Chapter Twenty-Seven: Home
From what I remember, when I first met Zara, I was injured. How did I manage to get to her orphanage? Is easy. The ghost lady guided me to my own nephew. How? I don’t know. I remember following a white mist at the time, which is weird at the same time. Why did I get hurt? I was running away from the cops and somehow, I was hurt during the progress, my mind still doesn’t remember how.
I leaned against the tree, with my arms cross watching the children play outside. Zara is sitting on the chairs, with Sophy in her lap, while Dusty sat across her. Zara’s hair has grown out a lot, is down to her back. For some odd reason, she looks breath taken.
The children, the smaller ones, are a few inches taller than last year. Issac looks more grown and Lilly she looks the same. I can feel is happiness in them.
“You should go, instead of hiding in the shadows.” I heard behind me. I shrug.
“She doesn’t need more baggage,” I said in a low voice, turning my head to see Paul looking amused by the scenery.
“I know you’re still grieving about your sister’s death, but you need to move on. It’s been ten months already.” Paul said. I look up at the blue sky.
‘My world died when the police told me that Joan was found dead in her home last year. I don’t know how long I cried. How I hated the world. Is not fair. I couldn’t’ even see her. The man that killed them suicide himself, so justice was not served, I hope God has taken care of him. I’m not yet ready to forgive him, not just yet, but soon I will, if I have forgiven my uncle, then I can forgive anyone. ′
“Silver sentence is set, he’ll be in jail for the next fifty years. Apparently, he did more crime besides kidnapping Armando. Also for Philip, he told me to tell you, if he finds you once again in the underground, he’ll kill you.” Paul said in a blank tone.
“Send him my love as well. I’m just happy that everything is over with. The other two morons are still up trying to sell the orphanage, but with your protection, they can’t do anything. I do thank you.” I said., as I push myself away from the tree and place my bag on my shoulders. Starting to walk away from the orphanage.
“She’s doing something for us, so I have to protect our family. Where are you going? Your love life and your nephew are over there,” Paul points behind me, as I lifted my gaze to look at the horizon.
“I need to visit one more person before returning,” I told him, leaving Paul. Paul sighs as he shakes his head.
“This boy is going to be the death of me.”
I place the flowers down on the tombstone and sigh.
“Hello there Joan,” I whispered, moving to touch her tomb. Is a simple tomb, with a white tombstone that says, Beloved wife and mother. Next to her is her husband’s tomb. His name was James Parter.
“I promise to take care of your son. Thank you for leaving him behind for me. In a way, as painful as it sounds, it’s’ a blessing that Armando was kidnapped that day. Not because I’m glad he got separated from you because escaped death twice. A good woman took in your son. The most beautiful woman I have ever met. So be at ease. I wish you were alive to meet her, as well is not fair to you.” I smiled, as I felt my tears roll down my cheeks. Sun is already set in the distance. I sat on the ground, just thinking about nothing. I wrap my arms around my legs, and lower my head and started to cry even more.
“I miss you!”
“Ciel!” I heard my name, while I was going to get in the taxi. The graveyard isn’t too far from the underground. I turned to see Rose coming up to me. I arched a brow.
“Hey, Ciel, where you’re going?” she asks when she reaches me. I bend down and told the driver to wait for a second. He nods as I straighten up.
“I’m going home!” I told her.
“Oh? Can we go out again? I did have fun last time when we went out.” she smiled at me with hope in her eyes.
“I had fun as well. Thank you for cheering me up, but I’m back to my real home now,” I told her as I reach out and shuffle her hair. Rose pouts and wraps her arms around me.
“To her? You finally want to accept someone to take care of your heart?” She whispers into my ear. I nodded, moving my head to see her eyes.
“At first I didn’t want to be a bother to her, but I realize something,” I move to tug her hair behind her ear. Her eyes soften.
“That you can’t live without her?” she asks. I nodded, as I cup her cheek.
“It’s driving me crazy. Thank you for being there for me Rose. I’ll stop by the store soon to buy a nice dress for Zara.” I told her. She tips, toes and kisses right near my lip.
“Thank you for giving me a new life. Now that my father’s debts are almost paid off, I can live normally. The only thing I do wish, that I would have won your heart. I don’t know when I fell in love with you, but I love you, Ciel. You’re the first man that treated me as a woman and respected me. I don’t even know how to repay you.” she tells me. I felt my heart break at her confession. I lean forward and kiss her forehead.
“You are just like a sister to me. Find yourself a good man to love you and love him back. Just be my friend, is all I ask in return and be good.” I simply told her. She nods, taking a step back.
“I’ll try, but you’ll always be in my heart Ciel. Thank you for everything you have done for me. I’ll see you soon, and when I do, I have to meet your nephew and your seven other children. Then I want to meet that woman that took your heart. She’s a lucky woman.” she smiles. I nodded as I enter the taxi and close the door. I look back to see Rose waving at me. I smiled gently at her and waved back.
I touch where she kissed me, and sigh.
“Would it have been simpler if I have met Rose first? Maybe I would have fallen in love with her first? Yet, somehow, I knew no matter what, my heart would have just gone to Zara. I can’t see Rose as a lover, but as a younger sister.
I leaned my head back, looking at the taxi roof, feeling my heart race at the thought of going back to Zara.
“Sir? Where are we going?” he asks. I looked down and chuckled at him.
“Home. I’m going home.”
Like always, I arrive at the orphanage at midnight. After I pay my fee, I slam the door and place my bag over my shoulder and walk towards the door of the orphanage. I took a big breath and gave a loud knock. Thunder roared into the skies, as a heavy rain starts to pour hard. I look up at the night sky.
“Funny God, really funny,” I mumbled, remembering that this is how Zara and I met for the first time. I reach out and knocked again.
The door finally opens, and a loud scream echoes the entrance.
“Ahh!” I heard as thunder pierced right behind me, lighting our way. I watch as Zara rushes towards me with a bat, ready to hit me. I drop my bag and held the bat between my hands. She becomes drench, as her eyes land on mine. I smirked at her. I watch as her white gown stick to her skin, showing me more than the necessities. Her skin becomes damp, as her now long hair plaster down. Her chest rose giving me a good view of her breasts. I smirked at her.
“Here’ we go again, huh lady? The big bad wolf came to claim his red riding hood.” I whispered. She drops the bat and wraps her arms around me, claiming my lips. I move and wrap my arms around her small waist. I felt in heaven, kissing her back with the same passion. I missed her, my whole being missed everything about her.
We separated to get air, as another thunderous sound roared in the sky.
“Yes...” she said out of nowhere. I blinked, confused by her sudden words.
“Yes?” I asked, she nods, hugging me tighter. I huff out.
“Yes, yes, and yes.” she starts to cry.
“I’m lost, you don’t mind me taking you?” I asked. She shook her head.
“Take me wherever you want, just bring me back before the children wake up. Are you ready to come back to me? The children are getting mad at you for leaving for such a long time. Armando wants to spend time with his uncle.” she changes the subject. I actually laugh and nodded.
“I was a coward, didn’t want to burden you with my issues. How the hell did I make you fall in love with me?” I asked. She shrugs, as she leans forward and kisses me gently.
“Easy, you became my midnight miracle. And I’m sorry for your lose!” She whispers, wrapping her arms around me, burying my face in her crook of her damp neck. I closed my eyes, as fresh tears suddenly came out, as I tighten my grip around her.
“Thank you!” Is all I said.
“There, please don’t run too far,” I shout.
We are outside, watching everyone having fun. This morning, the whole orphanage was chaotic. Everyone hugged me until I couldn’t breathe any longer. I fell right back at home.
“Armando, by now you know, I’m your uncle?” I asked him. He nods, as I picked him up and place him in my lap.
“Sorry I came late, I was being grumpy pants and didn’t have face to face you,” I admit. Armando looks up at me with his innocent eyes. My heart filled with a strange emotion. I wrap my arms around him and kiss his cheek.
“I won’t leave you ever again or your brothers and sisters,” I told him. I felt him grab a hold of my shirt.
“I.. I love Ciel,” he said in his stuttering voice. I smiled widely at his words.
“I love you to Armando. Soon, I’ll take you to see your mom and dad. Us two, alright.” I told him. He seems to hesitate, that he turns to face Zara, which is hanging clothes up.
“You can if you feel comfortable with it Armando,” she tells him. Armando nods, looking back at me.
“Then is a deal?” I asked him. Armando kisses my cheek and hops down to go to his brothers and sisters. I smiled, as Zara goes up to me. I look up at her.
“You aren’t’ a burden to me. I should be angry at you for leaving us for so long.” she said. I wrap my arms around her waist, making her gasp, as I bury my face in her warm stomach.
“I just needed some time. I couldn’t hear your voice, if not, I would run to you and cry like a baby.” I admit.
“Silly, why didn’t you? After all, I’m a mother of Eight. It comes with the job.” I felt her fingers run through my hair. I look up at her.
“Because it was my own burden to carry. I’m used to carrying it by myself. I couldn’t’ even face Armando. Now, I can. I’m ready.” I told her. I stood up and look down at her.
“Then do you accept me back? This time I’m ready to stay. I bloody missed you so much. It hasn’t been a day that I haven’t thought of you. I promise that I was faithful to you as well. ” I assured her. She smiles at me.
“I know, Paul had me in the latest with your love life, and you still have that trauma, is not easy to get over with. Didn’t I tell you? I trust you with my life.” she tells me. I smiled at her.
“You know me too well.” I chuckled, kissing her cheek. Then I frowned, as her words came back to me.
“About last night, you said yes? Yes of what?” I asked her. She blushes hard.
“I am answering your wish. Yes, I will marry you,” she said. I blinked, confused by this.
“Wish?” I asked. She frowns.
“The wish you wrote last year? Well, you had Issac write for you. Remember?” I blinked at her words, as memories start to dawn on me.
“Oh, yeah, I remember it. Okay, you’ll marry me.” I said seriously, not getting it too well, but then my eyes widen.
“Wait? What?” I asked in shock, as the children rush towards us.
“Hey, your mom just accepted Ciel. I’m going to marry him! Now I will have a husband and you all have a Papa!” Zara shouts as the children cheered loudly. I look back at Zara.
“So Ciel is going to be our papa? That means that Ciel loves mama?” Isabella asks. I look back at them.
“I never stopped loving Zara, actually, I think I love her more than ever. Just like my love for you all has grown.” I assure them.
“Good to know, then kiss her, she accepted.” she pushed. I nodded, as I wrap my arms around Zara and picked her up. She gasps as I claimed her lips.
“Ewww!” I heard the children say. Issac rolled his eyes. Zara kissed me back with a gentle care as I place her down.
I turned to see every child covered their eyes with their hands. I laughed along with Zara.
“Then can we marry in a week?” I asked her.
“In a week?” she asks surprised. I nodded.
“I can’t spend one more minute without you. I know someone that can make you a wedding dress. She’s a woman I spend some time with. Also, I can speak to the priest in the church.” I told her. She frowns, not liking my words, but then I kiss her cheek.
“She’s like a sister to me. I only have eyes for you.” I assured her. She kisses my cheek back.
“Good, in a week, we will marry.” she smiles. I felt someone pull my hand.
“Come with us Ciel, let’s play shadow. It’s been a long time.” Oscar pleads.
“Do I have to play?” I asked confused. Zara went to grab Sophy from the ground near the hangers and place her in her arms.
“Yes, you own them. Since Sophy recovered from being sick, she can join in as well.” She tells me. Sophy claps, smiling broadly at me.
“Fine. Alright little ducks, get in line, this time you’ll be following Isaac,” I place not wanting to be first this time around.
“Hey, don’t put me in front of the line.” but I shook my head at him.
“Follow Isaac, whoever loses, has to eat broccoli, pure broccoli with no dessert,” I shout just teasing them. Every kid gets in line in a rapid matter, as I move to grab Zara hand. Issac sighs with a shake of his head. Zara gave me a dark look as to say, ‘Why did you say that?’
“Go, Isaac, I don’t want to eat broccoli.” Oscar said. I burst out laughing, as Zara sighs.
“Now I have nine kids to raise.” she said in a symbolic way, causing me to look at her and kiss her lips gently.
“Trust me, after our honeymoon, you won’t be saying I’m a child,” I assured her. Her face turns red and looks away.
“Not in front of the baby,” she whispers. I laughed even more, as we followed the children. I felt this parental love for these children grow. I never knew that I had. Maybe is from the lack of it, I had when growing up.
For the first time, I felt at ease. I hope Joan is seeing this, that his two loved ones, her beloved son and her younger brother are together. That I’ll be okay and finally I have a place to call home. I turned to face the woman I love.
“I love you,” I whispered. Zara smiled, as she turns to face her children.
“I love you!” she yells at everyone.
“We love you!” they shout back, but didn’t break the line. Then I held tighter Zara hand. She turns to face me.
“I love you all as well!” I shout back at the children, feeling awkward.
“We love you as well Ciel!” they shout back.
“I love you as well Ciel. Thank you for coming back to us.” she kisses my lips.
“Thank you for having patience with me. So explain to me, how am I your midnight miracle? ” I asked. Causing Zara to shake her head.
“No!” she blushes, letting go of my hand and moves away from the line. I pointed at her.
“Oi, she moved, she lost the game, get mama bear!” I yelled. The children turn to look at us.
“Go!” I yelled as I start chasing my future wife. She screams, holding Sophy hard so she won’t fall. The rest starts to follow along.
Even if our lives is not the best or easy, we can make the best out of it. With the right person and the right love, anything and everything are possible, with God grace that is.
I never regret that night. The night I met Zara.
‘It wasn’t her midnight miracle. It was Our midnight miracle that passed each day.’
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