Connor ran his fingers over the curves of stone, traced along the letters and numbers engraved in it. That’s all this really was. Dory wasn’t here. She never had been. But, she’d left an indelible mark on all their lives, even only being with them for four years.
Dad had tried to drown his pain and couldn’t stand to face Mom. Even all these years after they’d reconciled, some of that stayed between them. He could see the cracks it left, even if no one else seemed to.
Rian had left town almost as soon as he could and only made the trip home a couple times a year. Like seeing that empty spot Dory used to fill was more than he could bear.
For so many years, Adrian had taken the full weight of her death on his shoulders. He’d been in charge that night while their parents and Rian were both out on date nights. And Connor knew it was why Adrian had always gravitated toward the arson cases since he’d first gotten his badge. And it had brought him into Kayla’s presence. And with her, Connor had seen his brother the happiest he’d ever been. Now, they were going to be welcoming a daughter. Would they see Dory in her?
Callum had tread the same path as their father. Only he had gone a lot farther down it and didn’t have anyone to pull him off. It took him too long to realize alcohol and drugs wouldn’t erase the pain. He’s finally there though he still carries some of those shadows with him.
Darcie had been a wild child. Well, not wild but extremely energetic. She’d never had a problem keeping up with the older brothers. But, Dory’s death snuffed that out of her. She’d always been a nurturer, even when she was chasing after the boys, and she seemed to focus on that. But, she’d still passed that fire on to both her daughters.
And Connor himself, he knew she still inspired so much of his art. Even if there was no sign of her in the picture, she was still there. He’s wished, when he first started painting as a kid, that somehow it could bring her back, help heal his family. He’d long since learned that would never happen, but she still made it into nearly every painting, every sketch. He couldn’t seem to keep her out of them.
She was still leaving her mark on them.
Today’s Just Jot It January prompt was “indelible” from Ruth. I’ve written Adrian & Callum’s stories already and how their baby sister’s death affected them. But this is the first time I’ve looked at it all from Connor’s POV.