174 days after
These past few days were a total whirl for me: visiting my old friends in Middlesbrough and my family there after all. I haven´t seen them since the James funeral firstly because they don´t like London as much as I do and secondly, I don´t like to come back to my hometown as much as my mum would want me to come. To put it in a nutshell, it´s complicated. It would be to idyllic to say I enjoy being in my mum´s house again. All my brothers are here with their spouses and girlfriends and I am being a little left out. Not that I am not used to it, but still. My oldest brother Jamie is 35 and his wife Emma are here with their little daughter Alice. I love that girl. She makes me smile every time she opens her mouth. I just adore her every word. Then there´s my brother Alex with his girlfriend Heidy. She seems like a nice girl with all these unreadable tattoos around her wrist and forearm. Alex is the closest brother to me, since our little age difference. He is 23 and I am 25. And then there is Garry. He is the one between all four siblings. It could seem like I put the best in the end but unfortunately Garry is the biggest asshole on the whole world. I often wonder myself if he actually is my brother. But our noses prove me wrong. I don´t think I can handle describing why he is such a fucking prick. I don’t have the strength to do so. All this Christmassy food is slowly traveling my belly and I am loudly exhaling on the sofa.
“Mrs. Newman, that dinner was delicious.” Emma smiles while chewing the last bite.
“Thank you darling, it tastes better when I have all of you under the one roof again.” Mum replies and gives a smile back. Her grey hair is slightly sticking out of her well-done bun. The look at her just proves me for how long I haven’t seen her.
“Mum, don’t start again” Alex adds and joins me on the sofa. “I´ve told you I am doing my best to come visit you more often but I can´t.” Of course he can, but he doesn’t want to. He doesn’t like it here same as I. And of course Garry lives next door. “I guess we should get going” Heidy adds politely and look at her watch. “-I mean if we want to catch the train Alex, we should hit the road” she shrugs and Alex gives her a nod. “Yeah, right” Alex replies and stand up. I quickly took him by his shirt. “We haven´t actually had our talk you idiot!” I whisper and squint my eyes a little. I hope I am not too obvious. “ I am sorry, Noel. I´ll call you. But we are late already and-“ I cut him off. “-Ok go now. I´ll call you tomorrow.” I smile and let go of his shirt. I also smile at Heidy, who is watching us the whole time. Shit. “It was nice meeting you Heidy, I hope you and Alex come visit me soon.” I tell her and walk to her. “Of course we will. Thank you again Mrs. Newman” she waves at everyone except Jamie, because he is trying to make Alice fall asleep. My mum kisses both of them and gives them package of Christmas sweets. I don´t see Garry anywhere but I am glad not to. I see the smirk on Alex face when he watches mum persuading Heidy to take that package. “Call when you arrive Alex” my mum ads and shut the door behind them.
“I´ll go check on Jamie and Alice” Emma announces when Garry suddenly appears in the living room. “Alex and that, have already left?” Garry asks when Emma leaves. “Oh shut the fuck up Garry” I tell him while putting dirty plates to dishwasher. My mum quickly hushes me. “What? You let him talk like that about Heidy?” I tell loudly to my mum. Then I regret the tone of my voice. My mum is a tiny woman and she shakes after every loudly spoken word. “No, but it´s Christmas and I don’t like when you speak that harsh to your brother” mum tells me and put a clean mug back to its place. I just sigh because this goes nowhere. She will always stand behind him no matter what. She thinks he is still that cute little boy who brought her flowers from the playground. But he is a fucker for me since he has joined the team dad after the divorce. “Go fuck yourself Noel” Garry tells me and I ironically smile at him. “Garry!” mum warns us again and he just smirks at her. I would just strangle him if I could. “I don’t have to listen to you Garry, seriously, every world that leaves your mouth is just a complete shit” I tell him and leave the kitchen. When I am about the close the door behind me I just hear: “Yeah. James got apparently tired of your shit for change and ended it” he shouts at me and I walk back to him. He is standing in the middle of the hallway now. I am crying every time I say his name out loud. I am even crying when someone else says it. But when fucking Garry says his name and in that context I just can´t hold back. “Don’t you ever. Speak of him like that” I tell him quietly, the anger in me burning the hole in my heart. I see he regrets it now. But he is still acting like he doesn’t. I don’t even let him speak. “You can say disgusting things about me or even Alex but never about James.” I say once again and leave the room with tears in my eyes.
204 days after
Finally back home. With no stress linked with my idiotic brother and my too good to say something –mother. My flat is small but since James´s death it seems too big for me. Walls are filled with memories of him and I still catch his sent in the air sometime. Is it wrong? Wanting to feel him here? I haven’t changed the sheets since then. I want- so badly I want to spot him by the sink, brushing his teeth and making faces at me in the mirror. I want that urge to turn into reality so fucking much. My eyes fall on the clock above the table. 02:47 a.m. Great. I have 3 hours of sleep until work. I should seriously start sleeping properly. I blink slowly at the running TV when my eyes finally shut for good.