WW 95

17181920~Lauren~
I was going through my mail when I came across an envelope with no return address. I thought that it may have come from a fan of my book. I was surprised when I opened it and found that it was Elliott’s mother asking if we could get together and catch up. I called the number that she gave me and we agreed to meet for dinner that night. I entered the restaurant with Lee in my arms and saw Melinda sitting by herself…I felt so nervous. I hadn’t seen her since Elliott’s memorial and this was Lee’s first time meeting her grandmother. We made eye contact and she got up and hugged us both. She gazed at Lee lovingly and told me that she looked so much like Elliott did as a child. While we were eating, she slid a book across the table to me. It looked like an old journal. She told me that it was Elliott’s great grandfather’s and that I may be interested in what was written in it. I flipped through it and saw a sketch of what looked like a giant octopus tearing a ship apart. I skimmed through the pages and saw words like “sea witch” “mermaid” and “kraken.” It reminded me of the stories Elliott used to tell me and I mentioned that to her. “It’s not just a story…it’s all true.” Melinda told me darkly. “He’s still out there…somewhere.” It sounded ridiculous but part of me wanted to believe that…so badly. “Do you really believe that, Melinda?” I asked skeptically. “I have to believe it.” She replied. “It’s the only thing that gets me through the day. The thought of seeing him again.” I didn’t know what to say, so I just reached out and laid my hand on top of hers and told her I understood. There wasn’t much more conversation after that. She paid the bill and we stood to up to leave. As we were walking out, I told her she was welcome to come see us anytime. She nodded and gave me a sad smile, then she was gone. That night, I didn’t sleep not one bit. I kept having nightmares of Elliott being tortured by sea creatures…and it felt so real.

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