Chapter 3 iThink I'm in Hell

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The next morning Keeley was woken up by voices that seemed to be arguing. Curious to see what was going on, Keeley headed downstairs. Her brother Zach was sitting on the couch with his arms crossed and a scowl on his face. Her mother was sitting on a nearby chair shaking her head, frowning while her father was pacing the living room, wildly gesturing and shouting.

"You could have gotten yourself killed!" he roared.

"Dad-" Zach started to say but their father cut him off.

"What were you thinking?" he shouted at Zach, his face getting red from anger.

"Dad-" Zach started again.

"Obviously you weren't thinking, were you?!" their father continued to rant. "You put yourself and everybody else on the road in danger!"

"I said I was sorry!" her brother shouted resentfully, finally able to get a word in. "And nothing bad happened!" Zach knew it was the wrong thing to say as soon as it left his mouth.

Their father's body stiffened as he clenched his fist into a tight ball. "You will be doing yours and Keeley's chores for the next month," he said through gritted teeth.

"That's not fair!" Zach instantly protested. "Football practice starts this week! You know how hard Coach works us."

"You should have thought of that before drinking and driving!" their father bellowed before storming out of the room.

Keeley's head snapped in surprise at that statement. Her brother was never that irresponsible. He always got a designated driver when he was partying.

Zach looked to their mom, sitting in the corner. "Mom, please," he pleaded, "talk to him."

She shook her head. "I'm sorry Zach. I agree with your father."

Zach huffed and stalked out the room. He came to an abrupt halt when he saw Keeley. His eyes spewed venom as he approached her. "It's all your fault!" he hissed.

Keeley was so taken back by his anger, she physically took a step back. "What did I do?" she asked in shock.

"You know exactly what you did, Keeley. How could you do that to me?" Zach asked with obvious resentment. "I thought we had each other's backs. Guess I was wrong, twin," he sneered as he emphasized the last word. Zach brushed past her and marched toward his room.

Keeley ran after him. "Wait, Zach." She grabbed his shoulder but he forcefully shrugged it off and continued down the hall. "Zach!" Keeley shouted after him but he didn't stop.

"Leave him alone for now, sweetheart. You know he needs time to cool off," her mother said. "Let's go make some waffles. That will put everyone in a better mood."

Keeley followed her mother to the kitchen. She didn't understand how Zach blamed her. He was the one foolish enough to drink and drive. He should be happy he got off so easily. Extra chores for a month? That's nothing. Their parents could have grounded him or taken away the car.

Keeley and her mother talked about a book they both were reading as they made waffles for the family. Once a month, Keeley and her mom would pick a book to read and discuss the story like a book club except it was just the two of them.

Breakfast was awkward to say the least. Zach refused to talk to anyone and her father just grunted out commands like, "Pass the bacon" and "Give me the syrup." Keeley and her mother chatted amiably about mundane topics to cover the tension in the room. When their father ordered Zach to clear the table and wash the dishes, Zach visibly clenched his jaw and slammed his fork on the table. He yanked all the plates off the table and dumped them in the sink with a loud clank.

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