The Garden

Jasper lived in a pretty nice neighborhood, his neighbors stayed out of his business, while still maintaining contact through idle chit-chat. Nobody had anything bad to say about him. He was quiet, polite, and had a very lovely garden for only being in 8th grade. His parents had been injured in an out-of-state automobile accident about a month ago, making them unable to leave the house and subjecting them to bedrest until they had healed.

Everyday Jasper went to school and came home straight afterwards to take care of his parents. Jasper wasn’t necessarily popular at school, but he had a couple of very nice friends so he wouldn’t have to spend his school days alone. When asked by his friends to hang out after school though he always politely declined telling them he had important business to attend to, and knowing about his parents, they left him alone about it.

Each month Jasper would go to the post office to collect his parents disability check and go to the store for everything he would need until the next check came. Looking at his house you would never suspect a 13-year-old boy was taking care of everything. The house itself was actually very dull and in dire need of a paint job, but nobody noticed with the bright, colorful, fully bloomed flowers that surrounded the place.

Jasper had taken up gardening after his parents accident learning that he was actually quite good at it. He made sure that he took care of his garden every day, using his own homemade fertilizer to keep it thriving. All of the people in town asked him what he put in his fertilizer to keep his plants so pretty, and each time his answer was exactly the same “My parents helped me” he would tell them as he finished up, turned around, and disappeared back into the house. Inside of the house, Jasper kept everything neat and tidy, making sure nothing was out-of-place.

He hoped that his parents would have been proud of him, but sat by and watched as they depleted more and more with each passing day. This thought terrified him because he knew once his parents were gone, his precious garden would be too.

A couple of weeks later his parents finally disappeared leaving no trace. People watched as the beautiful garden that Jasper had worked so hard on, faded day after day no one having any idea as to why this was happening, for only Jasper knew of his parents misfortune. People started to notice something was wrong when Jasper hadn’t stepped out of his house for a week, not even to collect his monthly check or attend school.

Meanwhile inside of the house, Jasper had been thinking and planning, just trying to figure out what to do now. At the end of the week, after carefully going over everything in his head Jasper had come to a conclusion, the only way he could possibly think of to save what he loved. He was to finally destroy the guilty.

Jasper smiled to himself as he walked down the stairs to his basement. Upon reaching the bottom of the stairs Jasper took a sharp right, finding himself in a small room. Standing in front of him was a boy his age. The boy was skinny as if he hadn’t eaten in days, with shaggy black hair badly in need of a trim.

Jasper and the boy both sat down and Jasper finally spoke, “You killed them.” The boy stared at Jasper with piercing blue eyes. “You killed them and don’t even care” Jasper mumbled turning his head down towards the floor too filled with emotions to even look at the boy. As Jasper glanced up he saw the boy looking at him as a grin spread across the boy’s face, his eyes becoming darker until they were almost black. Of course the boy knew what happened to Jasper’s parents, but Jasper knew too.

It happened late one night, after everyone had gone to bed. Earlier Jasper had gotten into a fight with his parents after coming home from his friend’s house hours after they told him to be home. It was their 4th fight this week, with Jasper not telling them where he was one night, another was when he left in the middle of dinner after his parents telling him that he was only 13 and shouldn’t be acting like this, the day before he had even missed his grandmothers birthday party.

Jasper had been particularly angry at his parents when he went to bed, even pulling the classic teenager line “nobody understands me”, before slamming his door behind him. After having a discussion over what to do about Jasper, his parents decided to go to bed and talk to him in the morning. As soon as he was sure that they had fallen asleep the boy snuck into Jasper’s parents room and pulled out the 2 plastic bags he had brought with him for this cause.

“Suffocation… torturous and no mess.” The boy says looking at Jasper with his dark eyes the grin still decorating his pale face. Jasper looks down and sees a single tear drip against the floor. He had felt absolutely awful about how he treated them and tried to do his best for his parents afterwards. His mother had loved flowers but she was terrible at growing them, all she wanted was to grow flowers and make the world a little more beautiful, with Jaspers help she finally did, as did his father.

The nutrients from their bodies made the flowers grow extra big and bright. “You think you helped them when in reality you just got rid of the bodies for me” the boy said. When Jasper looked up all he could focus on was his anger. The boy had ruined his life, taking his parents from him once already and now all he had left was his garden and that too, was dying without their help. The grin had disappeared off the boys face and his eyes were back to their original blue, but Jasper didn’t care anymore.

Jasper and the boy stood up, he pulled out the knife he brought down with him and thrusted it forward with all of the force he could manage. What brings Jasper back to reality is the distinct shattering sound and the feeling of pain in his throat, followed by the sudden sensation of choking. Jasper drops the knife, yanking out the glass like shard which appeared to be what pierced his throat. Soon his mouth tastes metallic, his vision goes blurry, and he drops to the ground. The last thing he sees is his face staring back at him through the broken mirror.

  • Stephen White

    OK, well . . . did not see that ending coming . . .