The Beginning of an End

December 17, 2008
By Lauren Zaharis, Mesa, AZ

The Beginning of an End

The sky was the clearest crystal blue without a cloud in sight
Just the hot Arizona sun reaching out its arms heating up our day
Reassuring me today was gonna be great
Michael was wearing his famous swim shorts
And me a little bikini showing off a lovely pop belly

Without a care in the world for what seemed like hours
We sat there splashing, laughing and playing
With huge smiles on our wet faces
Sliding down the slide

I remember having to go inside
Don’t know why, I just did
I went back into my room to get what I needed
The house was peaceful as my sister practiced her piano

Footsteps of my older brother Zack rung in my ear
They stopped but the tension was still hung the air
I heard the door WUSH open and a cry of horror, agony and pain slipped through my mother’s quivering lips

Not understanding the importance of what was happening I continued to my room
Still not comprehending I picked up my favorite Barbies and played happily, however I could feel something was not right

After ten minutes I got up Barbie in hand an walked in to the kitchen
What I saw, as you could only imagine was overwhelming

Our house was a hurricane
Pure chaos!
Firefighters everywhere
Neighbors scattered
Family close

Not being able to see, confused and scared I struggled to the back door to find a familiar face
Fighting to get through the crowds of people I felt a gentle, warm, comforting hand grab mine
It was Bob, my neighbor, my second dad
He lifted me up,
Placed me on his hip
Then showed me

What I saw made my heart stop
The limp, lifeless and blue body of Michael
Lay there still, motionless

Then I looked up
My mom hunched helplessly, over his lifeless body
His tender head rested on her lap
Breathing out three and pushing thirty
She loving tried to get his little, silent, pale chest to move

I looked at Bob
Petrified not believing my eyes
Not knowing what to do I just looked at him
I saw tears slowly start to swell up in his eyes
Then then streamed down mine

My eyes were horrified
My heart ached
My body tensed
My mind raced

Clutching, holding tight to his neck laying my head on his shoulder
I cried
His gentle voice whispered in my ear
Everything is going to be fine,
Your are okay,
I am here.

He held me close and tight
While I cried a lake on his shoulder

All I was thinking is he is gone
My playmate
My dress up doll
My customer
My friend
But most of all
My brother was gone

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