Okay, so this was originally a four-chapter story. That didn't work out so well. Gonna be starting my new job on Monday, so I might not be posting too much.
2Epic-riss: I'm glad you like it! I hadn't thought of doing that, but that's a really good idea. :)
The song So Far To Find You belongs to the awesome group, Casting Crowns.
Caleb talks me into staying up late and watching scary movies with him, since neither of us have school tomorrow. I've never seen a scary movie before. I've actually never been allowed to watch TV before tonight; I find it fascinating.
"Logan Daniel Sawyer! Are you paying attention?" Caleb asks, annoyed.
"Huh? S-s-sorry," I murmur, tensing expectantly.
One problem with being ADD, even slightly, is I either under-focus and can't do anything, or I over-focus and still can't do anything. I got punished a lot for that.
"I'm not gonna hit you. I'd been asking you if you wanted popcorn for ten minutes," he tells me.
"I've never had popcorn," I admit.
"Dude! Popcorn is like the best thing ever after pizza and Mountain Dew!"
I can't help grinning at this.
"I haven't had those either. I mean, I know what they are, but I wasn't allowed to have them," I tell him.
"Soon as I can, I'm buying you pizza. The Mountain Dew and popcorn situation I can take care of tonight," he grins.
He leaves me alone with the movie to get us Mountain Dew and popcorn. I'm so focused on the movie, The Unborn, it scares the crap outta me when Caleb comes back.
The smell of the popcorn makes my stomach growl angrily. I don't remember the last time I ate so much in one day; I'm not sure I've ever eaten twice in one day.
"You okay, dude?" Caleb asks.
He's grinning happily. He has his arms full with two heaping bowls of buttery popcorn, two cans of Mountain Dew, and a wad of napkins.
"I'm fine. You won't get in trouble for this?" I ask, accepting my bowl and can.
"Dad's not like that. The last time I got in trouble with him was three years ago. I lost my driving privileges," he replies.
To me, that sounds like heaven compared to being beat or screamed at.
"I drove drunk, almost totaled the car, and lied to him about it. I lost my driving privileges for three months, had to help pay the repair bill, and I couldn't get my license until I was eighteen," he explains.
"Wow! If I-If I'd done that, I'd probably be dead," I exclaim.
"It was funny in a way. He'd hug me for a little bit, and then he'd be all, 'Caleb Michael Sawyer, how could you do that to me?! You scared me to death!' that kinda thing, and then he'd be hugging me again.
"What'd you hit?"
"I have no idea. Like I said, I was drunk."
"Do you still drink?"
I don't like it when people drink. Things got even worse for me when Mom and her husband drank.
I can't help sighing in relief.
He taps his unopened Mountain Dew lightly against min.
"To a night of firsts," he grins. "Bottom's up."
I can't stand the taste of Mountain Dew, but I like the color. I love popcorn.
"You know, Mountain Dew looks like it should glow in the dark," I announce suddenly.
Nice, Captain ADD. He's gonna think you're weird, I think.
"You're kinda right. Slow down on the popcorn or you might get sick," Caleb replies.
I've eaten half the bowl in fifteen minutes. I feel fine, though.
Feeling fine stops two movies later. I'm barfing my guts up in the toilet. I don't think I'll be eating popcorn again.
"Dude, you okay?" Caleb asks when I walk in.
"N-n-no," I whimper, curling up on the air mattress.
I'm awake all night with my aching stomach. I don't throw up anymore, but I feel like I might.
I'm so tired I fall asleep during breakfast. But Dad doesn't punish me.
"Logan, after you eat, do you feel up to one of us taking you clothes shopping?" Dad asks, surprising me.
"Uh, Caleb can take me," I reply.
I don't wanna make Dad sicker. Plus, I'm afraid my ADD will be worse in stores, and I'm afraid of being punished.
"I had plans this afternoon," Caleb protests quietly.
"Logan, is it okay if I take you?" Dad asks.
I agree quietly. There's really nothing I can do.
"How long are you gonna be gone?" Caleb asks.
"A couple hours. You better not be, Caleb," Dad replies, warning slipping into his low voice.
I can tell Caleb's lying.
"Caleb Michael Sawyer, I told you last time if you ever did that again, your butt would be on the curb! Did I make myself clear?" Dad growls quietly.
"Maybe I was just gonna have a couple friends over and hang out," Caleb shouts.
"Last time, a couple friends turned into fifty teenagers who wrecked my house. I spent two weeks cleaning up your mess, Caleb! It isn't happening again. We almost got kicked out because of it. One of your friends threw up in the shower and left it. You're not having friends over unless I'm here."
Because of all the yelling, I'm bordering on another anxiety attack.
"Just because you're nineteen doesn't mean you can do whatever you want! You still live here. You still obey my rules," Dad snaps.
"Well, maybe I'll move out then," Caleb retorts, crossing his arms over his broad chest.
"You know you don't mean that."
"No, I don't. But I am so tired of you acting like this. You can't be yelling around Logan."
Dad stands quietly and motions for me to follow him out of the kitchen. He leads me into his bathroom.
"I'm sorry about all of that," he tells me quietly.
I've never had someone apologize to me. I'm not sure why he's apologizing either, He didn't do anything wrong.
"It's okay," I reply.
"I brought you in here so I could see if you need patched up," he explains.
While he cleans my cuts, I decide to ask him how he got in the mess of having two teen sons. I need a distraction from the pain.
"I wasn't always a good person, Logan. I was looking for a good time, which is how I met Caleb's mom. I was very underage at the time, but I didn't care and neither did she. She didn't want him because she wasn't ready and he would only get in her way. My parents took care of Caleb so I could go to high school. They weren't very happy with me, but they forgave me.
"I pretty much avoided dating until I met your mom. It was love at first sight on my part. I thought she was beautiful. When we started dating, I was the happiest guy on earth. She cared so much about being skinny that we almost lost you a couple times. She told me she hated me when she found out she was pregnant. Told me I ruined her life, her body, and her future. I begged her to let me keep you from day one. And she refused. Her thinking was you were mine, and, if she couldn't make me pay, she would make our child pay. I tried to visit you, you know, but she threatened to call the cops on me if I did. I don't regret having either of you; I just regret what you went through," he explains.
"Am I a burden?" I ask.
"No! Logan, you're a good kid. I think I got all of them. Go get a shirt, and we'll go."
"I, um, I didn't take any Adderall."
"Do you need any?"
"The, um, the bright colors distract me; I don't wanna get on your nerves."
"You won't. Do you have your inhaler?"
"Yeah. It's in my pocket. I just didn't wanna be bad."
"You're not. Is this because of Caleb?"
"I don't wanna make you mad."
"You're fine, Logan."
I offer him a timid smile.
I relax a little bit more in their car this time. I feel safer.
"Do you like music?" Dad asks.
"Y-y-yeah, but it depends on the kind," I reply.
I'm afraid he like heavy metal or something like that; I don't want my eardrums to bust.
"Is Christian okay?" he asks.
I fumble for a moment before remembering how to nod. I'm not used to being asked what I like or don't like this much.
"I didn't know you were a Christian," I remark.
"Caleb isn't. I go to the community church here in town," he replies, putting a CD in.
You were broken, abandoned
And crying all alone.
We were waiting and praying
And longing to bring you home.
And then we saw your face;
In a moment, you were wrapped up in our hearts.
We took a step of faith.
And now here we are.
Will you let Me hold you in My arms tonight?
I have come so far to find you.
So far to find you.
Will you take My love and give up the fight?
I have come so far to find you.
So far to find you.
As I listen, the words remind me of everything I went through and everything my family had to do to bring me home. I feel so small right now, like I could fit in the pocket of Dad's black leather jacket.
"I thought Caleb didn't drink?" I ask.
"That's what he told you?" Dad replies.
Nice. Now you just got your brother in trouble, I think.
"That kid's gonna be the death of me yet," Dad sighs.
"Please don't punish him," I beg.
"Logan, I'm not gonna beat him. He does it again, and his butt's getting kicked out. He knows better. And he needs to quit lying so dang much."
The rest of the drive is spent in silence from us. I'm kinda glad Caleb isn't taking me; this gives me a chance to get to know my dad.
I'm really dreading shopping. I know he'll probably get mad and probably punish me when we get home. The first store we go to, Rue21, isn't quite the sensory overload I expected. I'm on edge and easily distracted, but I'm okay. The only problem is the perfume and cologne people test out makes my lungs ache. And it makes me sneeze a lot. I'm easy to buy for so we aren't in there long; dark-colored shirts and dark jeans are all I really want since blood won't show as easy. Unfortunately, it costs close to seventy dollars, which is a lot more than I'm worth.
"I'm sorry, Dad," I murmur in the Jeep.
"Don't worry about it. You needed clothes. Is there anywhere else you wanna go?" he replies.
I'm starting to trust him, and it scares me. But I don't wanna stop myself.
"Um, I don't know. Do you think I have enough?" I reply.
"You need new shoes, underwear, and socks. And a couple more pairs of jeans," he tells me.
Wal-Mart is evil. All of the noise sends my anxiety to Pluto. I can't think straight. All I can think about is breathing deeply in through my nose and out through my mouth to try preventing an anxiety attack.
I am okay. I am not going to die. I am not going to pass out. This is just my brain attacking me. I am gonna be okay. It won't last forever, I tell myself silently.
I have a habit of pinching my thigh through the fabric of my jeans' pocket. Usually, the discomfort helps me get my brain out of this fear tornado. Today, it doesn't do anything except make my leg sore.
"Logan, if you wanna go, we will. I don't want you getting sick," Dad tells me gently.
"I'm fine," I mumble.
I want to get over this. Even if I have to force myself to.
I apologize again once we get outside. I feel like I'm failing a lot today. Dad either isn't mad at me or he just wants me to think that so he can punish me emotionally and physically.
"Logan, I want you to stay in the car while I make sure Caleb hasn't destroyed the place," Dad tells me in the driveway.
The apartment, amazingly, is still in one piece. But Caleb left for a party, so that kind of explains it.
Dad helps me put my clothes away for some reason.
My room is a lime green and black version of Caleb's. There's a bed against the north wall with a nightstand on either side, flanked by the bathroom and closet doors, a desk against one wall, and a TV and DVD player.
I'm almost afraid to put my clothes away. I'm afraid that if I do, I won't be able to stay. I want to stay so badly it hurts. but so little in my life has gone that well. So why should it start now?
Good, bad, so-so? I'd love to know what y'all thought. :)