Moving On...


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“Mom, you’re blocking my view.”

“That’s because you’re not listening to me. Switch off the TV for some time, will you?”

“I already told you Maa…. I don’t wanna talk about any of it. I’m perfectly fine and perfectly irritated cause I can’t see Joey’s face on my TV. Now will you move?” Rene turned on the couch and hollered in the direction of the study, “Dad! Get mom off my back, will you?”

Her father’s house coat clad figure emerged from the Study, an ancient pipe stuck between his shapely lips; the only feature she’d inherited from him. “Marriet, will you leave the child alone?”

Her mother continued sitting before her like a plump hen, a worried frown creasing her fine brow as her gaze darted from daughter to father and back. “Henry, she isn’t a child anymore!”

“Then stop treating her like one! Just leave her alone.”

“But this has to happen someday! If you refuse to talk about it, I will do it.” She turned on Rene, “You really need to get a hold on yourself honey!”

Rene jumped to her feet, “I’ve had enough Mom! I’m fine! I’ve said this a billion times now. Stop being a pest!”

Her father thoughtfully puffed at his pipe then said, “Your mother has a point you know dear. It’s been quite some time now. You really must move on; do something with your life!”

“Like what dad? I have a good job that I’m working at. It’s got good prospects. I could be up for a promotion any time now and…”

“You know that is not what we’re concerned about Rene.” Her mother cut in curtly. “Look,” Her father added hastily, “It’s not like we’re not proud of you sweetheart. We’re both really proud of what a great career you’re making for yourself. It’s just that…..”

“Don’t beat around the bush Henry!” Her mother cut in again, “Rene, we wish you to lead a happy life sweety. And I think it’s time you start looking for someone to share it with, that’s all!”

“That’s All!?” Rene looked incredulously from one parent to the other. “Is that it mom? That’s All? Well, that isn’t a tall order. I’ll just walk up to the corner store and see if a guy is up for sale!”

“That’s not what your mother meant Rene. Stop behaving like a child.”

“Oh cummon dad! You know how busy I am all week! All I get is a Sunday to myself. Can’t I spend that in peace now?”

“Rene, all we’re saying is that you need to start dating darling.”

“I’ll date when I want to dad! And cummon! It’s not like I’m alone or anything. I’ve got you guys!”

Marriet and Henry exchanged worried glances as Rene walked over to the kitchen. “Besides, Dad there is absolutely no man who could stand any comparison with you. After seeing the best, how do I settle for the second-best?”

“Thanks sweetheart….. I’m touched. But You still have to find yourself someone.”

“Are you trying to say that you guys wanna get rid of me?” Rene stood with her hands on her hips, glaring from one to the other.

“You know that’s not true Rene!” Marriet said, aghast.

“I know mom… I was just messin with you.” Rene said, with an affectionate smile. She glanced down at the bread and butter on the counter and said reflectively, “I’d have offered you guys a bite, but…” and she looked sheepishly at them. Her father laughed but Marriet said, “Even you shouldn’t be having that honey. It’s too much junk food! Why don’t you grab a glass of milk instead?”

“Ok fine!” She walked over to the fridge, poured herself some milk, picked two cookies to go with it and headed back to the TV.

“What!” she snapped when she found them tailing her. “Stop following me around!”

“Rene at least say you’ll give it a thought!”

“Do we really have to do this Dad?”

“Yes”

“Ok..” She turned to them, “Fine… I’ll think about it.”

Both of them beamed at her. “Don’t you two go grinning like that! I said just think, ok!”

“Fine! We’re not saying anything!”

“But tell me seriously! What’s with you guys and this obsession? Can’t a girl live by herself?”

The parents exchanged a look and both came to sit on either side of her.

“You know Rene,” Marriet began. “When you inscribe R.I.P. on people’s gravestones, it takes more than just that for us to actually be at peace.” A silvery tear ran down her cheek. Rene looked from her to her father. She saw the track of the tear that had disappeared into his beard.

“You know the worst part of having you guys this way?” She asked them, her own eyes welling up. “I can’t hug ghosts…!”


Alone...


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