Emery looked around the house that he and his brother would be living in from now on. A part of him felt like it was wrong to stay in the house without their parents but at the same time, even if it was just the two of them, he felt like he was coming home.

“It’s strange here without Mom and Dad,” Miles murmured as he set the freshly unpacked and cleaned dishes into their proper places in the cupboards.

“Yeah,” Emery agreed. “Mi, we both realize that… it’s best to move on. Who knows where Dad is and… Mom is gone. This house… holds their memories, but it shouldn’t stand empty. Mom wouldn’t want that, right.”

The young Ballard smiled wanly and nodded. “When Mom died… it was too painful to be confronted by memories of her every day, so we left. But now… I think I can remember her without the pain… or with a smaller amount anyway.”

“You can’t hold onto that kind of pain forever,” Emery murmured. “It would eat you up inside. Letting go of the pain of a loss is part of grief… the last part.” He looked around the cozy kitchen and smiled. “I think we’ll be alright, Mi.”