Forever Is A Long Story

By E.E.Lewis

Mystery / Romance

Truthful Answers

"Henry, I also found this." Jo held up a black and white photo of Henry and his family, clear to see that it had not originated from this century. She had a stern voice, clearly not tending to leave Henry's front doorstep anytime soon. She wanted answers and her partner was the only one who had them. He had been lying to her a few times, and had tried to mislead the investigation of the two murders and the stolen cursed dagger. Something was up and nothing was going to stop her from obtaining whatever she needed to know.

Henry Morgan felt his heart tighten, she found a key piece of information that would indeed reveal his unholy cursed secret; his immortality. Although Adam was (for now) out of his life, another bump in his infinite one emerged. He had two choices, two paths to take. The doctor of death needed to choose wisely, but his decisions were fogged by a sense of insecurity and nervousness. If he told Jo his whole life story, would she walk away? Throw him into an asylum? Take away his job? All negative thoughts entered his brain, not thinking of the good that could come from him telling her.

Abe nudged his shoulder with an understanding tone. "Henry, tell her." Listening to his son, he gave in, ready to reveal his true hidden self. Breathing in a gasp of air, he then exhaled fully. He looked at Abe, then back at the awaiting woman in front of him. "It's a long story..." He stepped back, letting her in the antique's shop.

"Why don't the three of us sit down? And, I'll put the kettle on." Abe said, pushing Henry and Jo on the couch next to each other. In the eyes of every British person (or son of) tea was the best solution to every problem. Family death; they serve tea. Failing grades; they serve tea. Heartbreaking breakup; they serve tea. It was like a tradition.

As the kettle boiled on the stove, the couple on the couch sat in silence awaiting Abe to come back. Jo just sat there and stared at the picture, thousands of ideas of infinite possibilities swarmed in her head. She could not fathom what Henry was about to tell her. He being immortal was positively not on the top of her list. More in the middle. She did not know what to think, so she was waiting for Henry to tell her the truth.

Henry, on the other hand, kept staring at her and the photo. He gulped, trying to rearrange his life, thinking of the best way to tell her of his curse, and her believing him. He did not want to lose her, the feelings he had for her had been growing slowly for the past few months, not stopping at the least. Now that he had come to terms with Abigail's death and let go, he felt like a new stage of his life had just commenced. Hopefully one without remorse or regrets.

Coming back with three tea cups filled to the brim with a sweet aroma of orange fruit tea, Abe entered the salon, sitting in the recliner in front of the partners, crossing his legs and leaning forward, knowing it was Henry's job to do the talking and the explaining.

All eyes were on Henry, more importantly Martinez's. Her eyes flooded with intrigue and puzzlement. "Well, Henry? I think it's time for the truth to reveal itself." She said, rather in an unintended whisper, like she was afraid of what she might hear. Not sure of herself for the first time in her life.

"Go on Dad tell her." Abe pushed, making Jo flinch when she heard Abe call Henry dad.

"Whoa...hold on a" She asked with a tone louder than expected from her.

"Yes...well...Jo meet my son Abraham. I adopted him after the Second World War." The medical examiner explained, with a rather proud voice.

The detective's eyes widened, pupils dilated. "Your son? He's your...s-son?" Her voice rather shaky. Trying to figure out what he was saying. "But that would mean..."

"Yes I was alive in the 1940s, and yes the photo is real." Before he could go on, Jo put her finger on his lips, telling him to be quiet for a few moments. She started to breathe heavily, running her hand through her hair.

"So let's get this straight. You have a son almost twice your age, you were alive during World War II and there is the photo to prove it." She ran it over and over again. Nothing made sense, but at the same time made perfect sense. She removed her finger, showing him to go on.

"Yes that's I am going to tell you something crazy, unbelievable, but please believe me. I was actually born on September 17th, 1779 and I cannot die. Every time I do, I resurface in the closest body of water. I am not and never will be a grave digger and for years I have studied death to end my tragic curse. I lie to save myself from being turned into a human experiment and being deemed psychotic. Truthfully, I never wanted to lie to you, but could never let myself tell you because I had not forgiven myself yet for my dead wife's death. I thought I didn't need anybody else to care of me aside from Abraham for the rest of my life, but I was wrong because I met you and everything changed." He said, revealing all he had been keeping bottled up for ages. He sighed, relieved that his feelings came out. Now he was waiting for Jo's reaction, the one that had haunted him throughout his dreams. The nightmare that showed him of her rejection.

"Fine." She simply stated crossing her arms and sitting back.

"Fine? That's all you say? I have just told you that I am an immortal and you agree and say fine!" He exclaimed, not seeing that coming. His released the anger originating from his frustration.

"What else am I going to say? I am a detective. I look at the facts and everything fits. The photo, your close relationship with Abe, your suicidal tendencies, your skinny dipping in the lake, your vast knowledge on the past, and the fact that I have enormous astonishing faith in you." She remarked, putting her hand on his shoulder affectionately. "I believe you, so accept that. I am not going anywhere. So, please, no more secrets ok?"

Henry felt a weight lift off his shoulders, like it had been there for quite some time. It still baffled him how the woman sitting next to him could be so serene, he just looked at it as a miracle. "I agree, no more lying. I promise." Getting himself back to his relaxed self, he knew thousands of question were coming. It pleased him, being able to share everything he experienced with someone other than Abe. Most parents never want to share everything with their sons.

"I suppose you have many questions that need answers Jo. Go ahead, ask me anything." He simply stated, compassion mixing together with his British accent.

Jo shook her head, declining politely his offer. She pressed her thumbs to her temples, appearing to have lost her relaxed composure from a few seconds previous. "Not now Henry, I-I just need some time to think. I do have many questions, but I don't feel like asking anything right now. Don't be wrong, I am quite angry at you for lying to me all this time, but I don't want to talk now because this is a lot to take in." She sighed out of exhaustion, her brain was working overtime, trying to wrap everything around it.

The detective took a sip of her tea slowly, in deep thought. Henry remained quiet, with a hand resting on her knee, letting her have all the time in the world, something he always had on his side. Alas, however, she did not. He rubbed his prickly chin, taking his hand off his partner's knee, wallowing in the same dazed state as the woman beside him.

"I will leave you two alone." Abe quickly got up, bringing the empty china teacups with him to the kitchen. When everything got quiet, he knew it was time for him to leave. His father and detective Martinez needed to talk a few more things through, alone. Without any bystanders.

"I can leave too, give you a moment alone like you asked." Henry started to push himself off the couch, uncrossing his legs, but go pushed back down by Jo pulling on his sleeve.

"No, stay." She took a deep breath and straitened her hair. "I'm fine now." She replied, the sides of her mouth slightly inclining upwards. Henry Morgan always appreciated her smile, even the ones slightly noticeable. "So, what do we do now? Just continue on with our jobs, pretending like nothing happened?" She asked, with a worrying glare.

"We will continue to work together Jo, but not pretending like nothing happened. You know my secret and I don't want things to go as they were before."

"You're right Henry." She got up from the couch. "I don't either. Secrets and lies are never healthy. It's getting late, I haven't slept in over twenty four hours, and I have to work in the morning. We'll talk tomorrow."

"Understandable, let me show you out." He put his hand on Jo's back, leading her out into the night.

"Good night Henry. I'm glad you told me." She looked up into his eyes, placing a kiss on his cheek, and walked towards her car (which she had parked down the street) waving.

"Goodnight Jo." He waved back, feeling like a piece of his soul had just came back. He needn't and didn't care of what was to come because all he could do right then was smile. He closed the shop's door, locking up, and went into the kitchen where Abe was reading the New York Times, glasses pulled foreword to the tip of his nose.

"So what happened when I left?" Abe asked straight away, not looking up from his leisurely reading.

"Come on Abraham, you were listening. A father knows when their son is listening in on their conversations." He laughed cheerfully.

"Even if I did eavesdrop, it sounds by your energetic attitude that Jo took it quite well. You have lipstick on your cheek by the way." He replied chuckling whilst Henry wiped away the evidence.

"It was just a friendly goodnight kiss, putting everything we have just been through, I think it was appropriate." He fixed his scarf around his neck, always doing that when he felt nervous or embarrassed. Sometimes even proud. This time he was experiencing all at the same time.

"Friendly, ha! Keep telling yourself that dad." He teased.

"Well, have a nice night Abe, I'm turning in for the night." Henry said, heading for his room.

"Sweet dreams" Abe grinned, looking up from the newspaper for a second. Henry only smiled, closing the bedroom door behind him.

As he lay in his bed, under the comfortable bed sheets, wearing his favorite silk blue striped pyjamas, his eyes didn't want to shut. It wasn't everyday he told one of his closest friends his long kept secret. He began to think about the future, worrying that one day he would have to let go of Abe, and eventually Jo. Then his world would crumble before him, no one else to call family.

He smacked his face hard with both palms, he was not letting anymore depressing images to enter his mind. Right now, he was happy, and that was all that mattered. He hoped Jo was having less trouble sleeping than him.

Sleeping didn't want to welcome her. She still couldn't comprehend how being immortal could even be real. It surmounted the level of normal and stretched into the supernatural alongside fate and destiny.

She knew her opinion on things would change drastically now. Especially her assessment on Henry's extravagant personality. It had always seemed odd when he started explaining numerous facts and observations that could only surmount to a person who had been living long enough to gain all that vast knowledge and experience. It was then she wanted to ask all her questions; when Henry wasn't there. She closed her eyes, making herself comfortable, knowing she would see him in the morning at work. There would surely be another murder by then.

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