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from me to you

Chapter Text

 

It’s raining when she’s finally laid to rest.

Hop watches unflinchingly as the casket is lowered into the damp Earth, adorned with once sprightly flowers wilted beyond recognition. It’s suited to the moment, he thinks. His mother’s final days weren’t especially beautiful and he’d rather not fool himself into thinking they were.

A slow and painful death littered with complications and anxiety. Agonizing is an apt description. He wonders if any of the flowers Professor Magnolia was kind enough to arrange reflect that. He may look them up later, just to check, if he’s in any mood to feel as though he isn’t falling apart at the seams.

A final scripture is read. There are muffled sniffles all around. His mother was loved and well- respected within their hamlet. He wonders if she was aware of that. If she knew their tiny community would come together to bid her farewell. He hopes she did. Hopes she knew she had a place in their hearts. That’s all he can pray for.

Above, the tempest rages on. Thunder booms, lightning strikes, startling gasps from attendees. 

Still, Hop does not look away. He watches as the Earth swallows his mother whole, granting her a long-deserved rest and eternal peace. Something along those lines, at least. His mother wasn’t especially religious, but he recalls her murmuring verses of that nature when her own parents passed, days apart from one another. He recites those same words quietly, to the best of his ability.

 

betray not your anger

weep not with sorrow

let such be blessed by the land 

 

deep, deep, drawing no breath

deeper, deeper they dive

into suffocating depths they dive

 

betray not your anger

weep not with sorrow

let such be blessed by the land

 

He feels a hand on his shoulder.

It’s Sonia. She isn’t crying, but her eyes are red-rimmed, cheeks stained with tears long since shed.

“Where is that from?” She asks quietly. He doesn’t miss the way she angles her umbrella over him. There isn’t any point in it as he’s already completely soaked to the bone, but he appreciates the gesture regardless.

“I don’t know.” He responds, shoving his hands into his trouser pockets. “I thought she may like to hear it.”

“I think she did.” Sonia tries her best to smile. It’s weak and frayed at the edges, but it manages an equally as pathetic one from him. “Especially from you.”

“Maybe.” Hop would beg to differ, but that’s not an appropriate conversation to have anymore.

Sonia’s smile wilts. She looks as though she’s about to ask him to elaborate, when a slight commotion draws both their attention away. 

A familiar figure draws closer, dressed in a midnight black suit. The mourners create a path for him, offering condolences as he passes by, as if he isn’t late. As if he hasn’t arrived once the dust has settled and she’s meters below the Earth. 

As if he hasn’t missed the entire ceremony dedicated to commemorating their mother—

Hop’s throat constricts, his stomach coiling unpleasantly. Sonia’s hand tightens on his shoulder.

“Hop—“ She pleads. “Hop, please.”

He shakes her off.

“I’m leaving.” 

“Hop, don’t—“

“I’m sorry.” Is all he can bring himself to say, walking past the latecomer and through the crowd of surprised neighbors.

He vaguely hears his name being called, but he pays it no mind. He won’t stop, he can’t stop. He’s not about to solemnly stand around and pretend everything is okay. Pretend there are no hard feelings and everything is perfectly fine. He doesn’t want to lash out. Doesn’t want to make a mockery of his mother’s resting place.

Instead, he takes off at a sprint, tearing through the cemetery’s cobblestone path out into Wedgehurst’s peacefully empty streets. 

He runs and runs and runs, until his lungs burn and his sobs threaten to suffocate him. He stumbles past fields devoid of any Wooloo, feet skidding as he rounds the bend to his home. The ground is wet and muddy. He trips and falls, rising to his feet without a care, ignoring the scrapes and bruises on his hands and knees.

Hop bursts through the front door, slamming it shut behind him. He doesn’t stop to consider any of the empty rooms, absent of his mother’s customarily warm words, urging him into the kitchen for dinner or tutting at his injuries with a fondly exasperated look on her face.

There’s nothing. 

Hop is alone.

Ignoring the crippling silence, he stumbles up the stairs and into his room, collapsing onto the carpeted floor. He knows he’s making a mess of water everywhere, and that he should change into something dry before he catches a cold, but he doesn’t care. What does it matter? No one will be there to scold him for it.

No one will be there at all.

Hop cries. He cries, and cries and cries.

“You promised!” He wails. “You said you’d be okay!”

He cries until his his tears dry up and his chest is heaving from the exertion. Then he cries some more, because it hurts hurts hurts he’s alone his mum is gone and he’s all alone.

The tempest outside rages on.

Hop cries and cries, but his mother isn’t there to make things better anymore.