Huffman Legacy 1.26 – Not Really

karen-sam-okI heard. You okay?
Not…not really.



Sam wasn’t sure his life would ever be normal again. Sure his father had willed him the house so they had a roof over their head. But the house just felt wrong. Like ghosts were haunting it. Every time he turned around something was broken and needed fixing and mom wasn’t around to fix it.

03-25-16_11-06-53 PM

He didn’t even want to think about how Izzy was taking things. They hadn’t talked much since the funeral. Losing dad had been expected. It didn’t hurt any less for that, but at least it hadn’t been a complete shock. Mom’s had been.

03-25-16_11-17-38 PM

She tried after dad’s death. He could tell she was struggling to keep it together. There were even a few good times when he though maybe he’d be able to pull her out of it. But then she’d just slipped away.

“You’re doing good, Sam. I have no regrets,” she said at dinner. “You’re going to be okay.”


“But Izzy? She’s too young for all this.” Sam heard the finality of what his mother was saying. He didn’t want this. He didn’t want to see another gravestone out back.

“She’ll be fine, she has you. It’s not that I don’t care about you two, but, I just….I don’t know how to continue like this.”

03-25-16_10-31-26 PM

Izzy’s birthday had been a solemn affair. But Sam had tried.

03-26-16_12-59-06 PM

And Karen tried too. She’d been around more and more. Having lost her own mother even younger than Izzy, she understood what they were going through. She understood what it was like to be alone in a house filled with memories.

Sometimes she stopped by just for an evening to help in the garden or make something to eat. Sometimes just to chat and make sure they were okay out on the island all alone.

“Thanks for coming by,” Sam said trying to pull himself out of the funk he’d been in all morning. She had to be tired to seeing him sad all the time. Hell, he was tired of being sad all the time.

“You’re going back to work tomorrow?”

03-25-16_11-16-19 PM

“Yeah, my leave is up and it will be good to get back into normal life.” If he told himself that enough times, would it make it true?

“I’ll stop by after work then.”

“You don’t have to…”

“I know, but you don’t mind, do you?”


03-26-16_1-49-52 PM

Izzy hated this house. Hated the way the water rattled in the pipes and the spurts of cold water. Hated the way the wind blew through the cracks in the walls and sounded like wailing. Hated that it was so sad all the time.

03-25-16_11-10-14 PM

She’d told Sam they should sell it and move somewhere, anywhere else.

“But mom’s garden is here,” Sam protested. “And dad built this house from nothing.”

That was the point. But Sam couldn’t see that. He saw it as his duty to preserve their parent’s memories. He seemed to like living here. And Karen. Izzy sighed. She tried really hard to like Karen, but there was something about her. Something calculating, the way she was always over, trying to be helpful. Trying to replace her mom.

03-25-16_11-14-42 PM

That had been the last straw. When Karen had told her she should finish her homework after dinner. Karen was not and was never going to be her mother. She’d stared at Sam looking for backup, but he had that sad distant look again. The one she’d taken to dubbing “Sam’s not home” – he wasn’t paying attention.

She’d left the table without a word. Sam didn’t seem to mind Karen being over all the time. They weren’t dating, not as far as she could tell, but she’d seen the way Karen looked at her brother. She wanted to be dating and if that happened…there was no way Izzy was going to stay around here. She needed to get out.

“Watcher, when did it get so late?” Sam looked up at the clock. The last ferry had left thirty minutes ago. The brownies had just finished and Karen had been waiting to try them. He still wasn’t sure why, but today he had felt like baking again.

“Oh,” Karen frowned. “That’s okay, there’s still taxi’s over the bridge.”

“But that’s really expensive.” Sam had just gotten the bills for their place and he knew Karen was paying rent on a place three times as large. Her salary wasn’t much larger than his. “Why don’t you stay the night. Go in the morning.”

03-26-16_1-58-31 PM


“Sure, no one is using …” he glanced at the bedroom door. Neither he nor Izzy had spent much time in their parent’s room. The bunk beds they’d shared might be tiny but no way they were going to stay in there. Although, it was starting to feel like wasted space.

“Oh – don’t worry, I’ll be happy enough on the couch,” Karen said quickly. “What,” she hesitated then continued, “what are you going to do with it?”

Sam rubbed his forehead. “I don’t know. I was thinking that it should be used though. Our bedroom is smaller and if we pulled out our wall, I could move the kitchen back there. It’s rather tiny.”

“That would work.” She looked over and tried to imagine the space. “The whole house is kind of tiny.”

“Dad was saving for a renovation, but that never happened.”

03-26-16_1-58-27 PM

“You should do it,” she said, suddenly decisive. “Change the place, make it your own.”

“Maybe,” he replied. But his mind was no longer on the house

“Do you like me?” she asked suddenly.


“Do you like me? I like you, but I was wondering, and I didn’t want to press. Not when you’d lost your parents. But,” she cocked her head and looked at him, a smile on her face. “you’re looking better these days, so I thought I’d ask.”

Sam thought about it. He liked hanging out with Karen and he liked having her around. He tried to imagine going through this without her.

“You don’t have to answer,” she said her smile fading. “I just…nevermind.”

“No, it’s not that.” Sam protested, forcing himself to really look at her. “I was just imagining what life would have been like these past few months without you.”


“And I think I like you.”

03-26-16_1-50-49 PM

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  1. I am so glad that it turned happy in the end there. I could not handle more heartbreak! I’m happy for Sam! I hope Izzy comes around soon… And RIP yet again to Arty and Chana 😥

    Liked by 1 person

    • I wanted to reread this and see if I could see it. You’re right there is a certain fragility about the chapter. (Ignores painful punctuation mistakes). I have an upcoming loss in my own family that I’m trying to prepare for so I channeled that a bit, I think.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It’s strong as well, in that the characters are so honest about how they’re feeling – no need to hide behind pretences or forced smiles. I like how they’re just letting themselves go through the process of grieving…and in Sam’s case, allowing someone else to help him through as well.

        (I totally, honestly, did not notice any mistakes. I was too wrapped up in the story to realise there were any!)

        *hugs and ninjapig cuddles of support* It’s therapeutic to express that creatively. ❤

        Liked by 1 person

        • The Huffmans are pretty honest in their feelings. I’m working on figuring out Karen now. She’s quite a different character and not nearly as open. She and Sam don’t have that instant connection Arturo and Chana had, but they’re worming their ways into my heart anyway.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. I wonder if Izzy will like the idea of remodeling/expanding? I know she wanted to move out/away from the constant memory of her parents…but when she sees the changes will that affect her healing process for the better or worse? Hmmm….


  3. Oh, that was unexpected. I quite like Karen, she seems to know what she wants. I can see why she wouldn’t be everyone’s cup of tea though.


    • She was just there whenever we turned around so I knew I had to give her a chance. But yeah – I’m warming up to her, she’s never mean to Sam…but she’s even more jealous that Chana was over Katie. So she’s not nice to most people.


    • She’ll be okay, honest (despite me basically ignoring her for most of gen 2). I still have great plans for Izzy.

      Around this time she actually applied (but was not accepted into a bachelorette contest – which is why she kind of disappears quick).

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I completely understand Izzys problem with Karen. Karen doesn’t come across warm at this point. I hope Sam isn’t just settling because Karen was an anchor during his mourning.

    If you think Karen is a good match I’ll open my mind (heart??) to her, but I’m not sold yet!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m not sold as well. But in my head there is a long dating/romance between them so he doesn’t end up settling. (I settled, but he doesn’t). He honestly really care for her. And she is crazy about him, possessive, but still very much in love with him. It’s pretty obvious in his reactions when she’s angry and who she gets angry at (never ever him).

      Liked by 1 person

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