As Emily rushed to greet her stepfather Jack, she was bewildered beyond belief at what she saw: Jack was carrying a baby in his arms. Emily was so stunned that she couldn’t even speak. Jack looked distressed and frazzled. He said he would explain everything soon but first he needed to sleep. Emily was determined to get to the bottom of this story, even if it meant finding out some strange things about her stepfather.
Emily Was Suspicious
Emily’s parents had divorced when she was young and for many years, it was just her and her mom living together. But then one day, unexpectedly, Emily’s mom said she had met someone new and their relationship was getting serious. Emily was surprised and a bit apprehensive about this new man in her mom’s life.
Emily’s Mom Says To Give Him A Chance
Despite Emily’s cautious attitude towards her mom’s new boyfriend, her mom asked her to give the man a chance. So all three of them scheduled a time to have dinner together. Emily’s mom’s new boyfriend was named Rick, and he was incredibly nervous. He knew how important it was to make a good impression on Emily.
They All Meet For Dinner
Jack, Emily, and Emily’s mom all went out for dinner. To Emily’s surprise and Jack’s relief, it all went very well at first. It was obvious to Emily that her mom really cared about Jack, which was important to Emily. But then Jack said something Emily found a bit odd. Little did she know, this odd remark would forever change her life in ways she could never have predicted.
Jack Says Something Odd
During dinner, Jack told Emily that he spent a lot of time alone in Italy. Apparently, he had a family villa there that he liked to visit. Emily’s mom joked that she hoped to visit this villa herself someday but Jack seemed to brush off the suggestion. Emily found the exchange a bit unusual.
Emily Wonders Something
Emily wondered why Jack seemed dismissive of the idea of Emily’s mom accompanying him on a trip to Italy. She knew her mom loved to travel and would certainly enjoy taking trips to Italy. And if their relationship was serious at this point, why would Jack be reluctant to take Emily’s mom along?
Emily Forgets About The Issue
Despite this odd exchange, Emily overall had a great time at dinner and found herself liking Jack quite a bit. Ultimately, her mother’s happiness was the most important thing and there was no doubt that Emily’s mom was happy with Jack. As time went on, everything Emily heard about Jack seemed positive.
A Happy Announcement
It wasn’t too much longer before Emily received a phone call she had figured would come sooner or later: her mom told her Jack had proposed, and of course she’d said “yes.” Emily was happy for her mom and excited for the wedding. Emily was due to graduate college two weeks before her mom’s wedding and couldn’t wait for this new chapter of her life.
A Wonderful Wedding
Emily’s mom and Jack were married at a lovely ceremony in New Jersey, not far from where Emily had lived with her mom. It wasn’t an especially big wedding and Emily thought that made it a lot more fun. Everyone there was either a close family member or friend. They all celebrated late into the night.
A Strange Decision
Shortly after the wedding, Jack made a trip to Italy. This wasn’t a big surprise. Jack had said his family had a place there that he often liked to visit. But Emily thought it was strange that Jack didn’t bring Emily’s mom along with him, despite the fact they just got married. Emily wondered what it was about these trips to Italy that seemed so secretive.
Jack’s Mysterious Trip
Emily asked her mom why Jack wouldn’t invite Emily’s mom to Italy. Emily’s mom said she at first had been a little hurt but also tried to understand that sometimes people need a little alone time. She said she didn’t think there was anything especially nefarious going on, Jack just needed a little rest and relaxation.
Jack Returns Without Incident
Jack came back from Italy a couple weeks later and everything seemed to go back to normal. Emily still thought the trip was strange but her mom didn’t seem to mind too much. Ultimately, it was her mom’s business and Emily didn’t want to involve herself too much. But she still thought the trips were odd.
Emily Gets A Job
Now a recent college grad, Emily got a job working on cruise ships. She worked long hours and was often at sea, but the pay was great and being on the ships allowed her to see parts of the world she’d only dreamed of. She missed her mom terribly but felt better knowing Jack was back home keeping her mom company.
Emily Is Thriving
Once she got adjusted to her new life aboard cruise ships, Emily quickly started to thrive at work. She made a lot of friends onboard the ships. Everyone worked very hard but also played very hard. Emily had a lot of fun while also gaining a lot of valuable experience. She couldn’t have been happier with her new life and job.
A Distressing Call
Then one day, Emily got a strange call from her mom. Her mom said that Jack had left in the middle of the night in a panic. He said there was an emergency in Italy and needed to leave right away. Emily’s mom was distressed and despite her concern, Jack wouldn’t tell her exactly what was going on.
Emily Knew It
Emily was just as freaked out by this whole situation as her mom was. But a part of Emily thought “I knew something was up.” She’d always thought Jack’s mysterious solo trips to Italy were pretty strange. Now he was suddenly flying across the world in the middle of the night and couldn’t explain why?
Emily Consoles Her Mom
Emily tried her best to console her mom. But she couldn’t hide the fact that she wasn’t happy Jack was pulling this stunt. Now that Jack was married, there was even less justification for him to keep secrets. What kind of way was this to begin a marriage? Jack definitely had some explaining to do.
Jack Returns With a Shocking Surprise
Then Jack came back just as suddenly as he’d left. Emily’s mom rushed to the door, fearing that something terrible had happened. She thought maybe a relative of Jack’s had died. She hoped Jack would explain everything once he returned. She never could’ve predicted what happened next.
A Secret Revealed
As Emily’s mom rushed to greet Jack, she was bewildered beyond belief at what she saw: Jack was carrying a baby in his arms. Emily’s mom was so stunned she couldn’t even speak. Jack looked distressed and frazzled. He said he would explain everything soon but needed to sleep. Then he handed Emily’s mom the baby.
A Frantic Phone Call
While Jack slept in the other room, Emily’s mom made a frantic phone call to Emily. Emily woke up in the middle of the night to answer the call. Emily’s mom explained the situation. Emily was flabbergasted. Although she thought Jack might be up to something in Italy, she never could’ve imagined this.
Desperate For Help
Emily’s mom sounded desperate for help on the phone. But of course, there wasn’t much Emily could do. Emily was on a cruise ship halfway across the world. But Emily told her mom to be sure to get an explanation out of Jack. This whole thing was beyond unacceptable. Who did he think he was to pull this?
Emily’s Mom Makes A Decision
After trying her best to give her mom advice, Emily’s mom decided she would wake up Jack in a few hours if Jack didn’t wake up himself. And she promised Emily she would get an explanation out of him. Emily’s mom had at first been freaked out but now was seething with anger. She couldn’t believe Jack would do something like this.
Emily’s Mom Confronts Jack
A few hours went by. Just when Emily’s mom decided she’d waited long enough and was going to wake Jack up and demand an explanation, Jack came into the room. He immediately apologized and said he knew he owed an explanation. Then he launched into a story that bewildered Emily’s mom.
Jack said that his family had maintained a villa in Italy for many years. The villa was first built by his ancestors back in the 1800s. Over the years, he’d visited the villa many times. One unique thing about this villa was that it was located in the countryside, next to a convent. Jack and his family had become friendly with the nuns over the years.
Jack’s family supported the nuns from time to time, occasionally making donations or helping out with events. Because Jack’s family had owned their property for so long, they’d always believed in helping out the nuns whenever they could to be good neighbors. Then, Jack received some shocking news.
An Unexpected Baby
Jack was told by one of the older nuns that a younger nun had gotten pregnant. Worst of all, the father of the baby was a local priest. Obviously this was a huge scandal. The older nun had wanted to keep the whole thing under wraps. So she asked if Jack could help get the baby out of Italy.
Jack Is Speechless
Jack didn’t know what to do. How on earth could one just move someone else’s baby to another country? He didn’t know what to do but figured he would at least try to help the nuns since his family had always been close with them. Jack said he supposed he would give the baby to an adoption agency.
Jack Doesn’t Know What To Do Next
But Jack didn’t know how to navigate the whole issue of just having possession of someone else’s baby from another country. He told Emily’s mom that he thought the only solution might be to pretend the baby was his so that he could give it up for adoption in America. Emily’s mom was so shocked by this story that her jaw nearly hit the floor.
Emily Finds Out
The next day, Emily’s mom told the whole story to Emily. Emily was just as shocked as her mom. While Emily’s mom seemed at least a little relieved to finally have an explanation, Emily thought the whole story sounded pretty suspicious. How had Jack flown back to America with a baby that wasn’t his?!
Emily Doesn’t Believe The Story
Emily thought Jack was lying, pure and simple. Emily was determined to get to the bottom of this story. If it turned out Jack was telling the truth, Emily would be the first to admit he was right. But she strongly suspected his story didn’t add up. She didn’t know what Jack was hiding but she was convinced he was hiding something.
Emily Makes A Plan
In just a few weeks, Emily was scheduled to be on a cruise ship that would be making several stops in Italy. She was determined to find this alleged convent where Jack had rescued a baby and ask the nuns herself whether or not Jack’s story was true. But she needed help from her mom.
Emily’s Mom Gathers Info
Emily’s mom worked to gather as much info as she could about Jack’s family villa, which Jack rarely offered many details about. Eventually Emily’s mom found out that the villa was in a small town called Rispoli, about two hours outside of Rome. Emily looked the town up and made plans to go there.
Emily Arrives in Rome
A few weeks later, Emily arrived in Rome, armed with only a small amount of information about Jack’s family villa. She knew the town, which was a small old village. So she figured there could only be so many villas near a convent for her to check. She rented a car and headed out to discover the truth.
Emily Drives to Rispoli
Emily drove to the small town where Jack’s family villa was. The countryside was quite beautiful and Emily almost found herself enjoying the drive, despite the fact she was there to investigate her stepfather’s strange story. When she finally arrived in Rispoli, she found it to be a beautiful and quiet little village.
Emily Tries to Find the Convent
Emily figured it would be easier to find the convent than Jack’s villa. So she asked, in her best Italian, where she could find the local convent. The first local she asked had no idea what she was talking about. But the second person she asked had some helpful information.
She Gets An Address
The helpful local gave Emily an address. The local said the convent had been around for centuries and that it was a bit mysterious and isolated from the people in town. But the local knew for sure where this convent was. Emily typed the address into her GPS and saw the convent was only 15 minutes away.
She Drives to the Convent
Emily drove to the convent and was surprised to find that there didn’t seem to be any cars parked nearby. She approached the front door and knocked. No answer. Then she tried ringing the doorbell. Still no answer. She couldn’t believe that she might’ve come all this way only for nobody to be at the convent.
She Waits…And Waits
Emily waited for a whole hour. Then another hour. She didn’t hear or see anyone inside the convent. And nobody drove up to the entrance. She wondered where everyone was but figured there wasn’t much else she could do. The convent didn’t have a website and there was no phone number listed online.
Her Backup Plan
Emily decided she’d waited long enough at the convent and decided to try plan B. She would try to find Jack’s villa to see if anyone was there. She doubted anyone would be but figured she’d come this far and had to at least try. The problem was, she didn’t have an address. But she did know that Jack’s villa had to be nearby since he said he was neighbors with the convent.
She Searches for Jack’s Villa
So Emily started searching nearby to see if there was any way to find Jack’s villa. She was a little apprehensive about just knocking on people’s doors so she hoped maybe she could somehow find the villa without bothering anyone. Then, to her surprise, she found it very unexpectedly.
She Finds The Villa
It turns out Jack had been honest about at least one thing. His family had owned the villa for a very long time. So long, in fact, that Emily found a street with the same last name as Jack. Right on that small street sat a beautiful old home with two separate buildings. She figured this must be Jack’s villa.
Emily drove up to the villa and parked in its large courtyard area. In the middle was a fountain. In front of Emily was the main house. Off to her left was another second building. To Emily’s surprise, she found the front door of the main house was wide open. She walked up to it nervously.
Emily tried knocking on the old wooden doors but heard no response. So then she yelled out into the empty home “Ciao!” But still nobody answered. She thought it was very strange that the door was just open like this with no people or cars in sight. She wondered what to do next. Should she go inside?
She Goes Inside
Emily decided there was nothing else to do but cautiously go inside the home. After all, she was Jack’s daughter-in-law. She had some sort of right to be there. She wasn’t a complete stranger. As she walked inside, she was struck by how beautiful the home was. It was filled with religious art and sculptures. The furniture looked very old and very expensive.
She Searches the Home
Emily cautiously searched the home, periodically calling out “Ciao” to make sure nobody was around. While it was obvious that people had used the home relatively recently, she didn’t see any sign that someone might be there currently. After a while, she decided to give up and walked back out the front entrance.
The Second Building
Feeling disappointed that her long drive had been for nothing, Emily decided she’d tried as hard as she could to investigate Jack’s story. But then she saw the second smaller building. She might as well try that building too, she figured. So she walked over and pushed gently on the old wooden doors.
A Shocking Discovery
As Emily pushed open the doors, she was shocked at what she saw. The building was a chapel, with pews and a large crucifix on the wall above an altar. As she scanned the room, she glanced down and was startled to see a young woman asleep on one of the pews. She called out “Ciao” again and the young woman jumped awake, startled.
A Mysterious Young Woman
Emily only knew a little Italian but using her phone’s translation app, she was able to exchange some information with the young woman. She asked this mystery woman who she was and if she knew Jack and if she knew anything about a baby Jack had recently adopted. Then, to Emily’s shock, the mystery woman broke down in tears sobbing.
A Shocking Revelation
The young woman said she knew who Jack was and that it was true Jack had taken a baby back to America. But then she said something that shocked Emily to her core. The young woman said the baby was hers…and that Jack was the baby’s father. Emily was too stunned to speak for a moment.
Emily explained to the young woman that Jack had said the baby belonged to a nun from the convent nearby. The young woman said that was a lie. She and Jack were lovers and the baby was both of theirs. The young woman said she couldn’t raise a baby on her own so Jack took their baby back to America.
A Quick Resolution
Emily thanked the woman for her honesty. Then Emily called her mom and told her everything she’d just learned. Emily’s mom was shocked but had also suspected herself that something about Jack’s story didn’t add up. Emily’s mom confronted Jack and Jack admitted that he’d lied. The baby was his. Emily’s mom broke up with Jack on the spot. She was heartbroken to discover that her new husband was a liar and cheater, but she was grateful that her daughter had discovered the truth. After Emily’s mom separated from Jack, she eventually found a new partner who made her much happier.
The events of this story are entirely fictional and are products of the author’s imagination. Images included are meant for illustration purposes only. Any resemblance to actual events, places or persons, living or dead, are entirely coincidental.