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21 Chapter 2
I’ve devoted most of my life to protecting Teddy but there was nothing I could do to erase the fact that we didn’t know our father and that our parents had lied to us for sixteen years. Teddy and I spent the next few days alone in our rooms, blocking out civilization like hermits. I kept on wondering what my biological father looked like and I was pretty sure that Teddy did too.
‘He must have red hair like me and Teddy if Mom does not,’ I thought to myself. After moping around the house, I thought to do some research.
“Teddy?” I quietly called across the hallway in the middle of the evening. She slowly opened her door. Her eyes were bloodshot and her face was pale as a ghost. You could tell she hadn’t slept or eaten in a while.
“Yeah?” she weakly answered. Her voice was hoarse. I got up and retrieved a cup of cold water out of the bathroom for her and made her drink it. At least some of the color had come back to her face.
“I think we should find out who the donor was,” I said heading for our parents’ forbidden bedroom.
“A: We are never allowed in Mom and Dad’s room. B: Why should the donor want anything to do with us? Why do you think he hasn’t contacted us over the years? He doesn’t care about us Toby, get over it,” she roughly answered as she grabbed on my arm, pulling me out of the doorway.
“I wasn’t planning on trying to meet him or anything. I just want to know who he is. Don’t even tell me that you aren’t curious.”
“Fine, but why do we need to go into Mom and Dad’s room?”
“To get to the office, of course.”
“The bedroom is one thing but you know that the office is absolutely out of bounds!”
“Look, do you and do you not want to know who our real father is?”
“But nothing. I’m going in with or without you,” I said heading for Mom’s home computer in her office. Neither of us had ever been in the office before. It was basically just like the rest of the house; clean, overly organized, modern, and smelled like lilacs. Teddy stood in the doorway, trying not to touch anything or even breathe the forbidden air. Sometimes she could be very cautious for no reason at all. I logged onto Mom’s account after five failed attempts at the password. I searched all of the files in relation to anything that would make sense. Finally I got to Toby and Teddy Records.
Then I heard the keys rattling in the front of our apartment and I quickly printed out the entire file. By the time I got out of the desk chair, Teddy had already sprinted to her room. It was Mom who came in and her high heels were slowly approaching the door. I wouldn’t be able to get out the door in time so I ran to the window and climbed out. It was a narrow ledge but with the wad of paper in my back pocket, I was able to safely inch my way towards my bedroom window.
I made it just in time. Casually walking out to the kitchen, I saw Mom go into the office. Any other day she would notice that the printer was still on and even though the monitor was off, I forgot to shut it down.
“Hey, have you seen some paperwork lying around in a red folder?” she asked.
“Crap, it was a client’s paperwork on her divorce,” she said like I would actually care what it was, “Alright, could you tell me if you’ve seen it anywhere? I have to get back to work. Mrs. Smith could kill me if I don’t find it,” she said as she rushed out the door.
“That was a close one!” Toby exclaimed after Mom walked out.
“Well did you get the files open?”
“I did better,” he said with a smirk pulling out a wad of paper from his back pocket.
“And I thought I was the sneaky one,” I said laughing. Before we found out that Dad wasn’t really our father, he was so quiet and he had an extremely guilty conscious. One time when we were about ten years old, I tried stealing some gum out of a convenient store because our parents would never let us have candy and Toby made me go back to the store and apologize along with paying for it. He’s always been the voice of reason.
He unfolded the papers slowly. It was like he was trying to tease me. I couldn’t take the anxiety anymore so I snatched it from his hands and unfolded it faster. There were several documents on our health records. Mom had marked down the details about all of our illnesses or injuries from common colds to my broken leg in the 3rd grade and Toby’s chickenpox in the 1st grade.
She had all of our school records and my slowly increasing criminal record consisting of joyrides, trespassing, and vandalism. There was a time where I experimented with marijuana but Toby caught me and Isaac smoking in my room so he made me quit or he would report me to our parents.
He was not always the saint that he is now. Toby used to drink beer frequently and he would go out to parties and get wasted until he came home one time at 4 o’clock in the morning drunk and came into my room and tore down all of the pictures of Isaac. I flipped out on him when he sobered up and he stopped after that.
Finally I got to the documents on my mother’s pregnancy with us. She had all of the information about the donor that was required to be known. His name was Dr. Robert Green, he was 28 when we were born, he was allergic to strawberries, and he was a psychologist for the military. There was a picture of him. He looked just like Toby. Dr. Green had bright red hair like us, dark green eyes, and thick eyebrows. There was also an extended health record.
“Let me see!” Toby said impatiently. I was absorbing all of the information that I had just read as he read through the document.
“Let’s Google him,” I said fetching my iPad. I clicked on the best looking link. According to the military site that linked psychologists specialized in post-traumatic stress, he was also a musician, an athlete, and a professor at a college in Vermont. He was born in Boston, Massachusetts and had been living in Bennington, Vermont where his business of psychologists for every branch of specialized therapy was stationed.
Toby was looking over my shoulders as I read the random information. It seemed like he had it all going for him. It did not mention any form of companionship at all or children. He was a wealthy and talented man who lived all by himself with no family. His parents had been dead since 1995.
“He seems pretty interesting, but he must be lonely,” I said slowly. I felt bad for him; I could never imagine a life without family.
“Yeah, poor guy. But Teddy, don’t go getting any ideas. I’m sure he doesn’t want anything to do with us. Now that we know, let’s just give up; we already know who we are and now we have an idea about where we come from,” Toby sighed. It was too late. I wanted to meet this man and figure out as much about him as I could.
“I’m going to find him, whether you come with me or not. I wonder if we have any brothers or sisters,” I said as confident sounding as I could.
“I don’t want anything to do with this but he lives miles away and I know you, you will eventually go with or without me. I’d rather be there to protect you.”