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[font "times new roman" [size10 [i [b [u Eight Months Ago]]] [#faffff .] [size28 [#FFC0CB ♚]] [#faffff .] [i Avaline sat in complete awe, a lawyer and a man she'd never met before sitting on the other side of cold metal table. She'd come in to discuss her mother's final will only to be met with the news that her father of all.people had found her. [b [#ffc0cb "You're my father?"]] The man nodded slowly, as if he was both ashamed and unsure about the statement. Avaline's cheeks burned, her frustration building at the thought of him appearing now of all times. [b [#ffc0cb "Why didn't you come back while she was still alive?"]]
[b [#6dbab4 "I didn't know until recently when she reached out about her condition and told me about you. We'd broken up because of..."]] he paused, emerald green eyes fixing themselves into the palms of his hands. He looked back up to Avaline with a sad far off look before continuing. [b [#6dbab4 "... family conflicts."]]
[b [#ffc0cb "So..?"]]
[b [#6dbab4 "So she never told me about you. But I'm here now and I promise I'm going to take care of you. Anything you want."]] The room fell silent, the promise already feeling empty. They all knew he couldn't give her what she wanted, her mother back and life back to the way it was two weeks ago. He drummed his fingers against the table nervously, filling the empty space with the beating and causing for Avaline to grow more impatient.
[b [#ffc0cb "What about my inheritance?"]] Again to be met with an awkward silence telling her that this day could, in fact, get worse. The lawyer began shuffling through her file, eventually pulling out a piece of paper that Avaline assumed was her mother's will.
[b "Your mother specifically placed you as her only benefactor in her will, but you are not allowed to have access to it until you're twenty-five years old."] The lawyer pulled an envelope from her file, [b "She had also left a letter for you."]
Avaline snatched the envelope and tore into the paper, fumbling with her fingers as she straightened out the papers and looked over the familiar handwriting. The letter was long and personal, Avaline had to blink repeatedly to prevent her tears from spilling onto her cheeks. Her mother wanted Avaline to get to know her father and pursue her dreams by going to school... The girl sighed, losing her battle with the tears and allowing a couple to stream.
[b [#ffc0cb "Okay,"]] she said, looking between the two of them calmly. [b [#ffc0cb "I know what I want to do."]]]]]
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[font "times new roman" [size10 [i [b [u University Orientation]]] [#faffff .] [size28 [#FFC0CB ♚]] [#faffff .] [i The last eight months of Avaline's life had been turned upside down. Her father was the crowned prince and eldest son to Teddy and Lauta-Beth Windsor of England, so her popping into their lives out of no where caused quite a bit if trouble at first that has mostly died down. She'd gone from a family of two, to one, and now too many to count. Her father came with seven siblings and each of those aunts or uncles had a family of their own... Her family had easily multiplies by like 30 people. Some were welcoming, others weren't but that was to be expected considering the situation.
Avaline had spent the summer living with her father and his family. He had a wife and a four year old daughter named Emily who had been more than excited to have a brand new sister. His wife was a little stand-offish but eventually warmed up to her as time went on and her father kept his promise of treating Avaline like she belonged there. Honestly it made Avaline feel like she was a teenager again living with them but eventually it came time for her to follow her dream and go to school in Paris.
They had a special breakfast for dinner the night before and before the crack of dawn a driver took her and her luggage to the airport for an early-morning flight. Her father had given her a single card to use for her college expenses so she could buy her supplies and some personal belongings for her room upon arrival. She had planned to buy lots of different supplies and and easel... Maybe a curtain so she could have a little bit of privacy.
The clicking of high heels echoed on the cement of the girl's dorm courtyard. Over her jet black curls Avaline wore a white baseball cap, a blue jean jacket over a floral cami top, white capri pants and a pair of pale green sandal high heels. Most of the other college students hadn't even arrived to their dorms yet which benefited someone like Avaline who didn't like crowds of people, especially in England after news broke. She hurried down the corridors, one hand holding her rolling luggage behind her, eyes focused on the piece of paper's directions to the dorm room in the other hand.
She was finally going to be an [s [font "times new roman" [size10 starving]]] artist.
Avaline found that her dorm's door was already wide open and she peeked inside. She could see a blond girl unpacking the last final details of her room, this must've been her room mate. Avaline leaned her body on the doorway and kicked one of her manicured heeled feet in front of the other, cozying herself into the frame as she observed the blonde doe.
When the girl threw herself into her bed and seemed to relax, Avaline decided to speak up. [b [#ffc0cb "You look pretty comfortable."]] Her french accented voice was deep and lyrical, [b [#ffc0cb "Hope you didn't expect any alone time."]] she teased, brown eyes glittering with playfulness.
Avaline stepped into the room cautiously, studying the blonde girl's cozy little set-up and smiling slightly. She really hadn't wasted any time making herself feel at home. [b [#ffc0cb "I'm Avaline, but my friends call me Liv."]]
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[center [size12 Classical music played through airpods and a young blonde woman tapped her foot along to the rhythm. The sound filled her body and she lifted off, moving fluidly across the room feeling like she was flying through clouds. As the song slowed to an end so did her movements. Ending a dramatic pose. Behind her someone began to clap.]]
[center [size12 Dropping her pose and pulling the airpod from her ear the young woman turned to the person who had made up her audience. An older woman made her way across the room. The woman had sharp facial features and even sharper light blue eyes. You could tell she was studying every move that was made, judging and critiquing it. The woman spoke to her in their native Russian. “It makes me sad that I will not be able to see you dance again my Dove. There is beauty in every step you take Annika.”]]
[center [size12 Annika smiled. “Thank you Babushka.”]]
[center [size12 Her grandmother took her hands in hers. “You have a gift my Ptitsa, this school will help you build it, but…” Her grandmother let out a low sad sigh and looked out the windows towards the streets of Moscow. “Still I worry. Paris is so far and I am so old. I can only hope to live long enough to see you dance across the stage with our ballet.”]]
[center [size12 The Moscow ballet had been Annika’s goal since she was old enough to lace up her own pointe. “Do not worry.” She said with a smile. “You gave me your love for the ballet and I will make you proud. You will see me dance, I can promise you this.”]]
[center [size12 The door to the outside world opened and the chill air flooded the studio. Her father stood at the door, her sweater thrown over his arm as he gestured to the time on his wrist. “I must go now, the plane leaves soon.” The two women pecked each other on the cheek and said their goodbyes.]]
[center [size12 The flight to Paris was quiet. Annika listened to the music on her phone and her father sat across from her on the private jet immersed in his work. When it came time to land he put away his computer and looked at her.]]
[center [size12 “Are you sure I can’t get you your own apartment?” He asked her. “The dorms will not be safe. It would ease my could get you a place where someone could watch you.”]]
[center [size12 Annika rolled her eyes. They had had this conversation countless times since she had announced she would be going to school here. “The campus security is the best father. I will be safer in a dorm with a roommate than I would be in a cold apartment on my own.” He sighed defeatedly as the plane began to descend.]]
[center [size12 Most of her stuff had been sent to the dorm room the week before, her boxes were stacked to one side of the shared dorm. She had to reassure her father countless times that she would be alright and that she would call him if she needed anything. He made her double and triple check that she had her phone and credit cards before he finally left. Annika promised she would get lunch with him before he left tomorrow evening, for now she just needed time to unpack and get used to what would be her life now.]]
[center [size12 When he was finally gone she began to unpack her things, organizing her side of the room and making sure she had everything she would need for her first day of class. Her closet was filled with practice outfits she would need for class and the different shoes she would need for class and performances, the other side was filled with casual clothes for the days she would be off.]]
[center [size12 When she was finally done putting away all of her things she collapse back on her freshly made bed and let out a breath she didn’t know she had been holding, beginning to wonder if this was what the beginning of freedom felt like.]]