Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way. My family used to be like all those happy families. Then Grandpa came to live with us. He was in a wheelchair and couldn’t go upstairs. Dad had to convert his den into a bedroom for Grandpa and expand the bathroom so it had a special shower in it.
I was only 10 at the time and I really didn’t want to spend much time downstairs when he was out of his room. It wasn’t that I didn’t like him but there was something about the way he looked at me that made me self conscious.
Mom and Dad didn’t usually leave me alone with him but one night Dad called and said he needed a ride home. “You can stay with Grandpa,” Mom said.
“Okay,” I had replied then turned back to the show I was watching.
“Jenna! I dropped my book,” he called about 10 minutes after mom left. I jumped off the couch and went to his room. His chair was next to the bed and the book was on the floor almost under the bed. I bent over to pick it up, forgetting that I was wearing my school uniform.
I felt a hand on my butt. It caressed the cheek then a finger slid under the fabric between my legs. I froze. The finger slid inside me and I could hear Grandpa’s zipper. Then I heard moaning behind me.
“Oh god yes!” he cried out then slid the finger out.
“Here … here’s your book,” I said and put it on the bed then ran out of the room.
Several minutes later Grandpa came out of his room. “If say anything, I’ll tell them about how you broke your mother’s vase.”
Grandpa’s book fell under his bed whenever my parents were out of the house for the next year. It was the same thing every time. I never said anything about it; I didn’t want to get grounded.
Then, one morning, Dad went into Grandpa’s room. He was dead. During the night his breathing machine had come unplugged. There was an inquiry by the police but it was declared an accident.
We never became a happy family again. But I didn’t mind. The look on Grandpa’s face when I unplugged his breathing machine gave me something to smile about every day.