My Blood

October 13, 2007
“Are you scared?”, he asked

“No,”, I lied

My heart beat so loud that I couldn’t hear anything over its pounding. My knees wobbled. I couldn’t think. I just knew I had to do this.

Johnny offered me his hand and I gratefully held it. He felt so warm considering the dangerously cold breeze.

“You don’t have to do this you know?”, Johnny pointed out, “I could call it off”

“No”, I insisted, “I want to see him”

We continued to walk down the wet, slippery sidewalk. I felt my stomach tie up in knots and just about anything could get me bursting in tears. We stopped at the double doors of a tall building.

“This is where he lives?”, I asked, knowing the answer.

“Yeah”, Johnny replied.

We walked to the front desk and I let Johnny do all the talking. My voice was too shaky anyway.

“12th floor”, Johnny said as we stood in the elevator. I pushed the button. My breathing became less frequent. Much too soon the doors opened again.

Johnny took both my hands and in a low voice said, “Don’t let him talk you down. You’re strong and if he hurts you, call me—“

“—Johnny”, I interrupted, “I’m sure I’ll be fine”

“You still sure you want to see him?”, Johnny asked

“I’m sure”, I regretfully said

He nodded, aware that he couldn’t change my mind. He led me to apartment number 1213. 13… That’s an unlucky number…

I looked at Johnny one last time. He kissed my cheek lightly and told me he’s be waiting in the lobby. Once Johnny was out of sight and knocked, holding my breath…

It opened a crack. His big, brown, bloodshot eyes looked at me. My whole body locked.

Then, he opened the door all the way, “Come in”.

I slowly walked inside. I found myself standing a big apartment building. I had never seen such luxury before. Nor had I seen a more breathtaking view of New York City.

He motioned for me to sit on the couch opposite of him. I did, feeling my nerves become less uptight.

He pulled a cigarette out of his pocket and lit it, “Want one?” he offered.

I shook my head, “No thanks. I’m trying to quit”

He shrugged his shoulders then took a deep drag. He looked very different. He was older. He had more wrinkles and gray hairs. He was fatter. He was tired.

“Wow”, he began, “You’re hardly recognizable Diane”

“My name’s Dina”, I said, “And it’s been sixteen years”

“Oh right, right…”, he said, “I got you confused with uhhh…”

“Dad”, I began, “Why did you decide to call now?”

He sighed and threw his cigarette into the tray. After clearing his throat he said, “I was wondering if you could help me”

I knew it… I had known all along this was all he cared about. I was fighting back my tears.

“I don’t know if Johnny told you—“

“—He did”, I interrupted

“Oh… Well… What do you think?”, he said slowly. He was apparently happy. He was so sure that I would agree. He was so wrong…

“Why?”, I asked, “What makes you think I’d help you?”

“You’re my daughter. My blood. No one else could do it!”, he said

“If I was your daughter”, I snapped, “You would’ve been there for me!! I wouldn’t have spent all those years locked up!!!”

“It was a tough situation!”, he said

“Sixteen years!!!”, I spat

He was upset; but not nearly as upset as me. I watched him slowly turn red from rage. He was used to things always going his way. But not this time…

I got up and headed towards the door.

“Dina!!! I’m going to die!!”, he yelled

“So be it…”

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