Skinny Summer

I was fifteen back then, and it was summer. No worries about school or mean girls. I went on a road trip with my dad. He was always a good father, but he didn't know me. No one ever knew me. I lived a life in my head. A girl was haunting me in every reflection.
I felt insane, but I had to hide it. I couldn't tell my dad.

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1. Crazy idea

One, two, three, four…

I had to count in my head. I didn’t want my dad to hear me.

The sun was about to come up. Another night without sleep.

 

I heard something. Dad was coming; he probably wanted to wake me up. I went to bed, pretended like I had slept. I closed my eyes and covered my mouth with the duvet, in case I’d start laughing. I’m a horrible actress.

He knocked twice on the door, and then opened it slowly.

“Rise and shine, darling. You have a long day ahead of you”, he said with a smile on his lips.

I stretched like I was exhausted.

“I’ll be there in a minute”, I said and pretended to yawn.

“I’ll make some breakfast”, he said. He closed the door after him, and as soon as I heard him walk downstairs, I began. Crunches, crunches, crunches.

“Breakfast’s ready! Hurry up!” dad shouted from the kitchen. I picked out a yellow dress with a brown, small belt. I wore a red lipstick and a brown hat. I grabbed my bag and my coat and went downstairs.

“I made waffles with syrup”, dad said. He handed me a plate, but I said:

“Actually, I’m not feeling well...”

Dad made a strange face.

“Are you sure? That’s the third time this week. Maybe we should see a doctor?”

I panicked a little bit inside.

“No, I’m fine. I’m just a bit… filled up at the moment. It’ll go away soon”, I said.

Dad grinned.

“Alright, darling. If you say so”, he said and kissed my forehead.

It was summer vacation, so I didn’t have to worry about school and homework… or my none-existing friends. I was a loner, as they said.

Nobody at school wanted to talk to me, and I had no idea why. I asked them if they wanted to talk about it and tell me if I had done something wrong, but they didn’t want to. I just wished I could forget about them that summer.

 

“Tell me, what are your plans? Are you going to see any friends?”

My dad never really knew me.

“Dad, I don’t have any friends…” I said.

He grinned, again.

“Pff, of course you have! What about the girls at school?”
“You mean the girls who call me names, throw food at me and talk about me behind my bag?”

He didn’t answer.

“Look, I have an idea. You and I spending summer on the road”, he said and smiled.

Dad was very childish, but in a good way. He was always happy and ready to go on adventures.

“Are you sure? We haven’t used the auto camper in ages”, I said.

“We can drive to Denmark, and just live on the road for the rest of the summer. What do you say?”

We lived in Sweden, so driving to Denmark was no problem. If you don't know, it’s a small country in Scandinavia.

“Sure, sound’s great”, I answered. I was still kind of surprised. It would cost a fortune! But hey, who’d say no to going on vacation?

“Go upstairs and pack your bags. We’re leaving tomorrow morning”, he said.

I hugged him. I ran back upstairs and packed all my things.

I had the most random dad in the world. He’d always get these crazy ideas. He was the best though.

 


48, 49, 50…

My stomach was already burning. I took a deep breath and held it.

I almost got a heart attack, when dad knocked on the door! I hadn’t even heard him on the stairs!
“Good morning, princess! Get up; we’re leaving in two hours!”

I got up. It didn’t seem like he noticed. I put on some random pants and a random shirt. Luckily they matched! As he walked downstairs, he shouted:
“What do you want for breakfast?”
“Quickly, think!” I said to myself.

“Eh… Didn’t you hear? I already ate!”

He got quiet.

“You did?” he asked.

“Eh… yeah…”

“Alright then!”

That was close... I went to the bathroom to brush my teeth and do my makeup.

Dad was putting the bags in the auto camper. I hurt him struggling. The bags sounded very heavy but I knew that if I tried to help him, he’d feel less manly, as he calls it.

It always took a long time for me to put on makeup. I was always distracted by the girl in the mirror.

“Hey”, she said. She had a half smile and her eyes were shining.

“What do you want from me?” I asked.

She stroked her hair and looked at me. She always did that. She looked at me from top to toe, just making sure I looked acceptable.

“Did you remember to do the crunches?” she asked.

 “I did”, I answered shyly.

She gave me a bad look.

“How many?”

I looked down and said:

“200.” I lied and hoped she didn’t realize it.

“Good. Tomorrow, it’s 300”, she said.

She then disappeared. I shook my head, got ready for the trip and went outside.

 

I walked over to the auto camper. Dad was still packing it with luggage.

“Are we ready to go?” I asked.

“Almost, honey”, he said.

The sun was burning me like boiling water on my skin. I felt dizzy and tired. My sight was blurry and my knees were shaking. My stomach was growling so loud, it hurt. “Make it stop”, I said to myself.

Dad put the last bag in the auto camper, closed the door and said:

“Alright, we’re ready to go! Hop in!”

I went into the auto camper, and sat on the couch.

My dad sat on the front seat and started driving. Next stop; somewhere that’s not home.

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