#2 Madrigal

| November 2, 2011 | 0 Comments

Madrigal liked to sing.  No surprise, really, since he was named after a song.  Not that he ever told anyone what his name was, much to his mom’s consternation.  But hey, it was bad enough being the son of the music teacher, let alone having to carry a name like that.  So he would tell everyone his name was Rick, his argument being that the sound was in there somewhere.

He didn’t tell many people about the singing, either, and he wasn’t really sure why, except that it was a secret special thing.  His grandma used to say it was good to have a few special secret things in your life.  And anyway, he didn’t like to sing in front of people.  He liked to sing in the woods, alone, with no one to answer to about the moments when the song went kind of… sideways.

It wasn’t like he got teased a lot in school, which he would have thought would happen, what with being one of the charity cases, or rather, a faculty member’s child.  Nobody really gave him a hard time in the small private school he went to.  It wasn’t like he was totally noticeable, either.  Brown hair, average height, average build, average personality.  Or maybe a little above average, since he did seem to get along well with just about anyone.

Madrigal had a knack for putting people at their ease.  He’d like to think that it was because he was well trained in the art of human interaction by the generations of performers that ran in his family, but a much more cynical voice was just as quick to point out that coming from a long line of gypsy con-artist grifters probably did more to influence his gift of gab than any man prancing on a stage did.

That cynical voice always sounded exactly like his uncle, and no surprise there, since his uncle was just about the only person on that side of the family he had any dealings with after his dad was shipped off to… wherever it was.  Madrigal’s guess was that his dad was in jail, but he couldn’t say for certain.  No one would say.  It was just “Shipped off,” or on a rare occasion when his mother had too much to drink, it was “Taken.”

He thought maybe it was important, the way his mom talked about his dad.  She never put him down, like some of his friends told him their divorced parents did.  And she never seemed in the least bit interested in carrying on with another man, not even after Madrigal’s uncle– the man’s own brother– let it be known that no one would hold it against her if she were to move on.  She assured him that she knew he wouldn’t ever return.  But, she would say, if she couldn’t have him she wasn’t interested in having anyone.

Madrigal swore to himself that his mother was the only person he would ever sing to until dad came home.  He’d made a lot of similar deals with himself, or god, or whoever might listen.  He knew damn well (goodness knows, enough people had told him) that his dad wasn’t coming back.  His uncle had even given him the odds on his father’s return and they were dismal enough to be unmentionable.  But he wasn’t going to let go.

Even if he was the only soul left in the universe that could remember his name, he was going to wait for his dad.  And even if it was the stupidest thing to do, he was never going to stop thinking that the man was going to walk through that door any day now.  That was who he really sang to when he was wandering through the woods.  In his secret heart of hearts, he was singing to his dad, calling him home, leading him back into their open arms.


Category: 2011, Drama

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