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All Stories Must Finish

By @RAVENCLAWQUEEN

There are no chapters this is just a short story

I forced my sickening suitcase on the uneven floor of the airport. Occasional bumps caused the decaying wheels of the suitcase to struggle. It would make a rather repulsive squeak every once and a while or the handle would jiggle oddly so that the suitcase would slowly tip over. I had to constantly pick it up or the wheels might turn the wrong way causing the whole suitcase to give way and dump all of the contents on the floor, like if a toddler has a temper tantrum next to a bin of legos. 

The suitcase was horrible and made me look poor, I wanted to look less poor, that right now wasn’t an option.

This suitcase had to be ancient. This thing that was supposed to pass a suitcase wasn’t as bad as my name, which had to have been used 10 times in the past 3 generations. I hated my name anyway. This whole trip sucked so far. I was even given a ****** airplane ticket on the absolute worst airline. 

The airplane was barely an airplane anyway. Moth-eaten seats with holes in the attired fabric that looked like they were from an eBay scammer. No snacks or help was given. One of my friends in Kindergarten (Whos no longer my friends, mainly because she’s poor) used to talk of an airline she has been on that was “Super Cool”. Snacks and drinks, blankets, even a TV. I wished I had something like that on this airplane. Something like normal rich people would have. So I could look like one instead of looking like, well broke. 

Anyway, the plane didn’t have a fire escape or oxygen masks. So basically if the plane were to crash the newspaper article for the week may look something like this.

“Plane Crashes in Nevada. No Survivors”

Anyway, the plane didn’t crash. I didn’t need to use the barf bag, which to my horror was already full.

I didn’t need to go to the bathroom that as far as I knew didn’t exist. If it did I would assume that it would be between the last seat and the wall and would be a used porta potty from a workplace used by a bunch of 100-year-old men. Most likely never cleaned out. 

I honestly didn’t have it as bad as I could have. I wish I could say the same as the person sitting next to me. The person sitting next to me barfed a few times (which made me want to throw up myself), and when the plane finally touched the ground again, their baggage fell on their head. Mine was so dainty and light that it could rest on my lap.

I tried to forget about the horrible ride and focused on what was ahead of me; the only reason I came on this trip. I was here to see my aunt. My aunt is a great person, her house is okay looking. Honestly, I wouldn’t care if I had to throw up in the used barf bag. Or if a hundred pieces of baggage fell on my head. I wouldn’t care. I wanted to see my aunt.

I stepped away from the baggage claim and tried to be seen as least as possible with my horrible suitcase. I began skimming the area for my Aunt. 

I stepped outside, the cold air hitting my face harder than a playground ball to the face. I quickly pulled up my hood, the cold air nipping at my nose and my eyes watering so badly I had to blink the tears out of my eyes.

I began looking for my Aunt, hoping that she was out here somewhere near, as I didn’t want to walk halfway down the sidewalk full of people searching for someone who was inside. 

I began skimming the area out here and my eyes focused on a man trying to walk across the street. He looked a good 120 years old and seemed to be struggling to drag his suitcase, which looked hundreds of times worse than mine. I scoffed at how pathetic he looked and went closer to mock him but someone grabbed my shoulder before I got the chance. My instincts were to slap the person, but I realized it was my uncle before doing so. 

“Hello?” I said looking behind him for my aunt. My heart sank and began jumping to conclusions as I didn’t see my aunt anywhere.

“Umm, where’s aunt Jess?” I asked again.

“Well, aren’t you gonna give your uncle a big old hug?” He said with his arms open expecting a hug.

I gave him a forceful hug and quickly pulled out, the smell of moldy bacon filled my nose and suddenly the smell of the gasoline in the surrounding air didn’t smell so bad. I then asked again more seriously this time.

“Where is aunt Jess?”

“She’s home, she felt kinda crumby and I told her to stay just in case she might get more sick.” He said while ushering me to the trunk of his car. I tried to stay as far away from him as possible.

I put my dingy suitcase into the dust-caked trunk, which smelled of pine trees and cat litter. I scoffed at how disgusting his car was, the seats were no better than the ones on the airplane, and there was no freshener at all.

“Where’s the umm I dunno, air freshener or you know Febreez,” I said my nose scrunched up.

“Well we’re on a tight budget right now sweetheart, I know you understand.”

I guess he got that from my suitcase. What he didn’t understand was that we were rich, and after my mom bought a new tesla we had to buy a suitcase from a dirty thrift store full of poor people. It was horrid. My friend (the one that is no longer my friend) had a minivan that was pre-used. I went into it one time to go to a sleepover and just stopped being friends with her because of how horrible the condition her car was in. I mean how can you be friends with someone whose car smelled of throwup and an old fireplace. The plane I was forced to go on (well I agreed to go on because I thought it was VIP) was like VIP compared to that car.

Anyway, we began driving and my uncle would not stop talking. Eventually, I tuned him out with my AirPods that he didn’t know I was listening to. I had snuck them on the trip and connected them to his iPad that had been laying on the floor of the vehicle. There was no passcode required.

He found out I was listening to music when he asked a question that I didn’t respond to. I guess he gave up trying to talk after that.

After we got out of the car we stopped in front of a cabin, one in horror movies, the ones that people get murdered in.

“Surprise!” My uncle said standing in front of the derelict and rickety shack.

“What?” I said arms crossed staring at the horrid makeshift of a getaway cabin.

“We’re glamping!” My uncle said as if it would come true.

“Where’s your house?”

“About 1 hour from here.” He said still happy somehow.

“Yeah, are we gonna go?” I was still disgusted at how little effort my uncle put into this vacation.

“Here come inside it gets better.” He said, pulling my dingy suitcase out of the trunk. Now it not only looked unacceptable but also like it was buried underground for 100 years.

At this point, I regret the trip. No one told me I was going to be stuck in a cabin for a week with my uncle, who was a living caveman.

I walked into the house that smelled better than I expected. They clearly put Frebreez in here.

“Aunt Jess!” I called out.

“She’s not here.” My uncle called out whilst dragging in my suitcase.

“What!?!?” I shouted.

“She comes Thursday because she has work stuff.” He announced like it was a good thing.

Now, this was even worse. I would be stuck in a cabin for the next week with my uncle. Only 3 of these days would I be with my aunt.

He brought me inside the cabin. I was expecting it to be a 5-star glamping cabin, as he had said. But I wasn’t too surprised when I saw the inside.

The cabin was all wood and the entrance was a hallway. You could see back into the end of the cabin, with one table and lamp to light up the entire hallway.

“This is your room!” He said pointing at a door that looked like it had been forged out of wood taken from a sunken ship.

“Go and take a look!” He exclaimed, ushering me towards the door.

I stepped inside to find the worst possible room that I could have gotten. There was a single twin bed with camo covers and only 4 pillows that were caked with dust. The floor was wood and there wasn’t even a walk-in closet, no carpet, no windows. Just a dusty old wooden jail with a bed and nightstand. There wasn’t even a TV.

“What even is this?” I said in a snotty voice.

“Well, your parents said that you were getting a bit grumpy after being all cooped up in the mansion so I thought you would want to take a break to go glamping.” He started almost as a joke to me.

“No, no, no NO. Did you think this flimsy piece of wood will even make makeshift glamping? I can’t believe you brought me on this trip.”

“Well, your parents said you were becoming snotty from all the rich kid stuff. I am here to fix that!”

“SNOTTY, SNOTTY YOU SAY. WHAT IN THE WORLD IS WRONG WITH YOU, YOU’RE THE ONE THAT SMELLS OF MOLDY BACON AND CAN’T EVEN AFFORD A SUITABLE GLAMPING CABIN!” I shouted then slammed my door to the dusty box room. 

“Young lady calm down, you know what, stay in that room until dinner. You are being very ungrateful.”

I heard his footsteps and he marched away from the door and walked into another room.

I sighed and laid on the bed that felt like a rock. I lifted the covers and saw that the mattress was completely sprung.

I can’t believe him. I thought What am I supposed to do?’

The next 2 days were okayish. My phone had been deprived of me before the trip and I spent most of the day sitting doing nothing. I stared at the window looking for birds. 

I had snuck out of my room to check around the cabin and found a full library. I picked one of the books which was called “To Kill a Mockingbird.” It sounded dumb, but my dad always talked of it. I hadn’t read a book in about 2 years, other than schoolwork. I opened the first page and immediately got hooked in. 3 hours later and the book was back on the shelf and I was searching for another. 

I found a bird-watching one and saw like 10 various species of birds. 

I didn’t speak to my uncle for the entire 2 days except for one time when I was going back to the library to get another book.

“Hey.”

“Hey.”

“Whatcha doin?”

“Getting another book.”

“Okay.”

We didn’t even speak at dinner. It was complete silence.

I stared out the window looking for a female Cardinal. A sound coming from the woods made the birds that I was currently trying to find in the book fly away.

“Hey!” I said to no one in particular.

A car pulled into the driveway of the cabin, I couldn’t make out who was in the driver’s seat.

Someone stepped out, their body slim, but stomach plump. They struggled to get out. It was my aunt 

I rushed to the door and quickly opened it. My uncle was at the door behind me before I even knew.

“Hey, button!” She said very tiredly

“Hey!” I said giving her a long hug, unlike the one to my uncle.

“What…What happened?” I asked my eyes on her stomach.

“Yeah about that, meet me in the kitchen.”

I hadn’t been in the kitchen yet. Only the dining room. The kitchen was rather nice with marble finished counters and oak cabinets in odd shapes. My aunt sat down at the bar and I did as well along with my uncle. 

“Do you want to tell her Frank?” She asked her head tilting a bit and her hands resting on her stomach.

“You can dear.”

“Okay.”

She looked at me making eye contact and then began announcing her great news.

“We’re pregnant! The due dates 4 weeks from today….so I thought you might want to be here before we have him…..errr…it”

“It’s a boy!” I said, excitement rushing over my body.

“Ummm.” Uncle Frank said looking at Aunt Jess.

“We were planning not to tell anyone but can you keep a secret button?” She always called me button. I liked it.

“Yes!” I said.

“What have you been doing this entire time?” She asked my Uncle.

“Well, I was signing the papers.”

“The papers for what?” I asked trying to sound curious.

“Well….” She eyed uncle frank and spoke again.

“I and your uncle are moving into this cabin, you are staying in what, after we glam it up a bit, will be the baby’s room.” She sounded so excited, “here I don’t think you got the proper tour.”

She stood up groaned, clutched her stomach, and then stretched her arms so that her back cracked very loudly. 

She started walking out of the kitchen and then showed me to the hallway. She must have put up a picture as she walked in this morning as a beautiful forest scene picture hung above the nightstand with the lamp. She led me to the end of the hall and opened the first door on the left. The door opened to a room with a window completely on one side showing the beautiful forest and was full of beautiful flowers in vases on every hard surface. 3 other bedrooms like this were among the first 5 doors. She showed me the library which I had already been in. She showed me a sunroom. She showed me almost a hundred rooms, all different, all different colors, but all showing the forest, all showing the beautiful scene of the outside forest, except for what would be the baby’s room. 

After what seemed like hours I realized the worth of the cabin, the size, and humbleness that I had never seen before.

“You know Button, we always wanted a cabin in the woods, this was your uncle Frank’s surprise after being cooped up at that old rent house.

“Rent house? It was like a mansion or maybe it was because I was so little at that time.”

My Aunt laughed and got up.

“I’m gonna go take a nap, it was a long drive.”

I watched her go out of the room. I sat at the counter waiting for my uncle to say something. He never did. So decided to speak up.

“Hey,” I said.

“Hey,” he responded, not taking his eyes off of the stove in which a pot of water boiled.

“Sorry, about…. well…. earlier this week,” I said in the sorriest way I could, which wasn’t very good as I hadn’t apologized for a while.

He didn’t say anything.

I cleared my throat expecting an “It’s okay everyone has those moments” but instead his answer shocked me.

“When I was a kid….. I lived in an abusive household. My parents were multi-millionaires. A lot of people knew that and…… expected me to have designer clothes and as such. But instead, they kept the money for themselves. They gave me rags and dog food, striking me across the back when I asked for more food. One time on a “family vacation” they brought me to a beach. I was having such fun I lost track of where my parents were. When I realized they weren’t there I called for them and eventually found my way back to their car.” He stopped, sighed, and continued, “Their car was gone. They had left me. I sat there for a while crying. My hair getting to the texture of hay, and the sand sticking to my underwear, which was supposed to be a makeshift swim trunk. Then a woman came and changed my life. She helped me, called the police, and let me stay with her for a week. My parents were put in jail. They had returned 19 hours back to their house, leaving me there homeless. Later I was put in foster care. The lady took me in immediately. This lady had a few other foster children, one being your Uncle Mykel, and one being your dad. You’re dad’s old best friend is now your Aunt.” 

I stood with my mouth wide open. He hadn’t even taken his eyes off the pot. He just stood there looking at nothing in particular. Maybe the wall over the stove had an oddly shaped stain. Or maybe he was looking at the wall but not looking at the wall if you know what I mean. 

“Wow umm… I never knew you went through all of that.”

“Well, I’m glad I did because now you’ll have another cousin, in maybe a month or so.”

I walked out of the room, shocked, surprised, I couldn’t describe it in words.

I went to the library looking for a book, I saw my Aunt sleeping in a large antique chair next to a little nightstand and lamp that matched the one in the hallway when you first step in the house.

I quickly and quietly picked up a book and got out of the room. 

I never knew I had fallen asleep until I woke up with a book in hand. The light was still on. I quickly turned it off and then layed back down in bed before shooting straight up again. The thing that woke me up was sirens. 

I heard them coming from outside. It was very loud. I ran out of my room and to the outside. I watched my Aunt being placed in an ambulance and my Uncle quickly getting in his car. 

I rushed to his car, barefoot, in pajamas. My feet were wet. Why were my feet wet? I thought back to when I was rushing out of the house, the floor was wet. 

I hopped into the car. My Uncle didn’t ask any questions but pulled out of the driveway and rushed after the ambulance. 

“Ambulance can’t hold us all.” He almost shouted. He said this very quickly and kept his eyes on the road.

I was confused. What had happened. Why was my Aunt in an ambulance? 

“Your Aunt’s water broke, came out of the library screaming in pain. Called the ambulance, they came about 2 hours later. Thought about waking you up but thought that it was more important to comfort your aunt.” 

I was still confused. If my Aunt was going into labor wouldn’t I be awake, why did the hospital need to come.

“She had a seizure.” He said quickly just like he had said everything else. 

My eyes caught the clock, it was 2:30 am.

I don’t know how long the car ride was but it seemed fast. Everything went so fast. It seemed like a blur. 

The next second we were checking into the hospital and in a hallway. Well, my uncle was in the hospital room. I waited there in the hallway for 7 hours. I guess a nurse saw me waiting there for a while because she gave me a sandwich and a magazine.

I read it quickly. It was something about global warming and forest fires. 

After another hour of waiting, I heard a scream, bloody murder scream. I jumped and rushed to the door. The scream was from my Aunt.

I jiggled the doorknob. It didn’t move. After many more attempts to open the door, another scream joined hers. A much quieter scream but I could hear it. 

The door flung open, almost hitting my face, the doctor apologized for keeping me waiting so long and ushered me into the room where I saw many things happening. My Aunt was holding a crying baby as a doctor quickly gave it a shot. My uncle was sitting next to my aunt comforting her. The nurse was typing something on a computer, and a light flickered above the seat to which I was ushered to.

I thought back to a few days ago. If I had been shown this seat a week ago, I would scowl, look at the doctor, roll my eyes and complain of such horrible quality of the light above the chair.

Instead, I hugged the doctor. He looked shocked. I quickly sat down and then looked back at the doctor, he was also typing something on a computer. He then walked to my Aunt and told her they would be back with the “paper” in about 4 or 5 hours, and that he would have our lunch brought to this room.

The next 5 hours went much slower than the previous night. A doctor rushed into the room mid-day, took the baby from my Aunt’s arms, and hooked it up to some machines. I didn’t know what happened and I didn’t ask as my Aunt was quietly sobbing. My Uncle sat in the chair next to me. His hands in his face. His knuckles white. We were silent for 4 hours.

After a while, a doctor came with the “paper”.

My Aunt read through it, eyed the baby in the corner, hooked up to a bunch of machines, and began crying her eyes out. My uncle did the same. I was handed the paper and my eyes quickly caught on Survival Rate. The number next to it made my whole body shake and I looked at the baby hooked up to a bunch of machines again.

Survival Rate: 0.04%

I went to the side of the bed to talk to my Aunt but my Uncle grabbed my shoulder and pulled me out of the room and down the hallway to the elevator before I got the chance.

“Where are we going?”

“You’re going home.” He said. Tears were still running down his cheeks.

“But…. what about the baby…….” 

Silence.

“Will the baby make it?”

Silence again.

The elevator hit the lowest level and my uncle handed me 4 things. 

#1 A 10 dollar bill with a sticky note which read Taxi Money.

#2 A plane ticket back home.

#3 A step by step guide of how to check into the airport

#4 A piece of paper torn out of a notebook page which had a phone number on it. His phone number.

A taxi was waiting when I got outside. I gave the person the 10 dollar bill and then watched my uncle reenter the building as the taxi gradually drove away. 

I followed the instructions on how to sign in and board the airplane. 

Before I knew it I was home. I entered the phone number on my phone. I texted “Hi” it was left on Read.

A week later my belongings that were left when the ambulance arrived were shipped to my house in a big box.

The box contained my clothes, shoes, a hair comb, and the book that was left on the bed that I was reading. I looked at it and was surprised to see it. This wasn’t mine and they knew that.

I picked it up to see if my bookmark had fallen out, but instead, a folded piece of paper fell from it. 

“Dear Sophie,

I’m sorry to leave you confused and worried. On the night your Aunt’s water broke she had another seizure while giving birth causing the baby to not be born properly. He was also a month premature and was born with blue skin because he couldn’t breathe. The doctors quickly fixed this and we thought he would be fine. The paper from the doctors proved this wrong. I sent you home this book because I read it when I was a kid also, my foster mother gave me the book when I moved to college after seeing I had put it back on the shelf without finishing. “All stories must be finished young man, whether they are a thousand of pages or if they are simply a few sentences”. Our baby might have finished without even a sentence, without a word. But I can’t let another story be left unfinished so here’s this book as a reminder of our trip, and of our lovely baby angel who is watching from the clouds.“

A hot tear ran down my face and I put down the letter and picked up the book. After all, no stories should be left unfinished.

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