What Grandpa told me that day changed my life forever.
About this creation
Grandpa will remain a fond memory in my mind. When I was four, he bought me my first Orenco toy laser rifle. I played with it for four days straight. Grandpa was always telling me stories of his days on the job as a police officer. Stories about how he was entering buildings, and heroically carrying hostages out, or how he would call in robberies and then charge in, guns blazing. He was my hero. He was a real World War Two buff; he even owned an old, outdated M1911 that he kept on the top shelf in his closet. He told me that the day I could reach it was the day I could shoot it. Even when I reached adulthood, he took me camping and fishing up in the reserve park with dad. He was always outside, healthy and happy.
That's why I was so surprised when Aunt Margaret called me and told me that he had had a stroke. They didn't expect him to live much longer. I rushed over in my hover-scooter, shoving my way through the living room past Uncle John and my cousin Sally. I opened the door slowly to find Grandpa waiting for me, it seemed. I came close to hear him mumble to me.
"The gun. You can touch it now. But look harder. It's there..." His voice trailed off.
I ran into his closet and stared at the top shelf for a few seconds before reaching up into it. The cold steel of the 1911 startled me, but I kept rummaging. My hands connected with something small. A key. I ran back to the bed and listened as Grandpa murmured again.
"The bookcase, pull them out..."
I walked to his small bookcase and removed Combat Dad, After Iraq: The Next Move, and One Second After from the small bookshelf's comfortable shelter. I was faced with a false back, turning the key slowly. The compartment swung open, revealing a dirty, corroded gun. Why would he have this? I didn't have time to think. Grandpa raised his hand slowly and called me quietly. I came close enough to hear his tiny, failing voice.
"Jonathan, I love you." he whispered. He turned onto his back and let out a long breath. "Forgive me, God. Forgive me." He breathed once, twice, again, and then no more.