Ten years have passed, and in that time she had had barely anything to do with her children. No one still knew where Trisha was. Derrick blamed her these days for her disappearance. He sometimes said that Trisha might be dead for all they knew. But Felicia didn’t think so. She believed that girl, now a woman, was alive somewhere.

Brenda was doing well. Her restaurant has prospered and now had two branches in the city. They still didn’t relate much. Her first daughter preferred to avoid her. As for her son…

Felicia blinked back her tears as she sat quietly on the back seat of the car. Bryan was married and had a two year old daughter. After years of trying to work out a reconciliation, he had agreed to see her today.

He had got married without their permission and without introducing the woman he wanted to marry to them. She hadn’t even known he was married until a few months ago when news of it has reached her.

When the driver drove through the opened gates, Felicia used her handkerchief to wipe her face, straightened out her dress and prepared to meet her son and his family.

“Good evening, ma.” The young woman who opened the door greeted. “You are welcome to our home, ma. I am Rachel, Bryan’s wife.”

Felicia looked at her. She was beautiful. She had heard that she was a fashion designer. An orphan who had been brought up by her Uncle. She wasn’t the kind of woman Felicia would have chosen for her son, so maybe it was good Bryan married her without them knowing.

“Hello. Thank you for inviting me over.” Felicia returned her friendly smile.

“I’m sorry you couldn’t be at our wedding. I tried to talk to Bryan about it, but he wouldn’t listen to me.” Rachel said as they sat down. ” But I am glad you are here now.”

“So am I.” It wasn’t the young woman’s fault, so she wouldn’t blame her. “So, where is he?”

“Inside. I will go get him. Excuse me, please.” Rachel stood up and left her in the living room.

Felicia looked around as she waited. It was a nice room. Not very classy, just simple and nice. She supposed Bryan would like something like that. Her children had never been carried away by their wealth.

She heard footsteps and turned. And when she saw him, her eyes filled with tears.

“Oh my God! Bryan, look at how you have grown.” She stood up, but stopped herself from rushing forward to embrace him.

She didn’t know how he would react.

“Good evening, Mum.” Bryan walked towards her. “Stop crying, Mum. Please.”

“I just can’t believe how much you have grown. You are a man now. And you look so much like your father.” Felicia wiped her tears with her handkerchief. “I mean, you have always done so, but it is more obvious now.”

Bryan hesitated for a moment before he reached out and hugged her.

The embrace felt like forgiveness to Felicia and it gave her so much relief.

“I am so grateful to see you, Bryan. Thank you for agreeing to let us meet.” She said.

“Let’s sit down, Mum.” Bryan suggested and took her to the sofa to seat. “Em, can I get you anything?”

“No, seeing you is enough for me.” Felicia smiled. “How are you? I mean, I can see you are doing fine. You look well and everything. Your wife is beautiful, by the way.”

“Thank you, Mum. And yes, we are doing well. I have a good job and a happy home.”

“A happy home. I guess you mean, not like our home where no one was really happy.” Felicia murmured. “I am sorry I tried to control everyone’s life. I just wanted what was best for you all, that’s all. But I should have realised that you all had a right to make your own choices. I guess my constantly trying to push you into politics is why you have been so angry with me for years.”

“That is true, Mum. We were your children, but we had a right to choose our friends and our careers.” Bryan nodded. “But it’s not only the fact that you and Dad wanted all of us to be in politics like both of you are that made me stay away. It was because of Trisha. When I heard she had run away from home and no one could find her, I blamed you. I blamed you and Dad, and didn’t want to have anything more to do with both of you.”

“You were right to blame. It was all my fault. I pushed you all away with my constant criticisms and controlling nature.” She would always blame herself for Trisha’s disappearance, Felicia thought.

“It was not only your fault, Mum. Dad too is to blame. He left our upbringing and every decision to you. That was not right. Anyway, I shouldn’t have avoided you all these years. It didn’t achieve anything, but destroy our family. My daughter doesn’t even know her grandparents. That is not right.” It made Bryan sad that he had allowed his anger to separate him from his parents. “I am sorry, Mum. I should have forgiven you and Dad long ago, and try to reconcile with you.”

“I am sorry too, Bryan. A mother should care for her children, not control their lives.”

“It’s all right now, Mum.” Bryan hugged her again. “I’m glad I listened this time to Rachel and allowed you to visit. I’m glad to see you, Mum.”

“Me too.” Happy, Felicia held his hand. “How is Brenda? I know you and her see often. How is she?”

“She is fine. There’s a man in her life. He’s serious about her.” Bryan thought about it and added. “We will go see her together. I think we should begin the reconciliation of our family from today.”

“Oh, I will like that, Bryan. Thank you.”

“Hold on, let me get Rachel and Annie.” Bryan said and stood up.

“We are here.” Rachel announced, coming into the room with a little girl. “Annie, we want you to meet Grandma. She is Daddy’s mummy.”

The little girl ran forward to embrace Felicia.

And Felicia picked her up and held her in her arms. Tears of joy flowed freely as she held her granddaughter.

*-*

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