I just woke up with an ache on my right shoulder blade, where the gun was pressed so firmly against.
We were walking the streets of Italy- Italy of all places- together. It was the day you, your wife, and your two daughters were dreading. You had gotten yourself in a pickle that this time you and your charming boyish ways couldn’t talk your way out of. After 53 years of being a somewhat superman, warding off all the evils a man who was so “daring” (to say the least) & should have been victim to years before, you finally found the night it would all catch up.
As the day went on we pretended we didn’t know; we acted like it really wouldn’t happen. We were avoiding going back to where mommy parked the car on that corner down that street all day, because of what we feared would be waiting.
It was an August night, & a long walk back to the car. Maybe we did that on purpose, looking back- maybe we decided to stray so far from that street so we had all the time possible left to stay with you.
There was a picture taken of you and I at the restaurant, before we left. It was the best one of us yet.
It started to hit me the most the closer we got to the car, but I didn’t cry. I just said “daddy, hold me.” You went to put your arm around me but I said “no, hold me like a baby; carry me on your side.” And you picked me up and held me like so, like we were both 20 years younger.
We got to the deserted corner in this Italian town at dark. The streets were empty and quiet, and so were the 4 of us. I whispered, “daddy, he’s gunna be here waiting for you, I know it.” And you whispered back, in the same quiet and calm voice you used to use when finishing up a bedtime story from Mother Goose Story Book: “don’t worry.”
There the man came, like clockwork, from behind. My first thought? “He’s attractive.” My second thought, “is he ready to kill me first?”
I clutched onto my father, as he still held me at his side, so that there was no way a bullet would reach him without reaching me too. I covered his head, his back, all the spots that really mattered. The man came close, and found a spot anyway, on his right shoulder blade.
He pressed the muzzle up to my fathers back.
And that’s when I woke up and felt the pain on my own body.
Sometimes, no matter how physically fit a man may be, no matter how many power lifting competitions he has won, or high school track records of his that still haven’t been broken, no matter how powerful a hope a man has that the success he dreams will be his as he sails lonely seas alone, or how deep in the ocean he has reached in search of a treasure that his faith guides him to, no matter how many cigars he smokes, how many “friends” he knows who can “help” him, no matter how much a man has strived and accomplished in his life to provide sometimes he just needs the love and protection of his daughter to keep him carrying on. After all, what does he need to fight for, if he didn’t have his girls by his side?
4,322 total views, 2 views today