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This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. Alienation Victim All rights reserved Copyright © 2006 by Crystal Ordonez No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any form without written permission by the author.
This book is dedicated to all victims of Parental Alienation Syndrome, child and adult.
David Succaar (pronounced soo-kar) sometimes felt his name really did classify him. His name was often mispronounced 'sucker'. He was often accused of being a sucker. He admitted occasionally to being just that. A sucker. He was in that most boring of fields, engineering. He knew about reliability and safety and mechanics. His specialty was locomotives. After college and a short stint in the military, he married his second cousin, Margot, for fear of being accused of being a faggot. He had no interest in other men, but he had very little interest in women either. But marriage was expected and so he got married. His family was under whelmed with his choice of wife, but the entire family was understated and no one said or did very much to keep the relatives from in-breeding. The marriage was miserable from the proposal until the divorce. Twenty years of miserable. After ten years, Margot decided she was a lesbian. David, who was already miserable, was not surprised. He could remember every time they had sex. It was always when she decided it was time to have a child. It usually took four sexual encounters to knock her up and so the total number of times they had sex in the first ten years of their marriage was twelve. The first four created Karen. The second four created Joshua. The third four created Michael. Then David took matters into his own hands and had a vasectomy. Margot fought him tooth and nail. She wanted more children. She wanted more child support when she divorced him. David never wanted the divorce. He would have remained married no matter what. Although not a religious man, he believed in the sanctity of marriage. And he did not want to appear as a failure. The divorce took ten years. Margot wanted to better herself and so David paid her way through nursing school. She took the children with her as she studied in New York. She studied both nursing and lesbianism with a passion, often leaving on weekends with her latest lover when David flew from California to New York for visitation. She made sure that her mother stayed with David and
the children. Margot's mother was co-conspirator in the master plan. In order to keep David in line, Margot told him he could not mention her new found love of women. He might be thinking of using it to gain custody of the children. Well, he could forget that plan. Margot announced that if he told of her lesbianism, she would tell the courts and anyone with their own personal set of ears that he harbored thoughts of molesting Karen. That is why he could not be trusted to visit with the children alone. Karen was trained from birth to believe everything her mother told her and she would be an excellent witness for the prosecution. And so over the course of ten years and many thousands of dollars, Margot filed for divorce and moved the children to New York, as far away from Los Angeles as she could get. As far away from David as she could get. David loved his children and could not bear the once a month weekend visits which were all he could afford on his budget. He began looking for a new job. A company that made snow plows in New Jersey hired him at a pay cut of thirty thousand dollars a year. They knew a sucker when they saw one. David was now allowed to see the children every other weekend and for three hours every Tuesday night. The Tuesday night visits were always in downtown New York as some incredibly expensive children's entertainment restaurant with plenty of video games that his sons could play on instead of visiting with their father. Karen would sit with her father near the window and let her father help her with her homework. She was exceptionally bright and was in advanced classes. Three hours a week was spent immersed in mathematical equations with Karen, while Joshua and Michael honed their hand-eye co-ordination. The weekend visits consisted of going where Karen dictated. If David disagreed, Karen would quietly report his transgression to her mother, who would announce that Karen was too busy with homework or her many school clubs to attend weekend visitation with her father. Once David brought up having his sons live with him. Margot's reaction was extreme. He was called Chester the Molester and threatened with legal action if he ever brought it up again.
Margot knew a sucker when she saw one. When David was not at work or with his children he began spending time on the Internet. He flitted in and out of chat rooms, speaking rarely. He met a few women in these rooms and once even flew to Walla Walla, Washington for a weekend of drunken sex. He did not email or call her afterwards and she did not try and contact him. He assumed she did not remember their meeting. One night a screen name caught his eye. LoveBeinMom. He chatted with this screen name for 4 hours the first night and before he logged off he found that the screen name belonged to a single mother of one and one on the way in Denver. The father of her second, unborn child, had thrown them out in the street when he found she was pregnant and she had just managed to secure housing for her and her daughter, who had just turned two years old. Her unborn child was due the following May. Alice was eighteen years younger than David. In less than a week David found he was very much attracted to LoveBeinMom, whose real name was Alice. Alice's daughter was named Amber. David convinced her to give him her phone number and they began talking on the phone almost nightly. The only nights he did not talk to her were the nights he was with his children. And Alice seemed to understand completely. David could not deny his feelings after a month of talking with Alice on the phone. He was in love. Deeply. So was she. But she wanted him to understand that she had been burned very badly by the fathers of her two children and demanded nothing less than complete honesty in their relationship. "Don't lie to me or beat me and you can have me forever.“ She promised. David surprised Alice in the hospital when her son was born. She named him James, after her father. David had been on the phone with Alice when she went into labor and when the line was free he called the airline and reserved the first possible flight from New York to Denver. Young James was 7 hours old when they met face to face. David volunteered to sign James birth certificate as his
biological father. Alice agreed after much discussion as she recovered in her hospital bed. James Succaar was released within 48 hours and went home with his new family. David went back to work as soon as possible and began making plans to move his new family into his home. The new move was made when little James was only one month old. Alice quickly made the bachelor pad a home and prepared to welcome David's children with open arms. The problems began immediately. Alice did not miss the look when she was introduced to Margot and her live-in lover, Christine. Both lesbians looked Alice over as if she were a chunk of meat. Neither seemed able to believe that this woman had given birth a mere four weeks ago. Alice had recovered her figure completely, with the exception of her breasts. They were not small to begin with, and filled with mother's milk, they were easily twice their usual size. Neither Margot or Christine had ever recovered their figures. Quite the contrary. Both women were beyond obese. Alice guessed that they were both beyond the three hundred pound mark. Amber also posed a problem. She had taken immediately to David as a father figure and was already calling him 'Daddy'. Alice saw the deep frowns when Amber first called for Daddy. And then there were David's children. They seemed to like Alice, for which she was grateful, but she could not understand why the boys ran off almost immediately after their mother disappeared and they found seats in the restaurant to play video games. She also watched, while quietly nursing James and minding Amber, as Karen and her father worked over complicated algebra problems, but did not really talk beyond “How is school, Karen?” And “Fine, Dad.”. The first weekend was, to Alice's eye, a disaster. Karen, Joshua and Michael fought for Ambers attention and affection. At one point this manifested itself in a fight that had Michael and Karen rolling on the floor. More than once, they came close to kicking a sleeping James in his bouncer on the floor. David broke up the fight, told the children to behave, but beyond that, handed out no punishment. Alice bit her tongue and said nothing.
Alice decided to give the children some discipline. She assigned very small chores for the kids when they came to visit. Simple things, like helping with dinner and washing the dishes afterwards. She quickly found out that the children did not know how to do simple chores. Everything was done for them, by their mother. “You have never held a broom?“ Alice said, incredulously to Karen. Alice found it hard to believe this, as Karen was thirteen years old. Karen shook her head and looked sad. Alice perked up and smiled, reassuring the girl that it was something that was very simple to teach. And so Alice began teaching David's children simple household chores. She taught them to sweep and to mop. She taught them to vacuum and to load a dishwasher. She even went so far as to teach them to wash dishes by hand, which the kids thought was great fun. Alice found their strengths and weaknesses. She had Michael, who at ten was beginning to enter a clumsy stage, put away the eggs and handle the most delicate chores. When Michael dropped an egg on the floor he looked at Alice as if he expected the Wrath of God to reign down upon his head. Alice simply handed him a paper towel and taught him how to clean up a broken egg. “Accidents happen. Everyone has broken an egg in their life. It's no big deal, Michael, really.“ She told him gently as the boy seemed on the verge of tears. Joshua was the impatient one. He was also a perfectionist. Alice gave him little things to do that required patience. Alice put Joshua in charge of watching little Amber. Amber absolutely loved Joshua and followed him everywhere he went. At the end of each visit, before his mother and her girlfriend pulled up in their van, Joshua would take Amber on his lap and tell her that he would see her soon and not to worry. Alice enjoyed watching the twelve year old boy with his little two year old step-sister. Karen seemed to feel that, since she was the oldest, she should be in charge of the most important chores. She did not like that Alice rotated the chores often and made each child responsible
for their own. Alice also took the boys aside and suggested to them that they spend time with their father instead of playing video games. “You may as well stay home and play video games for all the time it gives you with your Dad.“ She said. She also insisted that Karen not bring her homework with her, so she too could talk to her father, instead of picking his brain. After about three months the three older kids found themselves feeling much better about themselves and their father. Weekend trip planning was begun shortly after the older kids left from the last weekend and by the Tuesday before the next weekend three suggestions were made and then voted on by all three children. Democracy reigned, and the boys found themselves enjoying their weekends more and more. Their mother, however, was beginning to have major problems with everything. She insisted that the chores were too difficult on her delicate children Michael, especially was ADHD and could not possibly be expected to have any responsibilities. But Alice treated Michael the same as any other child. To her he was not handicapped. She simply ignored Margot's complaints. The most difficult hurdle for Alice was the way Karen interacted with her father. Oftentimes Karen would run her fingers through her fathers hair in a manner that reminded Alice of the way she ran her fingers through David's hair, often times in a very sexual manner. Alice also noticed Karen's insistence upon sitting on her fathers lap. She mentioned this often to David, and he said he'd never thought of it like that before. “It doesn't strike you as strange she sits on your lap and runs her fingers through your hair?“ Alice asked. “Well, no.“ David replied. "You do it.“ "I am your lover. Your wife. Karen is your daughter.“ David's jaw dropped open. David took Karen aside and talked to her about it. They talked about inappropriate touching. Karen promised to watch herself, but in reality she tried to get closer and closer. David tried to bring it up to Margot and was rewarded with
another Chester the Molester rant which greatly upset him. Alice could hear the ranting through the phone from across the room. Karen was 'otherwise occupied' for two months afterwards. When she returned for visits, Alice walked into the bedroom to find Karen holding David's head in her lap and running her fingers through his hair. Karen gave Alice a look that said, "You can't stop me.“. Alice stopped it, very upset. David, realizing what had happened, scolded lightly. The next weekend visit, Margot announced that Karen no longer wanted to visit with her father. As her mother, Margot would respect Karen's wishes. The downward spiral began. David mourned Karen as if she had died. Alice tried to get him involved in projects with Joshua and Michael, but he did not seem interested. It took him about two months to snap out of it and then he decided they would buy a house. Joshua and Michael loved going and viewing houses with the family and they helped in the final decision. They moved in at the end of November and the boys helped in the move. They had a grand time helping arrange furniture and buying sheets and curtains for their bedroom, which they would share when they stayed weekends. Again, Alice was struck by the looks on Margot and Christine's faces when they first saw the new house. It was hard to believe anyone could frown so deeply. Alice had never owned a home before and she took immaculate care of this one. The walk was always free of the snow and salted, so little girls could play and not slip on ice. Margot and Christine never shoveled their walkway and the house they lived in seemed always to be in disrepair. New Years weekend was spent with Joshua and Michael. They drank sparkling apple cider when the clock struck midnight and the weekend was very nice and cozy. One of the last things Michael said to them was, "This feels like a family.“ The next weekend was going to be extended, because of
Martin Luther King's birthday. They had planned a trip to a black history museum, as the boys wanted to learn about Martin Luther King, Jr. David tried to call when they did not arrive. He called every hour until midnight and then he went to bed. The police came in the morning and told him he would have to work these things out with his attorney. The police did not enforce visitation orders. And so the games began. Margot accused Alice of molesting the boys. Joshua and Michael weakly denied the charges when the social worker came, but their sister eagerly told the social worker that her father had been wanting to molest her for years. It was why she was afraid to visit with him anymore. But ultimately the social workers report found no abuse at all. Alice and David were never interviewed by Social Services. One court delay followed another. Two hundred dollars an hour was given to the attorney for phone calls, court appearances, more delays. Hundreds of dollars turned into thousands of dollars. The single victory came in July, when a court ordered visit brought the boys back to their father for a day long visit. From nine o'clock in the morning until five o'clock in the afternoon David saw his sons again. Joshua and Michael marveled that Amber was learning to count and little James was walking. They missed his first birthday. It was forgotten by all in the legal chaos. Alice stood by her husband. When he cried, she was a shoulder to cry on. She was angry for him, as he appeared so calm and unaffected by all the goings on. But after a year, she was tired of the fighting. The courts finally ordered all three children seen by a psychiatrist. The children all told the psychiatrist that they felt overwhelmed by the demanding chores and additionally, they felt that their father had chosen Alice and her children over them. The psychiatrist suggest no visitation until all parties were seen by a psychiatrist, first individually and then, eventually all together. The process would obviously take years and would cost many more thousands of dollars.
The hardest thing David ever did was tell his lawyer "No.“ There was nothing but back and forth fighting going on and it was bad for the kids. He stopped fighting. He should have stopped long ago, when the money ran out. But his attorney, a miracle of modern technology, accepted credit cards as payment. David was now thirty thousand dollars in the hole over the custody battle alone. In the background was his adoption of Amber, which cost him a mere five thousand dollars. David continued to give forth-five percent of his gross income to Margot in the name of child support. David promised Alice that they would take a break. His children had made it clear that they wanted nothing to do with him. He promised no contact for six months while they sat back and licked their wounds and tried to heal. Alice was grateful, but the promise turned sour in less than six weeks when David could not resist and called his children, who told him they hated him and never to call again. Alice again offered her shoulder. David did this about every six months. They sought counseling. Alice complained she could not heal with David when he ripped open her wounds. It was not helping that he refused to keep his word. The worst time came when David was playing with Amber and James one morning. He suddenly walked into the house and announced he was going to see his other children. Alice begged him not to, that Margot would probably have him arrested, but David ignored her pleas. He returned three hours later. They'd moved, he said. No forwarding address. He began another search for them, ignoring his mountain of debt. When Alice told their therapist about this incident, the therapist suggest that David might want to respect his wife's wishes. David was so obsessed with his biological children that he was forgetting to pay bills. In the fourteen months since the day the children didn't appear for their visitation, the water had been shut off half a dozen times and the mortgage had been late at least four times. And so Alice set boundaries. And David stepped over the line every time. Alice began to feel alone. She needed someone to
talk to. And so Alice began looking for friends. She knew her marriage was all but over, but she did not want to leave it. She sought pen pals overseas. That is how she met Peter. Peter Richardson lived in London and his work often brought him to the States. They chatted for months before they confessed to each other that they felt they were falling in love. Alice was, again, honest with David. David watched the love between Alice and Peter grow and knew he could not stop it. He wished them well. Amber loved her adoptive father and Alice knew this. Amber and Alice had a relationship like many mothers and daughters have. Amber was simply a smaller version of her mother and they often bumped heads. Alice decided that the best place for her daughter was with David and for this David was grateful. The single thing Alice worried about was David's other children. They had lied before, especially Karen, and Alice was saddened that she so mistrusted the children she had once loved like her own. She asked David to promise he would be careful and not fall into traps laid by Margot, Christina and / or, as much as Alice hated to think about it, Karen. David promised to be vigilant. When Peter had a business meeting in Albany, he paid Alice's way. Their first meeting went wonderfully and it took every ounce of strength Peter had to leave Alice behind to return to London. David was understanding. He spoke with Peter a few times as the two men arranged for Alice and James to move overseas. Web camera technology would keep Alice and Amber in touch. The day of the move, David drove them to the airport and watched with few tears as Alice struggled to remain cheerful. She hugged her daughter fiercely and gave David a final kiss on the cheek before taking little James' hand and boarding the plane. Alice and Amber visited with each other once a week via the web camera and spoke by telephone once a month, alternating who called whom. David and Alice were divorced seven months later. Alice and Peter were married three months after that. Alice gave birth to
another son one year after arriving in London. As the months turned to years, David adjusted to his life alone with Amber, who helped her Daddy as best she could. David still thought often about his older children, but his sense of responsibility towards Amber kept him from actively pursuing the other family. He hoped that, when they were older, they would seek him out. He was already more than willing to forgive them. He and Amber compromised. During the month of July, David had a month long visitation with James and on August the first James returned to Alice and Peter along with Amber, who then spent a month in London. David was not surprised to find that James now called Peter Dad. He was also unsurprised when James began developing a British accent. When the inevitable request came, David consented to the adoption with no argument. David buried himself in his work and raising his remaining daughter. He did not hear from Margot or Christine or Karen or Joshua or Michael for years. And when he did, it would change his life forever.
It began as a happy ending to a long nightmare would. The first telephone came the day after Amber left to visit her mother in London. David Succaar listened as apologies wafted into his ears. As he listened to the story unfold his heart melted. Threats and blackmail. She had been so scared. The poor thing. The stories she told were corroborated by her brothers. Yes, it had been horrible. A non-childhood filled with false words of love intermingled with threats. They had to comply or they would lose the love. Sometimes, yes, they truly believed that he didn't love them. No calls, no letters. They'd moved several times, hearing how it had to be done. David would come and hurt their mother. And of course, the hate the bad man felt for their mother was transferred to
them. They fought for a little while, but they had no choice but to give in. They heard the same tale over and over and over. Eventually it went from being lies to being fact. And now they were seeing the error of their ways. They had come home. David forgave as if the last seven years had never occurred. He forgot the lies the children told. He forgot the pain they caused him when they said "I don't want to talk to you.“ And "I hate you.“ And other vicious, malicious and spiteful things they had said to him in the past. He forgot that because of the lies, told both by his children and himself, he was a single man. He forgot to be careful. He forgot Alice's warnings. He forgot everything. Telephone contact became occasional visits became frequent visits. Occasionally the three lost children came together, but not often. He knew what Alice would have said, but he told himself she was wrong. This time she was dead wrong. She had never been wrong before about his ex-wife and his children, but he convinced himself that she was wrong this time. And, so convinced, he did not tell her he was breaking another promise to her, allowing Amber around his older children. He went to basketball games with his sons. He could not remember ever having such a wonderful time with them. They never talked about the past. Never. They simply enjoyed the present and looked forward to the future. Amber was reintroduced to her step-siblings when she returned from London. She remembered her brothers and was glad to see them again. She welcomed Karen less warmly, not having many memories about her. This seemed to hurt Karen and she spent a great deal of time showering the little girl with gifts. David found himself in a position where he had to convince Amber to withhold information from her mother during their online visits and telephone conversations. He taught her that a lie by omission was not really a lie. Amber never mentioned the return of her step-siblings to her mother. Alice was only happy that her daughter was getting out so much now. Before David had been such a home body. But Amber had field trips through her school and socialized enough. She had many friends and that made Alice very
happy. Alice assumed that that August he spent alone while Amber visited in London has somehow, finally brought him out of his shell. David was turning over a new leaf. David understood completely when his older children told him that their mother had no idea they had contacted him and were now reconciled with him. She still harbored resentment towards the wrongs she imagined he and Alice and even Amber and James had done to her. According to Michael, she particularly blamed Alice for her weight gain. Margot now tipped the scales at four hundred pounds. Christine died three years before the children contacted their father again. High blood pressure exacerbated by her weight. Christine died weighing four hundred and fifty pounds. Their first Christmas was a belated affair. The older children all wanted to celebrate together, but as they were expected at their mothers house, they combined Christmas and New Years with their father and Amber. Amber loved the double presents. David loved the feeling of family. Both boys were much busier with school after the first of the year, but Karen somehow found the time to spend with her father. The last night he spent with his older daughter was spent alone. They talked and laughed. The older daughter tucked in her younger step-sister and read her wonderful bed-time stories. He wished with all his heart that Alice could see the tenderness shared between the sisters. David and Karen were up very late talking and laughing and watching movies. Karen left her father standing in the earlyFebruary snow after a final peck on the cheek. David's first clue to trouble was the call from the after school program Amber was enrolled in. They told him that Amber was not on the bus that dropped the children off. The frown on his face was deep and he was suddenly very cold, but he maintained his calm. When the police arrived, not a full minute after he replaced the telephone receiver, he was numb, but somehow not surprised. They told him, coldly. That he was under arrest for rape of his daughter. That he had the right to remain silent. That if he gave up
the right to be silent, everything he said could and would be used against him in a court of law. They told him he had the right to an attorney, but if he could not afford an attorney one would be provided to him at no charge. He told them that he did understand when they asked him if he understood the rights as they had been explained to him and asked them where his daughter Amber was. They told him Amber was being taken care of by a state social worker. Having a great mistrust of lawyers, David did not have one retained and so he waited silently for the court appointed lawyer to arrive. He was assured again that Amber was fine and that the social worker in charge of her would be calling her mother as soon as possible to see if Amber could stay with her. David could only nod numbly imagining Alice's reaction to a phone call from a social worker at ten o'clock at night, London time. Alice's nightmare come true. The interrogation went on well into the evening. The police had enough circumstantial evidence to arrest, obviously. Karen had appeared at the police station the morning after she left her father standing on the doorstep and filed a report. Apparently shame drove her into the shower, destroying all physical evidence. Her mother appeared the next day to hold her hand and offer false statements to the police, who believed every word, apparently. The brothers were tracked down and offered grudging corroboration to their mothers statements on their father's character. Friends of the alleged victim stated that the daughter had attempted to reconcile with her father, but that she was scared that he still harbored ideas of molestation, even though she was now a grown woman. It seemed that witnesses for the prosecution were everywhere. Once he made bail, David went home to his empty house. He wondered where Amber was. He wondered where Alice was. His guess was that she was probably in US air space, if not already on the ground, rushing to her daughter. He wondered how this could happen to him as he got into bed and let exhaustion and tears drag him into sleep. David picked up the phone on the fourth ring. The sunshine
caused him to squint. "'Lo.“ He grunted. "Amber is with me now.“ Came a voice, shaking very slightly. "Hello Alice.“ David said, cradling his head in his hands. "I got the second flight out of Heathrow.“ Alice told him. David said nothing. He knew she would have been on the first available flight and knew without being told that he had Peter, Alice's current husband, to thank. He would have spent a good deal of time calming her. Alice was always grateful for his British calm when she was upset. Her ex-husband was now extremely grateful as well. Alice began with a deep sigh. "God damn it David, how could you have been so stupid?“ She said. "Having Amber lie to me? David? You taught my baby to lie to her mother? How could you?“ And she took a deep breath. "Well, I suppose it could be worse. I don't know exactly how right now, but I'm sure it could be worse. Damn her. I knew that bitch would try something. How could you just let them waltz into your life like that? They are like, like," Alice struggled for words. “Like prisoners of war or something. How could you just blindly trust them, David? After all these years? They have been programmed by that bitch. They'll do whatever she tells them to do." David sighed deeply but silently. He did not answer any of the rhetorical questions Alice was flinging at him. He knew better. "I warned you, David.“ Alice went on. "I told you this might happen. I told you to be careful. And what do you do? Open your arms and close your eyes. Leave all common sense behind. How could you be so blind, David?" David listened as Alice effectively started her rant all over again. He was willing to bet she had no idea she was beginning to repeat herself. It was a sign of just how angry and scared she was. Alice went to the police after her telephone lecture and gave her statement. The first wife, Margot, was crazy, on a good day. She'd spent years alienating the children against their father and had obviously been planning on this for years. The children would say
whatever Margot wanted them to say. They would probably even believe their own lies. Alice repeated the story to the prosecutor and David's attorney. She insisted they investigate further. That this was not the case of Second Wife Syndrome, or whatever they might want to call it. After all, she and David were divorced, mainly as a result of David's reactions to his natural children. She offered to testify if the circus actually got that far. David's attorney promised to keep her advised and asked her what, if any plans, she had for Amber. Alice informed the attorney that Amber loved her father and would like to stay with him, if that was possible. Amber would want to be there to protect her father from the lies. Alice allowed Amber to give statements, although it was iffy they would ever be heard by a judge. Together Amber and David's attorney fought with the state to get Amber back with her father. The attorney knew it would look good in court, if things got that far. Alice knew what was best for her daughter. One week after David was arrested, Alice personally delivered Amber home. She watched the tearful reunion with moist eyes. When Amber was settled in, Alice called the airlines and made arrangements to return to London. That night was spent cheerfully, under the circumstances. David allowed a phone call to London and Amber spoke with her little brothers, aged eight and four. Her littlest sister was only eighteen months and not very interested in conversation. David quickly thanked Peter for the support and the call ended. Alice left early the next morning. Further investigation quickly uncovered that Margot and her children were just about as bad as Alice had accused them of being. David's sons came forward unwillingly after pressure from their friends, and recanted their statements. They confessed to being put up to lying by their mother and sisters. They were threatened by their mother, they said. They were always threatened by their mother. All charges were dropped inside of two months. David did become more vigilant. He again buried himself in work and Amber. He began undoing the damage he caused by teaching her that lies of omission were not lies. He thanked his lucky stars that Alice did not try and take Amber away from him, as
would have been her right. He would not have been able to go on without Amber. His daughter. His only daughter. He never heard from his biological children again.