pidge’s foot bounced up and down as it passed 11:10. 11:20. 11:30. 11:40. 11:45. 11:50.

        She looked back down at her watch. “They’re late,” she said through gritted teeth.

        “The gates for flight 251 are now opening,” said a mechanical female face.

        “Daddy’s!” Kaz shouted, breaking Pidge out of her thoughts. He dashed away from Pidge and towards the growing number of people gathering around the gates.

        All the families of the marines and other military men.

        “Daddy!” Kaz called again.

        “Kaz, wait!” Pidge called, running after him. “Kaz!”

        But he wasn’t stopping, launching himself straight into the crowd.

        Pidge ran towards the crowd, trying to push through. “Sorry- I’m sorry- I have to find my son- Kaz! Kaz, where are you?!”

        The military men exited the gate and their families swarmed them, not heeding Pidge on her search of her son. In the moment, she looked to see if Shiro would come through the gate, but her gaze was blocked by the people.

        Their cheers grew to a roar. Deafening. Overwhelming.


        That was Kaz.

        Pidge threw herself back into her reckless search. “Kaz!”

        There was a flash of white, and Pidge’s breath caught in her throat. She whipped towards it, but people had moved again.

        She stood alone in a circle of people. All of them and their families. No matter which way she looked, there was no opening. No familiar face.

        Then there was white once again.

        “Shiro!” Pidge shouted, running after the hair. “Shiro!”

        Pidge was running, pushing through the crowd.

        The was a pounding in the back of her head. After a moment, she recognized it as a clock. But she hadn’t seen any clocks-

        Three .


        Four .



        Where are they?! Where is my family?!


        Pidge was running and running and running-

        Seven .

        She felt like she was going in circles.

        Eight .

        Running, running, running.


        Running, runningrunningfloating.

        Ten .


        Eleven .


        Twelve .

        Falling. Falling. Falling.

        Pidge wasn’t in the airport. She was falling through black. Black or stars or grey, she couldn’t tell.

        But then she was landing.

        Heavy and hard and she was grounded. She opened her eyes with a gasp and sat up, for a moment not recognizing her surroundings. She only thought about Shiro and Kaz. Where were they? Was Shiro okay? Was Kaz okay?

        Then she recognized where she was.

        She was back in her room, on the castle. She was back in her fifteen year old body. She looked over to the clock. Though it was the space timeology and Altean language, Pidge had learned to recognize when it early.

        And she had made her decision.

        Pidge forcefully pulled the blankets and ran to the com by her door, slipping and sliding on the floor and not caring if she knocked over her things.

        The com buzzed as she pressed the button.

        “Yes?” said the voice on the other side.

        “I- I- I need to talk to you,” Pidge said, her voice cracking as she forced it out.

        “Pidge, what’s wrong-?”

        “Just meet me in the observatory, please.” Her words bordered on begging. She’d thought before that she was above it, but it seemed in this moment she was desperate.

        The com cackled as Pidge waited for her answer.

        “I’ll be there as soon as I can.”

        Pidge breathed a sigh of relief, pulling on her clothes before running to the observatory.

        It seemed like so long since she’d last been in this life, the real one. And she was about to see the person she’d missed most.

Chapter Text

        Pidge turned as the door opened and Hunk stepped through.

        He looked fidgety and nervous as the door closed behind him. Pidge gave him what she hoped was a reassuring smile. In this present or in the future, he was always the same. Maybe his looks were changed, maybe he had strong, sharper features, maybe he was covered in tattoos. But he was still Hunk .

        “What was it you wanted to talk about?” he asked, tapping his fingertips together.

        Pidge grinned impishly, holding her hands behind her back and rocking back and forth on the balls of her feet. “Well, I guess I was wrong in my analysis,” she said. “The future fruit worked.”

        Hunk’s jaw dropped, then he broke into a large grin, rushing to Pidge and taking her shoulders. “It worked?!” he exclaimed giddily. “You actually saw the future?” His finals words came out in a breathless awe.

        Pidge nodded, reaching up to wraps her arms around his neck. “I saw so many different version of it,” she explained, leaning closer until their noses touched. “But you were the inevitability I chose,” she whispered.

        Then she pressed their lips together in a highly uncharastically Pidge move. It took breaking apart, Hunk wide eyed and blushing and asking “Really?” and Pidge nodding for Hunk to leans back down and kiss her back.

        “It’s nice that you chose me,” he claimed when they broke apart. “Because even if you didn’t, I’d still be in love with you.”

        Being with Hunk was… easy .

        It helped that everyone’s reactions to it were hilarious, because they didn’t find out until sometime after the two got together. The relationship just… didn’t really change. Pidge had never been one too big on PDA, and Hunk was generally too nervous about it as well. So all romantic things were done behind closed doors.

        Finding and rescuing Pidge’s dad was the greatest thing to happen after they got together, though.

        He readily accepted Hunk, and looked on Pidge with pride at her choice of man.

        Time was difficult in space. No one really had “years” or “days” like earth did. Some had equivalents that were longer, or shorter. But nothing ever really matched up right.

        When Pidge, Hunk, and Matt had finally been able to convert how long they’d been in space to the length of time had passed back home, it’d been roughly two years.

        They all shared a sad, almost depressed look.

        They were all anxious to return back home. The war was over, long over, but there was still too much to do. They needed to help reform the Galra empire.

        There had been petty fights and playful arguments between Hunk and Pidge before, but never had it sent Pidge running off in anger.

        She ended up in her lion, riding away to who knows where.

        She was thinking clearly, everything she’d said whirling around in her head and mixing with Hunk’s words- though she knew he’d only meant to be kind and to help her take care of herself because they all knew she wouldn’t if given the chance- until she couldn’t tell whose was whose anymore.

        Eventually, she ended up on an abandoned nebula. Not a clue as to where in the universe she was.

        She sat in the seat and cried.

        Her hands hurt from clenching so hard. Her eyes hurt from violent sobs. Her shoulders and back hurt from all the shaking she couldn’t stop. Her mind hurt from all the thinking that wouldn’t stop .

        Pidge’s headset crackled and she hiccuped.


        It was the voice causing Pidge’s body all of that torment, but the one voice she needed at the moment. She hiccuped again, fresh tears running down her cheeks. She made a noise as she tried to make words, but nothing intelligible came out.

        Hunk bit back a gasp. “I’m on my way, Pidge. Just hold on.”

        Moments later, Hunk came by in the yellow lion, just picking it straight up and carrying her back to the castle.

        As soon as Pidge stumbled out of the mouth of the lion, Hunk was wrapping her in his arms tightly.

        “Are you hurt anywhere? Are you okay?” Hunk questioned, looking over her intently as the others soon joined them.

        Pidge shook her head, wrapping her arms around him. “No. No. I’m fine, I’m fine. I’m sorry, I’m sorry.”

        Hunk held her close, breathing a sigh of relief. “There’s nothing to be sorry about,” he whispered in her ear. Pidge only held on tighter.

        They returned to Earth.

        Of course they returned. Heroes always returned.

        Happily, joyously. They returned home.

        To bright blue skies in the morning and sunset painted golden and crimson and violet. To candy on Halloween and presents on Christmas and get togethers on birthdays.

        And weddings in the spring.

        The engagement was a short one. A cheesy proposal on Valentine’s Day that Pidge told Hunk not to do, followed by a wedding in May.

        It wasn’t a meager affair, nor was it large.

        There were flowers adorned in Pidge’s hair and she wore a dress with long lace sleeves and diamonds on her neck.

        Nothing was more beautiful than the “I do, I do, I do”.

        Because of course they returned. Battered, bruised. But alive, and well, and happy.

        Over the years, Pidge debated telling Hunk about how many children they’d actually had in the lifetime. Some days, she thought he deserved to know. Other days she felt like being mischievous and letting him find out as time went on. In the end, she was indecisive and didn’t tell him.

        The day she found out she was pregnant for the first time, Pidge finally decided; Hunk’s expressions would be worth it. Probably better than her own.

        And nine months later, when they finally welcomed Cierra and Chloe (Pidge had finally found out where Chloe came from- Hunk’s mother) into the world, Hunk was still in mild disbelief. But still so happy.

        Pidge was happy, too. Also in so many stages of disbelief.

        She’d made it. It was happening.

        The future she’d dreamed of.

        Pidge held her daughter close, snuggling the child while Hunk held the other, unable to contain the happy glow.

        By the time Pidge was pregnant with the triplets, Chloe and Cierra were little rascals . They loved to switch on people and play tricks on everyone who came by.

        But they loved Lance and Keith, and were only little angels for the two.

        Keith’s hair was still long, of course, and the girls loved playing with it. Keith had learned to just accept it by the time they were two. And what small child didn’t like Lance?

        Hunk sat by Pidge while watching the twins play with Keith and Lance. They’d recently found out about the triplets, and had announced the news to friends and family, resulting in the congratulatory visit from their two friends.

        “No more,” Hunk said with a heavy breath. “If they’re gonna be like these two…”

        Pidge let out a laugh. “Ooo, they’re going to be worse.”

        “You knew?!”

        “Darling, I always know.”

        Pidge had thought, occasionally, of not having the quadruplets.

        After all, she hadn’t met them in the dream- though exact details had gone wonky over the years; maybe Chloe’s shirt on the first day had been green, but maybe it’d been blue- but generally, in those times Pidge would rest a hand on her stomach and remember the distant feeling of them in there.

        How she’d been huge, but hadn’t been particularly unhappy. She’d been coddled, but loved. She felt full . Not just in the literal sense.

        Of course, a major factor for not wanting them was that she was scared if she did go to have them, she’d end up dying. She didn’t want to leave Hunk or Chloe or Cierra or Theo or Opal or Jace- god, Jace , who would hate himself for the rest of his life if he was the cause of it- Pidge couldn’t bring herself to even think of it. She wouldn’t miss something she’d never had.


        But Pidge still had a few years to give it some thought.

        It wasn’t like she had to get pregnant again the next day, she mused as she looked at the sleeping faces of her newborn triplets.

        As it always goes, something happened.

        What was that something? It could have been Pidge forgot to take her pill because she got so wrapped up in her work (the last time that happened, so had Cierra and Chloe). Or maybe there’s been a faulty condom. Or maybe subconscious Pidge had really wanted them and had sabotaged their efforts to prevent more children.

        Whatever the way, it was undeniable that Pidge was pregnant .

        And she was pale and shaking on the floor of the bathroom as she looked at the test in front of her.

        Hunk was, admittedly, very good at reading Pidge. It came from so many years in close proximity.

        Sometimes, like that night at dinner, it was problematic.

        “Are you okay?” Hunk asked as Pidge only picked at her dinner.

        The past two pregnancies, Pidge had kept things secret.

        And this one, she knew how Hunk would be if she said anything. But more than anything, she knew how he was regularly . He was kind, loving. He’d help her, sooth her. And she needed that right then.

        The children rushed out of the room, all grins and giggles as they finished their dinner. It was only afterwards that Pidge allowed herself to speak.

        “I’m… pregnant,” she whimpered, struggling to hold back her tears. “With quadruplets.” She looked up to Hunk with shining eyes. “I’m scared.”

        Immediately, Hunk was at her side and holding her as Pidge cried, clinging onto him as she explained everything she could fully remember.

        “Stupid hormones,” she grumbled, but both of them knew it wasn’t completely that.

        The old Voltron team was caught up on the entire fiasco. Everyone was worried for Pidge, and someone even suggested and abortion. Which Pidge vehemently shot down.

        Then Lance came up with and idea.

        “Help,” he said. “So Pidge can relax as thing start getting difficult, and have help around the house while Hunk’s at work.”

        “Anyone in mind?” Hunk asked.

        Lance shrugged. “She’s young, but she’s skilled and attentive,” he claimed. “My attendee, Hana. Her methods are efficient, too.”

        “Yes,” Pidge said automatically.

        Hunk looked warry. “We’ve never even met her…”

        Pidge gave him a look, gripping at her stomach. “You have to remember that I have ,” she stated. “And I trust her. Future Blue Lion pilot, good with the kids. They loved her. I’m sure things aren’t too different.”

        Hunk met Pidge’s eye, but, seeing the determination and conviction in them, nodded. “I trust you, Pidge” he told her.

        That was all they needed to hear.

        Hana came by for a formal interview, but she was just as bubbly and excitable as Pidge remembered her.

        During the interview, Pidge got to see another side of her that she hadn’t in the previous encounter; her relationship with Lance.

        Pidge had well known that Hana was going to be taking over the blue lion for Lance in a few years, but their relationship wasn’t completely just student/mentor.

        In this life, Lance couldn’t have kids of his own. Both he and his spouse were male. But then there was Hana, who he doted on like a father. She was accepted into their little family circle as if she’d always belonged there.

        “Are you sure she ain’t your kid?” Pidge asked at one point.

        Lance just crossed his arms and gave her a look. “I’m positive,” he told her, smiling a bit when he looked back over to Hana. “God, but wouldn’t that be easier?”

        “That’s until you actually have to deal with her teenager bullcrap instead of sending her home.”

        Lance laughed, ruffling Pidge’s hair much to her chargin, before taking Hana home.

        “I think we’ll be fine,” Hunk said, later that night. Pidge nodded in agreement, leaning against Hunk in the bed. It’d be perfectly fine.

        Hana came around every other weekend for the first few months to get the kids used to her. After school got out for the summer and it began the last few months of Pidge’s pregnancy, she started coming around everyday.

        Most of Pidge’s friends disliked leaving her in the house with any less than two adults in case there was an emergency, but they all had jobs (save for Hana, whose job was Pidge), so often it was just Pidge and Hana in the house looking after the other kids.

        Though she knew it was going to happen, and that it was good for her, Pidge felt suffocated. Coddled. Restrained.

        She didn’t like it.

        Though she kept telling herself to keep her cool and not blow her top or rebel, sometimes Pidge couldn’t help it. She wasn’t helpless . She was still Pidge, for everything it was worth.

        It warranted some rebelling, didn’t it? She felt entirely justified.

        Pidge had been here before.

        It was a fleeting feeling. The memory was there then gone. Exact details weren’t clear.

        That had been a dream, this was reality. Admittedly, it had been a dream of the future that had come more true than Pidge would have ever guessed, but nonetheless, it had been a dream .

        The arguing, the screaming, the anger. The fight.

        But yet the night ended the same way; Pidge laid in her bed on her side, Hunk behind her with his arm wrapped around her.

        “I’m worried about you,” he whispered.

        “I know.”

        Fleeting feelings and things Pidge couldn’t fully remember.

        “Mama, I wanna color.”

        “Wait for Hana to come back. Mommy’s not supposed to be up.”

        “But I wanna color now !”

        Pidge huffed. “I’m not helpless, and they’re just some crayons,” she stated.

        Pidge was up on the stool, reaching for the crayons when the memory hit her. Falling, falling, hitting her head. Blacking out.

        Pidge was falling before she knew what was happening. Is this where I die?


        Things were dark, after that.

        Everything hurt, so Pidge was sure she wasn’t dead. Or if she was, she was in Hell. Which wouldn’t have surprised her with some of the things she’s done in her life, but…

        Hell didn’t have florescent lights, right ?

        The light blinded Pidge even though her eyes were still closed. When she blinked them open, she could tell the lights came in through the open door the doctor stood in. The actual lights in the room were dimmed down to a heavy golden glow, as to not irritate the sleeping paitent.

        It would have worked, if she hadn’t been blinded by the lgihts outside the room.

        The doctor came in, checking on all of Pidge’s vitals and making notes on her clipboard.

        “Where’s- Where’s my husband?” Pidge managed to croak out. The doctor’s face broke out into a large smile that was almost as blinding as the florecent lights on the other side of the door.

        “I’ll send him right in,” she whispered, before leaving Pidge alone.

        The door opened a few minutes later and the full frame of Hunk stepped through. He hurried to Pidge’s side, evidence of past fear and tears staining his face.

        He held her hand tightly, kissing her knuckles. “I was so scared,” he muttered. “I was so scared that you were going to leave me. I was scared that we’d almost lost the babies-”

        “But I’m fine,” Pidge said. Her lips were cracked. Her mouth was dry. But she smiled. “The babies… they’re okay?”

        Hunk nodded, smiling a bit as well. “All four of them,” he told her. “Two boys and two girls.”

        Pidge almost gasped out tears. Hunk laughed, kissing her knuckles again.

        “Isn’t there something you were supposed to say to me?” he teased.

        Pidge tilted her head, smirking just a bit. “Hunk? I told you so.”

Chapter Text

        In the span of time it took for Pidge to get from her room to the observatory and for the doors to open, she’d decided it was admittedly not a great idea to go bursting out that she’d seen the future and wanted this version of it.

        But she couldn’t back out of the meeting now.

        The doors opened behind Pidge and she turned around. Shiro was looking worried but immaculate, as he always did. In the very core of her being, Pidge could see this man being a military man no matter when universe he ended up in. He was built to be a leader, a warrior.

        “Pidge, what’s wrong?” he asked, coming just a bit closer. Once fully in the room, the doors shut behind him.

        Pidge pushed her bangs out of her face, grappling with trying to find something to say. “It’s- It’s stupid,” she claimed. “Just- a bad dream, I guess. And you were the first person I thought of.”

        Shiro immediately crossed the room and wrapped Pidge up in his arms. “It’s okay now.”

        “Yeah, it is.”

        Pidge had basically known Shiro half her life. He’d been a good friend to Matt and had come around occasionally. Which was one of the reason she could say she knew him.

        See, Shiro didn’t break promises. It didn’t matter to who, it wasn’t Shiro’s style to break promises. He could a sarcastic ass when he wanted to and word it with a clause to wiggle out of the exact details, but in the end Shiro didn’t break promises.

        Unless there was something seriously wrong .

        Standing, faced with two people with the same face- Shiro’s face- everyone hesitated. They were locked in a death grip. One of them was going to die. But both insisted they were the real Shiro .

        The Shiro in ragged clothes and shaggy hair looked to Keith, then to Pidge. Their eyes met. “I promised I’d come back, didn’t I?”

        That was all Pidge needed to hear before she charged.

        Hell could have been a place, but it could have also been a feeling.

        Watching the Galra go from a tyrannical empire to a fairly peaceful kingdom, it was agonizing in the fact Pidge just wanted to go home .

        All she’d signed up for was to save her brother and dad, and she’d agreed to stay until the war was over. But it was over now and Pidge was still hanging around and not at home, where she should be.

        But she couldn’t just leave . They needed her. She had friends up here. Allura and Coran and Hunk and Keith and, yes, Lance of all people.

        And there was Shiro. Shiro, who had started making Pidge blush and run off uncharacteristically like a schoolgirl ever since the real him had returned. Shiro, who was still her leader and friend. Shiro, who Pidge was hopelessly in love with.

        Pidge couldn’t quite decide if the feeling was pleasant or not.

        Pidge was twenty by the time she returned to Earth, for good. She’d made occasional trips back to see her family, but felt an obligation to return to space to finish what she started with the rest of Voltron.

        The rest of the team joined her on Earth, save for Allura and Coran who’d found their place in the Galra empire. Right up there by Lotor, though Pidge had no room to say anything whatsoever.

        It was summer, and no one had quite decided where they were going yet. Their paths hadn’t quite diverged into different ones. No one had really thought that far ahead.

        So they were all together.

        Pidge sat down by Shiro in her own beach chair. She’d had quite enough of all this dancing around the subject.

        “We’re dating now.”

        “You really shouldn’t joke about things like that.”

        “I’m not joking.”

        “Pidge, I am ten years your senior-”

        “And the amount of shits I give is less than a grain of sand.”

        No one could say Pidge wasn’t persuasive.

        Shiro could be so stubborn .

        It seemed every other week during the period of their dating over several years, he was trying to convince Pidge it wasn’t going to work out.

        Pidge was beginning to think he had seflestem issues.

        Finally, she’d had just about enough of him and his irritating attempts to get her to give up when she was so obviously stubborn too.

She slammed her palms on the table in front of him, making him jump back in surprise.

        “Marry me and I’ll prove to you just how serious I am about this relationship,” she stated, and Shiro gaped like a fish, opening and closing his mouth repeatedly.

        “Did you just… propose?”

        “What, do I have to get down on one knee and hold out a ring?”

        “Please don’t.”

        Pidge had never really been a religious person. But she couldn’t help but appreciate the atmosphere of the church the day of the wedding.

        Deep velvet cloth was strung on either side, wreaths of stephanotis floribunda- was she ever glad that her mother had helped plan this thing because she’d have never thought to use them- were hung on the back of each pew. There was a crown of them nestled in Pidge’s hair, as well.

        With her father aging and not able to stand for long, Matt was the one walking her down the aisle. And after he’d given her away, he’d join the others at Shiro’s side. Well, Lance and Hunk were on Pidge’s side and decked all out in flowers in place of the bridesmaids she didn’t have because of a lack of female friends.

        She looked at each of her friends, think to all of the futures she might had had. But at the march began to play and she grabbed onto Matt’s arm and Shiro turned and their eyes met, Pidge couldn’t regret the choice she’d been taken.

        Pidge didn’t consider herself in a rush. She was only in her early twenties. And she’d only recently gotten married.

        Buuuuut that hadn’t stopped her from doing the math and figuring out when she’d have to get pregnant to have Kaz several years earlier.

        She wasn’t even really trying- but she wasn’t opposing it either. It was just… They hadn’t talked about kids. Pidge knew for a face that he’d be a great father, it was just… a difficult topic to bring up. She didn’t want to interrupt their peaceful life just yet.

        But get pregnant they did. And Pidge didn’t need to worry about Shiro. He was ecstatic as she was.

        Pidge had laughed when the doctors told her she was going to have a girl. She knew that the ultrasounds could be wrong- her parents were going to name Matt Matilda of all things.

        She just didn’t expect the miscarriage while Shiro was out on duty.

        It caused Pidge a great shock, and she felt cold while sitting in the hospital afterwards.

        This wasn’t what she wanted out of changing the future.

        She needn't have worried.

        She was still going to have a baby, she found out not two months later. She was pregnant again.

        It was pure luck that Shiro was home at the time. Pidge wasn’t due for another three months.

        But still, the baby was insistent on coming out now , so she was rushed to the hospital.

        The baby was small, smaller than most Pidge had seen. His heartbeat was erratic, and he had to be placed in an incubator for a while.

        But from the moment he was placed in Pidge’s arms, she knew she’d love him forever; deformed hand and all. He was beautiful to her, and she’d love him with everything she had. The shining look in Shiro’s eyes told the same story.

        “Kazuki,” she said. “It means hope, doesn’t it?”

        “Kazuki Shirogane. I think it’ll work.”

        Kaz was a bright child. Smiling constantly and he loved dearly.

        Despite the lack of a hand- or perhaps because of it- he developed quite a bit faster than Pidge expected. He was walking and running and talking before Pidge could blink.

        He loved coloring and drawing, even if he wasn’t very good yet. He was trying, and Pidge always displayed the drawings up around the house, sending pictures of them to Shiro constantly while he was away.

        When Kaz began school, he was possibly the most excited he’d ever been. Sure, he had those kids in the apartment over to play with, but he liked people in general. It wasn’t nearly enough, but going to school would mean lots of people.

        It was those people that had Pidge scared. People, especially children, could be cruel.

        Pidge didn’t want him to get hurt.

        His entire first day, Pidge fretted around the house while waiting to come home.

        He burst in through the front door with his neighbor friends at the end of the day, all smiles. Pidge smiled as when while she made them snacks and they chattered about their days.

        It seemed Pidge wouldn’t need to worry, and could look into getting more hours at work to give herself something to do during the day.

        In September, Shiro had been given another mission overseas.

        Pidge had considered begging him not to go. She knew what happened. She didn’t want to risk it. But Shiro only promised to call her every night before leaving with a kiss to get on the plane.

        Pidge watched with a pang in her heart.

        She gripped Kaz’s hand tightly.

        She didn’t like it. She didn’t like it at all.

        It was the beginning of December, and Kaz had left for school but Pidge still had time before work. She sat at the computer, talking with Shiro.

        There was a lull in the conversation, and Pidge looked down at her hands.

        “Are you going to be home for Christmas this year?” she asked.

        Shiro let out a sad sigh. “I… don’t know,” he said. “I’ll try, but I don’t know.”

        Pidge let out a bit of a dry laugh. “Yeah. That’s all I can ask, isn’t it?” she mused. “I- I miss you.”

        “I miss you too.”

        Christmas drew ever nearer. Carols were permanently stuck in Pidge’s head, and, like every year prior, Pidge wondered if they’d ever come out. (Though, like ever year prior, she’d become grateful to the songs once they stopped playing on the radio and regular, trash music began playing again.)

        “Good news!” Shiro said one morning. “I’ll be coming home for Christmas!”

        “Daddy’s coming home, Daddy’s coming home, Daddy’s coming home!” Kaz shouted jumping around the room and cheering.

        Pidge felt happy, but also felt the pang in her chest full of dread.

        This had happened before. Could she really change it?

        There were far too many people. Kaz clutched onto Pidge’s long sweater as they stood with the other military families while waiting for their soldiers to come through the gate. The doors opened.

        “Daddy!” Kaz cried, breaking away from Pidge. He ran into the crowd before Pidge could even blink.

        “Kaz!” she shrieked, running after him. “Kaz, come back!”

        She pushed through the crowd, but most of the people were much like their military counterparts- brick walls.



        Finally, Pidge managed to break free of the crowd in front as the first soldiers came through.

        Shiro came through, kneeling with his arms out was Kaz ran to him. In one swoop, he picked Kaz up and held him close, Kaz laughing and giggling as he was spun around. Shiro turned and held out his free arm to Pidge.

        Her breath caught in her throat.

        This man, this military man who always scared her every time he left, the one she’d been so scared she’d lose, was here . Holding their child. Holding out an arm to embrace her with if only she would move and take it.

        And suddenly she was moving without her own accord. She was five steps, three steps, one step- and then suddenly she was in his arms and laughing with uncontainable joy.

        Shiro hugged them both close as other families reunited. “I promised I’d be here for Christmas, didn’t I?” he whispered. “I promised to always come back.”

Chapter Text


        The single word was enough to break Pidge out of her revery. She turned to see Allura stepping through the doors, hands folded in front of her.

        “Um, hi, Allura,” Pidge said, looking down. Why was it so hard to directly look at her?!

        “What is it you wanted to talk about?” Allura asked kindly.

        Pidge cleared her throat. “Well, uh, funny thing I did last night? Um, I kinda went and tried one of the fruits we got from Cinveon, and, ah, it was called soarta ?”

        Allura’s face broke out in a grin and she clapped her hands. “What did you see?” she asked.

        Pidge couldn’t help the heat the ran from her neck all the way up to her cheeks then to her ears. “Different alternates of the future… in life… on Earth. One of which was with you…”

        Pidge quickly looked back down, wanting to kick herself, but that would have to wait because it wasn’t a dignified thing to do in front of a princess. But the princess wasn’t saying anything, and it was making Pidge worried.

        She looked up, her head moving so fast she almost gave herself whiplash. Allura was bright red, covering her lower face with her hand.

        When Pidge looked back at her, she cleared her throat and brushed hair behind her ear. “I’m… I’m flattered that you would chose this future, Pidge,” she said, her voice level.

        Pidge gave her a doubtful look. “But it’s weird, right? You’re weirded out.” She turned away and looked back out to the stars. “Yeah, it’s fine. It’d be weird back on Earth too.”

        A hand touched Pidge’s shoulder and she jumped. Allura stood at her side, smiling in that charming way she always had.

        “If you saw it, the possibility is certainly there,” she said. “So… shall we see how it goes?”

        Pidge gave her a strained smile. “Yeah. I guess that’s the best I can hope for, isn’t it?”

        Zarkon was defeated. Lotor was on the throne. Things were being managed well.

        And the paladins were talking about finally going home.

        Everyone was excited to be going back to Earth, all except Allura. Whenever Pidge looked at her, she could see the sadness radiating off her in waves.

        “There’s enough room on our damn planet for a couple more,” Pidge said, sitting by Allura. “If you haven’t got a home, I’ll share mine with you.”

        The sadness melted from Allura’s eyes as Pidge grabbed her hand. “Thank you, Pidge.”

        Pidge snorted, squeezing Allura’s hand. “I chose this future, didn’t I? I’m not giving up so easily.”

        Watching Allura become used to Earth customs was honestly hilarious to watch. They ended up enrolled in a local college- all of them, so they could get back into the swing of being human and normal and not saviors of the universe.

        Allura proved to be exceptionally smart, and caught on to the lessons easily. But on top of that, she was pretty and popular. And exotic .

        Which meant she was sought after- a lot.

        “I’m sorry, but I’m already with someone,” Allura told one of the young men from her classes.

        “Who?” he questioned.

        Pidge through the door just then, and Allura grabbed her hand. “Katie.”

        The guy’s eyes bulged and Pidge sent him a smirk, internally feeling extremely proud of the fact she was dating someone like Allura.

        “And don’t you forget it,” Pidge said, kissing Allura’s cheek.

        Alfor was just a baby when Pidge found him. So tiny and helpless. But covered in bruises and grim.

        She was just months shy of eighteen, but was going to do everything in her power to get him out of there. Anyone who touched her child would regret it with every fiber of their being by the time Pidge was done with them.

        It was through this same process that Pidge found Charles and Cera. They were a bit older than Alfor, but Pidge wasn’t even close to not trying to get them.

        Pidge held baby Alfor in her arms. He had been placed in her care for the duration of the adoption process due to his treatment at his foster home.

        “I didn’t even ask if you wanted kids…” Pidge said while Alfor slept on. “I’m… sorry, about that. But I’m not giving them up. I just… these kids. They need someone. And I’d like to give them their best chance.”

        Allura grabbed onto Pidge’s hand. “And I’ll be right here the entire time,” she vowed.

        Allura deserved all the pretty things in life. Diamonds and flowers and pearls, but their marriage wasn’t quite so lovely as Pidge wished it could be. At the time, they were more focused on getting the three children adjusted to a good life with loving parents.

        Charles was a bit standoffish and didn’t like anyone around Cera. He didn’t trust grownups. It took quite a while to get him used to being around Pidge and Allura, but both of them were patient people.

        Alfor cried at night. Nightmares that he couldn’t put into words, even at the age of one and a half.

        But working with him patiently quickly got him up to speed, and even beyond.

        While Charles may not have liked grown ups around Cera, Cera had certainly taken a liking to Allura. Especially the marks on Allura’s face. She loved to reach up and touch them, marveling.

        Pidge could honestly say she felt the same, about their whole family situation.

        The three children were honestly perfect for the parents. Because they all loved to learn .

        Alfor didn’t exactly love school like Charles did, but he knew more random facts about machinery and the rain forests that kids grades above him.

        Cera loved building and inventing and looking at new ways to make things. One of her favorite pastimes was taking things apart only to put them back together.

        And Charles… he loved to read . He always had his nose in a book. History, science, fiction, non-fiction. It didn’t matter, as long as it had words.

        It was a good trade, Pidge would often find herself thinking.

        A newly thirteen year old Charles, ten year old Cera, and nine year old Alfor were at the park with Allura and Pidge.

        Allura and Pidge sat on a picnic table with their lunch spread around them while the kids played in the grass a few feet away.

        Cera cheered as Alfor blocked Charles’ kick of their soccarball. A chill ran down Pidge’s spine as Alfor kicked the ball over to Cera. Pidge stood and headed over to them.

        “I’ll be back,” she said, her feet moving more than she could think.

        Cera kicked the ball, and it flew past Charles and into the street.

        “I’ll get it!” Cera called, only to be forcefully grabbed back by the back of her collar.

        “No, I’ll get it,” Pidge said, pushing Cera behind her. “I don’t know how many times you’ve been told not to go into the road.”

        Pidge stepped at the edge of the road, waiting for the single car to speed by before jogging to the ball and bringing it back.

        “Hey, it’s time for lunch anyway,” she said as she came back.

        The kids whined, but followed after Pidge to the picnic table. She felt a lightness in her chest, and couldn't help the grin on her features as she held the ball out of the reach of Cera and Alfor- Charles was already taller than her, and could have easily grabbed it, though he refrained from doing so. Allura greeted them with a smile.

        Alfor scarfed down his food and ran off to the playground, Cera hot on his heels. Charles ate slower, but joined them soon as well. Leaving the adults to their own devices.

        “What do you look so happy about?” Allura asked.

        Pidge grinned brightly. “Crisis averted,” she said. “Things… can change.” She grabbed onto Allura’s hand, entwining their fingers. She rubbed a thumb over Allura’s wedding ring. “Marry me again?” she asked. “I want to give you the wedding you deserve.”

        Allura smiled at Pidge. “I’m happy as we are,” she said, squeezing Pidge’s hand. “But I would marry you as many times as you want. I love you.”

        “Good,” Pidge claimed with a smirk. “Because I love you too, and you’re stuck with me for the rest of time.”

        And if the children squealed and shouted about how gross they were being- well, that was just all the better to tease them, wasn't it?

Chapter Text

        The doors opened behind Pidge, and she turned to see Keith walk in. Sweat dripped down his neck and made his shirt cling to his chest. And he still carried his sword.

        His breath came out heavy when he spoke. “What is it?” he questioned. Then he shook his head, trying to make the words come out in a softer form, but didn’t go too well. “I- It’s- I don’t- If it’s some kind of nightmare things or something, Shiro or Allura or Lance is better at this than I am-”

        “It wasn’t a nightmare,” Pidge said, grabbing onto Keith’s upper arm firmly. He looked at her and she grinned.

        Then she punched him.


        In the gut.

        “Hey- Hey! Ow!”

        “You stupid- reckless- idiotic- hot heated- ” each word was accentuated by a punch to his gut “-fool!”

        “What did I do? What did I do?!”

        Pidge never did get around to telling Keith about the soarta after that…

        Pidge knew, without a doubt, that Keith was possibly one of the most hot headed people on the team. The only one that even came close was Pidge herself, and she knew that.

        Which also meant she knew that any sort of relationship between the two was not going to end up easy. That didn’t stop Pidge from fantasizing.

        Or keeping an eye on the idiot.

        He was seriously an idiot, too.

        Right before her eyes, Pidge watched as Keith’s ship flew out of the castle. She watched was Lance and Hunk ran to their lions to follow him.

        Pidge was on her feet in seconds, running to her own lion.

        “Pidge, wait!” Allura called, grabbing onto Pidge’s arm. “What are you doing? We can’t leave the castle so defenseless-”

        “I’m not leaving it defenseless,” Pidge bit out, pulling her arm away. “I’m bring them back and stopping Keith from doing something incredibly stupid.”

        Without another word, Pidge jumped down to her lion and was off.

        She launched into the sky, speeding as fast as she could towards the two lions and smaller ship. She rounded in front of them, her features set. She gripped the handles so tightly that her knuckles were white.

        “Turn back,” she ordered over the com.

        “Pidge, get out of the way,” Keith seethed as he moved to go around her, but Pidge only swerved in front of him again.

        “Turn back,” she repeated.

        Keith hissed. “Pidge, this is our chance. We can really do something-”

        “This is not the time!” she shouted, shaking fully now. “Go back to the castle, now . We’re not prepared and we don’t know what’s happening on the other side. We need to wait.”


        “So help me, Keith, if you do not turn back willingly right now , I will forcefully take you in this lion’s jaws and tie you up once we get back to the castle.”

        The two ships seemed to have a staring contest, and Pidge tensed and prepared to strike as Keith’s began to move. But it turned in place and headed back for the castle.

        A private com message popped up from Lance and Pidge opened it.

        “How’d you get him to do that?” Lance asked. “The whole time we were out here, he wouldn’t budge.”

        Pidge rolled her eyes and let out a huff of annoyance. “You’re too much of a pushover.”

        “Hey, I am not a pusho-” Pidge closed the link before heading back to the castle, the other two in tow.

        It wasn’t until she’d been laying in bed for what felt like several hours that it finally hit Pidge what she did.

        Her eyes widened to an impossible size and she almost fumbled out of bed at the realization.

        She’d changed things. Maybe it was a different battle Keith had talked about. Maybe this was an insignificant one that would have been a proper victory for their side. Maybe it played out exactly how it had in her dream.

        But still, in the core of Pidge’s being, she felt like something had changed .

        The war ended and no one was dead.

        Well, there were quite a few dead, actually, but those who mattered to Pidge were alive and kicking.

        At times, literally. She and Lance at times could get ridiculous in their foot fights. They usually had to be physically pulled apart by Hunk or Shiro or both.

        Pidge would then just proceed to go pester Keith and tease him in all her Pidge like saltiness. He only seemed mildly put off by her words, until Pidge would smirk and he’d know she was just messing with him.

        It was good times.

        The paladins went back to Earth, and they all went their separate ways for the most part. Lance went off to Cuba, Hunk to Hawaii, Shiro joined the army and was shipped off who knows where. Allura and Coran had chosen to remain ins space.

        Leaving Keith and Pidge.

        Pidge could have gone back home to her parents, which she did for a while, but Keith had nowhere. And Pidge got antsy.

        “What do you say about going around the world?” she asked him one day. “We’ve seen a lot in space, but when you think about it, we’ve barely seen a fraction of our own planet.”

        Keith raised an eyebrow at her while taking a drink of whatever he’d ordered. The he smirked as he set the cup down.

        “I’m in.”

        Pidge was at times grateful for his reckless, “screw everyone else, let’s do it” attitude.

        With nothing but Keith’s motorbike, a pack of essentials for each, a pack of cigarettes between them, and some money, the two were on their way.

        China, Japan, Peru, Afghanistan, Ireland, France, England, India, Italy, Germany, half of America- for the better portion of five years, the two of them traveled relentlessly. They visited their friends spontaneously, and a couple of times made new ones along the way.

        Keith was still awful at talking to people, and ended up the cause of several humorous mixups throughout their ‘round-the-world trips.

        The trips were filled with new foods- much better than the food goo- and music and laughter and experiences, among them being crummy hotels and learning weird tribal dances and getting matching tattoos on their lower backs and the several times Keith’s bike broke down and they had to walk it to the nearest village or town and wait for a mechanic to come fix it up.

        The first time they slept together, it had been a total accident. They’d both gotten a little too drunk off the fresh wine from a small, forgotten town in the middle of nowhere in Italy.

        The next morning had led to several confessions on both sides. Though much of the actual conversation was forgotten due to both having severe migraine, the meaning and feelings felt by both remained.

        When the sun was shining brightly in the mid afternoon and they were both taking in a lazy lunch before they left, they made a plan to see how many places they could do it in a year.

        Pidge could never remember if she got pregnant in London or Belgium.

        When they found out that Pidge was pregnant, neither of them were quite traveled out. But for the sake of the kid, they decided it was best to settled down for a while.

        They went out with a bang, though. A wedding tradition they’d learned while traveling that consisted of jumping over a broom was all their ceremony was. But the after party was good, with several foods from the different continents and multiple different drinks. They’d even managed to get everyone onto the same piece of land for it.

        As Keith and Pidge danced away to the tribal music on the beach with the sun setting behind them, Pidge couldn’t believe she had the ability to be any happier.

        Pidge wasn’t very large, even at seven months, and was still as active as ever. She and Keith had moved into his old house in the desert and were in the process of cleaning and dusting everything off. Within the week, they’d be having people to come check on the electricity and plumbing, and then different things they’d ordered to be placed in the house. (The first thing Pidge insisted on was an AC, because she was not doing that again. Even if she was only able to change little things, she would have always chosen the AC)

        “What kind of names do you think would work?” Pidge asked as she dusted off the kitchen table. “I mean, we’ve been so many places that have so many different names that have a lot of different meanings. There’s a lot to choose from.”

        “Robyn,” Keith said automatically, without hesitation.

        Pidge gawked at Keith. “ Why ?” she asked.


        “ What ?”

        Keith rolled his eyes. “No, pidge ,” he said. “Pigeon? Robyn?”

        Pidge smacked her face. “Oh my god. I would have expected that from Lance , not from you!”

        Keith only laughed before pulling Pidge onto the couch with him. “I’m always red, you’re a bit of a bird-”

        “Are you calling me bird brained?”

        “Your words, not mine.” The comment had Pidge smacking Keith before they both looked at each other and broke out in laughter. “I just thought- red robin. It felt fitting. They’d have a bit of both of us, and it’s a fairly unisex name so it works for whatever’s in there.”

        “A baby’s in there, Keith. I’m not having a gorilla.”

        “Who knows, you might be having a galra-”

        “Shut up, Keith.”

        Robyn Kogane was born in the summer heat, both of her parents happy and overjoyed to see her for the first time.

        That night, after they’d gone home and Robyn was in bed, Pidge dragged Keith out to the porch and danced with him to no music except that of the breeze.

        They slow danced together, their bodies pressed close.

        Pidge stood up on her tiptoes to touch her nose to Keith’s as the breeze rustled past them and a coyote howled in the distance.

        “I’m glad things changed to the way they did,” she murmured.

        “Me too.”

        Their lips touched, and Pidge’s mind rested easy knowing that, because of the way things turned out, all was well.

Chapter Text

        There was a rail by the windows looking out to the stars. Pidge leaned against it as she waited.

        She wasn’t going to tell him. She’d finally decided on that. She wasn’t going to tell him because, okay, maybe it was a little selfish of her, but she wanted to experience everything as if it were happening for the first time.

        “What you thinking about?”

        Pidge almost jumped right out of her skin when Lance asked the question and leaned on the rail by her. Pidge breathed a sigh of relief at who it was.

        She looked down to her hands. “Just… missing home, I guess. I know you know how that feels.”

        Lance nodded slowly, looking out to the stars. “Yeah, I do.”

        “Could you… tell me what it’s like? Your version of home.”

        Lance looked over and gave Pidge a soft grin. “Only if you tell me yours.”

        Pidge returned the smile. “It’s a deal.”

        Several moments in her life, Pidge had known what it felt like to be an outcast.

        Much of her school career because she was smart. Half the time with the rest of the paladins because she was a girl. And again with the team because she ran on logic more than emotions.

        But she’d never experienced the uselessness of being an outcast before. Not like Lance.

        So, okay, yes , it may have been partially pity that drove Pidge to let Lance hang around. But he wasn’t actually quite as stupid as he acted sometimes, and he was a good springboard to bounce ideas off of.

        Pidge actually, genuinely enjoyed his company.

        Sure, some of the better days were spent being Lance, Hunk, and herself, but the best were when it was just with Lance.

        The day they’d programed one of the robots to have “fun”, and then get chased all around the galra castle- it was an exhilarating day. Perhaps one of the best when, mid-laugh, Lance put a hand on Pidge’s cheek and kissed her.

        That stopped her laughter, and she looked at Lance with owl like eyes. He squeaked and jumped to the other side of the closet, his cheeks burning.

        “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to! It was just- I just- I don’t-”

        Pidge took ahold of his arm and gave him a look. “Did you see me complaining?” she demanded. Lance quickly shook his head. “Good. Now, are you going to kiss me again or what?”

        Lance took the first option.

        Pidge would say that life back on Earth after they returned was bland, except that with Lance’s family, it was never bland.

        Pidge had been accepted into the McClain family as easily as Lance had been accepted into the Holt. Even if was a bit embarrassing to have Mama McClain insinuate marriage and grandbabies in the near future.

        Lance turned into a puddle of goo even worse than Pidge did at his mother’s teasing and the laughter of his siblings. The distressed noises Lance kept making made Pidge laugh as well and relive her embarrassment.

        Lance pouted in Pidge’s direction. “Well, I’m glad someone is enjoying themselves,” he complained. Pidge sat on her heels in front of him, lightly pressing their lips together (earning some catcalls from the extended family).

        She grinned. “Yeah, because I’m with you.”

        He melted into even more goo.

        Pidge was never one to back down from a challenge, and she’d become the master of driving if it meant avoiding any possible crashes that would take away twelve years of her freakin’ life.

        After the first couple of test runs, Hunk had stopped riding with them. Lance stuck with her, instructing her as best he could (apparently he’d known how to drive since he was twelve- lucky bastard), but he often looked a little uneasy.

        “There’s this thing called taxis,” he said after one particularly rough ride.

        Pidge gritted her teeth. “ No . I have to learn how to drive.”

        Lance let out a sigh, placing his hands over Pidge’s own. “Then I guess, for starters, your hands are holding on too tight. You’re not trusting yourself, which is why you’re making so many mistakes. You learn the basics and everything else becomes more natural, and you don’t have to think about every step.”

        Pidge nodded, taking in a deep breath. “Yeah. Okay. Let’s try it.”

        Everything about Lance and his way of romance was several layers of cheese and just a little bit of whine. He’d denying any and all whining, but half of the time that was the only way he could get Pidge on board to do some of the more… embarrassing things.

        So Pidge was only a little bit surprised when he pulled out a ring on Valentine’s day. After several minutes of whacking him and questioning why he had to be such a cheese ball, Pidge said yes and allowed Lance to slip the ring onto her finger.

        The wedding took place on the beach. Her dress was simple, with a flowy, almost transparent top layer to the skirt that was easily lifted behind her by the sea breeze. Her veil was attached to a crown made of small shells on the back of her head and fell down to her knees though it didn’t cover her face, and she wore an arm band on her upper arm made of swirling silver.

        What no one else knew was that as she walked down the carpeted aisle to Lance, was that she didn’t wear any shoes.

        Pidge felt happy, surrounded by friends and family on all sides. The world was safe, she was safe. They all were.

        And she was marrying this dork who’d make her smile and laugh for the rest of her life.

        She’d chosen well.

        Pidge and Lance didn’t really try for the first year of their marriage for a child, but then Pidge started getting antsy. She liked how things were in the house Lance’s family had built for them, but she missed Nico and Mattie. And she wanted Lance to finally meet them, too.

        But she couldn’t seem to get pregnant.

        Though it wasn’t like it was a perfect compromise, Lance brought home a puppy one day. “Rover two-point-oh,” he said said, chuckling a bit. The puppy ran right up to Pidge and jumped into her lap while barking happily.

        Pidge laughed as she hugged the dog licking all over her face.

        “Aren’t you just a cutie,” she said, rubbing and scratching him all over. He only got even more excited.

        Pidge grinned as Lance sat down by her on the couch. She curled into his side, Rover 2.0 between them. He licked Lance’s hand before curling into a ball. Pidge laid her head on Lance’s shoulder.

        “This is great, Lance,” she said. “You didn’t have to.”

        Lance kissed the top of her head. “I know it’s not an actual baby, but I know dogs just love to be babied,” he said.

        Pidge laughed into his shoulder. “You’re right,” she mused playfully. Then she laughed again, a bit quieter. “I didn’t get to tell you because I just found out today but- I think I’m pregnant.”

        Oranges, chocolate, and Mountain Dew were the only things Pidge wanted during her first pregnancy. Chocolate covered oranges were best, but sometimes mixing chocolate syrup and orange juice into Mountain Dew also sated her cravings.

        Lance looked sick every time he watched her eat- or drink, for that matter.

        He was severely glad when the cravings stopped and Pidge was back to eating regular meals again. She did still enjoy the chocolate oranges, but Lance couldn’t particularly fault her. Everyone had that one weird food they liked.

        After 18 hours of labor, Mathew “Mattie” McClain was born.

        Just the sweetest little bundle of sunshine Pidge had ever seen. She held him close, running the back of her hand over his features time and time again, trying to imprint them into her memory so she’d never, ever forget.

        She couldn’t imagine she’d be able to.

        But then again… you never knew.

        Mattie was closing in on two years old when Pidge found out she was pregnant again.

        “Mattie, how do you feel about having a little brother?” she asked him while they played together in the toy room.

        “I wan’ a little sis’er,” he said, not looking up from his blocks.

        Pidge almost laughed, but managed to contain it as she placed another block on top of his tower. “Why a sister?” she asked.

        “‘Cause then I could be the cool older brother and protect her,” he said, staring intently at the tower. He tilted his head side to side before placing one final brick with a flag attached at the top. He broke out in a big grin at his accomplishment.

        “You know, you could always be the cool older brother to a little brother,” Pidge told him. “Because he’d be younger than you. You’d know a lot more stuff than he did, and you’d have to protect him for a while, you know?”

        Mattie nodded, going over and grabbing his cars. “Kay.” He held a green one to Pidge. “I still want a little sister, too.”

        Pidge couldn’t hold it in this time. She laughed until it drew the attention of Lance from his study across the hall.

        With Nico, Pidge had fairly normal cravings. She’d eat most of what she’d eaten before pregnancy, but all her vegetables had to be steamed. No ifs, ands, or buts about it.

        And to top if off, he came about a month before his due date, and took less than an hour to come out. Completely healthy and developed, he was a bit larger than Mattie had been when he was born.

        After everything was all cleaned up, Mattie was allowed into the room, following after Lance. Lance helped him climb up onto Pidge’s bed, and Pidge positioned herself so he could see the baby.

        She smiled. “Mattie, this is your little brother, Nico,” she said.

        Mattie’s eyes got wide and he grinned toothily at Pidge. “I’ma be the bestest big brother in the whole world!” he exclaimed, despite Lance’s efforts to shush him. “We gonna play cars and I’m gonna teach him how to build really tall towers!”

        Pidge laughed, her eyes shining as she looked at her son. “So, you’re happy with him, huh?” she asked.

        Mattie nodded, curling up on Pidge’s other side and looking across her at the sleeping baby. “Mama?”


        “So when do I get a little sister?”

        Time seemed to pass in a breeze. In a blink of an eye. Before Pidge knew it, Mattie was starting school.

        It was seriously an odd thing to think about. Her little baby. Growing up so fast.

        Nico cried and said he wanted to go to school as well, but Mattie stood with a hand on his hip and pointed at Nico and said “No way! You can’t go to school yet! I’ve gotta go first and learns of stuff so I can show you how to do it!”

        Nico looked up to Mattie with shining eyes and Pidge dragged a hand down her face. She smiled regardless before ushering Mattie out the door so he wouldn’t be late on his first day of school.

        Lance was a popular author, and often got calls at the most random of times from his editors and publishers. Thankfully, it usually happened when he wasn’t driving. But if he was expecting a call, he wouldn’t drive and Pidge took the wheel.

        It made things easier on everyone if he could focus on his work and Pidge focused on the road and he surroundings. She still preferred to be in the passenger seat, but could take the wheel if it was demanded.

        Soon enough, Nico’s first day of school had arrive as well. Five years old, and Mattie at seven. Both boys were excited, and jumped around the entire time Pidge and Lance took them around the school for registration.

        As Pidge picked up a form from one of the tables about carpooling students in the school sports, a long forgotten memory.

        Wasn’t there a crash before this?

        “Something wrong?” Lance asked, coming up behind Pidge and putting a hand on her waist. Pidge sent him a smile before placing form back down.

        “Nah. Just thinking about something from our Voltron days, is all.” She entwined her hands with Lance’s, turning back to him and kissing his cheek. “But also… didn’t Mattie want a little sister?”

        Lance balked at Pidge before laughing. “Yeah, I think that’s a promise overdue,” he said. “Think we’d get him one by Christmas?”

        Pidge laughed into his chest. “Maybe a physical one by his birthday.”

        The two were dragged away by the calls of Mattie and Nico from over by some of Mattie’s friends.

        Maybe it’d just been a dream back then, or maybe things had changed. Either way, this was Pidge’s life. And she was going to hold onto it with everything she had.

Chapter Text

        Pidge stood in the observatory, looking out to the stars, when the door opened.

        She turned as the others walked in. Allura, Shiro, Hunk, Keith, Lance. All of them. Coran was trailing after them as well, but he often did that, and it would be a good thing to hear what was about to happen.

        Pidge was probably crazy for what she was about to do. Definitely crazy. But she hadn’t really been able to make a whole lot of choices while in space. A lot of things just sort of happened .

        She could be selfish for once.

        “What is it you needed, Pidge?” Shiro asked.

        Pidge cleared her throat. “So, first off, Hunk, my buddy, my man, you were right about the future fruit. It works.” She stood in front of him and grinned. “I dreamed some interesting future options last night.” Then she glared and punched him in the gut. “ That’s for the sheer amount of freakin’ kids.” Then Lance. “ That’s for being a bad driver.” Keith. “ That’s for being a reckless idiot.” Shiro. “ That’s for leaving me alone.”

        Her fist wavered by Allura. She looked up and tilted her head.

        “You know, besides the dead kid thing I didn’t really have too much of a problem you. Huh.”

        Lance was still doubled over and being melodramatic from Pidge’s punch and Keith was rubbing his side when Pidge moved back to look at them all.

        “I’m still confused as to what’s going on,” Shiro claimed.

        “It’s the sorta ,” Allura explained, practically glowing. She clapped her hands. “Pidge ate some last night and dreamed of some of the future options she had.”

        Pidge nodded and pointed to each of them in turn. “I had a future of every single freakin’ one of you,” she claimed. “But as I was told, the future isn’t a guaranteed thing so things can change. Therefore ! I’m taking every single one of you.”

        Lance practically fell over with all the force he used to stand straight. His jaw was dropped so far Pidge was surprised it wasn’t on the floor. “Wait, you mean-”

        “ All of you ,” Pidge said, a bit darkly.

        “We don’t get a choice-?” Keith began.

        “Nope. None. Not at all. You’re mine.” Her face fell just a bit, her confidence dropping a fraction. “You’re all fine with that, right?”

        “On Altea it was not uncommon for royalty to have a spouse and then others, including some of the same sex, in a relationship,” Coran explained, rubbing his mustache.

        “This would not be abnormal for me, and I would not be opposed,” Allura said with a smile. She smiled at Pidge and Pidge let out a long sigh of relief. Allura looked over to Coran with a teasing smirk. “After all, Coran, you were part of-”

        “Princess! This is most certainly not the time!” Coran fumbled and turned red as Pidge faced the others.

        “Oh come on, did people think Uncle Theo, Aunt Margo, and Uncle Rick were a relationship and a third wheel?” Lance asked. “I’m game!”

        “There’s been weirder things in this universe,” Keith claimed with a rolls of his eyes.

        “Well, I mean, I’m not opposed, I just don’t know how to deal with it because I’ve never thought about it before but-” Pidge gave Hunk a deadpan look and he gulped. “It could be fun?”

        Shiro looked at the others as they stared at him, waiting for his answer. “We’ll see how it goes,” he said heavily.

        Lance turned back to Pidge. “So that means we’re in just one big poly relationship?” Lance clarified. Pidge nodded. He grinned over at Allura. “So that means I have the ability to kiss any one of you right now ?”

        Allura frowned then sighed. “Yes, but let’s hold off on that for now, Lance,” she said.

        Lance gave a mock gasp. “You’re gorgeous and all but I didn’t mean you at the moment. I’ve been wanting to do this since the Garrison.”

        Lance wrapped an arm around Keith’s waist and pulled him into a kiss. Keith turned bright red at the contact and Pidge burst out laughing.

        Oooooh yeah, this would be fun.

        Honestly , the best part of being in one big relationship while up in space was the reactions of the aliens. So many different customs.

        Well, and the actual being in the relationship part. They each had their merits, and Pidge couldn’t exactly complain about it.

        Her dad’s reaction to it was priceless. Adding to the fact he had The Talk with each of the boys (and Allura, couldn’t forget about her even though she was perfectly ladylike) about dating his daughter and treating her right, but was otherwise was okay with it, just melted Pidge’s heart.

        And punching out the fake Shiro, then bringing the real one into the whole thing. He looked the most confused out of them all.

        Well, okay, there wasn't just one good part then. It was all great.

        Obviously, the first thing they did when they returned to Earth was find their respective families. After that, it was a bit difficult to decide where to go from there.

        But they’d make do.

        They decided to make their home in a fairly large house in a port town. It had the charm of the one Pidge had seen in Lance’s lifetime, but also had the functionality of Allura’s. It would be perfect for the kids.

        Which Pidge was determined to have every single one of. She even had it all mapped out as to who she needed to have sex with and when in order to have them.

        “You’re going to exhaust your body and you’re going to end up getting hurt and-” Hunk wailed when Pidge showed him and Lance the plans. Everyone else would come later.

        “And aren’t we forgetting something, I don’t know, vaguely important?” Lance asked, tapping his fingers on his elbows.

        Pidge tilted her head. “What?” she questioned.

        Lance pinched his brow. “It starts with a ‘W’,” he prompted. Pidge only started at him owlishly. He sighed dramatically. “Wedding, Pidge! Wedding!”

        Pidge gawked. “Are you- did you just ask me to marry you?!” she exclaimed, almost falling out of her chair.

        “Well, in simple terms, yes,” Lance said. “I mean, we’ve been doing the frickle frackle for years now-”

        “ Sex , Lance. Use the word. We’ve been having sex.”

        “-but wouldn’t it be nice to actually be married?” he continued as if Pidge hadn’t interrupted him.

        Pidge turned to Hunk and he had turned red. She looked back to Lance. “... Seriously?” she asked. Lance nodded. He took one of her hands.

        “There’s nothing I’d love more than to marry you,” he claimed. He grinned brightly and took one of Hunk. “And of course this big guy. And Allura. And Shiro.”

        “And Keith?”

        “No, that bastard can just sit in the pews while the rest of us get married.”

        Pidge punched Lance’s stomach lightly while laughing. The others laughed as well and Hunk grabbed her hand.

        “I wouldn’t mind us all getting married,” Pidge said, looking down to their entwined hands. “It would be… I don’t know, maybe more official?”

        “Try the next step to our adventure,” Hunk offered. He turned a bit serious. “And just so you know, I will be worrying for you the rest of your life.”

        Pidge leaned over and lightly kissed his cheek. “I knew that already.”

        “Well, now that that’s all discussed,” Lance said, standing, “we’ve got to do the cheesy romantic proposal to the others!”

        “And we’re not forgetting Keith,” Hunk stated, giving Lance a hard look.

        Lance placed a hand over his heart and gave a melodramatic gasp. “As if I’d ever forget the love of my life!”

        “I thought I was the love of your life.”

        “Didn’t you know? I have five.”

        Pidge, Hunk, and Lance’s proposal was well planned out. It was date night for all of them, so the three took the others out to a fancy restaurant. Nice clothes, a good dinner, they’d even bought rings.

        It was just after desert when Pidge gave the signal. They all pulled out the rings, sliding the open boxes across the table.

        “Wanna get married?” Pidge asked.

        Allura, Keith, and Shiro all looked at each other and laughed. They each pulled out boxes of their own and slide them across the table.

        “Does that give you your answer?” Allura asked, grinning ear to ear, her eyes sparkling.

        The wedding was a beautiful affair.

        They held it out in the gazebo on their property. Flowers lined the aisle. Lance, Shiro, Hunk, and Keith were all dressed in similar suits while Allura and Pidge wore their own dresses. Both looked like princesses.

        Charlie, Cera, and Alfor sat in the pews with Pidge’s parents.

        After rigorous searching, they’d finally managed to find the three. No one could be happier with the arrangement.

        It may have been long, with how many people needed to say their vows, but it was worthwhile.

        “In any lifetime, I was more than lucky to have met each and every one of you,” Pidge said in her own, eyes going teary. “I don’t think I could have been happier.”

        Unsurprising to them all was that Coran cried the most.

        “Yes! Yes!”

        The cheer from the upstairs bathroom could be hear all the way in the large living room where Shiro sat reading the newspaper and Allura was curled up next to Hunk. (Lance and Keith were God knows where- probably together, though)

        Pidge’s footsteps pounded on the ground until she came sliding in through the open door on the wood floor.

        She was beaming brightly. “It said positive!” she exclaimed. “I’m pregnant!”

        Immediately Shiro was on his feet and spinning Pidge. Pidge laughed like a child.

        “We’re going to be parents!” she shouted joyfully. “ Parents !”

        “Pidge, I really think you should stop-”

        “What? No. I’ve still got Robyn and the triplets and the quads- crap . We never gave them names!”

        “Pidge, please .”

        “So why is it exactly that we’ve never gone to your house before?” Hana asked, tilting her head.

        Charlie laughed self consciously and rubbed the back of his head. “Well…”

        Cera rolled her eyes. “You could just tell her,” she claimed.

        Charlie heaved a long breath and stopped at the front door. “Don’t say I didn’t warn you…” he muttered, pushing it in.

        “Mattie! Stop antagonizing Cienna!”

        “Daddy! Papa! Opal won’t give me my slippers back and we’ve gotta go now !”

        “Keith, do you know where I left my case folder? I can’t seem to find it.”

        “Um, Theo might have it?”

        Hana stared wide eyed at the chaos just in the front room. Allura rushed out of the room, wearing her work suit. Keith was holding Opal up while Chloe, Cienna, and Mattie ran around his feet. Lance came through and kissed Keith’s cheek.

        “I’ll see you tonight,” he promised. “Allura! We gotta go or we’ll miss the train!”

        “Coming, coming,” Allura said, coming back in and holding a colored on folder. She too kissed Keith’s cheek before taking Lance’s arm. “Tonight, then.”

        Lance grinned brightly at Charlie and Cera. “Hey kiddos. You’ll have to introduce us later, but we’ve gotta go. Cienna, Chloe!”

        “Coming!” the twins chorused.

        As the four burst out of the house, Hana turned to Charlie with her jaw dropped. “How large of a family did you say you had again?”

        “A lot of siblings, four dads, and two moms,” Charlie said exhaustedly.

        “With four more kiddos on the way, but this is definitely the last one.”

        They turned as Pidge came down the stairs groaning. She was fairly large already, but they were quads, so that was expected.

        “Hi,” Pidge said with a smirk. “Hana, right?”

        Hana looked from Pidge to Charlie. She folded her arms and gave him a similar smirk. “You’ve talk about me?” she teased. Charlie went bright red.

        “Wha- Um, I don- I don’t know what you’re talking about!” he exclaimed quickly.

        Nico rushed out of the next room over and attached himself to Pidge. He grabbed onto her pants. “Mama, I gotta tell you a secret,” he stage whispered. Pidge rolled her eyes but smiled and got down on her knees so Nico could whisper in her ear. “I love you, Mama.”

        He giggled and ran away once again. Pidge’s eyes sparkled. She stood- with minimal effort- and turned to the others. “Well, are you coming in or not?” she questioned. “Hunk’s just finished his cookies.”

        Life was, of course, not quite as simple as one might think.

        Every choice you take leads you on a different path. Every decision. Every thought. Every movement.

        Things were not perfect for the household- so many children and hotheaded adults in one house can get a little messy- but happiness doesn’t care for numbers or norms.

        Pidge had woken up in a different world where she’d made different decisions, and in the end chose the one that she didn’t know what she was doing.

        But where’s the fun in knowing everything that’s going to happen?

        It takes all the fun out of the adventure.