Nils and Samantha left Syracuse at midnight. The drive in their new 2021 Tesla Model S Long Range Plus would take about twelve hours with stops. Nils, Henrik’s oldest, lived the farthest from his father, who lived in Chicago. The pair were expected at noon, according to the invitation they received:
Come at noon on the 24th of December. Your father.
“I wonder what your father wants,” Sam asked Leif.
“I dunno. I couldn’t get ahold of him on the phone and he’s not on social media. He doesn’t use email. He writes letters.” Leif replied.
“What did he write you?”
“He asked how we were doing. That’s all. It’s Christmas, for gosh sakes Sam. He probably wants to see his kids. We haven’t seen him in eight years. We’re always going somewhere else at this time of the year. The last four years we went to your mother’s house. Or, was it the last eight years?”
“At least my mother is not a holy roller like your dad. I don’t want all that baby Jesus nonsense,” Sam huffed.
“My dad is OK. He’s just got the notion that people ought to, you know, get religion.”
“Well, he certainly wasn’t religious. Your mother divorced him because of his infidelity. That makes your mother more religious than your father.”
“My mother practices her own religion – denouncing the world, the flesh, and dad every chance she gets.”
“Whatever you do Leif, don’t mention the abortion. Your father will give us all kinds of grief. He doesn’t care that a woman has rights. He doesn’t care about overpopulation. He’s a misogynist. I’m sure of it. I’m sure he thinks that a woman’s place is in the home.”
“Is that what your women’s studies crystal ball PhD tells you? Cuzzzz . . . you only met my father once, when Tilde and Jonas had Jack.”
“Your mom told me all I need to know. She said that your father was on the road most of the time with his job. She was at home raising kids. What about her life?”
“Let’s go see him one last time, Sam. Let’s make it work. We’ll see my brother Leif and Tilde and Vivi. You can hang out with them and not my dad. Did you bring the juicer gift for him?”
“I got it. Mom was going to throw it out, but I grabbed it and found a box for it.”
Tilde and Jonas left Madison, Wisconsin at nine in the morning. The drive to Chicago in their Prius would take roughly three hours with holiday traffic navigating the snow squalls along the open highways. Their two boys and their son-turned daughter rode sat crunched in the back seat, their phones and earbuds activated.
“We haven’t seen your father in, what, eight years? It was when . . .” Jonas used the rear-view mirror to look at the three in the back seat. Turning back, he whispered “it was when Jack was born. What will he think about Jacklyn? You never wrote him back and told him.”
“I don’t know and I don’t care.”
“What if your dad got Jac a boy’s toy?”
“I’ll ask him for the receipt and we’ll exchange it for girl’s toy. He’ll have to accept Jac sooner or later. Besides, we probably won’t see my father again for another eight years. We don’t want to be around his judgementalism. He has his opinions and I . . . we have ours.”
“I don’t know if I accept the whole you-know-what-business,” Jonas whispered.
“You better or I will find someone who will,” Tilde huffed.
“We’re giving your father the juicer for Christmas, right?”
“Yeah. It’s in the back. My father better be vaccinated. I’m not exposing myself and the kids to him if he’s not vaccinated. Like the TV says, “The greatest gift you can give yourself and others is to protect them from COVID.”
Leif and Joy left Petosky at two in the morning. Leif wanted to be at dad’s place by noon, as the invitation had requested.
Leif carried their two little ones, still in their PJs, to the back seat of their Plymouth van. He put them in car seats and wrapped them in blankets. Joy kept the Kringle, stuffed with crisp Michigan apples in a cinnamon sprinkled filling, flat on her lap. The drive would take about seven hours with the two little ones.
Joy and the girls slept while Leif drove down route 131. They woke up when Leif pulled into a gas station in Grand Rapids.
“The last time we saw your father was when Jack was born,” Joy began. “These two weren’t born yet. He hasn’t seen them. Did you ever respond to your father’s letters and send him pictures of Lena and Lyndsay?”
“Ah . . . I didn’t get around to it,” Leif replied. “You know that I’ve been busy with work. And we wouldn’t have that venison in the freezer if I didn’t go out hunting all those weekends. Besides, their pictures are on Facebook if he wanted to see them. Anyway, he’ll see them now, I guess,” Leif replied.
“Don’t you think he would have liked hearing from you?” Joy prodded.
“I would have been nice hearing from him when I was a kid. He was away for work a lot–working two jobs or on the road. He was too tired when he got home and not all that interested in doing things with us.”
“He did what he had to,” Joy replied.
“I guess,” Leif mumbled.
“Did you ever read Tilde’s Twitter feed?” Joy went on. “Wow! What a holy roller! Tilde really believes her opinions amount to moral virtue.”
“Who doesn’t these days?” Leif shrugged his shoulders.
Joy turned to Jonas and whispered “Tilde and Jonas are calling Jack Jacklyn now. Can you believe it? Why would they do that to their son?”
Leif shrugged his shoulders again. “I guess they’re are doing what they have to.”
“Yeah, right,” Joy snapped back.
After a few miles, Joy began again. “I wonder about your sister Vivi. I had to tell her that “Outstanding Balance” on her credit card statement meant what she owed and not that she was being praised by the credit card company.”
“She’s not the brightest bulb in the room, but she’s a good kid.”
“Her Facebook feed says the world will end soon because of climate change.”
“Yeah, well, if the world ends soon, it’ll be because people are up in arms about people not being up in arms about climate change. If Vivi starts talking about cow farts, I’ll have to leave the room so she doesn’t see me cracking up.
When the van reached the Indiana state line, Joy asked “Did you pack the juicer for your dad?”
“Yeah, it’s in the trunk.”
Vivi and Dillan left Rochester, Minnesota at five-thirty in the morning. The five to six-hour drive would get them to dad’s place just before noon on Christmas Eve. After loading up the Bolt EUV they headed to Chicago with their one-year-old Zoey.
“Does your father know that you are vegan?” asked Dillan.
“I don’t think so. I never wrote him back.” Vivi replied.
“Mom wants nothing to do with him.”
“And that’s why you have nothing to do with him?”
“I think mom would rather that I don’t. So, I don’t.”
“Huh. Did you at least tell him about Zoey?
“No. I figured he would find out on Facebook.”
“Will your dad like the juicer? Allen asked. “Old people like healthy stuff, don’t they?”
“Yeah, I should think so. Yeah, whatever. I’ll make myself a Green Monster smoothie with it. I brought the stuff to make it.
“You brought yogurt, spinach, a banana, and, and, . . . peanut butter to make it?
“Yeah, it’s in the back with the juicer. Zoey and I will have the smoothie and you can eat whatever dad has. I hope dad is vaccinated. I won’t go in with Zoey if he isn’t.”
“You should have written him to find out,” Allen urged.
“When we get there put both of your masks on and go in and find out for me.”
At noon on the 24th of December, four vehicles pulled up to a Chicago brownstone. After driving up and down snow-related parking banned streets for a half-hour and calling each other and blaming Henrik for living in such an inaccessible place, the four vehicles were finally parked in spots that weren’t held by a lawn chair.
The group assembled on the sidewalk in front of Henrik’s house. They stood there catching up with each other. The children, tugging on their parents, moved the group toward the front door.
Nils knocked. A tall black teenager answered the door.
“Hi c’mon in.”
“Is my father here,” Nils asked.
“He’s . . . c’mon in everybody.”
Each one came in the door and stomped their boots on the floor mat.
“And who are you?” asked Samantha.
“My name is Marcus.”
“Is Henrik here? Have you been vaccinated?” Samantha prodded.
“Where’s my father,” Tilde asked pushing past Marcus.
“Your father told me you were coming today,” Marcus began. “So, I waited for you so I could . . ..”
“Could what?” asked Vivi.
“Your father . . . he passed away last night.”
“What?!” Nils stepped back in shock.
“Your father had some kind of stroke yesterday,” Marcus explained. “I called 911 and they came and took him to the hospital. The hospital called me last night and said that he passed at 2:31 AM. So, I waited to tell you.”
The group went silent except for the kids.
Leif went up to his father’s bedroom, stood for a minute looking into the room, and then came down. “Marcus, why are you here?”
“Well, you see, I’m what they call a “child-protection case”. My folks . . . they have issues with drugs and alcohol and all that. They get real violent sometimes.” Marcus showed them bruises on his arms and neck and then continued.
“I ran away to a homeless shelter. Your father was there serving meals. We ate soup together. He offered to take me in while my parents got help. My case manager said I could stay with him until things got sorted out in court.”
“You’ve been living here, then?” asked Allen.
“Yeah. Your father, you see, came and got me last Saturday. I think he over did it, though. He helped bring in boxes of my stuff from his car. I told him I could carry the things but he insisted. He was terrible sore for several days. He wanted to feel better before y’all came.”
The couples sat down in the front room. Each couple was trying to figure out their next move. There would be a funeral in a few days. Who stays at dad’s house? Who would go to a hotel? What would they wear to the funeral? Who will speak at the funeral service? At the burial? Flowers? Notifications? What about the brownstone and dad’s things? And mom? What about Marcus?
“I called my case manager,” Marcus told the group. “She’ll be here in an hour to pick me up. I’ll get my stuff outta here.” Then he added “Your father was regular to me . . . I tried to find a picture of him to take with me, but in all of these albums the only photo of him is this old one.” He handed Nils the album with the black and white photo.
Nils pulled the photo out of the sleeve and looked at the back of it. “On the back it says “Henrik 5 år”. He’s sitting in . . . it looks like an oversized chair. The picture is out of focus. It looks like no flash was used. You can barely make out his face. You mean there are no other photos of dad in there? There has to be some.”
“There’s lots of these family photos.” Marcus handed another album to Nils.
Nils thumbed through the photo albums. “I don’t see dad in any of these.”
“Your father must have taken the photos,” Marcus offered.
The case manager arrived. Marcus loaded up her car with his boxes and then said goodbye to the group.
©Jennifer Ann Johnson, Kingdom Venturers, 2021, All Rights Reserved
“It’s Lies Built on Top of Lies… All of These Tyrannical Measures are Nonsensical… We’re Not in a Pandemic Emergency Anymore” – Dr. Naomi Wolf Destroys the Fauci Elites on Steve Bannon’s War Room (thegatewaypundit.com)
They’re coming to take you away:
The FIX is in:
Let the healing begin:
Astroturfing and Propaganda – the manipulation of media messages