Brown – 7.4: The Painting

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The sun was already setting when Hazel got to work in the garden. He didn’t mind the night, he preferred it all his life. The garden was situated in the back yard of the home he had shared with his older brother Harry. The garden was originally planted by their mother but Hazel had been the one in charge of it ever since he finished school. It was relaxing for him to be out with the plants, it helped his creative juices flowing, and helped him make new music. He didn’t even mind that tonight he wasn’t alone, his brother was out in the garden as well, working on a painting.


It was the moment that Hazel glanced at that painting that his evening was ruined. Harry seemed completely emerged in putting the finishing touches to notice his brother staring at it behind his back gaping. Hazel wanted to say something to get him out of his trance but he just couldn’t find the words while he watched his brother’s hand move swiftly over the canvas. Harry had painted a dark skinned woman with long black hair, wearing a white wedding dress holding her head in white gloved hands and obviously crying.

Even if it was a free interpretation Hazel knew what his brother was hinting at with that damned painting and he felt his hands clench into fists as he thought about it. Years ago, before his brother married his beautiful Rhaenys Hazel had planned his own wedding, it was to be a great deal, he had planned it into minute details with his godmother Dina, he wasn’t wearing white, nor did he have long hair, or been a woman, bu the evening had ended with him in tears. Why? Because Donovan Alto, the man he was to marry did not show up…


It had been so long ago, and yes Donnie had broken Hazel’s heart but they had found peace afterwards, peace and much more. They got married in the end, signing a paper in the City Hall, without much fuss, they were happy now, yet Harry just didn’t seem to accept it. Even though Donnie had been living with them for years now, and even though Hazel was obviously happy he would often catch his brother casting Donnie dirty looks or even saying nasty, plain offensive things to the man.

It bothered Hazel, it bothered him a great deal, he wanted his brother and his husband to get along. But he could not get angry at Harry, Harry was his big brother, he always had his back while they were growing up and Hazel knew it was the same now. Harry was making sure he doesn’t get hurt again, that’s all… He just didn’t know how to make him see that this time he wouldn’t… He knew deep down inside that Donnie would never hurt him again….

He confided his worries to their oldest sister Cocoa when he went with her to her doctor’s appointment.

“I just want him to see that Donnie is the light of my life, he is my everything… My soulmate, my best friend…”


Cocoa tried to speak back but she was too out of breath running at the treadmill for her cardio exam. Hazel sighed.

“He is just so supportive in everything you know…. You know my client, Latricia?” He asked. Latricia was the young girl he was managing, daughter of Nina Caliente and the late Riam Gradle, formally educated in music she was a star in the making and he was there to help her get to the top. The only problem was that the girl was too quiet and timid for a young aspiring musician, Hazel had learned, on his own skin, that the part of making it big in that cruel world was clawing your own way to the top, making sure it was your voice, your music that got heard… Latricia had none of that spirit. She was pretty content to keeping to the sidelines and letting her angelic voice, and mesmerizing guitar skill speak to herself. Hazel was afraid that would not be enough.


And so he dragged her to parties, all kinds of parties, events, wherever he could… And while he was wooing the crowd in her name Latricia still hung back and Hazel didn’t know how to bring her up to the front… That is where Donnie stepped in. He would be the one who would sit with her, talk to her, make her feel comfortable, and make her get off the damn couch. Hazel would be nowhere without his Donnie.

The reason he wanted Harry to see it now more then ever, the reason the damned painting hit him so hard was that he and Donnie had started talking about some big changes, changes that would affect not only the two of them but the whole household. He and Donnie were talking adoption.

Hazel had always wanted kids. He loved the little ones, he had played the part in raising Harry’s kids, and enjoyed every second of it, Aenar and Vaela were adorable. And Donnie had his own experiences, he had been running his daycare that had been growing more and more every year, he had three regular kids now, three toddlers he had to take care off at the same time, little Earl Hoves, Jillian Fegel and another little one whose name eluded Hazel. He knew the two of them would make great parents, and wanted Harry to know it.

“But why is it so important Harry knows it?” His sister asked stepping out of the treadmill at least. The sentence came out it short bursts as she fought for breath. He handed her a towel to wipe her sweat but he said nothing. Why was it important? “Maybe you are the one insecure in the whole deal and you are just using Harry as an excuse. I mean it is your life, it will be your kid, not Harry’s. I don’t see why your brother would be an obstacle there, maybe it is something else after all?”


Could it really be something else? Hazel wondered looking at the man he had loved for most of his life. Was something standing between the two of them? Between them and children? The only answer he could come up with was work.

He was just so busy lately, he had taken on so many side projects that he barely had time for anything… Working with Latricia Caliente had opened up his mind as too how much advice he had to offer young, aspiring musicians so while Donnie slept he would get on his computer, log into SimTube and look for promising young stars that he mentored online, there was also Latrica of course, his day job, and Nina had gotten him a spot at the Sunset Valley Symphony, he was to perform with them for the New Year Concert, it was a great deal and he had to practice for it, which took time of course… He barely had any time left to plan his nephew’s birthday party and he promised he would… What would happen when he had his own children? Would he brake promises to them as well?

Was he really ready to be a parent?

Hazel barely slept that night tossing and turning. He still blamed that stupid painting.

Browns – Round 3.2

Round 3 continues! It’s Brown’s again, if you missed the first part read it here. If you don’t feel like reading it just go on.

Day 3

TS3W_2015-10-24_16-02-55-68Yesterday Harry sold his favorite painting. It wasn’t easy for him, it was the first thing he had done after he decided to pursue his painting career. It was also painted in the time his mother was still alive. That is how his life was divided right now The Before and The After.

He wanted it to change, he really did. Especially since everyone he knew noticed his mood never changing, just last week Tomas, his own brother, had a party and did not invite him. He was dragging everyone down, with his constant talk of death, or so he heard. He admired Hazel’s ability to go on. He told him once that mum was with them, in their heads and in their hearts and will be as long as they live. Harry knew that gave him strength to keep living his life the way that mum would want him too but he could not just accept it, he could not stop thinking that his mother was gone. She was not in this world anymore. Her body lay in the ground. She was gone.

He talked about it with Junior, Hannah’s husband. In a strange way he could understand, better then anyone. Maybe because he had lost both of his parents too, one when he was young and the other later in life but maybe also because he was a grown man who had to be strong, for those around him, those he loved.

That is why Harry sold the painting, for those he loved.

Rhaenys had Wednesday’s off so Tuesday night could be a nice date night. He called her in the morning, she wasn’t at the lab, last month her big experiment, one she had been working for nearly an year finally worked so she was writing a paper about it. She told him she had plans for the afternoon but he could pick her up at the Salon. A new styling place just opened and it seamed that everyone was getting haircuts these days.

Harry spent the day running errands and then showed up at the Salon, in his nicest clothes with a bouquet of flowers. Rhaenys had her hair shortened, he didn’t fail to notice, she still looked beautiful, TS3W_2015-10-24_16-14-33-30and coincidentally she wore the same dress she wore for their first date.

A smile escaped Harry’s lips, it happened every time she saw her. He had planed the whole evening, this was merely a start but seeing her, the sunshine of his life, he couldn’t wait one more moment.

So he got down on one knee, nearly dropping the ring as he fished it out of his pocket, that’s how badly his hands shook. “What’s going on Harry? What are you doing?” She asked but he turned around in an instant. “Rhaenys Targeryen, my life changed the moment I first saw you, there was never a woman who made me feel what you make me feel every single moment when you are around.” His felt his voice was shaking but he went on. “I would make a fool out of myself every day only to make you smile, and I live for you, and your happiness… And nothing, and I mean it, would make me happier than if you would become my wife.” He looked in those pretty lilac eyes, his heart threatening to explode. Waiting. She smiled. “I love you Harry, and yes, sweetie, a thousand yeses.” He jumped up and hugged her. He even lifted her in the air, she laughed and he was happy. For the first time in the longest while he was truly happy.

He proposed to ditch all other plans and just go to his place (they never went to her house) and have mad, engaged sex. She just smiled and said she was looking forward to dinner, so on to diTS3W_2015-10-24_16-18-45-94nner it was. He took her to the beach bar, that had a nice terrace that overlooked the ocean. They sat there for a while and debated between pizza and spaghetti, they both wanted Italian and then as a real gentleman he went
to order food and drinks.

He had barely taken a seat when and was about to make a comment about how lovely a night it was, with stars sTS3W_2015-10-24_16-19-34-65hining so bright, or some crap like that, he was a man in love after all when he heard a child’s voice: “Mummy?”

He had never before seen Rhaenys’ son but the moment he had lain eyes on the little boy before him he knew it was him. He had the same light, almost white, hair and even though his eyes were dark blue there was a lot of his mother in him. Rhaenys jumped up immediately upon seeing him: “Aenys! What are you doing here?” “I was looking for you mummy…” “In a bar? Where is your father?” She turned around furious but it was clear the boy was alone. “He is at practice.. I think… He said you went to get a haircut and you never came home… I was worried…” The boy was on the verge of tears and Harry felt very sorry for him. He hated not being with his mum too when he was his age. He wanted to say something, but no soothing words came to him. “And you just sneaked out to look for me? Where was Diane? I swear I’m gonna kill someone!” And she seemed ready to. Harry could understand. The boy was no more than five or six and here he was, in a bar, alone but still he tried to calm her down. “Rhaenys…” He lifted his hand to touch her but she pulled it back. “Not now Harry.” Her eyes never left the boy. “Let’s go home Aenys, I’ll have a talk both with Diane and your father. Come on.” She held the boy’s hand tightly, but not with the hand which displayed her new ring, one that cost Harry his favorite painting, she kept that one behind her back. As she was about to leave she turned around to Harry like she just remembered he was there as well. “I’ll call you later, take the food home.”

Harry sighed as she watched her go. She never introduced him to his son. They were dating for three years, hell they were getting married and this was the first time he even saw the little guy. He sighed. They were going to talk about this, as soon as possible he told himself. He begged the waitress to pack their food and he drank both their drinks before hailing a cab.

He sat in the car, his face pressed to the window, holding his phone in his hand, not to miss a call from Rhaenys. This was so not the way he wanted this night to end but now he couldn’t wait to get home, all alone… It was then that he noticed something outside. “Stop the car!” He yelled at driver who suddenly hit the brakes, almost making him drop the food containers from his lap. “Could you please wait here for a second?” He asked the driver as he ran out.TS3W_2015-10-24_16-20-25-12

The person he saw was almost completely emerged in a big dumpster behind the theater, only his legs were sticking out in the air but he would recognize those damn sneakers anywhere. “HAZEL WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING?” He yelled hoping a smelly hobo wearing the same shoes as his younger brother will climb up from the dumpster looking at him confused. He wouldn’t even mind if the hobo would attack him, he could use a good fight. Instead his worst fear was confirmed as his brother poked his head out of the dumpster. “Harry? What are you doing here?” He asked genuinely surprised. “I should ask you the same thing dumb fuck. Please tell me you had accidentally thrown something away, and please make it super important.” He was exhausted, he did not want to deal with this right now. Hazel got out of the dumpster and shook his clothes out a bit. “I was just looking around. You would never believe what kind of stuff people throw away, seriously, you can find some cool stuff, just the other day I found the…” He then stopped suddenly. “Never mind.” He mumbled. “What if somebody sees you Haze? You want people thinking we live out of dumpsters now that mum’s gone? Ha?” “No one could see me Harry! It’s late. And what are you doing here anyways?” “A date… Don’t ask… Let’s go home.” He didn’t feel like telling Hazel about his engagement just yet…

The cab driver refused to take Hazel in, him smelling like garbage so he only picked up his food and they walked. What a day… Harry thought as he walked besides his brother. “I’m sorry Harry…” Hazel said quietly. “I was being stupid…. It’s just… People waste so many things, they don’t appreciate what they have… And… I’m sorry.” He repeated. “Don’t sweat it Haze, just… Don’t do it again. Please.” Hazel nodded. They walked silent a while Harry only thinking about his damn phone and how it didn’t ring. “Want to know why I stayed longer at work today?” Hazel asked suddenly cheerful. Harry only shrugged. “They needed to set up the theater for a surprise gig… Stiles had to play and his roadies were all out so I stayed to help… And Stiles thanked me afterwards! He even said he might take me as a roadie. Permanently! How awesome is that?” “Pretty awesome…” Harry said indifferently. His mind was half on Rhaenys and half wondering how could his genius brother be so stupid to think he would get anywhere carrying around other people’s equipment, he had this enormous talent and he was wasting it away. If mum was alive she would never allow it.

They had almost reached the house when the phone rang. Rhaenys! He picked it up with haste he never though possible. To his big delight she said she would come over in a bit. He made Hazel take a bath immediately and then proceeded to heat the spaghetti.

They changed into something a bit more comfortable, in order not to stain their clothes with the sauce and ate together. When they were finished he took her hand and led her to the room he and Hazel shared, he was about to break it to him to he is sleeping on the couch when Rhaenys placed her hand on his.TS3W_2015-10-24_16-25-31-08 For a moment he was distracted by the way light shone in that lovely ring of hers but then he met her eyes and she said: “No Harry. We are to be husband and wife, I don’t want us sleeping, or doing anything else in that tiny bed of yours. You are a grown man now.” He took a deep breath. She was right, as always. I’m so sorry mum… He whispered in his head and took his fiancee to her mother’s room.

Day 4

The next morning Harry woke up happy, even though it took him a minute to remember why. When he did he rolled to the other side of the bed with a smile but Rhaenys was not there. He got up hastily, and found his fiancee in the kitchen with his brother, they were sitting on the two sides of the counter drinking juice and laughing. It seamed Hazel just told a good joke. He felt a little stab of jealousy seeing that smile meant to someone else, even if it was his gay brother.

“Morning.” He said standing on the door and they both turned around to look at him. Rhaenys moved a strand of hair from her face, her ring flashing and said: “Morning sweetie.” “Morning bro, you could have told me you got engaged! You dog!” He smiled at them as he moved forward. “Well now you know.” Rhaenys got up to give him a kiss and said softly. “I need to go. There are still things to clear up at home. I’ll see you tonight.” Tonight? Harry wondered as he said goodbye. What the hell am I missing now? But then it hit him. Hazel’s bachelor party!

He had planed it last week, it was another attempt to get things back to normal and to make it up to his brother who had to put with his crap for a long time now. And what was better than a party? Haze loved those.

Thank to his future wife he still had enough time to get everything ready for tonight and to persuade Haze to take the night off.

Since Haze was not your every day bachelor, this was not a everyday bachelor party, he invited pretty much anyone he could thing off. Hazel really liked it. He was super hyped, he even put on some ridiculous top hat Harry didn’t even know he owned. Maybe he got it from the trash he thought but decided he didn’t want to know…

He even invited Hazel’s nTS3W_2015-10-24_16-38-54-26ew mother-in-law, Holly and sometimes during the night he saw Hazel gathering courage to talk to her. Maybe they will solve their issues tonight, he thought, all thanks to me.

But the real big event was the arrival of his dancers. This wasn’t an ordinary bachelor party, sure, but some cliches had to happen.

Their performance was crazy fun, especially for Hazel and thTS3W_2015-10-24_16-41-26-19e female part of the audience and his new stereo found a good use. Only for a brief moment did he think of his mother, wondering what she would say to the sight of half naked fireman dancing in her kitchen.

Hazel got to break out his dancing skills, he was the on dancing the most, he even flirted a bit with one of dancers, all standard party stuff. Harry himself had to jump in when for a while he thought something was happeHazelAndDancersning to Rhaenys when he heard her shriek but it turned out it was only Nina Caliente showering every one with champagne, they all had a good lough about it afterwards and it was all repeated later, in the yard after Dina Caliente gave a wonderful, heart warming toast to Hazel and then proceed to empty the bottle on his head since Hazel did not drink.TS3W_2015-10-24_16-45-49-14

It was a wild party, at least the bits Harry remembered.

/*Hope you like this one, I know I do. 🙂 It was fun both to play, and to write.*/

Browns – Round 3.1

Hello and welcome to round 3! As usually I start with the Browns, if you missed Round 2 you can read it here and here. If you have read it you will notice Harry and Hazel aged up to young adults so here are they now (I had better pictures from last time I played but I accidentally deleted them, forgetting I didn’t post them so I had to get them out of bed to take these):

HarryHazel Harry developed the Athletic trait and Hazel became Mooch,

Day 1

The days following his mother’s death were the hardest of Hazel’s life. It was hard to even think of the pain the loss left, the emptiness in his heart… The funeral was a nice one, most of the town attended, even Dina came.  She was his mother mentor, and just won the biggest elections of her life, even after the divorce and rumors of an affair with a convicted criminal. She hugged him, and kissed his cheek. “Anything you need Hazel, I’m here”. She whispered in his ear. Everyone else was pretty much the same, his mother’s friends, his sisters… In the days that closely followed he and Harry moped around the house, doing only what was necessary to stay alive, it was a difficult time…

BTS3W_2015-10-03_22-24-42-89ut after the initial mourning was over Hazel got on his feet, what his mother’s death made him realize was that life was precious and short so he took charge of his life. He worked harder to lose the extra weight, he got a job as a janitor at the local theater because he knew that’s where all the musicians hang out, and in a matter of days he found out that the most important person for the next stage of his life plans was Phaena Santoro. After Riam Gradle retired from the music world he was looking for the next best thing to manage and Hazel was sure that was him. He proposed to his long time boyfriend Donovan, he continued playing the guitar, even gave himself a more “rocker look”.

TS3W_2015-10-03_22-10-28-54He was a little worried for Harry though, he didn’t seem to be getting better, only mopier and more withdrawn.  They both stayed in their old room avoding their mother’s bigger one like it held the plague. Cocoa came and took all of mothers clothes and stuff, some she kept, some she gave to Rita, some to charity, he never asked about it. He only kept the notes he and mum passed around when she worked as a ghost hunter, he kept them under his pillow and read them almost every night before he went to sleep, it made things easier, to see her words written down, reading them he could almost hear her soothing voice.

He and Harry talked about moving once but his brother wasn’t really for it: “You really want to leave the only place you have ever called home, the house you grew up in?” And Hazel diTS3W_2015-10-24_15-53-30-05dn’t. But it was weird living here without mum. He wanted to do something. He contacted an architect out of Twinbrook to make renovation plans, he wanted to brake down the wall between the two bedrooms, make it a single room with staircases that lead to the second floor where they each had their own room and another bathroom but when he showed it to Harry he just shrugged. It was this indifference to everything that bothered Hazel the most.

When their mother first got sick, it was Harry who took charge of everything. It was the evening they were going to go to her Spooky Award Ceremony, she felt sick and couldn’t go and the next day Harry was taking her to the hospital to get checked up. It was Morgana Wolff herself who gave them the terrible news a week later. It was cancer. The very thought of that day made Hazel’s eyes burn. The next day she told Doctor Wolfe she wants to stay at home, there was no cure, she had months to live and she wanted to die at home.

Before she did that however she sat them both in the kitchen. She extended her hands, one to him and one to Harry and she looked at them with those fierce green eyes of hers. And she told them: “I know this is hard, for all of us, it will take time to accept it. I’ll give you time, as much as you need but I want to die here, at home, not at some cold hospital room but I know if I do that it will fall on the two of you too carry me to the bathroom when I get too weak… Your sisters are both busy, with kids of their own and I can’t count on them. Now  I know, it’s a big thing to ask… And think it through, if you would rather put me in the hospital and come by once a day it’s fine. It’s your decision.” She looked at them and Hazel felt as if he was going to cry. Harry however spoke firmly, and without hesitation. “We are here for you mum. All the way.” She pulled them in both for a hug and Hazel couldn’t keep in in anymore, he cried in to her shoulder and she held him tighter.

TTS3W_2015-10-03_22-26-11-11he first week or two wasn’t that bad. She was still pretty mobile, and it was easy to forget she was sick, that she was dying. Sometimes he would even catch her doing housework.

She was always a slender woman, but as time passed she was shrinking before their eyes and by the end Hazel could pick her up without barely feeling it.

His sister’s came, they even brought the girls. Mum would place each set of twins on the bed next to her, one on each side and talk to them. They didn’t know what was happening, they were still too young, at an age where they thought any disease can be cured…

She died peacefully one afternoon, a little over a year after she got sick, she just fell asleep and never woke. He just sat next to her and cried and Harry left the room hastily, he never wanted anyone to see him weak.

TS3W_2015-10-17_15-31-22-47Harry even had a hypochondriac phase, Hazel knew, but only because gossip tended to travel fast in a small town such as theirs. He was seen at one of Luther’s free clinics, it turns out he had a cold but thought he had cancer.

Hazel didn’t know how to help his big brother, he only hoped he would find the strength to help himself. Just this morning he found him meditating in the bathroom. “Why are you doing this here?” He asked annoyed, he really needed to pee. “Sometimes it is not possible to resist the calling of the greater power, and the need for inner peace.” Harry replied his eyes still closed, his legs crossed on the cold tiles. “Well neither is it possible to resist the call of nature, and the power of the empty bladder. Get lost.” Harry’s eyebrows narrowed and he gave him a dirty look. “Deal with that disaster on your chest Haze, you look like a fucking bear.” He got up from the floor and left. Hazel had no choice but to smile. Immature shit like that made him believe his brother was getting better. TS3W_2015-10-24_15-48-17-28

When he got out of the bathroom Harry was dressed and making breakfast. Hazel tried to eat less, and more healthier now that he was finally in shape but he dared not to say anything to Harry about how many calories waffles had.

“I have a gig at a party tonight.” Hazel said to break the awkward silence at the breakfast table. He also needed to distract himself from having another serving. “That’s cool.” Harry said too politely, it seamed to Hazel he was only half listening. “It’s at Minissa Gradle’s you should totally come, her daughters are hot I hear.” “I have a girlfriend.” Harry replied coldly. “And I’m busy tonight.” “Busy doing what?” Hazel asked annoyed. He really wanted to take Harry out a bit. “Dinner at Holly’s.” Holly Alto was their mother’s friend, she was also Donovan’s mum. “Donovan’s mum asked YOU to dinner? Not us?” “Yup.” Harry replied. Noticing the outraged look on Hazel’s face he tried to explain. “She wants to check up on me, mum’s anniversary is coming up and all that…” Hazel sighed. “Well that affects me too and beside I’m her future son in law doesn’t she care about that?” “Dunno. Maybe she doesn’t support gay marriage.” Harry shrugged but Hazel was sad. He really wanted Don’s family to accept him but he couldn’t explain that to Harry so he just ate the rest of the meal in silence. “Any talk of dates?” Harry asked a while later. “Well I want a big wedding.” Hazel said delighted he could talk to someone about this, he told his mum all the details in his head but his mum was gone. She would not come to his wedding, nor help him plan it. “And Donnie he wants to pay half, I don’t mind of course, I could use the cash. So we are waiting to get enough. He left his job at the spa, it was apparently not to challenging, he runs a daycare now.” Harry just nodded, lost in thought Hazel knew, that was Harry, he could get lost like that any minute.

TS3W_2015-10-24_15-49-44-20After breakfast Hazel was still hyped up on wedding talk so he called Dina and shared all the juicy details with her, she even promised to help him pick out a suit.

The party sucked. He played his part and went to mingle and he ended up trying to entertain Minissa’s son teenage son Jerome, but the boy apparently had no sense of humor and all of his jokes run flat, and he did have some good ones from the last party he attended.

Day 2

The next day was a Monday, and Hazel had to go to work. Being a janitor at the theater was much harder then he thought it would be but it did give him access to some big names in the music industry, firstly Phaena Santoro his intended target, but also Dina’s sister Nina who was a mayor music composer but there was also Stiles McGraw who had recently started saying hello to Hazel as he passed him by. It was not glamorous but it was a start, Hazel was sure that before long one of them would take notice of him long enough for him to show his mad guitar skills. If nothing he had learnt more about these three then he wished to know, for one he heard Phaena would never notice you if you didn’t out party her, or out drink her and both were leaning on impossible according to rumors around town, Nina would notice you if you were young, handsome and willing to sleep with her (too bad I was gay and engaged Hazel thought because Nina wasn’t bad looking) and Stiles… Maybe if you brought him coffeejil-nala-band and his music journals (payed with your own money of course). The biggest break in Hazel’s career for now however where the gigs Dina got him. Still Hazel didn’t want to give up and he was glad the same thing could be said for Harry.

When he got back home he found him painting in the yard, still in his pajamas even though it was dark for a long time now. He could tell he had been at it the whole day because they, along with his face and hands were all smeared with paint. “Hi bro!” he said loudly causing Harry to turn around startled. “It’s you.” He said annoyed. “Where have you been?” He asked demanding. “Work. At least one of us has to make an honest living…” Harry just frowned at him. “I would do the same if it wasn’t for certain smart asses annoying me.” Hazel smiled.”LoTS3W_2015-10-24_16-06-03-78ok Harry, I brought something for you… Maybe you’ll like it.” He said shrugging his shoulders while he handed his brother the box he kept behind his back. “Oh.” Harry was a bit startled. It was weird to see him without a smirk on his face, and a inappropriate, smart ass comment. “I had no idea… Sorry Haze…” “Don’t sweat! Just open it!” Hazel said his mouth breaking in a smile.

Harry loved the stereo he got him, Hazel only hoped his brother wouldn’t ask where exactly did he get it. He didn’t. He went to make them dinner, hot dogs, mum’s recipe again although she would flip if she knew they were making them an hour past midnight. While Harry cooked Hazel was scrolling band pages of all the local bands he knew hoping against hope one of them needed a skilled guitarist…

/* I’m not sure you’re gonna like this one, I’m not sure I like it myself but I needed to do the impact of Ebony’s death on the boys. And Hazel doesn’t have such an interesting life :P. Tomorrow is however a new update, and it’s Harry again which guarantees more action! */

A New Life, pt 1

Tomas sat on the bed and looked around the room, his room. It was strange looking at the bleak walls, the bleak carpet on the floor, and thinking of all of it as his room. His room was on the right, the same room he had slept his entire life, it was all green and blue and he shared it with his big brother up until he moved away, than it was just Tomas’ until he got married. He and his wife planned on redecorating the old nursery across the hall and using it as a bedroom but then his father died and everything changed.

Now some months later the two of them had finally moved to the big bedroom, now devoid of anything Harald’s. It was no longer his father’s bedroom it was Tomas’. He had to repeat it to himself over and over again, trying to make it real, trying to accept it. The same thing went to the house. His house.

Only his house was nothing like the house he grew up, he didn’t remember life before they moved here, he was a toddler, still in diapers when they carried him over the threshold and all his life since that moment he had lived here. And he knew the house he lived in, it was a house filled with life, laughter, cries, yelling, smell of food, smell of flowers. This house was nothing like that it was an empty shell,a ghost of that previous house, empty, reeking of memories of days long gone, memories of his siblings, memories of his parents…

There was only one more box in the room. It was a shoe box, a big shoe box, one that probably once contained his father’s boots. This box was not packed by Tomas nor his new wife, he found it in his father’s closet, in the back of the shoe drawer. He supposed his father kept it there to hide it. Most of his clothes was washed and ironed, and than placed in the appropriate drawers by Hannah so his shoe drawer was the only drawer none of them ever opened. 

He lifted the box from the floor and gently placed it on the bed. He took a deep breath and then took the lid off. The box was stacked to the top with old family photos.  Once they were like any happy family, snapping away, preserving memories as photographs that they kept in old family albums they would look at once and while, laughing at each other, telling stories about those photos, reliving those happy days.  And then when things had started falling apart his father started removing those photos one by one, like trying to erase the past, to escape the once happy memories until eventually whole albums disappeared and Tomas assumed his father had them destroyed so he wouldn’t have to ever face what they once had and what was forever lost. 

Tomas slowly took the photos out, one by one, and tried to spread them on the bed in some sort of chronological order, he went to the photos of his parents getting married, Alyssa as a baby, Hannah as a baby, Andrew as a baby, himself… Looking at his mother’s soft smile, his father’s stern face, always serious Alyssa, goofy Andrew and Hannah he saw his whole childhood flashing in front of him in waves of memories… 

It was a happy childhood, Tomas being the youngest of four children with loving siblings that were always protective of him. He watched the picture of the six of them in front of this very same house, probably the day they moved in. His father in a green short sleeved shirt, his mother next to him, smiling, with him, little Tomas in her arms, Alyssa, her face tied in a ponytail, Andrew and Hannah, all clean in clean clothes, obviously just out of the car, no time to get into trouble…

He flashed forward, him, first day of school, his father had took this picture, he remembered, he was wearing a light blue shirt, same haircut as Andrew wore, he insisted on it, his little backpack on his back, and his mother’s arm protectively around him. Hannah and Andrew tried to jump in the photo but he just saw two smudges, roughly their shapes. He could picture Alyssa standing next to their dad scowling. He could not help smiling. 

His parents wanIted all of them to be very serious about school so from that day on, almost every school day was the same, just after school the four of them would sit together and work on their homework, helping each other, well mostly it was Alyssa, the most serious and responsible of them who would finish first and monitor the rest of them, helping when needed. Even though she tried to be strict and serious it would often turn into one, or all of them laughing at one thing or the other, and all of them trading stories of their days, teasing each other. Afterwards their dad would come home, he worked various jobs before being a firefighter, and they would all sit down together and eat a delicious meal his mother made. She didn’t work, and loved cooking so they always ate well, and also it was an opportunity to spend more time together. 

On weekends their father would teach Tomas and Andrew about working with tools and gardening. He had a nice garden, with apples, tomatoes, lettuces, grapes and onions and Tomas liked spending his time there, when his father was there weeding and digging, and when he wasn’t there playing with the sprinklers.

There was a picture of him and dad in the garden, this one was taken from the back porch, probably by mum, or maybe Andrew. Tomas didn’t even know such a photo existed, you couldn’t recognize them, they were both squatting in the garden, their backs turned but it made him surprisingly teary eyed so he moved on.

The next photo was of Andrew and his best friend Cocoa Brown. She was always a wild child, much like Andrew himself but you could never tell from this picture. She was always a pretty little girl, with her long dark hair and slightly slanted but exotic green eyes. She was wearing a flower pattern dress and smiling at the camera. Andrew was smiling too and Tomas couldn’t help but wonder what kind of mischief were they planning that day. 

Cocoa was spending as much time at their house as them, she would sometimes come with Andrew right after school, other times she would come after they had finished their homework and when she didn’t come Andrew would go over to her house which was just across the street. The two of them were best friends, and were inseparable back then. Tomas who wanted nothing more than to be just like his big brother would tag along with them as much as he could, or more precisely, as much as they allowed him.

Time went on, all of them grew and things started to change, well the correct term would be, things started to fall apart but Tomas didn’t know it then, none of them did…