“Our father was an ass!” It burst out of Henry before he even had time to think. Martin turned to look at his older brother with his mouth hanging open. “I’m sorry.” Henry said more softly, “But it’s true. Mom was honest with us, so we saw her mistake right away. Dad was a liar, full of bullshit from the day we were born so it was easier to ignore his indisgressions, and maybe you were too young when it all came to a head and maybe you couldn’t see it as plainly as I could, but Mom ignored it, and I ignored and we pretended that he was an okay man and I was mad that she couldn’t just lie the way dad did and pretend like we were still a happy family, and I was mad that she didn’t have time for us the way she used to and I was way too childish for a man my age. Either way, Lot is not responsible. She didn’t ask to be born. She didn’t ask to have an asshole father and sometimes painfully honest mother. She certainly didn’t ask to be abandoned by her older brothers. She didn’t ask to be the only one there as her mother slowly died. As our mother slowly died. The fact that she would even consider allowing us back in her life means that she is a better person than either of us could ever hope to be. Our father was an ass, and this is our attempt, our chance, to be more like our poor, painfully honest mother, and to try to be good people for once, to be good older brothers for once. So, please, if you want to keep denying this girl for whatever reason, then fine. Whatever. But stop blaming it on Dad. He doesn’t get to control our lives anymore, understand?”
“I don’t know what’s gotten into you,” Martin gapped at his big brother, “I don’t know what…” Martin trailed off, shaking his head slowly.
“I don’t either,” Henry admitted, smiling, standing up and spinning his car keys around his finger, “But really, I kind of like it.” Henry walked out, and his brother just watched him go.