Chapter Twenty-Four: Explosion of Emotion

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"Leonardo Moon, get your butt back in this kitchen right now!" My mom yells, smiling at me cheekily. My dad walks into the kitchen and my mom's face instantly turns serious.

He stands in the doorway, looking scared. "Yes dear?" He asks, putting on his best 'innocent' act. 

My mom brushes a hand through her naturally curly brown hair and then gestures to a plate and cup that are set down right next to the sink, on the counter. "Is it so difficult to put your dishes a few more inches to the left so that they are in the sink, or even better, the dishwasher which is right below where you put your dishes, rather than on the counter?" She asks with her shrill 'mom' voice. 

My dad glances from me to my mom. "Uhh, not at all Ellie. Hey, have I ever told you how amazing and beautiful you are?" He asks as he goes to tuck a piece of her hair behind her ear. 

Mom swats his hand away. "Don't sweet talk me mister. Go put your dishes in the dishwasher." He slumps his shoulders and trudges passed mom. 

He grabs his dishes from the counter and puts them in the dishwasher, then closes it. He spins around. "Ta-da!" He does jazz hands and acts as if he just did some amazing trick, meanwhile he just did a basic chore that even I can do without fail. My mom rolls her eyes and walks out of the kitchen feeling victorious. Dad looks at me and I shrug my shoulders before getting up from the stool I was sitting on and running to my room to do some homework.

A knock on my window makes me jump, but this time I don't hesitate to open it. "Hey Rancor." I smirk as he flies through the window. I sit on my bed and finish writing out an answer to one of the questions.

"What are you doing?" He asks, flying horizontally above me as I work.

I look up to meet his masked face, that hovers only a few inches from mine. "Just some English homework," I reply, "what're you doing here?" I ask and put my pencil on the pages in my binder.

"I wanted to just make sure you were doing okay. As well as talk to you about El Diablo."

I smirk again. "I'm doing just swell. And what about him do you want to discuss?" He floats around the room and then touches down to the floor just in front of the window.

"After your little disagreement, he was really on the fence about everything, but I convinced him to help us." He says. 

I nod my head. "How'd you do that, considering how pissy he was with me?"

"Well," he chuckles and sits on my bed across from me, "he actually enjoyed arguing with you. He said and I quote 'her feistiness makes your friend super hot'. His words, not mine. But, I don't disagree." He pauses and then shakes his head. I smile at him awkwardly. "Anyway..." he brushes a gloved hand over his mask covered hair, "he agreed to help us. He said he never liked Sinister to begin with so it didn't take that much convincing."

"Okay... Cool. This is good, our team is coming together nicely." I say, more to myself to give myself some peace of mind. I look down at my papers and breathe slow breaths.

There's a knock on the door and I look up quickly, making eye contact with Rancor. "Who are you talking to in there?" I hear my mom's muffled voice say from the other side of the door.

"Uhh, myself mom!" I call back. I face-palm myself and shake my head. Nice. Great coverup, Charlotte.

"Why are you so weird Char? Alright, um, have fun talking to yourself then I suppose." She starts walking away from the door and I hear her call to my dad, "Leo, I think our daughter needs more friends."

I can tell Rancor is smiling under his mask. "Your mom is great." He says in his robotic voice.

I chuckle and nod my head. "She is, indeed."

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