Author: peacelovejay PM
Chelsea Donnell's greatest wish is to meet the father she's never known. She is the result of a one-night stand, causing major tension with her mom. When her mom dies, she finally gets her wish. But as she makes friends and enemies attending her dad's alma mater, an all boys' military school, things soon get more dangerous than she could ever have imagined.Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Friendship - Chapters: 10 - Words: 33,331 - Reviews: 5 - Favs: 7 - Follows: 20 - Updated: 09-02-12 - Published: 07-17-12 - id: 3042607
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
I stepped off the plane and couldn't believe my eyes.
It was a week later, and my living arrangements had been worked out. As expected, I would be staying with my dad. Also as expected, he was too busy to properly care for a kid, so he would be sending me to his old boarding school. I was actually really excited, because it had always been a secret dream of mine to go to European boarding school. All the movies make it seem so romantic, and now that I had a real chance to go, I couldn't wait. He told me it was called "Meriwether Academy," which totally fit with my idealized view of a traditional boarding school. He said I should search it online, and seemed a bit nervous that I wouldn't like it (before running off with a call from work). I realized that he thought I didn't know it was a military school (although it was pretty obvious from how he talked about meeting all of his current military colleagues there...), and would be upset by that fact. But I caught on that it was a military school, and decided not to do a search, so I could be surprised by what I imagined to be beautiful ivy-covered stone and sprawling fields. It would be starting in two weeks, which would give me a little time to get to know my dad better and settle in to his... no, our house.
He had told me all about my school plans, and yet had failed to tell me that the aforementioned "house" was actually a freaking mansion! It was three stories high and a beautiful old style that reminded me of Versailles. Seriously, it was a palace. Not to mention the fact that I had just disembarked from his private jet onto his private landing strip. I had known he was well off, but I had no clue that he was filthy rich!
I jumped when I felt a hand on my shoulder.
"Sorry about that!" His deep voice rang out in the open fields. He breathed in deeply. "Ahh, it's good to be home."
"Yeah, well you could have told me that 'home' was a palace!" After a week of being together 24/7, we were already a lot closer, and I could give him some sass. I quickly learned, though, that he wasn't a general for nothing, and wouldn't take any disrespect. Luckily, I respected him greatly, so there was no problem there.
"Sorry for the surprise. I didn't think you would be upset." He chuckled.
I sighed. "I'm not, I just… I wasn't expecting this."
We stood there quietly, taking it in, for another couple minutes. I was looking at everything in awe, and he was just feeling glad to be back. It was incredible- there was a small stable, a riding pasture, a large vegetable garden, acres of open fields, and lush forest. It was a paradise!
"Yes, it is." Whoops, again with the saying things out loud by accident. "You should see it when it's sunny out!"
"I like the mist. It makes it beautiful and mysterious. It's so… England-y."
He laughed full out this time. "Well, the novelty will wear off soon."
"I hope not." I replied in wonder.
"Well, enjoy whatever time you can actually appreciating the mist. Just don't tell the locals. They'll think you're crazy. Well, crazier than you are." I'd also learned over the past week that I got my sarcasm and humor from him. Even though he seemed stern, he could open up and be funny at times, and we got along really well most of the time.
I realized that he was still waiting for a response, so I just rolled my eyes jokingly.
"Well, do you want to see the inside?" He asked.
I was so amazed I hadn't even been thinking about it, but I jumped at the chance. "Of course!" I squealed.
"Do you want to go in through the back, which is the normal way, or through the front, for the whole grand effect?"
"Front, obviously!" I replied with a little hop of excitement. Clearly, he knew that I would want the whole dramatic experience, or else he wouldn't have offered, so he just grinned back at me before leading me on a path around to the front. I had only seen the front from the plane, but from the ground it was even more spectacular. The path ended in a huge circle with beautiful flowers and shrubbery in the middle. Another path led off from the opposite side of the circle, and I pointed to it questioningly.
"That one leads to the garage." He explained. "And that one" he pointed to one directly across from the house. "Leads to the road."
"Awesome." It was so strange to be in the presence of such wealth and beauty, let alone think that in a way, all of this was mine!
After that interruption, we continued up to the huge front doors. They were made of blurry glass, so I could only vaguely see the inside. He kept me waiting in anticipation for a few seconds, then took pity on me and unlocked them with a giant clicking noise. They swung open to reveal a huge foyer with a high ceiling and a beautiful chandelier. The combination of natural and artificial light was breathtaking. The whole room was lit up and almost looked like it was glowing. I was in awe, and I entered cautiously. Looking back, I saw Dad smiling encouragingly, so I ventured further in. The walls were a creamy off-white color, with a few tasteful landscapes. I had no doubt that an interior designer was behind the decorating. I stopped in the middle of the two staircases that curved up along both walls of the round room, and tilted my head up to the ceiling, fanning my arms out and spinning around in glee.
At the sound of my dad laughing, I stopped and faced him with my arms crossed. "What?" I asked, pouting.
He calmed himself down. "Oh, nothing. I'm terribly sorry." His face and tone were completely serious, but his eyes danced with mirth, giving him away. I matched his serious demeanor for a second, then we both broke down into hysterics. Once we were done, I skipped back over to him, snuggling against his solid chest. I looked up at him, feeling like a little girl, and realizing that this was what I had been missing. This sense of security, of there always being someone to have your back. I smiled up at him.
"I'm really glad I met you, dad." I said sincerely.
"I'm really glad I met you, too, sweetheart." He hugged me tighter to him, and I got the impression that maybe he had wanted a child, before he got too busy for one. Maybe he'd always felt that empty space inside too! Well, that was a conversation for another time. Right now, I wanted to explore the house! (Well, the palace. Whatever.)
After another second, we released each other from the hug before it got too awkward, and I looked around the room one more time.
"So," I asked him. "Where to first?"
He proceeded to show me around, pointing out a gleaming state of the art kitchen, sitting room complete with a grand piano, and beautiful marble ballroom, among others. One room that stood out was a gorgeous, ornate dining hall. The walls were a deep burgundy with gold trim and there were several portraits on the wall, all of men wearing fancy army uniforms.
"Were all the men in your family generals?" I asked.
"Not all." He answered. "But it is a sort of family tradition." I nodded in understanding, and wondered if he expected me to go into the army. Strangely, it had always been something that interested me, although you wouldn't expect it based on my playful, girly exterior.
Next, we moved on out to a large patio. There was a great view of the property, and I could see the airstrip where we had landed as well as a gorgeous garden complete with fountains and sculpted hedges. After looking around for a minute, we returned back inside, and continuing the tour upstairs, viewing various guest rooms, as well as my dad's bedroom, which was decorated in slate grey and forest green, definitely fitting with his personality.
Soon, we approached the last door we hadn't entered.
"And this is your room," my dad said with a smile, affirming my suspicions. I opened it to find a spacious room with large windows that let in a beautiful soft light, surrounding everything with a sort of pale glow.
Unfortunately, though, I would only live here over the summer and possibly Christmas and Easter breaks, so I would soon have to pack my school trunks. My dad said that I should bring about half normal clothes and half uniforms to my school, so I would get the uniform components when I went shopping the next weekend.
After unpacking clothes and knick-knacks for a couple hours, I got bored and went into my dad's study. I knocked quietly, hoping I wasn't disturbing him.
"Come in!" his deep voice resonated in the large room.
"Hey, dad." I greeted.
"Hello, Chelsea." He replied. "Have you been enjoying yourself getting to know the house?"
"Very much." I said.
"That's good." He responded distractedly.
"Am I interrupting something?" I asked.
"No, no. I was just doing some work."
"I don't want to pull you away from anything. I just wanted to check up with you. I'll go unpack some more now."
"It's quite alright if you want to talk more…" He tried to convince me, but I saw that he was busy. After all, I knew he was an important general, and I wouldn't want to put England at danger or anything!
"It's fine." I assured him. "I'll see you at dinner… What time is dinner, by the way?"
"Usually around 6:30. Is that good for you?"
"Yup." I replied cheerfully. "See you then."
"Alright, dear. Have fun unpacking."
"Thanks!" I said, then headed back to my room to finish. I unpacked my alarm clock and popped in my favorite CD to listen to while I was working.
I lost track of time, and was almost finished when I heard laughing behind me. I turned around to see my dad laughing at my somewhat spastic dance moves. I stuck my tongue out at him immaturely. Surprisingly, he returned the gesture. I loved the goofy side of him that rarely came out. We were really similar, and I could see where I got some of my personality traits. I know everyone says personality is environmental, but seeing my dad definitely gave me faith in the genetics theory.
We walked down to dinner together, and I immensely enjoyed the chef's cooking. There were definite upsides to having an extremely wealthy dad! I finally finished up my unpacking and after confirming my uniform-shopping trip with my dad and saying goodnight, I quickly fell asleep in my comfortable new bed, a couple of hours earlier than usual, exhausted from the day's excitement and hard work. I knew I would have to face the consequences of repressing my emotions about my mom, but for now I was happy to take advantage of the temporary freedom and appreciate my new environment without thinking about how I got there.