Hi everyone, and thanks for dropping by. I'm going on holiday next weekend, so I won't be posting a #fridayflash for the next couple of weeks.
Although I won't be posting a story for the next two Fridays, and I won't be taking my computer with me, I'll try to find time to read #fridayflashes next Friday before we set off, and on the following weekend when we get back.
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I picked up the phone on the second ring, glad of the distraction, something to take my eye and mind away from all the black clothing, the chatter, and the buffet appreciation.
It was an old friend, Simon, his voice was a welcome oasis amidst this desert of emotional pretence.
Simon apologised for his absence, family commitments plus the sheer distance involved made it impossible for him to get here. He offered his condolences and asked how I was coping with the day. Just knowing that he cared helped, it helped a lot.
We chatted for a few minutes, then left each other with a promise to get together some time in the near future.
I hung up the phone and glanced around the room at all the people, the little huddles playing catch-up. The sound of occasional laughter further deepened the pain in my heart.
Janine had never been one of the popular relatives, she was thought of as loud and brash, they hadn't known her as I had, she used volume to conceal lack of self confidence, to paper over the emotional scars of childhood abuse and the stripped away self esteem it brought with it.
No amount of talking or counselling could ever make her see her own beauty, and she was beautiful, inside and outside, and yet she took her own life.
A hole had been ripped into my life that none of these present would ever believe she was capable of leaving.
Soon all of these people would be gone, away to resume their own lives, and I would be left alone with my memories.
Maybe, given time, the hole would become smaller... Maybe.
©2012 Stephen. J. Green.