chapter twelve: wednesday
chapter twelve: wednesday
two weeks later.
After a week of me thinking, Kit left the house. Where he’d gone, I have no idea. He hit me with a train of information, I had no idea what the fuck I was supposed to do. Like, what was he expecting me to do, run into his arms, tell him I love him and that everything was going to be okay? No. He literally told me that my father is innocent, that he didn’t kill my mother.
That’s not something you process easily. Even after two weeks, I still can’t think straight. I missed him, that goes without saying, but I can’t help but wonder if my life would be easier without him in it. Ever since I dug him out of the ground, which for one is a very stressful and strange way to meet someone, my life has been turned upside down.
I love him. There’s nothing else to say. It’s not that he’s bad for me or good for me, he’s just right. But he is involved in shit that I told myself I would never ever be involved in. I could never be involved in. My mother had left a journal behind with all that I would ever need to know about her and my father and their involvement with the mob, but I could never bring myself to read it. It had been sitting there in her room, waiting for me to come and pick it up. Until now.
Kit’s revelation of his past had led me to become curious about my mother’s past, and so I picked up the book. And I read it.
My dear Lucy, if you’re reading this, it means that both your father and I are no longer in your life. I had hoped to be able to explain this to you in person, so you could ask me any questions you needed answered. I’m sorry for whatever you went through, мой ребенок. I wish I could be there now for you.
This all started when your father and I still lived in Russia, before you were born, and before I had even met him or Alexei. My father was a rich man, he had made sure that I attended all the prestigious ballet academies, specifically the Vaganova. Yes, мой ребенок, your mother was a ballerina.
Anyway, while I was at the Vaganova, I met a young dancer named Alexei. To say I was smitten is an understatement. That man had me wrapped around his finger and he could have asked me to break my knee, and for him, I would have. I would have done anything for him.
Until I met Anatoly. I was out dancing with some friends, and there he was, sitting at the bar writing. He saw me, and I saw him. I gestured to him to come dance but he didn’t come, smiling all the while. I went to the bar, grabbed his hand and led him to the dance floor. I got home so late that night. But I knew I had fallen in love.
And so had Alexei. He figured it out when I stopped worshipping the ground he stood on. He was angry, and he started harrassing me, to tell him who had “stolen his precious Katerina” from him.. It was ridiculous. Nevertheless, he was my partner for every pas-de-deux, so I took him to meet my precious Anatoly. They hit it off instantly.
A couple of years later, I married Anatoly and Alexei was the best man. Then you came along. Our little bundle of joy. I was so happy to have you in my arms, but I knew that I didn’t want to raise you in Russia. I knew it was my home, and all our family was there, but I wanted my daughter to grow up somewhere where being a woman was not an immediate classification as a ballerina or a housewife. I wanted you to have a chance at a better life.
Alexei was living in America already, so he made sure your father and I got our papers, and by extension, you. He brought us over to America, and we were so grateful. But we didn’t know what the cost would be.
Alexei had always had it in his mind that i was his and no one else’s, so he took this chance to ‘recruit’ your father. Anatoly had two options, he would have to go back to Russia, leaving his wife and new child in the United States, or become one of Alexei’s henchmen. Anatoly was the kindest man I had ever known, each night he would come home and drink so much because of the things he had witnessed or that Alexei had made him do.
He would never tell me what he saw, but I knew in a way what he would witness. Alexei was always a cruel man, so the things I could think of at the boundaries of my cruelty were where he would start. Being completely honest, ребенок, I have no idea what I ever saw in that man. But I was young, and naïve. And I had no idea what was to come of this cruelty.