Full Force

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Unsurprisingly, Nat's parents
quickly shoo everyone
out of their house, including
Seth, Euni and I.
The last I see Natalia,
she's arguing with her parents
and laughing nervously
at short intervals.
While whatever alcohol she'd had
probably hasn't worn off yet,
her parents' arrival certainly was
a kick in the direction of sobriety.

Seth doesn't seem
in a very good mood
on the way home,
glumly staring straight ahead
out the windshield.
He must have a lot
on his mind now, so I
give him some room and
attempt to deal with
my sister, who is still
giggling uncontrollably.
Seems as though she'd drunk
a lot more of the party drinks
than any of us -
and it shows.
There is no way that
Mom and Dad won't notice
her strange behavior.

I try asking her if
there's anyone who we can
stay the night with, considering
Mom and Dad would
expect it anyway,
but she just laughs harder
upon the memory that her plan
of staying with Martha was a sham.
And then, when I manage
to wrestle her phone from her,
intending to text Martha
or someone of the sort, I find
that it's full of messages -
all of them from our parents,
all of them about
the party we'd gone to.
Apparently Nat's parents
hadn't kept quiet about it,
and now all the parents know.
And even while Euni
keeps laughing in the backseat,
I know we're done for.

It's not until we're
almost home that I remember
that I never gave Nat her present.
I sit for the last few minutes
turning the box over
and over in my hands
until we pull up
in front of our house.
Seth shoots me
a sympathetic look as I
climb out of his car,
opening Euni's door to
tug her out, too.

I don't find out the entirety of
the damage that's been done
until the next day.
According to Seth, who
texts me early the next morning,
Natalia was grounded
the night before for
an undetermined period of time -
which, as he says, she deserved
at the very least
for providing alcohol to
underaged teens.

Eunice is grounded as well,
though our parents hold off
until this morning to
pass their judgement,
since she wasn't likely to remember
anything from the night before.
And they were right -
she woke up complaining
about her head and wondering
why she couldn't recall
anything after we first parted ways
at Nat's house last night.

I, on the other hand,
am a little surprised that
my parents let me off with a,
"You should have known better,"
and nothing much more
substantial than that.
I think they imagine that
Euni dragged me into
the whole party scheme,
since she usually does drag me
into her plans like that.
And sure, I hadn't realized
what exactly would be
going on at that party,
but I had gone of my
own free will, not hers.
I had told them that,
but they had only thanked me
for being there to help
get my sister home.

I don't understand
my parents sometimes.

But they had brought up
another valid point:
exams.
Over the course of the
past couple weeks, and all
the things that had occurred
in that short time, I had
completely forgotten
about my promise to start studying
right after that date with Seth.
That's sort of really bad,
considering exams start
tomorrow, and I'm
not at all ready.
After the realization hits me,
I lock myself in
my room to study, with
firm instructions to
the rest of the household
not to bother me.

That doesn't mean much, though.
My parents leave for the day
to run a few errands,
and Euni is still sulking
over her punishment.
Thias is still acting
listless and sad,
so Eddie has no one else
to go to but me.
I love my little brother,
I really do, but
when he comes to me
asking for help with
his homework and getting his meals
and even once because
it started snowing and
he wanted to show me,
I can't help but be frustrated
because of what
he keeps interrupting.
It's my fault, I know,
that I hadn't made an effort
to study this long while,
but now that I'm trying,
it seems like it still won't get done.

And then when Eddie finds
other things to do besides
distracting me, my phone
starts going off.
It's Seth, of course,
asking trivial questions such as
my plans for our upcoming
Christmas break, and
whether I think Natalia
will be able to attend
our school's winter dance
a couple weeks away.
What,
I shoot back at one point,
more than a little irritated.
Were you thinking
of asking her to it?

Of course not,
is his reply.
I have someone else in mind.
The pothead can have her,
for all I care.

I'm not entirely paying attention
to the conversation, so I
probably gave some
crappy answer in reply
in between scanning though
information I need to know.
The list of biology facts
I'm trying to memorize
is swimming in front of my eyes;
maybe I'm more exhausted
from last night than I'd thought.
Either way, studying and doing
a million other things at once
isn't working too well.

I finally turn off my phone
and delve full force
into my textbooks and study sheets -
though the worry still lingers
in the back of my mind
that I won't pass these exams,
not matter how hard I try.
Groaning under my breath,
I shove that thought away and
attempt to concentrate
on my study sheets.

×

Writing this chapter reminded me of Misalignment ;3; I miss it so much, honestly. I've been attempting to revise it (again) recently but I haven't had a whole lot of time... There are so many things I could change now that I've written most of this story. Seth's character is a big one - he's so undeveloped and crude in Misalignment. Sure, it's for a reason, but I'm not totally satisfied with it...

Anyway, back to this story. If you guys liked this chapter, I'd love if you would vote and leave me some feedback! It would be much appreciated <3

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