In a small town in the middle of nowhere, there was never much excitement. It was a small farming town full of narrow roads and narrow minds. Everyone felt they had the perfect family. Every family tried keeping up with the next family to prove they were the best. Righteous and pure and no one ever did any wrong. Families would never work on Sundays; they would get up and go to church every week dressed in their very best. They were polite and sweet to each other at church only to go home and prepare their Sunday dinners and gossip about everyone in their church congregation.
It seemed like the perfect place to raise a family, no drugs, no crime, no violence but for teenagers in this town, it was boring and mind numbing. Kids couldn't wait to grow up and get away from this town where the only thing to do was gossip about one another. Many teens would spend their summers working on the farms or the one fast food restaurant in town so they save money, so as soon as they graduated school, they could move away to start a new life. Thye could pay to go to college, or just have enough money to move away and find new jobs; anything to get away from this place.
One summer, a young beautiful blond haired girl just getting ready to start her junior year in high school got a job at the fast food restaurant so she could start saving money for college. She was one of the many that couldn't wait to get out of this judgmental town. There was a boy one year older than her working at the restaurant. She knew him from school but because of the age difference, she had never talked to him before, until this summer working together. They found they both had the same hopes and dreams of getting out this town and having lives of their own.
It didn't take long working together that these two young kids started to fall in love, they began meeting after work so they could talk more and show their feeling for each other out of the public eye. Things between the two started to heat up more and more every time they would meet after work, until one night parked under the moonlight on an old dirt road they decided to lie down together in the bed of his old worn out truck and take their feelings to the next level. It was beautiful and magical and they felt no shame in their actions for they felt this was true love and they felt complete in each other's arms. This wouldn't be the last time the couple laid together. Every chance they got, they would find themselves in each other's arms, lying together in the bed of his truck.
The time had come for the couple to confess their love for each other to their parents; after all, they were young, they were scared, but most importantly they were expecting a baby. No surprise to the two, their parents did not take the news well. The neighbors were going to talk; they would get disrespectful looks and stares at church and on the streets. Their illusion of having a perfect family would be shattered. Their parents could not let this happen and insisted that this baby had no place in their lives, in this town or even in this world. Adoption was out of the question; the parents did not want anyone in town finding out about this and did not want an unwed, pregnant daughter ruining their reputation.
On a moonless night, the young man turned off the headlights to his truck as he drove down the gravel driveway to the young girl's home where she was waiting outside under the willow tree in the front yard. Two suitcases in hand, he helped her put them in the bed of his truck, and away they drove. She had left a letter on her pillow explaining why she and her boyfriend left and told her family goodbye forever. So with the money they had saved and a full tank of gas in the truck, they left the town with hearts full of love and leaving their families with their own shame and regret and to never see or talk to them again. Their families, yet heartbroken and sad about their children leaving, felt this was best and would find excuses for their children's absence when people would ask.
Of course, the couple had their struggles trying to make it on their own, but they had found an apartment in a town many, many miles away from their hometown. They were now in a town where no one knew them, and they didn't have to live up to the expectations of anyone. They both found jobs and were free to live their own lives and do as they pleased as her belly grew and grew with a new life that they couldn't wait to meet. They were both so excited and were now doing well enough to raise a baby on their own despite their parent's expectations of how two young kids could handle raising a child on their own.
They both worked hard in preparation for their new arrival and each night they would come home from work exhausted. The couple still found the strength to make dinner together then after their meal they would sit on the couch side by side with their feet up on the coffee table and watch old reruns of "I Love Lucy." This time was the couple's special time together and they found that watching this show could make them laugh and bring joy to their busy lives. They even started calling each other Lucy and Ricky as cute little nicknames for each other.
One night as the couple sat watching their show, the well overdue pregnant girl went into labor. She let out a cry of pain and knew that it was time to go to the hospital. Their exhaustion was quickly turned to excitement and panic as they rushed to get ready to head to the hospital. Once there, the baby came quickly. Only a couple of hours after she had gone into labor, she was holding her brand new perfect baby boy. "Well, what do you think we should name him, Ricky?" She asked the new father. "Oh, Lucy! He's our little Ricky." He said. She agreed that the name was perfect and with that, they had their Little Ricky.
After a couple of years, things were just getting better and better for the happy family. Little Ricky's dad had moved up in the company he was working for and now made enough money that Ricky's mom could quit her job and stay at home to take care of him. The couple knew they had the perfect family and didn't feel they needed any more children, In their eyes, they had the perfect child. The couple finally bought their forever home where they would be happy and content. After all this time, they finally decided to make their family official and finally became husband and wife.
Up until the time Little Ricky was fifteen years old, his life seemed great. He didn't have any real friends and not much of a social life, but he had everything he wanted at home. His parents loved him and gave him more than he ever wanted, that is until one day, things started to change completely. He no longer felt that he had a connection with his dad. His dad just seemed to ignore him and was very cold toward him. Not knowing why, he didn't ask any questions and with each day grew more and more depressed. His mom still showed how much she loved him, and he was grateful for that, but he couldn't help but wonder why he seemed like such a disappointment to his dad.
On Ricky's sixteenth birthday, he came home from school and his mom had baked him a cake and greeted him with a big hug and a "happy birthday." Rick was really enjoying spending the time with his mom until his dad came home and didn't even acknowledge Rick or that it was his birthday. Feeling hurt and sad, Rick decided to go for a walk. Down the street a ways, he sat on a bench along the side of the sidewalk and put his face in the palm of his hands and began to cry. After crying for a few minutes, he felt a hand slowly massaging his back. He looked up to find an old lady sitting beside him trying to comfort him. She said, "I don't mean to scare you but I want to talk to you for a moment. I know you'll think that I'm crazy and that is okay but please just hear what I have to say. I know you are going through a hard time right now and I will tell you that things are going to get extremely worse. When things get bad, you must not give up, keep on going. There will be a light at the end of the tunnel. Sometimes we have to go through an extreme amount of pain and suffering to get to the good things in life. I promise you that if you get through these bad times, you are going to find all the happiness that you could ever dream of, in fact, more happiness than you could ever dream of. When you find that happiness and the pain and suffering starts to end, nothing is going to make sense. You will wonder how you got to where you are and how such amazing things could happen but when you are given a gift of a happy life, don't ask questions, just learn to accept it and be thankful for it and enjoy it. Remember the pain will end and a new life will begin. You will be blessed with happiness for enduring the pain that you are going to go through. I wish you didn't have to go through the pain but I can't change it, I can only tell you how it will be and hope that you'll listen to my advice. Bless you, child." As Rick sat there listening to the old lady's words, he was in shock and confused and couldn't even speak. He heard a car horn honk behind him and startled, he quickly turned his head to see what was going on. Realizing it was nothing to be concerned about, he turned his head back to look at the woman only to find that she was gone. Still confused by what had just happened, he wiped his tears away and headed back home.
6:30 am, Rick's alarm clock started beeping. He reaches over and presses the snooze button and drifts off back to sleep for another 9 minutes. Beep! Beep! Beep! Again he reaches over and turns off the alarm. Eyes still closed in his dark room, his hand fumbled around on the nightstand until he finally feels his cell phone, he feels his way down to the bottom of the phone and unplugs the charger. Still lying in bed, he looks at his phone and unlocks the screen. The bright light from the phone makes him immediately shut his eyes. Slowly he starts to open his eyes, squinting so his eyes can adjust to the light. He finds his Facebook app and opens it. Forgetting what day it was, he quickly was reminded by some notifications from a couple of family members and some online friends that it was his 17th birthday. Even though the posts on his page were pretty short and straight to the point, saying happy birthday, he still smiled a bit knowing that people still took time out of their morning to wish him a happy birthday. Remembering now that it was his birthday, that gave him the motivation that he needed to get out of bed.
Rick sat up and sat on the side of the bed. He yawned and stretched his arms up above his head, rubbed his eyes and proceeded to stand up. Stumbling through the somewhat still dark room, he worked his way to the bedroom door and walked out into the hallway. He walked to the edge of the stairs and could smell his birthday pancakes that his mom was cooking for him downstairs. His birthday was the only time his mom had cooked for him before he went to school. No cold cereal, no oatmeal, no toast or bagels, none of the boring stuff that he usually eats before school. He turned around and walked back into the bathroom to take his morning shower. While showering, Rick was starting to wake up a little more and quietly started singing the happy birthday song to himself. After he turned off the shower and stepped out and dried off, he wiped the steam from the mirror to see his handsome reflection. Looking at his dark brown hair and his brown eyes in the mirror, he gave himself a wink and a little smile and said "Happy birthday, handsome!" Rick wasn't conceded and didn't have a lot of self-confidence, but it was his birthday and thought he deserved a little bit of a self-boost of confidence for the day.
Wrapped in his towel, Rick walked back to his room and opened the closet door to pick out a shirt. He went to the dresser and picked out his socks, underwear and pants, dropped the towel and began to get dressed. Rick sat on the edge of the bed and reached down to put on his shoes. He walked to the full-length mirror hanging on the back of his bedroom door to make sure he looked alright. He softly whispered to his reflection, "Looking good. It's going to be a great day!" He walked out of the room and down the hall to the edge of the stairs and took a deep breath and started down the stairs.
"There's my little man! happy birthday!" Rick's mom said as he walked into the kitchen. "Thank you!" Rick said with a smile on his face as he sat down at the table. His mom brought a plate of pancakes to the table and sat them down in front of him and gave him a kiss on the cheek. As Rick was pouring syrup over his pancakes, he looked across the table to see his dad sitting there with his nose in the morning paper and a cup of coffee sitting there on the table in front of him. "Good morning dad," Rick said. Not even looking away from the paper, he just let out a little groan. "Don't you have something to say to your son this morning?" Rick's mom asked. "Should I have something to say?" Rick's dad asked. "How about a happy birthday?" she replied. "You already told him, why should I have to also?" Rick's dad said with an annoyed look on his face. "Never mind, happy birthday from both of us." Rick's mom said as she stood behind Rick with her hands on his shoulders softly rubbing them. "Thank you, MOM!" Rick said, making it clear that he was only thanking her. His mom walked over to the sink, looked back and gave Rick a little smile. The morning light was shining through the kitchen window and lit up her blond hair and gave off a light glow around her. Rick thought to himself that his mom truly was his angel. His dad hadn't been a very caring man for awhile now and didn't seem to care if Rick existed at all. Rick felt very blessed that he had his mom.
After finishing his pancakes, Rick placed his dishes in the sink and gave his mom a hug and a kiss on the cheek and thanked her again. She told him to have a happy birthday, a great day at school and she would see him after school and she would make him a great birthday dinner and they would have cake and ice cream for dessert. He smiled and thanked her again. He grabbed his backpack sitting next to the couch in the living room and headed out the door to walk to school.
Rick was a quiet kid in school. He got along with everyone. He didn't have any enemies, but he really didn't have any friends either. No one had any problems with him, in fact, people liked him, but he was careful not to get too close to anyone, he was nervous about making friends. As he got to school and walked down the hallway toward his locker, a couple of kids that he was only friends with online wished him a happy birthday, and he just thanked them as he walked alone to his locker. Rick opened his locker and placed his backpack inside and took his science book out of the backpack and shut his locker. He stopped by the drinking fountain and got a drink before heading to class. When he walked into the classroom, one of the girls on the front row smiled at Rick and said "happy birthday." He thanked her and smiled back and disappeared to his seat in the back of the room.
Although Rick was happy with the attention that he had gotten from the few people that wished him a happy birthday, he knew that they were just being friendly and only knew that it was his birthday because of social media, none the less, it still made his heart a little happy. During the class, Rick just sat and listened and took notes from the lesson that the teacher was giving, never participating in answering any questions the teacher asked the class. Rick was a good student; he got all A's, and B's in his classes but like always never liked drawing too much attention to himself, he just kept to himself and did his work like he was supposed to. The teacher's never picked him out to answer any questions or solve any problems in front of the class. They knew that he was paying attention and got good grades, so there was never any need to give him any extra attention which worked out perfect for Rick.
At lunch time, Rick did as he always did. He would go to the lunch room and get his food. He would find a table with a few of the other "loner" kids. There never was much conversation among these kids other than the occasional small talk about the weather, sports, current events or just any small talk that someone would bring up just to break up the awkward silence at the table. When he would finish, he would quietly get up and return his lunch tray and head to his locker to get his algebra book for his next class. Not having any close friends to hang out with for the rest of the lunch period, he would go to the classroom and sit there alone catching up on homework until the class started. It seems so sad for a kid to be alone like this during school but it is the way that he wanted it and liked it. Rick was likeable and friendly and could have lots of friends if he wanted, and he was handsome enough that he could have just about any girlfriend that he wanted if he would ask one of them. The girls always seemed to smile at him and give him looks as if they were interested in him but everyone knew that he kept to himself so no one would make the first move to talk to him; again, it worked for Rick. No need for anyone to get too close to him.
Luckily Rick's last class of the day was swimming. He was always the first one to get to the locker room and change into his swimsuit as fast as he could and be the first one in the pool. Once everyone was in the pool, they got ten minutes of free time to play around in the water before the blow of the coach's whistle. When the coach would blow his whistle, everyone would get out of the pool and line up at the edge before jumping back into the water to take their turn swimming laps. At the end of laps, if there was any time left, it would be free time again. Rick would swim to the corner of the pool farthest away from the locker room entrance and just hang out there, usually with his back against the edge of the pool, arms up on the sides and gently kicking his legs in the water to keep himself afloat. When the coach would blow his whistle for everyone to get out, everyone would hurry to the showers. Rick slowly took his time swimming across the pool and be the last one into the locker room and the showers. Rick had nothing to be ashamed of and wasn't embarrassed of his body but still he chose to shower while wearing his swimsuit. He made sure that he was slow to be the last one out of the shower and to get dressed, after all, it was the last class of the day. Rick was in no hurry to get to another class, and he walked home from school, and he didn't have to rush to catch a bus like a lot of the other kids had to. Once the noise from all the kids in the locker room started to die down, Rick knew that everyone was gone, that's when he would turn off the water, dry off and get dressed.
After getting dressed, Rick wrapped up his swimsuit in his towel and locked it up in his locker. As he walked out into the hallway of the school, it was already quiet except for a few straggling students that hadn't left yet. Rick went to his locker, placed his books in his backpack, threw it over his right shoulder, shut his locker door and headed toward the door. As he was approaching the door to go home, Sara, a cute blond girl was standing against the wall watching Rick walk down the hall toward her. "Happy birthday, Rick!" Sara said. "Thank you!" Rick said with a smile on his face. "How come you haven't gone home yet?" Rick asked. "I was hoping that I would see you before you left. I wanted to wish you a happy birthday and ask if you would want to go out with me sometime?" Sara asked. "I appreciate the offer," Rick said. "I'm really not interested right now. You really are a cute girl and seem very sweet, but I really don't have the time right now." Sara said, "It doesn't have to be right now, just some time." Rick replied, "I know, I just don't think it's a good time. My life is too busy these days. Thank you again, though. I'll see you later." Even though Rick had plenty of extra time, he wasn't interested and didn't want to hurt her feelings. Rick walked away from Sara, and when he got to the door, he turned around and pushed the door open with his backpack that was hanging from his shoulder and noticed Sara still standing against the wall watching him. He just smiled and waved and turned back around and out the door.
As Rick got home from school, he walked into the house expecting to see his mom. It was kind of strange to him that she wasn't home. He expected to smell the fresh birthday cake that she always bakes every year as he walked through the door. He walked into the kitchen and there on the counter was a cake pan and ingredients to make a cake but nothing had been mixed together yet. Rick put his backpack on the table and dug in the side pocket to find his cell phone. He sent his mom a text message asking where she was. Rick went to the fridge and grabbed a bottle of water then sat down at the table to start on his homework. After about 20 minutes, his mom still hadn't replied to his text message so he thought he would just try to call her. Rick's mom's cell phone went straight to voicemail which was weird. She always has her phone turned on and charged. He tried a couple more times and still the same thing, straight to voice mail. He started to dial his dad's number on his phone. Maybe he would know where she was but Rick thought that his dad probably wouldn't know and probably wouldn't even care, so there was really no point in bothering him. He just put his phone back down and continued with his homework.
6:30 pm. Rick woke up on the couch. After he had got done doing his homework, he decided he would close his eyes for a few minutes on the couch while he waited for his mom to get home. Rick didn't realize how tired he was until he decided to rest on the couch. He had been asleep for about an hour and a half when he finally woke up. After getting his mind together, he rubbed his eyes and sat up on the couch immediately reaching for his phone lying on the coffee table. He looked at his phone, still no response to his text message from earlier and no missed calls. He tried calling his mom again and the same as earlier, it just went straight to her voice mail. He got up from the couch and walked into the kitchen and found everything just the same as it was when he had got home from school. He wandered through the house slowly looking around for any signs of where she might have gone. As he was looking around the house, it came to his mind that his dad should have been home at least a half of an hour ago. He looked in the bathroom and his parent's bedroom thinking maybe he just hadn't heard his dad when he came home. There was no sign of either one of his parents. Rick walked upstairs and looked in all the rooms up there. Still no sign. He walked down the stairs and opened the front door. He looked at the empty driveway where his parent's cars should be and wondered where his parents were. Something just didn't seem right. A thousand things were going through Rick's mind as he was starting to get worried.
Rick tried to avoid his dad at all cost. He didn't know what ever happened to his dad to make him so cold and unfeeling and uncaring and at this point in Rick's life, he really didn't care anymore. He got tired a long time ago of trying to get his dad to pay attention to him and trying to get any kind of approval from his dad. Even though Rick really didn't want to, he was worried, so he dialed his dad's number on his cell phone and hesitated for a moment before pressing the send button. Rick's heart started to race a little bit and his hands were slightly trembling as he heard the first ring going through to his dad's cell phone. After the fourth ring, Rick's dad answered. "I can't think of you right now, I can't talk to you right now and I sure as hell can't see you right now or else I will end up killing you!" Those are the words that Rick heard coming from his dad on the other end of the call just before his dad hung up the phone on him. Rick was in shock and had no idea what he did to make his dad so angry. In shock, Rick just sat there for a moment before tears started to fill up in his eyes. He tried calling his mom's number again and got the same thing once again, it went straight to her voice mail. He hadn't left any messages on her voice mail before but this time, when he heard his mom's voice saying to leave a message, he started to cry more heavily. "Mom, please call me! Please answer your phone! Please, just let me know what's going on!" Rick took a couple of ragged breaths and hung up the phone. Rick wondered, should he call his dad back and try to get more answers or just leave him alone? He wasn't sure what to do and was so confused. After a few minutes, his mind was starting to make him crazy with worry and confusion. By this time, he wasn't just scared and confused he was getting angry and with a lot more confidence this time and no more hesitation, he called his dad back. After a couple of rings, his dad answered. "Stop calling; I already told you what I have to say for now!" Rick said, "I will not stop calling until you tell me what in the hell is going on! Where are you and where is my mom? Actually, I don't give a shit where you are, just tell me where mom is?" "You are never going to see your mom again." Rick's dad said. Rick raising his voice even more, "What do you mean? What have you done with her? What is going on?" Rick's dad in an angry voice replied, "What I did with her? What I did with her? Oh no, It's not what I did with her, it's what you did to her." Rick crying said, "I have no idea what you are talking about, I haven't seen her since this morning; that's the last time I talked to her. I don't even know where she is." Before hanging up on his son again, Rick's dad said, "Like I said before, I can't talk to you right now. I'll be home later, and if you know what's good for you, you'll be in your room when I get home, and I won't see you for the rest of the night." Rick tried calling his dad back again, and it went straight to voicemail. His dad had turned off his phone so Rick couldn't reach him anymore. Rick tried again and again with the same result every time. Rick set the phone back on the coffee table and placed his face into the palm of his hands and uncontrollably sobbed not knowing what was going on.
After about 20 minutes of sobbing and trying to wrap his head around what had just happened he grabbed his phone and started to look through his contacts. As he scrolled through the names, he couldn't find one person that he could call and ask if they knew what was going on. His parents both had left their families so long ago that Rick didn't have any extended family that he could call and try to get some answers. He didn't have any other choice, and he was scared for himself and his mom so he called the Police. He told the police dispatch that something weird was going on and explained the phone conversation he had with his dad and that his mom was missing. The lady on the phone said that she would have an officer come out to investigate as soon as possible.
About a half an hour had passed before the police officer finally showed up at Rick's house. It seemed like an eternity for Rick because he was so anxious for some answers and he was just starting to confuse himself more and more with all the thoughts and different scenarios that he was coming up with in his head. When the officer knocked on the door, it was the first time since Rick had got home from school that he was finally able to get a sigh of relief. Maybe the officer could get some answers. The officer came into the house and first off asked if Rick was alright. Rick told him that he was not alright and proceeded to tell the officer about what was going on. Before Rick got too far into the story, the officer stopped him. "Wait, hold up. I already know what is going on. I talked with your dad awhile ago. There really isn't much I can do for you now. I just took the call from dispatch so I could stop by and make sure that you are physically alright." Rick feeling puzzled asked, "What's going on? Why does everyone know what's going on except for me?" The officer told Rick that his dad had asked for the police not to talk to him about what is going on and that he would talk to him when he got home. He wanted to tell him what was going on in his own way and when he was ready. He didn't want him finding out from a stranger. "Find out what?" Rick yelled. "Is my mom alright or not? I have to know; I deserve to know!" "I'm sorry son." The officer said. "I can't tell you anything. Just try to stay calm. Watch some television, do your homework or something to keep yourself busy and keep your mind off things until your dad gets home." Rick just shook his head slowly agreeing to do what the officer had said even though he was full of rage and anger inside. The officer apologized to Rick once more before letting himself out and leaving Rick even more confused than before.
Rick was so upset and sick to his stomach and feeling emotions that he had never even felt before and was so confused. His head was pounding and he was light-headed and dizzy. His whole world seemed to be spinning out of control. The room was starting to spin and he felt like he was going to throw up and pass out. He shuffled his feet to move him towards the stairs. Using his hands to help him crawl up the stairs like a dog, he slowly climbed to the top where he then picked himself up. Using his hand against the wall to help him stay standing, he worked his way down the hall to his bedroom. He closed the door behind him and stumbled to his bed and fell onto it where he curled up into a ball and just cried and cried until he finally fell asleep.
It was about 1:00 am when Rick woke up after crying himself to sleep. He was still in shock and a daze and he felt like he had been dreaming. He hoped to himself that it all had been a dream, after all, he still was very unclear on what was going on, and nothing seemed to add up just like when you wake up from a very puzzling dream, and you are trying to put everything together in your head. After collecting his thoughts for a few moments, he started to feel the aching in his heart and knew that he had not dreamed everything that had happened. He slowly and quietly sat himself up in bed not knowing if his dad had come home yet. He quietly got out of bed and walked slowly through the dark to his bedroom door. He slowly turned the knob and opened the door just a crack. He could see the light from the living room downstairs that he had left on when he went upstairs but still was unsure if his dad was there. He opened the door just wide enough for him to fit his body through the doorway. He slowly walked down the hall to the edge of the stairs listening for any signs that his dad might be home. After a few moments, he slowly started to walk down the stairs. The fifth step down as he put his weight on the stair, it made a loud creak. He froze and waited to hear his dad's voice. After a few seconds of not hearing anything, he proceeded down the stairs until he reached the bottom. He quietly walked to the front door and slowly opened the door to look out on the empty driveway once again. He felt a sigh of relief that his dad was not home but then started to feel the panic again of not knowing what was going on and what was going to happen when his dad did get home.
Rick went to the couch and sat down and noticed his phone sitting there on the coffee table where he had left it earlier. He looked at it and still had no new text messages and no missed calls. Knowing that it would still be the same as before, he called his mom's cell phone again, just to hear it go straight to voicemail. He listened as he heard her voice saying that she can't answer the phone right now and to leave a message. He knew something was terribly wrong and even though it broke his heart, it still brought some comfort to him just to hear her voice. When he heard the beep, he hung up and right away dialed the number again just to hear her voice again. He did this three more times before it just broke his heart too much that he couldn't listen anymore. He sat the phone back down on the table and just stared blankly at the wall.
About 15 minutes had passed by when he saw the lights of a car shine on the wall from a car pulling in the driveway. Rick's heart started to race, and his whole body was starting to tremble. He knew his dad was home and had no idea of what to expect. His dad had told him that he better be in his room when he got home, but Rick needed some answers and wasn't going to let his dad intimidate him. He had to know, and he was going to get some answers one way or another.
As Rick's dad's key turned in the door lock and the door opened, Rick was more scared than he had ever been in his whole life. The door flung open and Rick saw a look in his dad's eyes that he had never seen before. His eyes were red and angry, full of hate and pain. He knew his dad had been crying, something he had never seen him do before but he could tell he had been crying by the redness and swelling in his eyes because it's the same thing that happens to Rick when he cries, and it's how Rick's eyes looked right now.
"I told you that you better be in your room when I get home." Rick's dad said with anger in his voice. "I was in my room until just a little while ago," Rick said. Rick looked down at his dad's hand and in his hand, he was holding a brown paper bag. At the top of the bag, sticking out was the long neck of a whiskey bottle. Rick had never seen his dad drink before and right away this was cause for more concern for Rick. "You should probably get back up to your room right now because I'm not stable enough to deal with you right now." His dad said. Rick replied, "I know something terrible is going on, I've never seen you drink before, as much as I know you don't like me, even though I don't know why, you have never treated me the way you have treated me tonight. You are treating me worse than anyone would treat their own worst enemy. I need to know what's going on; I have to know." "Go to your room, NOW!" Yelled his dad. Rick stood up and yelled back. "NO! Give me some damn answers now. I'm not backing down until you tell me what is going on!" Rick's dad threw his bottle across the room hitting the television screen causing it to shatter; he then immediately rushed toward Rick grabbing him by the throat pushing him all the way back to the wall until Rick's back smacked against the wall. With a tight grip on Rick's throat, with the hurt and hate still in his red, swollen eyes, Rick's dad started to say angrily, "You want to know what's going on? I'll tell you what's going on! You, my little disappointment in life, you worthless piece of shit, only your mother thought that you were worth celebrating your birthday, she's the only one that loved you enough to try and make your birthday special. If you weren't in my life, I would still have her in my life. She is dead! She is gone forever, and it's all because of you. Apparently, you sent her a text message asking where she was. Your mother was killed by a pickup truck when it smashed into the side of her car. Do you know how that happened? Do you? When they pulled her out of the car, she was holding her cell phone in her hand. She was texting you! The message said, "I had to go to the store to get eggs to make your cake, be home soon." She never had a chance to hit the send button before the distraction, the distraction that you caused that caused her to run a red light which caused her to be struck by the truck, the truck that killed her instantly." Rick's face was starting to turn blue; his dad had such a tight grip on his throat and all of his anger was making him squeeze tighter. At first, Rick was scared for his life but with what his dad was telling him, he was starting to pray that his dad would finish the job and just kill him, which he almost did. Rick's dad started to loosen his grip and say, " I wish I could just kill you now, I want to so bad but I can't. I hope you can live with yourself knowing that you killed your mother and God help me that I can live with you; seeing your face every day knowing that you took the one thing in the world that meant anything and everythig to me away. I need you gone now, out of my sight. Go to your room." Rick didn't waste any time getting out of there. He grabbed his phone off the coffee table and went straight up to his room and lied down on the bed in total disbelief and just started to cry, crying harder than he had ever cried in his life. How could he live with himself now but even more importantly he thought to himself, how was he going to live without his mom; the woman that he considered his angel that is now a real angel? "Mom, I'm so sorry. Please forgive me. Please help me, Please come back!" This is what Rick cried out over and over again until his already sore throat hurt so bad that he could not cry out anymore. For the next couple of hours, Rick just lied there and cried and cried until he finally fell asleep and was unconscious to all the pain.
The next morning, Rick woke up after about four hours of sleep. His head was aching but nowhere near as bad as his heart was aching. He was still in disbelief from the night before and still couldn't believe that his mom was dead. Even though his dad had blamed him for his mother's death, Rick knew deep down in his heart that it wasn't his fault. He would never do anything to harm his mother. He had no idea that she was driving and even if he did, he never thought that she would use her phone while she was driving. Although he felt worse about his mom's death than he had ever felt about anything in his whole life, he still knew that it wasn't his fault, it was just a huge accident. It was one that would haunt him the rest of his life but felt down deep inside that his mom would forgive him; his dad on the other hand, Rick knew that he would never forgive him. Still not knowing why, Rick knew that his dad had a problem with him and just did not like him so there's no way that things would ever get better with his dad now.
Rick worked up the nerve to get out of bed. Still wearing the same clothes from the night before, he cautiously walked down the stairs. Everything was quiet and still and there was an eerie feeling througout the house. He walked to his parent's bedroom and looked through the partially opened bedroom door and could see his dad still passed out and still in his clothes face down on the bed. He didn't want to wake up the monster that he saw lying there on the bed, so he quietly closed the door so if he made any noise, it wouldn't wake up his dad. Rick went the to cupboard and grabbed a box of cereal, a bowl, a spoon and grabbed the milk out of the fridge. He sat down at the table placing the items on the table. Rick opened the box of cereal and sat it down on the table and just stared at it. He wasn't even hungry; he just grabbed the cereal out of habit; the same thing he does every morning. He looked over at the counter and seen all the items sitting there that his mom had put out preparing to bake him his cake. He just stared blankly at the items for what seemed like forever. Finally, he got up from the table and put all of his breakfast items away without eating. He walked to the counter and silently the tears started to flow from his eyes as he put the items away that his mom had set out the day before.
Rick knowing that he wasn't going to school today was at a loss of what to do next. He somberly walked back up the stairs into his bedroom where he undressed and walked naked down the hall to the bathroom to take a shower. Every minute that passed seemed like an hour. He was in a daze and felt as if he were moving in slow motion as he got into the shower and washed himself off. Feeling dizzy and heartbroken, he sat down at the bottom of the bathtub and just let the hot water shower down on him and wash his tears away. He felt like he could sit there forever and never move from that spot but alas, the hot water started to run out, and the once warm, comforting water began to get colder and colder and he knew it was time to get out. He got out of the shower and went through the normal routine of combing his hair, brushing his teeth and putting on his deodorant. He wrapped his towel around himself and went to his bedroom to get dressed. By the time he had gotten dressed, he was still unsure what to do next so he did nothing. He stood and stared at his bed for a few moments and just crawled on top of the bed, face down in his pillow and silently once again, he began to cry. Rick cried and cried until he once again was asleep.
After a couple of hours had passed, Rick was awakened by sounds coming from downstairs. He knew his dad was awake. Working up enough nerve, Rick decided to face his dad and go downstairs. When he got to the bottom of the stairs, he heard his dad's shower turn on. Rick walked into the kitchen and seen that his dad had started a pot of coffee brewing but had not yet had any. Rick walked near the bathroom where his dad was showering and could hear his dad crying in the shower just as Rick had done a couple of hours earlier. Rick went to the living room and sat down in the reclining chair and waited for his dad to be done. What was going to happen next, Rick didn't know. He was terrified about how his dad was going to act, but he couldn't hide from him forever.
When the water finally shut off, Rick was getting very nervous. He listened as he heard his dad going through his closet and dresser drawers picking out the clothes he was going to wear. After his dad was dressed and ready, Rick watched from the living room as his dad walked out of the bedroom and into the kitchen to prepare his cup of coffee. His dad took a sip of his coffee and sat it down on the table where he always sits. He stood there for a moment looking at the spot where Rick's mom always sat his morning paper. He watched his dad wipe a tear from his eye and turned to walk through the living room. It was then that his dad seen Rick sitting in the living room. Rick's dad stopped and just glared into Rick's eyes. He then walked across the living room and out the front door to fetch the morning newspaper for himself. Not saying a word to each other, his dad walked back to the kitchen and sat down to read his morning paper and have his coffee like he always does.
When his dad finished his coffee, he went to the bathroom to brush his teeth. He came back to the kitchen and grabbed his keys from the counter and started toward the front door. "Dad, what do we need to do?" Rick asked. "You don't need to do anything but stay away from me as much as possible; I have to go make arrangements for your mother's funeral." Rick's dad said in an angry tone. Rick asked, "What can I do to help? I want to go." His dad said, "I already told you what I want you to do so you better do it." With that, his dad walked out the front door slamming it behind him. Rick's tears started to fall again, and he stood up and walked to the front window where he could see his dad pulling out onto the street. Rick shouted as he was starting to cry hysterically, "I hate you! I hate you! Why couldn't you have been the one to die?" He walked over and fell onto his stomach on the couch and cried some more.
Rick Spent the next couple of days up in his room. His dad hadn't gone back to work, and Rick hadn't been back to school. The only time he came downstairs was to get a snack and late at night when his dad was sleeping, he would sneak downstairs to get something else to eat. People from the neighborhood had brought over a lot of food, so there was plenty to eat in the kitchen. Rick would fix himself a plate of food and microwave it, eat, wash his dishes and then head back to his room. He came downstairs on Thursday night and found his dad's newspaper on the kitchen counter opened up to his mom's obituary. There was to be a viewing on Friday night and the funeral on Saturday. On the paper was a note that said, "Rick, be there! You are a casket bearer at the funeral so wear a nice suit." Rick stood there and read the obituary. As cold hearted as his dad seemed, he wrote a beautiful tribute to his mom. It broke his heart that he had no part in writing it and no part of planning the services but if there was as much thought and love that went into
Publisher: BookRix GmbH & Co. KG
Text: B. Richard
Editing/Proofreading: B. Richard
Layout: B. Richard
Publication Date: 07-16-2018
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