Upside down

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XLV

The next day, Damon has agreed to meet Fredric in his office, before heading together to the clinic. The door is already open and when he enters, the three Anderson brothers are chatting under themselves.

Fredric is the first who notices Damon and greets him with a smile. “Good morning Damon.”

The three brothers turn and greet him as well.

“Good morning you all.” With seeing all the darkhaired, tall and masculine men, he feels a little shy. Though they look just like him.

Christopher walks to him and gives him a hug, giving him firm pats on his back. “Welcome, brother.” Christopher smiles genuinely when he pulls back. “I know this feels a little awkward, but I truly hope you’ll feel comfortable around us soon enough.”

Nicholas moves beside his brother. “I won’t be around as much as a want to, but I still hope we get to bond. I hope you’ll be visiting my pack with your mate sometime. You’ll always be welcome in my home.”

Damon smiles again. When he looks at Leo, he smiles. Leo gives him a wink but remains sitting at the corner of his father’s desk. “I think will get along just fine; don’t you think? You’re already well acquainted with my mate. There shouldn’t be any problems between us, right?”

Damon shakes his head. “Thank you all, this means a lot. I felt like I was going to impose to your family, I hope that you know that I never mean to break in or something.”

They all shake their heads. “We know you wouldn’t do that.” Christopher looks at Nick and Leo, before continuing. I think I speak for the three of us when I say that I hope you’ll get to know us more and that you’ll feel like you belong here, with us. You’re just as much an Anderson as we are; I hope you’ll truly see us as your brothers, just as how we see you.”

Damon nods, “I want to get to know you all. I’d like to feel like I belong. I’ve already felt more at home here than back at the Northern Lakes.”

He looks at the window outside and sighs. “What is it?” Nick frowns.

Damon shakes his head and shrugs. “I’m just sad that we never found out sooner,” he steals a glance at Fredric before looking back to the window. “It would have made things a lot easier while growing up.”

“Your mother never told me.” Fredric’s voice is low. “Your mother left the pack right after what happened. I never knew. Where is she anyway? I don’t remember you telling me about her.”

Damon shakes his head. “She and my dad, err, Richard, are fated mates, but their relationship was never particularly good. The cold and hard character of Richard must have played a role in that. Add a child from another man and the death of Richards own first-born; it was just destined to fail.”

Damon sighs. “My mother left just after James passed away. She couldn’t handle my father’s moods; she couldn’t handle the grief for her son and she definitely didn’t know what to do with me.”

They all are silent for a moment. Taking in the things Damon has told them.

“Have you ever been happy at all?” Christopher has an indecipherable look in his eyes.

“I was kind if happy before James accident. After that, not so much.”

“Man, I thought we had it rough, with dad’s abduction and our mum passing away, but we were all loved, we knew we were where we belong. You must’ve felt like an outcast.” Leo gets up from the desk and sets himself on the sofa, patting the spot next to him. “Sit with me.”

The four men shuffle over an take a seat on the sofas. When Damon sits next to Leo, he smiles a little. “It is what it is, I can’t do anything about it now anyway.”

“I truly hope you’ll feel welcome and loved here. This is the place where you belong, Damon. Time to make a new start here.” Nick reaches over and pats Damon’s knee. The others nod in agreement.

“Are you ready for this?” Fredric asks him, concern lacing his face.

Damon shakes his head. “I don’t think I’ll ever be ready. Though I know in my heart the results already, it just is something life changing. It’s turning my world upside down. I-“

Damon pauses a moment and closes his eyes to regain his composure. He feels a supporting hand on his back and then another on his knee. Another weight moves to his right, leaning against his right upper arm. “I just think that it’s a lot to take in, to process. I’ll need time to get clean with myself.” When he opens his eyes and looks up, he is surrounded by Andersons. Christopher in front of him with his hand on his knee, Leo to his left, who has a hand on his back, Nicholas to his right, leaning on the armrest and his arm.

Then at last, he feels two hands landing on his shoulders from behind. A comforting aura travels through his body and as if on cue tears start to run over his cheeks. He closes his eyes again, the grips on him become tighter. They’re all there to comfort him, and as if a missing piece falls into place, he feels like he belongs. He feels like they’re carrying his grief and his troubles with him. For the first time, he feels he is not alone.

Damon smiles through his tears. “Look at me all emotional and sappy.” He shakes his head. “who would have thought.” They all smile.

“I’ve got an idea.” Fredric’s voice comes from behind him. “What if we all come together with our families tonight. Have a good meal together, celebrate the fact that we have another addition to our family, and another grandchild on its way.”

“Sounds good,” Chris smiles brightly. “Can we help?”

“I err, I need to do something first. I mean right after the test, that is.” Damon looks a little insecure.

“Do you need help with anything?” Nick asks with a frown.

Damon shakes his head. “No, I need to do this one on my own. I err, I was planning on confronting Richard.”

“Today?” Chris brows shoot up.

“Yeah, I want to get it over with.”

“I don’t think that is a wise idea. Although we already know that you’re one of us, I’d wait to confront Richard until you have the official test results.” Fredric shakes his head.

Damon sighs. “Hmm alright then. Anything I can do to help in preparation for tonight then?”

“You bring the beer,” Leo grins. “Lots of beer. I’m planning on drinking tonight, just for once.” They all laugh.

“Ready to go?” Fredric pats on Damon’s shoulder.

Damon gets up from the sofa and smiles. “Sure. Let’s make it official, shall we?”

“See you at seven at home, boys. And err, bring your pyjama’s, you’ll be all sleeping at home tonight.” Fredric smiles, then turns and leaves the office, with Damon right behind him.

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