“Wow, I can’t even imagine a day without my parents,” Luke said.
“Yeah it gets pretty rough, but Grandpa and Nana have always been there to comfort me, so I’m okay.”
Maddy had just told Luke what had happened to her parents when she was a kid.
“Well, from what my parents told me, your parents were really great people.”
Luke was trying to console Maddy, but all she felt was sadness. She had spent her life pushing them to the back of her mind, but now she couldn’t help but think about the fact that whatever happened to them happened so that they could save her life.
“I don’t wanna talk about it anymore,” Maddy said as she packed her backpack. “We’re gonna be late for our next class, let’s go.”
Luke downed the rest of his milkshake, and they headed back to school.
The car ride was silent. Neither Luke nor Maddy said a word until they pulled back into the school parking lot.
“Thanks for lunch,” Maddy said.
Maddy could barely concentrate the rest of the day. She didn’t care about Dr. Prior’s lecture, nor did she care about Dillon’s drama. She just couldn’t stop thinking about her parents.
Luke had awakened emotions in her that she had never felt before. Add her father’s journals into the mix; Maddy was almost an emotional wreck. She pushed through, though because she didn’t like for people to see her upset. She was so used to being the peppy, upbeat friend. She felt as though people depended on her to be that person, and she didn’t want to let anyone down. These last few months had not gone how she’d expected, but she was determined to make it out on top. She still had her brains, she had Luke by her side and she also was learning everything that she could about being a Nephilim.
After she found out Luke was also a Nephilim, they began to hang out a lot more. She finally felt like she had someone that she could trust. She had found the person that she could talk to and they’d understand exactly what she was going through.
She’d been avoiding her grandparents because she was upset at the fact that they didn’t tell her that Grandpa was the angel that Leslie’s grandfather had almost captured.
“I mean, how could they keep such valuable information from me,” she asked Luke. “Nana put up a fight to keep me in the dark, but it was her husband she should have been protecting.”
“Well, that was a long time ago and your nana didn’t know much about your grandpa being an angel when she first met him.”
“Yeah, but still, they should’ve told me something! My whole life has been filled with secrets, and the only reason I know what I know now is because you slipped up and told me. I also wouldn’t know much had it not been for my uncle Nolan giving me my father’s journals.”
“I’m sure they had good reason,” Luke said trying to reassure her.
Maddy was full of angst and didn’t understand that her grandparents were only trying to protect her from being harmed. She was so confident in her power, but still so reckless. The Hierarchy could find her at any moment, and Maddy wouldn’t have known what to do.
The two of them were sitting in Luke’s car during lunch period when Maddy’s phone began to ring.
“Madd, where are you?”
It was Dillon.
“I’m in the car with Luke. We’re talking about stuff.”
“Ohhh,” Dillon said. “You and bae spending QT together?”
“Hush, it’s not that deep” Maddy said laughing.
“I didn’t want anything chile, go ahead and do your thing.”
Maddy hung up the phone.
“You’re gonna have to talk to your grandparents eventually,” Luke said. “You can’t just keep short wording them like you’ve been doing these past two weeks.”
Maddy put her earphones in and ignored everything Luke was saying.
Once she got home, like every other day, she went straight into her room.
As soon as she got into her room, she jumped in bed and laid under her covers. Her plan was to sulk as she had been doing for the past two weeks, but today her plans would be interrupted.
“Madeline, I need to talk to you,” said a voice from outside her bedroom door. “I just want to know if everything is okay with you.”
Maddy got up from her bed and opened the door to find Nana and Grandpa both waiting outside.
“What’s wrong, Snickerdoodle,” Grandpa asked. “You haven’t said a word to us in weeks. All we get is two to three words tops.”
“Are you sure you want to have this conversation with me right now,” Maddy said with an attitude.
“Yes,” Nana and Grandpa both said in unison.
Maddy changed into more comfortable clothes, and then she headed down into the kitchen with her grandparents. She wasted no time getting the conversation started.
“Okay, so why did you guys not tell me that Grandpa was the angel that Leslie’s grandfather almost captured,” she asked.
“Darling, we were felt like not telling you was protecting you. We just didn’t want you to get hurt,” Nana said.
“See, I knew you would say that,” Maddy screamed. “You can’t omit information from me. The only way to keep me safe is for me to know everything about what I’m experiencing right now.”
“You’re right sweetheart,” Grandpa said.
Nana began to cry and so did Maddy.
“Come and give me a hug,” Grandpa said as he reached his arms out.
Maddy collapsed into Grandpa’s arms and let all of the emotions she had been bottling up out. After a few minutes, she felt better, and everyone was in their right minds to have a proper conversation.
Maddy went on to tell Nana about the journals that Uncle Nolan had given her. She told her about all of the details that her father had kept the entire time they’d been on the run. She then told her about Luke and his connection to their family. Grandpa also went into more detail about what had happened the night that he’d almost gotten caught by Leslie’s grandfather.
He’d been friends with Leslie’s grandfather when he first moved into town, but upon realizing what he was, he decided to end the friendship. Leslie’s grandfather didn’t take kindly to Grandpa ending the friendship, so he began to stalk him out of suspicion.
Nana had left out of parts of the story from the night that she found out that Grandpa was an angel.
“Maddy, I think there’s something that you should know,” Nana said.
She turned around and made sure that what she was about to do was okay with Grandpa. He gave her a stern head nod.
“The same night that I found out about your Grandpa, was the same night that Leslie’s grandfather had almost captured him. After stalking him, he found his cottage, and he saw the entire encounter that your Grandpa and I had just had. After I’d confronted your Grandpa about what I’d just seen, Leslie’s grandfather thought that I was in danger, so he shot your Grandpa with a substance called vernollium. Vernollium is the only known substance that can weaken an angel. Where he’d gotten it, no one knows to this day, but he had it that night. I fought him off, and your Grandpa was strong enough to fight off the vernollium.”
“Wow,” Maddy said. “So that family really is as twisted as Luke told me they were.
Nana let out a soft laugh.
“Also, since we’re letting things out tonight,” Nana said. “There’s also something else I think you should know.
“Yeah, what is it,” Maddy asked.
Nana let out a deep sigh.
“We have photos of your parents,” Nana said.
“Oh, great! Can I see them,” Maddy asked? “I don’t have many as it is.”
“Here’s the twist,” Grandpa said, chiming in. “The photos are fairly recent, which means only one thing.”
“Wait…” Maddy stood up from the barstool she was sitting in. “Are you telling me that — ”
“Yes, Maddy. Your parents may still be alive,” Grandpa said.
She didn’t know whether she wanted to cry or jump for joy, so she did both.
“How do you know? Where did you get the photos?”
“That package I received that day, that’s what inside of the box,” Grandpa said. “Someone has been tracking your parents down, and we’re not sure who it is.”
“So can we go and look for them? What are we gonna do next,” Maddy asked.
“Well sweetie, we want to find them just as much as you do, but it would kind of be putting them at great risk being that we don’t know who has been taking the photos.”
“But, Nana this is major,” Maddy said. “I’ve always had a feeling that they were trying to send me a message in my dreams, but I could never make it out. This entire time they’ve been trying to let me know that they’re okay.”
“Go get those journals so that we can read them together,” Nana said.
“You’re not mad at Uncle Nolan for giving them to me,” Maddy asked.
“No, I knew that was going to give them to you. I’m the one that told him to save them for your 18th birthday,” Nana said. “I knew something was going on with you, and I figured it might have been the journals. I wasn’t sure.”
“We can also talk about whatever else you want to know,” Grandpa added.
“I think I’ve heard enough for tonight,” Maddy said.
She laughed and went to get the journals from her bedroom, but when she got into her bedroom the journals weren’t where she’d left them. She began to panic. She unzipped her backpack and dumped everything out of it, but they weren’t there either.
She looked and saw her window had been left open.
“NANA,” Maddy yelled. “They’re gone! My dad’s journals are gone!”