Author: LetsJustRideAway PM
Things were great when I was adopted, but then Mom got a boyfriend & left us. Now I'm trying to help my Dad raise my younger siblings. I want to be able to be a teen, not an adult. I'm done replacing the gap Mom used to fill. I'm going to do what I want, even if it meant dropping all of my responsibilities. I'm going to do whatever I want now, no matter who it hurts. It's my life!Rated: Fiction T - English - Hurt/Comfort - Chapters: 12 - Words: 21,429 - Reviews: 10 - Favs: 1 - Follows: 4 - Updated: 01-29-13 - Published: 11-04-12 - id: 3071577
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
"Dad, can I please have my phone back?" I asked in a whiny tone as I followed him from the dryer to the living room he sat on the couch and plopped the white laundry basket at his feet before starting to fold. Kitty was playing in our room, Dakota had spent the night at a friends house and Adan was napping in Dakota's room because Paris was being punished for throwing a tantrum. Dad was making him take a nap because he was so cranky and tired, but by the sound of Paris' cries and screams, you would think Dad had beaten him. He refused to stop throwing a fit in his room. "Come on, I've followed all the rules and everything. Can't I just have it back?"
"No, Colt. You're being punished, and it wouldn't be a punishment if you controlled it." He explained with a tired sigh. "Help me fold, son."
"They're not my clothes, though. They're the Paris and Kitty's clothes." I said, feeling like a big man for reminding him that I was taking care of his kids.
"Please, just help me."
"Fine." I huffed and sat down next to him. I grabbed a fistful of shirts and started folding. "But seriously, Dad, what do I have to do to get my phone back?"
"You have to wait for the month to be over, just like we originally planned."
"But that's so not fair!"
"Colt," he sighed and turned to me. "What has gotten into you? You have had an attitude for the passed two weeks."
"Nothing's gotten into me. I just want my phone. Shelby said she would drive me, Dakota and Paris to school, but we can't talk if I don't have my cell phone. How can she text me to let me know she's on her way? What if something changes and she can't come get us?"
"She can call the home phone."
"That's so lame, though. No one uses a home phone anymore."
"What's more lame, riding the bus or using the home phone?"
"I promise I'll do just as you say if you let me have my phone." I repeated.
"Colt, do not ask me again about the phone." He said firmly.
"God, this is so unfair!" I smacked the folded shirt down on the couch and huffed. Dad looked at me, sucked in a deep breath and held it for a moment.
"Go to your room, Colt. I'm not dealing with your attitude." He tried to speak calmly, but it's obvious he's mad. I was never one to whine and complain, Dakota did that enough for both of us, but I needed my phone.
"But Dad-" I protested. He held up one hand to silence me.
"Go. We will talk about this later, but now you just do as I told you. Go to your room."
"This sucks." I mumbled, stood and hurried to my room. I tried to slam the door, but one of Kitty's stuffed animals was in the way and stopped it. I kicked it away, shut the door and flopped down on my bed. Kitty was in the middle of the room playing with a plastic toy train set. He laid the track already and was connecting the train cars together.
"Wanna play?" He asked.
"No, Kitty. Leave me alone." I snapped. He pouted for a minute before continuing.
At the time, only two things concerned my mind. Shelby and LaRae. I wanted to be able to text LaRae and send her pictures and actually get to know her whenever I wanted too, not just when Shelby was around with her phone .
I also wanted my phone so I could text Shelby. Our relationship was undefined, but we made out. A lot. And I loved it. We kissed in her car, at our lockers, and at the lunch table. We would both get bathroom passes from our second hour to meet by the empty cafeteria to make out. We kissed wherever we wanted to, and I made sure my friends saw me kissing the most beautiful girl in the world. The whole school was talking about how that shy, quiet kid got with Shelby Hannic. I was always being asked if we were dating. We both told people no, which made me look even better. I was that shy kid who was friends with benefits with Shelby. It was great. And I knew for sure that I loved her. She was perfect. Everything was perfect.
"Colt? I gotta pee." Kitty said. I groaned.
"I'm not standing in the bathroom with you while you pee."
"Please! Come with me!"
"No, Kitty! That's weird. You're too old to need someone in the bathroom with you."
"Please?" He asked innocently. He crawled up on my bed and sat on my chest. "I love you, Colt."
"Get off of me."
"Colt, come with me!" He started to whine. "Please!"
"I said get off!" I repeated and pushed him off of my chest. He sighed and laid down next to me with his head on my shoulder. I sighed, too, and regretted being short with him. He really was just a little sweetheart.
"Are you mad at me, Colt?" He whispered.
"No. I'm just stressed."
"Because you're in love?"
I turned to look at him with both brows raised. "What did you say?"
"You're in love." He repeated. "With Shelby."
"You're four. Do you even know what love is?" I asked with a chuckle.
"Yeah. Mommy use to love Dad. Now she loves Ace."
I didn't know how to respond, so I just put my arm around him.
"Who loves you, Kitty?" I finally asked. He listed off all of our family members, but didn't say Mom or Ace.
"I love them, too." He said to end his list. "And you love Shelby."
"What made you think Shelby and I are in love?"
"Dakota said so. Because you kiss her a lot."
"Don't listen to Dakota. She doesn't know what she's talking about." I sighed. I wasn't shocked that it was her who found it necessary to tell a four year old about who I was kissing.
"Do you love her, though?" I ignored him. He didn't insist in knowing, though. "Hey, Colt? We have to go to Mommy's today, right?"
"Yeah, we do." I sighed.
"I don't want to. I want to stay with Daddy."
"I know. Me too."
He asked if he could bring toys to Mom's because she didn't have toys. I told him yes, and he started to list everything he want to bring. I listened to him, listened to Paris's screams slowly diminish. Dad must be in his room calming him down. Kitty kept jabbering on. I closed my eyes and just blocked it all out.
"Why do I have to leave?"
"Because I have to talk to Colt."
"Can't I stay?"
"I already told you no, Kitty. Go watch TV."
"Why do you have to talk to Colt?"
"Because he was bad today. Now go into the living room."
I felt Kitty's weight being lifted from my bed, then heard him running out of the room. More weight was put on the edge of my bed, and I felt Dad's hand on my back.
"Wake up, Colt. Come on, buddy." Dad said as he rubbed circles between my shoulders. I lifted my head up and rubbed my eyes. Dad gave me a small smile. I put my head back down on the pillow. "Hey, we need to talk."
"I'm listening." I mumbled sleepily.
Dad started lecturing about how I was acting and why it's wrong and how he expected me to act. It wasn't anything I've never heard before, but I was hearing it a lot more lately. Shelby's bold attitude was rubbing off on me, and Dad wasn't happy about it. I wasn't really being bad, I just started to speak my mind. I wasn't helping as much. Instead of chasing kids around, I could now just sit on the couch, turn the television volume up, and pretend t he my household wasn't falling apart.
"So do you understand why I'm agitated with your behavior?" He asked calmly. I wasn't listening to his lecture, but I nodded anyways. "And are we going to change this?"
"Yeah." I agreed. He patted my shoulder.
"Great. Now go freshen up. We have to leave to pick up Dakota in about an hour, and then I'm taking you guys strait to your mother's house after that." He stood from the bed and left my room. For a split second, I wondered what Dad said, but that thought was quickly replaced by my daydreams of Shelby.
"Colt and Shelby sitting in a tree, k-i-s-s-i-n-g!" Paris chanted as I ate Ace's last doughnut. He may have stolen my mother away from our family, gave my little brother a bad cough from smoking and treated me like a little kid, but he wasn't going to get to enjoy his doughnuts. I even fed one to Adan before sending him down stairs to bug Mom and Ace. The kid was bouncing off the walls now.
"Shut up, Paris." I mumbled with my mouth full. Dakota smirked at me. Kitty just watched from the corner of the room where he was munching on a bag of Gold Fish.
"First comes love, then comes marriage!"
"Get lost, Paris!"
"Just admit that you like her." Dakota said.
"Then comes a baby in a baby carriage!"
"Shut up, you two!"
"You have a crush! You have a crush!" Paris sang obnoxiously. I headed to the living room, but they followed. I simply ignored them and turned the volume up higher. Unfortunately, Paris turned his volume up too.
"Paris! Shut up!"
"What's going on up here?" Ace's voice made us all pipe down. He came up the steps and walked into the kitchen. "What are you guys arguing about?"
"Colt has a crush, Colt has a crush!" Paris started to sing again. I groaned and rolled my eyes.
"Oh yeah? Who?" Ace looked in the white box where his last doughnut use to be. I could tell he was confused about why the box was empty now, but he didn't ask about it.
"Just this girl from school." I mumbled.
"Go downstairs." Ace said.
"I don't want to go-" Paris started to protest, but one harsh look from Ace shut him up.
"I didn't ask if you wanted to. I said go down stairs." He repeated strongly. Kitty hurried to his feet and hustled downstairs, and Paris, Dakota and I stood to follow. Ace pointed at me. "Not you. You stay here. Let's talk."
I sat back down and wondered what he wanted to talk about. He smiled at me, which I didn't like. This man had no right to order me and my siblings around.
"So, you got yourself a little girlfriend?" He asked and sat next to me. He turned the television channel and relaxed into the couch like he was talking to one of his drinking buddies.
"Not exactly." I said simply. I didn't want to talk to him about it.
"Are you going to ask her out?"
"I don't know."
"What's she like? Come on, you can tell me. Man to man." He smiled again.
I sighed, but had a hard time resisting the urge to talk about Shelby. I didn't want to talk to the guy who ripped my family apart, but he actually was making time for me. He wasn't too busy taking care of the little ones to talk to me in any way other than scolding me. He actually sent them away so he could talk to me. I was flustered, because I knew I was supposed to hate this guy because of how he treated me like a baby and ruined my family, but the more I thought about it, the less horrible he seemed.
So I started to tell him.
"But I can't talk to her because Dad has my phone, and even then I don't know how much I could actually talk to her because Dad is always asking for help with the little ones." I groaned. He listened to everything I said without interrupting. He even muted the television so he could hear me. From our first visit, I wouldn't have ever guessed that he would sit down and actually care about what was going on in my life.
"That's rough, kid." He sighed.
"I can't even talk to people without the conversation turning to my siblings. I couldn't even talk to-" I caught myself before saying LaRae's name. Ace wouldn't know who she was, but Mom would no doubt remember that name. "Shelby without me somehow talking about the little ones. It's ridiculous."
"Why don't you just do your own thing?"
"I can't just watch Dad struggle. When things get so out of control that there is no hope of one person handling it, how can I just sit and not help?"
"Sounds to me like you jump in to help even when it's not out of control."
"A habit, I guess." I mumbled. He shrugged and we were quiet. The silence got awkward.
"Want to watch some TV?"
"Yeah." I sighed and relaxed my tense shoulders.
Mom and the kids stayed downstairs, and I just sat there with Ace and watched a TV show that wasn't appropriate for kids between the ages of one and a half and eleven years old.
And it was great.
"Colt! Let me in!" Paris pounded on the locked bedroom door. I ignored him and kept talking to Shelby on Ace's cell phone.
When are you getting your phone back? LaRae has called me four times wanting to talk to you.
"At the end of the month. Then I'll call her. Have you answered her calls at all?"
Two of them. She really wants to talk to you. She said. Do you want to hang out tomorrow? I'll pick you up."Yeah, that would be great. Could you pick me up from my Mom's boyfriend's house?"
Sure. Just text me directions there.
"Colt!" Paris screamed my name. "Let me in!"
"Paris, I told you to leave your brother alone!" I heard Mom scolding Paris. She was taking care of all the little ones all day, and she was tired. I, on the other hand, wasn't. Ace felt bad that I had to take care of them, so he was letting me do my own thing.
"I can't wait to see you." I flirted. I heard Paris throwing a fit and screaming at Mom now. For once, I didn't have to handle his tantrum.
I can't wait to see you, either. We're going to have a good time. Her voice itself was the most seductive, beautiful thing I've ever heard.
"Paris!" Ace's voice boomed from another room of the house. "Stop with the fit!"
Paris screamed that he hated Mom and Ace, and that he wanted his Daddy. I wasn't sure where the other kids were, but I wasn't worried about it. Ace wasn't going to make me play parent.
What the hell is going on?
"Paris. You know how he is." I rolled my eyes.
God damn, that boy is loud.
"Try living with him." I laughed it off, but it faded quickly. I sighed, and something inside me told me that I had something more important to tell Shelby. I didn't know how to say it, and a lump formed in my throat.
Colt? Are you okay? She asked. I wondered how obvious it was that I was tongue tied. Are you still there?
"Yeah, I'm here." I forced myself to say. I gulped the lump down, and decided to just take the plunge. "Hey, Shelby?"
"I love you." I whispered. Not for dramatic effect or anything. I whispered only because that was the most sound that would come out.