FOURTEEN*

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Fourteen:

I followed Leon down the staircase towards the dining room with my arms folded behind my back. I had to be dressed in formal attire, which meant I was wearing a pale purple goddess-style dress and gold gladiator sandals. Not that I was willing to wear such a get-up, or even own one for that matter, it was all Talia’s doing. She was the cunning master-mind, and she got what she wanted.

Poor Austin, I thought, he was going to have a hard time. Poor guy was screwed from the start.

Since I was a perfection freak, no matter what it was I needed everything needed to be perfect, so I ended up curling my hair. Talia had made me do all this girly stuff one night, she made me learn how to do makeup and hair quick and simple. I protested every step of the way, but right now I was slightly grateful for what she did. Everyone here knew that I was last person in the universe to ever be prevailed upon to wear makeup or do my hair, yet here I was, doing both. I was shocked with myself.

Talia would be proud.

We walked into the room and a few people were seated at the table, one of which was my father, Henry Trenton. His dark hair that used to fall in his eyes, but now it was buzzed short. His blue eyes, which used to hold so much joy and contentment, now were dull and lifeless. My dad, my superman, was broken. I felt my heart twitch in my chest. I couldn’t have done this, I just couldn’t. He was...

My dad was the strong one; he was the glue that had kept me from killing my brother when I had the chance.

He was the last hope I had of becoming a part of the family again.

Now...what was going to happen? He looked like walking dead.

His eyes landed on me for a second and they widened. From their depth I could a small glimmer of something spark to life. It was something that almost gave me hope.

Almost.

Not enough that I actually believed it.

I sent him a tentative smile and he stood up from his chair and walked towards me. He stood a foot away from me, staring at my face like he wanted to memories my every feature. My gut twisted with guilt. The guilt for what I had done to him. A sob choked my throat, but I swallowed it down. He was going to see right through me, I knew that.

If I saw my mother she would know in an instant. A small part of me wanted them to know, to know that I wasn’t dead and that I was safe. But not in a room full of werewolves with super sensitive hearing.

“Hello,” he said timidly, which was knew for me. He wasn’t scared of anything, not my dad. But the man in front of me was everything that my dad was not.

I swallowed past the lump in my throat and smiled at him. “Hello,” I replied just as timidly. My palms were sweating, so I clasped them together in front of me to keep from rubbing my fingers across my palm, which was what I did when I was nervous. He knew that, mum knew that, everyone knew that.

He gave me a small smile and extended his hand towards me. “I’m Henry Trenton, Kieran’s father,” he said, but when he said the part about Kieran I heard a slight twinge of disappointment.

“I’m Brooke Hope,” I said, shaking his hand. My hands were trembling and I could feel my knees giving out. Damn my nerves.

“It’s a pleasure to meet you,” he said, his smile growing wider as he dropped my hand. “I’ve heard great things about you. I’m sorry but my wife is unable to make it down for dinner.”

“It’s perfectly fine,” I said, even though something sharp was stabbing my chest. “Send her my condolences that we couldn’t meet today.”

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