“Yeah, I had a family, but there was an accident. I was the only survivor and my parents were only children. I had no living relatives. I was put into foster care with the Kavanaughs, when I was little I didn’t know any better. My new dad liked me enough and my new mom wanted a daughter because she only had sons. So they adopted me. I went from being Angela Thomason to being Angela Kavanaugh. My brothers paid some attention to me, but they were like my parents, they didn’t love me. They saw me as someone as an outsider, that while I had their name and lived with them, I would never truly be one of them. But as I got older, I wanted to do my own thing and my mom didn’t like that. She wanted me to do the things that she wanted. My brothers didn’t care about me at all after I grew up. Then my parents were fighting all the time and got a divorce, that was when I was fourteen. My father moved away, saying that he couldn’t tolerate being near his ex-wife and me, other than that, we all stayed in the state. At that point, my brothers were already adults and had jobs.
“I was never truly happy growing up. I have very faint memories of my real parents, but I remember being happy. Everything has felt so fake until that man took me. This is not a case where I can say that I took everything for granted because I lost my family, but I don’t care...” Angela looked away.
“Angela, just know that now we are your family, we will care for you. I’m sure that Luca will hunt your brothers down and talk to them, but that is because he cares for you and he wants to know why they disappeared right before you got kidnapped.” Elia said with a gentle voice.
“It will take some time, you won’t get better overnight no matter how much you wish it. You are human and you are a survivor.”
“I don’t like how I feel. I want to be alone, but I also don’t want to be alone and want to be comforted.”
“Luca is here for you, he clearly wants you as his own. He is willing to help you become the happy girl, you once were. He will be with you every step of the way.”
“I know that and everyone is so helpful and nice, but I feel like it’s a bit too much after being alone for so long with only him there occasionally. I’ve never really been introverted, but...” Angela trailed off.
“I know what you mean, I’ve never been in a situation even close to you, but as a child, I always followed Luca and Alessio around, I was like a lost puppy. They tolerated it because they found it interesting that no matter what, I followed them around. They began to see me as a little brother that needed guidance. I didn’t have a mother or a father, what I had was an uncle that was too busy working and staying out nights to care for me. I knew then that when they were older, Luca and Alessio would have big positions to fill because Luca’s father was the don and Alessio’s father was his right hand man. I admired them because while kids, they were so responsible and I wanted to stay with them.” Elia had this faraway look in his eyes as he remembered his childhood.
“How did you know Luca and Alessio?” Angela wondered.
“We went to the same elementary school, but more importantly, we lived in the same neighborhood. They would also walk around on the weekdays after school without a care. It was because they always had bodyguards watching them, but later I found out they would walk because it let them feel free and without any responsibility. These were nine and ten year olds, but they had a family obligation to fulfill. One day, I just started walking with them. They ignored me for two years, but always managed to tell me what they were doing so I could join. It wasn’t until middle school that they accepted me as a friend.” Elia shook his head chuckling.
“That’s funny, but it seems like a such a fond memory.” Angela giggled.
“It is. I’m glad for what happened, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I won’t tell their story or Lauro’s, but just know. We all have our own stories, and while we may not be able to relate with you, we will do our best to help you get through this tough period. You don’t have to do it alone.”
“Thank you Elia. That means a lot.” Angela smiled gently. She felt a little better, there was still this big and heavy weight, but it lessened just a small bit.
“Do you want to talk more or are you done sharing for now?” Elia inquired.
“I want at least one person to know, so I shouldn’t stop now. The only reason I know that my brothers disappeared a week before I was taken was because my mom had mandated a family dinner every Sunday, no matter what. It wasn’t an option, it had started after Lex, my eldest brother, graduated high school and was getting ready to go to college. When I went to Crestview University, I decided to stay on campus because I couldn’t stay living in that house anymore. I had to go back each Sunday though. The Sunday before I was taken, none of my brothers showed up and it made my mom livid. She had called their cellphones, their girlfriends, and workplaces. No one knew where they were. Do you think that Luca would be able to find them?”
“Perhaps. Although, it may be better for you to ask him because if I do, he’ll want me to tell him why I brought them up and to tell him what I know. Then he’ll get mad that I won’t tell him cause I promised you that I wouldn’t tell anyone. So there’s that.” Elia let out an exasperated sigh and chuckled.
“Alright...I’ll go ask him.” Angela put down the book and stood up from her seat and made her way to the door of the library and then turned to face Elia again, “Thank you for this talk, I really appreciated it.”
“Of course Angela. I may not have known you long, but you’re family now. I take care of family, I want you to know that.” Elia sincerely said with a soft smile.
Angela turned the knob of the door and opened and closed it behind her. She leaned against the door and let out a big sigh. With Luca, Alessio, Elia, Lauro, and Abelia, Angela had a chance to finally be part of a loving family again. One that would not love her conditionally or tell her what to do. A family with resources at ready to find out why her brothers disappeared before she was kidnapped and why no one looked for her.
She stood up and slowly made her way to Luca’s office.