Authors: Lara Henley
“I’m glad I can amuse you,” I said because he was looking at me and smiling ear to ear.
“Sorry, I thought it was funny. It looked like you were going to pee yourself!”
“I nearly did! It is pitch dark out here and you’re sneaking up on people.” I think I probably would have heard him if I wasn’t engrossed in reading the text from Misty.
“Come on. Let’s get you unloaded and into the house,” he said while grabbing the box I had dropped.
Over the next hour, my father and I carried my stuff to my room. I figured that he would start in on me about my career choice, but he didn’t. He helped me without saying too much.
“So are you happy you are out of school?” Who the hell was this man?
“Yeah, I guess. I’m eager to start at The Gallery next week.” I prepared myself for him.
“I’m glad son. You should do what you love. You should follow your path in life. Did you know I wanted to be an actor when I was younger? Your grandfather wouldn’t have it. He made me follow his job choice. I regret giving you hell about your art history major. It’s what you love.” I had no idea what to say to him. Who was this man standing before me?
“Where is all of this coming from Dad? You seem to be so different. The last time we spoke you were riding my ass. You said I had no future.” I remembered the conversation like it was yesterday. I was studying for my finals and my dad called me. He told me it was a wasted career choice. That the art industry was going downhill. He grilled me for about twenty minutes before I was able to get him off the phone.
“Well, I just woke up one morning and regretted it all Drake. I was never really there for you and Sean. Look how Sean turned out. He is twenty-five years old, working at McDonalds, and lives with us. I should have just loved you both and not pushed so hard. I am trying to get Sean to grow up, but it’s not working. Maybe you can talk to him. I am thinking of retiring early and taking some time to get to know you boys. Be the father that I should have been.” I couldn’t even speak. This was the father I always wanted. I wanted to be accepted for who I was, not what he wanted me to be.
“Dad, I have no idea what to say. I love you and I’m sure things will be ok.”
“I’m sure they will son. I just hope I’m not too late with Sean. I know that you and I will work out our differences.” My dad strolled over to me and hugged me as though he never hugged me in my life. I was seeing a brand new man.
“I’ll let you unpack. Your mother cooked. We left you a plate in the oven.” What the hell?! She cooked? She never cooked.
“Have I entered the
? Mom doesn’t cook. She has never cooked a single meal my whole life, and all of sudden she is cooking and you are retiring.” My dad just gave me a dumb-looking smile.
“What can I say, we are changing Drake. She’s taking cooking classes and I must say they are paying off. You will see.” He turned and walked out of my room, shutting the door behind him.
I sat on my bed dumbfounded. I looked around my room to see they had changed it a bit. It felt like it had been ages since I’d been here. Normally I came home for the holidays, but I guess it had been almost a year since my last visit. My room was very big by today’s standards. I had a king size bed that sat in the middle of the room. There was a walk in closet and an attached bath. Most people would think this was a master bedroom. Our house, correction my parents’ house, consisted of five bedrooms, four baths, two living areas, and a basement. I loved my room; it was my oasis. I had the walls painted a cream color and I had a black and white bedspread on my bed. My parents thought it best to change it to a brown oriental theme. I would have to hunt down my old comforter. I started to put my things away when I heard a small knock on the door. “Oh Lord, what else can they shock me with today,” I said to myself.
“Come in,” I yelled out. The door opened slowly and she was standing there.
“What are you doing here, Sara?” She looked so different. Her hair was now jet black and she seemed to have lost some weight. Had everyone in my life changed and I missed it? Her eyes were bloodshot from crying. She made it perfectly clear she never wanted to speak to me again, but now here she is. I should have known I couldn’t get rid of here that easily.
“I wanted to see you. I wanted to talk things over.” Oh now she just wants to talk after wishing me dead and calling me an asshole.
“There is nothing to talk about, Sara. We just need a break.” I was in mid-sentence when There Goes my Baby by Usher went off on my phone.
“It’s someone else isn’t it, Drake? I knew it had to be. You wouldn’t just break up with me out of the blue.” She strolled over to me as I was looking at Misty’s picture on the phone. Why was she calling? I moved the phone away when Sara came closer.
“Hey, can I call you back in a few minutes; I’m in the middle of something,” I said as I answered the phone.
“Sure. I’ll be waiting.” I ended the call. I didn’t want her to know that Sara was in the room with me.
“Who was that, Drake?” Sara’s arms were folded and she was tapping her foot.
“No one that concerns you. Listen, what we had is over. We both just need to move on.” She smirked at me and moved closer. Although she looked a bit different, she looked the same. She was still wearing the Lady Gaga perfume that would drive me nuts. She took the phone from my hands and threw it on the bed.
“What are you doing?”
“Shh, you used to like when I did this.” She pulled my face close with her hands and pressed her lips against mine. I had to admit it felt good. It felt familiar. It’d been awhile since I’d gotten any. Sara always got her way with me.
The kiss grew deeper. She pushed us onto the bed and straddled me. I ran my hands through her hair getting lost in her. She started to kiss down my neck making it feel even better.
“See, don’t you miss this? Don’t you miss us?” I actually kind of did. I was getting more and more confused by the minute.
“I’ll never hurt you, Drake, I’ll never leave you.” She was pulling at my shirt when everything came flooding back to me. I was about to make a huge mistake.
“No, Sara, we can’t do this.” I pushed her off me. “You need to go now.”
“But, Drake…..” I cut her off again.
“No, Sara, we are over. Please just go. This was a mistake.” She opened her mouth to say something, but then quickly closed it.
“You have hurt me more than you know and I will not forget it!” She stormed out and slammed the door so hard that my picture of Kyle and me surfing in Cabo fell off the dresser and broke into a million pieces.
I immediately grabbed my phone and dialed Misty back. It had to be pretty important for her to have called me. She picked up on the very first ring.
“Hey, Peaches, is everything ok?” I asked with fear in my voice.
“Yeah, I had a nightmare and I can’t sleep. I didn’t want to concern anyone in the house.” I was afraid of this happening. I knew there would be consequences from what that bastard had done.
“Was it about what happened earlier? Gosh baby. It’s entirely my fault. I wish I was there with you now.” I lay down on my back and held the phone to my ear.
“It’s not your fault that he tried to do what he did, Drake. You were there before anything really happened. I just can’t put it out of my mind is all. I wish you were here too.” She sounded so sexy in her sleepy voice.
“Baby, I can be there in less than ten minutes. I’ll hold you all night to help you sleep.” She chuckled a bit.
“I’d love that, but I don’t know how my aunt would feel about it.”
“Well in that case, how about I stay on the phone with you until you fall asleep?”
“That would be awesome. What shall we talk about? I’ve never really talked to a guy on the phone,” she answered.
“Whatever you like, I’m an open book.”
Misty and I ended up talking for hours. We didn’t get off the phone until damn near 2 a.m. She was so tired when we hung up. She had fallen asleep on the phone twice. We agreed to meet up in the afternoon, if her aunt wasn’t busy with her, so I could show her around the town. I wasn’t able to finish unpacking since it was late, so I got up and went to take a piss and a shower before bed. When I was washing my hands I noticed a red mark on my neck. “Shit a hickie!” Sara gave me a hickie. How would I explain this? It was always freaking something! This is what I got for letting her get her way. Maybe it would go away by tomorrow. Who was I kidding? I never had that much luck. I jumped in the enormous shower and quickly washed my body and readied myself for bed. As I dozed off, my last thoughts were of Misty.
I woke up to the pitter patter of little feet in the hallway. My guess was that it was Lee and Lizzy getting ready for school. I heard Lizzy ask her mother if she could wake me for breakfast. Aunt Silvia told her to let me sleep. The last thing I remembered was Drake’s sweet voice telling me goodnight. I had a terrible dream and he was kind enough to stay awake with me until I could fall asleep.
I had felt that creep’s hands on my body, I felt him getting ready to rape me. The image of his face was burned into my memory and I woke up in a cold sweat. The sweat was so bad that my sheets were completely soaked. I began sobbing into my pillow. How could I let that bastard corner me like that? I knew better than to not know my surroundings. I felt so alone and lost again. I wish Drake could’ve killed him or chopped his balls off so he couldn’t hurt anyone else. What if Drake goes to jail for beating him? I would never forgive myself, NEVER.
I got up to take a shower because just thinking about it made me feel dirty. I scrubbed and scrubbed my body until it was nearly raw. When I got out the only thing I wanted to do was curl up in a ball and die. Instead, I called Drake and he turned my mood around. He was such a sweet guy and almost too good to be true. It scared me a bit that I’d grown so attached to him so fast. I sat up in the bed and noticed that it was raining outside. Probably why I slept like the dead the second half of the night. I loved the rain. It was so soothing and I always thought it was God’s way of washing the earth clean. My mother had always said that cleanliness was next to Godliness. I stretched my arms out then went to my bag to pull some clothes out. They were a sorry excuse for clothes but they were all I had. I needed to get a job quick so I could update my wardrobe.
When I finally made my way downstairs, the house was free of all the commotion that I had heard earlier. There was a little noise coming from the kitchen. I followed the sound and walked into a kitchen that looked like it had thrown up cows. There were cows everywhere. Cow cookie jars, towels, canisters, and little cow figurines. The coffee pot was even in cow print. I saw Aunt Silvia standing there holding a coffee mug with a picture of a cow on it.
“Good morning baby girl, you sleep well?” I couldn’t even speak at first because I was still focused on the cow stuff.
“Um, yeah. I did.” I found it very weird for someone’s entire kitchen to be decked out in cow print.
“I thought we could do some shopping today. Have a girl’s day and get caught up. I got a babysitter for the kids after school, so we have all day.” I didn’t have any money for shopping right now. How would I turn her down? Plus I sort of made plans with Drake that I would like to keep. I knew I had plenty of time to hang out with him, but I missed him.
“Thanks. It’s a great thought, but I haven’t worked to save up money for shopping. The state of Texas only gave me a few dollars when I left.”
“No baby girl, I don’t expect you to pay for a thing. This is my treat. I saw you only had that one bag. Why don’t you make a list of things you need while I go get myself ready?” She began to walk past me and stopped to turn around. “You have no idea, Misty, how good it is to have you here. Don’t be modest with the list either. Write down everything you will need,” She said before continuing out of the room.
“Hey, Aunt Silvia,” I called out after her. “Where can I find a pen and paper?”
“There is some paper in the top right drawer next to the fridge,” she yelled. I walked over, opened the drawer, and there was the paper; covered in cow print, of course. I couldn’t help but to laugh. The woman was obviously obsessed with cows. I found a pen next to the pad of paper and went back to my room to begin my list. I needed to see what I had to make sure I didn’t miss anything. I emptied the contents of my bag onto the bed. I didn’t have hardly anything.
There was two pair of jeans, five t-shirts, a pair of dress slacks, one dress, a pair of heels, one blouse, and one simple black dress. I had no idea what to write down. I guess I could use some more underwear and bras, and more t-shirts and couple more dresses. I must have been lost in thought because I hadn’t noticed when my aunt walked into the room.
“Oh my, this is worse than I thought. You need everything.” She took the paper from my hand and shook it.
“This is not enough, Misty. Give me the pen.” I gave it to her and she scribbled a few things on the paper. Then she folded it and stuck it in her pocket. “I just need to powder my nose and I’ll be ready. Feel free to grab a bagel or something. I left them out on the counter.” I hadn’t thought about eating because I was still full from stuffing myself the night before. I decided to just wait for her in my room. My room; I was still in awe that I had my very own room with no attachments. I needed to text Drake to tell him I wouldn’t be able to meet with him today.
Me: Hey my aunt is taking me shopping today. So I won’t be able to see you. Maybe tomorrow?
Drake: No problem. You need to spend some time with her. I’m available anytime you want me to be. I don’t start my internship until next week.
Me: It’s a date. I can’t wait to see you.
Drake: Me either Peaches. Have fun with your aunt. Enjoy it. You deserve it.
I smiled at the text and got excited about what the day would hold. I had never been shopping before; at least that I could remember. At the house the clothes were given to us. Lucy and I would try to switch clothes because we were the same size, but we still didn’t fit in. I waited for my aunt. I passed by her room and peeked in. She looked so beautiful. Again I was conflicted because she looked exactly like my mother. She was wearing a pair of hip hugger jeans with a fitted tee that said GAP on the front. She paired it with a pair of blue Toms and a midnight blue shrug. Her hair was up in a messy ponytail and her makeup was light and flawless.