I stepped up the creaky, wooden stairs to the attic. Slowly, painfully. Full of regrets, yet no regrets.
My mind flooded with memories. Memories of childhood, memories of youth. But the most painful of all those memories, was the Masterpiece.
The Masterpiece that my father had painted. Just. Before. He died.
I remembered his words that stormy night, “Mind the Masterpiece, Getta!”
I winced at the remembrance of his nickname for me, Getta. Even though mother had always insisted on calling me by my real name, father had always been the more playful, fun one, calling me Getta instead of plain, old Margaret.
Father had driven off, leaving the Masterpiece in my loving and gentle, but childish, care.
I had watched out the window, thinking that I would see my father again. But I soon found out that I would never. See him. Again.
As I reached the top of the stairs that musty attic smell that is always there (no matter how many times you clean it) came at me.
My gaze fell upon the very thing that I had gone up for.
My fingers touched the painting. A beautiful painting of a Man. He was a kind looking Man, dressed all in white, holding an innocent little lamb.
Father had told me about that Man, who had left His whole flock of sheep to go and look for one little lamb who had wandered too far off.
Kind of like father. I thought.
My dad had wandered ‘too far’ off the road during the storm. The car accident had scarred me for life.
I looked up again at the Masterpiece, the sunset painted behind the Man catching my gaze. The Periwinkle sky around the fiery red setting sun seemed to sparkle.
I gently took the Masterpiece down from the wall.
As I stepped down the attic stairs I thought about that Periwinkle Sunset again. And for the first time in many years, I smiled. 🙂