The Day The Man Vanished

The Day The Man Vanished

A Chapter by FantasyWriter15

All Rights Reserved ®

 

Shelby Crouch

 

March 2013

 

 

Chapter One: The Day The Man Vanished

 

 

 

Funerals; they're an inevitable part of life, and we all hate them. Nobody wants the tears and the pain that comes with it, yet we can't avoid them.

 

 

I thought about this as I gently placed the white carnation on the coffin. Tears that I refused to let fall stung behind my eyes. I would remain strong, for my family. My little brother, and for my mother.

 

 

I knew that everyone was expecting me to break down, that meltdown that would come eventually, but so far it hadn't.

 

 

People were giving me sidelong glances, hugs, and their condolences. I didn't hear a word they said to me. I could barely comprehend anything beyond the fact that I was trying not to cry.

 

 

I looked at the picture sitting next to the closed coffin and fresh grief racked through my body, making my efforts not to cry almost completely futile. That wasn't going to happen, not now.

 

 

I had looked down from the picture, but now my eyes went back at the man staring at me, smiling his famous smile. Dad. I looked a lot like him if I wanted to admit it to myself. I had his light brown, straight hair. It fell to my waist, I always loved the fact that I had his hair, I don't know why. Maybe because it meant I was like one of the most amazing people in my life. Who was in my life, but not anymore.

 

 

 

I felt a tug on my right hand, and looked down into the tear-filled eyes of Mason, my younger brother. His eyes, the same as my own and my father's, a vivid green. So vivid, they could almost glow.

 

 

“I miss Daddy.” Tears fell from his eyes, making his face shine with the wetness. I strengthened my resolve, I would not cry. I wouldn't.

 

 

I bent down and hugged him to me, and whispered into his ear, “I know, I miss him too.” He wrapped his arms around my neck, closing his eyes.

 

 

I thought of all the things my dad would miss out on. Seeing me graduate, walking me down the aisle, meeting his grandchildren, or mom's favorite joke, sitting on the front porch with a shotgun when I brought my first boyfriend home to meet them.

 

 

Fresh tears stung around my eyes, and I blinked them away, my little brother's arms still wrapped around my neck. He was shaking slightly with the crying coming from him, tears soaked the spot where his face was buried in the crook of my neck.

 

 

Mom was sitting down in the front row, where people were lined up to see her and give her their condolences. She was crying her eyes out, and I hated to see her like this. Crying, and nothing I could do to comfort her.

 

 

How do you comfort someone who just lost their husband in a car crash? I knew she was expecting me to break down any minute now. Then again, maybe she was too lost to notice anything else around her.

 

 

I picked up Mason and sat down next to Mom with him sitting in my lap. The services went on, and we sang sad songs, and there were words from a preacher.

 

 

I watched this all go on, but I never sang a word, never listened to anything but my own thoughts spinning around and around in my head. Maybe I was broken, maybe my breakdown wasn't going to be external, but internal.

 

 

Everyone in the church got up, and walked out the doors, to their cars where they would follow the hearse to the graveyard. I got in my own car, by myself, and started the engine. For the first time all day, a lone tear slipped from my hold.

 

 

I wiped it away and cranked up the radio, trying to drown out my own thoughts. One minute it was blaring some rock song, and the next it was playing Just a Dream.

 

 

Growling, I turned off the radio, I didn't need this right now. I just needed to drive and not think about where I was going. I turned with the other cars, filing into the tiny gravel parking lot.

 

 

After turning off the car and running a hand through my hair, I stepped out into the bright sunlight of midsummer.

 

 

I went to join my Mom under the shady cover of an awning. I sat down and pulled Mason into my lap where he curled up, putting his face in my hair once again. I looked at the coffin, where there was something that I hadn't noticed before. A man was reflected in the glossy wood, a man in black.

 

 

I turned around, but there was no one who looked like that standing behind me, not in the graveyard anywhere.

 

 

I focused my attention on the procession, although most of the words were lost on me. In one ear, out the other, as they say.

 

 

More words, more tears from everyone around me. I wanted this to be a dream. I wanted to wake up tomorrow and know that none of this was real.

 

 

I followed the crowd as they stood up, and I walked absentmindedly behind my mother, where I once again found myself having no idea of how to comfort her.

 

 

Please, just let this be a dream, that was my recurring thought. I was more of a plead really.

 

 

But as the coffin was lowered into the ground and everyone was allowed to throw a handful of dirt on top of it, I knew that this was no dream.

 

 

I froze, this feeling of dread filling my senses, a sort of cold creeping feeling that crept up my spine. I looked up, not knowing what I might find.

 

 

What I saw surprised me. The man I saw in the reflection, still wearing black, his face almost unable to be seen. He gave me a half-smile, more of a smirk really. Then he disappeared into nothing.



© 2013 FantasyWriter15


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Added on March 7, 2013
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Author

FantasyWriter15
FantasyWriter15

Morrison, MO



About
I love to read and write, and hope that someday I will become a published author. I love fantasy, so that's what I write about. You can also check me out on Wattpad.com http://www.wattpad.com/u.. more..

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A Chapter by FantasyWriter15