Chap. 25

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"I do not condone this," I repeated, casting a look at Emily.

"I cannot wait for this," she said, flashing me a smile.

We were all seated around Parker's room as he finished hooking up my mom's old camera to his TV, ready to play some of the old tapes.

"Which tape should I play first?" Parker asked, looking over at me.

"Just play the one that's already in there," Emily suggested.

"No," I declined.

Parker looked over at me again.

I wasn't ready to see the last thing my mom had ever filmed. To know that she'd expect to wake up and film the next event on tape again, only to never get the chance to.

I wasn't emotionally ready for that.

"Let's do me," Parker suggested.

"Okay!" Emily shouted from across the room, where she was pulling the popcorn out of the microwave.

"No innuendos while I'm here," Emmett declined, glaring in Emily's direction.

Parker chuckled, flashing Emmett a smile. "The tape labeled Parker? Let's play it."

I sat in the bean bag chair, McKenna next to me in the bean bag chair we'd borrowed from one of Parker's frat brothers.

Parker had to rewind all the way back to the beginning of the tape.

"Why didn't your mom ever buy a new camera?" McKenna asked me. "One that didn't require tapes?"

I tried to think of a way to word my mom's thought process into something that made sense.

"Because she wanted all of our lives documented in a single place," I explained, after a few moments of silence. "She wanted us to be able to go back and pick up these tapes and watch ourselves grow up. And when she started that process, digital cameras weren't available. And she didn't want to switch halfway through."

"Let's enjoy the life of Parker Adams," Parker stated, before pressing play and joining Emily on the couch.

"Is it recording?" my mom's voice asked.

Her voice felt like a ton of bricks hitting me in the chest, and I felt my breath catch in my throat.

"Every clip starts off like that," I heard Parker inform Emily.

And it really does.

"She owned that camera for 18 years and still never figured out how to work it," I said to McKenna, with a slight laugh.

"I think so," my dad's voice confirmed.

But the screen was still black.

"It doesn't look right," my mom's voice stated.

"Wait," my dad's voice said.

And then there were some flashing bright lights, and the camera began to focus.

"The lens cap was on," my dad's voice said.

And then we were in a hospital, my mom sitting in a bed, holding a baby.

And since this was Parker's tape, I could pretty much guess that was Parker.

"Say hi to the camera," mom cooed to Parker.

"The very expensive camera," dad added.

"We'll get our money's worth," mom promised. "I'm going to document every moment of your life Parker Joseph Adams."

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