narrated by: Colin
My cousin, Lorelei brought her college friend, Erin over in the summer of 2014. Sure I liked her, but we didn’t officially start dating until this past summer, and didn’t even talk while she finished her senior year of college.
Obviously I think she’s pretty alright, or I wouldn’t hang out with her regularly. She went to school to design video games, which earns her major points with me. She hasn’t had any luck though, no job openings, or interviews, and she’s stressing. She decided in September to just find any old job until her dream job opened, and she couldn’t really find much. In the end, she accepted a job to do housecleaning at a shady hotel downtown.
I didn’t do the whole higher education thing, but even I know that it would suck to be a maid when you have a college degree. I get paid more, and I just work at the gas station. My buddy Chris is talking of getting me on at the auto garage he works at, he’s aiming to own it someday, then he can hire whoever he wants.
I’m not good with the whole serious-life conversations. Usually we go rent a movie or a game, neither of us have much money to buy these things, and there’s deals if you rent mid-week.
Emma hates how much Chris is a gamer, and I find this girl, and she’s into it, and mechanical things too. She can talk shop with Chris, when I’m clueless. In my defense I’ve never owned a car, my twin brother does, but Luca doesn’t share his ride.
I like the moments where we can walk back from the video store, and chill on her sofa to watch a scary flick.
We hang out with Emma and Chris now and then, he’s cut back on his gaming since the tyke was born, and is playing house a lot these days. But even when we all get together, it just isn’t the same. Emma and Erin talk about babies, and I realize that Erin knows a lot about babies too.
I’m calling Luca up one afternoon to invite him over, and I hear Erin tell Emma that she wants five kids someday. I come from a family with five kids, and I want no part in recreating that childhood.
She used to play games with us, or be rooting for me when it wasn’t her turn, but now she can’t leave Chaz alone.
From there, things just got weird for me. On one of our walks, Erin mentioned she was hoping to have a summer wedding, and didn’t want to be old when she settled down.
I wanted to talk to my brother about it, but Luca is still moping. Constantly painting this gloomy, black crap, and sure he sells it, but not as many pieces as he could if he put a little hope, or used white once in a while.
I don’t get it, how can he still be moping over Meme, and now he likes this girl at Shortstack, but she won’t give him the time of day.
I told him he paints like crap, that Meme’s probably sleeping her way up in college, and everyone’s sick of his attitude. He’s a little touchy about it all, and practically shoved me. Chased me down into the kitchen, and started yelling at me how I must be some kind of mess up cause our parents don’t even like me, and I dated that Avery chick who never returned my phone calls.
It’s definitely a low blow, but after a day, I let it go. Really, I was low balling it before he did. He’s always been weaker than me, I try to push him to be stronger, but he rarely ever strikes back.
I ain’t the most sensitive bloke in the world, but if that ain’t crapping on your kid, I don’t know what is. What’s worst is that Luca takes it, listens to her harping, and dream smashing. It’s one thing if I say he paints gloomy crap, it’s another if his mother says he does.
I just stay outside with the twins, watching them play on the equipment. They seem fine despite all the wear and tear Mom and Dad provide in their lack of parenting. I feel a bit bad that I don’t know them at all really; I can only imagine the lies our parents tell to them about me, the big bad brother.
Erin likes them though, thinks they’re good kids. They’re almost ten, which seems a little crazy, I remember when I was that age.
Mom doesn’t stay long, and she takes the kids off without a word to me or Erin. I get her not liking me, but really, what can she find offensive about Erin? If anything she’s too darn nice.
We go inside to find Luca on the computer looking for a job. He says he’s going to keep painting, but he needs something more stable until he can get a paid position with his artwork. I told him that twenty is when you are supposed to be unstable, and chase dreams, but he wasn’t to be swayed.
Luckily, he couldn’t find anything. I hope he quits that stupid idea before he actually gets himself hired as a server or something else ridiculous.
We all headed out to Chris’ that night to loosen up some, and kick back.
I tried to ignore the nagging feeling that Erin wanted to saddle me down with a dozen kids. When Chaz threw up all over her though, I admit that I did laugh, as did all the other guys. Here, I thought, was the moment I’d been waiting for, now she’d see that she didn’t really want kids.
It hurt her feelings, and she sort of sulked off after handing Chaz back to Emma. The guys teased that I was in the doghouse now, and I better get out to my ball and chain to stop her from keying Luca’s car. I finished the match, then went out to track her down.
She was just kicking dirt, as she swayed side to side on the swing.
Maybe Erin and Luca are a little different, she likes to animate video games, and he likes to paint poetry, but they both drive me insane with their emotions.
It was mean, and awful, but I yelled at her. I didn’t like people calling her my ball and chain, or having to come down two flights of stairs to find her moping on a swing set, just waiting for me to fetch her, and say what? Did I really have to apologize for laughing that the baby threw up on her? I was harsh, and cut throat, and attacked her for wanting all those kids, and being stupid to think I ever would. She knows my family life, and my feelings, I don’t hide my emotions.
She cried, then left me there, and walked herself home.
I was too mad to go back inside, and be given crap about how “my old lady just left me.” So I smoked a few cigarettes, and walked home too. I gave her enough time so I didn’t catch up her to slow pace.
Then I turned into my brother, and moped around the apartment for a few days. It wasn’t the same kind of pathetic moping that he does, but a bored type. Chris is busy with Emma and baby, Luca is busy with depressing art work, and I had no one to hang with.
I did all that I could do at this point, one step from a Ben and Jerry’s shopping trip, I called her up to go get some spaghetti at Pizza Palace. This is my attempt to be funny, and a little romantic, everyone knows that spaghetti is romantic food, courtesy of Lady and the Tramp.
She accepted, but insisted on meeting me there. I figured even though that was odd, it was a good sign. When she arrived I told her she looked nice, and told her I was sorry. Something I’ve never said to anyone before.
It all seemed to be going rather nicely, albeit a little awkwardly. When I tried to lighten the mood, and steal a bit of her food though, she didn’t want any of that.
I thought it would be funny, since I have the exact same dish in front of me, but she was rather pissed about it. I tried explaining the joke, but she didn’t get it.
I was worried that it was the end of us, she seemed to really hate me. She assured me it wasn’t, she just needed some space to think. She asked if I was certain I didn’t want a big family, and I most assuredly am certain, then she said she had to decide if that was more important to her than I was.
Sure that might be great and all for her, but she’s only twenty-two, it’s not like her eggs are going bad and she needs to sack up quick. I didn’t know that after four months of dating, that we had to figure out if we were life-time compatible. In the same breath, I hate the idea of not having her around to hang out with, I don’t want to join my brother’s sap train, but watching her leave at the Pizza Palace pretty much made me feel like I needed a ticket to board.
Yep, Erin wants to get engaged AND married. Colin wants to play a video game, and see a wolf… not quite the same page. Colin IFS is 2, Erin is 5. If she doesn’t end up with one of my main characters though, she won’t be getting any!
Luca’s mind is still constantly on Meme.
He does like Nadia at the Shortstack Pancake House, but she doesn’t seem interested in him. Maybe if he pursued her more? I’m trying to get Luca into Artist career (still no luck!) and Erin into the Gamer career, and also no luck. There wasn’t even a crappy job available for Luca, they all required some college, or some level of career-minded seriousness.
Sure babies look a lot a like, but I think Chaz is pretty adorable. Not the most perfect outfit, but Emma and Chaz are not blue teddy bear gingham parents. I gave him hair, cause I always felt like he had hair.
Thanks for reading!!