Brownie Foster Mother
Betty is short (5’), rotund, and ruddy-cheeked. She has graying red hair in an intricate braid past her hips, bright green eyes, and slightly pointed ears. She dresses in meticulously clean and well-mended earth tones and is always wearing a pristine white apron. She generally smells faintly of some comfort food (fresh baked bread, chicken soup, chocolate chip cookies) and she always seems to be illuminated by a ray of sunshine. Her manner is cheery, optimistic, and compassionate.
Betty Carter was the thirty year old housewife of an Air Force officer who was relocated to Nellis Air Force Base in the early 50s. She was quite content with her life, raising her children, cooking, and attempting to garden in the dry, hot climate. Her husband wasn’t as happy with her weight gain and spent more and more time away “at the base”, which caused her a fair amount of anguish but only drove her to throw herself more into her domestic duties. One night, in 1957, weeping and throwing an old shoe at rabbits eating in her garden, she saw one of them change into a small, wizened man who glared at her and the night sky spun around her and she was suddenly in the desert.
The gnome took her back to his burrow-like home, squeezing her down so she’d fit, and forced her to work in his kitchens as recompense for her offense. She toiled, taking pleasure only in cooking and the strange and wonderful ingredients that were supplied for her, eventually through hard work earning the right to run the kitchen. Then, one night, with her Keeper and his guests sated, she snuck out through the tunnels into the night and tried to find her way home, the memory of her family guiding her way.
She returned to the world and found that ten years had passed. Her children were grown and living their own life, her husband had divorced her fetch and married the secretary from the base he was having the affair with, and her fetch turned out to be a miserable, bitter hag, made in that image by her Keeper’s spite. After learning of the hell it had put her children through while she was gone, she found it in its dirty apartment and poisoned it, then spent two years trying to reclaim her life. One of her three children forgave her but the other two had no interest in resuming relations. Despairing, she might have given up if not for Jessica. Jessie had escaped from her Keeper and returned to the world to find that twenty years had passed while she was gone, but she was still twelve and now had no family and no life to regain.
In Jessica, Betty found her new purpose. She rented a small house in the suburbs, found a job as a housekeeper, and began taking in new arrivals, helping them out by giving them food, a place to stay, and some recycled clothes to start out with. Money came in from the Lost she got back on their feet but mostly it was her efforts that kept things going. When her husband died, she was surprised to discover that she was his sole beneficiary. The influx of money let her stop working altogether and buy a small apartment building. She’s been happy taking care of her constantly shifting adopted family ever since.