To the Moon and Back

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic
A story about ghostly intervention and the never ending love of a child.

Submitted: August 18, 2017

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Submitted: August 18, 2017

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“Hey, how ya doing tonight? No, no, no. Don’t sit up. You’re fine, really. No, I’m not here to see my mom. I work here. What do I do? Well, ya might call me the Caretaker, I guess. No. I don’t do the mopping, the vacuuming or any of that stuff. What then? Well, I take care of things. I feed the dust bunnies and water the cobs. I also collect the wayward sock and store the lost hangers. I dim a light here and there and sometimes, just sometimes, I sit beside a bed and tell an odd story or two if only to ease a troubled mind. And it just so happens that I have a such a story tonight. Would you like to hear it? Yeah? You don’t mind me pulling the chair a little closer to the bed, do ya? I wouldn’t want to wake the others. Great. Okay then…

 

The late summer sun-baked parking lot of the Greenhaven memory care facility seemed to stretch out in front of her like a weird Dali painting. She couldn’t get to her car fast enough. Leaving her father in a place like this was bad enough, she thought, but when she tried to say goodbye he just cried and begged her not to leave him. And then he called her “Mommy”.

 

“Please mommy, I’ll be good this time, I promise!” he screamed as she walk away quickly, her tears coming all at once.

 

She cried over her hot steering wheel for twenty minutes. Her blond hair was sweat matted to her forehead and her mascara was ruined. She pulled herself together after a while but couldn’t make herself look at the building again as she pulled away in her car. She was too afraid to see he might be watching her leave.

 

They had to keep the old man sedated for a few days. He was quite a handful for the staff, but as the days and then weeks went by he settled in just fine. Like everyone else in these kind of places the old man had his good days and his bad days but his nights seemed to get worse over the course of a year. Those nights he would cry quietly to himself and mumble incoherent sentences. That’s when she came back.

 

She always seemed to know when he was gonna have another bad night. While making my rounds, sometimes in the middle of the night, I’d see her sitting beside him in the chair with one hand soothing his brow and the other resting on his stomach or holding his hand. The candle shaped night light on the wall behind her cast a glow through her blond hair and softening her young face. Often times she would sing for him real low. His favorites, I guess. One time she may be singing the lyrics to “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” the next “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree”. She would only do this on his worst nights though, and every night before she would leave she would bend down close to his ear and whisper something to him. His response to this every time was a broad grin and “To the mooon and baaaack, Doll Face”. The next day his mind would be just a little bit sharper. Saying good morning to the staff as they walk by his door or through his room. This went on for another year.

 

Then one night something really special happened. I remember that exact night, it was sometime in the Fall, I think. I was just finishing up in a closet when I heard the blonde's pretty voice. I peaked out so as not to disturb her and listened as she sang “That Silver Haired Daddy of Mine” softly to the old man. He had such a pleasant smile on his face, which was in stark contrast to his cursing and crying earlier in the day. When she had finished the song he was at peace again. She bent close to his ear and this time I was able to hear her gentle words. She said

“How much do you love mommy?”

“To the mooon and….baaack…” was all he could get out before he closed his eyes for the last time and passed away. Then, with a gossamer like hand, she caressed his bald and liver spotted head with the loving touch of a mother and spoke for the last time.

“My little boy, go and play with the angels tonight. Mommy will see you soon.”

With that, the blond ghost stood and looked over the bed and right at me. I have to admit, I was a bit unnerved. Ya see, ghosts don’t always see one another and when they do they rarely acknowledge it. But she nodded her head to me and politely smiled. I nodded back and then watched as she faded away.

 

So, what did ya think of my story? Oh, I see you’re at peace now. Well, that was the purpose for my story, I suppose. Godspeed then, and goodbye sweet lady. I hope you’re playing with the angels tonight.

 


© Copyright 2017 R.Guy Barringer. All rights reserved.

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