Thirteen the Book English Maurice Hennevelt .pdf
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Author: Maurice Hennevelt | Adwise - Your Digital Brain
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This download is free of charge. However, if you like my book, a small
donation will be very much appreciated. Part of all donations received will
be donated to the KiKa Foundation in the Netherlands. (Children Cancerfree).
Donations can be sent to:
Maurice Hennevelt Beheer B.V. (Netherlands)
IBAN NL14 INGB 0006 6437 83
All rights reserved. No part of this book
may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval
system or transmitted in any form or by
any means without the prior written
permission of the author and publishers,
except by a reviewer who may quote
brief passages in a review to be printed in
a newspaper, magazine or journal.
All characters in this book are
fictitious, and any resemblance to real
persons, living or dead, is coincidental.
The phone rang hard and noisily, breaking the silence of the
house where Cas and his father have lived for several years.
Cas was in his bed and was awakened by the ringing sound
that shook him up. After the phone broke the silence for the
fourth time, Cas became irritated. However, he wanted to fall
back on his bed. He looked at the clock. It was after ten
o’clock. His father would surely be home by now. He listened
attentively. The phone rang again. Then, the ringing stopped.
It was replaced by his father’s voice. He was indeed already
home. Cas sighed.
Cas turned himself on his back and looked at the ceiling.
He and his father have now been living in the house for five
years. It was an old house, but Cas loved it. It was a house with
many rooms. Because Cas only lived with his father, he had
several rooms entirely to his own disposal. In addition to his
own bedroom, which Cas and his father had painted in four
different colors, there were three rooms where he often stayed.
Cas had therefore given the rooms names. He had made one
room his study, one room his ‘playroom,’ and one room for his
The study was like his bedroom, painted in four colors blue
and consisted of a high bookcase filled with all sorts of books, a
desk, a chair and a large beanbag chair with a reading lamp above
it. Of course the room was not specially decorated as a study for
Cas but since his father was not usually home Cas took it anyway
as “his” room. After school, he often spent an hour in the room
working on his homework.
The room that Cas called his playroom was painted in several
different colors. The walls were canary yellow, the door was
blue, and the ceiling was white mixed with red. And
although the room looked very messy with the bright colors,
Cas was fine with it. He had hung a dart board, put down a
table football, and board games. He loved board games. In
particular, strategic games such as Risk and Monopoly among
his preferences. He regularly challenged his friends and he
wins in almost every game.
But his favorite room was the multimedia room. The room,
whose four walls were painted in off-white, had a computer, a
widescreen TV, a stereo set, a DVD player, and a game console.
Cas, who in recent years had become quite adept in connecting
all the equipment, had connected all the electronics with wires.
That way he could play games on the computer on the widescreen
TV. The sound of his games through the speakers of the stereo
was in pure Dolby sound. It always blew him away. The brilliant
effect made everything more realistic.
“Dad, listen...” he had said to him a few times, “it’s as if
you’re in the game! Cool huh?”
His father thought it was not a problem that Cas has
renamed many of the rooms in the house. He had a busy task
wherein he was away from home a lot, and he barely used the
extra room in the house. In addition, he was happy that Cas
was able to enjoy himself in this way.
Cas was often home alone. His mother, Barbara, had died in a
car accident when Cas was only seven years old. She worked in
the local hospital behind the front desk and, one evening, was hit
by a motorist who had driven through a red traffic light. The
ambulance arrived quickly on the spot but it had already been too
late. She died on the way to the hospital. Not long after the death
of his mother, they moved to this street. Their previous home, the
one where they had been living in for three years before the
accident, just did not feel like home anymore. Despite the move,
it marked the definitive end of a very happy period. They did not
regret it though. His father, a few months
after the accident, stayed at home. He largely restored their
new home and, with the help of Cas, all the rooms in their
“new” house were painted in the colors Cas liked. And even
though his father was away from home a lot now for his work,
he had the feeling that this was a strong foundation for the
It was quiet in the house. Apparently, the phone call ended.
Cas thought of going down the street to greet his father but the
soft creaking up the stairs (a fact he associated as his father’s
creaking shoes) made him think otherwise. The sound of the
footsteps was now clearly audible. Cas saw the door of his
bedroom gently swing open. In the doorway, his father stood
and peered intently into the darkness to see if his son was still
awake. Cas turned his nightlight on and the room brightened.
He saw startled his father. He Cas asked if he woke him by
“I was already awake when I hear you, Dad,” Cas reassured
His father came into the room.
“I doubt it…” his father laughed with relief and sat on the
edge of his bed. “I just got home,” he continued. “You know
how it is, eh? Had a busy day. “
Cas nodded. He knew that. He even laughed a little. He
found it funny in some way that his father, who spent all day
speaking to important people, struggled to explain his son in a
relaxed manner why he was late home.
“How was your day?” His father asked him, genuinely
“Too busy,” Cas said. And he recalled his day in his mind.
He had a long day at school. The transition from primary to
secondary school was heavier than he had imagined. Although
Cas had already proven that he was a good learned in
elementary school, his experience was very new to him.
That day he had gone back home after school through the
supermarket. Although he and his father usually go there to
shop for groceries during the weekends, Cas decided to pick
some extra groceries that day. It was a pleasant necessity for
Cas. In a few hours, Cas would leave his life as a twelve year
old forever behind and he’d go on through as a thirteen year
old for the next year. Thirteen sounded more mature than
twelve, or so he thought.
His father had seen the messages upon entry on the counter
and wondered aloud what Cas intended with all those extra
“Dad!” He said it in a somewhat wisecracking though
mellow tone. “I can give them to Aunt Elise and my friends
who are having tough times, right?”
His father looked at him in silence. He was astonished and
somewhat tried to hide his terrified grimace.
“Aunt Elise,” the thought shot through his father’s head.
“And friends?” Slowly it dawned on him. “Good heavens!
How could I forget it? Cas’ birthday is tomorrow!”
He should have known. Aunt Elise only came twice a year
to visit. She lived on the other side of the country, but she came
faithfully every year to celebrate both their birthdays. Cas saw
that his father’s face began to turn red.
“You have not forgotten, right Dad?” Cas asked with in a
tone of disbelief, as if he expected his father was perhaps
joking. “Tell me you’ve not forgotten,” he added.
“No, of course not,” his father stammered. He must at least
come up with an explanation. “I remember your birthday,” then
he said. “It’s your gift!” It surprised him how quickly he now
recovered. He felt the warmth and the redness leaving his cheeks.
“I need some time to arrange for your gift,” he said again, more
confidently. “That’s all. Tomorrow, when I come home from
work, I will make sure I’ll be back on time. We’ll celebrate your
thirteenth birthday, my boy! You get everything
fixed for tomorrow afternoon. Then all will be well. Now, let’s
go to sleep first!”
His father stood up, walked a few big steps out of the
bedroom, and closed the door. He heard Cas turn his nightlight
off. He hurried downstairs and put his hand on his forehead. How
could he forgotten Cas’ birthday? He got so absorbed in his work
again that he forgot the few special days in the life of his son he
could be involved in. He sighed and felt guilty. Fortunately, he
realized he could still recover. Tomorrow. he would go home on
time. Cas would, in any case, that he actually forgot. He only has
to buy an impressive gift for his son; a gift that would prove that
it was chosen with care and interest. But how could he, at such
short notice? He decided to browse the Internet if it offered a
quick solution so he quickly got on his computer. The computer
boot-up lasted for over an eternity. It was already pretty late, and
he still had to surprise his son tomorrow with a gift. No sooner
was he able to get the modem to connect with the Internet, he
entered the first key words in the search engine. ‘Birthday’ Enter.
Countless sites. ‘Gift.” Enter. Even more sites. ‘Birthday Gift.’
He was chased by the rushed feeling of haste in his eyes. He
thought of a keyword. It must be special, but there were a lot of
words shooting through his head. What could be a special gift for
a special thirteen year old boy? Last year he gifted Cas with Lego.
Even then he knew it was not the right gift for the boy. Cas had
the case not even opened the set yet.
New keywords but again: “Special + thirteen + gift… Enter.
Innumerable sites were found. Gadgets, CDs, travel, books...
Books! That’s it! Books!
His eye fell on a link that was high up the page. In a number
of bold keywords, he clicked: www.dertienjaar.nl; special book;
thirteen year olds; order now; tomorrow at home…
Interestingly enough. He decided to open the page and
found a simple, dark red colored website that had very little
information. The text was difficult to read because the black
color of the letters poorly contrasted against the dark
background. The website was not only remarkably simple; it
also had no more than the following description:
Looking for a special gift for a thirteen year
old? Order our very relevant book NOW!
To order now, click HERE. (Next day delivery)
It is certainly appropriate and readily available, he
reassured himself. Thinking to have found some peace of
mind, he clicked the order button. Nothing happened. He
clicked on it again. And again. And again. Still nothing.
“Damn!” he swore at the computer. He clicked the order
button again for a few more times, frustrated at the computer.
The next day, Cas was awakened by the bright sunlight that
entered his room after his father moved the sheaf of his curtain
to the side.
“Congratulations boy! May you live long! Want me to sing
for you? Long may you live, long may you live... “
“Pa! I just woke up,” Cas managed to say with a hoarse
voice. He looked at the clock. Ten to seven. “You may sing
and then you should leave. I want to have my gift already,” he
joked, quite awake.
“Your gift won’t get here until tonight,” replied his father.
“It’s very special and I should have something for it,” he lied
easily in a manner that surprised him. “So you’ll really have to
wait. But it is very special, though!” And then he left the room
“Yes, yes,” thought Cas, “it will be just as special as the
Lego I got last year.” He turned his head to the corner of the
room where, in a half-open cupboard drawer, the tight box of
Legos stuck out. Cas sighed. “I’m not a little kid anymore.”
When Cas, after a refreshing shower, came down, he saw
that his father had already left the driveway. It wasn’t soon
before the big car disappeared out of sight.
“Well, this has been very special birthday,” he muttered
softly to himself. He grabbed a plate and smeared a sandwich
for himself. He put it on the table and lit a birthday candle for
as a joke.
“Hurray.” He said, blew out the candle, and took a bite. “Long
may I live…” he sang with his mouth full and took another bite.
After eating the last piece of his sandwich was stuffed in
his mouth, he stood up. He looked at the clock. Then he stood
up, grabbed his bag that contained his school supplies, his coat
from the rack, and then he walked, choking on the last piece
of bread that tried to get away. With jacket and backpack, he
walked toward the barn to get his bike out. He quickly pulled
his bike out of the shed and put it against the fence that almost
seemed like it was about to collapse under the weight of his
“Almost like porridge. Almost,” he muttered as he walked
back to the house.
The fence was old and has been needing replacement in the
last several years. The poles to which the wooden boards were
attached to at the bottom were now more or less rotted and could
barely lift the weight of the timber. The fence’s current state was
the fault of the neighbor. When Cas had moved into the house
with his father, they tried to get a neighbor to install a new fence
several times already. The neighbor invariably replied that he the
rotting fence still did fine. Because they were new in the
neighborhood and his father did not immediately
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