This week we have a brand new writer. Her debut short story will touch you and evoke raw emotions that you can’t help, but feel. The writing prompt used was: She saw two people in the picture where there should have been three.
No Longer Here
“What’s happened to Mike?” Edel asked as her husband George hung up the phone.
”Mike’s missing. He went out on a boat with his friends and he may have drowned,” George said, his expression dark and gloomy.
The caller was a friend. Mike was George’s nephew, a smart, handsome and intelligent young man who just married a year ago. So Edel and George rushed to the cottage near the lake where Mike and his wife had spent the long weekend together with their friends.
A tragic scene greeted them. Many friends and relatives including Mike’s parents gathered at the cottage, praying for Mike to come back. Where was he? Surely a strong swimmer and a healthy young man like him wouldn’t drown?
Two long days of searching, and then the police found Mike. Drowned…lifeless.
Edel and George missed Mike. They missed his jokes and sense of humor at the family gatherings. A few weeks later, Edel visited Mike’s mother, Maria, who looked lonely and bereft at the loss of her only son at the age of thirty-three. She cried as she spoke about Mike.
Maria said that she knew something was wrong that Sunday morning when she stood at the bottom of the steps and her eyes rested on the family portrait hung above the clock. She saw two people in the picture where there should have been three. For a moment she was sure Mike was missing.
Then the phone rang…the call that told her Mike was gone. Was that God’s way of letting her know what was about to happen?
Maria remembered that on the day before the trip he came to borrow the cooler. His usually bright face was somber as he gave her advice about her diet. He had asked, “Where is Dad?” She told him that he was at the gym.
Mike went to the gym—somewhat unusual—just to see his dad, and then brought him home, after which he took off. That last glance and his goodbye still lingered in her mind. Did Mike have any inkling that it would be the final time he saw his parents?
The other day while driving to work Maria heard Mike’s voice. ‘MUMMY!” he called out. That was when she saw the car in front of her. She hit the brake just in time. She had dozed off briefly; the stress of losing Mike had taken a toll on her sleep. If not for that voice she would have got into an accident.
When Edel walked out of her cousin’s house she felt sad, but she took comfort in her cousin’s stories. You see, although Mike was gone from this world, he still watched over them from heaven.