How are you even blinking? Your shit is pulling everything back. And what is going on with that hair line my boy? Imma leave him alone but rotom, I got to get on you. We caught you. You knew what you were doing. So yes, I do. Jonathan got quiet, his hands were busy pulling at loose peices of string that had been caught on one of your blankets. You looked up from your folding and noticed the sad expression on his face. You set aside your clothes and sat down beside him.
Jonathan moved his head to your shoulder, his eyes closing whenever you continued to play with his hair. Jonathan stopped over by your house the day you were supposed to leave, he wanted a chance to say goodbye. You were already out in the drive away, helping your dad figure out a way to put all the suitcases into the trunk of the car.
Maybe your mother will be better at this. You brushed off your hands on your overalls before you looked over and saw Jonathan awkwardly standing to the side with his hands in his pockets. Jonathan nodded, shifting his weight back and forth as he tried to think of what to say. You smiled at him. You laughed and returned his embrace, pulling away as you gave him a big kiss on the cheek. You went to turn around but Jonathan was already there, and before you could even process anything he bent down and gave you a quick kiss.
Jonathan came quickly out of his room, only coming to a halt whenever he was in front of his mother. Joyce looked up at her son and smiled, she handed him a letter and a cardboard box. Jonathan took them and a bright smile showed up on his face as he looked down at them. He hurried back into his room, setting the box aside on his nightstand before he tore apart the envelope. You wrote about how nice the lakehouse was, how pretty the scenery was and about all the little adventures you and your family had so far on your trip.
Jonathan noticed you had drawn small doodles of rabbits and frogs all over the paper, they were even painted with the set of watercolors he had given you on your birthday. He saved up for them for months, and it showed by how proud he was when he gave it to you and saw that you loved it. The earrings are for your mum, and be sure to tell her that I insist she accept them, she deserves it. Everyday after that, Jonathan had made it a habit to ask his mother if there was a letter from you. Until one day he noticed about two weeks had passed without word from you.
Joyce would come home and gently let him know there was nothing, but reasoned the post was just being slow or you were busy with your family. And at first Jonathan understood, he thought it was a reasonable explanation, so he stopped worrying about it.
Jonathan was driving home from picking a few things up from the grocery store for his mom, but he drove by your house and noticed that your family car was parked in the driveway.
If possible, her face got even more somber. It took Jonathan a few moments to register what she was saying, and he was surprised by his lack of reaction.
Jonathan watched her disappear into the house, trying to understand why his mind was going blank at a time when he should feel sad or angry even. Your sister nodded, her hand was now covering her mouth as tears piled up at the edges of her eyes. When he stepped through his front door he was met with more silence, Joyce must have been working late again. Jonathan closed his door whenever he went inside, his eyes remaining fixated on your present to him. Some of them were life-like while others were dressed in little jackets and hats, having tea parties by a river.
Jonathan moved to sit on the edge of his bed, despite the whirl of emotions going through his head, he found himself smiling. To his surprise, the next pages were filled with portraits. Some were of him, others were of Will or even Joyce, they were all smiling in each of them. He spent the next couple of minutes going through the rest of it, and he found himself growing disappointed whenever he was reaching the end.
Another one showed up on the corner of the page, and he brought his hand up to realize tears were falling freely from his eyes. A few tears slowly turned into sobs, then he was laying on the side of his bed, holding your sketchbook tightly against his chest while he cried.
On the very last page, there was a small handwritten note instead.