He Ran

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Literary Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
Returning home for the holidays isn't always easy, and Danny finds a way to escape the changes.
This is for Juan, since he wanted me to write about him. I couldn't really do that, but this for him based on a song he really likes: He Ran by Trebuchet. Hope everybody enjoys,and I apologize for the erroneous content you may find. :)

Submitted: December 24, 2013

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Submitted: December 24, 2013

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Danny looked out the window as the taxi arrived in his home town. The sidewalks were paved with snow as a young couple walked in silence- their scarves almost completely covered their faces. Other than that, not many other people were out and about; no carolers paraded the street like when Danny was little, not even the infamous Crazy Craig was seen, as he often was with a brown paper bag containing a very suspicious smelling beverage which he always claimed to be “Holy Water.” Danny let out a sigh, and began to fidget in his seat at the sight of the near- empty streets. The holiday season seemed to grow more and more melancholy as each year passed; with a higher demand for rum laced eggnog and a lower priority given to the gingerbread house kits that families would tediously put together while humming Christmas melodies. The annual lighting of the Christmas tree seemed less exciting than it used to be for Danny as well as the rest of the town. The apathy appeared earlier and earlier each year, as the citizens watched with dull eyes, their mouths fixed in a straight line as the tree came to life with blinking lights and sparkling ornaments which mesmerized them only years before. Regardless of this desponding phenomena, Danny was still glad to be coming home. Maybe then Christmas would feel normal again.

The taxi arrived in front of his parents’ house, which was sufficiently decorated with Christmas lights and festive reindeer lawn ornaments which moved in a subtle mechanical matter on the roof. Through the window you could see the tree, decorated with garland and various ornaments that Danny had made as a child, along with the small pinecone star at the top, a family tradition started when Tsu-Tsu, the family cat had ripped the traditional star they had so they collected small pinecones from the yard and glued them together to make a star. On Christmas Day they would always throw the pinecone star into the fireplace and watch it crackle as they all sat with their new gifts. Danny smiled, and paid the driver for the ride as he opened the cab door. The cold breeze blasted him in the face as he got out, and he turned back to the cab driver. “Happy Holidays.” He said. The driver said nothing and drove away. The Christmas Spirit must be strong in that one, Danny thought to himself and chuckled. He walked up the driveway, making his way to the front door. A festive wreath was hung on the door, an authentic one at that. How nice.

Danny quietly rapped on the door; quickly a little girl around the age of fifteen opened it. “Danny!” She screamed and hugged him tightly. This caused the rest of the people in the living room to turn their eyes towards all of the commotion. “Welcome home, Danny.” He heard his father say. Danny walked into the house and looked around. Everything looked just as it did every Christmas; everybody was in the living room chatting with one another and Mom was in the kitchen making god knows what. Tsu-Tsu was sleeping on the back of an empty recliner, and Danny proceeded to take a seat there. “How’s school, son?” He heard his Dad ask beside him.

“Fine.” He responded.

“Are you passing everything? Joined any fraternities or sports yet?”

“Yes, and no I haven’t.”

“Of course he hasn’t, Dad.” Said the girl who answered the door. Danny blinked in disbelief. Dad? Was that little girl his sister Hazel? He couldn’t even recognize her, she changed so much since he last saw her. Her once mouse-brown hair was now dyed black and shaved on one side, and her eyebrow was pierced along with her nose. She looked at him and smiled. “Danny doesn’t need to join anything, he’s gonna be a famous artist like VanGogh!”

“Heh, well I guess so. He already has those huge holes in his ears, soon they are just not gonna be there!” Dad chuckled slightly but seemed disappointed. Moments later Danny’s mom came in and welcomed her son. “What are you making, Ma?” Danny asked.

“Oh, this year I thought that I would try to make something different, so I made some masala!”

“Oh… nice.”

Dinner went by fast, since nobody really talked. Everyone just spooned the meal into their mouths and muttered something about how good/ bad it was. By the time everyone finished it was already dark outside, and Danny resolved to make his way to his old room to lay down for a while. A few hours past and Danny sat up and sighed. He checked his phone for the time, it was midnight; Christmas morning. Moonlight brightly beamed in through Danny’s window. So many things had changed in such a short time. The town, Hazel… probably so many other things too. It was really too much for Danny to take in. Suddenly, he got up and exited his room. He passed his parents’ bedroom and held his ear to the door: snoring. They were asleep. He did the same to Hazel’s door: silence. The coast was clear. Danny opened the front door and closed it quietly, escaping into the night.

Danny didn’t know where he was running to, or what he was going to do when he got to wherever that was, but it didn’t matter. The wet grass under his feet shivered, as the rhythmic force of his step quickened. All of the past blocks seemed to blur into one as Danny raced through the sleeping city. The only thing he could hear was the sound of his own footsteps passing through the town, his town. Soon enough he lost count of how many streets he had passed, or how many turns he had made. He slowed his pace to a jog and looked around him. The streets seemed to go on deep into the horizon; it was like everything ahead of where Danny was distended. A chill passed through Danny’s body, and then it came to him. Everything was exactly where it was supposed to be, including him. These changes, although unnerving, were meant to happen.

Danny stopped and marveled his surroundings. The city’s Christmas tree wasn’t too far ahead, and it looked so beautiful. Those lights that mesmerized Danny as a kid were once more doing so, and joy pervaded itself through Danny as he caught his breath. Sweat from his brow slowly dribbled into his eye and stung, but Danny ignored it. In that moment, everything was infinite and no matter what changes lay ahead, the world never seemed brighter than it did right now.


© Copyright 2018 EllieWinters. All rights reserved.

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