We came to a tiny cafe, hidden from the view of the main road, down an alleyway. We entered, and Patrick motioned for me to sit. It was strange to think that I was with my father, who I had imagined all my life. I looked around and chose a seat in the corner, as I usually did, and lay my head down on the cool metal table, trying to clear my mind of the headache that was threatening to take hold. I heard Patrick ask the girl at the till if she could leave us to talk in private, and heard the telltale rustle of money being handed over. Wisely, the girl decided to take the cash, and leave us alone in the room.
I went over the patterns on the linoleum with my eyes as he came to the table, and scraped the chair back before sitting down opposite me. I sat up and studied him. His dark brown hair, the same colour as mine, was cut very short, and he had the beginnings of a beard. He was handsome, and very young; I must have been born when he was not much older than I. Patrick patiently waited until I was finished, with a faint glimmer of amusement in his eyes.
“So...” I said, breaking the silence.
“So.” He repeated.
“You’re my father.”
“Yes, I am your father.”
“Okay...” I said, then looked out of the window.
“As I said before, I suspect you have many questions... Some I will be unable to answer.” He said quietly. I looked back at him.
“Well the first is probably incredibly obvious.” I said. “Why did you give me up?” He sighed.
“It’s complicated.” He said. I smiled.
“I suppose it was... pressure. From the family, that is.” Patrick said slowly. “Anything else?”
“I wanted us to tell you together, but she didn’t want to. I don’t think she could handle the pain. She is a very... fragile woman.”
“Do I look like her?”
“I think you are unique, perhaps the best of both of us.” He smiled. “You have the same eyes as her though.” It was an unbelievably awkward situation, to meet your father for the first time. Many people will never have to deal with such a thing. Lucky for them.
“I don’t really have anything else.” I admitted, after thinking for a while. My father leant forward, placing his hands in front of him on the table.
“Then there is something we need to discuss.” He said to me.
“Yes?” He sighed.
“It is very... difficult. I must ask you to listen with an open mind.” He said. My head tilted to the side questioningly.
“Alright.” I said.
“What do you know of the gods of ancient Greece?” He asked me. I shrugged.
“Not much. Just things from museums.” I smiled “You don’t get a very good education in an orphanage. Why do you ask?”
“The worship of the gods was pretty much wiped out with the coming of Christianity; however that is not the only reason for its demise. The gods disappeared, and so people had little proof of their deeds, and with lack of proof comes doubt. With doubt, comes disbelief.”
“Why did the gods disappear?” I asked, very interested in the story, although not sure how it was relevant.
“Because they were told that they were in danger. And so they decided to vanish, and return at a later date. Do you understand this?”
“Yes I do. Why is this information so urgent to me?” I asked, leaning back and crossing my arms.
“You see... you are very special. As am I, as is the rest of our family. I know it is difficult to believe, but we are the reincarnation of the gods.” He said to me matter of factly. I laughed a short laugh, but stopped.
“Are you serious?” I asked.
“As the grave.” He said, then looked around. “Do you have anything for me to write on?” He asked. I pulled a notebook and pen out of my bag and handed it to him. He began to draw as he spoke. “It is very complicated. Five of us decided that it was best to become human, and when we died to return in two thousand years. We would then return to Mount Olympus and resume our duties, even if we were no longer worshipped. And so...” He said, then handed me the notebook back. It was a family tree. “Here we are.”
“And which god are you?” I asked. He smiled.
“Think about it.” He said. I looked from the drawing to his face. We sat in silence for a moment before it dawned on me.
“Poseidon.” I whispered, and he tilted his head in acknowledgement.
“That means that I am...”
“Persephone.” He said. I felt chills crawl down my spine, and it was as if a bell had rung. Persephone...It just felt right. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but I knew that he was telling the truth. It also explained the many strange occurrences that had happened in my life.
“But what I don’t understand is why you had to give me up.” I said, frowning a little.
“It was believed that it would be better for you to grow up away from us.” He told me, a sad expression on his face. He took my hand, which was on the table, in his. “Believe me, Kyria, your mother and I never wanted it. We fought Zachary every step of the way, from your conception to when he took you away from us. We loved you so much. We still do.” I felt a tear run down my cheek, but I soon gained control of my feelings and didn’t allow anything more.
“And Zachary is Zeus.” I stated.
“Yes.” Patrick said. There was a moment’s silence.
“What happens now?” I asked. He smiled a little.
“We will all meet, and then together we shall use the power needed to return to Mount Olympus as gods once more.” He stood up. “We can travel there in my car; we are meeting quite far away.” He said. I also stood, and we left to little cafe. As we walked I asked him,
“What should I call you?” He looked at me over his shoulder.
“Well, I would like any variation on ‘father’, but I completely understand if you would rather call me Patrick. Although it will be Poseidon when we return home.” He said to me solemnly. I hesitated.
“Let me think about it, please. But I am sure that ‘dad’ is not out of the question.” I said to him. He stopped and turned to me, beaming. I smiled back shyly, and then we carried on to the car. My brain was whirring with all of the information I had received, and I couldn’t rid myself of the chills one feels when one realises that their life will never be the same again.