It was a cold and rainy day—the saddest conditions for a funeral. After standing around the grave of the beautiful Sara Givens, the burial ceremony was over and everybody went to their cars to get out of the pouring rain. Everybody except Mark Givens stood there as if in a haze, unaware of what was going on, who was there, and who was trying to talk to him. He couldn’t help but feel as if somebody was trying to pull him away from Sara’s grave.
He looked down at his arm, to see a set of small, slim fingers wrapping around his arm, pulling on him. Mark looked up into a pair of dark violet eyes. The haze began to dissipate.
Little baby Kendall looks like she’s yelling at me. What is she saying? He thought looking down at her.
She kept pulling on his arm and yelling, “Mark!” “Mark! We need to go—the rain is coming down harder!”
“Kendall, what are you doing here?” Then, Kendall looked into Mark’s beautiful sea-green eyes of pain and suffering before grabbing his face to get his full attention.
“Mark, we need to go home before we get drenched, OK?” Mark shook his head to clear the fog.
“Okay let’s go,” he replied while looking into Kendall’s eyes and laying his hand on her cheek. They both started to walk away from the grave. Kendall then reached down and grabbed hold of Marks’ hand once more. God, what a homecoming she’s come home to—her best friend and older stepsister gone forever. She’s hasn’t seen her for five years since her wedding to Mark Givens. He was the love of Sara’s life, and she was his. However, he didn’t even know what he was doing, and it broke her heart to come home to this and the man she’d loved since she was eleven years old.
God, Sara! Why did you have to leave him and us? Kendall thought to herself.
Kendall woke up in bed with the sun shining through her window. Today should have been the funeral. It’s a beautiful day; Sara would have loved it. I wonder how Mark is doing? Getting up out of bed, Kendall went over to her vanity shelf and picked up a picture of her and Sara. Mark and Sara were a couple all through high school. The head cheerleader and the captain of the football team, everybody loved them, and everybody wanted to be them; especially the girls. Sara, with her long midnight black hair and sky-blue eyes—she was perfect, beautiful and sweet. She had everything plus Mark, with his charcoal-black hair, well-built body, and eyes the color of the sea. Kendall compared her wavy, medium-length, flame red hair and dark violet eyes to Sara’s features, pondering her own beauty for a moment. Setting the picture down, she said her goodbyes. “Love you Sis and Bestie, I’ll miss you, and I’ll watch over Mark.” She then turned away and headed toward the kitchen.
“Hello dear, how are you this morning?” greeted Kendall’s mother, Mary Michaelson, after hanging up the phone. Mary then walked over to the coffee pot, smiled at her and hugged her tightly.
“I’m okay,” Kendall said, grabbing a cup, which Mary promptly took from her, pointing toward the kitchen table.
“I’ll get it, and you go sit down,” she told her daughter. Sitting down across from her mom, Kendall gazed at her beauty. Mary, fifty-years-old, wouldn’t have believed it if she hadn’t known her; she didn’t look a day over thirty-five, with her short blonde hair with streaks of silver and her forest green eyes. If you looked in them, you’d feel as if you were in a forest.
“Thanks, Mary,” Kendall said, picking up her cup and sipping it. She looked over the rim and saw moisture building up in her eyes. Grabbing her hand, Kendall asked, “Mary, how are you this morning?”
“I’m fine dear. It’s hard. I’ll be fine,” her mother replied, placing her other hand on Kendall’s. Getting up from the table to place her cup in the sink, Mary asks, turning around, leaning on the sink.
“Oh yeah, have you heard from Mark?”
“No. Why?” Kendall said, setting her cup down.
“Because Steven called this morning saying he hadn’t heard from him,” Mary answered. Then, Kendall got up to take her coffee cup to the sink.
“Has he tried going over there?”
“Yeah. He says nobody answers. He says he tried calling and banging on the door. Mark is there because his car is still there,” Mary spoke with worry in her eyes.
“Hmm. That’s odd. Well, I haven’t seen him since the funeral. He didn’t even talk to me; he acted like he was surprised to see me.”
“Well yeah, you haven’t seen each other for five years since their wedding,” Mary reminded her daughter.
“Yeah. Well, I can go stop by there if you want, maybe I can get in.” Kendall said.
“Oh yes, that would be wonderful,” Mary replied clapping her hands together.
“Well, I’ll go get ready for the day.” Kendall said turning to go.
“Hold on a second, wait,” Mary said, rushing to the fridge and rifling through it. “Take this to him, and this and this…” She then piled Kendall with bowls of leftover stews and soups. Kendall then turned toward the table to set it all down.
“Okay let me go get ready first,” she said. Setting all the food on the table, she left the kitchen.
Knocking on the door of Mark and Sara’s place, contemplating what to do, Kendall had been holding a bag of food for ten minutes, and still no answer. Well, I guess I can start yelling like a crazy person, she thought. She knocked again and yelled, “Mark! Mark! Open up I know you’re there. Your car is in the driveway! Open up!” Banging and kicking now, she exclaimed, “Dammit Mark. Open up! My hands are full of food for you!” Nothing still. “Well, hell maybe…” She looked down at the doorknob. “Maybe,” she said again as she turned the doorknob.
Walking through the darkened house, she noticed that the blinds were closed and the lights were off. She switched on the torch on her phone for some light. “There we go. Now, where is the kitchen?” Finding the kitchen, she turned on the light in the kitchen and put the food down on a small space on the counter that was not all cluttered and dirty. Scanning the kitchen, Kendall noticed Chinese takeout and pizza boxes everywhere, dishes in the sink, and garbage all over the floor. Shaking her head in disbelief, she said to herself, Oh Mark, you poor man. This mess just won’t do. Sara would be furious if she saw this. Heading to the sink she got out some cleaning supplies and began to stack dishes and put dish soap in the sink. Next, she put the dirty dishes in to let them soak for a while. Then, she started on the stove and gathered up the empty food boxes covering the counter. After clearing a surface, she opened the fridge door. Nothing! Just milk, butter, and eggs, and, of course, beer, she exclaimed. Getting the food out of the bag, she placed it in the fridge.
After cleaning as much as she could, Kendall stood up and stretched. Well, that’s done. It only took me, what, twenty minutes? Looking around, she smiled to herself before heading out to the living room. Now, let’s see how bad the living room is. Just like the kitchen, garbage, food boxes, and empty beer bottles were everywhere. She went over toward the couch and gasped—there he was. Mark, with his charcoal black hair, which she would love to run her fingers through, and his strong, chiseled face. He looks so at peace right now. I should start cleaning in here then. He won’t wake up any time soon with all the empty beer bottles around. Turning around, Kendall headed to the kitchen again to get cleaning supplies. Hesitantly, she looked over at Mark and exclaimed aloud, “He’s going to need some food.”
She went over to the fridge and took out a pot of soup. She put it in a clean pan, turned the stove on low, and warmed it up. While stirring the soup at the stove, Kendall wondered if Sara had ever done this for him; probably not. She’s not a motherly type of person, she thought to herself. A few minutes passed, and another thought popped into her mind. There, it’s okay. I should go wake him up as he’s going to want food soon. Well, maybe not want, but he’s going to need it. She then headed back into the living room.