full nameWilliam micah Arbor
date of birthOctober 16th, 1994
biased towardskaelyn brookes
Liam Arbor was born to parents who were never expecting the addition that a baby boy could bring. His father, Jonas Arbor, was a literature teacher, well into his forties and his mother had only just graduated from school, having once been a student of the professor herself. She was a free spirited artist and he liked everything to be organized and by the book. It was a true case of opposites attract and neither one of them saw themselves having children, especially not together. They married out of duty, thinking it would be best for the small boy who would bring both cheer and tears into the next eleven years of their life together. As it turns out, a man who has a weakness for younger woman doesn’t tend to stay around when she begins to develop wrinkles from laughter and circles beneath her eyes from long nights soothing terrors of the dark. He didn’t any longer care for Amelia when her stomach turned soft after she birthed their second child, Belle, when Liam was nine years old.
The next morning, his father was gone, but his possessions stayed behind haunting their home like an unfinished jigsaw puzzle, growing dusty with time. The two siblings grew to be dependent on one another, as Liam did his best to support them in an empty house that had once been their home. The one good thing he could ever say about the man who abandoned them was that alimony and child support checks were never late. They never had to move, despite that sometimes he wished they could. The whole place was covered his father’s fingerprints and sometimes the dark wooden walls seemed to house his ghost. Those years were when Liam became the man of the house. He had to wake up early in the morning to make breakfast for his sister and his mother, who could barely make it out of bed. He was the one who made sure that the bills made it from the mailbox to the downtown heating and power office, used the cash his mother left out to put food in the cupboards, and got his little sister to school on time. It was well into Liam’s teens, before Amelia began to recover from the crippling depression that the man she loved had left her in.
As Liam grew up, he got used to being relied on by his family. Despite that it was stressful to both care for his sister, his mother, and study for school, he managed. He put up a brave face and spent all of his free time with his chemistry books and homework that he had once had help learning. The words often scrambled themselves inside his brain, making it easy to become frustrated. However, he didn’t ask for help. His teachers sent home notes describing the teenager as ‘quiet, resigned and overly responsible’, but the notes ended up in the kitchen garbage, never read by the one parent that remained in his life, even if it was only by a thread.
When he graduated from high school, Liam wrote a letter to his Dad, asking him to come to the ceremony and mentioning his straight A’s, hoping that his old man would be proud of him. The only response he got was the letter being returned to his home address three days after he gave the valedictorian address. While his peers and teachers encouraged him to go to college, the days after highschool felt fuzzy. He moved out, despite his sister’s protests that she couldn’t live without her Champ. It was hard to hear that come from Belle. She’d barely left his side growing up and had sometimes attended school with him, despite that it broke several rules, but Liam knew deep inside that it was now or never. If he didn’t leave the house that had been his sunshine and his shadow for the past eighteen years, he never would and like his mother, he would die there. He wasn’t ready for 281 Beecham Drive to become a graveyard for three because of one man’s sin.
the chapters go on
That night, Liam and Arabella packed two suitcases and left Washington. It was time for them to make their own history. With only the bus tickets, backpacks, and five hundred in cash, he wasn’t sure how far they’d make it, but Liam knew that anything had to be better than where they started. Sometimes leaving can be the hardest thing you do, until it is done and only the future is ahead. Liam arrived in Evermore not only with a younger sibling high on his heels, but almost out of money and no place to stay. He was beginning to wonder if he’d made the wrong decision hauling everything to the other side of the country without anyone having his back. The first thing he had to do was find a job, but it was harder than he thought in a city that wasn’t always friendly to outsiders. There were exceptions, like the elderly woman who rented a room to them for far less than it was worth, but for the most part the people he met kept their heads down and their greetings to themselves. It became necessary to keep moving and even when adventures were small it helped keep his head above water.One morning, he woke up, ready to approach another nine to five when he noticed that his younger sister had slid out of bed before him. As he plodded out to the kitchen, it was empty, aside from the note that Arabella had gone out for groceries. He opened the cupboards only to find they were empty. He knew that his interview started in an hour but concern for Arabella walking alone in a big city that had yet to show them kindness was overshadowing logic. He had to take care of his family. It was all he’d been taught how to do. Liam reached for his coat and headed out the door. He didn’t have to walk very far before his younger sibling came skipping down the path with far more energy than he’d had in years. She always was the sunshine in his life and cahime with the news that she’d taken a job at a local grocery to contribute to finances. His own interview while working as a clerk for a law firm down the road went well and the lawyer promised him that if he kept his nose down and did the job, they could talk about Liam studying to become a paralegal. While he’d never had any interest in the law, he was excited simply because it meant he could start a new life: clean and away from where he’d begun.Starting over wasn’t easy. His job started at seven a.m. and Belle’s began at seven p.m. With their vastly differing schedules, they rarely saw one another, or any other friendly faces. It was only a day to day journey to keep the lights on and keep food in their stomachs. Without the thought of freedom in his mind, he probably wouldn’t have made it the six months it took to get them into a new apartment in a better area of town. However, the more he found himself proud of his work and the small furnishings and knick-knacks that began to decorate their home, the more Liam noticed that Arabella began to retreat into her room before, after, and even during work hours. She was missing shifts. He was able to support them, but it was her he was worried about. Her sunshine was disappearing, like everyone else in his family. He wasn’t ready to be the last one standing. While their relationship had never been one of mutual confidence, Liam didn’t have to push her to hear the story. Belle came in after one of her final shifts at the grocery, with tear stains on her face and smudges of ink and dirt down the white blouse she wore under her apron. It was obvious, with her arms crossed over her chest, but several of the buttons had been torn off. It was difficult for him to stay calm. He’d never exposed his anger, not to his sister, but it had taken its toll over the years on his mind, his body, and plenty of stuffed animals as a child.“What happened? Belle, who did this to you?” He handed her a blanket from the couch, only to watch her instantly hide under it like a scared animal in a storm. It took three hours, but inside them he heard a whispered name. One he wouldn’t ever forget.It was almost sunrise by the time Liam had calmed both Arabella and himself enough that he could walk out the door, hands buried deep in his pockets and get away from the situation he’d just been presented. Perhaps, his anger guided his feet through mere subconscious, or perhaps Liam wanted to punch someone, anyone who could represent the one thousand ways his life had gone wrong in the past ten years. It was seven a.m. by the time he looked up and realised that he’d reached Pinnacle Grocery, which was an odd name for such an out of the way place which ran sales on old fruit and had roach traps in the bathroom. He was glad their apartment was a thirty minute walk. At least they no longer lived here.Maybe that made him a snob. It was true that he’d been raised in relative wealth and been given an excellent education, but Arabella deserved better than a low-end job with slimy floors and leering co-workers. Liam’s fists curled together, as the shift change happened. Somehow, Liam was surprised. The manager wasn’t even a man. Probably not even eighteen and yet, he’d changed Belle’s life forever.“Are you George?” He crossed his arms over his chest, trying to appear intimidating. Perhaps, for the first time in his life, trying to look like his father. “I’m Arabella’s brother.”The teenager’s face drained of color as Liam’s fist collided with his teeth, not once, not twice, but repeatedly until finally when the younger kid was underneath him and begging him to stop did both relief and full control of his conscious self return to him. A small crowd had gathered and police sirens screamed for attention from down the road: it was only moments before it was over.What have I done. The one thought played in his head as he was questioned, and fingerprinted and thrown in a cell overnight, while they pondered what to do with him. The hours crawled by, until a burly policeman at the front rapped on the bars. “You have a visitor.”The only person he knew in the entire city was Arabella. How was he going to face her and tell her that she’d have to watch him be arraigned after everything else she just went through?To his surprise, it was a stranger. One of the many who had gathered around that morning was a certain Damien Verlac, part of the Ailward Guard. Their conversation was long as the valkyr inquired into his entry into the city, his past, and even more cautiously, how he’d wound up in a brutal fist fight. Liam’s shame was clear in his expression, over how he’d not managed to control his temper, but when he mentioned what had happened to his sister, he had to grip onto the bars of the cell as to not have his hands draw fists once again. It was clear that family meant a lot to him, despite his certain tendency for reckless behavior. The guard, who seemed to have some wisdom that Liam couldn’t equate to his years, was kinder than the officers had been and also explained how they’d questioned the teenager. What had happened to Arabella was out in the open and would have consequences, in time. Liam, however, was not off the hook. There wasn’t a city in the world where one could solve anything with violence.“Provided you train well, learn to respect your fellow species when due, and...get an edge on that reckless streak, I think you could make a fine guard one day. You throw quite a punch,” Damien said offering him a handshake, “Liam... is that your full name?”The door to the cell was unlocked and he stepped out, “Arbor,” He tilted his head, deciding to go with his mother’s maiden name. “Liam Arbor.”Training wasn’t easy. In fact, Liam nearly walked out three separate times, before remembering his agreement with Damien, but he did enjoy the guard. He and his sister were moved into the inner city, away from the early beginnings and grocery shop. Instead of working for six hours a day at a law firm, he began training his body and his mind for battle in a way that began to release him from the past, because he could now control his future and leave his demons behind. Despite that he didn’t enjoy it, it often involved talking through things that his parents. Afterwards, to calm himself down he spent long hours in tai chi classes or swimming in the lakes. He’d always wanted to protect his family, but felt so incapable of doing it on his own and being around others like him who wanted to care for others through being strong made Liam no longer feel alone. He had a home and a place of belonging and finally was able to let himself enjoy the simpler things in life. As for Arabella, her story is a separate one, but she found a job in a library and never looked back as well as enjoying the self-defense training her brother’s friends have taught her.