I live in a three-story house in the suburbs of new york city. It is pretty big for a family of four. It is cream and white and looks like a miniature version of the white house. I parked my bike in the garage and rushed into the dining room.
I walked inside and found my parents and sister sitting in the dining room on the grand dining table waiting for something so they could start eating. I guess that something's me.
"Good Evening." I said as I took my seat beside my sister.
"Good evening" my father answered.
"You're late." said my mother in a displeased tone "Were you smoking with your friends? I can see it in your eyes, they are red."
"For the last time mother, I do not smoke. I was swimming, that is why my eyes are red." I answered with a smile.
"Right." She said unconvinced "Now lettuce eat." She had to say one of her lame jokes. Steak and pasta, my favourite. I could feel my mouth water. Leyla was looking at me as if I was a mutt. When it comes to steak and pasta, I don't care what people think.
We ate quietly, with only the sound of our cutlery grazing our plates. When everyone was done Leyla excused herself, I tried to do the same but my parents told me to sit. I calmed myself down because I knew I wasn't going to be hearing good news.
"What happened at school today?" My father's deep voice resonated through out the room.
"I, uuhhmm..." I said trying to think of the best words to use in this situation.
"Answer your father faster, boy." My mother said.
I remained silent just to annoy my mother.
"Don't you test me." My mother pointed at me with her index finger. I started to get angry at the sound of my mother's voice. My mother and I didn't quite get along since I began puberty. She would just scream at me whenever I spoke because she thought I was shouting at her because my voice got deeper. I try to explain to her that I'm not shouting but she doesn't believe me. She expects me to speak formally with her and whenever I don't, there are consequences. She thinks that whenever I disagree with her choices it's a sign of rebellion.
I don't really get why she's angry right now and I don't think I want to know.
"We know you were in a fight." Mother said impatiently. "The principal called us and told us what happened. And frankly, we are very disappointed in you. You are not this...kind of person, you're not violent. Why did you have to start a fight?"
One thing I really hate about my mother, she assumes too much. She's implying that I started the fight, how could she even say those words.
"Mother I didn't start a fight."
"So you're trying to say that the principal is lying and that you didn't fight."
"I didn't say any of those things. I'm trying to say that I didn't start the fight. A few guys had pushed me, on purpose." I emphasized my last words. "They started to intentionally insult me and it broke into a fight."
"How did it break into a fight?" Father asked. Damn him for asking these questions.
"I punched one of them," There was a pause before I continued "first."
"So you admit that you started a fight." Mother said as if she had won the olympics. What an embarrassment.
"But they broke my glasses first." I said.
"That is no reason to fight, we can buy you thousands of other glasses." Mother said as if it was nothing. Another thing I hate about her, she sees everything as cheap and expendable. Nothing holds real value to her. She could travel and leave me and say that she could buy me back.
"Those are the only ones left." I replied a little louder than I should have.
"Boy, you better not use that tone again to talk to me!" My mother shouted.
I nodded back.
"Words, I want words."
"Yes mother" I sighed. This went better than I had expected. There was a long silence before father broke the ice.
"So how was the chemistry project?" He said. With those words I let out a sad sigh. I heard mother cough so she could start talking again.
"I got an A." I said looking at my empty plate. Mother's eyebrows shot up and another speech is about to take place.
"An A! That's all. What happened to the boy who only accepts A+, where did he go? We don't pay the school fees for you to get low grades. An A is not your best, and we only want the best."
"Honey, you don't have to be so harsh about it." Father said in an attempt to calm my mother. Well it was a waste of salivary amylase because it had failed.
"Don't be so harsh? Have you seen this boy? The only way to discipline him is to be harsh."
Father tried to say something but instantly gave up and just nodded. One thing about my father, he can follow my mother in a heartbeat, without a second thought,as fast as gas exchange.
"It was nice talking to you Jeremy but I have a few matters I have to deal with." Mother said as she stood up and left the room. Father followed a few minutes later and I was left alone. Not a new feeling.Wait, I'm never alone, I have thousands of bacterias and other microorganisms in my body and they keep me company 24/7.
I was lying on my bed listening to music coming from my speakers. The music was pretty loud but my room is far from anyone else's so no one minded. I was listening to A trophy father's trophy son by Sleeping with Sirens and I was singing a long.
'Father, father, tell me where have you been?
Its been hell not having you here
I've been missing you so bad
And you don't seem to care
When I go to sleep at night, you're not there
When I go to sleep at night, do you care?'
I asked myself these questions and wondered if he really cares. I barely talk to him, I only see him at the dinner table and that's it. In situations with my Father, I would wish that I was like one of the jocks; Extremely athletic, cares about soccer or cars but I had to be the nerd that can't have a civil conversation with his father that doesn't include grades. I remember that once, he took me to the park to play catch. We were playing quite well under the sun with the cool summer breeze fanning past us, until I failed to catch the ball. It hit my right eye. I cried like a girl, and instead of my father trying to cheer me up, he just called one of his friends and stayed talking on the phone until I stopped crying. My mother still cared back then so she took care of me and cheered me up. Thinking of back then just saddens me. As if on cue, I heard a knock on my door and jumped out of my bed to pause the music. No one in my house likes my songs.
It was father. I sat at the edge of the bed and stared at my pale feet. He entered and leaned against the door with his legs crossed. He cleared his throat before begining
"Your mother did not mean most of the things she said on the table." He said. I chuckled. "She's just stressed because she's going on a business trip tomorrow." My mouth fell open. How did I not know about this? As if he had heard my thoughts, he answered "You were busy with your project so we decided not to distract you."
"You always have an excuse to not tell me something." I bit back angrily. I'm only angry because they always don't tell me something and it usually ruins my plans. But this event makes me happy to no end. A period without my mom's presence is a blessing.
"Don't think about it too much"
I sighed "When is she coming back?"
"3 weeks from now."
"Is that all you have to say?" I said as I went back to lying on my bed.
He nodded and then left. I closed my eyes and started to drift away but I realised that I had forgotten to play the music so I stood and walked towards my computer. When I was about to click the play buttonm my door burst open and hit the wall. Leyla walked in breathlessly in her undies--what a shame--. She looked as if someone had died.
"What's wrong?" I asked panicking as I directed her to my bed and she sat down.
"Jeremy, you're not going to believe this" she said between gasps.
I know that something bad is going to happen.
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