The boy woke up before everyone else, snuck downstairs, and started the coffee machine. He got out a cup, took down some day old bread, and got out some butter. Then he waited for the coffee to be done.
The boy didn't really drink coffee, but he made it every morning. He thought it smelled like happiness.
The coffee pot spit and sputtered. The sides sweated a little bit while the coffee dripped out. The boy took out a knife and put some butter on his bread. His nose started to wiggle, and he took a bite of his bread.
The boy treated mornings like a determined turtle. He watched them creep by. Instead of lying in bed like his siblings, he got up and paid attention to how a morning breathed life into the day, slow and steady, plodding slowly in the same direction.
Pretty soon, his mom would be up. She would come into the kitchen with half closed eyes and rub his head. She'd yawn and thank him for the coffee. She'd take the cup he set out, fill it halfway, and take a small sip. Then she'd sit in the chair next to him and ask him if he'd had any dreams.
In time, his siblings would tumble down the hallway and get out the cereal. They'd be quiet until someone got mad at something or the bus was close or they'd forgotten to do a homework. But for the moment, the boy still had this turtle of a morning to himself, the coffee bubbling and popping, bringing the house slowly to life.