Noah pushes through knowing that once again, his father will be a no-show.
|The sun began to fade, darkening the clear sky to a dusk blue. Noah Danve stood at his wooden fence waiting his father since this afternoon. His chin rested against the wooden posts with his eyes peeled on the empty driveway. Noah glanced at his watch again. A single tear escaped his eye and trickled down his cheek. He wiped his tear away with the back of his hand and dropped his hands in defeat. His father wouldn't make it to play baseball with him yet again.
Noah gathered his baseball bat and mitt from the unruly grass. He leaned down to reach for the ball but hesitated. He shrugged his shoulders and waved his hand then headed inside, leaving the balls scattered across the yard. The grass was months overgrown with weeds marking their territory. His sneakers pounded against the patio leading to his garage where his dad's lawnmower was parked. Noah stopped at the John Deer and looked for the keys. He shook his head and slapped his hands against his sides. Before stepping inside his house, his face turned a deep red. He turned around and began running toward the lawnmower with bared teeth and fierce eyes. Noah screamed as he let his anger explode on the machine. His fists pounded against the metal until blood poured from his knuckles. Noah picked up his metal bat from the garage floor and held it in the air. His lip curled like a dog under attack.
Noah's eyes flickered and he gasped. He stumbled backward, tripping over his own feet. Recognition crossed his face. His eyes popped as he stared at the bat behind him in position to swing. His head shook back and forth as he threw the bat down again, but this time, away from himself. Noah stood rocking back and forth, rubbing his face.
A car door slammed. Noah flinched and jerked his head toward the silver BMW parked in the driveway. His face and shoulders fell at the sight of his mother walking toward him. Molly held out her arms and Noah collapsed into them, accepting her affection. They held each other with tears flowing down their cheeks. Noah slid to the ground, choking on his sobs while his mom ran her fingers through his peppered hair.
The sun had long disappeared when Molly stood and held out her hand for Noah. He glanced up from the floor and stared at her hand. His piercing blue eyes appeared troubled like an ocean in distress. He sighed then grabbed her hand, allowing her to pull him to his feet. She led him to the car and began driving in silence. Both stared through the window, watching the world whip past them.
After a ten-minute drive, the car slowed and turned into an opened metal gate. The parking lot was empty, aside from a yellow Volkswagon.
Miles of greenery stretched out beyond their focal point. Fresh flowers were planted everywhere. Molly gripped her son's hand and led him down a stone pathway. A gust of wind whipped past Noah, stealing his hat from his head. It tumbled in the wind, brushing across the grass. Noah followed his hat, just a hair faster than his regular stride.
The hat caught onto a stone, giving him a chance to catch up. Noah stopped short at a gravestone where his hat landed. His father's name was etched across the stone, Scott Danve 4/17/63. Molly stepped up beside her son and slid her hand into his. He turned and looked at his mother and she nodded.