Hybrid Aria by Jessica Hall Chapter 35

Aria’s POV

Rolling to my side. “I need to find out if he really is my father,” I said as I was getting up. Reid rolled to face me.

“Fine but I am coming with you.” I looked over my shoulder at him and nodded. He jumped out of bed and started chucking a pair of jeans on. I grabbed my jeans and a bra before finding a white singlet. When I couldn’t find a jumper, I grabbed one of Reid’s flannelette shirts and rolled the sleeves to my elbows, I could smell the lingering scent of his aftershave on it. Once I was done, I grabbed my runners and followed after Reid, who was waiting by the door for me in his usual jeans and black shirt combo.

Reid grabbed his keys off the hallway table and walked out to his car, I hopped in the passenger seat. I thought it was strange Zane wasn’t coming. He usually follows Reid everywhere like a shadow.

“You scared them, Ari, I told him he could wait here.” I looked out the window feeling guilty. I was turning into a monster, I just hoped Marcus had some idea why.

“We’ll figure it out,” Reid told me, grabbing my hand before starting the car. We drove to the diner, when the car slowed, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go in anymore. I suddenly felt different about wanting to meet my father if that is indeed who he is. Reid pulled over to the curb and got out. I followed suit and got out before walking past him and into the diner. When I entered the bell sounded signalling our entrance. Zoe walked out to see who had stepped in, her face breaking into a smile upon seeing me. She walked over to me and wrapped her arms around me.

After a few seconds, I wrapped mine around her, she pulled me at arms lengths and looked behind me to Reid than the door.

“Lily didn’t come?” she asked. I could tell she really hoped I had Lily with me.

“No, we had an incident, Aria is best away from her now,” Reid answered. Zoe looked at me, but I just shook my head.

“She is fine, Zoe; I need to speak to my father.” Zoe glanced between Reid and I.

“Aria, your father is dead.” she answered.

“No, Alpha David said he saw him, recognised him. Where is Marcus?” Zoe glanced to the back where the kitchens are. I walked past her, just as Marcus stepped out. Only it wasn’t Marcus, it was my father. How I hadn’t recognised him after Zoe showed me a photo of him had me baffled, but it was definitely him in the flesh. Recognition shone in his eyes; he knew I knew.

“I can explain Ari,” he said, looking between Zoe and I. Zoe didn’t look shocked to see him. Therefore, she knew all along who he was and helped keep it a secret. Zoe moved past him.

“Shall I put the kettle on?” It wasn’t really a question, more a statement as she darted behind the counter. I moved off to a booth and sat down.

Reid sitting beside me, my father sat across from me. His hair was the same colour as mine, even the eye colour, I could make out through his contacts were flaming orange and yellow. His skin was tanned, he was wider than before he was bulkier and no longer looked like a gay hippy man, even his clothes were different, no tie-dyed shirt just a remarkably simple white shirt and black slacks.

“Does he look any different to you?” I asked Reid.

“No, is he supposed to?” he asked. My father glanced between the pair of us, before putting his hand out to Reid. “I’m Abel, nice to see you have calmed some, Reid” Reid shook his hand. Abel, that was my father’s name? I thought it would sound older than it is. I stared at the man, not sure what I felt besides confusion. “It’s called a glamour; you should be able to do it.” He spoke to me. His voice was different deeper, and he had a weird accent I couldn’t place. It sounded old and not of this world.

“I know what it is ,Reid explained it to me. What I don’t understand is why?”

“Why I hid myself from you?” he asked.

“Yes, and Mum. For years she spent grieving your loss, and you were here all along. How could you do that to her? Do that to me?” my voice breaking on the last word, I reigned in my emotions. I needed to hear this, hear the excuse he comes up with, not that that will change my anger right now from being lied to.

“I didn’t have a choice, Aria. When the Hunters found out about me, they hunted me for weeks, you and your mother hid away. I couldn’t let them find out about you. Your grandfather and I set up a trap hoping to let them think I was dead, only it backfired, and it actually got your grandfather killed. I pretended to be dead, waited, and when the coast was clear, I left the City. It was safer that way, they would know about your existence if I stayed, they would have found out and killed your mother and done only goddess knows what with you,”

“That doesn’t explain why you didn’t tell me when you came back.”

“I didn’t want to interrupt your life. I saw you had a sister and were raising her like your own. If I told you, it would have put both of you in danger, so Zoe and I decided to keep it from you, you’re the only one that couldn’t see me for me. I only glamoured you, that’s why I look the same to Reid.” I nodded in understanding, but that didn’t make me feel any better knowing he was here all along just watching in the shadows.

“After David saw me, I knew it was a matter of time before he blurted it out.”

“Yes, I went to see him after Hunters were spotted in the city. He has connections with them. David told them what I am,” Panic took over my father’s face as he looked around quickly as if we were being followed, Reid started shaking with anger, fur sprouting across his arms and his canines protruded. I forgot I hadn’t told him about David being the one to alert the Hunters to my existence.

I placed my hand over his that was digging into the table because his claws were extended.

My father sat back and relaxed when he saw no one watching. Reid slowly calmed down, my thumb rubbing circles on the back of his hand. Zoe came over and placed a coffee in front of us. The smell instantly hit my nose and made me gag, jumping up Reid slid out, letting me out. I ran into the bathroom and threw up. My throat was burning, and my eyes watered. I threw up blood everywhere. Zoe walked in to check on me.

“Are you alright, dear?” I stood up and flushed the toilet before walking out and rinsing my mouth at the sink. What the hell is wrong with me?

“Yep, I’m fine,” I said, trying to catch my breath. “This is why I needed to speak to my father.” Zoe nodded and handed me the tea towel from her apron to dry my face. Walking back out, I made my way to my seat, holding my breath, so the strong smell of coffee didn’t make me want to be sick again.

Reid was talking to my father, but I didn’t catch what they were talking about when I sat down.

“Your mother used to do that, she even craved blood. The hormones would make her crazed with bloodlust.” I looked at my father confused. My mother was a werewolf, werewolves don’t crave blood.

“Reid told me how you have been sick, starving hungry and sleeping, it is the only thing that makes sense” He tilted his head to the side listening for something. “Don’t you hear it?” he asked.

“Hear what?” I asked, looking between him and Reid, who was also listening intently.

Reid’s face lit up when he heard the mystery noise, while I just stared at them both, Reid’s face broke into a grin, and his eyes sparkled brightly.

“You’re pregnant.” He whispered.