Birthday Girl

She hadn’t shown any interest in her forthcoming party at all.
Not a flicker.
Still, these days she didn’t show any enthusiasm about anything really.
But it was all arranged, and it was going to be one big celebration.

Sitting in her chair as the guests milled around her, she nodded and smiled, accepting offers of tea and sandwiches, but looking vaguely into the distance.
As the sun shone through the window, so a ghost of a smile teased her lips, rising through her cheeks and into her eyes, now shining like beacons.
When it was time to cut the cake, blazing with eight candles sporting the number 10, she stood of her own accord, resting her hands crossways on her stick, smiled lovingly at the person next to her and closed her eyes to make a wish.

She died a week later.

At the funeral, everyone commented on how animated she had become that day, and how lovely it was that she had enjoyed herself with all her family and friends.
As a tribute to her life and memory, photographs had been put up on display, one in particular catching her daughter’s eye.
She searched out her brother, and drew his attention to the person foremost in the frame.
‘Is that who I think it is?’ she asked.
‘Where?’ he mumbled in response.
‘There!’ she said pointing.
He looked closer, and his jaw dropped in disbelief.
‘It’s impossible! But she’s looking right at him!’
His sister thought back to that happy moment.
‘That was when she changed. Just before we cut the cake, do you remember? She seemed to ‘come alive’ and take an interest in who was there and what was going on.’
He did, and smiled.

Turning back to the photograph, he looked at the image of his late father, young and laughing, as he stood at his wife’s side, gently holding her elbow as she’d bent forward to blow out the candles.
‘You old rascal,’ he said to himself. ‘You came to take her Home, didn’t you.’

walk to forever
Image: Walk to Forever by Monika Colichio

Advertisement

About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! In November 2020, we lost our beloved Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. We decided to have a photo put on canvas as we had for her predecessor Barney. We now have three pictures of our fur babies on the wall as we found a snapshot of Kizzy, my GSD when Hubby and I first met so had hers done too. On February 24th 2022 we were blessed to find Maya, a 13 week old GSD pup who has made her own place in our hearts. You can follow our training methods, photos and her growth in my blog posts. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
This entry was posted in fiction, short stories and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Birthday Girl

  1. scifihammy says:

    This is just so sad!

  2. Eric says:

    Beautiful. Such a warm and soft sentiment about death. We all hope it’s as you describe. Well done, Pen.

    • Thanks Eric. I feel there is something special ‘Afterwards’ and would like to think that someone we loved would come and help us on our journey.

  3. Pingback: Walk to Forever | pensitivity101

Comments are closed.