Chapter 1A Chapter by SamBug
Justin Malone, after the shocking news that his ex-girlfriend had killed herself, he returns to his hometown to make the funeral. But then Kate asks something surprising of him from her grave.
The room filled with tons of people I’d never met before. They all sat over by Kate’s family so they must have been related to her somehow. I adjusted the black tie around my neck, loosening it up a little more so I could breath.
All dressed in black, a few of our high school and college buddies flooded in the room. Most of them were sort of there because I was, but I remembered a few of Kate’s close girlfriends from our senior year in high school. They kept in touch for a while throughout college so they must have felt obligated to come.
My eyes shifted over towards Kate’s parents. Her mother dug her face in a tissue and blew her nose gently. When she pulled away the white Kleenex, splotches of red covered her whole nose. She looked nearly sick, her eyes red and puffy just like her nose.
Kate’s dad sat straight up in his seat, staring at his cell phone to probably take care of some business. My first thought was How could he be worrying about work at a time like this? But then I remembered that peopled grieved in their own way. Maybe Mr. Larson couldn’t handle the situation. I know I’d been shocked when news traveled.
Kate’s mom called me up the night it happened. There were tons of muffled voices in the background and I could hear Mrs. Larson’s sobs through the line. She huffed in large breaths and then shakily let them out again.
I waited, realizing that the breathing wasn’t meant to be threatening but they were sad. Finally, words came out and I recognized the voice as Mrs. Larson immediately.
“Kate’s dead,” was all she managed to squeeze out.
It was all it took to send my world spinning round and round. It had been a year since I last spoke with her and a few months since I last thought about her. I had moved on, found someone new, and took my life in another direction.
But those two words, Kate’s dead, nearly made me die along with her. I broke down a cried for a while by myself but pushed as many memories as I could away. I couldn’t start thinking about the six years I had spent with Kate. It would only make it worse. And I was still trying to convince myself that Hannah, my new girlfriend, and I would make it another week.
I sat in the large church now, just watching. I shed my last tear just a few days ago and I felt like there was nothing left. My heart felt empty and the place where Kate used to be, and probably always would be, was now just a big, gaping hole.
David, my best friend in high school and Kate’s cousin, reached over and patted my hand. I felt ashamed that I couldn’t look remotely sad. I’m sure I just looked emotionless. Maybe like I didn’t care either way. But in the end, a lot of people looked like that. The women grieved the most.
Some of the men held sad looks but none of them cried. I began to wonder if I was the only man who cried. That made me feel weak, like it made me less of a man for crying over someone I had lost touch with over the last year.
“I cried like a baby,” David admitted. And just like that, he shed another tear. “I guess I still can’t get over the fact that my baby cousin, the girl you and I had grown up with our whole lives is gone. Just like that.”
“Yeah,” I mumbled but couldn’t bring myself to utter another word. I choked a little on that one little word and felt it was best to just mourn silently with everyone else. David did the same.
Hannah reached over now and took hold of my hand. As much as I needed her comfort and love, it didn’t feel right holding her hand at Kate’s funeral. Kate, my ex-girlfriend, the girl I was going to marry before things went wrong. I pulled my hand away from Hannah and just gave her a weak smile instead.
The room filled fast and then the pastor stood up by the pew and went through a few funeral traditions. Then people got up and spoke about Kate’s life. I felt like I owed it to Kate’s family to say something nice about her but I couldn’t find anything to say at all. When I thought about just coming up with stuff to say, my legs refused to move. So I missed out.
Mr. and Mrs. Larson didn’t seem to mind. They didn’t say anything about her either. Mainly, just a few uncles and aunts went up and said something. David said a few words, too. Then the pastor got up and nodded to someone in the back.
Every person in the church turned their backs to the pastor and looked at a tall, skinny man dressed in a fancy black suit. He carried a brief case in his hands almost as well as he carried himself.
His hair was beginning to gray around the roots but he didn’t seem to care because no one else really noticed it either. How could they when the only thing really noticeable on the extremely tall man was the extremely expensive suit. It was far more worthy than a funeral. So I guess it came as a shock to everyone that a man of such high stature was here at Kate’s funeral.
He got up onto the stage and pulled a few papers out of his briefcase. The church stayed silent with the occasional cough or sniffle. Other than that, it was just Mrs. Larson, still sobbing. Her face was now buried in her husband’s arm. He just looked forward, no expression lingering in his eyes.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, my name is Aaron Bartley. I legally represent the Larsons’ and I’m here because, upon investigating, the police stumbled across a few things Kate would like to be read.”
Mr. Bartley gathered some papers in his hands but then set them down again after reading over a little bit of it. Clearing his throat, he began to read.
“I’ve been thinking about death lately. So I decided to write this memoir so my family and friends can better understand why this happened and maybe get a little closure. I’ll only release this to the world on two conditions. One: It be read to everyone at my funeral…if there is one. And two: there is only one person who will be able to interpret what this all really means and understand my message. So it’s my very last wish that these papers be released to and read out loud to everyone by Justin Malone.”
Mumbles erupted through the room, eyes searching around for me sitting in the middle row of the benches. I met every eye that met mine. But the only gaze that seemed to bother me was from Kate’s father. His eyes fidgeted a little but they never left me. He was almost challenging me to see if I had the guts to stand up and read Kate’s last thoughts to everyone in the room.
It was a challenge I knew I had to take.
© 2011 SamBug
Added on July 4, 2011
Last Updated on July 4, 2011
AboutOkay... So these things are always hard to fill out but I suppose I'm going to try to describe me as best as possible. My name is Sam. Some people call me Sammy poo, Sam Bug, or simply Sam Loo. I'm .. more..
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