She is crying. Softly.
Curled up in a ball under the coverlet, she looks tiny, her golden hair glinting against the dark sheets. Her thin arms are wrapped around a small pillow … a replacement for our daughter. She is crushing it against her chest, as if afraid that if she lets go, she will no longer be able to contain her pain.
As I stand in the doorway looking at her, I feel an intense pang of regret. Kelly told me this would be for the best, and I … hope so. I know it is. I know Adalind would never be safe. I would never be safe. Diana would never be safe. And yet, for a moment, for a few precious seconds before Nick buzzed to be let up, I had a family. For that short period of time, with her mother ravaging my refrigerator and her resting gently in my arms, Diana had what I never had, and what she never will have again: both parents.
I decided a long time ago, as Mother and I fled Europe to risk being killed by the Royals, that I would never do this, that I would never give a child a life of running… of being a bastard… of being hunted. I was hunted, until I was old enough to fight back, until I had the strength to retaliate. But … Adalind changed that. She caught me weak and unprepared, and now I have a daughter. A daughter I will possibly never know until she is old enough to protect herself. A daughter that will now have the life that I once had, on the run … but with someone other than her mother. I had a Hexenbiest, and a powerful one. She will have a Grimm.
But Adalind does not know that. She cannot know that. Her tears are for a child she believes is in my cousin Viktor's arms… and I am the monster that did it. I gave her away. I gave her away, to take her back, but not for Adalind. Not even for myself. So that she can be hidden, safe, until she is old enough to choose her own side.
I would rather sleep on the couch. I have half a mind to, but she catches sight of my shadow on the wall and turns toward me, her eyes reddened with tears. One graceful hand reaches for me, pleadingly. I did not comfort her last time, when she lost her abilities. I was cold, uncaring, harsh … but this time, it is our shared sorrow. Our child that we will never hold again. I force myself to leave the doorway and approach, to slide under the coverlet. I wrap my arms around her and feel her tense against me, her hands loosening on the pillow. "You gave her away," she whispers, her voice thick from crying and breaking slightly. "You … gave her away."
She is still angry at me. She will always be angry at me. But she also wants me here… and the awful truth is, I want to be here. I held Diana for only a few minutes, but my arms feel empty. Adalind fills them. She distracts me from the many thoughts in my mind, from self-torment, from doubt. I trusted our daughter to a Grimm. Oh, how I have changed. How the tides have shifted. Not only did we meet, and converse, without trying to kill each other, but now we are locked in a shared secret, and my precious child's life is in her hands.
I say nothing, and after a moment Adalind lets go of the pillow. It migrates away from her as she turns to embrace me. I am hesitant at first, and then relax. Her cheek against my chest, listening to my heart beat, she whispers, "We'll get her back, won't we?"
Gloom dances over our heads, the weak light of street lamps playing across the ceiling of the suite. I stroke her back with my fingertips, breathing in the scent of her hair, and lie. "Yes," I answer. "Someday, we'll get her back."
How nice that would be, to have a daughter running about the house. But no, tragically, Diana is like me. She is a Royal, and a Bastard. She can never come home.