Gone for Good


Her mother has just left home for good.

She's lying on her bed upstairs, trying to keep herself from feeling sad, because she doesn't want to feel sad about it. She remembers the years of fights and tries to tell herself that it's good that she's gone, that the old man is better off without her and she just would've ended up hurting him worse. She'd even threatened to take all of his inventions - no, their inventions - and throw them away so that they'd stop wasting their time on rubbish.

The old lady had never approved of his… “hobby,” as she'd called it, always putting quotes around the word so that it would seem less serious. She wonders how old they'd been when they'd gotten married, or why they'd gotten married when it was so obvious - even to her - that they hadn't ever really gotten along. She'd always get mad and start storming around the house, and then he'd go over to the lab for days, even sleeping there when he just didn't want to see her again.

They'd used her as a go-between almost since she'd been old enough to talk, and that had worked for a while. But then she'd grown up enough to start paying attention to exactly what was happening, and to start taking an interest in her old man's inventions, and things had started to go downhill. She'd been stupid and young enough to think that if she could just explain things to her mother, everything would be better. What a disaster that had been!

And now she's gone for good. Says she's tired of being the laughingstock of Linga, playing second fiddle to piles of junk.

Good riddance, the girl thinks, squeezing her eyes shut to hold back tears.