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"Who's calling me, baby girl?" He asked, taking the phone from her. He put it to his ear, but there was no voice. He frowned, then looked back at his daughter, setting the phone on the desk.
He was given a toothy grin in return and a high pitched voice declaring loudly, "Happy Memory Day, Papa!" At his blank look, she blinked and added, "With the souls who died and stuff."
"Oh, Memorial Day." America laughed, getting what his daughter meant, before sobering. "Who told you about that?"
"Uncle Mattie called." Lyonesse explained, pointing at the phone, playing with a frayed end of her blanket. "He told me, and Mr. England called, too. They said you sad today. Sorry your souls are dead."
America raised an eyebrow. "Well, yes, I am because a lot of my men have given their lives, but todays to remember them, so I'm not
Erasing her brow in a cute manner, the four-year-old nodded. "Solders, not souls." America face palmed, resisting the urge to groan. She still had a ways to go before she entered elementary school next year. "Can we go see the graves, Papa?"
He smiled slightly, looking at her, "Not this year. Little girls aren't meant to be in cemetery's, no matter what kind."
The child huffed, crossing her arms. "Mr. England said I could go!"
"He's not your dad." He replied good-naturedly, looking at the window he had own to feel the cool wind outside as he worked. "Now, either go play with your toys or I'll call Canadia. I need to finish this paper work, baby girl."
Lyonesse looked at her father with sad puppy eyes before hopping off his lap, dragging her blanket behind her dejectedly. America looked after with guilt, wanting just as much as she did to not be cooped up in this house, to be out and about. Looking down at the phone, he dialed his twin's number and placed it to his ear as he continued reading the document he was on, marking out things he thought were wrong. It picked up two rings later and his brother's soft voice floated through.
"Hey, Mattie, I need you to do something for me..."
"C'mon, Papa, c'mon!" Lyonesse cried, pulling America along the path with one hand, her other holding a large group of many different flowers to her chest, mainly forget-me-nots.
They were walking along a path in the Woodlawn National Cemetery, the closest veteran cemetery America's daughter had dragged him to. How she knew about any cemetery at all, he had to blame the Internet or his family. She was placing flowers on every grave and he himself had more than twice as many she held to give her when she ran out. Every time she placed one a the foot of tombstone, she'd give a little thank you, and he could have sworn she looked ready to cry each time.
He'd admit he himself was quite depressed, seeing all the men and women who had given their lives for him, their country. He'd also admit his heart was breaking a little the more graves they went to until he was also saying thank you, but with so much more behind it than even his daughter could understand.
When they left as the sun began to set, he looked back at all the graves and stopped walking for a moment, placing a hand of Lyonesse's shoulder. She stopped and looked up at America, who was looking back, his eyes closed, not saying anything or thinking anything, just standing there. Lyonesse looked at the flower in her hand, that last one she didn't have for a grave and held it up to her dad, tugging on his arm. He looked at her, then smiled solemnly and took the flower, placing it at the entrance to the veteran cemetery.
"Thank you, all of you, for giving your lives for not only this country, but what you believe, you will never be forgotten."
A beautiful thing to hear
Bird song and harps play in the dark air
A Lullaby for Gods
No older than thirteen
While put to bed
For a final rest
A tune will play
A Lullaby for Gods