“Are you okay? Beth told me you hurt your leg.” Mia asked after entering my room, her voice full of concern. I gesture towards Hazel, and she got my message and walked towards the balcony waiting for me. I kissed Hazel’s head and joined Mia. “What happened?” I sat on the coffee table, and she did the same.
“It’s Chase,” I explained to her what happened earlier, the encounter with Chase, and how he reacted after seeing me.
“Oh, that poor little boy.” I nodded my head agreeing with her. “What will you do now?”
“Zach has gone to bring some snacks for Hazel. Would you mind giving her company? I want to see how Chase is doing right now?” I requested Mia.
“Babe, you don’t have to ask. Just go. That kid needs you right now.” I smiled and stepped inside my room.
“Baby, I am going downstairs, aunt Mia will be here, so be nice and don’t trouble her, okay?” I playfully narrowed my eyes at her, and she gave me her naughty smile as usual. I shook my head and left the room.
Thank god Chase’s room was on the same floor, or else I would have to use the stairs, which is next to impossible with this injured foot.
The first floor has four rooms. One is the master bedroom occupied by Zach, the other one was mine, next to his. A room across Zach’s was Chase’s. I don’t know what the other room was for. I walked a few more steps and stood in front of his room, and knocked.
“Come in,” Samantha’s voice answered, and I opened the door. “Anna!” she exclaimed. She put the first aid kit on the side table and stood up. Chase was silent and avoiding my presence. I took hesitant steps towards the bed. “You hurt your foot.” Samantha’s curious statement brought Chase’s attention towards my feet.
“It’s nothing serious. I fine, Sam. Do you mind, I wanted to talk to Chase in private?” I politely asked.
“Why would I? I was about to leave anyway. Chase be nice, okay?” She said and left before giving me an encouraging smile.
“Is it still hurting?” I asked, gesturing at his knees. He ignored my question and pulled a drawing book and pencil, and start drawing.
I waited for a moment, but he keeps ignoring me. “Can I sit on the bed; my foot is hurting, you know?” I pouted, pointing at my foot.
He lifted his face to stare at mine, a sudden flash of guilt came across his face, and he nodded his head. I bit my lips to hold my smile at my small success. At least he didn’t ask me to get out of his room. I sat in front of him and admired his grown-up features. He has that chubby cheeks, his hair has a cute cut; that gave him a proper and classy look. His blue eyes were sad, eyebrows scrunched. His tiny fingers were not tiny anymore. His drawing skills were shaper and defined.
“Stop staring,” I startled by his voice.
“Like Father Like Son,” I thought.
“Your drawing skills have improved,” I started with the small talk. He glanced through his eyelashes, and I just smiled. “Chase.” I placed my hand on his, but he jerked it and resumed his drawing. I signed and started again.
“I know you are angry with me, and it’s totally understandable. I left without any explanation. I broke your promise, your heart. But trust me, Chase. It was not easy for me too. I missed you every single day.” He paused, his head still bowed down. Taking that as a signed I continued. “Chase, sometimes, we grown-ups do some stupid stuffs and messed things up. Your daddy and I had a small fight, but it was my mistake, you know. I was stupid, and he got angry.” I placed my hand on his, and his time, he didn’t remove it.
“I am sorry, baby. Please forgive me.” I cried, holding his hand.
“Don’t cry, Anna. I am sorry for running away earlier. You got hurt because of me.” He sniffed back his tears. I shook my head and pulled him on my lap.
“No, baby. I deserve it for hurting you. I missed you so much.” I said, kissing all over his face.
“Anna, stop. It’s tickling,” he laughed between his pleads.
“Do you forgive me?” I asked, scared of his response.
“I was hurt and angry that you left me, but now that you are here with me again. I am not angry anymore, and I forgive you.” He answered and hugged me tightly.
I didn’t know how to react to that. I was relieved that he forgave me, but on the other side, I was terrified that, I will soon break his heart again. He believes that I return to his life for good but little did he knows his father wants nothing to do with me, and my stay here is just numbers.
“I know you’re upset with your daddy, but it’s not his fault that I left, he loves you so much Chase, please don’t be mad at him. He misses you. He misses his buddy. He is lonely too.” Rebuild the broken father-son relationship is the least I could do to redeem my guilt.
“Would you make it up with him?” I asked, praying to get a positive response. He didn’t say anything but nodded his head, and that’s all I needed.
“I wanted you to meet someone,” I said, breaking our hug. His curious eyes made my heart clenched. “Can you walk?” I asked.
“I am a strong boy, Anna.” He said, getting down from my lap. I chuckled, ruffling his honey-blond hair. “Not my hair, Anna.” He complained, pouting and setting them back.
“Now, you are complaining, huh. You used to love it when I did that.” I fake gasped.
“I am a boy now,” He answered shyly, making me melt at his cuteness. Aww...how much I missed his tactics.
“Let’s go.” I grabbed his hand, and we made our way to my bedroom.
I could hear the giggles of Hazel and Zach’s laughter from afar. Chase gave me a curious glance, but I didn’t say anything and keep walking.
I opened the door and got Hazel and Zach’s attention. They were having some cheese crackers and fruits. Hazel’s eyes went to Chase, and then to me, Chase did the same. Zach raised his eyebrows, where all I could do was, shrugged. I have told Hazel about Chase, but she doesn’t know how he looked. I pulled Chase’s hand, and we went to sit on the bed, beside Zach and Hazel.
Hazel was on Zach’s lap, and Chase was on mine. I could see both kids were narrowing their eyes at each other, must be wondering why their mom and dad were getting close to other kid. Zach’s eyes met mine, and I was sure he was also thinking the same.
I cleared my throat, grabbing everyone’s attention.
“Baby!” I called.
“Yes!” Hazel and Chase said at the same time and then quickly gave each other a deadly glare. Zach and I couldn’t help but chuckle, and our kids stared at us with confused eyes.
“Hazel, you remember, I told you about your older brother,” I stated, and she nodded her head eagerly. “Now, say hello to your older brother, Chase,” I said, running my hand on Chase’s shoulder.
Her eyes went wide, and she blinked a few times, before giving a full grin.
“And Chase, she is Hazel, your little sister,” I said, and he turned my way, looking shocked.
“Is it true, daddy? she is my sister.” Chase asked Zach.
“Yes, buddy. She is your sister. Isn’t she the cutest?” Zach asked, playfully pinching her cheeks.
Chase lifted his hand and pinched her cheeks just like Zach did.
“Yes, she is cute,” Hazel pouted, crossing her arms against her chest, earning a laugh from Chase.
“Do you want to play videogames?” Chase offered, and she nodded, getting off from Zach’s lap.
“Be careful,” I yelled when they ran out of the room. “Ufff... that was easier than I thought,” I exhaled.
“They will get along,” Zach stated, and I agreed. “How’s your leg?” He asked, and then I realized we were alone and on my bed this whole time.
“It’s better, now. Thank you for your help.” He nodded and rosed from the bed, clearing his throat.
“Tomorrow is Friday so, I have booked the Nine am appointment for the doctor’s visit. Will you be okay to walk?” He asked.
“Don’t worry about me. I’ll be fine as long as my daughter is out of danger.” I answered.
“She will be.” He promised, looking straight into my eyes. “Have some rest.” I nodded and he left closing the door behind him.
Later around 7 pm, I managed to walk downstairs for dinner. Chase and Hazel were already there waiting for us. John came with the food, Beth following him with dishes.
“The food looks yummy,” I complimented, after taking my seat, across the kids. John passed me a smile and start putting food on the kid’s plates. “You guys had fun playing games,” I asked getting curious.
“Yes! she was a bit slow at the beginning but picked up later on.” I smiled, knowing they were getting along. “She is very naughty though, she pulled my hair.” Hazel gasped and elbowed him to keep quiet. “But I forgive her, I mean she is my sister and she is cute so, it’s alright,” Chase explained, rubbing his tummy.
“Hazee....l,” I stretched her name in a strict tone. “Don’t bully your brother. I will not appreciate it okay. Now say sorry.” I asked, pointing my forefinger at her.
“Sorry, brother.” She held both of her ears, pouting sorry.
“Good girl. And Chase, if she ever repeats this you’ll come straight to me, okay.” I told him and he hesitantly nodded.
I could see that he will be a great brother and even will tolerate Hazel’s naughty actions but I don’t want that. I don’t want to spoil any of my kids.
“Sorry I’m late,” Mia ran towards us and sat next to me.
“What took you so long?” I asked, serving Chase, some pasta.
“Nick,” she said in a duh... tone and laughed. I looked around for Zach but he was nowhere not be seen.
“Chase do you know where daddy is?” I asked but he shook his head. Samantha joined us at the dining table and everyone started eating their food.
I thought it would be easy to deal with her. Living under the same roof, having multiple encounters fucking proved me so wrong. Damnit! What the fuck was I even thinking? She had been haunting my dreams for three years and I thought, it was okay to let her stay near me. I hate her, right? Then why it still hurt to see her cry. Why do I feel the pain when she gets hurt? When my whole body tingles when I touch her soft, silky skin.
Why the fuck she still have that effect on me?
We four looked like a real family back there in her bedroom. Only God knows, I would give everything in exchange to make that real. To make her mine again, to give Hazel and Chase a real family they deserve.
But I can’t. I can’t erase the image of her and Mason from my memories. I can’t just forget what they have done. It’s not easy. I leaned on my office chair, taking a deep breath.
A knock on the door broke my train of thought. “Come in,” I called.
“Daddy.” Chase’s mellow sound filled the room.
“Buddy,” I was shocked, it’s been so long that he had approached me in private. “Do you need something?” I facepalmed myself when realized the stupid choice of words. He walked ahead and stood in front of me. “What happened?” I asked again but in a more gentle voice.
He lifted his head to face me, and I noticed his moist eyes which just broke my heart. I picked him and placed him on my lap, and lifted his chin. “Hey! it is your knee. Should I call a doctor?” I asked worried by his silence.
“My knee is alright, daddy.” He finally spell some words and eased my worries. “I--I wanted to say sorry.” He hesitantly replied.
“For what?” I was confused now. He was behaving strangely.
“I avoided you and talk rudely. I’m sorry, I blamed you when Anna left.” He sobbed and I wiped his tears. “I missed you, daddy. But I was so angry with you and behave otherwise.”
“Did Anna say anything to you?” I know for sure, it has something to do with her. Otherwise, Chase wouldn’t be here.
He nodded, saying, “She said it was her fault and not yours. You guys fought and she left. She said sorry for leaving me and she missed me.” I hugged his little body tightly and inhaled his scent which gave me a sense of relief that I missed all these years.
“I indeed missed you, buddy. Thank you for forgiving me,” I don’t know what else Anna said to him, but I was more than happy to get my son back. “I love you, Chase, don’t ever forget that,” I assured him and he nodded pressing his head on my chest.
“You didn’t come for dinner? Are you not hungry?” He asked innocently, the old caring Chase was back.
“Well, now that you mentioned. I am starving.” He laughed and I picked him rushing out of my office, making him giggle.
It might be a boring chapter for few readers but, all these characters are hurt and need a closer before I start with new twists and turns. Don’t you worry guys, I have great things planned for the future chapters.
My other book, To Worlds Apart, is currently ongoing and I hope you will check that out too, make sure to leave your comments and feedback.
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