It just occurred to me how young we were, Trapper and me. When we first got here we acted like a couple of kids just out of med school. It's like we saw each other again and took up where we left off, all those years ago.
I think Trapper will always be young. Despite his wife, his kids, the war.
We clung to our youth so hard we choked the life out of it. With the booze, the women, the games.
I never told anyone this, and I don't even know if it's true, but I'm glad he left when he did. I just wish he'd taken me with him. Then we could both never grow up.
But he left, and I did. And I put away childish things, almost.
BJ's very much the young man. He doesn't drink the way we did. He's completely devoted to his family, the way we were devoted to staying young.
I followed his example and grew up a little too. In his light the things me and Trapper did look childish, irresponsible. The booze is still there. So are the women.
BJ will never be an old man. It's in his smile, his pranks and that stupid moustache. He stays a young man while his family grows up without him. While I grow up around him.
I've got some grey hair now, the kind of salt and pepper look that some people find respectable. I'm not ready for respectable yet. Reckless, yes. Rude, raucous, rambunctious even ridiculous! But...
It really has been a lifetime over here, Dad. I don't think you'll recognise the old man who comes home to you.
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