narrated by: Lulu
Since graduating high school last year and deciding to stay at home instead of college, my life has been a constant question mark. Mom pesters me over lunch what my plans are for the day, the next week, the rest of my life!
She just wants the best for me, at least that’s what she hammers into my head whenever I bump into her in the house.
She barely can restrain her distaste in my life choices, as one snide remark from me and she’s livid. I didn’t choose to stay living with my parents after high school as some torture for them, it’s actually quite horrible for me too.
I just don’t have any answers.
I do know that things with Clayton are going well. I still haven’t told my parents about him, even though I’m of legal age, it just seems too late to let them into this part of my life. I stay over when I can, usually feigning that I’m out visiting Scarlett on campus or staying with my sister, Rachael.
His place is the best, I don’t bump into my Mom or any other relative, and there’s no question outside of what I want for breakfast. He’s a pretty decent cook.
I wish that having my boyfriend also be my boss would mean that work was great. But it’s really not. Millwood is too small of a town, and then you add that people from South Port really like our pizza, and it’s just an evolving door of people I know.
I think that having Mrs. Grimsley see me working here was the lowest blow.
She asked what I’d been up to or if I was taking any classes. I felt like a defensive loser saying that this was all I was doing with my life.
I don’t dislike being a server though, taking orders and talking with customers isn’t something that I necessarily dislike. Maybe I’m ready for a bigger game than a small town pizza joint.
I’d really miss seeing this handsome face during the day though, and that’s why I’m stuck.
I didn’t skip college because of him, I failed to get in on my own. A 33 SAT is just miserable enough to be denied, and I didn’t have any ambitions anyway that this just saves me money.
It seems college doesn’t hold all the answers to a perfect life ether. Riley Gray came in, very much pregnant, and totally craving pizza while visiting her folks here in town.
Clayton promoted me to assistant manager in the fall, and now everyone pretty much hates me. Ember is constantly talking smack when I tell her to get closing tasks done.
He says that I just need to put my foot down, but it doesn’t matter if I’m nice or mean, they just don’t respect me.
If I didn’t have Clayton to whine to, then I don’t know what I would do. I wish we could just fire the whole crew and start over. Get married and own this pizza joint together. If I were his wife, then they would have to listen to me.
I come home late, totally exhausted and smelling of marinara. It has to get better than this, I just don’t see how.
When I get stuck at home, it’s always the day of band practice; it never fails! Jake is terrible at the equipment, he doesn’t even like music. I swear his friends only invited him to be in the band so that they could use our garage.
I think he knew that, because he invited Monroe inside to chat a minute, and quit. Told him the band could still use the garage, but that he’d rather just watch.
Monroe was cool with it, he’s mostly cool with anything.
When this music geek fest started, I was still in high school, and would watch them practice. They hadn’t even had a girlfriend yet, let alone a first kiss. All that has changed now though.
There’s always girls here to watch, cheer, dance a little, and make-out during breaks.
Jake really likes Vivienne, so he sits and chats with her when they are setting up or playing a particularly boring slow song.
Not everyone has the same feelings about the greatness of Vivienne though. Jake filled me in that Monroe asked Ella out a few months ago, and that she flat-out refused him. So he’s been with Vivi since, and Ella gets all bunched up whenever they display some affection.
I wonder if she’ll stick with the band or quit. I’d probably quit myself, but in some sick way, I’m sure she enjoys the self-inflicted torture.
But then, I’ve never been under her spell like her bandmates. Sad story that her Mom died, but that doesn’t mean that you have to wear only black, have pasty skin, and be sulky all the time. Everyone has rough breaks now and then.
Needless to say, that I don’t watch the practices anymore, and I scram when they start filling up the street with their rock noise. Usually I visit my older sister, Rachael out in South Port. I still can’t believe that her roommate, Caitlyn owns a house!
Caitlyn’s son, Thomas is always around. He starts school in the fall, and personally I’m happy for it. I’d like to hang out with my sister, without some weird Lewis-Caitlyn kid eaves dropping. Who knows what he relays to his parents.
Rachael keeps telling me that I have to get out of our parents’ house, and she always adds that I should not move in with Clayton. It’s not like he’s ever asked me though ether. That’s one of my unspoken insecurities, what if he’s cheating on me?
When I go to look out on the street level, there’s Thomas coming to tell me about stupid crap. I just want to watch the people walking on the street and not be pestered. There’s so much more happening in South Port than Millwood.
Lunch isn’t even alone, because ex-Grandpa, Ethan is snoozing on his chair. I don’t know how Rachael can handle it, her house is full of even more annoying people than home!
I try to talk her into getting an apartment with me.
She always says no. She feels compelled to stick it out with Caitlyn for the time being, helping her get on her feet. I guess stealing her cousin’s baby-Daddy was grounds for mega guilt. Lewis is an idiot, I don’t know how they both feel for his goon-face.
To end the month, I’m sitting outside and who do I see walking up the stairs of the next door house? None else but Rebecca Siew, mother of my best friend, Scarlett. Perhaps I failed to mention but the house next door is for sale, has been for ages because it’s a crappy small house that no one wants.
She spots me and feels obligated to stop over.
She tries to play nice, as if I’d believe that she’s planning to move into this tiny two bedroom house with her giant family of six. Her house is a billion times better than this one, and I know she’s not buying Scarlett a house.
I call her out on her niceties, and she just asks to speak with my Mom instead. I don’t know if she thinks that my Mom can reign me in, but she can’t.
I immediately call Scarlett. She’s been homesick and suspicious of her parents; she’s been positive that they were keeping secrets from her, and I just found them out!
I don’t relish telling her the news, but I feel obligated as her best friend to fill her in.
She has more questions than I could answer. Were they getting divorced? I didn’t know, perhaps it was just a separation. Did people buy houses for a separation though? I didn’t think so. I tempered my negative attitude for her benefit.
She comes home in a few weeks and I can’t wait to see her again. It’ll be great to have her just down the road instead of ages away, at least for the summer.
But I have a strong suspicion that this summer won’t be the beaches and shopping that we were planning.
Uncle Tim came over after his shift with Dad, and tried talking Jake into joining the police force. That is literally all the men in our family talk about. It’s some kind of Grimsley legacy, and so far none of us kids are interested.
He just laughs it off, he wants to be a publisher of a science magazine. He’s pretty set on it, and that’s why he dropped out of the band.
After he left, Mom and Dad cornered me in the kitchen to let me know that there was a new recruitment class starting in the summer. I could join the force by fall if I started now. Wow-ee!
I feigned interest, which got Mom really excited, then I proceeded to laugh. I don’t know what I want to do, but I definitely don’t want to be a Police Officer. I’ll figure it out, I think, it’ll just take longer than my ambitious older sister and annoying baby brother.
Notes: The last time I checked Lulu’s careers, she matched really well for retail… I did some adjustments on my careers though from the help of N99 before my hiatus, so I might check her again later. With their help, I have Jake intending to be a Science Mag Publisher. So her brother and sister both fell into what they wanted pretty early in life, while Lulu has always been a floater.
Cara and Charlie aren’t exactly thrilled with their daughters lackluster life-plans, Cara would like her to join the military (to straighten her out, give her focus, just like it did for her), and Charlie is rooting for the police force, like him and his brother. She’s not much of a pushover though, and pleasing her parents fell off her radar years ago when she could never be better than Rachael.
Holden is seeing Gemma, but let Ella know that he’d be hers if she’d say yes. Vivienne and Monroe are dating, not going steady, because dating isn’t exactly allowed for 15 year old Vivi. Jake was trying to date Ella’s sister, Marisol, and she’s way too young!
Thanks for reading!
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