It was Thanksgiving, where the entire Vaughn family was gathered in Elizabeth's childhood home, the one where her markings indicating how tall she was at each age were etched into the door and the same place where she'd kissed her first boyfriend on the front porch before her dad turned the porch light on and the same exact place where the family would spend the holidays arguing over Monopoly pieces and who had actually purchased Marvin Gardens. It was home, and it always would be. Betty had arrived early with a specialized coffee for her parents and helped to peel potatoes at the sink while her mother filled her in on the neighborhood gossip: Mrs. Radachi was really letting her garden and her hair go while the Akers were doing renovations, the usual stuff.
All day long the excited butterflies fluttered in her stomach. She couldn't wait. The memory of how excited her parents had been when she'd been appointed with the Boston Police Department replayed in her mind, and she knew they would be as excited for her with her latest news.
It was tradition that her mother's family came over for Thanksgiving while the paternal siblings gathered for Christmas. So while family trickled in slowly, cousins and aunts and uncles commented on her appearance and how she looked too skinny before her mother could scold them to mind their own business and that she looked fine. "She's just been working a lot. You should see some of those guys on the force. They've really let themselves go." Her mother commented, and not a moment later her father stepped in with a, "If you're going to talk about me, you could at least wait until I was in the other room," and a light-hearted laugh to help ease the tension, a wink in his daughter's direction.
Her mother's brothers were both ex-college football players and typically didn't take shit from anyone but always made sure to interrogate anyone who was alone with them. As soon as Betty had walked back into the living room, they wanted details about the 'freak happenings' of the town just weeks prior. There weren't really answers to give them, and she wasn't about to let slip that she had been punched in the gut by a suspect and then let him go; the bruising had just faded, there was no way she was going to relive that.
So Betty gave them a story about how they honestly didn't know how it happened or what started it, but they had been working diligently to make sure everything was cleaned up so it wouldn't happen again. She had never been more grateful for her mother when she called everyone in for dinner.
The parade was long over and the family took up two elongated tables, her mother's knack for decoration and flash evident as the table gleamed with glittery gourds in unnecessary bowls, but it really made the evening beautiful.
"I am grateful for all of you being here. And I figured that this was as good of a time than any.." Betty paused and glanced towards her parents across the table from her, "to let you all know that I've been given a promotion." And there was a roar of congratulations that erupted around the table, leaving Betty grinning like an idiot. "I'm going to be working with the Homicide Department from now on. I'll have a really great partner and usually another detective.. I've met him before, he's been around a while. I'll learn a lot from him. And I get a rotating schedule and it'll be better hours over all." She explained because she felt like she had to, the attitude shift was almost physical after her specification.
"I'm really proud of you, Bets." Her dad raised his wine glass, and made a toast to Betty and her hard work with the police department and making sure she was keeping the city safe.