Parent Me

From the third Tri Short Story Collection A Corner Of The World

I don’t think that’s how the neighborhood started. It was peaceful and quiet, not the way it became. But after months of dropping death, it became the place I didn’t want to be. At any given moment, the soundtrack of my life would start to play. The air raid sirens would go off and then the booms of wherever the bombs landed would echo like an electric guitar plugged into an amplifier.

Through all of that, my mother and father, filled with their fear and agitation, would only make things worse by trying to convince me that there was no hope. My best friend would then later come and convince me that there was. He parent me while my mother and father were lost in trying to survive the chaos of war.

“David, it’s going to be okay,” he said after another nightly soundtrack was played.

“But, Jonathan, why are they doing this? What have we ever done to them in our seventeen-years of living?”

“War doesn’t make a checklist of innocent people it wants to keep alive. We have to leave this place.”

“I’m afraid.”

“Pray.”

“What good would that do? My mother and father would never leave this place.”

“Are you leaving?” Jonathan asked.

“Where would I go? This is home.”

Even though I wanted to leave, I felt doing so would mean I was abandoning a place that was special to me. Too many memories held a big piece of the present.

In the morning, I went and took a look at some of those tangible memories that were now shattered, damaged, and destroyed as they laid around like broken pieces of diamonds. Jonathan said to pray and believe that God would answer. But how many prayers would have to be sent up before he did? And would I be able to accept the answer given? Those were things I pondered as I watched my folks huddled in a corner of the bomb shelter.

“I can’t see any hope,” I said to Jonathan who was sitting next to me.

“David, don’t see hope,” he said. “Feel faith. Have it. Live it.”

“In all this pain?”

“Are you going to wait for the good times?”

I watched as he got up and walked over to my parents. And as I looked at them, I asked myself, Do tragedy and sorrow test the strength of a person? As another bomb fell, I asked, why this way, God?

Just then my folks looked at me and smiled. I hadn’t seen that in a long time. I smiled back.

This story is an original idea written by me.© Thanks for reading.

See you next Tuesday, God willing. 🙂

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