He walked in at five in the evening looking more tired than the previous day. He gave the room a quick scan and mumbled something incoherent before walking past them. He must have said… hi, I’ll be in the study don’t wait up …that’s what he said almost every other day so why would it be different today.
The tension in that house had been growing for months. It had then developed into an enstrangement. At first she had tried everything to keep him close. She’d researched all methods and even tried counselling when she was convinced she was the problem. Eventually she gave up. The war was lost. All she was doing was lining up skeletons.
She walked past the study and heard the frustrated noise from a keyboard being hit too hard. This ‘stranger’ she loved deeply had resorted to stay in that study as a fort from her. Stranger! That’s what he had become. Because they had been reduced to strangers whose only connections were a bunch of papers and genetics.
The idea of his touch brought her to tears. She longed for his touch. The type of touch that brought in comfort and sent away all doubts. Two years ago he was her bestfriend. He was the only option that really counted. When he told her she was beautiful she believed every word of it. She had put him on a throne, believing in him to a point of almost worship. She could have easily jumped of a plane if he told her she could fly.
How was it possible that the man who had made her win all the ‘my dad is better than yours’ contests was now the reason she cried herself to sleep?She was fifteen years old with a burden she hoped he could lift of. Part of her wanted to hate him for abandoning her but she couldn’t.because she still loved him deeply. He was all she had.
Clearly he wasn’t having dinner that night. So she packed up the food and put it in the fridge,cleared the kitchen,locked all doors, set her alarm and jumped into bed. She thought of writing another apology letter to him. After all she was the reason why ,two years ago,the love of his life had driven of the road to her untimely death.
‘Mom look out!’ she had yelled. Her mother veered of the road to avoid hitting a stray dog and next thing she knew she was in a black dress watching her mother’s body decend into a carefully dug out rectangular hole under the ground.
A heavy form of pain rose up and she broke letting out all the pain she had held in all day in school. She cried bitterly under her blankets. So lost in her pain that she didn’t hear him come into her room (for the first time since his wife had died). He sat cautiously on her bed and uncovered her. She was surprised by the look he had on his face. He must have been crying too but he had covered it up.
In his arms she felt safe. She knew this time her salvation was found and when he spoke his words stitched up all the wounds that had torn her soul apart.
” I’m really sorry .I took too long ; I’m here .We have to stick together cause it’s Just us now.”