In the present day, May says that their story might have begun in a distant white room, but it didn’t end there. She wonders to herself if she would change the course of her life if she could while she holds Judy’s hand at Magnolia Manor, where they both live now. Although they can connect as sisters whenever they want now, May reminds Judy to keep their relationship a secret still. May talks to Judy about their biological family and they share stories of their experiences together. Sometimes Judy doesn’t know May, but May still senses the love between them. Judy points to a couple walking in the garden and says they look sweet. May tells her it’s Avery and Trent so Judy waves to them. Judy and May giggle together when the couple disappears behind an arbor for a little too long.
In the end, May is still Judy’s big sister and by staying with her in Magnolia Manor, she is continuing to honor Briny’s request from so long ago: to take care of the younger kids. This shows how even though Rill accepted a new identity as May, she is still fundamentally the same person with the same values and the same deep love and sense of duty towards her family. May’s presence in the facility also means that Judy, for the first time, gets to have her sister with her in public, even though they don’t admit their relationship. As Hootsie believed, being reunited was the key to both women’s happiness, and their relationship provides a much more positive model of family loyalty than the Staffords’ rigid expectations did throughout the book.