I saw the bag of dried meat several feet above me and I continued to jump for it unsuccessfully. I could only condemn my own weakness. I needed that meat to strengthen my muscles, but I could not reach it because I was not strong enough. It was a profound conundrum.
My mother pushed me from the pantry with a scowl and said something which I did not understand.
Although they had taught me some simple words of certain items, I would never say the two words it seemed they wanted me to say the most. I would never apologize to them.
I was now six months old, I had grown several inches, and I was no longer fat. My parents made sure to feed me well, but I didn mind scavenging food for myself when I became hungry. They often fretted about the fact that I was not plump as most of the other children around us were. I simply did not understand this. Did they want a weak son?
My parents eventually stopped trying to make me say mom and dad and instead made me try to say Max and Helen. I repeated the words back to them and they were very happy. I thought it would be useful to be able to call my parents by their names, but I did not particularly care too much.
Helen loved to make me draw on pieces of inscribing material very similar to papyrus. They called the material paper. I certainly had no experience with this sort of thing, but I found it amusing to draw little scribbles of men covered in blood. Obviously the drawings could hardly be recognized as that, but I loved pulling up images of dead men in my mind.
If my mother could figure out what my scribbles were, she certainly would be horrified.
On the commemoration of the day that I had been born, my parents had a little celebration. They called the celebration a birthday. I was happy because they made a small little meat cake for me and had red streamers all around the house. They knew me all too well, I love meat and I love the color red. At that moment, I was satisfied and subconsciously thought that my parents were grand.
I thought that until the doorbell rang. My relatives were intruding upon my privacy. They always made me angry because they pinched me in the cheeks or rubbed my hair condescendingly.
When Max let them in the doors I had quickly mustered my senses and prepared myself for mental and perhaps physical warfare if things started becoming unbearable. Though I was small, I knew the ways in which to harm a being much larger than myself. Especially for a fellow man.
”Oh he is so cute! Come here Leon, hug your aunt! ”
I had, with malicious intent, gathered meat cake in my palms and proceeded to smear it over her shirt as I hugged her. I was a master at deception and I looked perfectly innocent. Though it was certainly wasteful, it is always vital to use the weapons at your disposal in times of need.
My aunt was aghast and she pulled away from me. Her face turned beet red and she stared at me with a glare that meant death.
Max and Helen were extremely angered as well and they grabbed me and brought me back to my crib prison.
It was supposed to be the day where I was celebrated, but instead I was put in time out for simply implementing my harmless plan. This event had made me bitter. I would never forget the disgrace my parents had made me suffer.
However, there was a silver lining to the fact that I was left alone, for it meant that I could work out.
As I was going through my rigorous routine, a face peered over at me.
”Helen, Max, come here fast! He is doing push-ups in his crib! ”
”Oh-hum he often does that. ”
”Really, that is so funny. Why have you never told me this? ”
”I thought I had. Well now you know. ”
It was a sore spot for Max who had responded to David, his brother. Davids wife, Sarah walked over to the crib and looked over at Leon to talk to him.
”Come on Leon, you can do it. Show us another pushup! ”
”No wanna! ”
I shook my head vigorously and replied with my limited English vocabulary. Though she looked disappointed, she turned back to the group of adults behind her and talked to them.
”He really is cute. You guys have a funny kid. ”
Helen chuckled nervously as though her nerves had been frayed and responded.
”Yeah he really is funny isn he. ”
Helen and Sarah conversed further about how Sarah had become pregnant. I really did not understand what that meant though, so I disregarded their conversation and instead listened to my father and uncle talk.
”Have yall guys been shooting lately? ”
”Me and Helen have not been shooting since we had Leon. Between work and taking care of him it has been pretty rough. ”
”That is truly horrifying. You know just me and you could go out now. ”
”I suppose, It really has been a long time. ”
”Hey Honey, Helen, Max here has something to ask you guys. ”
They both turned their heads abruptly, extremely annoyed that they had been interrupted.
”What is it! ”
Said Sarah. Max replied, looking at Helen nervously.
”Well you see… ”
”Spit it out man! ”
He sighed and said.
”Well, me and David were wondering if we could go to the shooting range. ”
The womens eyes narrowed to slits as they stared at their respective spouses.
”Without us! ”
They both simultaneously yelled.
”Well we would have to take Leon with us if we all went. ”
Sarah remained silent this time and stared at Helen, it all depended on what she said.
”Awh hell, hes one and breathing some gunpowder in will probably put some hair on his chest! ”
The men were extremely happy and ran off like madmen to grab their firearms before their wives could change their minds.
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