That just killed me inside. I knew that Clara knew who he was but yet he had no clue who she was. I was sad but angrier that he was here. Not only did he come here but he came here and didn`t even recognize his own daughter. I felt angry tears brimming up in my eyes. They were going to overflow and I knew that I had to get out of here.
"Daddy!" Clara yelled as she threw her arms around his neck and then she kissed him on the cheeks.
My heart dropped. I had been waiting for her to say that but I didn`t want her to say it, not in front of everyone.
"Oh honey, that's not your father," Mr. Locket said taking Clara away from Jacob.
"...He is Daddy..." Clara said sadly.
Mr. and Mrs. Locket chuckled. "No this is grandpa`s son."
"No, it`s Daddy," Clara whined stubbornly.
I looked at Jacob who was looking at Clara as if she was an amazing miracle. He made eye contact with me for a moment. He looked guilty. He should be, he had no clue who his daughter was.
"Clara, don`t be a bad girl, come here," I said motion her over.
Mr. Locket set her down. She wadded over to me.
"Mommy, tell them its daddy."
"It's not Daddy," I said sternly. I turned to face the group. "I`m sorry, she`s just confused."
I looked up to see my Mom looking at me worriedly.
"I`m gonna take her outside for a bit," I said starting to walk Clara to the kitchen.
"She must have you mistaken for someone else," Mrs. Locket laughed like Clara was the cutest thing.
"Actually...she didn`t," Jacob spoke up, "Mom, Dad this is my daughter."
I looked up to see him looking at me straight in the eyes.
I finished packing up the last of the cake up.
"Hey Scarlette, let`s talk," Jacob said from behind me.
My Dad came into the room.
"Scarlette, is everything alright here?" he asked.
I nodded my head yes.
"If you need me I`m in the other room," he said looking at Jacob before leaving.
I continued to clean up and ignore Jacob.
"Scar, come on, just talk to me," Jacob pleaded.
"...So you can run again?" I said sternly not looking at him.
"I`m sorry I ran again..."
"Don`t, I told you never to apologize, you never mean it anyways."
"...Scar. But I am. I`m sorry. Now I `m here, and I`m not running."
I stopped and chuckled, but I did it more to cover my hurt.
"And what Jake? Am I supposed to just open up and let you in again?"
"No...not right now...but I hope I will be able to convince you to...,"
"Go home Jake, go home to you and your life, your money, your nice houses, and oh your three month girlfriends."
"You`re the first girl that I ever spent a second day with..." Jake said.
"And what is that supposed to mean Jake? What all of sudden I`m the one, I should forgive you because I had the special honor of being your first one week sex partner? You were my first, you are the father of my child, you are my first love okay, okay Jake? I loved you okay, I spent so long trying to convince myself that I didn`t, but I do, are you happy? Did you get what you came here for? My surrender?"
"You`re the mother of my child too." Jake said calmly.
"Go away Jake."
Clara came into the room. "Daddy will you come play with me?"
"I`ll be there in a bit okay?" Jacob said.
And I loved the way that he gently brush her baby hair back behind her ears and the way that he stared lovingly into her eyes like she was the best thing in the whole world.
Suddenly I felt Jacob grab my hand and walk me out of the kitchen and outside.
"Let go of my hand," I whisper sternly as I pulled away from him.
"Let`s go in my car," he said.
"I`m not going anywhere," I said.
"Come on," he said as he grabbed my hand and dragged me to his car.
"Look at me Scar."
He turned my chin to look at him. His touch lit a fire in me.
"I love you."
And it was simple as that for him to steal his way back into my heart.
"Shut up Jake." I said staring down at the floor.
I was weak when it came to him.
"I do Scar. It took me some time to become a better person without fears, but I did it and I changed. I`m here now and I`m not going anywhere. I`m here to stay. You said that didn`t you. You said that if I come back I have to stay and I`m here. I`m sorry I didn`t come sooner, I needed more help before I commit..."
"Jacob, don`t come back a third time thinking that you can just win your way back in, you have trouble committing but I have trouble trusting you now."
"I know, and I don`t expect you to trust me just now."
He was so calm. How could he be so calm when I was just burning up inside?
"I wanna be here for you, I wanna be here for our daughter..."
"I don`t want you here Jacob...I don`t want you anywhere my daughter."
And now I was my Mom. I was refusing to let someone I once love in. I was rejecting his proposal to come back. I am my mother`s daughter. It never hit me this hard what my Mom had to go through to raise me up right. Would I be making the same mistake that my mother made if I refuse Jacob his part in Clara`s life?
I did love him once. He held me in his arms and I stayed there all night. I use to kiss his lips. I use to hold his hand. I use to make love with him. How could three years have changed so much? I loved him once and now I couldn`t trust myself to love him again. Everything felt so different but I knew it was all in my head.
"I don`t want to be with you anymore Jake," I said then I left the car. I was making this decision for my daughter and myself. I finally understood my Mom`s decision.
Clara laid asleep in her father`s arm. He held her in his arms all night.
"Mom are you ready to leave?" I asked.
She nodded her head yes.
I took Clara from Jacob`s arms. He looked up at me tired and old. He did look old. Had he been stress? Alone?
"Can I come see her tomorrow?" he asked standing up.
Everyone got quiet and turned to look at us.
"I`ll let you know if she wants to see you," I said though I knew that she would. I didn`t want to deny him his right to see his daughter. I knew Clara longed for a father`s comfort. I knew she wanted a father like all the other kids.
"Mommy!" Clara yelled.
I woke up to see her at the door.
"Mommy! Where`s daddy?" she asked running in a funny way to me.
"Yeah Daddy came to my birthday yesterday, he was wearing a black coat..."
"Oh honey..." I remembered what I said to Jacob yesterday. "Daddy went home."
Clara`s face suddenly went sad. "He didn`t even say bye? I don`t even see him every day," she said as little tears began to trickle down her soft face.
I wiped them away for her. "Oh honey, Daddy`s a busy person," I said as I laid her down to sleep besides me.
Her little hiccups came. "I miss him already, why can`t he just stay here with us?"
"...Because he has things he needs to do," I said softly.
I wish that he was here too. I wish I could let him be here. Committing to me was one thing, but committing to his daughter was another thing. He couldn`t hurt her the way that he hurt me.
"Stay here until you feel better okay," I said to Clara. She nodded her head yes.
I walked out of the room.
She was standing at the doorway.
"We need to talk."
Mom and I were sitting at the dinner table.
"...You`re doing to her what I did to you," Mom said.
"...What do you want me to do Mom? You know how I`m feeling right now."
"Remember your seventh birthday and you wondered why your Dad wasn`t there?"
"Why wasn`t he?"
"Because I wouldn`t let him be there...I was selfish Scarlette, I only thought of myself, I thought at the time that I was doing what was best for you but I was just always afraid of hurting myself again...don`t let your daughter go through what you went through, don`t become me."
"So what Mom?" I said trying not to let the anger show. "I go to Jake and tell him it's okay to come back and leave when he wants, am I supposed to tell Clara that he`s going to be here now and then?"
"It's better than never being there right?" Mom said then she got up from the table and left.
"Jacob left already when you said Clara didn`t want to see him," Mrs. Locket said. "He was a mess and he looked terrible...but he said he needed to get home straight away...he told me everything Scarlette, and I don`t blame you for not letting him back in...But I think if you would have let him this time, I think he would have stayed."