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A great big brother

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Great big brother

Helga poured herself a cup of tea and almost took a drink when her ears picked up on a sound. It was the sound of crying. She hoped it had not been a fight among her sons, Vegard now almost ten years old while Bård had just turned seven. Even though they weren't that close in age, it was hard for even her to tell their voices apart. They were quite similar in everything but their looks, her older son dark skinned and with curly black hair, her younger son blond like herself and fair skinned.
Perhaps Bård had simply scraped his knee once again; he tended to hurt himself when he tried out some new artistic stunts to impress his bigger brother.
She made his way silently to the source of the sobs and was surprised that it was coming from her eldest son's room. It was rare for Vegard to cry.
She slightly cracked the door and glanced in. Vegard would turn ten in a little over a week, but he had always seemed very mature for his age and was very gifted in musical things.
What the mother of two saw surprised her, it was not his eldest that was crying but her younger son.
The boy had his head tucked under the eldest's chin as tears ran down his face, his cheeks burning red. He had one hand against his face, trying to wipe away the tears. The eldest glanced up at the sound of the door but said nothing, turning his full attention to his younger, blue eyed brother as he took a deep breath. “
I'm here," he whispered softly.
”I-I I'm…I'm so- sorry!" the younger boy cried.
"Shh," Vegard cooed quietly, resting one hand on top of his younger brother's head while the other rested against his back, "I'm here for you Bård."
After a long minute the eldest spoke again, very quietly he murmured, "It's not your fault."
“But, if I had been paying attention I wouldn't have-"
Bård couldn't bring himself to go on. His young child-like mind only worked on one thought: Go to big brother. He'll make it all ok. He'll make all the pain go away.
”It's not your fault, you didn't know what would happen," Vegard said. Bård trembled and pressed himself closer, "I should've known. Then I wouldn't have been in danger and you wouldn't have had to get hurt while rescuing me! I’m so stupid, why did I even climb that stupid hill with all those big rocks!"
The eldest glanced at the white bandage that encircled his left ankle.
”Does it still hurt?" the younger boy mumbled. Vegard thought for a minute, "Yes, it does still hurt."
Bård cringed and cried all the harder.
“You know what hurts the most though?"
"What?" Bård asked frantically, thinking his eldest brother might have received a more serious injury during the accident.
"Knowing you're sad."
"What?" Bård asked in confusion.
"You being hurt puts me in more pain than any wound ever could. I don’t like it when my little brother is hurt."
Then, the dam burst and all the tears came rushing out of Bård's eyes. His small heart and mind could barely comprehend it. They were brothers, he knew they loved one another but-He didn't get a chance to complete the thought before his body trembled and he clung all the tighter to his brother, soaking up all the love pouring off of him.
"I love you, big brother," Bård mumbled as his voice faded along with his mind.
"I love you too, little brother," Vegard said, lying down on his bed and pulling Bård close before covering them both with his blue quilt, "Sweet dreams Bård."
Outside, Helga gazed in with a smile as she watched her smaller son snuggle into his elder brother's hold. Her smile only grew when Vegard wrapped his arms around his little brother, hugging him and holding him close.
With a happy sigh Helga closed the door and returned to the kitchen where he finished his tea that had grown slightly cold. As he retired to his room for the night he glanced towards the eldest's room and smiled with pride while she petted her big and round belly. Vegard would be a great big brother to Bård and the baby that would join their family in a little over a month.