Bianca had a day off and needed to keep herself busy lest she became paralyzed by grief. She felt like hacking something, and she was at it all day, but she just couldn’t get focused enough to find the right entry. All day she got the same error message over and over again: access denied. After several hours of failed attempts, she lost it. Despite trying to keep her grief at bay, it was with her all along.
“I can’t handle this!! I want to be where you are, babe! Please let me come with you! Everyone will understand,” she cried.
She had her moment, but it wouldn’t be the last. She cried until she had no tears left. And then, she got up and made dinner for her children.
Just as Brandon said a few hours earlier, when Lance came home, he called a family meeting.
“I know it’s late, so I’m gonna get to the point. Your mother is going to go away for a week. She’ll be gone when you wake up. I just didn’t want you guys to be alarmed when she wasn’t around.”
“That’s it,” Allen asked.
“Yes,” Amira said.
“Oh! You could have told us that in the morning then. Where are you going, mom?”
“Ummm…just a little…staycation.”
The meeting broke, and Amira went upstairs to pack and go to bed. Everyone else should have follow suit, but they needed more. Something wasn’t right about the situation. Brandon went to go watch TV, and the boys went with him.
“Dad…what was that all about,” Allen asked.
“Your mother just needs some time alone, that’s all. She hasn’t had a break since you guys came along so…I’m gonna let her go away.”
Brandon and Allen both knew that Lance was sensitive about his mother. When he left the room, Allen pressed Brandon a little harder.
“Come on dad…I’m not a child! I’m not blind either. I know something’s up.”
Brandon looked at his son and searched his eyes to see if he could find genuine concern or gossip material. He looked behind him to make sure Lance was gone and gave Allen a little bit more information.
“Ok. You’re right. Things haven’t been ok. We just need some time apart to think things through.”
“I see. You know she’s not coming back, right?”
“How do you know that? Why would you even say that?”
“She a wildflower! She’s not a rose you can put in water in a vase to keep it alive. She’s a dandelion! She needs to be outside…free!”
He looked at his son with one raised eyebrow. He was astonished at what he just said. That was something he had never considered.
“When did you get to be so wise, son?”
He sent Allen to bed and cleaned up all the dishes. He was quite exhausted as he headed toward the stairs. Dandelion…where did he come up with that, he thought.
“Psssst,” someone said as he walked past the kitchen.
“Allen? I thought I sent you to bed.”
“I’m not Allen,” Giancarlo said.
“Whoa! Where did you come from?”
“How are you here?”
“Well, funny thing…I kinda died.”
“I can’t believe it! Am I dreaming?”
“I take it you’ve never seen a ghost before.”
“So, what’s up, bro? How did the date go?”
“No! What happened?”
“I’m too tired to give you all the details, but in 140 characters or less, she is not the same Sim I fell in love with, and we need to reevaluate our relationship. I sent her away so we can think.”
“Oh brother. I’m so sorry. I didn’t think it was going to be that bad! Are you ok?”
“I’m fine. If she wants to come back, and I want her to, then I guess we’ll be going through a lot of counseling. But, if I find I can go a week without her and feel great, then she won’t be back. Plain and simple.”
“Oy. I did not want this for you, Brandon.”
“No one ever does. I gotta get to bed, G. I hope to see you again.”
“Maybe you will and maybe you won’t.”
Brandon started toward the stairs again, yawning the whole way there. He wasn’t sure if he really was talking to Giancarlo’s ghost or sleep walking. Either way, he was glad to speak to him once more.