Deep in thought after watching more of Lancer episodes, I just love the episodes where Johnny shows some affection towards Murdoch either with a look, a quick slide of the hand, or just a jest, but the affection was there non-the-less. Hope you enjoy my little drabble and please excuse the mistakes.
Even at a young age, life has a way of throwing things at a youth that are quite hard to handle, even if one does pride themselve with the ability to handle lives challenges. Johnny was one to always rely on no one. He learned, at quite a young age, many survival skills. He now has a family and has become extremely comfortable with that aspect of his life. Some might say he is a young man with the soul of an old man. For someone who has had to deal with many heart wrenching choices and survived, there are times when he finds himself feeling like an inexperienced young man who wants and needs the guidance or reassurance of an older man.
There is a time where solitude might be the only absolution in dealing with an inner turmoil. Inner serenity is a quality that can help handle moments of absolution. But if that serenity is clouded, how will he cope? How does he ask for help?
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“John. Taking a break?”
‘I hate it when he calls me John. Guess I better buckle up and get ready for the lecture.’
“Yeah, thought I’d rest up a bit. Beautiful day for it, huh?”
“Yes, beautiful enough for me to take a break myself.” Murdoch took in the scenery. “God knows son, you’ve worked harder than any one I know. I must say that I am very impressed and quite proud of you, plus I’m extremely thankful… (ahem) anyway… you deserve a long break.”
Johnny blushed a bit as he sat leaning against the large trunk of the tree. Preparing himself, Murdoch grunted as he lowered himself down next to Johnny.
“Think you’ll be able to get back up old man?”
His father saw the teasing grin. “Well, I do hope my younger stronger son will assist me. If not, I guess I’ll become one with the tree.”
They both sat in silence for a while admiring the creation before them. It was indeed a beautiful day, too beautiful to have longings, regrets or sorrow lurking in ones heart. Murdoch could see that his youngest was going through something and it bothered him in a concerned fatherly way. Scott was attending a reunion of sorts with his chums at Harvard and wouldn’t be back for another two weeks. Murdoch wasn’t sure he could stand watching his little boy heart break with each passing day.
Weighing heavy on his mind, he decided to finally speak up. “You know son… um… there are times in a person’s life when we are… full of regrets or have things we wished we had done to avoid the outcome of our lives…”
“Murdoch, I’m fine… I just… “
“John… Johnny….please let me finish. I need to say this.”
His son just nodded and placed his arms stretched out onto his knees that almost rested up against his chest. He picked up a branch and fiddled with it as he listened.
“Anyway, I know we can’t change the past and I’ve come to accept that both my boys had a life… (sigh) … that I was not a part of. I am dealing with that, but… “ He placed a hand on Johnny’s knee. “Son, when I see one of you… hurting, doubting some decision you’ve made or need to make, well, it makes me go back to… my wondering, ‘What if…. or if only?’. He too picked up a branch and started to break it into smaller pieces as he thought.
“Murdoch, really… I appreciate what you are trying to say. I miss Scott, but I’ll be fine. God, he’ll be back!” Johnny chuckled.
“Yes, he will be back, thankfully. I miss him too, but he is not what I am referring to.” He glanced over to Johnny whose face changed from a small glimmer of content to a solemn pout.
“If only…” Murdoch continued. “… I had had a part in the up bringing of my boys, maybe you two would feel more comfortable… in discussing things with me. Now don’t get me wrong. I love the way you two have each other.” He chuckled at a quick memory.
Johnny looked up and expressed a puzzled frown at his father.
“Sorry son, the memory of the two of you running around chasing each other for a quick mud fight…” He shook his head and smiled. “Anyway… where was I?” He shifted to get more comfortable. “I hate that I wasn’t there for you. Even if we have become a family, it still bothers me.”
Johnny quickly patted his father on the leg. “It shouldn’t.”
“Oh, but it does. I’ve never stopped thinking about you and when the two of you walked back into my life… the love just overwhelmed me.” He turned his face away from his son. “So, I guess what I am trying to say son is that, even if I wasn’t a part of your life for all those years, I am now.”
Johnny felt in his heart that maybe, just maybe, he was ready to confide in this man.
“Murdoch… I… hell, this is hard. I do… need you. I do want to tell you, but…” He quickly stood and walked away.
“Johnny, please.” His father tried to stand and Johnny ran over to help him up.
“Damn old man, you’re heavy.” He smiled and tried to turn away, but his father had already placed a hand on his shoulder.
“You don’t need to tell me now or ever. All I want you to know is that I am here and God willing, I always will be… good or bad… I will listen, if you need me to. I’ll try to offer some advice or just listen. Whenever you need most, just you and me son.”
Murdoch started to walk away when he felt Johnny’s hand turn him around. Now facing his son, his heart melted and he sighed when he saw his son, not a stranger, but his boy with pleading wet eyes wanting and needing him, now!
The End or the beginning for better days