A Single Wish Part 1

December 9, 2009
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I didn’t want it to turn out this way. I was supposed to be back home, safe, with barely a care in the world. It was amazing how one decision could affect your whole life, but somehow I knew that this couldn’t be the end of me.

“Eric! Time to get up,” came a soft whisper from a corner in the room. I blinked my eyes open. It was still dark out on the August morning, but in the mountains of British Columbia it was to be expected.

I moved the sheets off me and swung my legs off the bed. As my eyes came into focus, I saw our neighbor Rebecca in the doorway. “Breakfast is downstairs,” and with that she left. Rebecca had been with us for about 5 days and she was a great help. I stretched and sighed. Mother must still be asleep, which wasn’t the best sign.

As I slowed down the stairs, I tried to place a smile on my face. I tried to display the right emotions.

I came up to the dining room, took a deep breath and forced myself to walk through. The scene that met my eyes wasn’t surprising. The same scene had been playing on for a whole week. Ever since that fateful day, it replayed once again in my head.

I had woken up later than I should have and I had promised my dad I would help him cut down the big oak tree in the backyard. As I practically ran out of the door, I heard a monstrous crash. My heart dropped out of my chest. I ran past everything. I hoped against hope that everything was okay. Then I saw it. The tree had a jagged slash about halfway down and it had landed roughly on the ground. I couldn’t see my dad. I remember screaming at the top of my lungs, running, searching frantically for any sight of him when spotted a crumpled figure underneath the bottom of the severed trunk. I had burst into tears. As I closed the gap towards him and myself I was dreading what I was going to find. I was one step away when I heard him gasping for air. I threw myself beside him. There was a deep bloody gash on the side of his head and his left arm was completely covered by the tree. His eyes met mine. “Eric, there isn’t much time,” he called out hoarsely. I tried to interrupt, but he just continued. “Can you tell your mother and the rest of the family that I love them, and Eric, you got to be the man of the house now. Take care of the family. I’m proud of you. I love you.” and just as if it was on cue, my father, the man who I looked up to my whole life just seemed to slip away. A part of me felt as if it had gone with him.

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