Unfortunate Son: Excerpt

January 12, 2015

I think it’s time for an excerpt from Unfortunate Son. In this snippet, Evan and his parents have had a confrontation over them hiding things from him, and his mother was injured in the process. They’re in the emergency room, and Evan is overwhelmed by everything that’s been happening over the previous couple of weeks.

Evan stood just outside the curtain that hid his mother’s emergency room bed. The doctor had arrived a few minutes earlier, and the tiny space hadn’t allowed for Evan to stay during the examination. To his relief, his mother had roused briefly when the paramedics arrived at the house, and though they’d still taken every precaution, strapping her to a backboard before moving her to the stretcher, she’d been able to answer a few questions as they took her to the ambulance.

There had never been a question of who would ride to the hospital with her. Evan had given his father one hard look, and Charles Day had backed away toward his own car.

Evan didn’t know where his father ended up after that. He tried to tell himself he didn’t care, but he looked around anyway. A few dozen feet down the hall, he could see the edge of the waiting room, mostly deserted at midafternoon. His father sat in the first row of seats, looking like a washrag that had been wrung out and tossed, crumpled, into a corner.

Despite everything, Evan felt a stab of empathy. He knew his mother’s fall had been an accident, a stupid accident, but the image of his father’s hand striking his mother would not leave his mind. He couldn’t forgive and forget, not yet. Maybe not ever.

“Mr. Day?”

Evan focused on the young woman who stood holding the curtain open. He didn’t know if she was a doctor, a nurse, or some random person off the street, and at that moment, he couldn’t care less. “Is she okay?” he asked, taking a step closer. He felt someone else step up next to him, probably his father, but he didn’t shift his focus.

“The bleeding stopped, but she’s in and out of consciousness. We’re having a portable X-ray brought over, but you can see her for a minute if you want.”

His father took a step forward, and Evan almost reached out to stop him on pure instinct, but he managed to hold back. Yes, he was still pissed as hell, but the fact was that this was his wife in the hospital, and Evan couldn’t actually stop him from seeing her.

Instead, he followed behind. The young woman, apparently a nurse, warned them not to touch her or jostle the bed, since they were still concerned about a possible neck injury.

His mother looked tiny in the bed, her skin pale even against the stark white sheets. A stabilizer had been wrapped around her neck, an IV inserted into her arm, and a clip-on monitor attached to her finger. Machines beeped, and the noises of the ER drifted in, but the sounds faded as Evan watch his father bend close, careful not to touch, even as Evan could see him straining to hold himself back.

More of his anger drained away. He still didn’t know why they’d hidden the money from him, and he couldn’t think about forgiveness for that until he knew why, dammit. But he knew his parents loved each other, even if he wasn’t so sure how they felt about him. He couldn’t hold that against them, could he?

I sure as hell can, he thought.

Something bubbled up inside him, a well of emotion so tangled and dark he couldn’t sort it out. Anger, resentment, and frustration swirled together into a blackness he couldn’t fight. Didn’t know if he wanted to fight.

His skin crawled, and he had to get out of there right that second or the top of his head was going to blow right off his body.

He spun on his heel and fled.

7 Responses to “Unfortunate Son: Excerpt”

  1. Angela says:

    Great excerpt. definitely has me interested and wanting more.

  2. Missy1980 says:

    OMG!!! This except was really important to try to understand Evan’s past..

  3. K13 says:

    Thank you for this excerpt. Really deep

  4. BabyBarlow says:

    Ty for posting this. I want to hug Evan and his mom so bad

  5. H.B. says:

    Thank you for the excerpt.

  6. Debra E says:

    That’s intense. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Shae Connor says:

    Thanks, all. Glad you… well, I don’t know if “enjoyed it” is quite right, but thank you. :)

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