" Gosh, your seats will be ruined." I said as I combed my hair with my my hand and started the ignition.
" They've been made of leather for a reason." He grinned and put on the heater.
" Just hope I don't crash your car." I chuckled and pulled the car on the road.
He nodded and instantly leaned his head back on the headrest. He stared out as the raindrops fell on the the window and windshield. I tried hard not to look at him but concentrate on the road. I turned up the volume of radio.
" It's been a long day,
Without you my friend,
And I'll tell you all about it
When I see you again.
" We've come a long way from where we've began,
And I'll tell you all about it,
When I see you again,"
I recognised the song and slowly began to sing along and thumped on the steering wheel. I looked from peripheral view at Dexter but his eyes were closed and his head was leaning against the window.
"when I see you again."
I felt him shift in his seat uncomfortably. I looked at his hands as they were clenched so tightly his knuckles turned white.
He sat up and instantly indicated me to pull up. I put on the indicator and quickly stopped the car down the pavement.
silence spread through the car other than the raindrops clicking on the car, covering the windshield with water.
" Are you okay?" I asked as the silence was killing me but he kept staring ahead on the road. Finally he sighed and leaned his head back on the headrest and closed his eyes.
" It brings back memories. "
" Do you want to talk about it?" He stayed still for a minute then opened his eyes, while staring at the roof of the as car and whispered in a hoarse voice:
" It was raining the day...they passed away." It felt like it had taken him a huge effort to say it out loud. I looked at him confusingly.
" My parents." He closed his eyes tight. I felt a lump stuck in my throat. No Dexter. Don’t say anything else.
" I'm sorry...for your loss." I squeezed his hand.
He opened his eyes and glanced at me.
“ You knew. Didn’t you?”
“ Yeah. Dad told me.”
I didn't say anything else because I knew how it feels to be pitied. My doctor and everyone in the hospital give me those stares every time I visit.
Another silence began.
" How old?" I asked as I looked on the road now empty.
" Ten." Even imagining anything like this haunted my dreams.
" We were gone for a holiday to Hawaii. The day we were getting back...on our way it started raining. Mom kept telling dad to slow down but he had a conference to attend in San Fransisco so he kept accelerating until we...we crashed." His voice cracked and he closed his hand into a first and pressed it against his mouth.
" Dex...Dexter you don't have to tell me." I looked at him already breaking down.
" No , I want to." So I let him continue as I placed my hand over his hand in his lap. He let me hold it as he narrated the story.
" While we were stuck in the car, the people gathered to pull us out. But there was no time as we were barely whispering. It was impossible to save everyone. Someone had to give up. And you know what...my mom did. She pushed me and Celeste out while she could've saved herself. Dad...he was long gone. " He was crying now. I could see his tears in the blur of traffic's headlights, sliding down his eyes.
" But mom...she was alive. I could sense it but she never even made an attempt to get out," He glared at the traffic angrily. " instead she backed away and put her hand on dad's as she...closed her eyes." More tears escaped his eyes as his resentment mixed his sorrows.
I touched his shoulder gently and he scooted closer so that his face now rested on my thighs. I slowly stroked my hand through his locks. I smelled pineapple shampoo in his locks.
" It's all my fault." He began to hiccup. " if I hadn't been with them, maybe...maybe they would have been alive." He was shaking badly now.
" No, it's not your...fault, Dexter." I whispered back.
" shhh it's okay." I kept mumbling.
" She would've saved herself, If I wasn't there." His voice was now low. I patted his back and calmed him down.
Though he had calmed down a little but he was still crying, I could feel his tears on my thighs. But I tried not to concentrate on that as his presence was still intoxicating.
" She would've still done the same, Dexter." I said.
I held him in the darkness as the traffic passed across us and rain ruthlessly gushed down. I held him for almost half an hour in which I memorised his features. I held him as I recalled what he had told me and tried to put myself in his spot. I held him as I stopped myself from crying out loud so he wouldn't get all panicked. I held him till nearly all the traffic died down and rain prepared to take a rest.
" Mom- let- me-..ut...Kil-ed her...se-" His voice was now slow and faint as he began to snort. Had he fallen asleep? His face felt firm in my lap.
As I looked at the traffic lights and started the ignition I couldn't help whispering,
" Your mom lost her life the second your dad passed away. She loved her to an extent she couldn't let him go alone. She had to stay...for him."
This time I didn't wipe the tears away that fell from my face onto his cheeks.