Melted Ice Cream
Martin Hooijmans | Lars de Ruyter
Peter stumbled down the stairs. He could hardly see. He could hardly breathe. His heart ached, and his mind was numb. He finally dropped down on the last step, buried his face in his hands. The tears did not come.
Dad was upstairs. He and Peter had stood around the bed for a long time, motionless, silent. Neither knew what to say. What to do. Dad had at last suggested that Peter should call his grandparents.
An agonized scream filled the house, followed by the heavy sobs of a large man. Left alone, dad had finally broken. As had the clouds outside, suitingly crying their own tears. Peter’s face remained dry.
Someone kicked against the front door. Through the wet, matted glass, Peter made out a shape that seemed familiar. A shape he longed to see. He opened the door.
She was wet to the bone. She held two cones of ice cream, a comfort ruined by the rain. She looked Peter straight in the eye. She knew. Somehow she knew.
The cones dropped to the dirt and Peter felt her cold body flung against his, her arms wrapping themselves tightly around his neck. He felt the warm stream of her tears on his cheek, and then felt his own.
Finally felt his own.