Digging through my grandfather’s things wasn’t the easiest thing I had to do that week. With every empty box, came the task of bringing back memories. My mom told me that anything I wanted, I could take.
It was just her and I there that day.Going room by room. Packing anything that would fit in our boxes. Every once in a while, I would look out a window. Rain splattered off of the panes of glass that needed a good cleaning. Streaks of muddy water ran down with every new droplet. Why is it that it always rains on the saddest of days?
I walked into my grandfather’s office to start dissecting it. I walked over to his bookshelf. On the top stood his science, math, and zoology books. They were well worn. He was always reading and highlighting in something. On the bottom of the shelf were my books. Well, my brother and my books. They ranged from learning to count, to the alphabet, to coloring. He put them on the bottom shelf so we could always reach them and pretend we were studying too.
I started grabbing books starting from the left to the right. He had them all meticulously organized in alphabetical order.
I glazed over each book before putting it in the box. I reached the middle of the second shelf when the book I grabbed was lighter than it looked like it should be. I opened the cover and started paging through when I discovered why; the center of the book was hollowed out.
“Mom. You should come here.” I shouted in her general direction.
“Give me a minute.” I heard from somewhere close by. I had lost track of which room she was in at any given moment.
Not wanting to waist any more time, I got up and wondered around until I found her, all the while staring at the empty space in the book. There were some scuffs on the bottom of the opening, like something rough had been kept inside.
“Check it out.” I mumbled as I tilted the opening towards her. “I think grandpa was hiding something.”
“Huh. Look at that.” She replied getting up and dusting her hands off on her jeans.
She lightly flicked at the pages.
“Did you know about this?” I asked.
“I didn’t.” But from the beginning she didn’t seem all that surprised by this book.
“What do you think was in it?” I wondered. I leaned against the door jam hoping to find out what my mom seemed to know something about.
“Probably a flask or something.” she joked and went back to her box. “It’s probably nothing hun. Why don’t you pack it up and keep working. We still have the kitchen to get to. I am hoping to at least start that today.” Completely disinterested, she went back to work, humming a song that seemed vaguely familiar.
I turned and left the room, but put the book in my backpack. My gut was telling me there was more to this book than a secret addiction. My grandfather wasn’t the type to keep secrets, or so I thought. I wanted to know what he needed to keep hidden.