Chapter 12: My Mother Is Hulk In Disguise

“Carli dear, wake up! We have some cleaning to do.”

I groaned frustratingly and pulled the nearest pillow to my face. I ignored Mom's call and pretended to be asleep still. Five minutes later, she was already pulling me out of bed, yanking me by the foot forcefully. My body collided with the floor with a loud thump, a groan escaping my lips. Man, my mother is such a Hulk.

“What's the fuss, Mom? It's Saturday,” I muttered sleepily, feeling a little annoyed at her for disturbing my slumber. I blinked a few times before finally opening my eyes, then focused on her as she stood by the edge of my bed, cocking her hip at me.

“Like I said, we have some serious cleaning to do,” she answered.

I followed her out of the room and into the kitchen. After grabbing a piece of toast and a glass of milk from the fridge, I settled myself on the island table and eyed her curiously. “What's the big rush? Christmas isn't till a few months,” I said with a 'duh' tone.

Mom paused from washing the dishes and turned towards me. “ A visitor's coming tonight. He's gonna be staying with us for a while.”

My eyebrows furrowed in confusion. “What? Who?”

To my surprise, Mom just smiled and threw me a wink. Man, she's creepy when she acts all teeny on me. “You'll find out when he gets here.”

“What? Why?” I asked her, rolling my eyes.

It couldn't be one of my future Dads right? Oh my gosh. She couldn't possibly bring home one of her suitors, that's totally gross. Man, I'm a total nutcase for even thinking that. Or Grandpa Carter? Nah, he's too busy fending his farm animals to go visit us. That old man needs a life, for sure.

“Because... reasons,” she responded with a tone of finality, cutting off my silly internal monologue,and turned her back on me. “And go clean up your room. It looks like an evil witch's lair the way I saw it. Then after that, you could help me down here.”

I rolled my eyes at her. “Alright,” I said, taking the news slowly, trying to let it sink in my mind. “Are you really saying that someone is coming over to stay with us?” I asked again, probably looking like an idiot with comprehension issues.

“Uh-huh,” she replied in a sing-song voice.

“Then why didn't you tell me before?” I whined, crossing my arms like a snotty child. But, she could've told me earlier, right? Man, someone – who I might probably not know or haven't seen my entire life – was gonna be living with us for a while yet she didn't even inform me beforehand? Lovely mother, she is.

“Because,” she drawled and put on a contemplative look, “reasons.”

I grunted and eyed her. “Please Mom, that is so not cool,” I muttered and stormed out of the room.

*        *        *

Several hours later, my room was spotlessly clean, much to my satisfaction. A grin escaped my lips as I took in the result of my endless sweeping and scrubbing. (Yeah, I wasn't really a fan of cleaning, you could say that.)

I made my way downstairs and instantly spotted Mom on the sofa, looking tired and worn out from all the work. I plopped down beside her and rested my head on her lap – just like what I usually do.

She started stroking my hair like what she usually does ever since I was little. This was a habit of hers that haven't died through the years.

From the living room, I could smell the delicious scent of the pasta she was cooking, in addition to the steak she prepared earlier.  “Hmm, smells good,” I mumbled as I sniffed the wonderful smell. As if on cue, my stomach growled like a tiger on leash. I smiled sheepishly. “Oops.”

Mom just chuckled after hearing the shameful outburst of my hungry stomach. “You better take a shower and get ready, dear. Any minute now, the guest's gonna be here.”

“Oh,” I said and started getting up. “Whoever that is, he or she should better hurry,” I said and tapped my stomach lightly. “My baby's an impatient camper.”

With that, my Mom just laughed and I took it as my cue to get up and leave. I stripped off my clothes and immediately stepped into the shower. The cold brush of the water on my skin felt good, almost refreshing. I did the basics and after several minutes, I was feeling good as new.

With a towel wrapped around my body, I tiptoed towards my room, shut it lock and began rummaging through my closet for something appropriate to wear. I chose something from the 'rarely used' section and settled with a cream-colored sleeveless dress which fell just above my knees and slipped into my flat shoes. To complete my look, I tied my hair in a bun and put on a little lip gloss. When I decided I looked decent enough, I went out of my room and proceeded downstairs.

Sure enough, Mom was already dressed, looking gorgeous like she always does, while preparing the dinner table. I helped her, bringing out the plates and utensils, and in five minutes, everything was already done.

“Any minute now,” Mom said as we sat in the sofa at the living room, waiting. I straightened my dress and put on my best smile to at least look 'polite' and 'welcoming'. Mom's pretty strict on manners, see.

Like what she'd predicted, the doorbell rang a minute later, making the two of us stand from our seats instantly. “I'll get it,” I volunteered and went straight to the door, wearing the best smile I could muster.

Without delay, I yanked the door open, and right there stood a ridiculously handsome guy, holding a bag like he was modeling for it. I, however, wasn't impressed. The smile was suddenly wiped off my face as I recognized the smirking face before me.

“What are you doing here?” I snarled at Chase.

He smiled widely and made a mocking tsk-ing sound. “Why, is that how you greet your new roommate?”

*        *        *

Very short, I know! I'm so sorry guys but this has to be done. I promise (or not) that you'll love the succeeding chapters ;)

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