2: By the Way

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“Michael has a son.” My mother decided to wait to tell me until we were already halfway up Michael’s driveway in the big white moving truck.

“Christine could you do me a favor? The next time you have to tell me about something that is going to drastically change my living situation for the next two years could you do so ahead of time? Not that surprises aren’t nice and all but I like to know things before they happen not as they happen.” My overly harsh tone escaped my lips as I looked out of the window and at the large sea foam green house we were pulling up to.

She nodded and decided not to comment on my tone of voice. My mother was the type that loved to make plans only seconds before she carried them out. Being spontaneous was one thing, but my mother brought it to a whole new unnecessary level of obnoxious. “You don’t need to help with the boxes dear Michael had some of Kale’s friends agree to help.”

“Kale being Michael’s son.” I said making a mental note of his name. I wasn’t against having a step brother. I was against the fact that I didn’t know I would be having a step brother until seconds before I was going to have to meet him and his friends in his house in his town and then more than likely go to his school. Silently I prayed to god that I could take the bus so as not have to ride with him also. I had no siblings and was not used to how to act around a sibling. 

I didn’t bother asking how old he was. In two years when I finished by senior year I would be moving into a small apartment with my friend Nina down in Florida and wouldn’t have to worry about him, Michael, my mother’s spur of the moments plans or settling into a house as a complete stranger.

Knowing that his friends would be moving my things I was glad that I had packed all of my intimate apparel into the large army backpack that I had on the seat in between my mom and I. Sure they probably wouldn’t have opened it but I granted myself the small comfort anyways. “No need to be nervous dear I’m sure they will love you!”

“I’m sure.” I muttered under my breath as I opened the door the moment she put the moving van into park. I busied myself with walking around, opening her door and helping her down the raised step. It helped to avoid me standing there awkwardly as Michael approached.  “He does know I’m coming right?” I whispered in her ear lightly as the thought popped into my head.

She grinned brightly at him as he made the last few steps towards us. “He’s known for weeks.” she replied from the corner of her mouth so he wouldn’t see. “Michael!” She greeted him cheerfully as they embraced and exchanged a light kiss.

He was a good looking man and I gave my mom props on that. Michael was tall and broad shouldered in great shape for a man in his early forties. He obviously hit the gym often for his build was strong and sturdy. Beside my mom he stood with his arm wrapped around her waist smiling at me. “Rein you’re mother’s told me so much about you.” 

“Ah, classic response number one when meeting the fiancé’s kid.” I teased giving him a lighthearted smile as I shook his free outstretched hand. His grip was firm and tight, my father always told me that was a sign of a confident man. I made sure my grip was firm yet also slightly giving. My father said that was a good way to show you were confident, welcoming, and a woman.  “It’s nice to meet you Michael.”

He chuckled at my response. “Your mother’s good looks and her charm I see.”

“Let’s hope I don’t get her taste in men.” I said with a wink as my mom beamed happily at me. For some reason important people such as Michael enjoyed a sense of humor like this, my father told me so. In case you hadn’t already guessed daddy dearest was a military man who raised me right, teaching me the ways of society and how to be polite yet not overbearing.

He looked behind him back to the house and I got the hint. We moved towards the open front door. “I’ll send the boys out to get your things. You don’t need to carry that.” He commented upon seeing the large military bag upon my back.

I shrugged. “Oh well I wanted to put a few things in my room right away. Make things more homey, you know?”

“That looks heavy here let me get that for you.” He offered as he started to extend his arm out towards me to take it.

“I can handle it.” I reassured him with a smile as he nodded to himself. I could already tell he was taking mental notes about me; I just wasn’t sure as to what they were.

Before I had the chance to protest he spoke and closed the door behind us. “Well your bedroom is up the stairs and the third door on the right; here I’ll have Kale show you the way. Kale!”

“I can find my own way thanks.” I assured him as I bounded up the stairs not bothering to examine Kale as he entered seconds before I was at the top.  I slowed down and counted out to the third door in my head not wanting to be an idiot and enter the wrong door. It pushed open easily and I stepped into the decent sized bedroom.

Purple was what greeted my eyes. Though the walls were a lovely peach the bed set on the large king sized bed was violet with a darker purple trimming. A round rug sat under the edge of the bed taking up a third of the floor with its flowery pattern all in shades of purple. As you could probably guess the light switch cover, lampshade, trimming, and even the window drapes were all a matching shade of purple.

I guess my mom had told them I was coming, and she obviously remembered to tell them my favorite color. Though it was a bit overkill I didn’t mind and decided to empty the contents of my backpack right away as an excuse to busy myself. I’d have to meet Kale sooner or later, that I was sure of. 

Cast No Shadow - Oasis 

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