The B*****d

The B*****d

A Chapter by MeratheRestless

October 1992

"It's okay." Carlinda assured Hyuk for the umpteenth time. "My little man is already like his daddy, long and skinny but strong."

Since he did not know enough English to tell his sister-in-law that he had never held a baby before in all of his 17 years, Hyuk finally accepted the squirming newborn into his arms. It did not escape his notice that the unusually tall and shapely 22 year old remained at his side as he held her son. Carlinda was a very gregarious and easy to like person, who had treated with nothing but acceptance and kindness. Still Hyuk sensed a certain tension and distrust.

Dashan Xavier Malachi Heong squirmed in his uncle's arms having instinctively awakened. His narrowed eyes of indiscernable color, like pools of murky water, roved about. His wide flat nose crinkled ever so slightly. All of four days old and already a bonefied Mama's boy, he didn't appreciate being passed into the arms of strangers. 

"This is your Uncle Yu." Carlinda cooed to reassure him that she had not gone anywhere. "He came over just to see you!"

Hyuk had battled with himself for days trying to decide whether it was worth it or not to come see what his parents adamantly called an abomination. Over the months his father had become wise to his outings with Seok and Carlinda, however little had been said about the matter. Few words passed between father and youngest son at home giving Hyuk the impression that Uri really did not care what he did.

"So when are you going back to work?" He said to change the subject. "I know it must be extra difficult with only Seok working." 

The baby tugged at the cap that covered his head to keep him warm in the drafty one room flat. His parents did not have much money. In fact they had little else than love, as Seok worked as a laborer to pay rent and vocational school tuition, while Carlinda supplimented by working in the clubs near the Air Force base. 

"I'm not." She said slowly. "Not unless I can find somebody to watch him." 

Childcare was scarce in South Korea despite a thriving economy and plenty of working mothers. Grandparents usually filled the gap, often in exchange for a small weekly fee, but that obviously wasn't an option for this couple. Seok and Carlinda had brought their firstborn child into a certified mix made in Hell without even knowing it. 

"Can't you take him with you?" Hyuk suggested with a shrug of his shoulders. "He's just a baby. He won't know." He glanced around the room that served as bedroom, living room, and kitchen and wondered how such a supposedly rich country could possibly have shady slums. 

"And who's going to feed and dry him while I work?" She pointed out. "I can't take him up on stage with me!" 

She had a point there. Nobody, American or Korean, would think a woman dancing with a baby strapped to her back was sexy. It would ruin the illusion she was trying to create and she'd be better off just staying home with her baby.

Except she and Seok could not afford to do that. 

"It took your brother three months of working before we could even get this place together." Carlinda chatted on to fill the silence. "I didn't think he was going to do it, leave your daddy and be with me."

"He probably wanted to get away from Apa." Hyuk shrugged again. "Hell, he's my blood father and I don't want to live with him!" 

As he spoke he felt something shift in the air.

"Well...." Carlinda perked up a little. "Would you ever think about coming to stay with us?" 

"Apa would never let me." Hyuk shook his head.

"He didn't let your brother either. We just got his stuff and left one day while your dad was at work." 

His nephew, warmed somewhat to him by now, touched his hand and looked up at him. He was already quite a charming little abomination. Or maybe he just sensed that his mother needed help at the moment. 

"I spent the night there." Uncle No Good leaned his shaved head back against the wall, bumping it lightly. "And the next day Carlinda and you accompanied back to Halbi's place for my clothes."

Joon watched him as he nodded out for a moment then rose on his own unsteady feet.

It was late, so late that his cousin Samara and aunt Ermina had come home without being noticed. The smell of food hung in the air and Joon became aware of his hunger. By the window he stared out at the twilight and smiled in spite of himself. How many childhood days and nights had he spent up in the breathtaking Tian Shan mountains with his devoted uncle? How many times had he lain on a plastic sheet on the roof on stifling summer nights with his sister falling asleep to spun tales?

His uncle was the only father he had ever really known and now he knew why. 

"Little Black B*****d." He said quietly to himself over and over again like a mantra.

The softest touch brought him back to reality.

"You were never that to us." Ermina's melodious voice  settled him. "B******s don't have family to eat with. You do." 

The story paused while Joon sat down to dinner with his uncle's family. 

Afterwards he would learn who exactly had deemed him unworthy of parents of his own. 

© 2017 MeratheRestless

Author's Note

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Added on September 1, 2017
Last Updated on September 3, 2017




Really there's not much to tell. I study in university, work a part time job, go to Kingdom Hall twice a week, out preaching at least twice per month, and spend the rest of my time at home. Don't like.. more..


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