Chapter - 12
“In life, redemption was walking up the down escalator: stop to congratulate yourself, and back you slid.” - AMY WALDMAN
“Alicia, someone’s here to see you,” one of the guards announced.
Did mom have a change of mind? Who else would want to see her?
Alicia followed the guard as the curiosity and a small bubble of excitement built within her. She’d missed the outside world and saw only orange everywhere.
“Mo-” The call died down in her throat when she noticed the well-dressed blonde wasn’t her mother. “Mrs. Kaufman?”
The elder woman picked up the receiver as soon as her grey eyes locked with Alicia’s green ones. Alicia did the same and looked at the woman with anticipation.
“Is this true?” Mrs. Kaufman plastered the paper before her as her voice shivered. “Do we have a grandchild?” Her sound cracked.
“Yes.” Alicia swallowed. She now noticed how much Mrs. Kaufman had changed over the years. Her grey hairs were more prominent and the wrinkles of her skin visible.
No makeup adorned her face. She still wore her expensive clothes, but there was nothing special about it. No diamonds or other jewelry decorated her ears or neck. She looked nothing like the woman she’d met years ago.
“All these years... Why? What did we ever do to you?” The woman sniffled and her husband came to stand beside her. He squeezed her shoulder as she tried to regain her composure. “We thought we lost everything. Why would you keep such a thing from us?”
“I...I’m sorry,” Alicia choked.
The male took the receiver from his wife. “You’ve given us hope, Alicia. You took our son from us, but if we ever find out that this is one of your games, I’ll go to hell and beyond to make you pay.”
Mr. Kaufman reminded her so much of his son. However, she didn’t miss the tiredness in his voice. Alicia stared at the retreating couple for a moment before the guard urged her in.
I did that to them. I ruined their lives.
Alicia couldn’t focus on anything for the rest of the day. Fortunately for her, the inmates didn’t bother her much. When Rebecca came to check on her, she cried her heart out, feeling better with every tear she spent.
Two weeks later...
There were no updates from Mr. and Mrs. Kaufman. She couldn’t bring herself to write to them again. After revealing something that would change their lives forever, she thought it was better to leave them alone.
I’d given them enough to grieve.
She sat in the library, going through the newspaper when column news caught her attention. Her mother was arrested with some thugs. There was a color photo of her mother showing her mid finger to the reporters as the cops dragged her to their car.
The disheveled look of her mother was alarming. Was she using drugs again? Seemus divorced her mother. It was on the news. She could only imagine how Alana even survived in New York. She never saw her mother work or do a chore.
Alicia placed the paper on the table and rubbed her temples. Would they lock her in the same prison? How would mom react if she saw me here?