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Understanding a Father
I stood in the doorway. My daughter had lied to me. Abigail looked up; her arms remained locked around his neck. Watching that disgusting creature treat my daughter like this made me sick. Right there and then I wanted to knock him out. Teach him a lesson, to never come within a two mile radius of me or my Abigail ever again.
She looked as shocked as me. Who would have thought that it would all end up like this? My daughter, my young, naïve daughter, that was once no longer than my forearm, would end up with a slime ball like him. Her untamed dark hair tumbled past her shoulders as she flicked her head to look at him.
I couldn’t meet his eyes to give him the disgusted look I so wanted to. His back faced me. What. He wasn’t man enough to face me? Meeting the parents is supposed to be nervous enough but with what he’s done, I don’t think it could be any more nerve-wracking.
I daren’t blink while they were still in the room, together. I was afraid I’d miss something. Some sign of body language that I could use against him later on. But it was my little girl who didn’t move from her dominating position. She sat froze in the position she had been when I first stepped in and saw…them.
Abigail leaned forward, her fingers gripped to each other as she was determined not to move her arms from around his shoulders. She swung her legs around and kneeled on the sofa to tower over him and whisper something softly in his ear. Her eyes shut as he put his cheek to hers and whispered something back.
I moved slightly so I just see his expression.
His eyes were closed tight too as he kissed her on the cheek.
That was when I really lost it.
“Get out!” I could feel the house shake as I shouted at him. Nick immediately let go of her and swung his body around to face me. There was not one speck of fear in his eyes, but I could see right through him. He knew that I knew something he didn’t want Abigail to find out. Her grip on him became tighter as my anger level soared. But resisting her desire for him, he loosened her arms from around his neck and stood up just a few meters away from me. He could take one more step and that would be it.
“Get out of here you filthy creature.” I spat out. The anger in my voice could not be hidden. Neither could the sickening expression that tore across my face moments later.
“Upstairs. Now.” I made my demands clear to her. She didn’t take her eyes from him.
“You. Out.” My demands were clear to him too. He ignored me and turned to Abigail, who was cross legged on the sofa, hands shaking, eyes wet and full to the brim with emotion.
They exchanged a long look. How I managed to control myself during that time, I don’t know.
“Oi.” I shouted, finally getting his attention. He swung around, looking just about as angry as me.
“Out of here. Don’t say anything. Don’t go anywhere near her. Don’t try to justify yourself because we both know there’s no point in that. And you dare come anywhere near Abigail ever again and I swear to God…”
“Dad please just stop it.” My girls voice was shaky as she was pleading. “Leave him.” Her eyes brimmed to the top with tears. “I know you…”
“Abigail get upstairs now if I have to tell you one more time then I’m going to lock you in your room forever. Now off you go.” My voice was firm, anger being the only emotion that was showed throughout my threats.
“UPSTAIRS! NOW!” It seemed my voice echoed in the still, cold living room. The whole of the street probably heard me, but I didn’t give a damn.
She knew I was her father and anything I told her to do, she would have to do. As she looked up for support from him, he was stood closer to me than before, solid as a rock. Abigail took tiny steps as she approached her fuming father. But as she passed him, he broke his stare on me to grab her hand and gaze at her for one long second.
“Abigail, if you’re not upstairs in ten seconds I swear….” I didn’t have to finish my warning. She slid her hand from his, broke their gaze and pushed past me to dart upstairs. I waited for her bedroom door to slam, five seconds after she was out of the room there was the sound.
I took it as a queue to start arguing.
But it was him who beat me to it. “I know you wanna punch me right now.”
“Damn right I do.”
“I understand that.”
“Understand? What the hell do you understand? Nothing! You’ve never been in this situation before and don’t even pretend you know what I’m feeling right now.” He was in arms reach.
“OK then, do it. I’m stood here and ready to take it. Throw me your best punch. I’ll take whatever you can give.”
“You really shouldn’t say that. Now get out of my house before you do wind me up and I do begin to throw my weight around.” He stepped so he was a maximum of ten inches away from my face.
“I won’t fight back. The police won’t be involved. You let your anger out and…”
All that pep talking about fighting was making me want to punch someone. That’s exactly what I did. I swung around, clenched my fist and smacked him square in the jaw. He took a little step back and shook his head but apart from that, he seemed to take it pretty well.
“And again.” He wanted another one? I’m not complaining.
This time he stumbled back as I punched his nose, I think I heard it click. But he asked for it.
“Feel good?” He asked.
“So good I could do it again.” I laughed. I laughed? He crouched over, putting his hands on his knees in an attempt to steady himself. Then he stood straight back up and moved his neck to the left swiftly so that too clicked.
“We need to talk.” He said after a while.
“We, don’t. You, need to talk to Abigail.”
“I do talk to her.”
“Not about the things I want you to talk about.”
“What are those things then?”
My temper was beginning to run short again, I figured if he didn’t move and carried on being acting like an idiot, I’d punch him again and this time I’d make sure he wouldn’t get back up.
“I want you to stop leading her on. How much do you want?” I took my wallet out and took out a handful of notes. A mixture of ten and twenty pound notes, at least two-hundred quid, waited in my hand for him. “I can go out and get more if you like. Name your price.” He took in a long breath.
“Do you not understand the concept of true love and passion?” He was really winding me up. “Do you know how much she wants me?” The emotion in his voice was becoming very clear. “Do you realize how much she needs me?”
“What she needs is her family around her to help her make the correct decisions in life. The correct decisions so she can lead a long, happy life without a slime ball like you interrupting it.” I snapped.
“Call me what you like. I want her to be happy as much as you do. If that means her being with me, I’m surely to God the luckiest man on this earth. But if that means her being with someone else, then so be it. As long as she’s happy. With or without me. All I want is her to be happy with life.” He took a short breath “I don’t think you realize how talented your daughter is, she’s intelligent, funny, beautiful and very passionate.”
“Shut up.” I snapped.
“She’s old enough to make her own decisions in life. She knows what she wants. Mistakes are bound to be made and when they do happen she wants someone to fall back on that won’t say ‘I told you so’.”
“How do you know all of this?”
“I listen to her. She wants that too. Someone that will listen, that will always be there when she needs them, someone she can love and someone that loves her more than life itself. Abigail is a beautiful young lady. She wants to go places, she wants to be somebody, a somebody that is happy with their decisions in life, someone who can look back on their past years and be glad they made they did what they did. Truth be told. Right now, Abigail is everything to me. Without her, I don’t know what I’d do. My life would be in-complete. More than you can see. I love her.”
“You don’t love her.” I stated adamantly.
“I do. More than life itself. I’d kill for her. I’d die for her. I’d do anything. I want to be with her so much more than you know. What that young girl is feeling right now, you won’t ever feel.”
“That’s my point. She’s a young girl. She’s still my daughter. She’s my little girl.”
“She might be young but she sure has experienced a lot. And she’s handled situations that she’s been put in, like an adult. Her behaviour and attitude towards life is astonishing. What she can feel at the age of fifteen, most people won’t feel in their lives, not once.”
I shook my head.
“It’s true. And, with all due respect, she’s passionate, stunning, sensitive, and fervent.”
I slammed the door to a loud close. Grabbed the collar of his t-shirt and pushed him against the wall. “Don’t you ever say that about my baby girl ever again. You got it?” He didn’t reply. I pushed back on his throat. “You got that?” I repeated louder. After a few seconds I let him go and stepped back for him to get past.
“I love Abigail.” He reminded pushing past me.