SHORTS FROM THE SHELF – “Mysteries of the Phoenix” (Part 5)

SHORTS FROM THE SHELF features short serialized fiction by author Shannon Muir, administrator of SHANNON MUIR’S THE PULP AND MYSTERY SHELF, that may be later released as part of e-book or print collections. The story line featured currently is part one of “Mysteries of the Phoenix,” which will run Saturdays and Sundays over the next three weekends as part of a SUMMER SPECIAL run. This is Part Five.

Phoenix went on to explain to Geraldo and Lizza that her suspicions had been correct, but a lot of that wouldn’t be all pieced together until later.

 

After Moira came out from seeing Dawn, she awkwardly went up to Phoenix.

 

“I’m still not sure I can bring myself to calling you sister.”

 

“I understand, Moira. My father was the husband of your grandmother. That’s a lot for me to process, too. But that’s not your father’s fault. Why did you stay out of touch all summer?”

 

Moira hugged herself.

 

“I did some things I wasn’t proud of. The more I learn about this family, maybe it is in my genes.”

 

“I made some choices too, when I was just starting college. I thought I’d approached them wisely, but I didn’t. I think that happens to everyone, but being in a different country and culture made it harder.”

 

“The father wants to pay me off, to get me out of his life. All he wanted was a taste of an exotic Greek girl, not her baby.”

 

Phoenix realized her instincts were correct, but Romey would need to fill in the blanks later. She wanted to give the young woman a hug, to make her feel accepted, but knew Moira was far from being comfortable with that yet.

 

“So, the father is American?”

 

Moira nodded.

 

“And technically so am I, with my birth mother being an American citizen. There’s just so much to process. We need to come see our country together, someday. For now, though, I need to go home to Greece and figure out how I want to focus my life.”

 

Mario’s stepped out at that point. Phoenix heard a great sigh of sadness in Mario’s voice as she looked over at him, still completely entranced by his charms yet also seeing past them to the caring soul beneath. Though he fathered her half-sister, the two of them weren’t blood related and could pursue more if they wanted. She remembered how it felt holding his hand, and quickly tried to forget. 

 

Mario’s stepped up and put a fatherly arm around Moira.

 

“Thank you for your help in all this, Phoenix. I hope someday soon we see one another again.”

 

She watched father and daughter depart together, and then returned to her car and drove home to her family.

 

Yet, Phoenix also knew that the secret of Moira’s sister remained buried and yet might someday surface.