Alone on Cloud 9 (19)

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Chapter 19                  Grade 12



"Sometimes in life there really are bonds formed that can never be broken. Sometimes you really can find that one person who will stand by you no matter what. Maybe you'll find it in a spouse and celebrate it with your dream wedding, but there's also the chance that the one person you can count on for a lifetime, the one person who knows you sometimes better than you know yourself is the same person who's been standing beside you all along."

~Bride Wars


I thought I’d at least get to make a good first impression, I’d even naively convinced myself that things wouldn’t be so bad, but as usual the universe was out to spite me. As the door swung open I couldn’t just hear my parents arguing, no, that would be too easy. They were standing right there in the hallway, my dad’s face just starting to take on the red flush of anger, my mother’s scarf draped unevenly around her neck, both of them gesturing wildly as their briefcases swung half-hazardly around in their hands.

Home sweet home. I thought bitterly.

Who knows how long they would have been at it if the door hadn’t been swung shut by Evan, who, in typical Evan fashion, was completely oblivious to the verbal smack-down happening centre stage at Chateau de Simon’s, and was busy humming what sounded like a Christmas Carol.

And then came the silence. The abrupt and complete stop of all sound and movement, aside from his humming, which took a moment and a jab in the ribs to die down.

I saw the embarrassment register on the faces of my parents as they simultaneously lifted a hand to smooth down their hair and plaster on cheery smiles as if they hadn’t just been caught like two kids with their hands in the cookie jar.

I had that surge of panic again, worried that everyone would suddenly think differently of me, that I’d be that girl, with the parent’s who are always fighting. I worried this would be a Michael Conner all over again, but not one pitying gaze was sent my way. They all seemed completely unfazed, if a little embarrassed, to have walked in on a bad situation, but I didn’t feel the need to go crawl under a rock for the rest four years, which had to be progress.

It came as no surprise that it was Wes who broke the tension, walking casually up to my parents and sticking a hand out to introduce himself like he hadn’t just seen two adults bickering like middle school pre-teens.

After that all my friends crowded around to say hello while my parents smiled and nodded in something of a daze. Mandy stood off to the side, hovering just on the edge, and I dragged her over to meet them too.

I was glad the boys hadn’t said anything about her tagging along, though Grace had given me a very confused look that I was sure would require an explanation at some point.

After a few minutes everyone seemed to relax and I decided this wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Sure, it was a rough start, but I figured it could only go up from here.

My dad picked up the phone to order pizza’s and my mom disappeared into the kitchen, leaving me to lead everyone into the living room.

Evan walked up to the cabinet with all our movies, rummaging through the shelves as if he’d been here a dozen times and calling Wes over to help pick something out.

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