ENDS

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23- Rejection

Hunter's P. O. V.

You know that feeling you get when it seems like you've acquired too much information in such little time space?

Yeah, that one with the extreme headache and epiphanic stomach upset?

Exactly.. I'm experiencing its worse case scenario at the moment.

" Before we go further into any information, I want to know. Is Meredith spying for him? "I asked with a grip of fear around my throat.

" If Pedro could get his hands on his daughter, I think his first plan would be to place her under his protection based on the number of enemies he'd created" Mr Reid contradicted my opinion and no doubt's, I felt relieved.

" So what about Meredith? " better to know it now than never.

" Ah.. Sa'adia" Mr Reid sighed and a small smile graced his lips as he took his seat. " After nine years of being trained and taught as my daughter, Pedro escaped from prison and decided to make my life a living hell"

" how? "

" Well son, Pedro came for revenge. Actually, the truth is... From the beginning, I had no idea that he had escaped from jail. My family and I had been living normal lives, moved to Jackson town, got normal daily jobs and our kids were schooling at the state institution. Everything seemed to be going well.. Actually, a little too well for someone who had definitely offended Pedro but it didnt take long for my worst fears to come into reality "

I really didn't need to ask him what were his worst fears, with Pedro anything is possible.

" Michael would never be able to use his legs again all because of him. A late night walk with Meredith and he was beaten beyond recognition. At first I couldn't link it to Pedro, in fact I had no idea it could be him but things kept happening "

To be honest, how Michael ended up in a wheel chair was a question I had always wanted to ask but felt out of place to do so.

" Mason had gotten attacked once.. Survived knife stabs to his gut. Meredith had been terribly sick and was placed under admission in the hospital. Mason was practically the only person who spent most of his time there, he decided to come home as usual by eight pm every night since he began visiting Mer there and he was attacked out of no where and stabbed twice in the stomach. Luckily for us some hospital staffs who were on their way home saw him a few feet from the hospital, laying half conscious and in a pool of his own blood. We were called in as soon as he was rushed for an emergency treatment. Funny enough, I still couldn't link it to Pedro "

" You couldn't link another attack on your kids to Pedro. How exactly did you link it then? " that was my major curiosity, how was he able to tell Pedro was responsible?

" A lot more things happened. Mary was kidnapped and while in the custody of her kidnappers she was injected with a substance that affected her speech. If you've noticed, Mary doesn't really talk, although she can say a line or two but she'd sound like a slurring child so she prefers her silence. But I assure you, her brain is the greatest man calculator and analyst you can find" Mr Reid said with a smile seemingly proud of his daughter no matter the defect.

" And Michelle.. She was gang raped at the age of twelve. Three men. Most traumatic experience of her life and the way I figured out Pedro was responsible. When asked to describe the men all she could remember was a similar tattoo the three men had in common. A very large letter P and a skull to go with it. Nothing was more epiphanic than that. I believe by then, he had realized that I knew he was responsible. Hence I started getting threat letters from him to return his daughter to him and that is the last thing I'd ever do to Meredith "

Mr Reid sighed and rubbed a hand across his forehead like he was recalling a memory he deeply wanted to forget.

My cold feet doubled from hearing Michelle had been raped. How come she had never told me about it?

Do you think Iris would have easily told someone else that you had raped her too?

That thought was enough to silence me.

" One night" Mr Reid continued " I had gone out with my wife to make plans on how to let Meredith go completely. We couldn't silently or secretly hand her over to someone because Pedro would still think we've got a hold on her and are trying to hide her away from him, he'd still come after my family and at that point we had been through a lot. So I made plans with my cousin, who was a cop at Saint Alamos. We wanted to openly reject Meredith so Pedro could easily find out that she was no longer under my custody but the only way to assure Meredith's safety was to make sure she was under the law.. "

" That was where your cousin came in" I chipped in.

" Exactly.. And Pedro had rules, you don't meddle with the law and they shouldn't meddle with you"

" How did you openly reject her? "

" It would be a very suspicious incident if we just started shouting and a passing officer decides to take her home. So we took a while to make plans, bit by bit we saved all our necessary documents and decided on what to do. On the night of our wedding anniversary, The actual plan was to leave all out kids at home, Meredith had been talking about making a surprise cake to Mason which he subtly told us about. So when Meredith goes into the kitchen to start the cake, we'd set the attic on fire. The person hired to do it was to ensure everyone was downstairs before starting the fire and alerting them about it, just to make sure no one gets hurt. But all the kids had gone out that evening while we waited for the plan to be executed. Only Meredith stayed behind to make the cake and after it had been carried out, we arrived home, pretended to be surprised but a little shocked to realize Meredith was the only one home.. "

" But that made the plan more believable "

" Yes, a lot more believable but also extremely painful. A small crowd had gathered and so had our kids. We began blaming her for the accident and openly rejected her.. " Mr Reid paused for a while to catch his breath.
By the way his eyes were glistening, it was obvious the memory hit him as hard as it did on the same day.

" I'd never forget the pain in her eyes while she cried and looked at me. Silently begging me, silently apologizing for what had happened, Silently wishing that I hadn't just rejected her. But I did and it broke my heart too much to watch her any longer, so i walked away with all my kids except Mer. My wife couldn't leave the scene, she was in full tears but I had to drag her away for our safety. And that was when my cousin took Meredith in. "

" So Meredith came under custody of the law.." I continued

"By paternal rejection "

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