Tiff wasn’t entirely sure why she did this to herself. Why she tortured herself. Then again, who could torture her better? Shaking her head she took a deep breath and thought back to her most recent conversation about home “Have you gone home since you awoke” “yes, once, Dad and I got into it and I left.”
Those words radiated deeper than anyone could know. She had been in Britain about six months when she had met him. Accent, perfect, tall, handsome, muscular. He worked for an IT company. It was a bad idea to mix with those that weren’t awake considering the fact that she was just trying to figure out her life. However, Lilah always danced to the beat of her own drum so here they were. Six, seven, eight months into a relationship. It was all going well, until the first night he drank and laid a hand on her. Tiff had disappeared from the face of the earth, had taken a break from the world that she was trying to build. Lilah had been put on hold. Nothing else mattered besides a little time at home, redirect her compass and get back to it.
It was over Christmas and it was easy enough to say that she needed to be home for the holidays. Lilah had done her best to hide the bruise on her face, the black eye. Walking up the drive way after flying for a total of 36 hours with layovers was great. It had snowed and everyone was home. There were 6 cars in the drive way, grinning ear to ear she moved with the small bag she had packed. Why had she waited so long?
The door had flown open as though Tiff’s presence had been detected on some radar. Her dad shut the door behind him and headed towards her. Stopping dead Lilah looked at him, all but whispering “Hi Dad.” Lilah was different than Tiffany, had grown, had different experiences but every time she went anywhere near ‘home’ she automatically reverted to that scared girl that would do anything for approval.
Lilah kept the mantra go in with the worst intentions, and it probably won’t be that bad. Even though she had been prepared for the worst, his response was not at all what she could have fathomed up in even the worst nightmares. He looked her up and down and demanded to know where she had got the bruise. “Perhaps that will teach you a lesson to listen to someone. What?! Were you not there when he needed you, out gallivanting all over the country side like some night walker?!” Lilah, breath, in and out she repeated over and over again. She was berated for ever leaving. After all “When the world gets dark, doesn’t mean that you just walk out on those that you care about. You just turned your back and left, what? You think that you’re better than everyone you left behind?” Lilah couldn’t respond, stood there wordless as all the beautiful snow fell around her. It ended with her being told she wasn’t welcomed here anymore. After all, he was never –her- father.
Thoughts had swirled over Christmas ‘break.’ Lilah had spent the majority of it drunk and watching the Home Alone movies over and over again. She kind of felt like that kid, underappreciated and not missed. Though, at least in the end his parents and family had come looking for him. No matter what he did, no matter far off course he got, he was always wanted.
When Tiff had finally got herself pulled out of that, Lilah flew to Texas. It was not really out of the way, or that’s what she told herself. She had been there a thousand times before, she walked into the room, with a book and she moved to sit down beside Fletcher. Lilah had been there for hours, sobbing and reading, then talking. “I’ll keep in touch, Fletch, I promise.” Kissing his head, before she walked out she took one last look over her shoulder with a smile “Until we meet again, my friend”
Getting up off the chair in the kitchen, she moved and put the one and only photo she had out of her family, of her and her brothers. She put it back on the end table on the bottom shelf and whispered “I am so sorry, boys.” Lilah wiped her face on the sleeve of the much too big sweater that she wore, took a breath and then answered the phone. There was a pause before Lilah nodded, her voice as clear and normal as ever “Yeah, of course, I’ll head over to the library right now. Just send me a text with the particulars..”
The streets of Manhattan, constantly in the shadow of the towers in more ways than one. Here is where all Mage scenes and glimpses go.
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