"Not much. I doubt anything that was really different for you."
I wore a knowing smile. "If you knew." I said my shaking my head.
My mother came back into the living room with two mugs of coffee and offered them to me Twilight. I turned it down and lowered Twilight's out reaching hand.
"I don't think you'd want to try coffee." I said warmly.
She looked at it and the strong scent washed over us. "It doesn't smell that bad, but if you say so."
My mother set the cups down and sat in a chair near the couch. She smiled contently at me and Kian.
"I still can't believe you're home with us. It's been so long, I wish you came sooner."
The pit in my stomach reformed and I looked down quietly at the floor. Twilight wrapped her hand back around mine. I wiped the forming wetness from my eyes and smiled at her.
My mother saw that she seemed to strike a nerve and left the subject. "So how have you been doing."
I held the smile and looked to her. "I've been just fine."
"That's lovely dear." My mother smiled. "Kian, why don't you try to get to know your brother?"
"Just give me a minute mom. This is, just a little hard to get down."
I patted his back.
Twilight leaned in close. "Why did she call you Donny?" she whispered.
"Nickname." I whispered back.
"So just how are you and Twilight friends?" My mother asked.
I looked over to Twilight brightly and shared a smile. "We're a little more than friends."
My mother simply held a warm and knowing expression.
I looked back to Kian, who was leaning back in his spot on the couch rubbing his temples.
"I have an older brother. Jeez, he's even got a girlfriend that's pretty hot." He said quietly.
I still managed to hear it and spoke just as quietly, close to him. "Eeyup."
His eyes widened at that and slowly looked over his shoulder nervously. I held a smile and looked down at him. He smiled sheepishly and tried to look off. "So you heard that."
I nodded and moved back to my spot beside Twilight.
"So how have things been for you?" I asked my mother.
"Okay, Kian's doing fine in school and I've been making plenty to keep us comfortable."
"That's nice." I said cheerfully. "What do you do?"
"I work as an accountant."
Kian got up from the couch "I'm going to just hang out in my room." He said walking down the hall.
"James, why don't you go 'hang out' with your brother. I'd like to talk to Twilight for a little while if that's alright."
"Uh, sure." I said giving her a quick hug and following Kian into his room.
I walked through the door way to see him lying in his bed with his hands over his face.
I sat down on the bed beside him. "Wassup?"
"Nothing. I just...don't know where to start." He uncovered his face. "Would it be okay to ask you a few questions?"
"Sure, go ahead."
"Just what's our dad like? I've asked mom before, but she just ignored my question."
"Our dad, well...He's kind of an asshole."
"How so?" Kian asked sitting up.
"He took me when our parents split and raised me to be tough and 'act like a man'. You want to know what he did to teach me to be tough?" I asked.
"He had me gut a live deer in front of him. A live deer. Yeah, our dad was a bit of a cynical fuck."
"Jeez." Kian said with a disgusted look.
"The man bragged about killing a Grizzly bear with his own hands."
Kian laid back down and stared at the ceiling. "Well damn, that killed my next question."
"And what would that have been?"
"Would you have wished you got to stay with mom?"
I looked at him, zoning out at the thought. After a minute I shook my head. "No."
"Because Kian," I said getting up and moving to lean against the wall. "I'd probably never have met Twilight."
A faint smile spread across his face. "You really like her that much, huh?"
I nodded. "Yeah, yeah I do."
"Well you're lucky." He said lying back down. "I can't even talk to a girl."
I held my smile and raised a brow.
"I don't really think there's much hope for me. I panic when I say anything and just space out or slink away. I sound pretty pathetic right now don't I?" He asked looking up to me.
"Give it time, you never know just when and how you might meet someone."
"Easy for you to say, you're already set." He groaned.
"Just what would you say if I told you I've known her for the last few days?"
"I'd ask if you were takin' the piss?"
"Well, I guess some chance happened and you struck out."
I looked down to him. "Just what do you do anyway? For fun and stuff."
"Nothing really." He answered. "I just go through class and do some after school work at the humane society. Other than that, nothing."
"Maybe you could find a girl like you, animals and junk."
"You think so?"
"You can only try."