HAWS was dead. I lay in bed, staring at the ceiling; quite honestly, the warmth cocooning me may just have been only good thing I had going for me today. He'd died.
It's not like we hadn't seen it coming, he was old after all. Every morning spent slipping into his room hoping today wasn't the day. Listening to him huff and wheeze tiredly as you tried to wake him up. It never worked fully, I got a lukewarm response from him on his good days; and at his age he didn't have many of them. The morning I'd pleaded with him to wake up for just a few minutes, just a few minutes and he could slip back into his sleep.
Ironically, he hadn't died in the morning. Following the life philosophy he'd held for a few years now, he'd gone out making as much noise as possible. If you were going to make him do something, he maintained the right to do it as noisily as he was physically able to. He'd died with a startling bang as I watched TV in the other room. I'd came in to find him almost slumped in his spot, his glass shattered across the floor. He was gone, and it had turned out, for that night at least, nobody in the world cared except me.
How on earth was I supposed to get out of bed? Knowing he wouldn't be awake to groan while I got ready. To whine at the time I took in the shower. To bang and clatter around in the other room in an attempt (generally successful) to convince me to hurry up in there. Most mornings I'd have willingly strangled him, but the house was strangely quiet now.
How could I possibly get up and face the day. How could I look anyone in my lectures in the eye knowing he hadn't been there for me this morning? How could I be brave enough to face my friends, knowing that at home, his body still lay where he'd passed on? I couldn't bear to see their smiles without his support, without him I was worse than a leper. I'd be nothing more than a pathetic mess, hiding self-consciously at the back of the university rooms. Wishing desperately I could be anywhere else. What was the point of even getting out of bed? I couldn't go a day without him.
He'd been old yes; he wasn't as sleek as he would have been in his day. He certainly had lost a lot of his 'oomph' by the time I met him. But it really had seemed like he'd live forever. He'd made it this long after all…
No I had to face it, he was really gone, and no amount of wishing, praying, begging, bargaining or demanding was going to bring my Hot Automatic Water System back.