My dad growled as I walked through the door. I ignored him and went straight to my room. I sat on my bed and stared at all of the trophies on my shelf. I stood up and ran my finger over the engravings.
"They mean nothing. Just memories of a boy who tried to please his father." I sighed to myself.
My bedroom door opened and I quickly looked behind me. Dad was standing in the doorway.
"Looking at the trophies? Too bad you don't have a future anymore." Dad smirked.
"I can't believe I thought you ever cared about me." I sighed and left my room.
Dad followed me into the hallway.
"Stop right there, mister." He growled.
I looked back at him.
"How dare you say that I didn't care about you?! I wanted you to achieve greatness! I wanted you to succeed!" He shouted.
"It's not always about what you want, dad. You're planning out a future that I don't want to live. You're making life so difficult for me that I don't even want to be alive. It's not always about grades and practicing. I want to do something with my life, yes, but I always want to have fun. The bottom line is it shouldn't all be up to you." I growled, a tear rolling down my cheek. He stepped forward but I ran out of the front door.
I tripped over a stick and fell down on the ground.
"You okay there, Spaz?" I heard.
I looked up to see Cora.
"Hi. I said.
She laughed and helped me up.
"So, what happened?" She asked.
"Family issues." I sighed.
"Oh, I've been there." She said.
"Our family is a tad bit crazy."
"Crazy? How so?" I asked.
"Mom is a drug dealer, dad is an alcoholic, and I can't see them anymore. I'm living with my aunt and uncle." She sighed.
"Yeah. I miss them a lot, but they just don't know how to take care of anybody or to be parents."
We sat on a bench and looked at the sky. Birds were chirping and the sun was going down.
"Do you think anything gets better, or do we just learn to deal with the pain better?" I asked and looked at her.
"I wish I knew the answer to that." She sighed.
"Oh, by the way, my birthday is in a few weeks. Would you like to come?"
"Sure." I smiled.
She smiled and looked straight ahead.
"What are your parents names anyways? Just curious." I said.
"Christa and Bill." She said.
She gave me an invitation and stood up.
"I should get going. Night, Spaz." She laughed.
"Night, Cora." I smirked and she walked away.
I went home and laid awake, thinking of what to get her. Her words kept repeating themselves in my head and I quickly sat up and grabbed my phone.
"Christa and Bill Dowry." I said to myself as I typed in their names. Their address came up and it was just a little walk away.
"Here we go." I sighed and sneaked out of the window.
I stood on their doorstep, my heart beating out of my chest.
I rang the doorbell and a man answered the door, a gun in his hand.
He sighed of relief and put the gun down.
"He's not the police, we're fine, honey!" He said.
He looked at me.
"Who are you?" He growled.
"Hi, I'm your Daughter, Cora's, friend. She really misses you and her birthday is coming up and I know she'd be happy if you decided to stop by." I stuttered.
"Kid, I don't know who you are, but we don't care about Cora, okay? Get off of our property." He said and was about to shut the door but I blocked it with my foot.
"Sir, with all due respect, would you maybe reconsider?"
"No, kid. She's a tub of shit that caused us nothing but trouble." He hissed.
I paused and glared at him.
"What did you just call her?"
"Tub of shit." He smirked.
"Are you kidding me?! She misses you even after all the crap you put her through! She missed you, even when you're selling drugs and drinking lives away! She'a an amazing girl and you know what? You don't deserve her as a daughter!" I shouted.
"Take that back!" He hissed.
"You can't take back the truth. And you know what else you won't be able to take back? Her childhood. Her smiles. Her laughter. Her voice. You can't get any of that back. All that is gone because you guys had to ruin joy for her. She doesn't show it but she's hurting, thanks to you." I growled and walked away.
A few weeks passed and I arrived at Cora's house. I had an envelope in my hand, I thought she could use something other than a cheap, store bought gift.
She let me in and I smiled.
We went int he backyard to see everything set up. I put the envelope on the gift table and we sat on a bench and talked while everyone else was chatting and carrying on.
"I'm glad you came." She smiled.
"I wouldn't miss it."
Soon, it was time to open gifts. I saw people giving her jewelry and clothes. I sighed when she picked up my envelope. I wanted to give her something expensive, but I couldn't. In my mind, I just imagined all the people at the party laughing at me and how pathetic I was.
She opened it and letters spilled out. She looked at me in confusion.
"I couldn't afford a good gift, so I wrote you letters to read when you're upset and I know it's a pretty lame gift, but I still hope you like it." I sighed.
She walked over to me and hugged me.
"I love it."
I held her tight.
At the end of the party, after everyone left, Cora and me sat together in the backyard at the picnic table.
"I tried to get your parents to come. I know you missed them... I just feel bad that I couldn't get them to come." I sighed.
"You did, what?"
"I know I shouldn't have eavesdropped but you were so upset and I know you're putting on this brave face, but you're falling apart. I can tell."
She looked at me.
"I know what it's like." I said.
"How did you know?" She asked.
"Your scars, the crack in your voice when you were talking about them, the sad look in your eyes."
She looked at me and burst into tears.
"Cora... I'm sorry... I didn't mean to upset you-"
"Why does this happen to me? Why couldn't they love me?" She cried.
I rubbed her back.
"It'll be okay. If they don't want to be in your life, it's on them. You're amazing and just because they don't see that doesn't mean something is wrong with you."
She leaned on my shoulder and cried. I put my arm around her and rubbed her back.
"Shh... it'll be okay." I whispered.
After a while, she stopped crying, but she was still leaning on my shoulder.
"Are you okay?" I asked.
"For now, yes. Please don't go, though." She said.
"I wasn't going to." I said and held her close.