Summer 17 (Ch. 1)

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Summer 17 (Ch. 1)

Post by B.D.__Wether on Sun Feb 06, 2011 5:43 pm

Summer 17 By aj

Chapter One

“Finally,” was what her face read. I would have laughed, except I felt as if the whole bag of Sour Patch Kids I had just downed might come back up. Y’know, karma.
It had taken nearly an hour for Lyn and Nicole to get me into my short white party dress which I normally wore when I was going to a party. Like, fun ones.
I thought of fun parties. I thought I was going to one tonight with Kyle Herrington (how many times do you hear that last name?!). But really I was going to dinner with my ex-boyfriend\ future step brother and step dad, which my mom, Nicole, had decided for me.
I scratched my ankle. My silver wedges were twisting my skin and my bra strap was a wee bit twisted. My head felt numb and my eyes felt stuffed, like when they blew that puff of air in your eye at the eye doctor. I was vaguely aware of my cell phone tucked away in my purse, every ten seconds beeping and whining from text-overload. Funny, how had I ever gotten friends? It’s not like I ever talked to them.
Tap tap.
I glanced over to the manicured hand on my shoulder. Oh, right.
In the splotches of light rushing by the limo’s window, Nicole’s faintly Asian almond shaped face set the scene (ha, good pun) for her wide hazel eyes and smooth shiny black hair. Her face was young and primped, but somehow the crease lines in her forehead made her look at least five years older. Her lips were a fine line between panic breakdown and too much yelling at actors all day. I rubbed my temple self-consciously, still studying her crease lines.
“Keelie, do I look OK?” She choked, ready to faint. Lyn, across the way, flicked her equally as perfect hazel eyes over her COSMO! magazine to meet mine. Just say “Yes. You look perfect.” She warned silently. My sister’s thin face dictated she knew what I’d rather say.
I pouted mentally. God, I know Nicole’s only a quarter Japanese, but why didn’t I get any of the glory? And why hadn’t I ever asked her this question? Wasn’t that the way it was supposed to be; the daughter being nervous about a date and asking her mother for guidance?
“Yeah, you look fine.” I stuck out my tongue at Marilyn in defeated irony. Nicole swung around to examine herself further in the window. Hopefully, I didn’t have any crease lines.
The driver pulled out in front of the Muy Grande Casino Lounge. Lyn and I had agreed previously that whoever named it needed to be more inventive. It sounds like one of those crap Mexican restaurants that were really opened by some American loser who failed college.
As the valet rushed around, we stepped dramatically out of the black Hummer stretch (piece of crap, really). Nicole handed them the money as if they had the Black Plague, which couldn’t be such a bad guess. Lyn, the only socially competent of the three of us, smiled and thanked them.
Nicole grabbed her daughter’s wrists and excitedly pulled them inside. As if we couldn’t walk on our own. Scoff; my sugar high’s not that bad yet.
I felt rotten slightly. Nicole had no idea I was about to run off to only-I-know where and she couldn’t expect it. The feeling didn’t last long. How was I supposed to play sibling with I guy I no doubt kissed with more than once? At least spare me the summer before the wedding. When she found that out, I’ll talk. Just thinking of Jake was purely annoying (although he really is cute). How was supposed to stand him forever?
We stepped into the lounge, and I was surprised to find absolutely no cameras and even less people. I glanced at Lyn, who raised an eyebrow. Was this place going under? I laughed at the thought of it; a struggling actor taking his highly successful director\boss\fiancé and new family out to dinner at a ‘muy’ failing restaurant. Ha.
Suddenly breaking my evil thoughts, someone enveloped me in a huge bear hug from behind. When I regained the breath I lost and successfully kept my Sour Kids down, I closed my eyes and pretended to hug my attacker back awkwardly. I would, after all, have to get used to it.
But why do I feel like I’m in a soap opera?
“Michael!” Nicole screamed like a toddler whose favorite toy had been returned to it. She buried herself in his tall suited figure. Though his dark brown hair was graying at the ends, he still managed to look young, like my mom. Well, at least they were both pretending.
As Mike bent down to wrap his large arms around poor little Lyn, there was a muffled grunt behind my own dizzy self.
“How ‘bout me?” I heard the prodding sarcasm behind my ears. I turned and met Jake’s big blue eyes. His broad, overly white smile seemed to gather and direct light into my eyes as he moved closer. His short brownish gold hair glinted softly, bristling slightly as the fan blew it airily. His skin was dark from a spring spent at the beach, but rough from his soccer obsession. I had to admit; he was still insanely good looking. But his eyes were a little darker, his smile a bit more pained.
“Haven’t seen you for a while,” I spluttered, avoiding his fake hug. He was slightly confused by this, seeing as we’ve been seeing each other all school year, and, since school ended last week for summer, I’d been flirting with his soccer mate Kameron Dougherty. I don’t think he enjoyed that much.
I quickly corrected myself, “I mean, all dressed up nice.”
“You should know, right?” he hissed, reminding me that we were going to be the most awkward siblings the world’s ever seen. I frowned.
“Yeah, it’s a big wardrobe change since then,” I snapped back. Why couldn’t he just let it go like I had? I was so over it. Admit we weren’t meant for each other. I mean, I know I wouldn’t have broken up with him unless I didn’t feel it anymore. Right? Why did I always think I was lying? I wasn’t, right? Was I?
“At least I’ve improved,” he returned. I glared at him. I’d received the Best Comebacks unofficial award from my classmates. I could own him in a second. No more Miss Nice Keelie…
“Come on, kids, can we put the claws away?” Nicole begged, still hanging from the hip at Michael’s side. I rolled my eyes. Suddenly she had started saying that stupid “put the claws away” phrase when she learned about her oriental tiger movie. Or martial arts. Whatever.
“Just one night?”
I glanced at Jake sullenly. He returned my gaze stoically. I tried not to meet her own glare, but I could see Lyn borrowing into my skull, advising me to shut up. I considered this. If we were going to live together, and not be married, Jake and I had to get along somehow. And anyway, if I wanted to sneak away to Maine without a second thought of my mother, I sort of had to fly under the radar.
“OK,” I spat grudgingly, sourly flicking my eyes to the astonished Jake. “One night. It is summer.”
We trodded to our table. But before we sat, I hooked Lyn in the arm and whispered to her hidden grin, “I have the entire summer to think of how I’ll torture the rest of his puny life.”

* O O *


“I have to take a shower and get to bed,” complained Lyn, laying on my bed and looking through my diary. Nicole and Michael had ordered Jake, Lyn and I to drive ourselves home while they went out. That was preferable, I agreed, because I didn’t want to see our parents smooching or nothing like that. Ooh. Don’t think of it.
“Your diary is boring anyway.” She sat up to look down at my hazel eyes.
Even from my seat on the floor where I packed, I could see the legendary eyes that matched Nicole’s and my own eerily. We were basically the same child; pale white skin that wouldn’t tan no matter how much time in the sun we spent. Big full eyes and glossy eyes. Puffy pink lips and oddly clefted chins. Thin but not skinny, her thighs were a bit leaner, but I choose to ignore this fatality. We were clones.
We were nominated Best Looking Sisterhood at the high school the past two years. I think we should have gotten boring. Only one thing was different; I have my mom’s hair. It’s so dark a brown, often it is mistaken for black. Marilyn’s is like her namesake’s and our father’s: close to platinum blonde. People often don’t believe we’re really related, just because of our hair. But if you take away our floaty locks, we look near identical. Nicole even said that when she gave birth to Lyn, she got deja vu. She didn’t know how lucky she was to have dad’s hair.
“How are you gonna pull this off anyway? Do really expect Mom to not call you when you’re in Maine?” Lyn cut in on my envious thoughts to rip her hair off and glue it on my own skull. She picked at her bottom lip, as she often did. She pretended to study my oh-so-boring diary, but I could see the worried quiver in her expression.
“Already thought it over,” I proclaimed proudly. She waited for a response. “Y’know Diana? My roommate?” I sat up, bunching my hair in an elastic. She nodded. “She’s gonna be me.”
Lyn snickered. “Yeah, to what extent? Mom knows how you sound on the phone.”
I shrugged. “She can say she has a stuffed nose. Whatever, Diana’s smart. She’ll figure something out. Besides, it’s not like Mom will even be paying attention enough to listen to me anyway. She’s rooming with Mike; she’ll have other things to talk about.” I ended sarcastically. Lyn rolled her eyes and sat up.
“Whatever you want. But if you get in trouble, I was not in on it, OK?” I nodded. She smiled weakly, flung the diary back on the bed and stepped out of my room. I went back to packing my clothes.
I knew it was probably hard for Lyn to see her family go off in all directions while she stayed home and took photography and modeling classes. But I had to do this. I had to go to Maine again. I couldn’t never go back. If Nicole and Lyn wanted to believe life was all good with out Dad, then they can go ahead. But, I decided as I stuffed a bag of Sour Patches and gummy worms in the back pocket, I couldn’t not see him again. His grave, at least. The house.
I snapped my fingers. That’s what I was forgetting! I needed directions…
I marched down the hall to the office. It was dark and had a gross new car smell that was either there because no one uses it or to make me sick. I clicked on the table lamp and booted up the computer. As the directions were printing, suddenly there was a strange damp smell in the door. I looked up. It was Jake.
His hair was still spiky from the shower, his shampoo’s smell soaking into nose. His blue eyes drooped lazily from the monitor, printer, then me, and over again. He frowned.
“Whatchya doin’?” he whispered as if he had forgotten hating me. I smiled. Good old Jake, he could hate your guts and still make a nice conversation with you.
“Printing, directions.” I explained, snatching the papers from the printer and set the computer on ‘sleep’.
“Oh,” he seemed to fall asleep in place, I thought. He was pretty tired. As tired as he was though, he still followed me to my room. “What for?”
“Uh, just some things Diana and I wanted to go see when we’re in Pennsylvania.”
“Like what?” he sat on my bed. I looked at him. Why was he asking so many questions?
“Talkative, huh?” I half sneered teasingly, stuffing the papers in my duffel bag. He shrugged.
“Just being friendly,”
“Interesting time to start that, huh?”
“Yeah,” he said absently from some book he was reading. I secretly thanked him for not replying nastily. I sighed. Might as well.
“Uh, Jake?”
“Mmm?”
I cleared my throat. “Sorry, about… y’know.”
“Yeah, I know,” he teased. I saw his good natured shrug in the corner of my eye. “I’m sorry too,”
“Yeah? Why?” I faked ignorance.
“I dunno. Guess… I’m kinda rude when it comes to you,” I had my back to him, but I could sense in the quiet softness in his apologetic frown. I pictured him biting his lip, like Lyn. They both did the same quirky things. What caused that in them? I thought. Did I do anything weird when I was nervous?
Another page flipped behind me. I stacked a secret road map in with my ipod and makeup bag. I was trying to fit everything in one bag, which was kinda hard. But I didn’t know if I’d have a shower in Maine, wherever I was planning on going.
Just one more thing. I reminded myself of the last family picture on my nightstand I had found; Andy with her natural blonde brown hair curling around her little shoulders. Lyn was a tiny baby in her arms, with only tiny wisps of whitish yellow hair sticking of her skull. I stood next to Andy with my hands together, a toothless but wide smile eating my face. Nicole and Dad stood in the back, Dad’s giant firm hand secured around her waist. His blonde hair and pale skin contrasted Mom’s dark waves and tanned skin. But their identical squinting hazel eyes glimmered in all of us. I always thought it sort of bound us together. No matter how different, still the same. And no matter how much I tried to convince myself that Michael and Jake’s crystal eyes were equally as wonderful, they weren’t the Marcais eyes; our eyes. Dad’s eyes.
I smiled and turned to face Jake on my bed, still unsuspectedly lounging there, reading. As I moved to the side of the bed, I noticed his amused smile. His eyes flew over the words of the purple notebook in his fingers. Then I realized what he was reading. I gasped.
“Jake!” I flung myself on the bed, ripping it from his hands. The blue eyes watched me, but they were still smiling. I flipped it open; the tickets fluttering to the floor. “God! How much did you read?” I begged angrily.
He sat back triumphantly, giving me his cutest I-got-you-new-stepsister sinister grin. Rumbling laughter escaped before legible words.
“Just enough,” he chuckled, fingering the tickets from the floor and handing them back to me, “to know what kind of things your not doing with Diana this summer,”
* O O *



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B.D.__Wether
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