Only Me ~ Part 7
My watch is a bit slow, which means I have waited over half an hour. The swing isn't overly comfortable and my bum's starting to ache badly.
One hour has passed. My time is up. I told Mum I wouldn't be out for longer. Perhaps it's a good thing I mightn't ever see my brother again.
If it weren't for the red keyring in my pocket, the past week might all have been a dream. But it is in my pocket. And it has my name on it.
When I open the front door, I notice that there's no smell of dinner. The kitchen door is closed and Mum and Dad are shouting at each other.
They stop when I enter. "When's dinner?" I ask. "It'll have to be takeaway," Dad says. I pour myself a glass of orange, but I'm not thirsty.
As I force myself to drink it, I wish for everything to be back to normal. Then I realise normal's what I hate. Normal's Dad behind a paper.
I close my eyes. I cannot think straight. I hurl the empty glass at the floor. "It was an accident," I scream, fetching a dustpan and brush.
On my way out to the bin, I nearly cut myself on a sliver of glass poking through the bag. I lift the lid, drop in the bag, close it. Pause.
I lift the lid again. Push aside the bag. Undo the bag beneath. Look over my shoulder when I see what I thought I could see through the bag.
There is a bit of last night's dinner on its red peak. I can see the bear in more detail now it's off his head. It's not as fierce close up.
Honesty was my best policy. But they can't know that I met the boy in the park more than once. Nor that their eight year old has held a gun.
They probably do know. But it won't ever be spoken. They want me to do well in school and grow up and be a doctor. Doctors do not hold guns.
I do up the bag. Put the bag with the glass on top again. I close the lid and walk inside. "Does ham and pineapple suit you, son?" Dad asks.
"Yes," I say. I can feel the keyring in my pocket. It presses into my skin and reminds me, will always remind me, that I had a brother once.