12th July 2010
I didn't know what to do after Lewis left that day. He had dropped the massive bomb on me and I had no idea what to do with the mass of information that was swimming around my head. When I next saw him after his visit to my house he apologised extensively for not telling me the truth when he first met me and for dumping everything on me and not sticking around to deal with the aftershock. He was so pathetic in his apology I had to forgive him.
And I'm glad I did.
23rd June 2009
I kept the truth about my mother bottled up for two days. I hardly spent any time in the house, deliberately avoiding my father and brother so I didn't have to tell them what Lewis had told me. I sat on the beach and at the top of the cliff. Why couldn't Lewis be what he told me he was? Why couldn't my life be simple?
But through all the confusion there was one question flying around my head, screaming to be answered. Who do I talk to?
The obvious answer was Rupert. I should tell him about our mother. If he wanted to get in contact with her then that was his decision. But how would he feel that our mother sent Lewis to look for me and not him? Even I didn't know why she would want to look for me and not her son so I couldn't even begin to explain to Rupert what was really going on. Even I didn't know what was going on inside Isabelle's head.
The house was stifling. Rupert knew something was wrong and I knew that sooner or later he would ask me what was wrong. I didn't know if I could lie to him.
I was left with only one choice.
When Rupert was out I went to find my father. I had to hear the other side of the story.
'Come in,' my father called when I knocked on the door to his room. I opened the door and cautiously walked in. He was sitting at the desk by the window, staring out at the sea that stretched out for what seemed like an eternity towards the horizon. 'Hello Evelyn,' he said, surprised to see me. 'What's wrong?'
'Who said that anything was wrong?'
'You have that look on your face, the one that tells me something isn't right. Is there something I should know about?'
'Actually I need to talk to you Dad,' I said, my stomach clenching as I perched on the end of the bed. 'It's really important.'
'What is it?' He asked, turning his chair away from the window to face me. He looked concerned, his forehead creasing with worry lines.
'I met this guy,' I started. 'His name is Lewis and he told me that he was visiting relatives in the area. We got close and I began to really like him?'
'Has this boy hurt you?' My father said, showing a protective side I rarely saw from him.
'No, at least not in the way you're thinking. He came to see me a few days ago and he told me something. Something I found hard to believe.'
'You're scaring me Evelyn. What did this boy tell you?'
'He told me he was a private investigator from London and he'd been sent here to find me.' I looked up to see my father's face stiffening, almost like he knew what I was about to say. 'He said my mother sent him. She wants to see me.'
'What else did he tell you?' My father said sharply. 'What else did he say Evelyn?'
'He told me why we left Isabelle. That we disappeared into the night because you thought she wasn't good enough to be our mother.'
'She was ill,' my father snapped. 'She needed to sort herself out and she couldn't do that with two small children depending on her. I had to take you away.'
'But what about when she got better?' I pressed. 'What about then?'
'I never stopped her from trying to find us. She could have come and joined us here if that was what she wanted.'
'So you didn't tell her where we were going.' It was my father's turn to look away. 'Did you even tell her that you were taking us away?' Somewhere in the mix of emotions coursing through my veins I could feel anger at my father. What right did he have to trick my mother like that?
'She could have found us if she wanted,' he repeated.
'That's not an excuse,' I protested. 'I can't say that I'm against you because Lewis told me that Isabelle was ill. She had been suffering from post-natal depression since I was born. And after she was treated I don't know why she waited this long to find us. But you shouldn't have put her in that position.'
'I stand by what I did,' my father said, standing up, tall and defiant. 'You cannot judge me because of the decision I made. It was the right decision.'
'Hiding me and Rupert from our mother was the right decision?'
'Don't you dare talk to me like that Evelyn,' he ordered. 'I am your father and you will show me some respect.'
'How can you expect me to respect you when you hide something like this from me and my brother?'
'Does Rupert know about this?' My father asked in a quieter tone.
'Not yet. But I can't hide this from him forever. You need to tell him the truth. I don't want him to hear it the way I did; from a total stranger. He deserves to hear it from you.'
'Rupert does not need to know about this. It's upsetting enough that you found out but I can't take that back.'
'He already knows something is wrong,' I said indignantly. 'And if you're not going to tell him then I will.'