“Al look you got a paint stain on the table there. Try and clean it.”, mom said.

“I am sorry but I can’t clean it.”, I said and both mom and you asked me why.

“Nobody will clean that.”, I said and looked at my nails then.

Silence. That’s very unlikely of me, I know. I never refuse anyone for anything.

“Okay we won’t. But why?”, mom asked again.

“There’s a story behind it. Angel was learning sketching from me. She was painting the white rose and in frustration she started painting full page white with the largest brush she got. That’s how the stain got there. Each stain has a story. We won’t clean any.”, I said.

When I looked up I saw mom with her jaw-dropped and you smiling broad.

“You collect, stains!?!“, mom asked a bit uncomfortable.

“Sort of. Yes. Aye aye.”, I said. “The time when Angel dropped mayo in the car while laughing hard at the joke about the man crossing the road. The time she was too sleepy and accidentally tipped the plate over and all ketchup was on the sheets. The time when Angel got jumpscared while watching Scream and the Iced tea was all over the carpet. I am not afraid to say that I collect stains.”, I said.

You can running over to me and hugged me tightly. “I love you.”, you said.

“I love you too Angel “, I said and I heard mom say, “You’re crazy Al!”


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