...Where The Heart Is

...Where The Heart Is.

He held the door open for me, and gestured for me to enter the room. I felt trapped, and I could do nothing about it. With a small sigh, I walked past him and trough the doorway. Tuomas flinched as I did, and did an awful job hiding it.

I stopped in the middle of the room and dropped my bag to the floor with a thump. Behind me, he set my two other bags down carefully. It wasn't a very big room he had given me, slightly smaller than my old room. His house wasn't particularly big, either. But as much as I hated to admit it, even to myself, I loved his house. On the outside it looked like a big cabin, but on the inside it was just like a normal house. It was decorated to be comfortable, not stylish. The place was slightly messy, but I didn't mind. The mess gave it character.

The room I'd been given was as good as empty, with a desk in the corner by the door, a bed against the opposite wall, and a built in closet with a sliding door to my right. It was bare, and I didn't like it. It was without character, in desperate need of a teenage girl's mess.

“Do you want to unpack now, or-?” he spoke, trailing off consciously. His accent was different than mine, but clearly worse. I wondered, would he make me learn Finnish, or would we always communicate in English?

I shrugged as reply, and turned my head towards the window and gazed at the snow. My eyes narrowed slightly as I did. I liked snow. It's brightness brought life and laughter to people. But after we had a month of snow in Norway, I was sick of my feet being constantly wet. And just as the snow melted away, I was brought to even colder lands. I should have known that there would be snow in Finland.

“Well, a friend of mine will be here in a little while,” he said. I turned to him, and watched him smile as I did. “I have a feeling you might want to meet him.”

I raised my eyebrows in disbelief. Unless his friend was Jesus coming to teach me how to turn water into wine, I doubted I'd be interested. I was about to open my big mouth and tell him that, when I was interrupted by the doorbell. Saved by the bell, as they say.

“That must be him,” said Tuomas as he turned on his heel and marched out of the room. I could hear his footsteps in the stairs, and the sound of the front door closing. As I sat down on the bed, I could hear someone speaking loudly in Finnish, and it sounded like they were greeting each other.

I sat on the bed, too nervous to go down and meet this friend of Tuomas. Who was he? Was it one of his bandmates? Maybe a childhood friend, or a family friend?

Then I heard it, Tuomas calling my name, telling me to come down. I wondered for a second if I should take off my shoes, but decided against it. Who knew when the last time was Tuomas cleaned his carpets. After the second call, I stood up from the bed and walked slowly. Out the bedroom door, and down the stairs.

It it didn't take much for me to understand what Tuomas motives were, when he introduced me to Tony, the long-haired man from that band. I knew he was up to something, I knew he was desperate to make me like him. It hit me like a shock wave. That was why I left as quickly as a ferret on a hot plate, using the “I'm having a look around” excuse. I took a note of their shocked facial expressions as I left. Tuomas must have had informed Tony of me.

I don't know why it was a necessity that Tuomas lived in the woods, and I don't know how long it took me before I reached the main street of the small town, but it felt like hours. Each step I took felt heavier than the one before, and in the end, my shoes felt like they were filled with sand. But even then, I didn't stop until I found a random bench by the local grocery store. It took an unnecessary long time to pull out my cellphone, and even longer to make the call; I was shaking from my feet to the top of my head.

“Hello?” came the familiar voice on the other end.

“Hi, Katrine.”

“Aina? Are you in Finland yet? How are you? Is everything okay?”

“I'm fine. We arrived in Kitee about half an hour ago. It was a six hour ride from Helsinki. Stuck with Tuomas for six hours, can you imagine?” I said, trying to laugh it off. In reality, it had been the worst period of time of my life, and that included the wait for the results of the paternity test.

“Oh.” She didn't say anything, she didn't know what to say. I understood that much. It's not often your best-friend gets a brand new father she doesn't like. You wouldn't know what to tell her, either.

“Did you get a chance to talk to him? Get to know him?”

“No. He was pretty much silent the whole time. I didn't dare to say anything to him. He didn't talk until we got to his house, when he told me he was bringing a friend over to meet me.”


“Yeah,” I said, and paused, letting out a small sigh. “It was Tony Kakko, from Sonata Arctica. He wanted to me to meet Tony Kakko! The Tony Kakko. I would have been crying, probably, if I didn't realize what Tuomas was thinking.”

“What do you mean?”

I sighed, and let a tear slip out from underneath my eyelids. “I want to come home, Katrine. To Norway! I want my parents! Not some stupid biological father who thinks he can buy me with all the famous people he knows! I don't care that he's famous, or that he's a songwriter and all that. He's not my father. My father wouldn't take me away from my life.”


“I want to come home,” I said, while drying my eyes with the sleeve of my sweater. I watched as Tuomas' car pulled up, and as he got out. I ignored him. Home is where the heart is, and my heart wasn't with him.