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878
Farewell to Father

The dark night stretches its shadows against the modestly challenging full-moonlit light.

I find myself in the snowy forest standing next to my step-father. We are in the middle of nowhere with a cabin upon the hill behind me, a golden glow of the fire inside pulsating at the windows. I can hear our family's in the cabin talking, I'm positive Mom and his Sister Cherri is up there in the voices as well. He is so healthy, happy looking and wearing his favorite winter gear and beanie. He turns from me and we begin to walk casually through the forest making conversation as we always had.

As we walk and talk, I have a sense that there are underlying questions that I am wishing for him to answer, although I do not directly ask the questions, I cannot ask them, yet they rattle me deep down -- "Did I make you proud? Am I the man you would have wanted me to be?"

As we walk and talk the conversation is good, I have a very comforting sense from him that all is well. Eventually we stop in a small clearing of the forest, the moon remains bright in the sky and the cabin not so far away on the hill behind me.

The family hears us chatting from the cabin and I can hear them wondering "Who is Aaron talking to out there?" they say "It sounds like Steve!" I can hear the voices coming from the cabin and I turn to look up the hill but see no one, yet the voices crawl closer. I turn back and see Steve walking away peacefully into the moonlit forest. Our conversation is over and I won't be seeing him again.

The big question I have for him goes unanswered and I need to find a way to fulfill it -- A way to make him proud. After his blood-born Son's death, I feel as though there is nobody to carry the fire in Steve's name.

It HAS to be me.

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