Finally…Home…I sat, more like fell, down on the porch. My eye sight was blurry and my limbs stopped working. ‘Jeremy the jerk has a nice ring to it.’ I will never bet that idiot ever again. This was too much. I tried to pull my body back up, but I was stuck. ‘No. like actually stuck.’ I couldn’t move anything. I also couldn’t feel anything. I really didn’t want to do this, but I really had no choice. I pulled out my phone and tapped the name. “Dad?”
“Hey son. Jeremy told me you are running. Did you get home yet? I don’t see you,” Dad’s voice rang in my head like he was screaming at me.
I could hear Jeremy, Mom, and a few more voices in the background. “Dad. Could you come help me…I…” the humilation will begin in, “can’t get up. I’m on the porch out front,” three…two…one… Dad threw open the door, but there stood Mom, Jeremy, Matthew, Ken, and Jerry. Mom and Dad looked worried, but the rest of them were all trying to contain their laughter. ‘Jeremy is so dead.’
I got so much grief from the guys. Jerry asked Dad if this was similar to that day in Sophmore year where he had to help me out of bed. Dad did not look worried anymore; he laughed and told everyone about that day, like it was the best piece of new gossip. Remembering that day I couldn’t help but laugh along with them. I was feeling better now. After food, and a hot shower; I am beginning to feel my limbs again. ‘Tomorrow will be a whole other story.’
Jeremy told me that when he got back to the house Jerry and Ken were both there already and relayed my offer of the pool. So with his Dad’s permission he picked up Matthew and took the three of them to the office to get their names on the list.
But I also found out that they saw me on their way back to the house, and had no intention of stopping. “It was the best kind of revenge,” Jeremy chuckled as he relaxed into the sofa.
‘Pushing it.’ I glared in his direction.
“George,” Mom yelled from the upstairs. “George…”
“Yeah mom. I’m downstairs with the guys. Do you need something?” I walked over to the stairs. ‘If I don’t have to climb these stairs I am not going to.’ I could hear murrmering coming from my parent’s bedroom.
“Oh, right,” Mom said suddenly. Mom’s body rushed out of their bedroom and she almost skipped down the stairs, “I forgot all about you being sore. I was just going to tell you that I have a last minute baby shower party to go to tonight. Will that be okay, or should I just cancel?”
I knew mom really hoped to go because she already looked stunning. “All good mom. Is Dad going too?”
“No. He is going to be in his studio though. He has just a few more things to fix on his newest single. Will you five be fine?” Mom was attempting to put up her hair while standing in front of me.
I turned Mom, and started to push her back up the stairs. ‘Man these stairs hurt. I don’t know if I will be able to get back down.’ “No problem Mom. We’ve got stuff to talk about anyways. You just go back upstairs and finish getting ready. Your…umm…hair looks a little crazy from the back…” I was trying to be helpful.
Mom giggled as I helped her back up the stairs, “thanks for the input George. I will fix it before I head out,” Mom scurried back into their bedroom.
Dad exited the room at the same moment. “What are you doing up here? Do you need help back down?” Dad offered me his arm to lean on.
“No I should be good…” I took that first step and it felt like…I don’t really know what it felt like. Instead I latched onto my dad for support, “On second thought, I do need help.” It was going to be a slow decent. I was only able to move a leg at a time. “By the way Dad, thanks for taking care of Jenny while I was away,” I thought
I might as well bring this up while I had a chance alone with him. “The guys told me what has happened, and I am so happy you took care of her.”
Dad stopped. He sighed before talking. “I wish I could have done more. When the rumor continued to grow and be manipulated, I wanted to crush everyone who said anything.
I also…” Dad stopped.
I waited for him to continue…”Dad?”
“I was surprised that you had invited Jeremy to our house. I never believed anything they were saying about Jenny, but after your sophmore year I assumed Jeremy was like the rumors. But since you had decided to bring him; I realized that I had been misjudging him. My son would not be friends with someone who would do those things to Jenny.”
Dad’s grip loosened on my arm; I could feel his guilt. “Don’t worry about it Dad. You like the guys only had one side of the story. Jeremy has forgiven the guys so I am sure he would for you as well.” We both stopped and looked at the guys sitting in the living room. Jeremy was laughing with the guys, “I actually feel bad for Jeremy. He already had a crappy childhood, and now he is having to defend himself against being labeled as a bully. He is in the same boat as Jenny. They both had to leave home.” Thinking more about this made the whole ordeal more frustrating.
We had been standing on the stairs too long, because here came Matthew and Jerry.
“Do you need some extra help for the broken one,” Jerry pointed and smirked at me?
“Yeah, Mr. Matthews. We can help relieve you of your current duty,” Matthew started up the stairs to me.
“No thanks. I’m good with my…” I started, but Jerry and Matthew seem to not be listening to me; because they each grabbed an armpit and lifted me down the stairs. It
wasn’t so bad; but seriously the jokes and mocking is going to be unbarable.
Dad just chuckled and walked down the stairs into the living room; he pulled Jeremy aside as Jerry and Matthew finally made it into the room. ‘I know he is doing. He is
probably apologizing.’ “Thanks guys. you can let me down now.” THUD! ‘Ouch. They just dropped me on the floor.’ “Maybe next time aim for the couch. Geeze,” I crawled to the nearest couch.
“Sorry dude,” Jerry was rubbing his arms, “you are just a lot heavier than I remember. Right Matthew?”
“Yeah. What are they feeding you at that school?” Matthew rubbed the back of his neck.
‘Haha. Serves you right.’ Jeremy walked back into the living room. I caught his eye and gestured towards Dad, “you good?”
Jeremy nodded. He relaxed into the recliner, “Could you recap and tell me what all I missed from last night’s discussion. All I remember was…Derek and Trevor on the floor. Nice job Matthew with the smack down.”
Matthew’s head snapped to Jerry and Ken, who completely ignored his eye line. “Yeah, well my parents let me have it after that day. Even though I did not reiceve a blemish on the school record; they saw it as a red flag from a college’s points of view. So they have tried to keep me on a tight leash until now,” Matthew collapsed
into the arm chair behind him.
Matthew looked like he just gained ten years of exhaustion. ‘His parents are super strict; I am surprised he is still allowed to be my friend.’
“Okay George. I am off,” Mom came down the stairs.
She looked stunning. ‘Dad picked a good one.’ I got up from the couch and walked over to grab Mom her coat and purse.
“Thank you,” she kissed me on the cheek. “Your dad in his studio?”
“Nope. I’m right here,” Dad came around a corner, “I’m not about to let you leave without saying goodbye. Dad kissed Mom on the forehead, “Love you. Have fun, Hon.”
Mom smiled and she sweetly giggled, “I will. You boys don’t have too much fun. There is ice cream in the freezer. Bye,” she yelled as she closed the door behind her.
‘My mom is great.’ I looked over to Dad, and he was still looking at the front door. He smiled, but I could see the longing for her to be back. ‘I want that. A love like my parent’s have.’ Relizing what I was think I shook my head to clear it of non current issues. “You hanging out with us, Dad? Or are you going back to the studio?”
“Oh,” Dad seemed to jump and my talking; he must have still been thinking about mom. “Yep. Going back to the studio, but first,” Dad walked to the kitchen, “I’m going to
have some of that ice cream she mentioned.” He opened the fridge and pulled out the tub of Chocolate Brownie Fudge. “Since your Mom is no longer here, I am going to
serve myself a normal sized bowl. And no one here,” he pointed the serving spoon at each of us, “is going to tell her. Right?”
‘That’s Dad.’ I laughed but still nodded. The guys followed my example.
“Should I leave it out?” Dad pointed to the carton on the counter.
I looked at the guys and I could see their answer, “Leave it out. Also take all you want. I don’t know if there will be any left when you leave.”
Dad laughed and shoved the serving spoon back into the tub, “No worries. I’m already having way too much. Your mom would kill me if she knew,” Dad picked up his bowl and walked past the living room, into the hallway, and to his studio. “All yours,” Dad walked away without seeing the mad dash to the kitchen.