Chapter 20 – Father and Son: Page 36

Chapter 20 - Father and Son - Page 36

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  • Donald Burch

    I suspect we know the real answer to that. I hate to think Arthur is all bad but some people carry poison in their hearts. All they can do is poison others. On another note I’m really liking this new info about Felipe. Why am I not surprised that he was a pothead? Ah, how human beings can vex and perplex reason. Arthur, who is arguably more “successful” has proven to be a cancer on the lives of everyone around him while Felipe, arguably a “societal reject” fought tooth and nail to do right by his sister and his nephew. Elan, meanwhile occupies that rare niche of being as beautiful without as within and here he feels he has wronged everyone. Such richness of souls in one story is a joy to behold. Thank you Mice! I cannot express adequately how much I appreciate your hard work.

    • Jonni

      We all develop strategies for dealing with life. Loking back at Elan’s memories of some of Arthur Singer’s comments, I think as a child he saw a mean, ruthless world out there and decided the only way to survive it was to be meaner and more ruthless than anyone else. It was his way to survive and thrive – and as a businessman, it served him very well, as a human being, not so much. But if that was all that there ever was to Arthur Singer, why in the world would Elan’s mother marry him? I wonder if she was the one person who could bring out the tenderness in him, the only person he ever let close enough to hurt him. When she died, Arthur Singer would have felt the pain of loss all the more keenly because he had never let himself care enough to get hurt before; did he regret the years that he loved whilst he was in the pain of mourning? Would he swear to never let anyone close enough to hurt him again? As far as Elan goes, I’m guessing in the early years Arthur Singer was trying to toughen his boy up “to be a man” like him, but being tough and ruthless is the only thing he knows how to do and the only strategy he sees for “success” is to be tough and ruthless against his son, because that’s just the way the world works in his mind. I think that Arthur Singer proves himself to be a bad man by his attitudes and actions, but like most bad people, he’s not someone who was born evil – just a tragic story of his own bad choices, false conclusions and the denial of his own heart.

      • Donald Burch

        I like your observation of Arthur Singer’s motives and attitudes. It seems very much in keeping with the character as presented in the story. I don’t believe in two-dimensional evil. No one intentionally does what they think is wrong. They might employ flimsy or ill-considered justifications or like you mentioned, simply pass on what they learn in life in a sincere effort to help their children. It still leads to lasting harm that they can’t seem to grasp. So, it must be the child’s fault. It is tragic and it happens in real life all the time. I enjoy how EMR inspires me to reflect on life, to see it with a clearer perspective. Through the frailties of these all too-human characters I gain insight on how to become a better person to those I love. I learn when to forgive and when to hold others accountable. I treasure this work for that reason.

        • Jonni

          I know what you mean. I love the way this story shows there are ways to be strong without flexing muscles at people, that character and tenderness are also strengths and how good people nourish one-another by being good to each other – and how selfish people ultimately undo themselves with their own selfishness. The characters show the importance of compassion, understanding and the dangers of making assumptions and that the real treasure is not money, but each other.

  • Aurelie86

    Am I crazy to point out that the bruising is pretty? Like it stands out in a subtle way. It’s like a little sunset on his neck. I really, really love his Uncle. So honest and earnest.

    • Donald Burch

      Not at all. Mice can make anything look lovely, even a bruise. Agreed, Uncle Felipe is a breath of fresh air in a smoggy town. I look forward to seeing how the story develops from here.

  • I love you Uncle Felipe! “I don’t care what you do with it, I just wanted to make sure you got it.” *hugs* It is also really great that he isn’t telling Elan what he should or should not do. Finally someone who is going to let him make his own choices.

    • Donald Burch

      How much you want to bet that Elan misreads that as Uncle Felipe not caring? I was in that state of mind at Elan’s age. I had an infuriating way of twisting everything to support my toxic belief that I was worthless. It’ll take someone like Felipe to help Elan heal that damage. It’ll take a mixture of endless patience and no-nonsense honesty. Oh, and toss in a heaping tablespoon or two of logic to thwart Elan’s attempt to deflect and excuse. Elan is smart and that will thankfully work against the damage Arthur has wrought against him but it won’t be easy.

  • Seriously, I love this man. He’s just gorgeous and outspoken. Also, mice
    in the small amount time that we’ve seen Uncle Felipe, His and Elan’s relationship is quite beautiful.

  • Michel Proulx

    Even poison to himself, since it seems that he just managed to loose what big money he had made…

  • kuku

    This is the question, all right. I think The Mice said once that Elan’s dad did really love his mom. I wonder if he was jealous of her love for Elan. And then resentful that Elan didn’t have to fight his way to a higher income/social standing, the way the dad had. And/or so stuck in sexist thinking that he couldn’t value in a boy the sensitivity he could love in a woman. Surely she wouldn;t have married him if there were no love there? But it must have been so painful for her, the way he treated Elan.

    • Donald Burch

      I’m loathe to see any character as two-dimensional evil, especially given the depth Mice has given all of the characters in this story to date. Regardless of any love Arthur might have felt or shown for Elan at one time it can never undo the damage he has wrought since. I might pity the man but I still gain a measure of satisfaction from saying to Arthur Singer, “Sucks to be you.” In that Elan is a better soul than I.

  • Lleyn

    Poor Elan, still looking for a way to soften the blow he received. I guess it’ll be easier for him to see his father as a human being if Arthur at least loved Lily. But the hopeless romantic in me wants to believe that, too, that there was a time when Arthur was a person worth loving, and he’s been twisted into the despicable person he is now by his acquisition of money and the power and greed that comes with it.

  • JesBelle

    Yay! Age-appropriate crush fodder. I’d bake brownies for you any day Felipe.

  • Kendall

    Oh what a sad, sad final question from Elan….

    • Donald Burch

      I agree, Kendall it is a sad question. Who wants to think ill of a parent? It is a special wound on the soul to feel scorn, hate, and rejection from a parent. I can imagine what Elan’s thought process might be. Maybe, if Arthur loved his wife then perhaps there is hope between him and Elan in the future? If there was once love in his heart perhaps Elan can eventually figure out how to “make” his father love him? I mentioned on another occasion about how love had to be free. This is true for any kind of love. Elan can no more make his father love him that Arthur Singer can force his son to be the man he wants. In some respect Elan’s stubborn hope shows how he and his father are alike.

  • I AM R U

    Potentially one reason Elan’s father “hates” him so much is that Elan reminds Arthur of his dead wife too much… Making him resent Elan and poisoning what could be a shared mutual grief into resentment and hatred… Not an excuse, just a thought. A single father “abandoned” by the death of his wife and saddled with a child who only makes him feel more miserable by reminding him of the wife who’s “left him”… Doesn’t make him less of a dick, mind you. But perhaps he should have tried some therapy.

    • Jonni

      Therapy requires the admission that you have a problem. Arthur Singer is far too arrogant to do that – he always twists things to see someone else at fault, his ego has always been his armour – now it’s become a millstone instead.

  • Rache

    Aww, I hope he says yes, because that’s just sad :/