In Memorandum / Steven Patchett

I remember the disappearing car. Waving in the hope that you could still see me in the rearview mirror. Standing by the gate as the centre of my world rocked and bounced and everything important stretched and tore away.

Watching the shadows ebb and flow in the ceiling’s peeling paint. The darkness of the dormitory. Listening to the sounds of the other children, muffled sobs, quiet whispers for absent mercy. Desperately clinging to the threadbare comfort of blankets as thin as paper which smelt of stagnant water.

Waiting for you in the cold of the winter morning. My hands turned blue. I shivered until I broke. The long avenue remained empty of everything but frozen expectations.

The phone calls when you couldn’t bring yourself to say my name, stumbling over excuses as to why you never showed. Your stories grew grim with repetition.

The letter and the weary sadness in the eyes of the social worker, who hated to crush dreams. Bundling hopes in black cloth and committing them to the flame.

The room smelled of fresh paint and had a view from the highest floor. The nervous couple, who acted so confidently, held each other tightly when they thought I wasn’t looking. While I, awkward in mismatched socks, struggled to hope this would be better.

I remember sewing invisible stitches to mend the tears inside.

Steven Patchett is an Engineer, Father and Writer in the North East of England. His Flash Fictions have been published in Ellipsis Zine, The Cabinet of Heed and Lunate Fiction. He can be found on Twitter, being encouraging. @StevenPatchett7

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