“Right, here we go then. Time for breakfast!”
Josh opened the door to the café and let Moses go first.
“Come on son, find yourself a table while I order”
Moses stumbled across the room, passing by the chairs with the seats parallel to his head. The diners across the room looked down and cooed at his cute squashed up face and curly brown hair.
“You’re sitting there then? I’ll be with you in a sec son”
Moses sat in the chair right by the wall menu showing the specials and Josh went to the back of the café for the till.
“How you doing Antonio? Happy Saturday to you”
Antonio stretched his hand over the till, “My friend, how are you? Happy Saturday to you as well. Is that your boy you keep telling me about? Good to finally see him. How can I help?”
“That’s him my friend, ain’t he cute! Give me the usual and give him just sausage and eggs. His marge would go crazy if I give him the works. Think he’s a bit too small for that anyway!”
“He’s well behaved, I’ll give you that. A lot of kids who come here would be running around but he went straight to a chair. You want your usual coffee and toast too then? With the extra…”
“…Extra slice, Good man. I’ll be over there Antonio. He’s a good’un, I’ll tell you that”
Josh sat down with Moses and smiled. “I always dreamed of these days. Me and you, you and me just doing things together. Your mum wanted to take you away from me, but I’ve had the last laugh”
Moses stared at his dad, noticing his beaming smile and he smiled back while placing his right hand into his mouth.
“Don’t do that Moses. Go on… take it out” Moses complied with the instruction
Antonio came over with plates for the two of them.
“Here’s your coffee and toast Josh. I’ll bring your food over in a second, and little man, here’s your sausage and egg”
“Thank you Antonio” replied Josh as Antonio brought over his food
“My pleasure. Enjoy!” and he walked back to the counter
“Dig in son. Do you need help?”
Moses grabbed the knife and fork in front of him and began to cut the sausage into tiny pieces for himself as Josh dug straight into his breakfast
“When you reach my age..” Josh said chewing, “you’ll eat this with no problem” as he tucked into his hash browns
Moses stared at his dad’s plate with wonder. The different of colours all across his plate; there were beans in red tomato sauce, burnt black mushrooms, runny fried eggs oozing white and yellow all over, more red with tomatoes, a black pudding, golden hash browns, crispy bacon and overcooked sausages covered in brown sauce.
“Dad,” Moses said, “your plate is the worst rainbow I’ve ever saw”
Josh started laughing, “Not everything in this life is as good as it looks son. Some things are worse than they look and some things are better. This is definitely better! Take my word for it. Now eat your food. You gotta be back with your mum this afternoon. I’ve only got you for a few hours.”
They both ate their food in silence until their plates were finished.
“I love you son” Josh said as Antonio came over and collected their plates
“How was that?” Antonio asked
“Antonio, you get better every week. Doubt Moses here will ever forget his first time eating here.”
Antonio laughed, “Bon a savoir monsieur”
“I thought you was Italian, not French”
“Same way I speak English, I speak French.”
They both laughed as Moses stared at them remotely. Josh paid Antonio and told him to keep the change
“Come on then son, let’s go to the park, say goodbye to Antonio”
Moses waved as they exited their chair and the café. The weather was bright and the sky was clear
“The weather was sunny and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. We went to the park afterwards and he put me on the swing. We were there for what felt like eternity, there were no other people. It was just us. And after everything my mum was doing, just the fact we were together for just these few hours felt like everything. It was the first time we’d spent together. And it was when we were leaving the park for him to go and drop me off that was when it happened. That was when they killed my father. These Asian gang kids came out of nowhere and they attacked my dad for what I think was his phone. I was 6. What was I to do? A man is there with his son and they decided to attack him, my dad was no wimp so he thought back. In front of me. But there was 5 of them and 1 of him. I remember his face as he fell backwards and his head hit the floor. For years, I went to counsellor after counsellor telling them that I could hear the sound echo in my head during the nights. Ringing like church bells. The police didn’t come until 45 minutes later. They had long gone. I was pushed into a bush by one of them, I can still smell his aftershave to this day. My dad had died by the time I got out of the bush. For years, I was angry. My mum with no one to play tug of war with over who I was to get kicked around to, gave up and put me into care. And that’s where I was until I was 18 and they decided to let me go. And that was when I found my way to this church. Offering homeless people a place to sleep. And while I was here, that was how I heard the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. Pastor Stevens over there, would sometimes just get to know us and he told me the second night… it was the second night right.. that he could see I’d been through a lot but he told me then, that the Lord was with me. And I don’t know why, but I started to believe him. I had no other hopes at the time, I mean, I just believed in the words. You laugh but I’m being serious. And so I took a bible off of him and I spent a whole night just reading the Gospel of John. And by the time I reached John 8 I decided I was a Christian. Let me tell you, all of the fear, anger, resentment, bitterness towards my Dad’s killers was gone. I knew they were serving hard time but for years I wanted more to happen to them. For them to suffer how I suffered. And by the time I finished John, knowing what Jesus did for us, who am I to hold it against them? I lost a father, but the Lord lost a son. So I knew He could relate with me and that’s why if you hear him this day calling out to you, do not harden your heart”
The crowd roared into a massive cheer and applause was heard all over the auditorium. Shouts of hallelujah, praise God and wild woo’s could be heard in all pockets of the room as Moses stood there with tears in his eyes, contemplating God’s grace