Monsters

"My father?" Maggie asked slowly. "But that wasn't Dad, Dad was late working at a contract. That's why I had to walk home. It couldn't have been Dad, he looked nothing like Dad. He was tall and wearing a trench coat. But that couldn't have been real! Things like that don't happen, they don't exist!" She was begin to panic and hyperventilate. It was a problem she had had since childhood, if something upset or worried her she would have a panic attack. Charity hugged her and began to calm her down. When she was calm Charity said, "Yes, Dad was working late. But…," She paused a moment before continuing, "We are not your biological parents. Don't you remember the Mendoza's?" At the mention of the name she did remember, she also remembered the monsters that came and took her. "What happened to me?" She whispered. And Charity told her. How her parents were Harry Dresden, professional wizard, and Susan Rodriguez, reporter turned Half-vampire guerilla fighter. How she was taken in by the Mendoza's to be safe. How the Red Court of Vampires had found out about her and killed her family and taken her. How her parents had launched an assault upon the heart of the Red King's power. How her father had to sacrifice her mother to save not just her, but also the entire world from vampires. How her father had to make deals with faeries to save her. How he had given her to them to be safe. How he had arranged his own death to escape the Fae deal. How he had been brought back. How he had to become the Winter Knight. How he had cut all contact with friends and allies to protect them from Mab, his Queen. How no one had seen or spoken to him in nearly a decade. "Where is he?" I ask. She looks at me sadly and says, "Nobody knows. He moves around a lot. Nobody can seem to catch him or keep up with him. He is living in self-imposed exile to protect everyone both from Mab and from himself." Maggie felt confused and asked, "Why from himself?" Charity sighed and said, "Being the Winter Knight isn't just a job. It eats away at your soul and your mind until you are forever the property of your Queen. He knew that eventually he would turn to the bad and had to cut contact before that happened, to soften the blow." Maggie frowned and said, "Why would he make the deal? Why did he put himself through that?" Charity spoke two small words that made her realize the depth of her biological father's love, "For you."