Suspicion by Heiða
Mick had always been a little eccentric. Or so he had been told. He was very clever and excelled in school. He got daily beatings for it. He simply did not know when to keep his mouth shut. He really enjoyed studying and he was good at it. Therefore, he would finish the schoolwork quickly. Sometimes he had even finished the day’s work at home the day before. When that happened he suggested extra activities he could do to keep himself busy while the others caught up.
He did not mean anything by it. It was simply to keep himself busy. He was making sure he would not get bored. Almost every time the teacher thought his ideas were fantastic and told the rest of the class to do the same. He accidentally increased the workload for everyone else, just because he wanted to keep busy. For that he got a beating.
His classmates and teachers, however, did not know the full story. The thing was that he also got beatings at home. Not every day. Only the days his father was home. His dad drove a truck across the country, therefore he would sometimes be away for a few days.
Mick liked those days as he got to spend them with his mum. His mum was the nicest person he knew. Her only weakness was how shy she was whenever his father was home. She would look away and hardly speak. June, a girl in his class was the same, she would only play with one girl and she would never raise her hand, nor speak in front of the others and the teacher said she was shy. That was how he knew his mum was shy.
His father called her stupid. Mick, however, knew she was not stupid. She always helped him with his homework if he could not work it out himself. Each time that had happened, she was able to help him figure out the answers. As he knew he was the cleverest boy in his class this had to mean his mum was extremely smart!
When it was just the two of them she would make pizza breads, which he loved! Pizza breads were slices of bread with pizza sauce, ham and cheese baked in the oven. She would also smile a lot and sometimes sing. His mothers voice was the prettiest voice he had ever heard. When he told her that she looked affectionately deep into his eyes and smiled. After a short silence she said softly:
- “That’s such a nice thing to say, Mick. You probably like mummies voice this much as it’s the voice you’ve heard the longest.” She kissed him on the forehead and continued singing.
When his father was not home, she would spend nights on the couch with him watching the telly. She would stroke his hair and cuddle him. At times like that he felt secure. Completely secure as he knew his mum was there to look after him.
Then his father would return. Mick knew he had arrived as he would hear the door slam, if he listened closely he would also hear the sound of a beer being opened. If Micks mum was in his father would shout something at her, tell her why it was her fault his day was no good and then fall asleep on the couch.
In the rare instances his mum was not there Mick would hide. He knew, from experience, if he did not hide, he would get a beating. His father never wanted him in the first place and therefore, he said he never really cared for him. On those occasions he had to explain bruising when he returned to school. If he did not do a good enough job and school would, in one way or another, check up on the situation at home, he would get another beating and not get to go to school for a few days.
His father was not a clever man. He never seemed to realise he could at least aim for places that could be covered with clothes. Then again, he knew Mick enjoyed school and maybe the fact he did not get to go was another way of punishing him for being his son.
At nights, when Mick could not sleep, he wondered how he could please his father. What he could do to make it better. He had done biology and knew he could not be unborn.
He hardly knew the grandmother on his fathers side. Apparently she was a slag who pumped her veins full of drugs. His mums parents seemed quite nice, but they lived 2 hours car drive away and he had heard his father shout at his mum that this family had never been good enough for them. They were stuck up bastards.
He did not have any siblings. He had nowhere to go to sort this problem out for his father. He knew he could not leave his mum behind anyway. His father was very rarely nice to her either. He was pretty sure he never really wanted her either. Why he married her and lived with her though, he did not understand.
He knew at some point that was a decision his mum and father had made. To live together. He also knew people were allowed to change their minds. Paul in his class said his dad moved out one day as he found a new wife, she had a big dog and children that dressed well.
Mick became suspicious, maybe that was what his father was waiting for. Not Pauls dad’s new wife, but a wife. Like that. One that did not wear old clothes from the charity store, one that did not have a bald spot on top of her head after an extremely bad beating last Christmas. One he did not consider stupid. One that had kids he actually could care for.
Mick began looking for this woman for his father. He believed life would be better for everyone if he would be able to help him out.
He thought about the lady that drove the school bus. She had a rustic laugh and pretty short pink hair. Although, he was almost convinced his dad did not like nose rings. Besides, she did not know how many continents there were nor the reason behind a bee’s buzz. His mum knew these things, and still his father considered her stupid.
The lady next door was very wise. She also knew a lot of stories. But she lived a little too close and she was probably at least 20 years older than his father. He would never go for that. He had heard him tell his mum how badly she was ageing.
Then there was Miss Hatton. She taught the 5th grade. She was very pretty and she had to be clever to be a teacher. She had rosy cheeks and golden, long hair. The tone of her voice was always caring and understanding. He had also noticed she did not have a ring on her hand.
He decided she would become his dad’s new wife. He and his mum could start a happy life together. Their flat could always be filled with the sound of his mum’s singing. The windows would never have to be covered with blinds. He would be able to go to school all the time. And the best thing of all, he could always feel secure in his mums’ company as he would not have to expect his father showing up and slamming the door.
All he had to do was to come up with a plan. A plan to get them to meet each other. That could prove to be tricky as she was not his teacher and his father very rarely went to his school. However, he was a very smart boy and knew it would not take him long to come up with a plan.
As he came home from school that day, he decided he was not going to study, he was going brainstorm about ways to set them up. He had run up the stairs, swung the door open and thrown his bag in the corner by the shoe rack. He went to the kitchen and got himself a glass of water before he went to his room and start scheming.
On his desk was a note. He had never expected this.
My lovely boy, I write this with a broken heart and eyes full of tears. I had to leave. I had to go. I will come back for you one day, I promise. When I do things will be better. Try to stay out of his way in the meantime.
I love you. Always.