Good evening, dear readers! Maude here, Mt. Geneva’s hidden historian, with another little family update for you. My, how those tiny tots do grow! They’re blossoming into adults all over the place. Today we’ll see Ferris Blakemore cross the momentous bridge into the perils and pleasures of adulthood…
I could tell that Ferris was a bit apprehensive on the eve of her birthday. She spent most of the night on the telephone calling all of her dearest friends and telling them how much she’d miss them. Since they were all a bit younger than Ferris, they wouldn’t be going off to college with her. She would be embarking on this new journey alone. Good thing her destination was only a mile or so from home! She had an inkling, though, of how different it would be, and just how much she was leaving behind.
The next night, Tess invited all of Ferris’s friends over, including her steady beau George McCarthy, and picked up a cake from the new bakery downtown. She had wanted to bake one from scratch, but between working overtime and making wedding plans, she just didn’t have the time.
Ferris didn’t mind about the cake at all. She loved parties and was simply overjoyed to see all of her friends in attendance.
With the light from the candles dancing about the room, Ferris looked over at her boyfriend George and gave him a smile. He stared back at her with a hint of sadness in his eyes, but nodded his head, urging her to go on.
Ferris took a deep breath, made her birthday wish, and blew out the candles. Everyone cheered, naturally, and some even whirled noisemakers about their heads. Tess looked on proudly as her daughter spun around, growing taller and taller before her very eyes. Finally the transformation was complete — Ferris had grown up!
All of her friends gathered around to hug her and wish her well, except for George. He shuffled forlornly over to the sofa and sat down. He wished he could grow up right this instant, so he could be with Ferris, but he knew it wasn’t going to happen for a long, long time.
Ferris was so busy eating cake and talking to Stewart about her college plans that she didn’t notice George sitting on the couch in a haze of melancholy.
“Make sure you take a class or two from Professor Mosely,” Stewart was saying. “He and I used to be on the same bowling league back in SimCity.”
Meadow appeared at the table and gave Ferris a wide-eyed look.
“What?” Ferris asked. She had no idea why Meadow was giving her that look.
Meadow simply nodded her head in the direction of the couch. Ferris turned around and saw George sitting there, just staring out the window, even though Ricky was trying to talk to him. Ferris rose from the table and called George over.
“You didn’t give me a birthday hug,” she said.
George shrugged and looked down at his shoes, not saying anything.
“I’m really going to miss you,” she said then, taking one of his hands. They felt so small now. “I’ll call you, OK?”
George nodded, looking more miserable than ever. It made Ferris’s heart hurt. With a wistful sigh, she stretched out her arms and pulled George in for a hug. He hugged her back warmly, not wanting to let go.
“Come on,” Ferris finally said, pulling back. “Let’s dance!” George smiled weakly but obliged.
They all gabbed and danced for hours until Tess called it a night and sent everyone home. Ferris lingered in the front yard to wave goodbye to everyone, then changed into her new pajamas and climbed into bed, sending up one more little birthday wish.
“I want George to grow up quickly,” she whispered, “so he can go to college with me. If that isn’t possible, then I want to meet someone just like George at college, and I want George to meet someone that makes him happy.” With that, she turned over and fell asleep.
The next morning she awoke the smell of pancakes cooking on the stove. Quickly she showered and dressed, sitting down at the table just in time.
“It’s your going-away meal,” Tess said as she plopped a stack of golden brown pancakes onto Ferris’s plate. Ferris smiled and dug in hungrily.
They ate silently, just listening to the birds chirping through the open windows. Ferris helped her mom clean up the dishes afterwards.
“Better get your bags ready,” Tess said. “The cab will be here soon.”
Ferris got her bags and met her mom out on the lawn to wait for the cab. She wished her mom could take her to college herself, but she knew she was just too busy. They chatted until the taxi pulled up.
“Thanks for everything, Mom,” Ferris said, giving Tess a hug.
Tess squeezed her daughter tightly. “You know you can come home whenever you want. Be careful with those college boys!”
Ferris blushed and laughed. “Don’t worry, Mom. I’ll try to be good.”
As Ferris climbed into the cab and sped off, Tess waved goodbye, a lump forming in her throat. Somehow she had pulled it off. She had raised her little girl all by herself, and what a girl she had turned out to be! Friendly, confident, hard-working — the best parts of Tess with none of her shortcomings. Tess smiled, thinking briefly of Nick and wondering how he was doing. She flirted with the idea of giving him a call, then quickly quashed it, deciding instead to go into work early and take Stewart some breakfast.
And so this chapter of the Blakemores’ story ends, dear readers. Next time we see Ferris, she’ll be at the new Geneva College! What will happen when she meets her half-brother Rory Dobbins for the first time? And will she meet someone just like George and fall in love? Will she take any classes from Professor Mosely, Stewart’s old bowling buddy? Stay tuned!