Editor: Areth Kyntaul
“Mom, I’m coming in.”
“Ah, Son, come on in.”
I pulled the door open and saw Elizabeth smiling broadly.
She shyly hung up a piece of cloth over her drawing, then giggled and said, “It’s so embarrassing… Mommy has been drawing for so long and yet Mommy hasn’t improved at all. Mommy learnt swordplay so fast, so why can’t Mommy draw well…? Mommy wants to draw you. Why is it so hard?”
I looked at her sketchpad curiously and said, “It’s alright, Mom. Let me have a look. I promise not to laugh at you since I think that drawing requires talent.”
Mom shook her head shyly and said, “Nah… Mommy feels that Mommy drew you really badly. Mommy is going to throw it away now… Wait, no. Mommy will burn it.”
“No, don’t! No matter ugly it is, it’s still me! It’s not good to burn it, don’t you think?! Does that count as cursing me? Does this count as cursing me?!” I didn’t know if I should laugh or cry and pressed my hand onto Mom’s.
Honestly, drawing has been a hobby of Mom’s for a long time. However, I’ve never seen her work. I’ve never even seen a work like a kid’s graffiti from her.
‘It looks like she really does burn her drawings… Does she do that to prevent her artwork from being circulated?’
Mom looked at me. She extended her hand out to pull the cloth off her sketchpad. She looked at me and said, “Really? Don’t laugh at me, Son. I don’t draw well…”
“I won’t… Ah…”
I looked at the drawing.
‘I’m a good talker, alright? Not even the stupidest person would say something like ‘Ugh, how ugly’ in this situation. You would give your best compliment, right? But I couldn’t come up with any compliment for Mom’s drawing… No, it wasn’t that it didn’t have anything that stood out. It was basically like a kid’s crayon drawing… Mm, that sort of retarded looking drawing.’
‘Am I that ugly?! Burn it! Hurry up and burn this drawing! This drawing can’t be circulated around. Nobody will compliment anything on this drawing. This is basically Her Majesty’s embarrassing history. No wonder why she wanted to burn it! Burn it! Burn it! Completely burn it!’
“See, Mommy draws really badly, right….? It’s alright, Mommy doesn’t mind, either. This is just something Mommy does to kill time.” Mom smiled bitterly and then took the piece of paper back. She scrunched it up and tossed it into the fire.
She then stood up, sat on the bed to the side and patted the spot next to her. She said, “Whatever the case, come sit down first, Son. Mommy has a good guess of what it is you want to say.”
I walked over and sat down next to Mom.
She reached out in a reserved fashion and placed her hand on my shoulder. She then said, “You want to talk about your wedding, right? Mommy has prepared it for you. Mommy saw how you have been busy and outside every day, so Mommy took it into Mommy’s own hands. Don’t be angry, Son.”
“No, Mom, I’m not angry. I’m actually very grateful to you. If it wasn’t for you, I would’ve forgotten about it. That would be unfair to both Lucia and Nier.” I chuckled, then hugged Mom gently and thanked her, “Thank you, Mom. Thank you for helping me organise my wedding.”
I noticed that Mom’s body was shaking from nervousness…
Elizabeth is different from Vyvyan. Elizabeth always gets particularly happy whenever I hug her, while I feel that Vyvyan gets sexually aroused…
Elizabeth hugged me with joy and then said, “You don’t have to thank me, Son. You’re Mommy’s son. Mommy is very sorry for not protecting you when you were young and sorry for not being by your side. Mommy can only help you now. Mommy wants to help you organise your wedding. Mommy wants to see you go towards happiness. You’re Mommy’s child, after all. Mommy wants to see you happy over the things Mommy does for you, just like that woman.”
“Uhm… I’m very happy, Mom. Honest. I’m happy whether we’re talking about having you by my side or marrying Nier. But are you in a hurry, Mom? About my child…”
“Uhm, Mommy is rushing that.” Elizabeth nodded and then rubbed my lower abdomen…
‘Thank god for you always keeping control of your hand…’
She said, “Mommy isn’t an elf. When Mommy lived with the elves, Mommy came to realise the short lifespan of humans, compared to elves. Mommy doesn’t know when Mommy will leave this world, so Mommy wants to see you and your family before Mommy has to leave. Son, Mommy doesn’t have any other wish. Mommy just hopes that you can be happy. As long as you’re happy, Mommy can leave with a smile. Mommy isn’t doing this to compete with Vyvyan over something… Of course, Mommy has considered that, too, but Mommy still hopes that you can be happy. Honest.”
‘You just emphasised that part didn’t you?! You just emphasised that last part, didn’t you?! You just revealed your thoughts, didn’t you?! You did it to compete with Vyvyan, didn’t you?!!’
But I still believe that Mom sincerely wishes for me to be happy.
Mom hugged me and then gently stroked my head. She softly said, “Mom’s biggest regret is not getting to see you grow up. Mommy wanted to see you grow up from the time you were a kid into the gentle and determined man you are now. I imagine that being able to watch over you as you go through that process would be incomparably blissful.”
I looked at Elizabeth and noticed her yearning gaze.
She looked into the distance and softly murmured, “You’re the most precious treasure my husband left behind for me, as well as the only memory he left for me. When Mommy sees the side of your face, Mommy can virtually see him still by Mommy’s side. Mommy has no family left. You’re the only one.”
“Mommy really wants to see you slowly grow up, but it’s impossible now. Mommy didn’t provide you with any warmth in your childhood. Mommy didn’t even hold you. That’s why Mommy wants to give you the most blissful wedding.”
Mom looked at me seriously. She then lowered her head and kissed me on my forehead. She softly said, “Son, your happiness is Mommy’s only wish. Mommy couldn’t give you happiness in the past. Mommy hopes that you can stay by Mommy’s side from now on. Mommy will do Mommy’s best to ensure you’re happy…”
I looked at Mom’s gaze; her powerless and worried gaze. The gaze she looked at me with was so sad.
‘She must be really sorry. She must be really apologetic for not having been by my side during my childhood. Mom just wanted a perfect home, but she had to leave her child behind. That must be Mom’s biggest regret.’
‘Mom wants for me to be happy. She wanted to give me happiness in the future. However, half of her own happiness was missing.’
“Mom.” I clenched my teeth then stood up and opened my arms.
Mom froze up as she looked at me not knowing what to do.
“Carry me like when I was a kid.”
‘That’s a princess carry then, isn’t it? Though I’m very close to Mom, this most intimate form of interaction is something we’ve never had.’
Mom looked at me with her eyes full of surprise. Even her hands were shaking. She shook as she asked, “C-Can… Can I really? C-Can Mommy do that…?”
“Uhm. You said you never held me in the past. It’s never too late. Come, Mom.”
Mom nodded firmly and then stood up. She wrapped her arm around my legs and then picked me right up…
When I wrapped my arms around Mom’s neck, she cried out with pleasant surprise and then she fell down like a stick falling over…
And so… I didn’t return that night… I had to stay behind and take care of Elizabeth who passed out from excitement…