"A Lucky Encounter".
"Sorry, sir, you dropped that". said a boy to a drunk old unknown man, who promptly threw such object away, crashing more than it had broken the first time he dropped it. It may not have been intentional, but ... who would care? That bottle was really going to be hidden under the snow, and his old man's nose was red in contrast to the blue cold, he didn't even care about the drops of liquid that once warmed his throat.
Only one person cared about it, but no one else cared about him. Even with his hand slightly injured with a dash of glass, he scraped it against his previously ripped coat from a previous fight. Boys don't cry, he thought. Or he tried to think, since the streets whistled a cold, deadly wind that would freeze even the most intelligent neurons. That kid was in trouble.
Should I go home?, he thought. My dad would probably beat me up for running away. It was because of a bottle ... yes, it was because of a bottle. A few inches from his head, missing a few hair strands and still smelling a little beer (now in tiny snowflakes), that boy walked the streets with no reason to live. Why come home? They must be feeling a lot better without me. That bottle ...
He looked down at his shoes that were put on quickly, as if he were a marathon runner chasing his prize ... freedom from suffering and humiliation. They were not tied; they trailed across the snow, as if it were a clue to Death's enconter. Maybe I'm not wanted anymore, he thought. Maybe I'm a mistake in his plans. Mom would look a lot prettier if I hadn't been sprouted during a Christmas party. What an ungrateful gift my father received, a bastard who forced him to look for a job and support me. One more mouth to feed, in this world of misery where the rich always get richer, and the poor are always forced to work to maintain the system. Ah, that bottle ...
Your head still hurts. But how did it hurt, if the bottle hadn't even hit me? .".. unless ...", his thought flies farther than a dry leaf that managed to escape the hands of Autumn. Unless the bottle really hit me ... "take that away!!", those words start to echo in your mind. A female cry. A smell of sweat and beer in the air. Now he remembers. "No, there's no way back", he concludes. He still doesn't know the reason nor he cares anymore. But where to go? His youthful mentality did not give him full capacity for critical thinking, he decides to go beyond his miserable life. "There's a pond next to me", he thinks, "no one will miss me anyway".
Walking near the almost frozen pond, he knows what to do, but can't remember exactly why he was doing it. Memories are sparse, and although he still remembers the door slamming behind him, and voices shouting for him to return... a slap sound echoed. A female cry. A smell of sweat and beer in the air. "That bastard!", he shouted for nobody; his scream was muffled by the harsh winds. But one extra voice echoed along with him. Sounds like a cry. A cry from someone whose tail was stuck in a wooden fence door that was abruptly closed by the same wind that blocked his vent. Perhaps the sound that came to his head, returning his memory to that fateful moment, was from such a door being slammed.
A poor puppy, with a fate not as lucky as his, struggled to free itself from its momentary suffering. Sharp howls that could cause despair to anyone. What a bad person, Fate, to allow such suffering to happen! With a quick movement, and extra care not to be bitten by an enraged animal, he manages to unlock that door and release his tail. The damage is not exaggerated, as there is no break, but a huge wound shows the suffering that the poor dog caused. "I know of your suffering," says the boy, running his hand slowly over his head to remove the little snow that had accumulated. Exhausted from his struggle, the poor dog finally surrenders and lies down, breathing deeply.
"I also have a pain", said the boy, petting the dog's head.
The puppy looks up to him, and as a gesture of thanks, gives his hand a small lick.
"I know a good vet that could help you", he said. And, with extra strength, he was able to hold up that little puppy in his arms and walk. It's no longer snowing, and the wind was now calm and silent, as if someone found an inner peace.
"Ding, ding, ding", said the bell at the door. The first to see him was the receptionist, who as soon as he saw him, ran towards him, as if he thanked God that his prayers had been answered.
"You could take a look at~", his speech was cut off by the receptionist's worried look.
"Where have you been? Your dad was totally worried!! He even called the police after you!"
"... what?" he murmured. "My father ... that bastard!"
"Bastard? What are you talking about?", she said. "He was worried about you! How come you run away after slipping and hitting the table? I'll call your father you're here, while that... can somebody please perform vet care"
"Table?", even the dog looked up to know for an answer, as saying "I'll stay here with you".
No vet was able to take the dog away from his arms; he growled for everybody trying to do the same. In his mind, maybe some monologue was running along with "I won't let you alone, buddy, you were the only one that cared about me, and I'll stay with you, always!"
And then, while his dog is taken away, distracted with all those toys the receptionist brought to him...
.... his memory came back.
"Dinner is served!", said Mom, with a sweet voice. You could imagine her soft voice of butter commercials. Her father, on the other side, had just come home after a horrible day at work; his hands holds a bottle of beer.
"You can't imagine," he began his monologue, "today my boss made me sign huge paperwork, and ... AACK!!!", He steps on a cart that was on the floor, and almost flies near the television that was three meters away. "Damn those scattered toys ..."
Going down the stairs, two kids comes down stairs, Johnny, with 4yo, and Ethan, 12yo.
"What did I said about toys on the floor?", The father goes directly to the 4yo.
".. never let them... on the floor", the kid looks down.
"So, take that away", he commands; the kid makes a boo-boo face, but starts collecting your toys. "So, Ethan, how's school today?"
Ethan looks a bit annoyed. His coat has a rip near the shoulder.
"Nothing", he said, more in silence. In fact, he had another fight at school, but he didn't want to talk about. It's like he's trying to be strong for himself, keeping everything inside him, like a soda pop ready to burst.
"What's this rip in your new coat?", the father asked. "You love this coat~"
"I said it's nothing, dad... I just fell, that's it", he tries to divert the subject again.
"Ethan! Is there anything wrong?", ask the father worried, while putting the beer on the table.
"NO, nothing wrong!!", he shouted. His mind was completely defused by the school stress, as he walks to the dinner table.
But sadly, Johnny didn't had time to clear the entire floor. One toy was missing.
Ethan step on it, and his head hit really hard in the table, pouring part of the beer that was still on the bottle.
"Ethan!! Ethan!!", his mom shouted, while he was on the floor, now with a broken bottle alongside it. She raises his head trying to get any response: none is given. "Call the doctor!", she shouted to his father, who tried to look at next hospital's number on his iPhone. Johnny didn't noticed what was happening, and proceeded to his task.
"F*******!", was the first thing Ethan said. His entire mind was previously scrambled by the hit; the first thing he did was to put the shoes he always left at the door when returning from school and left home. That scene was so quick that none was able to react properly to it, and when his mom was able to grasp the situation, it was already late: Ethan was running away faster, not listening to his mom's shouts, and tears rolling from his eyes.
Not just because of the pain in the head.
But because he couldn't grasp how wonderful his life was, living in a safe place, with a mom and a dad taking care of him... but sadly he never learned how life can throw you at the floor and hit you, like how some kids were doing that to him. Not every kid trust his parents to tell 'em the truth; maybe because of the fear of getting repressed, or because they're told to always seek perfection, "never take no as answer", compete to win only, "I only accept A+ in math!", but there's no love when someone takes a "D". Everybody is special, so we deserve the best, and when we face reality, we sadly discover that life isn't fun and party, and that the only ones that can protect us (our fathers, our relatives) are still struggling themselves.
Because we are humans. We aren't loyal to each other... like dogs do.
"Hey Ethan", the vet come along the dog, now with a band on his tail, which wags like crazy. "your dog has no fractures, it's just a little sore". Once the dog is put on the floor, he runs to Ethan and licks him constantly.
"Thanks for saving my life", the dog could say.
"Thanks for saving mine", Ethan could reply, but not before a sweet, but relieved, voice echoed on the air, claiming his name.
"Oh thank God you're okay", said his mom, crying like a baby. "Thanks, Edna for calling us! Thank you! Are you okay? How's your head?"
"Son!!", his father comes in with Johnny on his arms, and gives both a hug. "I'm so sorry to talk like that to you! Please forgive me, forgive me..."
"No, dad. Forgive me", his hug seemed to embrace everyone who was present on this day. He also cries like a baby. "I promise I'll always trust in you, always! I'm so sorry, so.... ", he sobs without finishing his sentence.
"Excuse me", Edna asks. "What's your dog's name?"
"Dog?", the father replies. "We don't have a dog."
"Now we do", Ethan replies, which makes Johnny smile from ear to ear.
I hope you all like it. And forgive my english errors.