Dinner was cold.
It was strange, seeing such a beautiful meal served on such a beautiful table set, on such a beautiful table, to such a beautiful family, in such a beautiful home, served cold.
But, it was fitting as the people about to eat, were just as beautiful and cold as the ham and potatoes on the table.
I wish I was any different from them- but, I’m not. I am the middle child of the said cold family. sitting around the dark, distressed mahogany table. Marjorie Burningham, me, alone on one side of the table. At the head of the table, there was an empty seat. Father, Dr. Maxwell "Captain" Burningham, who was still out at work, would usually be in that chair. Mother, Isabelle Burningham-Ross sat apposite from Father’s chair, always shifting her gaze from the empty chair and the floor. David Burningham, my baby brother, sat across from me, with an empty seat to his left. Harrison Burningham, my adult brother, was meant to sit in the empty seat but, he doesn’t come around anymore.
He died, 6 months ago.
David, Mother, and I sat around the dinner table in silence. I’d gotten used to too- The harsh silence. After living in a place where everything feels more like a mausoleum than a home, for 17 years, there isn’t much else a kid can do than adapt. When I was younger, the only thing that I’d ever
Mother wanted to wait for Father before we ate, "Don’t bother bringing dinner out yet, Gracie. We’re waiting for Dr. Burningham to join us tonight..." she’d told our house keeper.
"Yes, Ma’am" Gracie responded.
"Oh, and Gracie?"
"Would you call Marjorie and David down from, where ever they seem to be? Send them to the dining room."
I could hear Mother from the sitting room close by the kitchen where she was directing Gracie.
I’ve always wondered if she ever got tired of saying, "Yes, Mrs."?
I would. But, she must not, Gracie’s been saying, "Yes Mrs." professionaly for years now