The Greenhouse

The image above used for the prompt comes from Kleg’s Pixiv.net page.

 

Water poured from the end of the metal, watering can showering the plants with little water droplets. The water pooled on the leaves before sliding down the plant to the soil down below.

I loved watching the water flow.

I moved on to the next one and showered it in water as well.

“Meow.”

I glanced up at Chico. My grandmother’s cat. Slender, black, and very noisy. Chico always made his presence known.

He sat on top of the balcony. Just laying there looking at me with his large, yellow eyes as his black tail wagged up and down like it was buoyant and floating through the air.

“Chico, I’m busy with the plants,” I told him. “You’ll just have to wait.”

“Meow.”

Cats weren’t good at being patient. Especially not Chico.

I continued on with my routine moving from plant to plant within the Greenhouse. I had to go to the hose several times to refill my watering can before returning to the plants. Eventually I had watered all the plants.

The soil was now a deep brown color and the plants had dewdrops on their leaves. The smell of wet earth filled the air.

I took a deep breath.

I sat down beside the stone wall and looked out the large, glass windows. The sun was still high in the sky filling the entire room with warm light.

“Meow.”

Chico hopped down off the ledge and now sat at my feet. He continued to look at me.

“Not now, Chico,” I stuck my tongue out at him but his composure didn’t change.

I sat the watering can down next to me and reached into my bag. I pulled out my art supplies and my sketch pad.

“This is the perfect light to do some drawing,” I said flipping through pages until I found a blank one.

I pulled out one of my special art pencils and started to sketch.

I loved drawing nature. Trees. Animals. The sunset. Anything where I could be outside and get to experience it as I drew. That’s what really helped my art stand out. Experiencing it.

Chico hoped up on the ledge closest to the windows and curled up into a ball. He enjoyed the sunlight as well.

I spent the next couple of hours sketching the different plants, flowers, and bushes in the greenhouse. None of them really turned out as good as I was hoping. I usually went through a lot of sketches before one turned out good. I went through a lot of pencils and paper with my drawings.

Eventually there was a knock on the door and I turned my head.

“Hey Sweetie, you still watering the plants?” My dad poked his head into the greenhouse.

I gave him a slight smile before returning to the sketch I was working on.

“No, I finished watering them a while ago. Now I’m just drawing,” I replied.

“I see that Chico is keeping you company,” My dad said.

At the mention of his name, Chico popped his head up and looked at my dad.

“Meow.”

“I bet he’s hungry. Why don’t we go back inside. We’ll get him some food,” My dad said.

“I’m not done with my drawing,” I said.

My words were sharp and angry.

Immediately I drooped my head and put down my pencil.

“Sorry,” I said softly.

My dad stepped into the greenhouse and knelt down beside me.

“It’s ok, Sarah,” My dad put a hand on my shoulder. “I know that you really like the greenhouse.”

There was a brief moment of silence.

“And I know you really miss her,” He finished.

Her.

That word hung in the air for a while.

Her.

My grandmother.

She had passed away just a few days ago. My mom and dad didn’t give me a lot of details, but I knew she had been sick for a while. Her memory was starting to fade. She would sometimes forget where she was or what year was it. She called my Mom by the wrong name. Instead calling her by my great-aunt’s name instead even though my great-aunt had passed away before I was even born.

But she didn’t forget who I was. She was always so happy to see me. My grandma would talk about the vacation where we went as a family to Disney World when I was eight. She would tell that story every time I would see her. Then we would go out to the greenhouse and water the plants.

Chico would always follow alongside meowing the whole way there and back.

I leaned into my dad and buried my head into his chest.

“I miss her so much,” I said.

The hot tears streamed down my face wetting my cheeks and the front of his shirt.

“I know you do, sweetie,” He said wrapping his arms around me and pulling me close.

He held me there for a few minutes. Neither of us spoke. We just hugged each other and I continued to cry.

Eventually there was another knock on the door and my mom popped her head in.

“I was wondering what was taking you two so long,” She said with a small smile.

“Sorry,” I said.

“We were just taking in the beauty of all this wonderful plant life,” My dad said talking over me.

My mom smiled.

“She did always take care of these plants, didn’t she?”

I nodded.

“Yeah Grandma did always have a green thumb,” I said.

“More like a green hand,” My mom said and we all laughed.

My dad grabbed my hand.

“I think that’s something she passed down to you,” He said with a smile.

I nodded and smiled a bit.

“Well we better get ready to go,” My mom said. “Big day tomorrow with the funeral.”

“Can we come back here after the…the funeral?” I asked.

“Of course we can,” My dad said.

“Sounds like a wonderful idea,” My mom looked at my dad and then back to me.

“Great,” I smiled.

I put my art supplies back into my bag and slung it over my bag.

I walked up to my mom and threw my arms around her.

“I love you,” I said.

She wrapped her arms around me.

“I love you too, sweetie.”

My dad joined in on the hug wrapping his arms around the two of us.

We stood there in the greenhouse for another moment in one large embrace. The sun was just starting to set which filled the greenhouse with a variety of vibrant colors.

“Meow.”

Chico spoke up and we all laughed breaking from our embrace.

“Ok, Chico, we’ll get you some food,” I said.

We all walked to the house hand in hand leaving behind the greenhouse for the evening. However I had an idea that we didn’t leave it empty. My grandma’s spirit lived on in those plants and the knowledge she had passed down to me. Her retelling of our trip to Disney World and her laughter still filled my head. It was almost like she was there in the greenhouse.

I knew I would return everyday with a watering can and Chico by my side. I would water the plants and tell that Disney World story every day. I would laugh and I would cry.

That greenhouse would be my solace.

 

 


Header Photo Credit to Klegs on Pixiv.net
https://www.pixiv.net/member_illust.php?mode=medium&illust_id=68153463

5 thoughts on “The Greenhouse

Add yours

  1. Wonderful story and thank you for providing credit to the artist! The art is wonderful and I’ll be sure to be looking at the artist’s gallery. This short story reminded me of my own grandmother. She loved cats and she had a lot of orchids. Whenever I water my succulents, it takes me back to her 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your comment. I’m really glad you liked the story. It sounds like your grandmother was an awesome person and I’m glad you have that connection with her. For me, whenever I eat Vanilla Wafer Cookies, I think about my Grandpa. We used to eat a ton of those together. It’s strange and awesome how those connections stick in our mind forever.

      Also I always try my best to credit the artist. Especially when I use their art as my prompt.

      Liked by 1 person

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