Just One Person
The night before Winterfest, Catherine and a group of children were sitting in Father's study watching an episode of The Muppets on a portable DVD player that Catherine had bought with Father's blessing. The children were laughing at the antics of Robin, Kermit's nephew, as the other characters pushed him out of the way as he got underfoot.
'Why are they doing that?" Eric asked.
"Robin is so small, Eric, that the others don't see him in time." Catherine tried to explain. She stopped and listened as Robin talked to their guest star, Bernadette Peters, about being ignored.
"Oh Robin, I didn't see you," Bernadette said as she noticed him under her arm.
"I know, that's what most people say. I'm running away from home, but I wanted to stop and say goodbye.''
"How come you're running away?"
"Cause nobody notices me. Nobody cares about a six ounce frog."
"Robin, you've got to believe in yourself." Bernadette told him. Then she softly started to sing..."If just one person believed in you..."
The children listened as the characters proved to Robin how much they cared about him.
"Wow, they really cared about him in the end," Eric grinned.
"They did, indeed," Father stated as he came up to the small group. "Are you children ready with your Winterfest presentation?"
"Yes, Father," Kipper told him. "We have one final rehearsal before tomorrow."
"I can't wait to see what you children have in store for us," Catherine said as she got to her feet.
"We better go find Brooke and
"We are so glad you decided to stay with us after your ordeal at your office, Catherine. The children have been looking forward to this year's Winterfest. They said they have something special planned." Father grazed Catherine's cheek with a gentle kiss.
"This is where I wanted to be, Father, no where else". Catherine gave him a soft smile. Vincent arrived shortly afterwards to escort them both to the dining chamber for dinner.
After dinner, the children stayed in the dining chamber to rehearse. Everything was going fine until Eric's solo in their final song. The other children weren't sure about Eric, but he promised them he could do it. Eric was extremely nervous about singing this part of the song, but seeing the confident look Vincent gave him, gave him the courage to sing his part pitch perfect.
"Beautiful, children, beautiful," Vincent praised them afterwards. "Everyone will be pleased. You should be proud of yourselves. You have a big day tomorrow so I will see you all then."
"Goodnight, Vincent," they told him.
Vincent wished them all goodnight, collected Catherine from Mary and retired to his chamber for some quiet reading.
Vincent looked up from reading the end of "Romeo and Juliet" to see Catherine asleep with her head against his shoulder. He gently kissed the top of her head, placed the book on the table near the head of his bed and wrapped both arms around Catherine to watch her sleep.
Father walked in a little while later and found both of them asleep. He grabbed the quilt at the foot of Vincent's bed and covered them both with it. He quietly left them to return to his own chamber.
* * *
Winterfest was in full swing when Father tapped his cane to gain everyone's attention. "The children have prepared a special surprise for us. Kipper, Samantha, the stage is yours." Father motioned the children to come forward.
The children's concert was going fine until it came time for their final song. Eric looked around nervously as everyone stared at him. Eric knew his part was coming up soon and then suddenly there was silence. Kipper poked him from behind. "Eric, go.."
"Eric, they're waiting," Samantha whispered. The other children tried to coax him as well to no avail. Eric just stood there.
Catherine left her seat and knelt next to Eric. "What's wrong, sweetheart?"
"I can't do this, Catherine."
'You can," she urged him.
"I can't," Eric began to cry softly.
"Eric, remember the Muppet show we watched yesterday with little Robin. Remember the song?" Eric nodded his head slowly. Catherine began to sing...
"If just one person believed in you,
Deep enough, and strong enough, believes in you...
Hard enough, and long enough,
It stands to reason, that someone else will think
If he can do it, I can do it
Making it, two whole people who believe in you...
Vincent came softly up behind them and knelt on the other side of Eric and started to sing along.
"Deep enough, and strong enough,
believe in you,
Hard enough and long enough
There's bound to be some other person who
believes in making it a threesome...
Father came up and put a hand on Eric's shoulder, joining in.
"making it three...
People you can say; believe in me.
And if three whole people...
Why not four? Mouse joins in.
And if four whole people,
Why not... more, Mary and Pascal came over.
And more...Jamie, Peter.
And...more Everyone started singing along.
And when all those people,
believe in you,
Deep enough, and strong enough
Believe in you...
Hard enough and long enough
It stands to reason that you yourself will
start to see what everybody sees in you...
The group suddenly fell silent as Catherine continued,
And maybe even you...They whispered along.
Can believe in you...too!"
Catherine and Vincent both gave Eric a hug and Catherine whispered in his ear. "Do you want to try now?" Eric nodded his head.
As everyone returned to their seats, the children started their final song again, and this time Eric sang his part without hesitation. The children received a standing ovation once Eric was done. Kipper, Samantha and the others pounded Eric on his back. The grin on his face was priceless.