Chapter Forty-Six

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Blue

By the time we reach the Yankee stadium, a large crowd surrounds the building, all dressed from head to toe in Yankee merchandise, from T-shirts to foam fingers. A group of jackasses even went as far as painting their faces blue and white with the team's logo on their cheeks. They cheer and boast about their favorite team, teasing one of their friends dressed in the opposing team's jersey. Already I can tell they're the kind of assholes who will get drunk and ruin an inspecting kid's memory of his first ball game with their crude and obnoxious behavior.

I was never into baseball or any other kind of sport when I was younger. I couldn't get into following a set of rules and doing the same thing over and over, relying on fate for the result to be different. I associated players of teams as sociopaths. Who wants to run around a court bouncing a ball or tackling guys onto the floor over an oval-shaped ball? The only time I played anything other than a guitar was football during Thanksgiving before my mom died. I wouldn't know what I was doing, but I still tried. My brother and I would make fake strategies than never made sense and try to tackle my dad, who'd let us with a warm smile and wide arms. Back then I was oblivious to how shitty and evil my dad was. I had no idea he was cheating on my mom. Had no idea he'd be one of the reasons she left me.

Sometimes I wish it was him who'd die instead of her. I know I sound wicked, but I honestly couldn't care. He drove my mom to kill herself, meanwhile he was screwing a girl that was barely legal. He was married to my mother for fifteen years; surely, he knew her more than anyone else. He knew her favorite meal; he knew she loved to gossip; he knew she hated roses because they were the most common of flowers; He knew the important things about her, he knew the dark, so he had to have known she was struggling with something. That thing convinced her to take her own life without leaving so much as a note. Somewhere between sleeping with a twenty-year-old and going out with friends late at night before coming home, he had to have noticed the difference in her.

I was too young to pay attention to anything other than building Lego castles and learning to play the guitar for my mother, but if I could go back in time, I'd shove the block sculpture to the side, put down the too-big guitar and gave her all of my attention. I would creep into her bedroom where'd she lay in bed all day and get in bed with her and assure her I was by her side. I would help clean the house, especially when I'd find her hunched over the sink in tears. I would compliment her simple cooking of macaroni and cheese for dinner when dad made a playful snide comment.

"Whatever happened to steak and mashed potatoes? Are all the potatoes hiding underground?" he'd joke, and Elliot would chuckle, mom never saying a word. He'd turn to me with a stupid smile and ask, "Will you help me find them for mommy, Blue?" I'd mutter a 'sure' but look at mom as I said it. Let her know I'm only entertaining him but appreciated her getting out of bed long enough to cook us all something to eat. She'd return my grateful smile and hold my hand, whispering a soft 'thank you.'

Perhaps it wouldn't have been enough to keep her from getting up early in the morning the next day and driving to the beach, but perhaps it would have been just enough.

I'm snapped out of my thoughts when my dad turns to me with that foolish smile of his and asks, "Do you want to grab anything to eat before we go to our seats?"

Enraged by my whirling thoughts and memories, I want to grab him by his washed-out Yankees T-shirt and slam his face into the stone wall of the stadium, but there are way too many witnesses—I mean people... nah, I meant witnesses.

"I'm good," I tell him, shoving my hands in my pockets. How long will this game last?

"Are you sure? I've had a hot dog from the vendor behind us, they're super good," he assures me.

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