Friday, December 9, 2016

Painful Realizations

                It was the August 21st of 2000.  Larry was in Brooklyn, New York staying with his Aunt, Uncle and two cousins.  Larry is 16-year-old, 6’ tall and weighs 125lbs.  He is very stubborn and lives in Lakewood, Ohio, which is a superb of Cleveland.  He drives a red Chevy Blazer.  There is a war going on between the Americans and the Japanese.  For the first time since the American Civil War a war is being fought on American soil.  There are also battles in Japan as well.  Larry, along with his family he’s staying with, is indoors listening to planes fly by and gun shots fire.  They are not paranoid for they are confident with the superb force of the U.S. Military.  Larry and Kera- a 5’4” 13 year old with the same personality as Larry- were in the living room, which is right by the front door of the house watching TV.  They are talking to each other mostly since the program keeps getting interrupted to hear the latest about the war.  Kera’s parents are in the basement and watching the news so they can find out the latest on the war.


After a while everyone was on the first floor.   All of a sudden two Japanese soldiers came through the door.  One grabbed Kera and was going to use her as a hostage.  Larry saw what was happening and ran at him.  The man not holding Kera took out a revolver and aimed at Larry.  Larry didn’t stop running, he grabbed the soldier’s arm threw it downward, and when the gun was aimed at the Japanese’s thigh, he squeezed the trigger and the bullet shot the soldier.  He dropped his gun, which Larry caught with his right hand.  He switched the gun to his left hand pulled out his pocketknife, opened it up (it had a one hand opener on it) and stabbed the neck of the soldier he just shot and let go letting the man die with a knife in him.  He then saw the other soldier getting a gun out of his pants.  Larry immediately lifted his left arm and shot the soldier in the chest (He was taller than Kera so his chest was above Kera’s head) before he could even get his gun out.  He then realized the soldier probably had a bulletproof vest on but now he had some time.  He switched the gun from his left hand to his right hand.  With his left hand he grabbed Kera’s arm and pulled her toward him.  As he pulled Kera toward him with his left, he shot the soldier in the head with the gun in his right.  Kera was scared, as most anyone would be when about to be taken hostage.  She buried her head in Larry’s chest.  Larry thought everyone was safe until he saw another soldier come through the door.  Before the soldier could even take in account the people he saw, Larry shot him right in the forehead.  He then placed the gun in the back of his pants.  Larry’s uncle shut the door and locked it; he then went back to where he was standing which was right beside his wife.  Kera’s mom had her arms around Daniel consoling him, because he was traumatized by what he just witnessed.  Kera’s mom looked up and said, “Did you have to do that in front of him?”

Larry disregarded the question but the question angered Kera she just looked up and gave a dirty look toward her mother and said, “What did you just say?”

“Kera look at your brother he’s traumatized by what he saw.”

“I was fucking taken hostage they were going to put a gun to my head.”

Larry cut in and said, “Kera calm down”

“No, I won’t let her treat you with the same bullshit she does to me.”

Larry responded, “Kera please just stop”


Larry then grabbed Kera again and pulled her closer, he whispered in her ear, “Kera your mom just saw her daughter about to be taken hostage and now her son is in mental shock.  Something bad happened to both her kids now that you’re safe she’s going to worry about the other who’s not yet, she’s speaking out of fear Kera so calm the fuck down.”

Kera did calm down after that.  Then her mother said, “Larry, look at what you just saved.”

This time Larry was the one angry, “What the hell did you just say?”

“Look at what you just saved, look at that disrespect she shows her mother.”

“She could have died today that doesn’t affect you at all?”

“That’s not what I mean, you just could have told Daniel to leave the room before you went shooting people.”

“I sincerely hope you don’t believe I could have done that.”

“Well why not?”

“Do you know why I’m still alive?  There were two soldiers I had to run from where your standing to here which is about 15ft.  How did I run 15 feet before he could grab his gun and pull the trigger?  The answer is that he hesitated, and he was in shock that I was running at him and he wasn’t sure if he wanted to shoot a child yet, he hesitated I didn’t, he’s dead I’m alive.”

“What about the other one how did you kill him before he killed you?”

“He didn’t want to kill me until after I killed the soldier, he thought I’d be intimidated by him when he had Kera, I shot the most frightening shot of my life tonight, The first wasn’t supposed to kill him, it was to get Kera back and daze him.  That’s exactly what I did, then when Kera was safe I shot.”

“What difference does it make, before you ran you could have told Daniel to leave the room.”

“He would have been too scared to move, and if I did, they know I’m about to strike you never give off that warning.  If I had given that off I would have died.” 

“Well because of that judgement my son is scarred for life.”

“Bullshit, this is temporary.”

“How do you know?”

“I just know”

“Now you’re showing disrespect.”

“I’m speaking the truth, your thinking is off and you’re too blind to see that.”

She turned toward her husband, “Bill, do something.”

He just looked at her and said, “I’m sorry honey I have nothing to say.”

She gave him a very shocked look; Larry and Kera were shocked at what they heard as well finally Larry said, “Just think about what you’re saying.”

“I have, I always think before I talk you can’t tell me I don’t, my son is traumatized because of your actions you could have showed better judgement.”

“He would have been more traumatized if he saw her sister die rather than three strangers”

Kera’s mom opened her mouth as if to speak but she couldn’t she realized Larry was right so she looked up and said, “I’m sorry Larry.”

Kera ran upstairs realizing there was no more argument.  Kera’s mom said, “I think I should go talk to her.”

 Larry knew what Kera was doing up there so he said, “No, she needs time to calm down and to get over what just happened.”

  Kera’s mom believed what Larry said and said, “Go up and calm her down.”

Larry went upstairs to see Kera but before he left he took the knife out of the soldier’s neck and washed the blood off onto the soldier’s shirt.  The blood hadn’t dry for an unknown reason but Larry was glad that his knife wasn’t stained in blood.  After he got the blood off he put it back in his pocket and went upstairs.  When he walked through the door, Kera knew, without looking, who it was, she turned over and said holding back tears, “Larry, Why did you save my life?”

                “Because I care about you”

                “Do you know why I asked the question?”

                “Yes I do, you don’t want to live in a life with your parents.”

                “Exactly, there’s proof my mom doesn’t care about me.”

                “Your mom was scared Kera, her daughter was almost held hostage and her son was traumatized because he saw the whole thing”

                “Oh really, It’s funny you won the argument when you said ‘He would have been more traumatized if he saw her sister die rather than three strangers’ something like that right?”

                “Yes, Kera” he said rolling his eyes as he knew what she was getting at and didn’t know how to respond.”

                “That’s proof she doesn’t care about me.”

                “I’m not here to argue with you”

                “You’re not arguing because you agree”

                “We know each other too well”

                As she turned her head back around she said, “Yea”

                Larry now knew exactly what Kera was talking about; he came to the reality that he believed it was true, for he knew that he won the argument exactly how Kera had said.  Larry felt really bad for Kera, seeing her cry didn’t help this.  He wanted to help her, console her and let her cry on his shoulder, but he knew Kera wasn’t the type to cry on shoulders, he watched there helplessly.  He then lied down on the floor and went to sleep.  Kera fell asleep shortly after she turned over. 


                About an hour after Larry had fallen asleep, Kera’s mom became rather worried that they’d been in there too long.  She walked in the door and found Larry sleeping on the floor and Kera asleep on the bed.  She didn’t want to wake them for she still felt a little bad.  By this time Daniel was over what he had seen.  She left the room and sat alone thinking.  Daniel was also asleep.  She picked up a book and started to read however she only saw words, What was being read was not processing in her mind.  She had too many other things on her mind.  She still continued to pretend to read.  She kept asking herself the question “Am I a bad mother?” 

                She didn’t say it aloud.  This made her cry.  She didn’t want to go for a drive in fear of soldiers. 


About a half-hour later, Kera awoke.  She saw Larry asleep on the floor.  She looked over at him, as a smile came over her face as it finally processed into her mind that Larry risked his life for hers.  She noticed that the gun was still sticking out in the back of Larry’s pants.  She got up and took the gun.  She scrutinized it and then opened the chamber; It had two bullets left.  She placed it in one of her drawers.  She then walked over Larry and out the door.  Her mother saw her as Kera came downstairs.  She called her over.  Kera gave her a disgusted look, rolled her eyes and then continued walking.  This saddened Kera’s mom.  She didn’t bother following her; she was too disgusted with herself.  Kera went down to the basement and turned on the television.  She put the channel on MTV, which is a station made for teenage youth.  It mostly plays music.  Finally Kera’s mom rose from her seat and went downstairs to talk, to Kera.  She began by saying, “Kera, I know you’re not too pleased with me right now, and I know that you don’t want to talk to me nor forgive me but for whatever it’s worth I’m sorry.”

Kera responded avoiding looking at her mother, “You should apologize to Larry too, I mean that’s bullshit he saves my life and you yell at him for it.” 

“I already did apologize to Larry”


“Kera, I love you, is it possible to find it in your heart to forgive me?”

“No, What you did today was bullshit.”

Kera’s mom began to cry, “I know, I know, I’m sorry you have to believe me though I love you.”

She looked at her mother and snapped “You don’t love me, you love Daniel. The only reason you believed Larry was because he informed you of the truth about how Daniel would feel if he hadn’t, he had to say that for you to realize it, you didn’t realize it when he talked about my death if he hadn’t.”

“Kera, that’s not what happened.”

“Bullshit I was right there, I heard and saw the whole thing.”

“I love you”

“Bullshit.” She snapped back.

Kera’s mom was crying hard now but Kera showed no compassion Kera’s mom finally said, “I know you don’t believe me, I don’t even know if you should, I just hope you can find it in your heart to forgive me.”

“No I can’t, and I won’t”

Kera’s mom got up and left crying.  Kera just continued to watch MTV.  Kera’s mom continued upstairs in her room and went to sleep.  Kera continued to watch TV not feeling one bit bad for her mom, nobody could blame her.  Larry came down about 45 minutes afterwards.  He joined Kera and watched.  Kera turned and told Larry about the conversation she had with her mother.  Larry didn’t say anything about it.  He thought himself it was bullshit what went on that day, but he didn’t believe the other things Kera said, he didn’t want to argue though, he was just happy Kera was alive, and that he had done a good thing. 


Later on that day the Japanese surrendered to American soldiers.  The war was over.  The next day Larry packed his things and was ready to drive home.  Kera yelled at him to take her.  Larry told her to pack her things. Kera went upstairs and packed a lot of clothes.  Larry told her to ask her parents.  Kera just handed her bag to Larry and yelled, “Mom, dad, I’m going with Larry to Ohio.” 


Larry laughed and carried the bag to his car.  Kera’s parents didn’t object.  They didn’t want to anger Kera any more than they had already.  Kera never did forgive her mom, but she returned to New York three weeks later.  Her and her mom almost never spoke to each other.  When Kera wanted something she went to her dad.  Larry and Kera always kept in contact with each other with the use of telephone and AOL.  Nobody in the household would ever forget what happened. 

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