- Harry AnderS -
Dutch psychotherapist and alternative writer
'Born to be a King'
- by Harry AnderS -
An inspirational fantasy
A retired psychotherapist meets a severely burnt little Gypsy boy, and takes him into his house.
The boy turns out to be the Heir to the Throne.
This emotional rollercoaster hints at past lives, spirit helpers, karma, the Power of Love, and contains several practical psychological concepts.
The story is written by a retired Dutch psychotherapist, living in The Netherlands, and specialized in supporting troubled children.
Chapter 2 ended with:
I heard Jack's voice, sounding warm and understanding, seemingly coming from within my head:
"Do you understand now?"
I nodded, and tears started to stream down my face.
I felt completely overwhelmed by so much love, so much compassion...
"You and that little boy are needing each other. Don't be afraid; you didn't make a mistake, and he will come back. Just listen to your heart, and love him..."
Jack's voice drifted off; and the light vanished, leaving me on the couch crying my heart out.
Chapter 3. A talk with John's parents, and taking my little soul mate home.
The doorbell rang, harshly bringing me back to reality.
What time was it? Who would try to pay me a visit at this time in the evening?
I stumbled to the front door and opened it, to let a very tense and nervous looking John enter the house.
He looked at me with a desperate face and tears in his eyes:
"May I have a talk with you, please?"
"Of course, come in and be my guest."
I went to the living room, followed by John who nearly stumbled over his own feet.
I sat down on my couch, and invitingly patted the empty place next to me.
However, John threw himself onto my lap, and desperately clamped onto my chest.
He started to cry and talk at the same time, and I could hardly understand what he was saying...
"Harry doesn't believe me any more!" he sobbed into my chest,
"I told him you didn't freak out on him, but he doesn't listen and keeps on crying..."
"Shush, shush," I tried to comfort him, slowly cradling my desperate friend,
"Now calm down, and try to tell me what happened..."
I was sure I had found some tissues in one of the boxes, but couldn't remember where I had left them...
I made a mental note, to buy at least an extra wagonload of them as soon as possible!
I offered John my own handkerchief, and he blew his nose in it before giving it back.
After a moment, he pulled himself together and started to tell me what had happened:
Soon after John promised to bring me little Harry, the children gathered and went to John's house.
They tried to assure Harry that I was a nice and friendly man, and that I had left them alone on the porch solely because I remembered my own burnt little brother and was too sad.
John relayed everything I had told him about Joshie's and my ordeal; and Harry listened open-mouthed and with tears in his eyes.
He was still very afraid of being rejected once I really saw his face; but, after a lot of persuading, he hesitantly followed his friends to my house, albeit pushed a bit by a motherly Marrie...
Everything went as they had planned. The children were happy to see we connected so well; and that I accepted their little friend and even cuddled him.
That is, until little Harry suddenly panicked and ran away, leaving all of us at a loss...
The children finally found their little friend in John's bedroom, lying on his bed, crying and burying his face in a pillow.
They asked him what had happened, but he refused to talk about it and cried louder and louder.
They persisted; until, at last, Harry screamed that he had lost EVERYTHING and wanted to be DEAD!
John was very shocked, took his little brother in his arms, and nearly begged him to tell them why...
At last, little Harry surrendered, and sobbingly told them why he was so desperate:
He had joined his friends, still feeling very nervous and still being very afraid that Big Harry would be too disgusted by seeing his so awfully burnt face...
To his surprise, Big Harry invited everybody in as if he didn't expect to see anything special, and he seemed to be really kind.
Suddenly, Big Harry kneeled down and asked him for a hug; and the man's friendly eyes told him he could trust this man and that the man really cared for him.
He left Marrie, still feeling a bit hesitantly; but Big Harry spontaneously took him in his arms and started to cuddle him!
All his hesitations melted away, and he felt wonderful. Big Harry accepted him, like his big friend Jack had accepted him from the very beginning...
He could trust Big Harry! He had found a new Big Friend!
He let himself melt into his new big friend, feeling totally safe and happy...
After a moment, Big Harry kissed his forehead, as if they had known each other for ages.
Now, he felt all mushy inside, and he was sure this man was going to love him at least as much as Jack had done!
He wanted to tell Big Harry how he was feeling, and made the biggest mistake of his life...
He kissed his new big friend back...
Big Harry's arms suddenly stiffened, he looked shocked, and he waited until those ugly lips would go away from his mouth...
He didn't answer the kiss, because he was too disgusted by those terrible things that suddenly touched his lips...
Big Harry lifted him off the floor, carried him to the table, and sat him onto his lap without looking at him or saying a word...
His new friend even turned him around, away from his face, so that he didn't have to look at those awful scars and those ugly red marks and those terribly shriveled lips...
John collapsed and clamped himself onto my chest; again sobbing desperately.
Again, I took my newly found friend in my arms and slowly cradled him.
I felt so guilty...
Why hadn't I ASKED little Harry what he wanted, instead of assuming I was doing the right thing?
Now everything I did had been misunderstood, and our first meeting had gone awfully wrong...
What a mess, and what a bunch of misunderstandings!
How could I ever explain this to that poor boy, supposing he would have the courage to come back?
There was another thing, that struck me like a lightning bolt:
I was taking on an enormous lot of responsibilities, by letting this so vulnerable child into my life!
This kid wasn't just a poor little boy; but he was a severely damaged child, most likely on his inside as well!
I had to be very careful with my boy, and I had to start right NOW.
I cradled John some more, until his sobs lessened and he pulled himself together again.
Finally, he and I dried our eyes, looking for another dry corner of my handkerchief.
Where had I left those tissues...
We looked at each other, feeling a bit bashful, and both of us started to grin at the same time:
"You are still a crybaby."
"Yeah, I certainly am, and so are you..."
"Is your little brother already in bed?"
"I think he will still be awake. He was waiting for me, wanting to hear everything about you... but my father told me to be right back, so I think I have to go now..."
"What do you think, shall I accompany you?" I asked him, hesitating...
"Oh yes, that would be wonderful!"
John hopped off my lap, and together we went to the kitchen to wash our faces.
Again, we started to wrestle to try to have a bit more of the same towel...
Suddenly, we looked at each other, bent over, and kissed. Just a small peck, on each other's lips; but it felt wonderful, as if we were sealing our friendship!
Fortunately, I seemed to lose my uneasiness about kissing...
Both of us started to smile, feeling like we just had an important conversation without words.
"Thank you, my friend, I think I needed that!" I told him, ruffling his hair.
"Thank you too. I like being with you, and I wish YOU were my dad!" he answered, showing a smile from ear to ear.
Together we left my house, to visit my so desolate little Gypsy boy...
John took my hand, and piloted me to his house; being five doors away on the same street.
He pointed me to the fourth house in the row:
"That's where Thomas and Chrissy are living. We are neighbors. Harry always walks to them and to Jack through the backyards."
He took the key out of his pocket, opened the door, and we entered his house.
Soft music was playing in the background, and the house lightly smelled of incense. It made me feel welcome.
John took me into the dimly lighted living room...
Little Harry had stretched out on the floor, playing some game of cards with Marrie and Mark.
He looked surprised, and I felt his bright blue eyes piercing right into my soul.
Again, I could read him like an open book; and what I saw warmed my heart.
His eyes showed a hint of fear, but also a lot of pride, and again that same deep longing.
He didn't look away, but held my gaze...
"Hi, my friend!" I told him, looking into his beautiful eyes,
"It's good to see you again. I wanted to return the kiss you offered me this afternoon..."
I kneeled down, and stretched my arms out towards him...
I could feel his eyes burn into me. I felt them search my soul for the truth...
Could he really trust me? Did I really accept him?
I stretched my arms out even more, inviting him for a hug.
Slowly, his beautiful blue eyes brightened, and his face lit up.
He stood up, and hesitantly approached me...
All at once, he was a vulnerable little boy, desperately seeking for love...
"I'm sorry...," he mumbled.
He leapt into my arms, buried his face into my chest, threw his small arms around my neck, and started to cry.
Words can't even begin to describe what I felt, when that little boy so trustfully committed himself to me.
I felt an entire mixture, of fatherly feelings, deep love, responsibility, friendship, and pure joy, all in one...
I also had another feeling, as if little Harry and I had known each other for ages, and now were reunited...
I was absolutely sure we had known each other before, most likely in several of our past lives...
We were dear friends, kindred souls, blood brothers, maybe even father and son.
We belonged to each other!
Never in my life, have I been crying as much as I was doing this day.
This time, little Harry was crying with me, but our mingled tears were tears of pure joy.
Finally, we had found each other, and we were together again!
We rubbed our faces together, looked into each other's eyes, grinned like crazy, and melted into each other.
Again, we looked into each other's eyes, now nearly drowning in each other's warmth and love.
I touched his distorted lips with mine, and kissed them.
Immediately, he kissed me back, eagerly and without any fear.
Now we started to give each other small pecks on the lips; and it felt wonderful, like coming home, like renewing our friendship.
He felt like a son, a dear friend, and my very best buddy, all in one.
I saw in his eyes that he recognized me too, and he was just as happy as I was.
I was sure I had found my soul mate, and he certainly had found his!
After a long time, I carefully disentangled my boy from my arms, stood up, and looked around...
Mark was looking at us open-mouthed, still lying on the floor. Did I read some jealousy in his eyes?
Marrie was sitting next to Mark; also looking at us. She had tears in her eyes, and wiped them with the back of her hand.
John was still standing next to us. He looked happy, while he too wiped his eyes, furtively, with a sleeve of his shirt...
On the couch sat a dark-haired woman with brown eyes, patiently waiting for us.
She looked at us with tears in her eyes, now and then wiping them with her handkerchief.
She looked at little Harry and me, and her eyes radiated love and understanding.
In an armchair, a tall man with hazel eyes and light brownish hair nervously smoked a cigarette.
His eyes drifted from little Harry to me, to his wife, to his children, and back to little Harry and me.
He clearly was not at ease with the situation...
I put an arm around little Harry; and immediately he let himself melt into me.
Together, we approached the woman, and I apologized:
"Sorry for invading like this, but I thought it was the best thing I could do to help our friend over here."
I ruffled his hair, and he looked up at me with adoration in his eyes, melting into me even further.
"Please, call me Trudy," the woman answered with a faint smile,
"and I am very pleased you are here! We were at a loss today. We didn't know what to do to help Harry out of his desperation...
"Even the children couldn't reach him any more. They talked and talked to him, but he didn't listen and kept on crying...
"There was even a moment when I was angry with you, for bringing him into this situation."
"That's not fair! This wasn't Big Harry's fault!" John interrupted her,
"Nobody could imagine what Harry was thinking, or why he was running away like that!"
His eyes shot daggers at his mother, and he balled his fists in frustration...
Suddenly, little Harry pushed my arm away, left me, and straightened his shoulders.
He faced John with astonishing pride in his posture, as if he were of Royal Blood:
"No, John, you can't possibly know why I ran away like that. You are not a Gypsy boy with a burnt body and a creepy face. They are never making fun of you, and they don't point at you in the streets. You don't have to hide your face, and you don't have to sneak to your friends in the dark or through the backyards.
"You can't possible know what I am feeling day after day, and why I am so shy and so frightened; but of course you can't help it. You just can't feel my pain and my fears..."
He put his small arms around John's waist, and hugged him.
Then, he turned around, determinedly took my arm, and put it back around his shoulders...
At that moment, I could FEEL his powers! Wow, what a boy he was! Did I ever think I had to protect HIM?
He looked up at me, and I looked deep into his beautiful blue eyes.
I saw a lot of pride in them, but also a vulnerable little boy asking for approval:
'Did I do the right thing?'
I smiled at him, and ruffled his hair.
Immediately, his eyes lit up again, and it felt like we had a conversation without words.
We understood each other!
"Boys, girl, it's time to go to bed!" the man in the armchair announced, impatiently looking at the clock on the wall,
"Come on, upstairs, all of you! NOW!"
Little Harry hesitantly left my arm, looking at me with a longing in his eyes:
"Please, will you take me home? I want to live with you!"
"Yes, Dad," John immediately added,
"That's a good idea. Now I can have my room back!"
John looked at me with some hesitancy...
Did I understand the hidden meaning behind his words?
Of course I did!
I winked at him, and his face brightened with relief. We understood each other!
"Well..." Dad answered, again impatiently looking at the clock,
"I am not sure. I want to have a talk with this man first, and then we will see."
"Will you wake me up when you are going home?" little Harry asked me, with a hint of fear in his voice.
"Yes, I promise!" I answered and smiled at my boy, sending him my love.
Reluctantly, he followed the other children out of the room, looking back longingly...
"Sorry, but I think we haven't been introduced yet," Dad told me with a lot of sarcasm in his voice,
"However, MY name is Eric."
He extended his hand reluctantly, and I shook it.
His handshake did feel quite the opposite of a 'firm grip'...
I had to be very careful with this man. He would do everything to 'prove he's right', even when he was wrong...
For a moment, I thought about how, for heaven's sake, a man like this had been able to father a warm and loving boy like John...
Eric motioned me to a nearby armchair:
"Do you want coffee?"
"Yes, please, with no milk and two lumps of sugar."
Trudy went to the kitchen to get us some coffee; and Eric started to question me...
We had a very unpleasant one-way conversation.
Eric started to tell me that his wife and he had been inflicted with that troubled Gypsy boy without his consent...
Two years ago, his children found their neighbor, Jack, lying on the ground next to his car and sniveling like a toddler.
They asked his wife to have a look; and she brought him here as a stray puppy, behaving as a child, still sniveling, and looking numb.
Jack seemed to be very charmed with a little boy, who had been hospitalized for a couple of months and now was delivered to an orphanage.
HE didn't approve at all, but his wife had insisted on taking the boy into their custody so that he could live with that Jack...
Now, the boy was back in his custody; and, of course, from now on HE had to decide what would happen to his boy.
Living with Jack had been okay, because the boy and Jack seemed to know each other, and he already had his own room in Jack's house.
However, I was a total stranger to the boy, and he didn't know me; and, of course, people would talk again...
To be honest, he certainly didn't approve of all that cuddling and all that kissing between me, a total stranger, and his boy!
Who was I? Was I married? Did I have children of my own? What did I want from his boy?
I was totally perplexed, and nearly forgot to breathe from a suddenly building up anger...
What kind of an interrogation was this?
Who was this man, who dared to talk about MY little soul mate like this?
I thought about leaving the house and slamming the door... but then I certainly would lose my newly found friends, and that was the last thing I wanted...
I started to defend myself, desperately trying to calm down, and nervously looking for the right words:
"I am a retired psychotherapist; and I have been married, but divorced a few years ago. I have two grown-up daughters of my own, and I..."
Suddenly, Trudy stormed into the room, and placed herself in between her husband and me.
She looked at Eric furiously, and barked at him:
"I think that is enough for now! Our John likes this man. In fact, our John thinks the world of him! And you should KNOW that John is a very good judge of character...
"Unlike you, my dear! You always immediately start to criticize and belittle people, but I have had enough of that. I trust this man, our John trusts him, and Harry already adores him!
"Harry is free to go and live with this man if he wants; and our other children are allowed to meet him whenever they want. And from now on, YOU shut up!"
She sat herself down onto the couch, like a queen, and smiled broadly:
"Go get him, he is yours. I am sure you and he are belonging to each other. I can see it in your eyes. That boy needs you, and I think you will need that boy as well...
"Tomorrow we will help you with setting up his old room, and my children will help you carry his belongings. Now go..."
She pointed to the stairs in the hallway:
"His room is upstairs, second door to the left; and his clothes are on his chair. Do you need help with dressing?"
I shook my head, feeling rather shaken, and slowly climbed the stairs to John's room...
The room was too dark to be able to see much, so I clicked the lights on.
First, I saw John, sleeping soundly, having his head just above the blankets and snoring lightly.
Then, I saw my little soul mate, lying on his back, with his so damaged face peacefully resting on a pillow, showing a faint smile.
He had thrown his blankets halfway back; and I was severely shocked at the look of his devastated upper body...
My little brother was burnt on his face, his throat, and his hands; but this boy seemed to be burnt everywhere...
Raw stripes were showing on his chest in at least three different colors, together with scars of operations and a lot of wild flesh.
A couple of ribs were showing through his skin, and everything seemed to be strained and too tight.
I could hardly imagine how many operations this boy would need in the future...
I lifted the blankets away, and again I was shocked when I saw the rest of his body.
His belly seemed to be less affected by the fire, but his right hip was an ugly mixture of wild flesh and scars in all different colors.
His little pecker looked wrinkled, also damaged by the fire.
His left leg looked less affected, but his right leg was a real mess of wild flesh and scars.
I nearly started to cry at the terrible sight.
What a drama!
I wiped my eyes, and tenderly caressed his so distorted face:
"Harry... here I am... I promised to wake you up..."
He yawned, opened his eyes, rubbed them with the backs of his hands, and squinted at me.
A smile from ear to ear told me he recognized me, and he stretched out and put his arms around my neck.
I lifted him onto my lap, this time carefully letting him face me...
I kissed his forehead, and he puckered his lips for a quick kiss on the mouth.
Of course, I happily obliged...
"Am I going to live with you now?" he asked, yawning again.
"That is up to you. Do you really want to live with me?" I answered, hoping he would say yes...
"Of course, silly!" he answered, again showing a smile from ear to ear.
He jumped off my lap towards his clothes, and started to dress.
He donned his clothes with a little help from me, and he talked.
He told me he slept naked because his scars started to itch in bed. Jack sometimes massaged him with soothing oil and that helped, but John didn't know where the bottle was.
He could only wear underwear that was two sizes too big, but he was already used to that. Normal underwear was itching too much, and whenever possible he preferred to walk around naked.
He hated to sleep alone, so he used to sleep in John's bed. Tonight, he knew he was going to live with me, and he didn't want to wake up John, so this time he decided to sleep in his own bed.
All his belongings were stowed away since he had to share John's room two months ago; but, of course, now he could have his own room back in Jack's house...
Oops, sorry, now he could have his own room back in MY house.
I had never heard him so talkative, and I was delighted! My boy seemed to be a bright conversationalist.
I asked him a couple of questions, and he thought them carefully over first, before coming back with an intelligent and direct answer.
Now he started to ask me his own questions...
Was I married, where was my wife, where were my children living, did I have any plans to remarry, what did I do for a living, did I have enough money to maintain my new house, did I have any plans for the future?
My boy seemed to be a bright and very clever boy.
I lifted him onto my shoulders; and together we went downstairs, giggling and trying to tickle each other.
Eric seemed to have left the room; and Trudy was still sitting on the couch, with a sad face and teary eyes.
I put little Harry down, and he went to her and consolingly put his small arms around her neck.
She hugged him, and told him he was a very lucky boy.
"Yes, I certainly am!" he answered, tenderly returning her hug,
"But now I am sleepy, and I want to go home."
I thanked Trudy for trusting me, and again lifted little Harry onto my shoulders.
With his feet dangling free, and his hands clamping around the top of my head, I took him to my house.
Oops, sorry, I took him to OUR house.
Thank you for reading the next chapter of my story 'Born to be a King'.
Enjoy the reading, and help us make our world to be a better place!
I would LOVE to receive your comments.
Please, write me an email now and then...
Harry AnderS, Dutch psychotherapist and alternative writer.