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Time has no mercy. It doesn't care what you're going through...it keeps marching on at it's own pace. No matter how badly you want to freeze a moment and live it forever, time won't bother to listen...before you know it, that moment is gone, like a blink of your eye. On the other end of the spectrum...when you just wish time would fly and heal your heart, it just seems to drag on without hearing your plea. Time is cruel.

Ever since that night, praying with Baylee, I've continued to pray nightly. Maybe you'd call it begging, but either way, I've kept at it. It's been a while now...nearly six months...since the accident. Leighanne has gotten no better and the family is meeting today, to discuss what they are going to do. I can't imagine the burden they carry...being responsible for deciding one's fate? To top it off, it's the fate of a loved one that they have to decide upon. I'm not sure that choosing the fate of a stranger would be any easier...maybe just different...but I don't really care to find out.

So here I sit, swinging next to my shortest friend. The look on his face tears me apart...not that this day is any different than that of the last six months. No one had told Baylee what the meeting was about...no need to upset him before a decision was officially made...but yet he seemed to know exactly what was happening and it was written all over his face.

We barely swung as we sat in silence. I had no clue what to say or where to begin. I was honestly afraid of blurting out the wrong thing before my brain was able to stop my mouth. Let's face it...I've always been known for saying the wrong things at the wrong times. It's not something I'm proud of...but that's me and I can't seem to control it, no matter how hard I try.

“Nick?” Oh that soft voice...that young, innocent soft voice...it sounded to timid...so vulnerable. His fingers fiddle with the swing's chain, as if he couldn't bring himself to look up at me. That's probably a good thing, because out of everyone I know, it seems like Baylee can read me the best. One look in my eyes and he probably would have known, for sure, what was happening.

“Yeah, Bay?” Cracking, my voice gave it away that I felt like crying. But then again...how could I not feel like that? My breaths were shaky, despite trying my hardest to keep them even. About ready to burst from my chest, my heart pounded harder than ever. Rubbing my now sweaty hands, on my jeans, I waited for him to go on, although I wasn't sure I really wanted him to.

“My mommy is...gonna go...to...heaven...and be with daddy...today...isn't she?” Oh snap. There it was. He could have asked anything in the world, but no...he asked the one question I was praying he wouldn't. I guess I can't be surprised though. It's not like I could seriously expect him to ask if I'd take him to play ball...that would be ridiculously wishful thinking.

“Honestly...I don't know...but maybe.” Now my shoulders slumped, as if verbally admitting it was making my brain wrap around the idea that it may actually become reality. Shows you what good all that damn praying did! Why even bother, when it does no good? This is exactly why I stopped praying, to begin with. I never asked for a lot...just things like making my parents stop fighting...keeping our family together...making my heart hurt less...but guess what? Not a single one ever came true. To me, praying seemed like throwing a penny into a wishing well...it gets your hopes up but just lets you down in the end.

“I feel like my mom left me. You'd tell me if she died...right?” Would I tell him? Of course I would! I told him when his dad passed...didn't I?! My mind screamed, at him, but I knew that I couldn't expect him to think rationally right now. So, I slipped off the swing and knelt before him, taking his hands in mine.

“Yes, Baylee. If I knew your mom passed...I would tell you right away.” The moment he looked up, our eyes met. I miss the twinkle that used to be there, lately it's been replaced with dark clouds like those you see before a thunder storm.

I don’t know what it was, but something within me…deep, deep within me…told me that Baylee’s feeling was right and she was gone. Mind you, I wanted to fight that feeling. I wanted to do anything possible, to make that feeling go away…as if making the feeling go away would mean that Leighanne was still with us. But the truth of the matter was that I had no control over the feeling…or if the feeling represented truth.

What seemed like an eternity passed before I saw a few family members walking our way. One of those people was Leighanne’s mom. One look at her face…and I knew. I knew that the feeling wasn’t just that…it was an intuition of what was real. Baylee knew it, too. Sure enough, Leighanne went to be with her beloved Brian that day and, naturally, Baylee fell into pieces. Just when I had thought the pain couldn’t get any worse, my heart was torn from my chest, once again. The tears began to flow. They were flowing faster and harder than I expected. Oddly enough…they were my tears…not Baylee’s.

To tell you the truth, I think that poor child had completely run out of tears. He sat in that swing, staring at the ground, silently. There were no tears from his eyes. No whimpers from his lips. No groans from his throat. Just silence. It was a deafening silence though…one that just cuts you, right down to the core.

At that moment, I was sure that it wasn’t…wouldn’t… couldn’t…possibly get any worse. What else could Baylee be put through? That just goes to show what I know. Because I really had no idea what was in store for him…for us. And there was nothing that could prepare me for it, either. Life was about to get a lot more…shall we call it…interesting? A lot harder, too.