The Life and Times of Ellie Green
© Jessica Boden (JessieBo)
Any recognizable products and/or objects are not owned by me, nor do I claim them to be mine. I only use them in my stories.
Summary: Ellie Green lived with her mother until her mother died. With no living family members, Ellie has no choice but to attempt to find a new home. After a few weeks of staying in a foster home, she gets an offer to live with a 26 year old man, who's already adopted four kids. She reluctantly agrees, but doesn't know what this new home has in store for her.
"Ellie, I'm going out to run some errands, but I'll be back soon!"
"Sure. I'll see you soon!" I called from the living room. I heard the front door close and I set down my book. I headed down the hall to my room and pulled out my diary.
Is it weird I still have a problem addressing my deepest secrets? I'm just worried. Mom tries to act normal, but I know she's not okay. The doctors said she's fading fast but that we should treat her like she's normal. I already know that she's not going to pull through, but she won't let me help her in any way. She won't take any medication, and won't receive any treatment. I just don't think it's right. She could probably live, and she knows it, but she won't take anything to help her. So here we are, just waiting for her to die. She has Histoplasmosis. Some disease that effects your lungs and you don't know you have it until it's become serious. But she won't do anything for it. She just goes on day to day, living life like she always has. And I'm scared. I know mom's brave, but I'm not. I've never been more terrified in my life, unaware of when she'll leave me. I love her. And without her, I don't know what I'll do. I don't think there is anything for me to do. The doctors say there's no definite date, and I think that's what scares me the most. I want her to be here when I have my first boyfriend. And my first heartbreak. And when I graduate high school. And go to college, and get my first job. And I want her to be at my wedding. And when I have my first kid. And I don't know how long she'll make it.
I heard the front door open, and I quickly finished the entry.
She's home now, so I have to go.
I shut the diary and shoved it back under my mattress. I headed down the hall, looking for mom.
"Mom?" I turned the corner and saw my worst nightmare.
I paced around the hospital waiting room until I saw the doctor. I walked up to him.
"How is she?" But he didn't need to answer, because the look on his face said it all.
"I'm sorry, Ellie. This time, it was just too much for her body to handle. She's gone." No. It wasn't possible. The rock in my life, my best friend, my mom, was gone. "I understand you don't have any living relatives, so I've called Foster Family Agency and they're sending by someone to pick you up." He sat me down and I waited for whoever was going to pick me up to take me to the foster home.
But it wasn't sinking in. I knew in my heart that my mom was gone, but I just couldn't comprehend it. I knew that this was bound to happen, but I didn't know what to think. Instead of crying, or yelling, I was just blank. I didn't think. I didn't feel. I didn't want. I just didn't exist. I was a lifeless body without my mom.
"Well hello Ellie." I nodded in the direction of the kind looking woman. "Here at Foster Family Agency, we try to build families. I will tell you now that at 16, it's not very likely for you to find a permanent home. Most couples, or families, want to adopt a younger child, younger than four, and it's just not likely for you to get picked. We'll do our best for you, though. We do a have a few families that have adopted older children, so we'll contact them. Okay?" I shrugged. Even three days after mom's funeral, I wasn't speaking. I was just as bad as I was the day I found out. The director of the home sighed and nodded. "Alright. We've got Shelly to take you to your room, so please take your bag and follow her."
I got up and grabbed my suitcase full of my belongings and left the woman's office, following a girl who appeared to be no older than 12. She lead me to a large room and pointed to a bed. I set my bag down and looked around the place.
Out of the 10 or 15 beds in here, only 7 of them had occupants, not including me. They were all girls, and most of them were very young. I laid down on my hard, itchy bed and stared up at the ceiling. I didn't like this place. But then again, I wouldn't like any place without mom.
"Goodluck Ellie!" I lightly hugged the little girl who's bed was across from mine and nodded.
"Don't worry Anne, this new home will be nothing without you." She giggled and let go of me. Miraculously, the director of the home had found me a place to live in only two weeks. It was some guy who had adopted four other kids, and didn't mind taking me in.
"Ready?" I stood up and grabbed my bag, nodding at the director. She walked down the hall with me, her heels clicking loudly, while my worn-in converse squeaked on the linoleum flooring. "Now, he's 26, and very kind. We've had multiple background checks on him, and he passed with flying colors, so you should be okay to stay with him." I nodded. Over the past two weeks, I'd gotten better, but I still couldn't talk, or think about her.
We headed into the main room and I saw a few people, and I tried to figure out who I was staying with. There was a middle-aged woman (clearly not my adopter), a young couple (the director said it was only a guy, so no), and a guy with dark hair. Well, I guess I found my match.
The director stopped me in my tracks.
"Mr. Soloway." The guy's head perked up and he stood up and turned to face us. He seemed normal enough. He had brown hair and grey/green eyes. He stuck out his hand to the director and she shook it firmly. "Hello again, Mr. Soloway." He nodded.
"Yes. It's been a while." The director smiled and gestured to me.
"This is Ellie Green, the girl I've told you about." He nodded and shook my hand.
"Hi. I'm Kevin."
"Well, we should get those papers signed, and then you'll be out of here." He nodded and followed the director into her office, while I coattailed behind them. The director sat down at her desk, and started handing paper after paper to Mr. Soloway, while I studied him carefully. Left handed, wrote lightly with the pen, and set his hands in his lap after he would sign each paper. Overall, a pretty passive guy with polite tendencies. He wasn't too bad.
After signing all of the appropriate documents, the director officially "released me into Mr. Soloway's care." Why did I feel like a car just being bought? I was just waiting for the director to say Mr. Soloway could now "take me from the lot."
We all stood up and shook hands again, and I followed him outside to a truck, where he took my bag and threw it in the bed. I got in and waited as he started up the car.
"So, Ellie." I turned my head to face him. "When we get home, you'll be able to meet my other adoptive kids." I nodded.
"Alright." He started up the car, and drove a little bit before I spoke up. "Can I ask you a question?" He glanced over then looked back at the road.
"Why have you adopted so many kids? From what I hear, you've got four." He nodded.
"Well, it all started with my nephew, who lost his parents in a fire, so I adopted him. But then I started thinking about all of the older kids who have lost their parents, and I realized that I could help by adopting. So I adopted the three other kids, and now you." I nodded. "I will warn you now, though, that they're all a bit rowdy, being boys and all." All boys? "Don't worry though. The only one that's likely to make a move on you is Will, and he does that to all girls, but never really means it." I nodded. Okay then.
Shortly after our odd talk, we pulled into a garage of a nice looking two-story house. Mr. Soloway got out, and grabbed my luggage for me, as I got out of the truck.
"Come on in." He opened the door from the garage into the house and I followed him in. "You guys, I'm home!" I heard some muffled laughter and loud footsteps. Mr. Soloway made a face and sighed. He looked at me and shrugged, giving me a "what can you do?" look. The footsteps got louder, and I saw a few heads appear around the corner. They quickly disappeared when they saw me and Mr. Soloway set down my luggage. "You guys are being idiots. Get in here." He disappeared around the corner and came back holding the collars of the boys shirts. A few of them struggled, but they soon settled down.
"You guys, this is Ellie." I carefully glanced over each of them. The first, a blonde boy, came up and shook his hair a little.
"Very nice to meet you, I'm-"
"Will." I said. I could already tell by the strong, axe cologne and the saunter in his step. He looked a little surprised.
"Um, yeah. How'd you know?" I shrugged.
"Lucky guess." Mr. Soloway chuckled a little.
"Alright, well as you know, that's Will, and these," he gestured to the two boys at his side, "are Fischer and Jared." The one he identified as Fischer had dark red hair, which was clearly dyed, given the bright color, and his asian background. I would guess Korean. The boy identified as Jared was pretty tall, and had dark hair. I assumed he was the cousin, given the similarities in looks, and the grip on Jared's collar wasn't as tight as on Fischer's.
"Hi." They nodded and Fischer struggled out of Mr. Soloway's grip.
"Hi there! I'm Fischer and if you need anything, you know like, some good girl talk, or maybe a high five, or something, I'm your guy!" Okay, note to self: fear the Fischer.
Mr. Soloway set down Jared, and he just waved a little.
"Hey, where's Jack?" They all shrugged.
"Probably in his room." Will said. Mr. Soloway nodded.
"Well, Ellie, Jack is kind of anti-social, as you can tell, but you'll probably see him when he comes down for dinner."
"Speaking of which, when is that, because I'm getting kind of hungry." Fischer spoke up. Mr. Soloway shrugged.
"Probably in an hour or so? What do you guys want?"
"Oh! Oh! I want some pizza!" Fischer said. The other two shrugged. Okay, so we've got the annoying, but probably funny, guy, the player, the normal one, and the loner? I'd have to find out more later, but for now, I'd like to just figure out the living situation.
"Do you want anything specifically, Ellie?" I jumped a little at the sound of my name, but shook my head.
"No thanks. I do have one more question, though." He nodded. "Um, where am I staying?" He nodded.
"Good point. You guys go fend for yourself for a bit, while I get Ellie settled in." They all shrugged and headed in separate directions, while Mr. Soloway picked up my bag again. "Follow me." He headed down a hallway and I followed after a little. "Now I've given you the den/bedroom, so you have some privacy, and the bathroom's across the hallway." He pointed to a door and opened the one across from it, revealing a small room with a dresser, and a bed. "I haven't done much with it, and figured you could decorate it as you please." I nodded and he set my bag down. "I'll leave you to get settled in, and you can come out whenever you want." I nodded.
"Thanks." He nodded.
"Sure." He headed out of my new room, and shut the door. I walked around a little, and opened my suitcase, pulling out my diary and sitting on my bed. I flipped to the next available page, and started writing.
I know it's been a while since I last wrote, but I haven't had much to say. I moved into the new home today. With Mr. Soloway and all of his kids. I've met all but one of them. They're all boys, too, but they seem, interesting. From what I can tell, I'm dealing with a house full of rowdy boys that aren't controlled very well. I think Mr. Soloway's too passive to give any real direction. But I don't actually know much about them. I'll keep you updated on what I find out.
I shut my diary and shoved it under the mattress, like I did back home. I slowly unpacked my suitcase, and after I was done, I noticed that it had been almost an hour. Wow, I'm a slow un-packer.
I opened the door to my room lightly and listened for any noises. I heard the hum of a tv, and a few voices, so I walked down the hallway and noticed Mr. Soloway and Jared sitting on the couch, watching some nondescript television show. Note to self: they're close cousins. Mr. Soloway glanced up and saw me. He smiled.
"Did you get settled in?" I nodded. "Good. We'll get dinner now, then."
"Dinner!" We heard the distinct yell of Fischer from upstairs and the thunderous echo of footsteps. Mr. Soloway and Jared rolled their eyes as Fischer raced into the room, tightly holding onto his bowler hat. "I heard dinner."
"Yeah. You did. You wanted pizza, right?" Fischer vigorously nodded and Mr. Soloway sighed, standing up. "Okay, any objections?"
"Objections to what?" A sweaty Will, sans shirt, walked into the room, holding a basketball.
"Dude! You can't just walk around the house all sweaty and shirtless now! We've got a girl here!" Fischer gestured to me and I snorted.
"Wow, you're quick to notice." He pouted as Will laughed.
"I think you just got served." Will slapped him on the back. "So what am I objecting to?"
"Pizza for dinner." Will shrugged.
"Fine by me."
"Good. Since Jack isn't down here, he won't get a choice. I'll go pick it up now." Everyone shrugged and Mr. Soloway grabbed his keys and headed out the door. We heard his car start up, and everyone sat down, except for me.
"So, then, Ellie," Will started, taking a drink from a water bottle. "How old are you?"
"Are you really?" Jared spoke up. Will threw his hands up.
"What? I just want to know if she's jailbait or not." Dear god, help me now. Will looked back at me. "So, how old are you?"
"Sixteen." I said slowly. He nodded and smiled.
"Very good. Well I am 18," Do I care? "Jared over there is 17, and Fischer is 16." Like I said, do I care?
"Okay?" He nodded.
"Thought you should know that."
"Why don't you sit down?" Fischer said, gesturing to the spot next to him.
"Or, you could sit next to me." Will piped up. I quickly calculated the probability of being groped, and who I was more likely to maim. Fischer came up as the lower risk, so I shrugged and sat down on the end of the couch, pushing myself away from the hoard of boys.
"Ha! Dude, she doesn't like you!"
"Yeah, well she sat next to me, not you!" They got in a mini argument and I stood up, backing toward the hall.
"Alright, so I'm going to go back to my room now, so-" I stopped talking as I ran into a hard surface. Fischer started laughing, and Will quickly joined in. I turned to see what I hit, and realized it was a person. "Oh, I'm sorry. I've got to go now." I walked down the hall and headed into my room, shutting the door behind me.
I sat down on my bed and sighed. I'd probably never get used to being here. Nothing was right. I shouldn't be here. I still didn't know what to do with myself. I started to get lost in the memories when there was a knock on the door.
I stood up and opened the door a little. It was the person who I'd run into, and judging by the fact that I hadn't met them yet, I assumed it was Jack. He rubbed the back of his neck a little.
"Um, you good?" What?
"Just now. You seemed kind of, flustered." Oh. I shrugged.
"Yeah. Fine." He nodded.
"Alright. Bye then." He walked back down the hall and I shut the door. That wasn't awkward or anything. I sat back down on my bed and curled up, trying to relax. I heard Mr. Soloway come in the house, so I stood up. It was time to endure a dinner with these people that were now my family.
I woke up, gasping for air, in a cold sweat. I looked around the room and saw nothing but my pale reflection in the mirror. I checked the digital alarm clock, and saw the red numbers blinking 5:36. Great. It'd already been a week and I still wasn't used to this place. The nightmares were just as bad as ever, and I was barely adjusted.
I got out of bed and headed to the bathroom across the way. I soaked in the warm shower and washed my hair, as I'd done every morning for the past week.
I got out and dried off, putting my pajamas back on and towel dryed my hair. I headed back to my room and laid down on my bed. I had an hour before I had to go to my new school, and I didn't know what to do with it, so I pulled out my diary.
What can I say? Nothing's changed. Everyone's been welcoming (well, mostly, but Jack was just as isolated as ever), and things have settled down, but I still feel alone. I try to be as normal as possible, and I think that everyone believes it, but I don't. I know that every day here is a lie. And it's almost hard to live like this. I get by each day, but nothing's really real. I don't exactly know what to do, but I hope that it starts coming naturally, because I don't know how long I can keep this up.
I shut my diary and shoved it under my mattress. There was a knock on the door and I heard Fischer's muffled voice.
"Hey Ellie, get up. It's time to get ready."
"Okay." I called. I stood up and threw on some jeans and a tank and slid into my converse. I pulled my hair back into a ponytail and headed out of my room and down the hall, into the kitchen. The guys were chowing down on some cereal, while Kevin (aka Mr. Soloway) was slowly dinking a cup of coffee.
"Morning." I smiled as brightly as I could as I poured a cup of coffee for myself. How else was I supposed to get through the agonizingly long day?
"Are you really that much of a morning person?" Jared groaned into his cereal.
"If I was a morning person, would I be drinking this coffee?"
"Good point." I took a long gulp of the black coffee and sighed at the warmth. I finished the cup about as fast as the boys finished their cereal and we all got up, picking up our backpacks and heading out to Jared's car. I got in the back with Fischer and Jack, while Jared drove and Will got passenger. Yep, this is how it's been for the past week. You wanna know the best part? Yeah, I hope you detected the sarcasm in that, because there is no good part in that. When I'm at school, I'm viewed as a freak, and the guys try to protect me, but it only works so well. Oh yeah, and I get called a "slut" or "whore" every day for living in a house full of guys. It's not my fault I live with them! I should be back home! With mom.
We pulled up to the school and I got out, waving to the guys and walked to class. Just another day of hell.