Learning to Let Go

Annalise is a volleyball all-star. One who will have the ability to go to the Olympics. It's just a natural talent. At 15, two years ago, she got involved with Seth. A sweet guy, really. But she stopped focusing on volleyball. After breaking up, she swore she wouldn't date until making the Olympics. So much for that, now she's got a new crush, one that she's trying to keep hidden. It's bad enough she has one problem, but she's moving down the block to a bigger house. Why? Because three years after her father's death, her mom is ready to marry again, to Ryan Kennedy.The worst part? Annalise has trouble getting along with Dylan, Ryan's 14 year old son.

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9. Becoming a Kennedy


The wedding was at like 2 in the afternoon, and my mom and bridesmaids were all getting ready and all the stuff. Ryan was at Sports Clips getting a haircut, then going to the store, hanging with some buddies, and then getting ready, leaving me to baby-sit for the whole day.
It was around 8:00 in the morning when I heard my name getting called.
"Annalise!"
"Coming," I said and groaned, getting ready up from my comfortable position on the couch, dropping my magazine, and walking upstairs to the bathroom from which Riley was calling my name.
"What do you need?" I asked.
Riley began, her face flushed. "Well, you see, since my mom's been dead for four years, since I was eight, I never...really...learned how to...to shave... And I want to look my best for the wedding..." She sighed. "Will you teach me?"
I smiled. "Sure, that's what big sisters are for right? And here, it's really simple."
After helping her shave her shins, I left her to shower and shave her thighs. Speaking of showering, I'd better shower.
I hopped in, and twenty minutes later I was fully refreshed and began to search in my closet for the dress my mom had bought me.
I pulled it out and sighed. It was white, and at the top it was cut like the top of a heart. Then it was a lacey and went around my neck.

I slipped it on, placed my aqua flats by the door, and sat down next to Dylan.
"So, what's up?" I asked, casually.
"Nothing," he sighed, scrolling through Instagram. What was it with him and this app?
I sighed. "So, future bro, what do you like to do for fun?" I asked, punching his shoulder.
He shrugged. "Stuff."
"What kinda stuff?"
"Oh just leave me alone," he half shouted, half said.
"Okay, okay, geez."
I walked into the kitchen and grabbed an apple. Why was he so annoyed? I mean, yeah, a new family is quite scary. But seriously, Riley and Delaney aren't affected. Riley's 12, she should be mad with me. But not as mad as Dylan.
Wait...
Maybe he's mad because THEY aren't. So he has enough anger for three people... Ah. The Amazing Annalise has done it again!
What are my...other feats you ask? Uh, WELL... Ah ha! Existing, since three seconds ago!
It was finally time to go to the wedding. 
I drove my soon-to-be step-siblings down to the church. And we oohed. And we awed. And most importantly, we knocked over this huge flower pot by the front door with the most ugliest plant I had ever seen in my life growing out of it that my Aunt Petunia had picked. Seriously, if she's named after a flower wouldn't you think that she'd have a good taste in them?
Of course, we had to clean up the mess, but it was more fun then watching "Aunt P" throw a fit and shriek and her flower, or rather, eye-sore.
Once we were done, the church had never looked better. A cord had been strung over the doorway that had leaves, pink, purple, blue, and yellow flowers attached to it. The after party would be outside in the garden with the most beautiful trees you'd ever seen in your life.
The organ began playing and my mother walked in, dressed in a white, flowy gown with a mile long bridal train (it was really long). She walked down, Ryan took her hand, "to have and to hold," blah blah blah. The after party- plain, boring, exactly like all the others. Oh, look, Ryan's mother caught the bouquet. Big surprise. That woman wins everything. My wedding, will be a million times bigger and better, so the least to say is, it will AT LEAST be MILDLY interesting. Gosh, I'm so bored.
The next day, Ryan and Mom left for Hawaii for their honey moon. Original, eh?
It was in the month that they were gone was when I learned what being a Kennedy was really like.
"Family Game Time! It's 8:00!" Riley ran around the house, shouting.
"It's what?!" I asked.
"Uh, Family Game Time, come on!" Delaney squeaked.
"What the heeee-ck is Family Game Time?" I asked.
"Uh, when the whole family plays games together, duh?" Dylan said, having appeared from his room.
"What are we playing?"
"Sorry!!!" Delaney screamed. "Then Twister!"
And that was how the first night alone with them went.
"It's 5:30, DINNER TIME!" Dylan screeched.
"But, I normally eat around 6..."
"DINNER! DINNER! DINNER!" Delaney screamed.
I groaned and began calling Pizza Hut.
The next day:
"COME ON, EVERY ONE!" Dylan screamed. "FAMILY VIDEO GAMES! The male tradition!"
I just fell face-first into my pillow.
The next day, the fourth day they were away, was the worst. "ANNALISE!" Delaney screamed. "IT'S MEATLOAF MONDAY!"
I hate Mondays even more now, and I didn't even think it was possible.
I.
Can't.
Stand.
Meatloaf.
I'd rather barf, much less make it.
I'm starting to dislike being a Kennedy.
Finally, on Tuesday, I could escape the dinner times and the game time because I had a date with Derek, then a date with volleyball practice.
Thank my stars.

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