Goodnight Daddy

(Sequel to Are You my Father?)
"The baby's yours Dustin,"
But what happens when Dustin leaves unexpectedly...what do they do then?


5. Chapter 4


   My polar bear footsie pjs were now covered in more white...snow. Just my luck, in the middle of the night, alone with no one around, no one awake, no place to stay, only in footsie pjs, starts snowing... I love the snow...but right now I was freezing! My teeth were chattering within the first few minutes, my hands and entire body shaking uncontrollably. This was just great. I didn't even really know what I was doing out here. I guess looking for Dustin...but...should I be looking for him?! I mean really?! He was being a jackass back there, and the night he left! God I hated how he did that. He was all sweet one second, all caring, all loving, then BAM! he was a jackass with anger issues. But...somehow...I felt like I needed to follow him. Maybe it was just cause of the baby, just cause he was the father, just cause I thought I needed him. I didn't, but...I couldn't make my legs stop moving in the darkness. The voice that told me to go find someone's house to stay in and stop looking, stop searching...was quieted. By what...I didn't know. But something...something kept me searching, even against my own common sense. There was no light in sight until I turned a corner, and a small flickering light caught my eye. The light grew bigger as I neared, a small, dark figure sitting beside it. The small man was covered in ratty clothes, huddled in a blanket with many holes, and shivering to near death. His beard was scraggly, his face unshaven for many months. His eyes were wide and wild, fearing anything and everything that came his way. His small fire was built in a trashcan as he sat on cardboard boxes filled with who knows what. Slowly I approached, very, very slowly. I meant no harm, and I made sure he saw that when he looked at me with those scared eyes of his. I sat down cautiously next to him, letting him see that I really meant nothing but to share the fire. He nodded and turned back to the flickering light, but he still had his watch on me from the corner of his eye. Neither of us spoke as we sat there. My eyelids felt heavy as the heat from the flames hit my cold body. Slowly, slowly they fluttered closed, the last thing I felt was two hands gently pushing me down to lay on the ground, then a thin blanket covering my shivering form. I was too tired to object as I slipped into nothingness.


   Next thing I knew I was being shaken awake. My eyes fluttered open into the bright light of the day time. I didn't know what time it was, but that didn't matter right now. All that really mattered was placing the strange face that was so close to mine. His tangled white beard reached the middle of his chest, his brown eyes were dark and wild, scanning the area around us every few seconds, and the was no hair on the top of his head.

   "Get up girlie," he spoke. I shook the sleep from my eyes as I slowly sat up. His eyes kept darting around. "Get up!" he said more sharply, extending a hand for me to grab. His strength surprised me as he pulled me to my feet without me helping at all. His face came even closer, his rank breath washing over my face as he spoke, "Take this," he hissed. Something was shoved into my hand. I tried to uncurl my fingers but his locked over them, preventing them from opening. "No!" his voice harsh once again. Suddenly whistles and dog barks filled the air, shouts of 'over there!' cut through the silence of the day. The old man looked at me, squeezed my hand that was still under his, then pushed me back into the boxes behind me. "Hide!" he hissed before turning and running away, not looking back. Three police officers, and two dogs followed him a few seconds later. One dog pulled on its leash, trying to sniff out the boxes where I was hiding, but the uniformed man pulled him back, keeping him on the trail of the receding man. None of them noticed my eyes peeking out of a crack between two small cardboard boxes, but once they were gone, I shed the cover of them and walked towards where they disappeared. I didn't know what came over me, until I heard that sickening noise. Screams, hitting, groans of pain, whipping, and more screaming filled the air. I stopped dead in my tracks when I saw the scene in front of me. The small, frail old man was hunched over on the ground, panting heavily as the whip hit him over and over again. His cries of pain made me cringe. The men seemed relentless, never stopping. I sure didn't know the law here in France, but this sure seemed extreme. I turned away before I froze on the spot. But, before I did, I saw one of the police men rip something off his face, something pure white...his beard...I shuddered at the thought, maybe I was imagining it. I turned back around just to make sure, but sure enough his beard was off, but...something was different. He wasn't bald anymore, and a small amount of stubble adorned his face. He was covered in tattoos and piercings, something that I only now realized he had when he looked like an old man. His brown hair flopped all around his face as his bare back was whipped over and over again. He looked up with pain in his eyes, locking them with mine, like he somehow knew I was watching the entire time. 'Go!' he mouthed, then shouted, "Now, goddammit!" His voice shocked me out of my trance, pulling me back to reality as the men stopped their repeated torture and turned to look at me. I froze in place, looking at them as one smirked at me. Somehow...they didn't seem like real police officers anymore... The one's smirk grew bigger as he hit his bat against his hand over and over again, coming closer to me. My mind screamed 'run!'. but my body was frozen. Another shrill shriek from the bleeding boy on the ground hit my ears, and I able to move again. I gave him one last look before turning and fleeing as fast as I could.

   "After her!" One of them screamed. I heard the dogs barking again, and glanced over my shoulder to see two of the men following me with the dogs. Turning a corner, I dove into one of the alleyways, scrambled up a wall, and dove into an open doorway of an abandoned warehouse. Slamming the door shut, I took a deep breath, trying to calm the rapid rise and fall of my chest. The polar bear footsies were now slick with sweat, and I removed it to find myself in a thin black tank top and light pink spandex. I didn't remember changing into them, I sure didn't change into them at that doctor's place...did the old...I mean that homeless guy change me into these? He really didn't seem that old when his fake beard was off, maybe 17 or 18. How could someone so young be in that much trouble? Then I realized those people weren't real police, really could be anything that he was in trouble for...stealing...fighting...gangs...drinking...drugs...killing...and the list goes on. I shook the thought from my head as another pierced my brain. The small bag he had given me. I searched around the room for it, hoping I hadn't dropped it, because whatever it was...he certainly wanted to keep it safe. My prayers were answered when I found the small bag hooked on the zipper of the footsies. The small purple bag was made of velvet and had a small golden string that kept it close. Tugging at the string, the top loosened, and I dumped the contents onto a small box in the corner of the room. My face pulled into a confused look when I took in the contents. A wad of cash sat there held together by a rubber band. What was the money from? What was it for? My mind went back to the list, but I shook it from my thoughts before I tugged at the rubber band, slowly pulling it off. As I counted the cash my eyes widened, shocked. There was over 10,000 dollars here. All 20's and 100's. I shook my head, trying to clear my vision so I could count the money for real, but it was all still there. I had to count it over and over to make sure I wasn't counting wrong...I wasn't. My eyes swarmed with dollar signs when I reached for the rubber band to put it back around the wad of cash. As I tried to place it back in the bag, my fingers hit something else. Once again the confused look came over my face as I pulled out an envelope, folded a few times. I opened it up to find a note and some tissues. The note read:

You don't know my name, and I don't know your's. That's how it should be though, I don't want you in this anymore than you all ready are. The cash is your's, spend it how you wish, a small gift from me to you since I dragged you into this mess. If we ever meet again, you'll know it's me because of the present inside this envelope. It's my prized possession and I have the other half. Keep it with you all the time, never take it off, and never let it out of your sight, they'll use it against you. I can't hear you, nor do you know me, but...promise me this. Promise me you'll take it, take care of it. I need you to keep it until we meet again, hopefully that's a small favor, but I can't promise that back to you. Watch the news, look in the ads, somewhere, sometime, there will be a picture of the other half of this object I gave you. When you find it, you've found me. Please return it then. Only when you see this will you know it's safe to do so, don't come looking for me before then. Thank you, keeper of half my heart, I promise we'll meet again soon. Good luck.

P.S. Burn this note.

   Half my heart? I was more confused until I pulled out the tissues, feeling something inside of them. My fingers mover around to find some sort of cold metal pressed against them. I pulled it out to find half a heart locket. Now 'keeper of half my heart' made sense. It was a small golden heart with a delicate design on one side, and a small, black and white scene on the other. It was a drawing of a small forest, all the animals living in harmony. A small white rabbit rested up against a large black bear. A small fox danced around with a bird on its back. Everything was peaceful. After wrestling with the clip, I placed it around my neck. I would keep this for him. I didn't know why, I didn't know for how long, or what it would cost, but I knew that it was important. question did come to mind... Why me?

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