Goth: When her mother disappeared Cassandra quickly took the reigns at the Goth manor. Though she's a natural at caring for her eccentric father and quiet little brother this was not the family she'd hoped to start. In the years before Bella went missing, Cassandra met and proposed to Don Lothario on the whim of a girlish crush. Since then there have been postponements as well as a confusing friendship with Darren Dreamer. Don is the one Cassandra has invested so many hopes and plans in. The problem of course is how to give up the ghost? And Cassandra is afraid to lose such a valuable friend on her heart's whim. Sometimes Alexander watches the wedding preparations from his window but after almost four years of stopping and starting much of the excitement has passed. Now, Alex watches out of a sense of morbid curiosity. He enjoys spending time in his room with his pets composing music for his mother's return. The project has grown beyond the simple piece he'd composed right after she disappeared. When he begins to doubt her return he plays his violin and soothes his fears. Mortimer passes the time but he holds none of his son's naïve optimism about Bella's return. As her lifelong confidant he'd been privileged to her darkest confessions and deepest fears. Either she'd finally run wild as she'd sometimes dreamed of doing or something horrible had happened. Mortimer tries to be practical. To be logical. Of course he hired the best investigators to find his beloved wife but he's aware of the statistics on such matters so he keeps his mind busy and has finally learned how to silence the gnawing feeling of partial fear and overwhelming hope in his belly every time the phone rings or someone knocks at the door.
Pleasant: Though Daniel Pleasant has always had a roving eye he loved his wife and daughters. When they girls were still children he and Mary-Sue enjoyed each other's company but now they simmer in silent ambivalence. Though they struggled to juggle twin girls they both wanted another child--so they tried and Mary-Sue got pregnant. Unfortunately the pregnancy was incredibly difficult and their baby boy miscarried. Neither Mary-Sue nor Daniel handled the loss well. She threw herself into work and opened a chasm between herself and family life. As the girls grew older Mary-Sue realized she could find purpose in her work. Daniel just waited for the silence to pass hoping for Mary-Sue to take the first step. Now that the girls are in their teens, Daniel has begun to look for love and warmth elsewhere. The girls handled home life quite differently. Angela accepted her family's inherent instability when she was fairly young, even in good times she felt that her parents were badly matched. Mostly she wonders if they were ever really in love. Her coping strategies are from the Mary-Sue playbook, Angela throws herself into school and spends as much time at the Broke's house as possible. Lilith, on the other hand, was an overly sensitive child. Things that slide off Angela's back, Lilith tends to chew on. As a child she'd been excited about the prospect of a younger sibling. With no one at home to talk to and a boyfriend who spouts Landgraab trivia all day long, Lilith isn't sure what to do with her anger except to let it fester.