Gavin felt he'd always be Timo's big brother even if there were only a few months differences in their age. Obviously, Gavin took after his Dad. Timo was always wayward from the get go.
There were the night terrors. He'd been dangerous with scissors in elementary school. Yes, he'd been violent. But usually in the end, he was the biggest danger to himself. He'd always kept them on edge at home. But Gavin's mother refused to abandon him. Of course, he seldom let her get near him, and he knew that's what hurt the worst. Timo did not want to be loved.
And yet, when he got into his teen years and the meds set in and he slept longer, he liked being other people. So his mother sent him to all sorts of acting workshops, then classes. The only drawback, he wouldn't let them come to any of his performances.
Of course, his Mom kept saying Timo was just shy to the family. They would have to deal. After all, they were at least giving him a home, a good education. She was always looking on the bright side.
Gavin wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt, yet he knew things. He wasn't even sure his mother actually knew. And if he told her, then she would have thought Gavin was the crazy one. But he knew Timo wasn't always Timo.
"So is the dog still talking to you?" Gavin got in the question before they went to pick Hattie from work to go to this milestone celebration for someone he'd never met.
"I don't have to tell you." Timo looked at him out of the corner of his eye.
"Yeah, that's what I thought." Gavin sounded as if he'd let it go, but he couldn't. He needed for Timo to tell him everything. But would he? "So what happened to this acting gig thing, you were going to pursue in New York City?"
"You know, what happened." Timo looked at him disgruntled. His face was still baby fine. "The show got cancelled."
"Well, at least you aren't playing a serial killer." Gavin wanted to look at the upside. And there was Hattie now. She seemed to be a good influence. "So what's going on with you and Hattie?"
She was definitely too sweet for him. He couldn't actually think of Timo wanting to know someone quite like her.
"Nothing is going on with Hattie and me." Timo shrugged.
"Why? She too nice to you like my mother?" Gavin was curious, yet he knew he was asking too much.
It was at that moment, he knew he asked the wrong question. Timo shut down as if on autopilot. He didn't say a word to anyone during dinner, barely picked at his food.
Gavin could see Timo wanted to be invisible, but this Derrick that Timo knew from New York City, who got him to move here, kept trying to joke with him. How bland it must be to be in suburbia.
Timo remained mute. He looked so empty. Still Gavin wondered what this brother of his was calculating in his head.