What had at first burned and roared with the intensity of many tongues of flame was now only a quiet, green glow, spotting his eyes like the aftereffect of camera flashes. As he waited for his vision to clear and his eyes to adjust, what he found waiting for him was a memory.
He had seen his father cry only twice. Once in the hospital. The second time, at the funeral. In the year since that funeral, Justin thought he had seen his father come close to tears a few times, but never anything like the morning after Thanksgiving, while decorating for Christmas.
The Holmeses didn’t own many Christmas decorations, which made the ones that they did have all the more meaningful. When Justin had expressed his desire to skip Christmas, Benjamin Holmes had adamantly refused, sticking to the same mantra that had gotten them through the past year: “We can be sad that your mother is gone. What we can’t do is let it derail our lives.”
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