Ever since I was a child...
No...I can't start this story like this. You know how that sentence will end, and you'll laugh, no, you'll giggle at me, that giggle you always give me. And you'll know it's not true; I didn't feel like some part of me was missing. And no, mom never told me. I don't know why she never did, she must have had her reasons I guess, and I never got a chance to ask her. Because by the time I knew about you, it was too late, she was gone. But you already know about the accident. And you already know how I felt. And I don't feel like explaining it, because that's another story, and it's not interesting at all, really, just a car crash, another one of those accidents that make life suddenly change, or should I say end?
I already told you about all that, when you silently held my head in your arms and didn't say anything like always. I told you, trying to keep my voice down, but my choked down tears wouldn't let me, but you didn't say anything about that either. You didn't complain, you never complain, not with your voice at least. You just held my head close to your chest, and made me wonder what you were thinking of, were you thinking of me at that time? Maybe that was what made me feel so at ease, that you never spoke. I wondered for so long why you never spoke, it annoyed me, because I couldn't figure out why. I wanted to shake you and hit you so you'd at least beg me to stop, but you never did, at least not with words. I wish you would have just told me, I still can't forgive you for that. But I can't forgive myself either. You could have written it to me or something, I don't know, just let me know.
When grandma finally told me, I felt so pathetic. My worries and everything that had happened to me felt like nothing compared to yours and what had happened to you, it was as if you had suffered at least twice as much as me. And I couldn't forgive myself for letting you comfort me, for letting you hold my head in your thin arms, close to your calmly beating heart, when I was the one who was supposed to be comforting you in such a way.
It feels like such a cliché doesn't it? Writing this to you. How many people haven't already done things like this I wonder? People even get it published! Maybe you should give this to a publisher. I'm quite proud of my writing skills! And don't you dare laugh at me now! No... Don't publish it, okay? Don't even show it to grandma. I don't want anyone but you to see this, maybe it's another cliché, but I want only you to know this side of me. You can read it before you go to bed or something. But you're so good at hiding anyway, who am I to tell you these things? Like when I first went to that house...
It felt really weird. I mean, I came to grandma's, and I hadn't been there for about...10 years maybe? Though grandma sometimes came to us, but she stopped doing that sometime around...I don't really remember when exactly. It was just mom and Gerald driving over there, and they always said it wasn't needed for me to come, I should have known something was wrong when they started with it. They treated me as if I was still a little child and this was adult issues that they should protect me from. They told me I was a big guy now, and I should stay home and protect it while they went away for two or three days. I gave up on begging them the second time they did it, I just grunted and went up to my room, shutting the door hard behind me, and I tried to think out ways of getting back at them for it. Like not doing the dishes, annoy mom or Gerald somehow, even though I knew it was childish. It never struck me to question where they were going and what for, though I guess it should have.
Now when I think of it...Why didn't I ever call Gerald dad? Mom never told me to call him that, neither did Gerald. It was just natural to call him Gerald. And I never wondered whether he was my real dad or not. I wish he'd been...Gerald was good. I wish he'd been our real dad.
I never wondered why they did that either. Maybe I was a child after all, for not wondering. I just assumed it was some adult issue like they said. I mean, I did ask them, but I wasn't really curious.
But that summer, when they...died, and I was forced to live with grandma because I had no where else to go, I finally found out why.
When I got there my eyes were blood shot, and also the skin around my eyes was red. I remember that because I could barely see where I was walking. I just wanted to get to whatever room she would give me and flop on the bed to sleep this nightmare away.
She was really nice though. She was baking cookies when I came in with uncle. So grandmother typical, don't you think? She likes baking cookies, and she always makes up these weird cookies I've never even heard of. But they always taste good...well, most of the time at least.
So... As I was saying, we came in, and she of course kissed my cheek and greeted me, not saying anything about mom or Gerald. And then she just told my uncle to take me to my room. Nothing peculiar so far...
I flopped down on the bed. It was comfortable just like it should be at a grandmother's house. The blanket was handmade, and smelled like grandma I think, I'm not sure, but it smelled like someone and of laundry powder. The Sun always shun in my room, therefore it was rather warm that day too, and I fell asleep quickly, forgetting to unpack or even go down to eat the carefully made cookies and drink strawberry juice, which I'd been longing to do for a long time now. But she didn't come wake me up for that, though she came later to call me down for dinner. And the atmosphere was tense as to be expected when I hadn't seen her for so long. I didn't know what to say, even though I really wanted to talk to her. Because I loved grandma, and I really wanted us to be close like before, like we'd been when I was small. I didn't like it how we'd drifted apart and wanted to blame it on someone, but couldn't blame it on my parents since I felt so sorry for them and wouldn't be able to forgive myself if I did so. When we sat there quietly, with only the sound of the fork and knife against the porcelain to accompany us, I suddenly saw a shadow up the stairs, a blonde head peaking from the corner, a fiery gaze directed at me for a second, and then it all vanished. I stared at the spot it had been for a while, but when it didn't come back I decided that I'd just been imagining it, and went back to eating my food in silence and without giving the happenings a second thought.
I felt as if I was walking in a maze the whole time I spent at grandma's, or at least that was the state my brain was in, because it successfully blocked all thoughts from passing through it.
I envy how you can talk to her without even uttering a word, how she understands you. Between us there was just deafening silence. But your silence is filled with a million words.