Derek held the phone a bit away from his ear, hearing his father, who’d recently divorced wife five making excuses as to why he had forgotten Derek’s birthday.
The most hurtful thing his mother said to him before she died was that; “You are just like your father.” He was so angry, he snapped at her, stomped out, and never forgave her.
As he heard his father making excuses, using words he’d used before, excuses Derek had used before, he realised his mother was right.
He couldn’t breathe, cut the call, went into the bathroom, into a booth and shut the door, unable to catch his breath.
Outside of taking the step of marriage, he was like his father, unable to really bond, unable to really love.
Derek shook his head, as if the thoughts would fly out, as if they’d be negated, but they didn’t leave.
He was like his father, and he didn’t want to be.