The Lake by Kelsey H

 Kyle Lewis was discovered dead in the lake the summer I turned 16 and received my license. The week before Christmas, the town was oppressively hot. Kyle didn't drown even though many people went to the lake to cool off. He did not have any water in his lungs.

Ten years have passed, and I'm now returning to see my parents. As always, I found myself slowing down when I got to the lake. I was drawn toward the turnoff on the long road that led to their house and then into town, as though a magnet were at its core and would drag me there. I pulled over, exited the vehicle, and stood there on the side.

The Lake by Kelsey H

The memories came flooding back to me. My father and I would spend our evenings working on the car he had bought for us to restore together in the garage. At our dinner table, my sister was sobbing, and my mother was consoling her while my father was silent. The long summer days, the cops, and the rumors people muttered to one another all contributed to this. the Ryan brothers' arrogance in public.

And Kyle's final day of life, as told to authorities by individuals who had seen him. He had slept till eleven that day. He and my sister Taylor had stayed up late the previous night drinking, and when they woke up, the bench still had the empty bottles and glasses on it, and the air was still thick with the aroma of alcohol.

They were further into town than my parents, although they shared the same long road. Every day as I rode my bike home from school, I passed their house and daydreamed of the time when my automobile would be waiting for me.

While Taylor poured them coffee, Kyle, who was groggy, sat on the couch and rolled a cigarette. He responded that he wasn't hungry when she asked him if he wanted something to eat. He was quiet, and she could see he was anxious. He was concerned that Dean Ryan and his brother Pete were growing irritated with him because he owed them money.

The police inquired about his debt to them after being informed of this. Taylor claimed Pete Ryan sold him some auto parts, and he hadn't

Following a cup of coffee and two consecutive cigarettes, Kyle showered and put on the trousers and navy t-shirt he would die in.

He informed her that he was going to a friend's house and then departed in the same manner as always, tires screeching and a cloud of dust rising into the silent air. He pulled into the Mobil at the intersection to purchase more cigarettes and an energy drink. Pete Ryan entered the store and approached him from behind as he was still seated at the counter.

Today, I'm coming to pick up," stated Pete.

The cashier overheard him say it, but she had no idea what he meant. She claimed that if Kyle responded, she didn't hear it or he didn't. Or perhaps she knew more—just like we all did—and wished to avoid upsetting the Ryan brothers.

My father attended high school with both of them in the same year as Dean, who was the oldest, and he claimed that even then, they were creating a name for themselves and raising hell all over town.

Kyle came to my father to seek for money after he left the Mobil. Dad and I were outside in the garage adjusting the car's brakes when he pulled in. We had been working on it for the previous six months. Now that I could drive, it was almost ready, just as he had promised.

When Kyle exited, my father turned to face him and his countenance turned icy. He waited while remaining still.

"May we speak?" Kyle enquired.

They went inside and entered the kitchen. After following for a minute, I approached the door silently while barely breathing. Kyle was in front his Dad, who had his arms folded and was displaying signs of desperation.

"Please, if I had someone else to ask, I wouldn't ask you. I'll repay you, I vow to God. I merely owe Pete for the automobile I obtained from him.

He was interrupted by my father's sharp laugh. "That piece of junk you're driving isn't even worth $500, much less $5,000. At least have the guts to be honest about your motivations when you come here to beg me for money.

One of the things my father hated the most was a liar. He disliked hitting women almost as much as he did a male. These two things described the partner of my sister.

Kyle said in an imploring tone, "Okay, but that's not what it sounds like. In a way he never addressed my sister before. He had never crawled for her. I owe them money from the plant I sold for them. I just had to settle the score with them; it was a one-time occurrence.

It was an adaptation of the story I'd heard, according to which he had been selling for them for a very long time. He had only skimmed a little, but they had piqued his interest.

Even though he was the same height as Kyle, Dad got off the bench with a straight back and appeared to tower over Kyle.

You want me to clean up your mess right away? Who are you calling a man?

In his critical tone, he asked the question and provided the response. A liar. a wimp. a terrible type. I was fully aware of my father's character and what he anticipated from me. a strong man who took care of his family and didn't cry or moan.

My dad then resumed speaking. "I am aware of the difficulties you are facing. I'll settle the Ryan brothers' debt for you in exchange for your leaving town and my daughter. That's the situation.

Kyle grunted strangely as he struggled.

My father grabbed him by the collar and pushed him back against the wall while the words were still partially spoken.

"You think it matters if Dean Ryan kills you? You are currently inside my home, and I will break both of your arms if I ever notice even a scratch on my daughter again.

He took a step back and once more crossed his arms as if nothing had happened. The atmosphere was silent. The only sound was a noisy, furious fly buzzing against the window.

For a moment, Kyle remained slouched against the wall, staring intently at my father while clenching and unclenching his fists. He didn't say anything more before turning and walking away. His eyes met mine when he saw me in the corridor.

He shoved his shoulder into mine as he roughshooted past me. I then experienced a chill of dread. not for me, but rather for my sister. He had been hurt by my father, and she would suffer as a result.

He departed from our home and returned to his. driving quickly up the lengthy road that separated us. When he returned, he was agitated and smoking in the kitchen. She informed the cops that he and Taylor had a fight.

He invited her to go out of town with him, and she refused, so they got into a fight. She wished to remain with her family. He assured her that she would accompany him if she truly loved him. She fell over as they were debating and slammed her face against the bench, suffering an injury.

Later on that day, Kyle took a short detour into town and entered the bar where Dean and Pete Ryan didn't partake in alcohol consumption. He became inebriated and began speaking loudly, declaring that he was not afraid of the Ryan brothers. He was prepared to kill whoever came after him first and had a knife in his hand.

The doorman ejected him from the building about nine o'clock. He was sent outside and instructed to walk it off before returning the next morning to get his car.

The doorman watched him go while he was standing there. His shaky steps as he made his way down the road that led to his own house were the last thing he saw of him before he was retrieved from the sea, bloated and with fractured bones.

Two days later, a man out fishing noticed his body as it climbed to the top of the lake. The Ryan brothers were brought in for interrogation. The crowd witnessed them being led into the station.

Pete Ryan had gone to spend the afternoon watching his son play cricket after seeing Kyle at the Mobil. He had taken him out to supper after taking him out for run after run as he stood on the sidelines and watched. After dropping him off at his mother's house once more, he went to his brother Dean's residence nearby.

He and Dean drank a box of Woodstock while sitting outside in the pleasant night. Pete stretched asleep on the couch while Dean went to bed somewhere about midnight, although he couldn't recall for sure.

Each of them was the other's excuse. They were never connected to the water in any way. Many people in the town still thought it was them. Others claimed that since the brothers would no longer receive their money, there was no point in them killing him for a few thousand dollars. They claimed that Kyle irked a lot of people and may have spoken ill of the wrong person on his way home.

The day after he was discovered, the police visited our home to speak with my father. As the fan churned the air above them, I passed them cans of lemonade from the refrigerator as they sat in the living room.

Kyle came over while we were working out there and asked Dad for money, which Dad then reported to them.

Then one of the officers laughed while shaking his head. cocked my father's head. He remarked, "You can't have been too happy to have your daughter shacked up with him.

My dad answered, "I most certainly wasn't."

For his own benefit, I wished he had lied then. not acknowledge hating the murdered boyfriend of his daughter. Your word is all you have, though, as Dad used to say. Be someone that others can rely on. He is the only person I trust more than anyone else on planet.

A decade later, the haunting lake was a story. Children who swam out there reported feeling something grasp at their legs while submerged. Kyle Lewis constantly aspired to be a prominent figure in the community, and eventually he succeeded.

Dad and I always went to the garage after supper when I came to visit. way we did when I was a child and still lived at home. Being outside with him, taking in the fluorescent light's warm glow and the concrete's odor of gasoline, as well as the way we could communicate without saying a word, was calming. There, my childhood seemed to go on forever.

We stood sipping while facing the road as Dad passed me one of the two beers he had taken from the garage fridge. At night, this area was silent. If he experienced the same pull of the water that I did, I pondered.

"Do people still believe that Kyle was slain by the Ryans?" I asked, avoiding his gaze.

I suppose so, too," he replied. "People don't talk about it much anymore."

I still recall the police car convoy passing us in the garage on the day Kyle was rescued from the lake. the solemnity of their autos, which were devoid of sirens and lights, as well as Dad's sandpaper-scraping noises. the metal's bare appearance beneath the old paint.

I had pleaded with him to stop, "Dad, they might see." He simply stopped long enough to glance at me.

Everyone is aware that we have been modifying this car, he stated. "No one will give it a second thought."

Of course, he was correct. Everyone's attention was diverted by Dean and Pete Ryan. Right-looking police officers

But for all those years later, every time I went to the lake, I couldn't help but think about it. In the dark, my dad is removing the body from his automobile. I'm not sure how he managed to do it, but he carried him over the stones without leaving a trace.

He threw him in all the way around the opposite side, where no one ever went swimming and trees grew low to the water, and it was plenty of time before he was located for the missing evidence.

I was only able to envision it because I had vowed never to talk about that night to anyone. not him at all.

The recollection I had of driving up the mountain was now deeply buried within of me.

I had the opportunity to brake but chose not to at one point. I had a chance to swerve but chose not to.

Within minutes of my calling him, my father arrived and stood by my side as we surveyed Kyle Lewis' lifeless form by the side of the road. Frogs and birds may be heard singing in the bush in the middle of the night.

He then placed his hands on my shoulders and gave me a steadying gaze.

"Listen, I'm to blame for this. I was behind the wheel. You understand that? Do you understand that you must never bring up this subject again?

Insisting that I drive his car home, take a shower, go to bed, and forget this ever occurred, he thrust his own keys into my hand. I got

My initial life—the carefree years of youth when anything seemed possible—came to an end at that precise time. The life that followed was both darker and clearer as I grew to understand who I truly was.

Who did you call on that evening?" I quizzed him. "I've always been curious.

I wasn't sure if he would respond. We fulfilled my promise to him, which I had given to him. Our promise was kept. All these years, he had kept me safe.

"Dean Ryan, I called you. I told him that I had hit someone on the road and that I needed his assistance. Me and him have a long history together. He assisted me in throwing him out there.

He cocked his head in the direction of the lake, which from here we couldn't see but could feel. 

Everyone seeing Kyle still moving about after tearing him off was horrible for him. I cleared Kyle's debt with him, and he let everyone to express their opinions.

I then considered Dean Ryan's protracted quiet. refusing to admit or deny anything. the growing void between my father and I. We are all obligated by it.

I was aware that night, as I usually was, that my father would stop at nothing to keep me safe. Because I was aware of the kind of man he was—a provider for his family. exactly as I was.

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