Grit – Family Matter 2

He’d been kidding himself if he thought this was going to go smoothly — there were no buried hatchets; or at least not permanently buried ones. Sometimes when people went through a person’s effects they would find something that troubled them and they might see that it was fitting for them to resurrect old ghosts; old vendettas. Guilt made you imagine debts that needed to be paid to the deceased were now owed to you as you had inherited everything else that was theirs.

As soon as Grit laid eyes on Terry he knew that he had been nosing around and that he had found something he shouldn’t have; something he didn’t like. He stared daggers across the church at Grit. He did that most childish of things: gestured with his finger across his throat in a slashing motion. Grit got the message.

When they prayed he closed his eyes. It was out of respect and not out of belief and was one of the few times that Grit would ever close his eyes in a room full of people. The service was short: two hymns and a speech from Terry and that was pretty much it. Grit would not go to the cemetary after all — all it would do was cause trouble and he wasn’t here for that.

‘So, what exactly did your sorry arse turn up here for, eh, you cunt?’

‘Just come to pay my respects, Terry. John was my brother.’

‘And? Didn’t mean much to you while he was dying in that fucking hospital, did it?’

‘I was busy Couldn’t get there.’

‘I know why you couldn’t get there. I know what you did to my father. I know what you owed him and I know what you owe us.’

‘You don’t know anything, son. Don’t go making any stupid mistakes — you don’t know enough about me or about what happened to go getting yourself in trouble over either one.’

‘Don’t call me son. Damn, you come here and you threaten me at my own father’s funeral? You’re a dead man; that’s the only way we can settle this.’

‘Didn’t threaten you. Don’t want any trouble with you — I have no grudge with you. Don’t you think if your father wanted me dead he would have sorted it out a long while back?’

‘I have a burial to go to. Don’t come. I’ll be seeing you soon, uncle.’

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