Chapter One - Not My Daughter
"Remy, I'm pregnant."
Remy turned around, his eyes narrowed, and he could feel poison work it's way throughout his body. He met her eyes with his and found them cold, but familiar.
He sneered, "Whore."
He didn't need Belladonna to tell him; he knew. Intimacy had long since left the rocky relationship he had with his young wife. He knew it had been months since they had come together, bringing their two bodies into one. It seemed like some sort of twisted irony because for the most part, intimacy had been what used to keep them together.
She flicked a hand in the air, uncaring.
She was beautiful, really, and he knew it. As for their united front, they were a handsome couple. Well, she used to be beautiful, but now she was just cold.
His lip was in a slight curl of distaste, and he hadn't even noticed he balled his fists. It was probably better this way; one touch to the wall and the whole mansion would be engulfed in bright magenta. Some times he couldn't control himself; this might be one of them. He tried to force numbness, tried to sever the nerves to his brain, tried to avoid the almost physical pain, as his heart was wrenched - still beating - from his chest.
"Who's bebe is it?" He could feel the venom in his body sliding over his tongue and coating the words with his disdain.
He watched, angry, as she simply shrugged indifferently, "An Assassin's."
He didn't need an explanation. Furiously, he thought that that was probably what she wanted all along. It's like he could feel the knife in his back.
He watched her expression, he watched the cold indifference turn to calculating precision. Realization hit him like a ton of bricks. He stumbled back a few steps and caught himself on the edge of his bed. Their bed.
His veins turned to ice. "Y' did dis on purpose."
She laughed and her sweet, demented, falsetto echoed throughout their master suite. "Oui, mon cher. 'Course I did. Isn't it obvious? Figured y' would've figured it out by now."
He was grinding his teeth and all he could see was red. Despite the fact that anger was flowing through his body like liquid venom, he fought to keep himself composed. The deepest of betrayals may have felt like a punch in the face, but he tried to stay in control. He knew this was the end; he knew if he didn't get answers now, he never would.
He caught his breath as he could feel the metaphoric knife in his back twist in deeper. He clung to the only thread binding them together, "Wat bout de bebe – our bebe?"
Her eyes narrowed, "Wat d' y' tink?! I need an heir, Remy, an' maybe dis time, I get a bebe worthy 'f mon guild."
He didn't need to think about it, he knew. He'd seen her with their child; he knew she didn't have the love a mother should. It wasn't like she didn't try, in the first few months of her child's life she tried. She bought baby sized Ralph Lauren polo shirts and tired to talk to their child, but she acted as if the baby was a simple acquaintance. She paid no more attention than if she just past the child on the street.
Ever since the day in the hospital when the baby opened it's eyes for the first time, Belladonna no longer cared.
Bella watched as hurt ghosted past Remy's unwavering façade, and she couldn't help but roll her eyes. "Oh c'mon, Remy," she looked infuriated, "Dis is all yo' fault!"
"My fault!" Despite their tumultuous relationship, he could honestly say this was the first time he raised his voice at his wife, "Y' gonna have anoth'r homme's bebe!"
She was screaming as well, "Y' saw wat our child looks like! Wat our child is! I don' want a bebe like dat! I won' have a bebe like dat!"
Momentarily, he was caught off guard. He looked at her, confusion simmering over the heat of his anger, "Wat are y' talkin' bout Bella?"
She scoffed and looked at him as if he was plain stupid, "Like y' don' know. Dat bebe all ready has deux strikes." She placed a hand on her stomach, although there was no visible sign of pregnancy, "Dis child has none."
His eyes narrowed, "Deux strikes? Dis is b'cause we didn' have a son?"
"Y' couldn' give moi a boy, Remy," She seethed at him, as if he had any say it what gender their child was, "An' y' know dat no ot'er woman was meant t' run moi guild."
Belladonna was made Matriarch of her Guild by default, as there was no other heir. Originally her brother Julian was to grow into Patriarch but shortly after Remy and her said vows, her new husband had dueled her brother to the death.
After they consummated their marital status, Belladonna found herself reveling in the feelings of post coital bliss and informing her new husband, matter of factly, that if he hadn't killed Julian that night, that she was planning to do so in the future. He was not fit to lead her Guild. If he hadn't been killed, there would have been no other way a woman would stand to inherit a position of power. It was a sick loophole that Bella had had every intention of exploiting.
He shook his head, not understanding, "She b' a tief, den."
Despite what was previously thought, when Remy and Belladonna were united as husband and wife, their guilds were not. A United Guild was originally the plan, but whether Remy and Bella disliked the idea of joining their extended families, or the extended families disliked it themselves, remained unclear, but either way the groups were not meant to function as one. The marriage served its purpose though, which was to end the War between the rivals and cease blood from flowing through the Louisiana streets. Remy was happy the fighting had ended, but equally as disgusted that the move had tied him to a place he tried to leave so many times before.
"A tief?!" Bella's laugh was dark, "O' course, b'cause she could b' noting else."
Naturally, the Thieves and Assassins had similar opinions of each other; opinions that were not high at all.
He ignored the dig as the reminder of betrayal whipped around the front of his mind, taunting him, "Wat is strike deux, Belladonna? Wat else is wrong wit our bebe?"
Her dark humor was gone and her face twisted into a sickening display of unrequited malice, "De bebe has dose eyes. De bebe is goin' t' b' one o' y."
His eyes narrowed and the pain he thought couldn't increase found another impossible level; her deception had no bounds apparently. "Mon eyes?!" He knew he was yelling, but his anger was assimilating itself into the nausea rising up in his stomach, "Y' married moi, Belladonna! Y' knew what I am! Y' knew I was a mutant!"
She laughed again, both bitter and cruel, still standing near her closed bedroom door. Despite the fact her face was a montage on malevolence, her posture portrayed nothing but calm poise. "Don' f'get, dear husband, I may have married y', but I never intended t' give birth t' one of y'. Dat was yo' fault. Dis is all yo' fault."
He swallowed the bile he felt flooding his throat. He could refute her statement, he knew. He knew that new studies were showing that there was a chance the X-Gene might be passed through maternal DNA, he knew that if a child had two mutant parents that it had a 1 in 5 chance of being one themselves, that if a child had one mutant parent that it had a 1 in 10 chance of being one, and a child could be born a mutant to 'normal' parents with a 1 in 15 chance. He wasn't going to say it, but Bella could have been that 1 in 15, he thought. She could have 'ruined' this herself.
He was going to defend their daughter, he was going to tell her that she should love her own blood, but she continued before he had the chance.
"Y' know dey only adopt'd y' b'cause o' de Prophecy, but tink 'bout it Remy." She looked at him, again, as if stupidity was written all over his face, "Y' de only mutant in de Guild – in yo' Guild o' mon Guild. De Assassins don' want a mutant t' b' next in line." She smiled cruelly, and her well earned reputation shined though, "An' I don' blame dem none, eith'r."
He tried not to think about it, but he couldn't help himself. She was right; he was the only one. He tried to rationalize it; the Guilds were mostly a family business and it was very rare that any outsiders were allowed in, but he didn't know how the Assassins felt. Heck, his abilities made him the Thief he was and helped him to achieve his Master title. Chances are other 'people' with enhanced abilities would make great thieves, so why weren't they invited into the Guild?
As confusion broke its way though the infinite torment in his head and in his heart, he decided to ignore her words for now. Some things were more important; like the only thing tying him to this wretched place. "Wat 'bout our daughter, Belladonna?"
She waved a hand in the air, not caring, and her faced turned completely passive, "Not mon daughter, anymo'."
If Remy thought he was angry at the idea of Bella having an affair, that was nothing compared to how he felt now. He closed his eyes, for fear of what would happen if they landed on anything or anyone in the room. He saw red behind his lids and he could barely stay connected to any logic left in his system. He should kill her.
He could feel his palms bleeding from his nails as they dug deep into his balled fists.
Unlike cold hearts such as Belladonna, most parents had a connection with their child. As soon as the baby was born, an instantaneous bond would be formed and both lives would be changed forever. In that moment alone, a parent would realize that their life was no loner expendable because a new being was completely dependant on them. The parent had new responsibilities and had been hit with the first feeling of unconditional love.
Remy felt the connection he had with his daughter was deeper than any other parent/child relationship. He understood the symbolism of his blood running through the veins of the small child, but his blood ran deeper than that; his genes ran deeper than that. The moment his eyes met a pair of identical, albeit smaller, version of themselves, Remy's heart swelled and he knew his life would never be the same. All theories to dominant and recessive traits went out the door when he was face to face with his daughter, who was growing into a miniature version of himself: red on black eyes, angular features (although only slightly visible under soft baby fat), her small tuft of auburn hair. The physical similarities both astounded him and amazed him. He vowed he would do all in his power for the small child.
The minute he saw those small red and black eyes, he vowed to never let his child face the life he had. He would love her for her eyes, for her visible mutation. In fact, he loved her even more for them. She was both his sense of redemption and his means to happiness. She would never go through the trials he had to face; she would be protected. He would never let her be fear or hated for what she is. He loved her, and everyday he would raise her in a home that loved her as well.
Clearly his ideals he had for his daughter were not being met. His anger was ebbing into sickness as his stomach turned. He wanted better for her.
He'd have better for her.
Remy sighed in clear exasperation. He looked at Belladonna scowling face and glared back at her. "'M not gonna stay here an' watch y' raise anot'er homme's bebe." Whore. Liar. Adulterer.
She shrugged with all the ease of someone who couldn't care less, "I figured as much. I all ready had yo' stuff packed."
His eyes narrowed, "Jus like dat, Bella?"
Her scowl was back, "Oui, dear husband. If y' want de blood o' yo' Guild to run 'gain, den y' can try an' do someting 'bout it. Y' want t' start something, den mon Guild will finish it."
He tried to look cold, but honestly, he just felt sick, "So dat's de plan? I can leave if I want, but if I stay, y'll start de war 'gain?"
"Don' b' silly, cher. Y' mo' den welcome t' stay." She looked at him sarcastically, "Y' are mon husband aft'r all."
He didn't mean it as a threat, but it like one when he said it, "If I leave, 'm takin Liliette wit moi."
The non-caring look was back and Bella gestured towards a flat manila envelope that had been resting on her dresser. "I know how y' are wit y' laws, tief." Her distain tainted her words and Remy wondered if she'd always been so cold. "Yo' name is de only one on de papers. She not mon daughter anymo'." She paused before shrugging, "Good luck findin' a place t' go, cher. She's gonna need a doctor an' care, but no body wants t' treat mutants these days anyway."
His anger was back, rising like white heat from the center of the chest. He felt his past coming back against him. Maybe it was karma coming back to him for all the wrong things he'd done in the past. She was right, though. Mutant Human relations were at a surprising low and some doctors refused to see mutants, and his poor daughter happened to have a visible mutation. He had to go somewhere she'd be taken care of.
Belladonna turned towards the door to leave the room.
"Bella," he sighed in a mix between exasperation and frustration, "Y' know I did love y' once, mo' den all dis." He waved a hand in the air.
She turned to him, to smile cruelly, one last time. She had perfected the art of the killing blow, a long time ago. "An' I always loved de guild mo' den y."
The blow hit him in his stomach and he could almost feel the pain. Maybe the worst part about it was that he always knew that was true.
Hypocrite. Cheater. Whore. Adulterer.
As the door closed behind his sorry excuse for a life partner, Remy through his head back and screamed loudly trying to release at least some of his anguish.
Remy wanted to revel in the anger he could feel flowing in his veins. He wanted to release a charge and watch that familiar magenta engulf everything around him.
But he couldn't.
He couldn't wallow in his torment, hate, and frustration.
He couldn't because it just wasn't about him anymore.
Dragging his feet on the floor, with silent but angry steps, he needed to see the only person that could pull the hatred away from his heart. He needed to see the only person worth fighting for.
Stepping into the nursery, he felt his anger start to ebb as a familiar head was looking over the side of the crib. The twelve-month old onto was holding onto the crib railing and holding herself up. "Dere y' are bebe." He walked up to the crib and scooped his daughter into his arms.
The child gurgled happily and grabbed at Remy with chubby hands "Pa!"
"Oui, Lily, yo' papa is here." He lifted her up to his face and began kissing her cheeks. After holding her against his chest for a moment, he placed her back in her crib.
He looked into the closet and saw that not only had Belladonna had his things packed, but their majority of his daughter's things as well.
Of course, he thought bitterly, she would have no need for pink onesies anymore, because she was planning on having the son she wanted.
He sighed again and looked back at his daughter. Originally, he felt silly taking to a baby that clearly couldn't talk back, but Mercy reminded him over and over and over again how important it was to talk to her. His lovely sister in law had also brought him What To Expect the First Year and he had, surprisingly, read it.
He figured someone had to be prepared to parent their child, because Bella didn't seem to have a whole lot of interest in it. Remy worked most nights, all night, but he didn't mind. He spent most of his days (when not avoiding Guild paperwork) spending time with his daughter. He adored her. He was quite upset when he found out that Bella had the nanny doting on their child when he wasn't around. She was never much of the mother type, and with the eyes Lily had, she really didn't feel compelled to spend that much time with her. Whore.
"Now Liliette," He tried to look at his child seriously, as if she could understand him, "We gonna go away f' a little while. Jus y' a' moi. It'll b' okay, don' worry. Yo' papa is gonna take care 'f y'. Yo' gonna have better den he did, bebe. Papa's gonna make sure 'f it."
With a kiss on her head and a heavy heart, he promised he'd be back soon. He made his way through his room, his daughter's room, and through the Assassin mansion. He made sure everything he wanted/needed was packed tightly into the large SUV in the garage. At least Belladonna did most of that for him, but that hardly made up for what she did.
He felt anger build up in his chest again like a rising fire and he squeezed his eyes shut briefly, reminding himself for the umpteenth time that this wasn't about him anymore.
Where could he go to start over? Where could he go that his daughter would have the care she would need?
He was going to have to make a call.
He was going back to New York.
Okay, so I would love love love some feedback on this one. I'm not used to writing something that's not fluff/smut/humor so I'm trying something new with this dramatic buisness. I would love to know your thoughts or just likes/dislikes. I like trying to come up with story lines that haven't really been done so here's to trying another. Reviews?
Feel free to message me as well with thoughts/ideas/any questions that I didn't really clarify in this chapter.
Also, I personally have nothing against Belladonna, but she's just awful in this one, isn't she?
Reviews = Love