[livejournal.com profile] theatrical_muse X funeral arrangements

May. 19th, 2009 07:34 pm
egomultiplied: ([teen] doesn't remind me)
[personal profile] egomultiplied
Cremation or burial? Talk about funeral arrangements.

"It is with great dismay that we must make these decision on behalf of the deceased Mr. and Mrs. Madrox," the balding man across the giant mahogany desk seemed to be miles away from the three people anchored to the other side. In the first chair sat a husky-looking man with dark hair and large eyes. His tallness was stifled by the way he slouched in his chair. Next to him was his sniffling straw-haired wife, her small lower lip trembling. Why she had bothered with makeup no one was really sure as her eye makeup was now in thick lines down her cheeks. Seated in the very back near the door in a floral recliner was a teenage boy with shaggy brown hair. His knees were set tightly together, intently sitting upon on his hands as his eyes locked with the tan carpet. Nothing could have moved him.

"However not all families who fail to clarify their wishes are fortunate enough to have fellow members to help us with their final arrangements," the sparse-haired man adjusted the collar of his gray suit. Fifteen year old Jamie Madrox didn't understand why anyone would wear a suit in this humidity but his aunt and uncle accepted it without a blink of an eye. It was a hot Wednesday in August when the remaining collection of Madroxes had planned to make the final arrangements for their beloved brother, their in-laws and their parents at the Green Terrace Funeral Home.

The funeral director laced his hands together delicately as his body stretched forward across the desk. His tiny shrew eyes glistened behind his gold-rimmed glasses. Jamie was not sure if it was sympathy or just an adaptation to his profession. The predatory glance made him nervous either way. "Has there been any thought given on what is to be done with the remains?"

"There was an accident," Jamie's aunt sniffed into a tissue. "I…I'm sure you understand. Cremation would be the most humane."

"Goddamn it, Joyce, my brother isn't going to be cremated!" his uncle restrained himself from shooting up in his chair like an asp at full height. The steely glare he fired towards the small woman was a fair indication they had debated on this topic many times before.

"Oh for God's sake," she whispered under her breath, her eyes moving from the director to a tight-lidded barrier from her husband's burning glare. The funeral director merely tuggged at his collar once more.

"Yes, well, you and yours have ninety days to decide since you have signed the release fourm from the ah, morgue," he assured in a formal tone. At that point Jamie rose from his seat and stepped into the hallway. He could hear whispers and fidgeting in the room (something along the lines of "He's never been this quiet before") but none of the conversation concerned him any longer. For now he would simply follow the dark patterns on the cream-colored carpet of the hallway to see where it would take him. He passed a coffee-maker and a platter of cookies without lifting his head. What finally caught his attention was the ajar sliding-panel door that led into the actual chapel. The large room was empty but the laid-out platform near the altar led him to believe it wouldn't be for long. For now he would simply have a seat. It was a quiet refuge from his crying, the constant fury he felt towards his aunt and his uncle for removing him from his home and the violent emotional turmoil. This place with its rows of strong, wooden benches and sparse armchairs was a secret paradise and for the moment it was all his. Now he could face facts in a surreal sort of living room.

The funeral chapel was much larger than it looked on the outside but it was empty. It seemed like a waste of space to him. Between the tanks full of vibrant coral and tropical fish, the comfortable chairs in the lobby and the paneled interior this seemed like the last place he would have to face a harsh realization like the death of his beloved parents. The hospital, on the other hand, had been a frenzied place that smelled stale where no one looked you in the eye. His heart had raced there but now it didn't seem to be beating at all.

Jamie's parents were dead. This was a fact he knew well and yet somehow he couldn't believe it. He had cried the past few days but a place like the Green Terrace Funeral Home made the entire thing surreal.


Five days later Jamie Madrox stood above ground with his aunt and uncle as two slate-colored boxes housing two urns were lowered into the pit beneath him. Inside of those plastic bins were all that was left of his parents. That obscure fact had not sunk in until the top of the lids vanished just out of his reach. There was no longer any colorful fish nor any more comfortable couches. Complimentary cookies and juice were a thing of the past. The most significant change was that no longer were there any parents coming home from a long day at work ready to be entertained, to hear a joke or just to shoot the breeze. A tight fist clenched on the leg of his pants to keep himself from reaching out to them. Underneath his suit was the creation his parents had helped create for him to lead a normal life. It was a gesture of love, not of repression.

Now that they were gone the last thing he wanted was to be normal. He would always be surrounded, he would always be loved…nothing could change Jamie Madrox. He was unique, just as his parents had always told him.

Jamie Madrox [Multiple Man]
Word Count x 977
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May 2010


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