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A PRIVATE CAR was arranged to take the family home.

It was a mournful, melancholic drive. Everyone sat in despair, sullen and absent-minded, like a gathering of living corpses or a funeral procession.

After undergoing intensive care and spending weeks at the ER, the family was still in shock and mentally devastated by the tragedy. The accompanying loss was unquantifiable and significantly grave.

And irreplaceable.

Mom was wrapped in cast. With a botched jaw and nose, she was still unable to speak properly, not without experiencing a measure of pain. Her broken right leg would take several months to heal properly. And even then, she would most certainly have a limp.

Dad, on the other hand, would require a miracle to get back on his feet. That much fact was obvious to everyone, even to him. There’d been a massive injury to his head that caused blood to rush into his brain. With a swollen skull and ruptured vertebrae, Dad had been knocked out at the instant of the crash, and remained comatose for two straight weeks.

Alan’s condition, even though grievous as well, was reasonably better, compared to his parents’. His limbs were intact and the pain was abating. The swellings in other parts of his body had reduced considerably, but the stitches and widespread bruises made him out like a modest version of Frankenstein’s monster.

But much of Alan’s agony was internal and psychological. His world had been unexpectedly altered in a most drastic way and he failed to comprehend why that was so, because it could have been avoided. It was inconceivable.

His body could heal. But never his mind.

Oh, it shattered his mind to think that, at that very moment he and his parents were going home, Timothy and Rachel were gone for good. Two innocent lives. Wasted...!


Alan Prince turned his head sideways and rested it in the glass forlornly as he stared out the window with a blank, distant expression. Tears began to streak down his cheek.

As he kept staring out the window at nothing in particular, a vile, unfamiliar yet frightening disdain for his parents began to brew in his spirit like an unwholesome broth.

His gaze shifted to his parents momentarily.

It was their fault, he told himself.

Their fault.

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