“Seeing isn’t believing. Believing is seeing.” – Judy (The Santa Clause)
I blinked at Kevin….not believing what he had said.
“What did you say?” I asked, looking down at him.
“Brian’s your brother.” he repeated. My heart literally stopped, it hit me like a ton of bricks. Brian? Woody? was my……my brother?
I needed a drink.
I grabbed for the beer in front of me and chugged it, tossing the cup down. I couldn’t even watch whoever was performing on TV….I think it was No Doubt.
“Brian?” I shook him but he was fast asleep. I was alone. Both of them had passed out and I was left alone.
I turned off the TV and went outside, looking up at the stars. I could see the fireworks coming from Disney World across town. They were really nice….but so far away. Everything was so far away and confusing. All I wanted was everything to go back to normal.
The next morning Kevin was up before me as if nothing had happened, he was even whistling as he cooked breakfast. I helped set the table but I was pissed at him.
While I was annoyed at him for leaving me alone when the ball dropped, I was pissed at the fact that he threw me together with Brian…let me live with him for three months without telling me he was related to me. In fact, I’d gone my whole life not knowing he’d existed. I felt sick.
“What’s wrong?” he asked slowly, putting a plate of bacon on the table. I grabbed a piece and started chewing.
“You lied to me.” I snapped. He stared at me in confusion and that’s when it hit me, he remembered nothing from the night before.
“Oh, crap. Nick….I was drunk. It must have slipped.”
His attitude outraged me even more and I practically laughed at him.
“Slipped? Kevin, why didn’t you tell me? He’s my roommate. You knew all along and you never told me.”
He dropped the frying pan on his foot, splashing grease everywhere as he cursed. Karma was a bitch.
“What are you…..I don’t know what you’re talking about.” he stuttered, hopping slightly as he went to get paper towels. Brian still wasn’t up yet and I planned on talking to him. We’d been lied to our whole lives.
“Kevin, I know he’s my brother. You blurted it out as it hit midnight. When were you gonna fucking tell me?” I shouted, standing there in my Goofy boxers and a tank top. I didn’t care if I wasn’t wearing pants at that point. I needed an answer.
“Well, I was gonna tell you. I don’t know when….but we did plan on telling you. Sit down.” he said, offering me a chair. I found out a lot of shit….that my dad had dated both Brian’s mom and my mom around the same time.
Now I know where Brian got the womanizer skills from.
Apparently my dad was married to my mom when he saw Jackie again. They had an affair, and that resulted in Brian when I was a month old. My dad was not told about Brian being his son at all or about his birth, Brian never knew about his real father, and life went on.
I suddenly felt very bad for Brian. I couldn’t tell him all that…..his head would explode from all that information. At least not now, anyway.
“So he’s my half brother then?” I asked, slightly less angry. Now everything made a bit more sense. Kevin had put us together not for Brian to watch over me, but for us to get to know each other without feeling we had to.
“You can tell him, if you like. Just wait for the right moment. You’ll know when that is.” Kevin said with a wink, and with that he went back to making breakfast. How was I supposed to eat without blabbing everything?
I suddenly wished my dad was here so I could smack him and to tell him how much of an ass he was.
Brian and I went back to college a couple days later and we immersed ourselves in schoolwork for the first couple of weeks. We didn’t see each other a whole lot except before bed and our weekly pizza run on Fridays. I was mostly in the animation lab, we had started to learn basic animation stuff. It was a lot of fun, but I was beginning to get depressed as my birthday inched closer.
“So did you decide what you want to do for your birthday?” Brian asked. I had been kind of avoiding him since I found out we were related, and I think he was catching on to the fact something bothered me because he kept offering to take me places.
“I don’t celebrate my birthday.” I said flatly, staring down at my half eaten pizza that had long gone cold.
“Nick, what is wrong with you? You’ve been like this since new year’s. We haven’t gone anywhere since we started school. Let’s go on a trip.” he smiled.
“I don’t think it is a good idea.” I protested. I kept getting this feeling something was going to happen. I never went anywhere around the day of the accident for this reason, the fear that history would repeat itself. I never told anyone but I always thought I was meant to die with my family and that one day Death would find me too. This was why I stayed away from cars.
“Well, I guess these passes to Disney World will go to waste then.” Brian told me, holding up the tickets. I hadn’t been there in a long time but part of me just couldn’t get excited. He looked disappointed and I put on a fake smile for him.
The morning of my birthday me and Brian set out for Orlando, which was an hour and a half away from campus. It was a weekend, but the only free time we had. We were gonna early in the morning but I didn’t want to get out of bed, he had to practically drag me. If this was any other day, I’d be waiting by the door before anyone else got up.
“Dude, if you don’t get up I’m coming in there after you. I thought you loved Disney.” Brian commented, scratching his head. I sighed and got dressed, every second I looked at him I felt more guilty for knowing.
After showering and getting dressed, we headed out. Halfway through our trek he looked at me and noticed how I was slumped against the window, sighing and being all emo.
“Nick, I thought you would be excited….we’re going to the happiest place on earth.” he said.
“I told you I don’t celebrate my birthday. I haven’t been to Disney since my parents passed away….I love it there but they died 9 years ago today.” I confessed. We hadn’t talked about them much since we had met and he seemed to feel horrible that he had made me go somewhere which would make me more depressed.
“Shoot, I’m sorry. I’m so insensitive. Do you want to go back home? We could always hang out in the dorm and get Chinese food or something.” he said.
“Nah, you already spent the money. I’m just being emo, Bri. I’m sure once we get there I will cheer up. I can’t wait to see the new rides. I’ve been keeping up on their website.” I smiled to make him feel better. As much as I didn’t want to go, he had gone through all this trouble so I decided to suck it up and deal with it.
But one thing I decided in the back of my mind…..I was gonna tell Brian before our trip was over for sure.
I went back to watching the window…it was a nice day, it seemed like everything was gonna be just fine.
Then why did I feel like going to Disney was going to be one giant mistake?