Heaven must be nice this time of year

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic

This young family struggles with real life emotional cruelty.

“Heaven must be nice this time of year.” he thought as he leaned forward. Maybe he was right. Imagining things couldn’t get much worse.  All those moments rushing through his mind like a rocky horror picture show that he could not outrun. In this moment his memories fluttered all at once and seemingly took a lifetime and he began to believe he was blessed with prescience. If so, what could such a gift bring to him anyway?


He can still remember the scent of her perfume as he walked out. She looks so beautiful when she’s angry. Can’t remember the last time she had a bad looking day. She was always well spoken, well put together but with no effort at all. Her cooking was to die for and all who were friends and family came over often to share meals with us. There seemed to be a special occasion every week, multiple times a week & any excuse to be around those two.


Carl and Sunny were both from the same beautiful tropical island, Puerto Rico, and shared the same family values. They both needed to escape their families. Each with very good reason, were drawn to each other and others to them. They left their beloved island and moved to the city of New Jersey for dreams of a better future. Neither of them could imagine what the future held, as few of us do, but as quickly as magnets swiftly come together they were thrown into opposite ends of eternity.


“Please Carl, think of the girls!” she exclaimed as he thrust away from her.

“You think I’m some kind of moron? Hugh? Is that what you think? You think I wouldn’t find out!” He shouted.

He reached over and grabbed Samantha by her arm like a doll and tossed her on his hip.


Samantha was hiding behind her mother the entire time and Carl didn’t notice. Samantha looked up at her father and didn’t recognize the man staring back at her. She’s only four years old but knows that this situation is all wrong. She made sure that her 2 year old sister, Melanie, was safe in the room they shared. Samantha herself was frozen still at the sight of her father transforming into this unrecognizable monster. She knew she loved him. She knew she loved her mother the same but she could also see that her mother seemed to be in trouble and her father seemed desperate.


“Let her go Carl.” Sunny said softly.

“She is my daughter too Sunny!” he yelled back “and she’s coming with me”


As he turned with Samantha in tow Sunny knew there wasn’t much she could do. She didn’t want to make things worse. Melanie was in the other room and she wanted to keep it that way. Sunny couldn’t remember when she has ever seen Carl this way.



For as long as she can remember he has always been soft-spoken, quite, loveable, private, hardworking family man. She could always depend on him to take care of business. Sure there were times when she had to be the hustler that he couldn’t be but she was doing what she knew to do to make sure they didn’t end up homeless or hungry. He held a job at the local factory and never faltered but that didn’t maintain the comfortable lifestyle they had become accustomed to with entertaining their friends and family regularly. Now with two daughters she could not see herself going back to the life she left behind. 


“My family was right about you. You’re a whore. You don’t love me. You don’t care about this family. You’re a dirty piece of shit. You can keep your friends. I’m leaving.” He continued across the corridor of the hallway of their 2nd floor walk-up. “I hope you find what you’re looking for. You will be haunted for the rest of your life for what you have done to me you piece of garbage. I hate you, I hate you like I’ve never hated anyone in my life. I wish I never stayed with you. I wish I never knew you” Now at the bottom of the stairway he never looked back but Samantha let her clench on her father loose and he returned the gesture.


She ran up the landing and barley touched a step as she reached for her mother and held tight.

“I’m sorry Mommy.” She proclaimed as she stroked her mother’s beautiful long dark hair.

“No, Samantha don’t apologize mamita.” As she cried, trembling with every word. “It’s gonna be okay. Daddy just needs some time alone. He’ll be back soon.” She said without hesitation.

“Why?” asked Samantha

"I don’t know.” She state as she tucked her into bed.

They both found Melanie as they left her in her room on her bed peaceful and unaware of what had just occurred.

“Come on girls, it’s time for bed”

“Where’s Daddy?” Melanie stated with pure joy and excitement.

Samantha began to cry immediately at her sister’s call for Dad. It reminded her that things were not as they should be. No sooner Melanie also began to sob and Sunny joined in the choir of tears with her daughters. The pain of their tears combed through the reality of the situation. It was as if she came upon an exposed artery and would soon bleed to death. The fear was all consuming and nothing short of a miracle could ease this pain.


“Lenny!”  Yelled Carl, door slams behind him and the walls tremble with his wrath.

“What?” she yelled back nervously. She knew the voice belonged to her brother Carl & not many people can get away with calling her Lenny as she prefers her given name, Leonor.

“I left her.” He exclaimed as he fell to his knees.


Leonor stood stoically.


“What do you have to say now?” he cried, on his and knees. Seeking her guidance as he always did.

“What do you want me to say Carl Boy?” in that stern, cold manner that sent chills down ones spine. “It was bound to happen. I told you she was garbage of the wor…”

“NO!” he cried, “You stop it. You stop badmouthing her. She is the mother of my children. You have respect.” He began to cough as if nauseated.

“Are you okay?” asked Leonor.

Carl continued to cough and grasp for air. Leonor walked toward him and helped him up. “You need water.” She said, “want water?” she then asked.

“No.” Carl barely got out “Air” he breathed out as if his last breathe.

He began to drag himself towards her window while she went to get him some water.


He can distinctly remember when he first laid eyes on Sunny as if it where happening at this moment. At this moment in time he was overcome with peace. With this overwhelming peace came memories his most guarded thoughts and highly precious memories.


“Goodnight my angels.” Sunny whispered to her girls as she laid kisses on their faces.

“I love you and Daddy loves you very much. He loves you more than anything” as she peppered them with more kisses.

“Goodnight Mommy” squeaked Melanie with giggles, “Goodnight Mom, love you, goodnight” Samantha rushed; she wanted Mom to know she was really loved.


As Sunny started to move from her girls’ bed and towards their room light she noticed a medicine bottle on the floor of their bedroom. She immediately knew that no medicine bottles belonged in their room and as she reached for it came to realize it was medication prescribed to her.

As she became more and more frantic by the second, she simultaneously became overwhelmed with the feeling of being struck by a comet directly in her soul.

The events of that day became devastatingly clear as she drops to the floor.


Imagining things couldn’t get much worse, Carl opens the window for air to breathe. He is feeling nauseated and peaceful at the same time. As he leans forward and takes each breathe he remembers loving her so. He recalls never doubting his love was real and knowing there wasn’t very much he would not do for Sunny.

He also knows that there is absolutely no way he can live with the knowledge that his woman is the whore his sister says she is. He trusts his sister with conviction. How could she be with any other man? Sure she argued that those men and woman were coming in and out all day because she was hustling drugs to make ends meet, but these men lusted after her and she did not set boundaries. As much as he could not be the man he knew she deserved, he was being the best man he knew to be. She should understand that. Love should’ve been enough. She was enough for me, he thought, I love my daughters but they’re better off without me, he thought as the cold dry pavement lay beneath his warm cheek, and heaven must be nice this time of year.

Submitted: December 14, 2014

© Copyright 2021 Luna C. All rights reserved.

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