I lay on the grass in my backyard. Looking up into the heavens as I run my toy rocket through the stars pretending, I was up there in them, exploring the universe in my rocket I had built. I loved astronomy. I had apparently since I was a tiny baby. The stars my daddy and mommy had painted on my bedroom ceiling had always calmed me. I make rocket noises as I pretend that I’m zooming through the galaxy.
“What are you up to my little baby bear?” Daddy calls from the house as he walks down the porch steps. I look over at him and grin, I hadn’t even realized daddy had got home from work. I normally am there to greet him with a cuddle. He must be early. He hasn’t been home early in months.
“Just playing daddy, there’s something new in the sky too. Come look. Come quick.” I say excitedly. Daddy comes down, he seemed to be a giant surrounded by my toy rockets and dolls I had scattered around me in the yard. He looks up at what I’m pointing at. When he doesn’t say anything, I look up at his face, he has a sad look as if he is upset but is trying not to be.
“That my little bear is an asteroid. The asteroid Oliver in fact.” He tells me looking up at the asteroid still with a sad look on his face.
“It is very pretty from here,” he says but a sad look is still on his face which turns to worry as he looks up at the asteroid.
“Is it going to hit daddy?” I ask looking up at it, daddy doesn’t normally look so worried.
“No little bear it’s not going to hit. At least not for thousands of years.” He assures me.
“Is this the model we were meant to build together?” He asks picking up one of my models from the grass. It had taken me all of the month to build it. I had been meant to build it with my dad, but his work kept getting in the way and he had been so busy. I had waited 5 months until mom had finally said why don’t we start building it together and surprise daddy with it and then he can finish it with you, she had left it on the dinner table so that daddy would see it as we built it, had he not noticed? I look at him worried, he had kept promising we would do it together and kept telling me to wait for him. Maybe I should have waited. He looks at me as if he knows, what I am thinking. He always seems to know what I’m thinking. Mommy jokes she has eyes at the back of her head but that’s nothing compared to daddy. I only ever have to think, and he will know I’m up to something. I look in his piercing green eyes, his gold flecks seem to whiz around his eyes as if there’s a storm going on under the surface. I’m torn to tell him that I gave up waiting when I knew I should have waited. But I had waited a long time, longer than I believe that most four-year-old’s would have waited. Daddy looks at me like he doesn’t know what to do. Am I in trouble?
“Theia Claire I’m sorry sweetheart. it’s my fault baby bear. There just never seems to be enough hours in the day currently.” He says he lays down on my blanket next to me and looks up at the sky.
“This world moves faster than I ever thought it would. time seems to have got away from me, even more than I realized until right now.” Daddy admits looking up at the Asteroid.
“I could have sworn it was only the other day your rocket arrived, and I said we would build it together. Time is making no sense right now.” He says. I turn onto my side to look at him, I’m confused.
“Theia, little bear how long ago did I tell you we would build this together?” he asks me.
“5 months ago, daddy. I know I should have waited but mommy helped me in the end. We left it on the table as we built it.” I admit not sure how daddy hadn’t noticed it. He looks up at the asteroid still.
“what’s wrong daddy?” I ask he is still frowning.
“Time has got away from me little bear. Even quicker than I realized.” He tells me. he turns and looks at me.
“It feels like it was only yesterday that you were a tiny little baby in my arms. Now your my big girl that’s just made daddy realize something huge that he’s been missing.” Daddy says looking at me with worry on his face.
“I’m so sorry little bear. I truly am.” He says seriously.
“Daddy.” I start nervously, not sure I should bring it up. When I did with mommy the other day, she said we would have to talk to daddy about it. But now I had daddy here.
“Yes, little bear?” Dad asks curiously.
“Can I maybe try school next term” I ask nervously. I have only ever asked twice in my life. Both times my parents decided I wasn’t ready or old enough. How I wasn’t ready I don’t know. yes, I agree until this year I hadn’t actually been old enough, but I should be starting kindergarten this year. Daddy looks at me so torn like I am equation he just can’t work out.
“Why do you want to go to school Theia? isn’t your schoolwork keeping you engaged again? Do we need to move onto high school work already?” He asks me sounding interested.
“No, the works okay.” I admit,
“Then why do you want to go to school Theia?” Dad asks me, laying next to me watching me as if he can see everything.
“I was talking to Gareth in our social break last week. he’s one of the kids in my online school program. he said about his school he goes to five days a week during the morning and how there’s this thing called recess. That he gets to play with other kids during it, and he said it’s so much more fun than our classes.” I start nervously. I want to play with other kids, it’s the truth, seeing other kids is something I don’t get to do. Daddy sighs he looks so torn at me as if he wants to give me the world but knows he can’t.
“I thought you were happy at your computer school. The teacher informed us that you and the other children are at a much higher level to other children and putting you into a normal school would not be for the best as you would be extremely bored.” Daddy starts worriedly.
“I am happy with school,” I admit, I am the works great, but you can’t play with children who aren’t really there. they are plugged into a computer hologram program same as you. The kids on the same program as me are all considered geniuses and even the closest to my age is 5 years older than me.
“Teddy.” Mom calls from the house porch, I look over at her. She’s in an apron and smiling, her light ash blonde hair like my own pulled back into a messy bun. She had been on a half day at work today and she was home before I woke up as I attend my classes in the evenings.
“Want to come to do some chemistry for the smarter kids with me,” Mommy calls. Yay cooking!
“Does that mean we are having a lovely meal tonight?” Daddy asks looking at Mommy like she hangs the sky.
“What do you fancy tonight?” Mom asks looking at daddy with a huge smile and a sparkle in her eyes.
“I really fancy pineapple again,” Daddy admits. Mom gives him a confused look. I don’t blame her, until the last few months Daddy had hated pineapple, now he wants it most nights. He used to tell her anything she cooked as her cooking is the best. But he hasn’t said that in a while.
“Are you sure Richard we had pineapple with dinner last night?” Mom asks him giving him a confused look as if demanding what the hell.
“I really fancy pineapple and rice for tonight,” Dad admits,
“But you used to hate pineapple, you gagged the first time you ever had it with me and have refused to try it again until the other month and now you seem to want it every day,” Mom says, looking at dad like he is a stranger. Dad freezes he looks up at the sky, then my rocket and seems to be doing math in his head, or at least it’s the same look he gives when he is.
“Daddy?” I ask.
“What’s wrong little bear?” Daddy asks me still looking at my rocket as if he could make it make sense if he looked at it long enough.
“Do you really want pineapple again?” I ask. Dad nods a frown now on his lips.
“Alright I will have to go to the shop and get some more, are you sure it’s what you want Richard?” Mom asks him like she was worried about daddy’s sanity.
“Yeah, I am positive sorry darling,” Daddy says.
“I will get some work done in my office whilst your both are out, it’s extremely important, I didn’t even realize until now what was going on” Daddy says as if lost in his own head. what? Daddy always used to come out with me and mommy, in the evenings. He used to not like us going out without him when he’s about and it’s dark.
“Richard?” Mom asks him worried.
“Sorry sweetheart I just am on a bit of a time crunch, and I need to do it all whilst I know what to do” Daddy says seriously.
“Alright Rich,” Mom says, she looks so confused.
“Theia can you please go get your jacket on.” mom says, I nod and climb to my feet.
“Bye love you, Daddy,” I say and run towards the house when I get to the porch mom puts her hand on my shoulder to stop me.
“Richard?” Mom asks again, Daddy hasn’t moved, he is still laid on my blanket looking at the model mom and I made without him.
“Theia waited 5 months to build it with you. but she hasn’t launched it yet,” Mom says. Daddy gives a weak smile in our direction.
“Tomorrow after work if it’s still light enough Theia we can launch it together all right baby girl? If not, sweetheart I promise we can do it this Saturday after you’ve finished your classes.” Daddy tells me I smile.
“Thank you, Daddy,” I say with a grin.
“I’ll also think and talk with mommy about you going to school okay little bear. But I’m not saying yes currently sweetie.” I run and hug him he smiles at me wrapping his huge arms around me and kisses my head.
“I love you so much little bear.” He says into my hair. He gives me another kiss on my forehead.
“Go get your jacket on baby it’s cold out here” Daddy says I nod and run into the house when he lets me go. I run upstairs and grab my current favorite pink jacket from my closet.
When I get back down Daddy’s in his office with the door locked. what’s going on with Daddy he never used to lock his office door unless he was doing something with chemicals. Then he would warn us.
“Mommy?” I ask worriedly.
“I don’t know little bear, I really don’t know” Mom says looking at the closed door, like she doesn’t understand.
“What do you say about us seeing what the shops have that we can have as a small treat tonight.” mommy says. I nod and we go out to the shop, mom programs our destination into the car.
“Theia, I know daddy’s acting strange. Well stranger even for daddy.” She says a small smile on her lips.
“But he does love you.” She assures me.
“I know mommy.” I assure her. When we get to the shop, we start shopping at treating it as a math lesson. I love spending time with mommy. We get distracted by the kid’s clothes for a while.
“Isn’t that the wife of that scientist Richard Ryan’s?” I hear someone say to someone else whilst we are down one aisle. The women turns and takes mom in.
“Yes, I believe it is.” She says. they stop us. Mommy keeping her hand on my shoulder as if to keep me safe as the women talk to her about daddy’s work. Mom smiles and talks with them. I know everyone loves daddy for his work. His work is making the air cleaner. It’s one of daddy’s long-term goals. Cleaner air for the planet. Repair the damage of previous generations. He says it’s so my generation and my children’s and their children still have a habitable planet. that humankind has damaged this planet and it won’t be habitable at all if we continue the way we were going. It’s challenging work as a lot of areas were already toxic. Mommy even grew up in a toxic area until daddy met her. My daddy is an amazing man I know that I’ve studied some of his work in my class already. I know his work is saving the planet. I want to follow in his footsteps.
When we get home, mom goes into the kitchen to unload the shopping and start cooking our dinner. I sit on the sofa and prepare to plug myself into the system for my classes when daddy comes out his office. He looks at me seriously as I’m setting up my system.
“Can I borrow you sweetheart.” Daddy says worriedly from his office door. I nod what could daddy want? I follow him through to his office. The first thing I notice is daddy’s notes are all scattered about everywhere. His shredding machine is full to the brim. even though I know our cleaner emptied it this morning as we burnt it which is daddy’s rules for all his paperwork. Shred then burn.
“Theia, I need you to do something extremely important for daddy.” Daddy says worriedly.
“Okay daddy?” I say curiously.
“I need you to change all of daddy’s passwords on the computer and all of daddy’s work, something Daddy and mommy and no one would ever guess no matter how hard they tried.” Daddy says seriously.
“Why Daddy?” I ask.
“I think someone’s trying to hack all of my work, so I want passwords no one will ever guess. Including myself and nothing to have the same passwords so it isn’t a case of them cracking one of them getting them all.” Daddy says seriously.
“Then how will you get to your work daddy?” I ask worriedly.
“Only you would be able to tell me the passwords and right now after you change it Theia, I want you not to tell daddy the passwords. Least not for a few years. Daddy can’t even trust himself right now.” Daddy says. He looks so worried about this.
“I just hope I’m not doing this to late. I wish I had realized months ago and then I should have got you to do this then.” He says seriously.
“What if I forget them?” I ask him worriedly.
“You have a photographic memory, Theia.” Daddy says. He looks so torn.
“I know it’s a lot of responsibility sweetheart but you’re the only person I can trust with this little bear. Can you do this for Daddy?” He asks me so worriedly. I nod scared that I will forget it with all this pressure to remember it.
“I will leave the room then. I want everything locked little bear. Okay I don’t want access to anything. Then I want you to make sure you can’t get to any of daddy’s work at all without one of your passwords. I know it’s a lot sweetheart, but I know you can do it.” Daddy says. I look at him worriedly. Then I look at the camera that catches my eyes. Its red blinking light focused straight on my face.
“Daddy why are you recording this?” I ask worriedly.
“Evidence that will hopefully keep you safe.” Daddy says worriedly.
“What’s going on daddy?” I ask him worriedly, something big is up. Daddy wants weird food. Now he wants to potentially lose all his life’s work.
“Nothing little bear.” Daddy bends down in front of me.
“Theia Claire.” Daddy says my name, like he fears it’s going to be the last time he gets to.
“Yes daddy?” I ask him so worriedly. What is going on. He seems to think. Then he sighs.
“Come here sweetheart. Daddy wants to record something.” He says sitting down on his seat. I sit on his lap and look worriedly at the camera that daddy has turned to face us. What is going on? Daddy lets out a huge sigh.
“This is the private testimony of Richard Ryanmerg Alpha Arcane level 98. Project planet earth repair. Team member 1 of 5. Alpha leader. This report has been recorded on 15 of June 2401. 95 years after my arrival to earth.” He sighs. Daddy is making no sense.
“This is my update from the last 25 years. years that have taken place whilst I have had no contact with you all due to interference disrupting our signal. As much as I have tried tirelessly to repair the connection. It just hasn’t worked.”
“As you saw what I was asking my little girl here to do I think I should introduce her first before I go into too much detail. This is my daughter Theia Claire Ryan’s, yes, I shortened my last name to something more human. she is currently an only child. She was born on the 29th of august 2397.” Daddy says worriedly looking at me like he is already regretting this.
“She and her mother very quickly became my entire world. Her mother Leana was born in what was once known as Russia before it became fully inhabitable. When I met her mother in Russia whilst there on research, she was a 15-year-old girl and should have been evacuated years before hand but her and her sister were deemed too low a priority.” Daddy says. Why is he saying all this?
“She was skin and bones and very poorly due to the contamination and her little sister was even worse.” Daddy says seriously.
“I took charge of their care and all of the others in that camp. As I cannot take seeing children suffer as you are fully aware. A lot of them I still see to this day due to the damage that was caused to them by growing up in a toxic environment.” Daddy says looking at the camera rather than me.
“I never expected to fall in love. I never came to this world expecting to find my mate. I especially never thought it would be a girl who at the time I found her was still a mere child. I may have never allowed Leana and Theia to fully know or see all of me. But I know both love me as much as I do them. Unconditionally through everything.” Daddy says he kisses my head. And tickles me a bit so I giggle.
“Leana fell pregnant the first time at 22 years of age, 81 years after I came here. I had always been informed that it was impossible for it to happen. But as she was my mate, I believe that may have something to do with it. Or the contamination has affected her in a way I could not predict but I refuse to do tests of her to see which is the most likely. Unfortunately, our eldest son was born sleeping.” Daddy says. Looking heartbroken I squeeze his hand. I’ve seen pictures of my elder brothers.
“I thought that was it my only shot to ever have a child. I had already decided not to be a father at least for this century. until I return home or some of you come here. which you are aware. a mere 11 months after my son was born Leana discovered she was pregnant again, this time with twins. Again, we lost both boys. Leana went into early labor and both there little bodies were too fragile to survive on this planet. We had no plans to try again or ever go through the loss of a child again. Leana took it upon herself and got herself sterilized, believing the contamination was what caused us to lose all three of our boys. I would have had myself done if there were places here I could have gone to. or Leana had even spoken to me about her plan. But she was heartbroken about losing our boys. She couldn’t go through it again and I wouldn’t have asked her to.” He says seriously, he kisses my head.
“My little bear here decided she didn’t like that idea. Almost 8 years after Leana was sterilized. She got ill and I could not understand it. She was pregnant again. Being sterilized had done nothing to stop our daughter here from being conceived. But then I know that doesn’t always affect with true mates and when it is the right time a baby often comes. Theia was so tiny, and I thought many a night that she wasn’t going to make it through. Thankfully, she grew to be mostly healthy. Although there are some days where she is more fragile than most children and I’m worried about her immune system if I was to let her be around other children. So yes, I admit I over protect my little child. Most people do not even know of her existence, and I hope it stays that way as long as possible so that she can have a safe childhood. She is growing much quicker than I wished she had.” Daddy says and tickles me again. I can’t help but giggle.
“Stop it daddy that tickles.” I giggle.
“Theia Claire is currently 4 years old and has her own dedicated album on my computer everything about her so far is locked in there. although I refuse to do many tests on my child. She is an extremely bright child. Already doing this planets middle school level work. she currently wants to explore the stars and be an astronaut and travel the universes.” Daddy says. He kisses my head again.
“She takes after my mother rather than myself.” Daddy chuckles. He looks at me like I hang the moon then.
“She is my entire world, and I will do everything I can possibly do to keep her safe. Which is why I am doing what I have to.” Daddy says to the camera.
“Lately it has come to my attention via my daughter here that I am acting odd. For example, craving foods I don’t even like.” Daddy says. He looks at the camera.
“Pineapple and rice are what we are having for dinner tonight. I have a file dedicated to my suspicion of the man I believe is responsible. He arrived down here 50 years after myself. the same time I lost connection with you all.” Daddy says.
“Kerrick or Arcane force if you ever get hold of this file. Find and protect my daughter. It’s all I ask from any of you.” Daddy says seriously.
“Please keep her safe.” Daddy says. he sighs.
“Lately I have been missing long segments of time and not realizing, for example I could have sworn I told my daughter I would build a toy with her a week ago, but I found out today it has been 5 months. She waited 5 months for me to do it with her before she gave up waiting and built in herself.” He sighs, he kisses my head.
“You have no idea how guilty I feel for this.” He sighs
“When I looked to see what could have caused me to loose so much time, I noticed that Passwords have been changed on my own system against my own knowledge, paperwork I would never send to anyone has been emailed out. But looking back I can see its myself who changed them and done it all.” Daddy says. I look at daddy worriedly. He tickles me and I giggle.
“My wife herself when I questioned her earlier tonight after I became aware. Couldn’t explain why she hadn’t thought to mention it. When I pushed for her to remember why she got a nosebleed. Which I think we all understand what it means.” He sighs.
“Right now, I’m not even fully sure how much they managed to get into Leana’s head, how safe it is to have her around Theia. Even though I know my wife would never so much as risk a hair on our daughter’s head. This is one of the main reasons I am getting Theia to change all my passwords today. To keep her safe. Then I am going to make Theia forget. I am going to Lock it right at the back of her mind so that only Kerrick or myself could ever unlock it. But I am more than aware that people may try.” Daddy says. He looks at me like his heart is breaking.
“Which is why I am also going to lock my wife’s memories. I have booked Theia and her mother a trip away in five days’ time. When I go to Africa for the month. I have arranged for a few humans who work for the FBI to take over their protection. To take my child and wife into protective custody, as I do not believe I will make it to see your arrival.” Daddy says looking at the camera.
“The Asteroid that symbols 5 years until your arrival came today. It is hard to believe I have been away almost 100 years.” Daddy says. What is daddy on about? 100 years? He gently kisses my head again as I give him a confused look. He seems to hold me tight as if afraid to let go of me.
“I want what’s best for Theia and Leana and I believe being with me at this current time is dangerous for them both. I have already had threats towards Leana’s life. Today was no exception. The two of them went shopping, during that time, I managed to stop 3 people who tried to hurt, kill, or kidnap them I am unsure which they were aiming for. One was defiantly trying to take Theia.” Daddy says he looks so hurt.
“Daddy?” I start worriedly. Thinking about the man who I had thought was following me and mommy round the shop.
“It’s okay Teddy, you’re okay.” Daddy says pulling me tight to him, I wrap my little arms around his neck and snuggle into him yawning.
“I love my wife and child more than my own life. Theia is also the first successful mixed child and I do not want her ever falling into the wrong hands. People that may experiment on her to work out how she is possible. But like I said my child is extremely smart and advanced, but she is also a four years old child. If someone was to tell her they are in the right, she wouldn’t question it.” Daddy says.
“She believes adults are the ones in the right. I have tried to make her think for herself but also show adult’s respect. But it’s my own opinion that my child could very easily be manipulated by my people.” Daddy says.
“I love my daughter more than you could imagine until you have your own child and mate.” Daddy says. I let out another yawn and snuggle in more.
“Leana.” Daddy calls. I watch mommy come in through heavy eyelids.
“What’s wrong Richard honey? Oh, Theia sweetheart do you want to go to bed for a nap baby?” Mommy asks coming in and seeing me. Possibly thinking I am bothering daddy.
“Come here sweetheart.” Daddy says patting his other leg. Mom gives him a what the hell look but comes over, Dad wraps his arms around her and pulls her down she comes down giggling.
“This is my little family. My own reason that I have worked so tirelessly the last 97 years, to try repair the damage humankind have done to this planet.” Daddy says.
“I married Leana here when she was 21 years old. Her younger sister as one of our witnesses with two human friends I have made and two of my arcane branch that came with me. one of them being Douglas the FBI agent who is the human I am entrusting with my family’s life.” Daddy says.
“And Lucas who suspiciously died four months ago with one of my arcane members Benji Frangou please give him the honors he deserves for him and his family as he worked tirelessly with me even if he hadn’t fully agreed with everything, I have done these 97 years.” Daddy says.
“Lucas killed himself and Benji by driving into a lake.” Mom says giving daddy a worried look for not remembering. daddy kisses her head.
“Apparently so. But after Benji had rung me and left a voice lock that something was happening that my research wasn’t safe and that he was on the way to see me. I didn’t find the voice print until today even though I must have listened to it.” Daddy says giving the camera a weird look.
“Theia and Leana mean everything to me.” Daddy says.
“What are you doing Richard honey?” Mom asks him confused.
“Just recording some information for the future.” Daddy says. leaning a claiming mom’s lips. they start kissing. I cover my eyes giggling. Daddy eventually puts mommy down when she pulls away.
“I came in to tell you dinners ready Rich.” Mom says. Dad gently pecks her lips.
“I will be out in a second. Sorry honey, I lost track of time again.” Daddy says.
“I will go dish up then, not to long Rich.” Mom says.
“Alright baby.” Dad says mommy gets up daddy gives her a little pat on her bum as she leaves.
“Being away from them both is going to kill me. I hope it’s not too long until I can safely have them both back in my arms. If it never is, I only want the best for them both. Teddy bear here to have all her dreams come true and to have a safe happy childhood.” Daddy says kissing my head, I’m starting to drift off in his lap.
“I am not entirely sure how fast my child is going to grow. She is roughly the size of an 18-month-old human as you can possibly tell, she is extremely tiny.” Daddy says kissing my head.
“She is smaller than our kind at her age by a lot. But she is also smaller than humans are at her age. I am not sure how long her life span is going to be. She’s too young for me to make guesses and I refuse to do tests on her like I said. But if she was one of our kind, she would still be in her baby faze. Which is possibly apt for her size and development.” He admits.
“I only want the best for her and be that with my own kind or humans I don’t honestly know. She would love to meet her grandma and be told stories about the galaxies out there. I hope she gets the best of what both worlds have to offer her. I hope she gets to see all the stars and grow up.” Daddy says. I yawn and stretch out.
“Like I said she is a baby.” Daddy says.
“Come on sleepy head, we still need to have dinner and daddy still needs you to make up loads of different passwords for his work.” Daddy says I nod yawning and stretching out. He chuckles.
“She has had a long day and skipped her nap.” Daddy says to the camera. He sighs and holds me tightly to him.
“If the worst happens my daughter will never remember the real me. She has a photographic memory but for her own safety I will be putting most of her early memories behind a lock. As I will be for Leana.” Daddy says to the camera. A beaker of milk comes flying over and goes into my mouth. Daddy sighs. I close my eyes sucking on the beaker.
“Sweet dreams little Teddy bear.” Daddy says kissing my head. I can slightly hear him as I’m drifting.
“I don’t know what to do for the best all I can do is what I believe will keep her and my work safe. My work is less important to me than she ever will be.” I hear daddy say before sleep fully claims me.
The next day I’m Sitting in front of daddy’s computer. I sit and look at the last folders I need to password. Daddy hasn’t gone to work today. Mom has but daddy took the day off especially to be with me so we could spend the entire day changing his passwords apparently. He has gone out the room though and I can hear him making phone calls in the family room. But I can’t fully hear the words he is saying. What should the password for this folder be? LioNs&TiGerSaNdbEaRs04A0HMI. I giggle to myself at this password. I need another idea, I look out the window for ideas, giggling more as I take in my rockets and dolls. DoL1y1nSpAcEEpLanEtEnceladus. Maybe I should do another planet. or would that be easy to guess? I know Scan1ATyChomoUStAcH33 giggling I make more random passwords. PteroDac8tylP00hing is the one I’m giggling about when daddy pops his head into the room. He smiles at me.
“Are we making the passwords still little bear or are we playing?” he asks me.
“What do you call a dog that you find in your bathroom daddy?” I ask him. He shakes his head but he’s smiling.
“I don’t know Theia what?” he asks me.
“A poodle!” I giggle.
“Are some of these passwords toilet themed?” he asks me.
“Not saying daddy.” I giggle.
“Toilet humor and four-year old’s. Call me when your done Theia” Dad says shaking his head but he’s smiling. I hear his chuckle as he leaves the room. I giggle more as I do more passwords. I’m working for an hour when daddy knocks on the door.
“Hold on daddy.” I say finishing doing a password giggling.
“Come in daddy.” I giggle out. he comes in holding a little sandwich.
“Lunch break little one.” He tells me. I giggle and take the sandwich coming away from his computer too. He looks at me seriously.
“So, what are you learning in school currently?” he asks me. I start telling him, he listens to me and seems to absorb everything I say. when I’ve finished, he watches me closely.
“I’ve been thinking about what you asked yesterday.” He says.
“About school?” I ask hopefully.
“Yes, about school Theia.” He sighs.
“I don’t think right now is the best time for you to start, you’re so small and tiny compared to most children your age.” He says. he must see my disappointment as he lets out a sigh.
“I’m worried your little immune system wouldn’t be strong enough to cope with being in a class with other kids, I also understand that the schoolwork they do is extremely below your level. The kids your age would only be at the stage of learning to write.” He admits.
“But I understand you want it for the social aspect of seeing other kids.” He says.
“So, I am thinking prehab’s if you can be a grown-up little girl for me and agree to lie slightly about your age.“ he starts.
“You said lying is wrong daddy.
“It is wrong little bear unless it’s done to keep us safe.” He sighs.
“I want you to lie and tell people your two or three not four do you think you can do that for daddy?” he asks me.
“But you said it’s wrong to lie daddy.” I repeat.
“It is wrong little bear.” He sighs.
“But it will keep you safe if mommy says to. do you promise me you will?” he asks me.
“I need you to promise me Theia that you’ll do whatever mommy says to do to keep yourself safe. Will you promise daddy?” he asks me.
“Okay daddy.” I say worriedly.
“Have you got many more passwords to do?” he asks me.
“a few.” I admit. He nods.
“Theia, I love you so much.” He tells me.
“I love you too Daddy.” I say. I touch his face as a tear runs down his face.
“Where are you hurt daddy?” I ask worriedly.
“Just here in my heart baby.” Daddy says tears rolling down his face faster.
“it’s okay daddy I kiss it better.” I say. he picks me up into his giant arms and holds me tight to him.
“You do make this world better baby. You do make it better.” He says into my hair but he’s crying. Why he’s crying I don’t know. I hold on to him tight and start crying myself.
“When he’s stopped crying, I stop a few minutes later. He kisses my head.
“Daddy will be outside the office call me when you’re ready.” He says. he leaves the room. I watch him go, I rub my little eyes and walk back to the computer. I take in the camera that’s still recording. Its recording so you can’t see the screen. Doomsday1066w1iDadD1Cr1. I make up twenty more passwords and do what daddy said I had to before check before I call him back in the room.
“Daddy, I’m done.” I yell. Daddy walks in 5 minutes later.
Is that all of them Teddy?” Daddy questions me worriedly. I nod.
“that’s all of them daddy, except the video you still said you need to upload and the one from yesterday. Them I will save the password to Arcane like you told me too.” I tell him. He nods. he picks up his camera and moves it so it can see both our faces again.
“Thank you, Teddy.” Daddy says kissing my head. He looks at the computer that I’ve spent the last few hours on. It is ancient by all rights I’ve never seen a computer like it anywhere else. when my own I can plug myself into and do. Mom calls dads a relic as it’s so weird. He normally laughs and says how yes, it is.
“Teddy, I want you to take daddy’s computer here wherever you go in life and keep it hidden from others eyes.” Daddy says. He kisses my head. He looks me straight in the eyes.
“it’s a family heirloom and a relic. I want you to look after it for me and hopefully one day pass it on to your own children. But I want you to forget every single password you made for me today.” He says. He has the camera back fully on me.
“I will forget all the passwords.” I say, tears are running down daddy’s face again. I go to wipe them off again, but daddy does himself.
“I want you to forget what daddy looks like, unless I am right in front of you.” Daddy says seriously.
“I will forget what you look like unless your there.” I say. I don’t know why I say it.
“I want you to live a good life and always do what you believe is for the best and help people.” Daddy says.
“I will try to daddy.” I say not sure what’s going on, tears are running down my own face again.
“I love you little bear.” Daddy says he’s crying; I quickly hug him. Scared he’s hurt. Dad looks at me like I am breaking his heart. He lifts up the rocket we made last year that he normally has sat on his computer desk.
“I want you to take this rocket with you too, Theia. I want you to keep this rocket close and when you miss daddy. Hold it tight and no matter where I am. I will be with you.” he tells me.
“Are you going somewhere daddy?” I ask tears running down my face.
“I’m afraid I’m going to.” he admits.
“But you’ll come back.” I say.
“I hope so little bear. I really do.” he says.
“When I get home from work tomorrow baby, I promise we can launch your ship together as long as it’s still not raining. If it’s the last thing we ever do together I want you to always remember it, that daddy was always there. That I loved you so very much.” Daddy says tears running down his face.
“I will daddy.” I assure him. I know he had wanted to do it today, but the rain had stopped us. It wasn’t due to stop until it was dark.
“Teddy when your older I need you to record yourself to prove your still here. I need you to reveal yourself when it’s time that people know about you. Understand?” Daddy says looking me in the eyes.
“Okay Daddy?” I say confused.
“Richard, she’s running a feverish temperature.” Mom says worriedly the thermometer in my mouth. Dad looks at me so worried. He kisses my little head and then he slides his computer into the little suitcase under my bed.
“Stay home from work with her today Leana.” Dad says.
“Daddy rocket.” I whine. He kisses my head.
“Tonight, little bear, if you’re not well enough tonight we will do it before I go to Africa.” He assures me. I nod.
“I promise little bear we will do the rocket together.” He assures me. he leans and kisses my head.
“Your burning up baby bear.” He says worriedly. He looks at mom.
“there’s some antibiotics in my office 3rd draw down. Only give them to her if you think she needs them. ring me if her temperature goes above 38.” He tells her mom nods. I think sometimes daddy forgets mommy has a doctorate as well. He kisses mom, he looks at me worriedly.
“I love you.” he tells mom as he steps back from her.
“You could call in yourself if you’re worried.” Mom says.
“I would darling, I really wish I could, but I got a meeting to arrange what needs doing whilst I’m in Africa.” He says.
“Me and Teddy could come with you.” mom says.
“No, I’m not taking Theia abroad like that, especially when she’s already currently ill.” Dad says.
“don’t go to class if you’re not up to it.” Daddy says kissing me.
“I love you both so much.” He says. he then reluctantly leaves. Mommy sits on the bottom of my bed.
“NOOOO!” I hear my mom scream. It wakes me up with a start. Climbing out my bed, I walk to the top of the stairs. I don’t even get down when I see all the men in my home going through my daddy’s office, they are taking his new computer out that he brought a year ago but rarely used. His computer he uses is under my bed. But I don’t tell them that, I just stand there watching them. no one has clocked me yet. Mommy is crying.
“He can’t be dead.” Mommy cries out. whose dead?
“It was a huge explosion Mrs. Ryan no one made it out. it is extremely suspicious that you weren’t there.” An extremely tall man says why is he smirking? Explosions aren’t a good thing at all.
“But Richard. Richard would have made his lab safe so that everyone could get out in an emergency.” Mom says, she’s crying in fact she’s sobbing.
“Mommy?” I ask as a question. The ridiculously tall giant freezes and looks over at me. where I stand at the bottom of the stairs.
“Hello, who are you? what’s your name?” He asks his eyes wide. As if he hadn’t ever expected to see a child.
“Theia.” I say, not sure why I even tell him my name. I want to run and hide from him, he scares me. especially with how he’s looking at me.
He walks over to me. He is ducking but even then, his head is brushing against the ceiling he’s even taller than daddy is. We have high ceilings as daddy constantly hits his head on doorframes and ceilings when we are out. The man looks at me like I can’t possibly be real. He reaches out to touch me and I flinch away from the stranger. Our front door opens then, I spin hoping its daddy to protect me from this scary man, but a man in a suit comes in
“Leana?” he questions taking in what’s going on. I recognize him at least and run straight to him. He will keep me safe.
“Uncle Doug.” I say running and throwing myself in the man’s arms. He is in a suit he doesn’t normally wear a suit. It doesn’t suit him. He kisses my head.
“Hello little Theia Claire. Wow you have a fever” he says kissing my head, worry on his face when he pulls back.
“Excuse me who are you?” the ridiculously tall man says to Uncle Doug looking at him like he wants to kill him right then.
“Sorry I am Agent Douglas Jones from the FBI. A friend of the family. I just saw the news about the laboratory and thought I would come check on Leana and Theia.” Uncle Doug says.
“But whom are you? And what are you doing in Richard’s house going through his office?” Uncle Doug questions.
“I am here to collect all of Richard’s work and cease and seal it. Until it is deemed if he was responsible for the explosion and mass murder in his laboratory today.” The man says, I turn and take him in and the little smirk on the corner of his lips scares me.
“Rich would never.” Mom says sobbing still.
“Murders?” I ask scared.
“Where’s Daddy?” I ask tears in my eyes. Uncle Doug shush me.
“It’s okay Teddy it’s okay.” Uncle Doug says into my ear.
“I think it would be best if I take Mrs. Ryan’s and the child into custody as well until we get everything sorted as its extremely suspicious how she wasn’t there when she works there.” The tall man says looking at Uncle Doug like he has no other options.
“On what grounds. The site has not even been put out yet, people may still be alive in there. it was only half an hour ago that the first explosion was heard. You are jumping the gun a lot. Can I see your warrants please?” Uncle Doug says. I hear a noise. Uncle Doug presses my little head deeper into his chest and I feel him move his arm.
“I wouldn’t do that. I am already on speaker with the police and FBI as we speak. They have questions for you.” Uncle Doug says.
“Hand over Richards child if you wish to live.” The tall man sneers looking at me in Uncle Doug’s arms.
“Why in the world would you need to take his adopted 18-month-old daughter?” Uncle Doug questions. Adopted? I know that word but are they talking about me or does daddy have another daughter? I’m not 18 months old. But daddy did say to lie about it to keep me safe. I’m scared of the man too. Is that why I need to lie?
“Adopted?” the man sneers.
“Yes, I was sterilized over 10 years ago, due to complications from when I was a child. Richard and I adopted Theia from a toxic zone.” Mom says. They did? The man chuckles.
“That sounds like Richard always taking the children in if they have a sob story. Always trying to come across the good guy.” The man sneers. This man really sounds like he hates daddy.
“Leana can you and Theia please go get everything you can’t live without. I shall take you both to my office until everything’s sorted out here. If these men wish to talk to you after, they can come to the station where you shall have a lawyer.” Uncle Doug says deadly serious.
“Come on Theia.” Mom says taking me from Uncle Doug’s arms she carries me as if afraid to put me down even for a moment. I wrap my little arms around my sobbing mother.
“Mommy what’s happened?” I ask as we get to the top of the stairs.
“I don’t know right now baby bear. But I need you to be brave for me.” Mommy says but she’s still crying. She pulls my little suitcase out from under my bed. She opens it to put clothes in, she takes in daddy’s computer hidden wrapped in a blanket. Worry goes on her face. She puts her finger over her mouth as if to tell me not to talk. I nod.
“Theia, if anyone asks your 18 months old, okay?” she whispers. I nod.
“Okay mommy.” I whisper back.
4 weeks later
“Leana, you know it’s what Richard wanted.” Uncle Doug says firmly, waking me up. We are in a black car on the way to somewhere Uncle Doug says we will be safe. We have been in this car for hours now.
“Richard wanted you to fake mine and Theia’s deaths and have us hide away as if we have done something wrong?” Mom snaps her question at Uncle Doug.
“Richard wanted to keep you and Theia safe. You saw his letter. you can’t deny it was his writing. Leana, I promised him I would keep you both safe. Even if it means I have to send Theia somewhere without you.” Uncle Doug says to her. Mom looks like she wants to be sick.
“They are saying all over the news that he killed them all Doug. Richard!” Mom sobs out. She’s been crying on and off the last 4 weeks.
“I know what they are saying Leana but what’s important is we both know it’s not true. You know Richard would never hurt anyone. That he would risk his own life for others.” Uncle Doug says.
“They have a video of him killing those men in a carpark Doug. He randomly went up to a man and stabbed him from behind. I thought he was at home in his office at the time!” Mommy sobs out. She looks back at me to make sure I am still asleep. I pretend to be.
“I know what the video showed. I saw it Leana. But I don’t for a moment believe it. Videos can be faked” Uncle Doug snaps.
“It couldn’t be Richard. Richard hates violence.” Uncle Doug says.
“I don’t know Doug, I just don’t know. I should have been there too. He told me to stay home.” Mom says.
“He also promised Theia he would send off her rocket with her. Do you think he would lie to her like that if he never planned to come home?” Uncle Doug snaps at mom.
“I don’t know, he told her for five months he would build it with her and let her down. What if it was just more empty words?” Mom questions tears running down her face.
“What if it was a complete accident and your just jumping to accusations because of what the media is saying. Richard was a good man. We both know it.” Uncle Doug says.
“I want you and Theia to take these papers, fake passports, money and run. keep running, hide Leana.” Uncle Doug says.
“Teddy needs you to be strong right now and keep her safe. She needs the strong woman who protected all those kids in Russia when she was only a child. She needs her mommy Leana.” Uncle Doug says.
“Whatever really happened in the laboratory Richard is dead. for some reason people turned up at your house that weren’t police claiming they were, they wanted to take Theia.” Uncle Doug says, his voice breaking.
“That man literally said to her that one day she would be his.” Uncle Doug says. I start crying scared. Like I was that moment when we were leaving the house and the man had bent over me towering over my tiny frame and told me one day, I would be his. Mom turns around to look at me.
“Oh baby. Theia it’s okay. It’s okay.” Mommy says.
“Can you stop so I can get her and comfort her she scared Doug.” Mom says.
“I can’t Leana, I need to get you both as far away from here as I possibly can. Your car will be found in a few hours. We need there not to be any way for someone to link us with the car.” Uncle Doug says.
“Mommy?” I ask tears running down my face. I pull at my black hair that mommy had painfully dyed last night, the chemicals had stunk.
“Shh Teddy bear it’s okay.” Mommy says, tears running down her own face. I look at her own black hair scared of what is happening.
“We are both going to be so brave okay baby girl. We can be brave right baby bear?” she asks me.