Coming Back to Julie

Ronan does not believe in ghosts, but he does believe in tradegys. Especially his fathers. Ronan's mom died giving birth to his stillborn sister, and his dad has never been the same. No longer is his dad the "jolly ol' Monty" he used to be. In a wild chace to get away from it all, Ronan's dad Monty moves them to the middle of nowhere, with it's own tradegy to tell. And when fate crosses Julie and Ronan, the small town will never be the same. Because Ronan is just who Julie is waiting for.

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3. Chapter 2

It had only been about five minutes, and I was already bored. After awkwardly leaving the house, I had passes nobody except a neighbor of ours, who I have already dubbed as the crazy cat woman. She had been sitting under the grey sky in a lawn chair, wearing a dress meant for a younger person. Her hair was up in a messy bun, which might have been okay on a teenage girl with color still in her hair, but the old lady’s white hair did not cut it.

The creepiest thing was her cat, an old peach fuzz cat, with its hair sticking up. Its sullen brown eyes were emotionless and blank, as the cat just sat next to the lawn chair. When I passed her, all I got was a matching stare from the both of them, and a huff from the woman when I turned to say hello (You know, the new neighbor hospitality and all the stuff).

Besides that, there was nobody else out. Nobody else was outside that I could tell, but I swear I was hearing the faint drown of a mower. My feet were starting to hurt, and I seriously needed by headphones, so I could distract myself from the utter boringness which was this town.

With about a fifteen-minute walk later I reached the heart of the town. It was where the convenience store was, and the small clothing store was. I had given much more he the clothing store when we had first got here, and it was more of a hand-me-down-nothing-ever-new-comes-in kind of store. The sign it had was at least intact, and proudly told that the shop was “Young Mae’s Outlet and Seamstress Center”. Abbreviated underneath was the letters “YMOSC”, which was just so nobody had to call the entire store its long flashy name.

I went to the pharmacy next, which was called “Smith and Sons Pharmacy”. The faded red barn look did nothing to help the store at all. Going inside, I met a young man bored out of his mind. He wore a red shirt, with the pharmacy’s name printed on the side. His brown hair was mess, sticking up in a half-ass job of a Mohawk. The bags under his eyes were clearly visible. He looked frankly awful. His blue eyes just skimmed me, before he sighed greatly and tried to fix his slumped position.

I went straight to the aisle where usually some sort of food was (meaning not candy. There is nothing wrong with candy, but having some at around eight in the morning was not just gonna do it for me). I picked up the pickled flavored Pringles. I was literally starving, and Pringles were on my “I must eat now or die” list.

I had the money that my dad had given me, and handed it over to the cashier. His nametag read Zack. He rang up my Pringles, clicking the buttons on the old register. 

“You are new here.” He said, not bothering to look me in the eye, as the register seemed to need his full concentration. I mean, it is not the hard to work a register; it’s made so even idiots could use them.

“Yeah…” I answered slowly, not really knowing how to pursue a conversation with him.

“So, umm, is this your family’s pharmacy?”

“Yeah, has been forever. People just call the place Sons’ now, since there is nothing else here that even claims to resemble a pharmacy. What your name, new meat?”

Besides the niggling part of my brain that protested against the name of “New meat” I answered him.

“Ronan, Ronan Lucian.”

“Zack. Here is your stuff.”

Zack gave me back my Pringles, and pushed the change he had so diligently counted across the counter. Not knowing what to do with my hand full of Pringles, I continued to see if there was anything else.

I passed the bakery, called “Annie’s Bake Shoppe”, which had some resemblance to a modern day bakery.  Then I passed the place I had first thought was a grocery and was actually a plant shop called “Edmunds Roses”, which also sold mowers and lawn care products. Then there was town hall/police station/ firehouse, which was one building meant to look like many.

And the worst part is that I had ALREADY FINISHED MY PRINGLES! And I forgot gum. So now, I have pickle Pringles breath. Great. I had met almost nobody except crazy cat lady, and Zack, and I feared that there was no one here my age. I most likely shouldn’t meet anybody with my pickle breath, but the world is strange.

And mean, very mean, as I met someone on my walk back along the road across from the firehouse etc. coming out from an appalling purple house was a girl, with dirty blonde hair kept in a messy French braid. It was what she was screaming that got me interested.

“That’s it you little fuckers! I am fucking DONE! You hear me you little shit heads! DONE! Clean your own disgusting crap up!” She stomped down angrily, her sandals slapping the white steps. Whipping out an old phone, she dialed a number quickly.

“Yah, Josh, I’m going over your house… I don’t give a flying fuck if you are at church, I’ll be there when you get back…”

 When she finally noticed me standing at the bottom, her grey eyes widened in surprise.

“Um, yah, call you back Josh… there’s some strange guy standing at my steps looking at me if I am wearing a clown costume…”

We were starring at each other for a good five minutes before she said something

“So, um, hi?”

“Hi” I replied, like a total idiot, stupid…

It was then she burst out laughing, and I started too. It was just too damn hilarious.

“I’m Antonia, people call me Tony,” She wheezed in between her laughter

“Ronan” I replied. It was another three or four minutes until we calmed ourselves down.

“What was that all about?” I asked, referring to her swears when she stormed out.

“I live with five brothers, three older, two younger. They do not clean up after themselves, at all. It’s so fucking annoying. Then when things are a mess, the twins Brendon and Brett blame me. I don’t know how my mother deals.”

I couldn’t contain my laughter. Here was a girl, with five brothers, and lives in a bright purple house.

“Why is your house bright purple?”

“Mother dearests wished to make the house more feminine, as the only girls are her and I, and I seriously lack in the femininity department.”

I laughed and Tony chuckled along. We were interrupted by a football flying out through one of the windows. A boy that looked a lot like Tony was yelling out the window, with a matching boy egging him on. Both there sandy curls were a mess, their faces overwhelmed with freckles, just like Tony’s.

“Come back here Tony! You never finished cleaning!”

“Clean your own damn shit Brendon! You too Brett!” Tony flipped both boys off, before grabbing hold of my arm and marching down the street.

------------------------------------------------

“I hope you realized this, but I’m new here and have no idea where we are going.” I told Tony, who had been leading me through a path in the woods now for ten minutes.

“Josh lives in the woods with his dad, dipshit. Weren’t you stalking outside my house and hear me when I said I was going to Josh’s?”

“You think I have any clue were ‘Josh’ lives? Isn’t he had church anyways?”

“HA! So you were listening to my phone conversation!” said Tony victoriously, and I even wondered how out of everything she got that she was right.

Tony left the conversation at that, leading me deeper into the woods. When we finally broke through the trees, I realized we came to a large wood house, faded with age. An old broken truck sat in the garage, and the bushes grew out of control. Random piles of junk cluttered every space, to the point of you could go barely go one-step without tripping on a piece of metal buried by leaves.

“What’s up with all this junk?” I asked Tony, dodging yet another sharp looking contraption half buried in the rotting leaves.

“Josh’s dad is a hoarder, or as he persists a collector of fine metal thingies and antiques. It’s all up in the backyard, and the whole house too, except for Josh’s room and the kitchen. His dad got divorced a while back because of it, and he really loved the woman. She had a rule about keeping the kitchen clean, and that is why it is.”

Tony explained, waving her arms in wide sweeping gestures to the whole property. Reaching in this dying flowerpot hung next to the wall, Tony pulled out a spare key and opened the door, throwing it haplessly back into the pot. Tony was right when she said the place was cluttered. Nic knacks filled every niche and cranny, balancing precariously on top of one another. There was a clear path cutting to each room, and you could see some parts of the floor, and almost none of the wall.

I had already tried to see this little toy car, almost sending a stack of one’s just like it tumbling down. Tony had laughed, saying the only one who could move anything without the entire master balancing act to fail was Josh’s dad.

We made ourselves comfortable in the clean kitchen, and Tony was munching happily on a piece of banana bread she found on the counter. Just then a truck could be heard struggling into the gravel driveway.

“I don’t understand dad, why don’t you get a new truck!’ Said an aggravated person, who I am assuming is Josh.

“Old Bessie! Why, she is the car of the world! Never a finer specimen!” Said a man, who I am assuming was josh’s dad. I was not expecting what was going to happen next.

Let us just say Josh and his dad were black (not to be racist or anything, but that I how I am referring to their coloring. African American is too wordy and not accurate anymore). I was expecting a big white dude with a very nice white beard growing, not a clean shaving tall black dude with only a little chub on him.

Josh was another story. His black hair was braided against his scalp, and he was on the heavier side of life. He wore a pair of square glasses, and an annoyed expression.

“Tony, goddamn you women! I told you I was at Church! How the hell did you even find the key?”

“MY ninja skill-edge, that’s how” replied Tony, smiling crookedly at Josh. Peering over his glasses Josh noticed me sitting in the opposite chair from Tony, not really knowing what to do.

“Eh, who the hell are you?” Before I could even introduce myself, Tony answered for me.

“He was the stalker starring at me like I was in a clown suit, remember?”

“Names Ronan, and I was starring at you normally, your clothing is not bright nor colorful enough to resemble a clown costume. I’m new to town” I directed this to Tony and Josh.

“Nice to meet you! Names Phil!” said Josh’s dad, or now should I say Phil.

I really didn’t know what to do know, but Josh luckily saved me.

“I’m heading up to my room. I know you’ll follow me eventually, and can’t lock you out since Tony knows how to pick locks. Come on up.”

If I thought that Josh’s halls were bad, the stairs were worst. Going up was a mix of jumping and diving from clutter on the floor and attached to the walls. When we finally made it to Josh’s room, it was awkward. Tony seemed oblivious to the awkwardness, talking a million miles per hour. When Josh finally spoke, it was not what I was expecting.

“Dude, your breath smells like funky pickles”

Again, I should have gotten gum.

-------------------------------------------------

I had ended up staying at Josh’s house longer than expected, and went home with Tony when her mom called her back. I had no idea how to make it back to my house, and was more like Tony was walking me home.

I had to think it was at least five, as Tony said she had to go back for supper. Walking back, I remembered what Ms. Lawrence had told me just that morning.

“Hey Tony, have you heard about the ghost girl person, in front of the pharmacy.”

She looked at me curiously from underneath a stray part of her braid, which resembled more of a ponytail now.

“How you here about that?” She asked.

“The salesperson who sold my dad the house explained it”

“Really now? Did she explain that only original members of the town, like the ones alive when she was are the only ones that can see her?”

“You don’t think I’m from here?” I asked her, letting a little sarcasm trip into my voice.

“Ah, sarcasm, my lovely friend, how great you are. No, Ronan, you are nothing like the people of this town. Hell, I haven’t left this town ever. I can see her, so can Josh. Some people, especially most newbie’s, however rare, can’t. You can try though. She comes out at sunset, can’t really miss her, she has a spirit-y glow on her.”

“I’ll search for someone with a ‘spirit-y glow then”

“I detect sarcasm there, young newbie,” Said Tony. We continued our banter until we reached Tony’s awful purple house.

“Good luck seeing the ghost girl Ronan!” screamed Tony at her door.

“See you later Tony!” I called back. I heard her laughter before the slamming of the door.

Now I was off to find Julie.

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