The record was broken. That was not a cliché or a euphemism, it really was completely and utterly broken. Snapped in two due to a bit too much rough and a lot of tumble. And it was all Johnny’s fault anyway. Our dad had told us not to touch the old LPs stacked neatly at the bottom of Mum’s bookshelf, but he just had to try it. Just had to see if he could work out the record player – the HiFi as Dad called it. He almost had it too, only he couldn’t find the play button, and when I went to help him… Well let’s just say Johnny has never been too keen on people telling (showing) him how to do things. He likes to work it out himself, and I guess I sort of forgot that.
But he was taking forever.
So I tried to help and look where it got us. Where it got me. I’m the oldest, after all. I’m in charge. But I didn’t want to listen to The Rolling Stones (who?) in the first place and God knows why Johnny did. Probably because he knew he shouldn’t. Dad was going to be really pissed.
But it was really nothing to do with me. And Johnny gets bored quickly. And we’re too young to be left alone in the house, we’re bound to get up to mischief, get in trouble, at least make a mess.
So why did they leave us?
They just went. One bag between the two of them. Mum and Dad, gone out the door, Mum turning back to tell us (me) that dinner was in the oven and not to forget to eat it. That was it though. No ‘See you later,’ no ‘We’ll be back at such and such time’. Just silence and a closing door.
It made me uneasy.
And now it’s really late. Way past bedtime. I wonder if we should go up or wait up. It’s tough being in charge.
I wish Dad was here. I wish he was yelling at me. It would be better than the sound of Johnny’s tears. And mine.