Chapter 20

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Mani's P.O.V.

Opening that door a week ago and seeing Camila was beyond just a shock. It made me angry, curious and skeptical. I'm angry at her leaving Aiden, curious as to why she came to my house and skeptical of her real intentions. Aiden has been in the media but I don't know if she knows that. I don't want her trying to use him for something. You know, never really know someones motives.

Aiden hasn't really said anything about it and he hasn't been acting any differently. I don't want to ask him about it just yet though. Lauren's reaction to Camila was what I expected. She's fiercely protective of all of us and though I am too, I don't lose my temper as quickly. All Camila told me was that she wanted to talk to Aiden. She apologized for leaving him and said she wanted to make things right. That was an incredibly brave thing to do on her part. I'm just afraid she'll hurt him but there's nothing I can do.

I do want my questions answered though. Why leave then wait so long to come back? Why did she do the things she did? I want answers and I'm going to get them so that's why I asked her out for a cup of coffee. I feel bad for seeing her without Lauren or Aiden knowing but I don't think Aiden will be upset. Lauren on the other hand...I still can't always pinpoint her reaction to things. I sit at a booth in the back of the restaurant, waiting. I told her to meet me here in 10 minutes and I still don't see her. I sip my coffee then check a few emails and text Lauren. I look up when I hear someone clear their throat and I see Camila standing by the table. She looks like...she's had a hard life. You can see how time and a certain lifestyle has worn on her, making her look older than me when she's actually younger. She gives me a small smile then sits down while placing her cup of coffee on the table.

"Hi Normani. Thanks for inviting me out." I nod my head and fold my hands over the table.

"I only asked you here to get answers." I say and she nods.

"I'm sure. I'm surprised Lauren isn't here glaring and threatening me again."

"I told you it would only be us. This will have to be quick because I want to get home. First off, why did you come all the way to New York and leave your son at Lauren's doorstep?" She sighs and runs her hand through her brown hair.

"It's really hard raising a kid, especially on your own."

"But you choose that. If you would have told Lauren in the beginning you wouldn't have had to be alone." I say.

"I didn't know Lauren, I still don't know her. We had a one time fling and I got pregnant. For all I know, she may have not cared and denied him."

"But you didn't really give her a chance. You didn't give her a chance to be in her kid's life."

"I did." She says calmly.

"After you abandoned your son!" I say frustrated and she rolls her eyes.

"You don't know what I was going through. I had NO ONE and I had to support myself and a kid. I couldn't do it."

"And after leaving without a trace, you can be a parent 12 years later? He'll be an adult soon."

"It took me a while to get back on my feet. I wanted to be better for him and myself before I came back."

"Well he still hasn't decided what he wants to do but if he does want to let you in his life and you hurt him -"

"There will be hell to pay." She says cutting me off and I glare at her.

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