June 11, 2016

In Which Octavius Makes Clear What It Just Is

October 12, 1200

"Not a chance! Here I thought you at least had the brains not to need to be told twice, but I won't stand for you to make any temporary appearances in my granddaughter's life." Thank God Holladrin was spending a few days with her future sister-in-law in Ravenhold. She never had to know that Karlspan had shown up, assuming Octavius could get over his own fury before he saw her. "She may be a grown woman now, but the facts are the same: if you keep showing up only to disappear again, you'll just keep hurting her. I won't have you putting her through that at her own wedding."

"But it's her wedding--and I'm her only surviving parent! It's only right that I be there."

"It was 'only right' for you to have been there when her mother died too," Octavius snarled back. "And even if you needed a little time, you've had twenty years to step up and start being a father. I suppose I have no authority to ban you from her adult home, but if you want to make herself a permanent part of her life, then keep in mind it may take her years to trust you; don't make her start dealing with that doubt on what should be one of the happiest days of her life."

"She did invite me, you know." Karlspan balled his fists, clearly unaware of what that invitation had really been--half obligation, half last fleeing hope. "I believe the bride's wishes for her own wedding day would trump her grandfather's."

"She did invite--and you told her you weren't coming. Do you really think she'll be able to think about anything else if you show up unannounced?"

"She asked if I'd walk her down the aisle!"

"And you said you wouldn't be there to do so!" And he had no right to the task anyway. Holladrin deserved to walk down the aisle with someone whose love and care she trusted, whose love and care she knew. "And she knew you wouldn't be, since she asked me to do it before she even heard back from you. She's wise to your little mind games now. You're out of second chances. If you want to be in Holladrin's life, then it's about damn time you commit to being in it for good."

Karlspan's fists faltered. As a younger man, Octavius might have seen that weakness and taken some form of pity on it--but as a younger man, no worthless nominal father had ever strung his granddaughter around for two decades. "Are you ready to do that? Are you ready to actually be her father?"

A resigned breath sharp from his nose, Karlspan looked away.

"I thought so."

"Look, it's just--"

"Oh, no! I don't care what you think it 'just' is. It's just her whole life, Karlspan." And if he didn't see that by now, he never would. To hell with him. "If you have any love for her at all, you'll head back to Dovia right now--quickly, and quietly."

NEXT CHAPTER:

3 comments:

Van said...

Karlspan won't be crashing the wedding.

S.B. said...

Good. What an asshole. Octavius should have punched him - well I guess he did.

Van said...

Guess so. XD