There were a lot of things about little Georgie Denbrough that Bill had missed. Blowing bubbles on the back porch as laughter filled the summer air. Dinosaur band-aids covering scraped knuckles and knees from one too many tumbles off their bikes, racing down their street. Yellow gumboots splashing in puddles on the way home from school.
Georgie would kick up the puddles at his big brother and cackle like a clown. Bill would only wipe away the dirty water from his face and tell Georgie to knock it off, all before breathing a laugh of his own. Even when he wanted to be mad, he couldn’t for long. His little brother brought more light to young Bill’s life than he ever knew, and the dark days of Derry only seem all the bleaker without his own little ray of sun.
Now, in those long nights when he knew the room down the hallway empty; the one with dinosaur covers and lego’s sprawled across the car-street rug untouched, Bill missed the sound of footsteps on creaky floorboards drawing nearer, a soft voice asking to come in, safe cuddles in the night to protect from the monsters that lurked in the dark.
Bill didn’t know a lot about life, but he knew about monsters and horrible things. He knew about death and loss and the strength of friendship. He knew about family and love. And, in those late, quiet hours, with wet cheeks and runny nose, he knew he missed his brother.
And he knew always would.