His eyes are vacant, his mind in another world entirely. He hides it well but his stare gives him away, a window to his soul. Rejection, judgment, that’s all he’s ever seen. Knowledge that he shouldn’t have to know in his teens. All the hollering, the wallowing, the woman always fighting the love and passion he gave unconditionally. Hitting and spitting words not fit for virgin ears. She vanished, leaving behind scars. They may fade over time but they will always be there, a reminder of what was. He loved her, but she didn’t love him back. He forgave her; she didn’t want to be forgiven. She distanced herself; everyone thought she was crazy. They felt disappointment about what she turned out to be: a monster. But he only felt the emptiness in his chest for the loss he suffered. Day and night, hugging himself tight, feeling as if he let go he’d fall apart. Not a chance to cheat this unquestionable fate. Not a choice to change his mother’s hatred. Only the darkness ahead of him that he knows will surely come, hoping to god there could be a glimmer of light.