A good chunk of my college savings is gone. It turns out funerals aren't cheap, regardless of how many people show . My mom, Marylinn Bellherst, as kind and dedicated as she was didn't have too many friends. She was too busy working to give me all that she possibly could. Most of the people in attendance were mom's work colleagues. Asides from the colleagues there's an older grieving couple I'm guessing , their my Grandparents. I've never met up until this moment. The sobbing women rushes over to embrace me. I try not to cringe but can't manage not to scowl. She has the same auburn hair as my mother, though her's is streaked with gray. The old man is rubbing her back for reassurance. He has a coon gray mullet and matching handle bar mustache. I back my way out of the woman’s embrace. It's suddenly all too much to bare. These are the people who after all disowned my mother on account of my existence. I have two words for them and neither of them are very reassuring. Their still sobbing as I turn away. I turn right into another unwelcome presence. Maxwell Roosevelt.
He's dressed in a black tailored suit that probably costs more than our monthly rent. I stare at him for a moment. At this moment I'm too numb to decipher my feelings. Max looks at me with a pained expression. I stare at him, or maybe through him.After a moment he clears his throat brining me out of my trance. “I'm sorry .” He whispers.
Our eyes meet for the first time I see something in him that I've never seen before. Guilt. I thrive off of his guilt, I use it to make me feel something, alive even. A few yards behind him are his parents. His father is an older version of him, and his mother is obviously a trophy wife. No doubt she shoots up with botox every month. She has long silky brown hair and looks like a supermodel, nothing maternal about her. No laugh lines or wrinkles to say she has had any real life experience. Where was she while my mother was protecting her son? Their all wearing sympathetic looks. Every last one of them, and of course, why shouldn't they be? If mom were here she'd tell me to smile and be polite, It's something I can't do. I'm not sure I can even emote at this point. The priests words go right through me. Mom is lowered into the ground. I throw roses on her casket, and whatever happens after that is a blur until one of my mom's ex co-workers drops me back off at home.
I'm aware that our apartment is full of flowers, cards and casserole dishes. I neglect them and go right into mom's room. I curl up in her bed taking in her scent still on the bedding. Somehow it reassures me into a deep dreamless sleep.
I wake up alone. I peer at mom's alarm clock it's 7:32, still light out. I suddenly wished I was more social had more than just a casual acquaintance. I didn't talk to anyone too much at the public school I used to go to, and having only been at Monroe academy for a month all I had at this stage were acquaintances. None of them showed. I close my eyes and wish I had someone to just be there, even if it's just to take up space. A knock on the door breaks me away from my thoughts. I open the door to find Maxwell Roosevelt standing there. He's changed out of his funeral attire. “Sorry I'm not up for company.” I lie.
He slips his foot in between the door and it's frame just as I'm closing it. “I don't think you should be alone right now.” He says and at first I think it's some sort of line. But I examine his face. He's dead serious, no intended pun.