When he was nineteen, taking my sister and me out was my older brother’s worst punishment. Primarily because he never got in trouble, and we sought it out the way Momma sought omens, relentlessly, and in places no one else could find them. We dragged him in and out of scrapes, and he was always the one to stand up straight, and tell our parents, with that breath of relief, exactly what had been going on. Momma would swoon and foretell our dire fates. Papa would laugh, clap Rhys on the shoulder and tell him he’d done his best, and Rhys would sigh and say he wished he could have done more. No one ever blamed him. I was so happy when he finally joined the navy as an officer. Annette and me could get into as much trouble as we wanted and not feel guilty about dragging him into it.
And we did, running around in wild places, making friends with all stripes and shades of humanity. Causing heartbreak, property damage, and the occasional riot. So when Rhys showed up five years later, neck deep in trouble and sinking fast, we dove in next to him. Learned the hard way that Rhys hadn’t been immune to trouble, he’d just saved it up to happen all at once. Twenty-four years worth.
We’re so proud of him.
It’s that time again. I stole this first line from Bek over at BuildingaDoor.