Chapter 16

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This is dedicated to AsTheWindBlows (Sky) because she won the best first chapter category of my One Direction's Undiscovered Gems Watty Awards! Go check out her fanfic called Restart My Heart :)

Enjoy the chapter and leave me your thoughts in a comment! And vote! And fan! xxx Shelby

Chapter 16

“What?” Niall and I asked at the same time.

“Kora, your father lives in London,” Paul explained. “When your mum took you, I hired a private investigator to track him down and it turns out he lives in the same complex that you and Danielle do.”

My jaw dropped. “Seriously?”

He nodded. “I just got off the phone with him. He says he sent you letters every year when he left, but your mum always sent them back and told him to never come back. He tried visiting you on your birthday every year until you were six, but again your mum wouldn’t let him anywhere near you. He wanted to take you with him, but he didn’t have the money when he first left and then Helen wouldn’t let him see you. He didn’t want to go to court because he didn’t want you to feel like you had to side with one person and he knew your mom would get custody.”

I blinked, processing this new information. My dad wanted me? He actually cared? Mom had always told me he was nothing but a drunk who had gotten her pregnant and then left her. She made it seem like he never cared about me, but that wasn’t true. He wanted me.

“Why didn’t he ever say anything if we lived in the same complex?” I wondered, breaking the silence that had settled over us.

“He didn’t know you did. Keep in mind he hasn’t seen you since you were a kid and you died your hair. He’s more than happy to have you come live with him in London. He understand it’ll be a little awkward for awhile, but he want you to be happy. He want you to live your dream and get away from her mother.”

Tears of joy sprang to my eyes.

Niall looked down at me, his eyes twinkling. “You can come back.”

“I’m coming back!”

*****

I took a deep breath as we stepped off the boys’ private jet at the airport in London. Waiting for me inside would be my father, a man I never knew but who was willing to let me live with him. Niall locked his fingers with mine, giving my hand a reassuring squeeze.

We walked in behind Andy and Paul, a crowd of fans overwhelming us. Niall pulled me closer, waving to some girls that shouted his name. I smiled to the girls, but the whole time I was searching for my dad. I spotted him moments later. He had a hot pink sign that said ‘Kora Elizabeth Benson’s dad’. So original, right?

I towed Niall over to the man, glad security and the other boys were distracting the fans for us. “Dad?”

He smiled at me, make the edges of his light green eyes crinkle. I had his smile I realized right away. His hair was the chocolate brown that mine used to be and had a slight wave to it. “Kora…” He grabbed me in a hug. “I can’t believe you’re here. You look so grown up.”

I blinked back tears, chuckling. “That happens when you haven’t seen someone since they were six.”

He held me at arms length, lifting a piece of my hair. “What’d you do to your hair?”

“It was a little bit of a rebellious streak that I ended up loving…”

He shook his head, smiling again. “I can’t say I’m surprised really.” He looked over my shoulder at Niall. “Who’s this?”

Someone obviously doesn’t watch the news. “Dad,” that felt weird saying, “this is my boyfriend Niall.”

Nialler stepped forward and extended his hand. “Nice to meet you, sir.”

Dad nodded. “Please, call me Jake.”

It just hit me that my father had a British accent. “Whoa, I just noticed your accent. This will sound stupid, but you’re British?”

He laughed. “Yes, I am. Your mother never told you that?”

“No,” I shook my head. “She said you were a no good drunk.”

“Well, I can assure you that is definitely not me.”

Paul came over to where we stood. “Guys, we need to leave. The fans are getting a bit out off hand.”

Niall and I nodded, following Paul and the rest of the crew outside to where the bus was parked. My dad chose to drive his own car while the rest of us climbed into the tour buses and set out to our various locations.

My phone buzzed in my pocket. I pulled it out, grinning when I saw who the text was from. It was Jay, the little girl we had taken to the concert.

Jay: I just wanted to thank you again for the concert!! It was the best night of my life! Especially when you handed out the glow sticks. I miss you guys! <3

Kora: I’m glad you had fun! Miss you, too!

Niall looked over my shoulder when I locked my phone. “Everything okay?”

I nodded. “It was just the little girl from the concert. She misses us.”

“Aw, that’s sweet. Hey, do you want to come by my flat real quick before we go to yours? I have something I want to show you.”

“Sure!”

*****

I laughed as I tripped over a step Niall had forgotten to tell me about on our way up to his flat. His hands were over my eyes so I couldn’t see anything.

“Sorry!” Niall apologized.

I shook my head laughing again. “Are we there yet?”

“Yup.” I heard him stick his key into the lock then the door swing open. “Okay, open your eyes.”

His hands dropped from my face and my eyes opened. I was confused for a minute, but then I saw what he was talking about. Spread out on the kitchen table was an assortment of food, varying from fried chicken to milkshakes.

“I asked Harry’s mom to do this. She made all your favorites; fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, and corn. Then she got us milkshakes from Milkshake City.”

I smiled at the meal before turning and hugging Niall. “This is so sweet. Thank you. I’ll have to get Harry to thank Anne for me.”

“I figured you hadn’t had a good meal in awhile, so I thought this would be a nice welcome home gift.”

“It’s perfect.” I stood on my toes and kissed his cheek. “I love you.”

He grinned, showing off his braces. “I love you, too. I’m so glad your back.”

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