Biographical Non-Fiction posted March 8, 2022 Chapters:  ...9 10 -11- 12... 

This work has reached the exceptional level
A sad and heartbreaking truth

A chapter in the book Contest Entry and Winners

A Loss Greater Than One

by Begin Again

True Story Contest Winner 

I'd chosen a booth in the rear of the restaurant, away from prying eyes. I'd played the upcoming scene out in my mind a hundred times, but nothing washed away the dread building inside me.
I'd laid the leather binder to the side, unopened. It didn't matter because I'd read it repeatedly, agonizing over its contents. I'd probably still be carrying on a battle with myself if my brother and his wife hadn't written me a three-page letter, accusing me of keeping his rightful inheritance and threatening legal action if I didn't respond immediately.
Their letter arrived on Christmas Eve. I believed they hoped to disrupt my holidays. They had no way of knowing how wrong they were or why I hadn't shared the will.
Knowing my brother, I'd chosen a public place and asked him to come alone. As I watched him enter the restaurant, my heart was pounding. His Cheshire-cat grin told me exactly how he was feeling about our meeting.
As he slid into the booth, he laughed. "Guess the letter scared you, huh? We figured it would."
His cockiness was what I needed to send my concerns for his welfare straight into the trash. I no longer felt sorry for him. He'd refused to help care for my parents, using every empty excuse possible, but he still felt entitled.
"So, what have you been keeping from me? You should have known we wouldn't sit back and wait."
I'd rehearsed what I would say, but I couldn't remember a single word. I had always believed we shared the love of a brother and sister, but at that moment, I didn't know the stranger across the table. He didn't even have the decency to mention the holidays or the woman we called our mother. His focus was on the leather binder lying on the table.
His dark eyes met my misty ones. Part of me wanted to scream terrible obscenities at him, and part of me felt pity for who he was.
I took a deep breath and pulled the binder in front of us. He reached for it, and my trembling hands claimed it first. The words tumbled from my lips. "I'm sorry, but as the sole trustee and now owner of the trust, I can't allow you to read it."
"Why not? Hiding something?" His smirk was chilling. "Afraid you might not get everything?"
I choked back my tears and opened the binder, removing one page. I pushed it across the table. "I wasn't hiding anything. I was trying to protect you."
He grabbed the paper and read the highlighted sentence.
I, Margaret E., being of sound mind, exclude my son, Gene W. and his descendants, from any inheritance, with the sole provision, I provide him the amount of one dollar.
He crumpled the paper as I added, "That's what I've been hiding."


Writing Prompt
Story MUST include You and a Sibling--sibling (brother or sister) may have told you the story,
if so, then mention sibling's name in first paragraph
Word count 450 minimum/500 maximum
No vulgar words, profanity, or sex/sexual terms
/sexual innuendos implied or hinted in dialogue/scenes
No satire No war stories or Dear John letters
No deathbed stories in hospital, home, or hospice care
though death of people may be mentioned
No adoption stories of any kind--people or animals

True Story
Contest Winner


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