“What if you were given a chance to go back in time and change a pivotal choice you made,would you?”
Turning my head to the sound of the voice next to me, I smiled gently. I couldn’t see who was asking the question, because I had lost my vision many years ago, but I didn’t need to have sight in order to see.
“My my” I answered “That’s a rather deep question for one so young”
“Oh come on Grammy” my grandson responded “I am almost twelve and I would really like to know. What if you could go back in time, what would you change?
I took a moment to give his question some serious thought. This particular grand child was my thinker, and we often sat together and had long, theoretical discussions. I have never had the pleasure of knowing what he looked like, but I could see his energy, and it was beautiful.
“Well Steven, that question doesn’t have an easy answer. I have lived a long life and have made many choices along the way.”
“Oh I know Grammy, but.. What if you could go back in time and change the events that led to your accident, and you could have your sight back? Would you?” Feeling my breath hitch in my throat, I had to take a moment before I answered that question. Steven had a way of getting to the very center of your deepest emotions with his curiosity. But the one thing he didn’t understand was the impact that the truth to that question would have.
Steven and I have been playing “What If” since Steven was old enough to talk. At first it was just a silly game to get his imagination working and his creativity sparked. But as he started getting older, the “What if “questions were getting deeper and emotionally harder to answer. We had one rule, and that rule was all questions had to be answered honestly. Because we trusted each other so completely there was never an issue with answering any question, until now.
“Well Grammy?” Steven asked “”Would you?” Reaching out my hand, I took his hand and clasped it tightly. I didn’t often allow myself to go back to that time, it was done and over, and I was at peace with the consequences of my choices that led up to that day. But the question had been asked, so now I needed to go deep and find the answer.
My grandson sat silently, waiting. He knew not to interrupt my thought process, especially with a question this difficult. So back in time I went…
It’s amazing how the brain can remember sight even when the eyes are no longer the bodies window. And I could see the sequence of events as if it where yesterday. In my youth I was what could be considered attractive, so what I lacked in beauty I made for with personality, and I had that in spades. If there was a dance, or a party I was there, laughing, dancing and flirting with the boys. I was never without a date unless I chose to be, which wasn’t often because I really did enjoy the company of an attentive young man. And I never kept the same one around for more than a few dates, it was easier not to get attached that way. That plan worked for quite a few years, until the twins.. And that was the beginning of the secret that has never been told, and the choice that I made that changed everything.
Alex and Andrew where identical twins, tall, dark, very handsome with sky blue eyes and fast easy smiles. It was almost impossible to tell them apart physically, but their personalities, well that was another story. Andrew was quiet, sweet natured and very pleasant to be around. Alex, on the other hand was the bad boy, wild, sexy and would never take no for an answer. And for the first time in my life I had fallen in love… With both of them.
Life was so good then. I was always with one or the other of the twins, and on occasion, both. We shared everything, and we lived life out loud and to the fullest. The days were full of fun and adventure, but the nights.. Ah the nights. That was a whole nother story.
The nights were made for love. I grew up in a time where sex was almost like a form of excersise, and no one thought twice about doing it with total strangers and as often as possible. They even had clubs you could go too, and the twins and I actually went to one, once. It was.. different and I don’t regret going, but I preferred privacy and intimacy. And yes, I took both Alex and Anthony as lovers. They were both so different in they way they loved. Anthony made me feel cherished and desired above all others. I went to him when I needed comfort and warmth.
Alex on the other hand was the dark side side of sex. He did things to me that I never dreamed I would allow someone to do to me, and I did things I never dreamed I would do. He brought out a hunger in me I never knew I had. It was primal, it was nasty and it was hot, and I lived for it.
The problem with Alex was he found himself using alcohol and drugs much more than he should, and his edginess was bordering on violent, and it was starting to scare me. So after one particularly rough night, I decided I needed a break and I told Alex I was done and that I thought he needed help. He just laughed at me and walked away. He was past caring at this point, the drugs and alcohol had him in their grip and he was heading for the fall. Alex packed his bags that night and left town without a word to anyone. And that’s the last we saw of him for years.
Time went on and I settled into a comfortable life with Anthony. We married and we lived the American Dream with a lovely little house, white picket fence and two precious children, twins of course. We had it all, it wasn’t exciting, but it was safe, comfortable and ours. Until hell broke loose and Alex came back into town. Nothing would ever be the same after that day.
it is funny how some moments in time stay etched in your mind forever, to painful to ever forget. It started with a knock on the door. I opened it to find a wild eyed, drug crazed Alex. My heart clutched painfully as I looked into his eyes. Gone was the golden haired, fun loving bad boy. In his place was a burnt out, dirty junky with a life time of way to much excess written all over his lined face. I wouldn’t let him in because he was scaring me. Thankfully The children were in school and they didn’t have to see what
was to happen next.
With surprising strength Alex pushed his way into the house with a force that knocked me to the floor. Hitting my head I layed there dazed for a moment, but only for a moment, because the next thing I knew he had wrapped his fist in my hair, yanked me off the floor and on to the couch I tried to scream, but as soon as I opened my mouth I could feel the sting of the back of his hand as he slapped we with a force that snapped my head back. My eyes started to water and I begged him to stop. His laugh was ugly and mean as he ripped the top of my shirt and grabbed my Breasts cruelly and painfully. Gathering my strength I pushed him as hard as I could, knocking him off balance and onto the floor. Jumping up I scrambled off the couch and ran for the door. Unfortunately I wasn’t fast enough and I landing Hard as he grabbed my ankle. Jumping on top of me, he pulled my hands behind my back and yanked me up. Just then, Anthony came through the door. He had decided to come home from work so we could have lunch together.
I will never forget the look on his face when he saw what was happening before him. Shock, confusion, anger then rage. Letting out a bellow that resignated through the living room, Anthony went to grab for his twin, but Alex pulled a gun and pointed it at my head.
“Back away brother” he snarled. And with his arm tightly around my throat, he dragged me out the door and threw me into the front seat of his car. To scared to move, I waited in terror for him to get into the drivers side. Sliding behind the wheel, he started the car and hit the gas, tires screaching in protest. We flew down the road doing at least ninety miles an hour. I’ve never been so scared in my life. I had just been kidnapped by this twisted, sick, angry man, someone I no longer recognized, and I needed to find a way out.
Sitting in silence, I watched the miles whip by, taking me further and further from my life, from my love. I knew Anthony would follow and try to save me, but I had to try and save myself. Getting up the courage to speak, I spoke his name, but I was rewarding with the back of his hand across my face once again. Wiping the blood from my lip, I felt this rage over come me, overriding my fear, and perhaps my common sense. This monster wasn’t going to take over my life.
Looking out my window, I saw the road we were on and I knew the cliffs that where on my side. Knowing what I had to do, I whispered a quick prayer, reached over and grabbed the wheel as far towards me as I could, sending the car flying over the cliff. All I could hear was Alex’s scream, then shattering glass. Somehow I found myself flying free of the vehicle, then landing with a violent slam onto the rocky ground. A mighty explosion was all I heard as my word went dark, and stayed that way.
I awoke in the hospital a few days later to the sound of beeping machines, and whispered voices. Clearing my throat I croaked out “Water” and I could hear my husband calling out for the nurses. I opened my eyes, but all I could see the an inky blackness, and I felt terror.
” Anthony” I cried as I grasped for his hand in sheer panic. “I can’t see! Why can’t I see?” Feeling the strength of his hand as he held mine, I began to feel a sense of calm. “It’s ok baby” he crooned. “I’m here, and your are safe now”
i think the nurses shot me up with something to calm me, and I quickly went back to sleep. I stayed in the hospital for several months as my body took time to mend. I had several broken bones, and a fractured skull. Due to the impact when I landed, my vision was destroyed, but I was alive. And for that I was grateful. When I was strong enough emotionally Anthony filled me in on the details of what happened after the crash. The explosion of the car, the charred body of his twin brother, The subsequent investigation, and the final findings of the police report. Only Anthony and I knew the truth of what happened that day, and that truth went to the grave with Anthony many years later. And will go to the grave with me when it’s my time.
Coming back to the present, I squeezed my grandsons hand and spoke softly. “No Steven, I wouldn’t change the choice I made that day. It happened as it was meant, and I am at peace with it”
Feeling his finger gently wiping away a stray tear he quietly asked ” Then why the tears Grammy?” “Well Steven” I Replied “I’m just so blessed to be here, like this, with you, playing What if …”