Story:Father Knows Best
Father Knows Best
Written by Shataivian
Two and a half weeks had passed since the All-Star game. Two and a half weeks had passed since she finally let Damario go. Two and a half weeks since she helped expose Ivie Robins’ past to the world. Two and a half weeks since she was shown the empty envelope that was supposed to have her birth certificate in it. Two and a half weeks since she spoke to Jason about re-ordering a new one. Two and a half weeks. And nothing.
Baltimore had just finished their game against the Queens Pride on their court. Being in New York meant her father could easily attend the game. After speaking with both Valencia and Jason, seeing him brought up enough complicated feelings that made Lisa question all of ASW. Lisa was acutely aware that Texas was on a five-game losing streak directly afterwards. It was Lisa’s fault, wasn’t it?
Lisa left with her father, fresh after her win, and went out to dinner. Lisa picked at her food and barely even looked up at her father, let alone speak with him. David did not push, though, and only brought her back home with him. He set up two chairs facing one another in the living room, exactly like the last time the two spoke when Lisa brought up Emmett. He sat and invited Lisa to join him. Without questioning, Lisa sat and kept her head lowered.
“Talk to me,” David finally pressed. Lisa turned her head away. “Is it the Ivie thing?” Lisa’s shoulders rose to shield her. “Lisa…”
“I wish I didn’t do it,” she finally squeaked.
“You stood your ground.” David leaned forward and gripped Lisa’s hands gently. “It’s not going to end her career or anything like that.”
“Which makes it even more shitty!” Lisa pulled her hands back and turned sideways in her seat. “How fucking petty am I to tell everyone something so unimportant only to hurt her?”
“It’s not petty. It’s a warning.” David sat straight in his seat.
“Who got that information?” Lisa peaked through her eyelids at her father.
“Honestly? It was all Valencia. She was on board the moment I told her and did some digging.” So, Valencia truly was the sleuth behind it all.
“Was doing this her idea?”
“Come to think of it, yeah. She was the one to bring up this particular method, but we both agreed something needed to be done.”
Lisa sat up sniffing and wiping her face. As she tried to compose herself, she put all the knowledge she had in a neat pile in her head. This wasn’t over. There was still too much she needed to get out of David even if some of it wasn’t anything she wanted to hear. She took a deep breath.
“What happened at ASW last year?” she calmly asked. David crossed his arms and sat back in his seat.
“You tell me. One moment we’re bickering, the next, I’m on the floor with a broken jaw.”
“Remember the last time we sat like this? We were talking about Sandrine and Emmett and Bellamy… You backhanded me.” David instinctually placed his hand on his forehead and brushed it back over his greying hair. “You’ve always been rough with me whenever you wanted things to go your way. I was used to it. But after talking with my teammates, Jason, and even Damario… I… I donno.” David terrified her. How can a man, a father, put his hands on her? How could she trust someone like that? “You grabbed me at ASW and… I just reacted. Plus… Seeing you so overwhelmed with joy when you saw Emmett? It hurt. I was… mad? Jealous? I donno.”
That’s what happened at ASW the year before? David burst out of his seat and fell to his knees before Lisa, wrapping his arms around her. “I should have never… EVER put my hands on you like that. I regretted it the moment I did. I’ve wanted to tell you that from the beginning.” The moment felt emotional but neither one of them were able to shed a tear. Maybe they were tired. Tired of this ridiculous back and forth the two had gotten themselves into for the last six years. Lisa reciprocated David’s hug and patted him on his back. “All this time I thought you were just angry. I thought you were just lashing out for the cameras,” David said as he sat back in his seat. “That’s why I… well… why I told that journalist I was going to…”
“To sue me? That makes sense. So, why didn’t you?”
“Valencia. She was the one to talk me out of it. She told me I was overreacting and that deep down I didn’t really want to sue my daughter. She was right,” David faintly chuckled.
“Valencia’s full of great ideas, isn’t she,” Lisa chortled.
“Yeah… She sure seems to have taken a liking to you.” He rose his head slightly. “She… tell you you owe her?” Lisa looked up at her father, debating on whether or not to answer him. But it didn’t matter. Lisa’s lack of an immediate response seemed to say enough as David nodded to himself. Nothing Lisa could do about it now except to lean into it.
“You know I still can’t seem to order a new birth certificate?” David slowly leaned his head back. “Bellamy is my real mom. That’s true, right?” David nodded. “And DuPont is actually her maiden name and not just her married name?” Again, David gave her a slow affirming nod. “For some reason that still doesn’t work for me. I just tried to order a new birth certificate a few weeks back and I was still denied.”
“Why does that matter?” David’s voice wasn’t harsh, nor did it feel to have any malice behind it. However, his deep voice boomed.
“My passport needs updating.”
“All you need is your old passport,” David answered quickly.
“Not if I’ve lost it.”
“How could you be so irresponsible?”
“I can just order you a new one.”
“Whatever method you use, I can use, too.”
“So, just let me do it.”
“It’s my documents. I should have a copy of them.”
“Just let me order you a new one.”
“With what? My birth certificate? Why are you able to order a new passport but I can’t?”
“Lisa, I said let me handle it.”
Lisa’s abrupt compliance stalled David. He shook his head in shock a few times and then nodded. “Okay. Good,” he said, still in shock. “I’ll take care of it.”
“Just have it sent straight to me,” Lisa requested, and David grunted under his breath. Ordering a passport had a particular process. If he were to do it by mail, he would be required to mail her birth certificate in as proof of U.S. citizenship. Lisa wanting to have her new passport sent straight to her meant her birth certificate would also be returned to her in that same delivery.
“I’ll have to go in person to handle it since we don’t know where your birth certificate is,” David informed her.
“I can’t begin to guess how you’ll do it without my old passport or birth certificate. Your only other option would be a naturalization certificate, but I was born here in the U.S.”
“I’ll work it out.”
“Maybe,” Lisa began with one finger on her bottom lip and her gaze looking up to the right. “Maybe Valencia might be able to help. She is pretty good at gathering information. I’ll ask.” With that, Lisa slapped her knees and stood to her feet. “You’re right. It’ll all get worked out.” She pulled out her phone and just stared down at it with her back to David. She just needed to check the time, but that’s not the only reason she held there in place.
“She say anything?” David hastily asked, trying to peer over her shoulder.
“Hmm? Oh, I’ll let you know,” Lisa smirked. “Anyway, I better get back to the team so we can head back to Baltimore.” She turned around and hugged her father. “Thanks for talking with me. I feel a lot better about a bunch of this stuff. I want things to get better from here out.” Gently hugging her back, David nodded.
“I do, too.” She squeezed him tight and then said something David hadn’t truly heard his daughter say in over six years.
“I love you.”
She didn’t laugh or add some joke to it. She didn’t even say anything afterwards. She let those three words linger until David could say it back. He told her he loved her, too, kissed the top of her head, and sent her on her way. Get better from here on out? Not with Valencia in the way. If things were going to get better, action needed to be taken to get ahead. It was official. Time for plan B.
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