The phone rang just then. Mrs. McCarey answered the phone and it was their son, Jay.

"Hi, Mom. Heard the news about that man who committed suicide," Jay said.

"That's our neighbor, Jay. Only two weeks until Christmas left. Why would he do something like that before the holidays? He might have died!" Mrs. McCarey said.

"Does he talk at all?" Jay asked.

"Not much, more quiet than most people. He is more on the lone side. He needs help, Jay," Mrs. McCarey said.

"Does he talk at all?" Jay asked.

"Not much, more quiet than most people. He is more on the lone side. He needs help, Jay," Mrs. McCarey said.

"Get him help. Where's his doctor?" Jay asked.

"Out here."

"Tell his doctor about it."

"I'm sure he's heard."

"Okay."

"Hi, Fred," Mrs. McCarey said, hearing Fred pick up the phone.

"Hi."

"How was your flight to Milwaukee?" Mrs. McCarey asked him.

"Horrible. That shot did not work. I was screaming the whole flight," Kylie and Claudia heard him say on the phone to Mrs. McCarey.

"Don and I thought it did work to keep you quiet, Fred. Guess it didn't," she said.

"Fred, Mr. Groiske came by and wanted your rent money. I told him you were on holiday vacation, so we paid your rent money for you. Hope it's okay," Mrs. McCarey said.

"Go ahead. I can't pay rent like this when my brother's dead."

"We understand that, Fred. Don wants to say hello," she said.

Mr. McCarey took the phone from his wife and he and Fred spoke for a few minutes.

"Everything is in good hands at your apartment, Fred," Mr. McCarey said.

"I don't care about anything else, Mr. McCarey. I want my brother back," Kylie and Claudia heard him say.

"You can't have him back, Fred. You have to live without him for a while. Life is like that. He lived a long life with you. You two were inseparable. You are the only one left now. Time to look after yourself," Mr. McCarey said.

That was all the advice Mr. McCarey had for Fred.

"I want my brother back because I don't have anyone to solve my problems for me. Nobody can solve them but him!" Fred said to Mr. McCarey.

"Shirley and your family and I can help you, Fred. You know that," Mr. McCarey said.

"You don't have the answers like my brother did," Fred said.

"That's right, Fred, but everyone had different answers to different problems," Mr. McCarey told him.

"My brother knew how to handle me like some other people who didn't."

He talked to Mr. McCarey for a while longer, then they said good – bye and hung up.

Note: If you get confused about this first chapter, you can always go to 'A Christmas Story' for more explanation. Thanks for reading!