I went home that night and actually had dinner with my family. My brothers never minded ’cause they knew I was always with at least of the gang. They also knew that they looked out for me as well, if not better, then they did.
Stacey made dinner. It wasn’t anything special, homemade burgers and fries with salad.
I savored every bite though. This was my last meal of meat for the rest of the week. Because I was born so early I’m not exactly fully developed like everyone else. I eat too much meat then it hurts my stomach and it could shut down my digestive system.
Everyone’s gotten used to it. Though I doubt it helps when Buddy is lactose intolerant. We get by. No worries.
I took another shower before I went to bed. I always take two everyday for some reason. I don’t know why.
I figured I’d actually be about to sleep tonight. I was so wrong. The second I fell asleep;
I was running through a dead forest of black trees. The red moon bathed over everything turning everything the colour of blood. My feet kept crunching on sticks, twigs, leaves, and rocks. I was out of breath. I was running out of time. I fell face first into the freezing mud. I stood back up and took off running again. I didn’t know where. My breath was beginning to be shallow. I was getting tired, but I couldn’t stop. It was getting closer and closer by the second. One of the roots from the trees shot up and grabbed my ankle sending me forward once again into the mud. I was already numb from the cold. I was struggling so hard to get away. I didn’t have my blade on me. No one was around. And to top it off, it was here. Standing before me, still in the shadows of the dead trees was what I was running from. A giant, black, part wolf, part bull, part human demon that was hunting me. It extended a large muscular arm towards me. It’s hand was larger than my head, it had long powerful fingers and on the end of each one was a razor sharp claw that looked like they could cut through steel. It reached for me. I tried to back up, but I couldn’t. Then it stepped into the light of the moon. Piercing yellow eyes digging into me, razor sharp teeth that were way too large for it’s over sized mouth. It was at least twice the size of Darry and Junior put together. It grabbed me by the neck and pulled my up so I was eye level with it. I was gasping for air, as it restricted my airway more. It finally lifted me up above its head. Turning its head up so it was looking up at me. It opened it’s mouth and dropped me. All I could do was scream.
I shot up screaming at the top of my lungs. Junior and the twins were the first ones in my room. I always found it slightly amusing how even though Junior’s room was the furthest away from mine, he was always the first one in the door. I always found it comforting.
I was breathing heavy as Jaguire grabbed my shoulders and asked me if I was alright.
I leaned forward and rested my head on his shoulder, wrapping my arms around his waist.
“I was scared.” I told them, “I was so real.”
“Which one was it?” Buddy asked from the door way as Maddog was in the room next to Pepperonii.
“The wolf-bull.” I told them hanging on to Jaguire tighter.
He held me a little tighter too.
“The new one?” Junior asked.
I nodded. We had a system for all my nightmares. I named all of them. But every once in a while a new monster that haunts me while I sleep will come along and scare me even more. See, even though there real, I go through the night mares over and over again often enough that after a while it’s not so scary anymore. I’m still scared, but not to the point in which I’ll wake up screaming like this. But more like me waking up in an icy sweat.
“I’d say it’s about time we named that one.” Maddog said.
They all looked at me.
“He has horns, black fur like hair that covers his body, bull like hind legs, human like arms, sharp claws, he’s bigger then Junior and Darry put together, yellow eyes that cut through anyone, and razor sharp teeth with an abnormally large mouth.” I said, “Any ideas?”
They all thought for a minute.
“What was building up to for him to scare you like that?” Jaguire asked.
“A blood-red moon giving everything the colour of blood, black dead trees, me running from him, he eventually catches up with me, a root catches my ankle so I can’t move, he constricts my air way and then he lifts me up over his head, opens his mouth, and drops me. That’s where I always wake up.” I croaked.
“He’s not going to hurt you anymore, Kitten.” Jaguire said pulling back slightly so he could look into my eyes, “Wanna sleep with us tonight?”
The way he always says that, it always makes me think that it means, “Sleep in our room for the rest of the night, you’ll feel better.” I just nodded. He scooped me up and brought me down to his and Pepperonii’s room.
“Night Kitten.” They said together.
“Night guys.” I whispered before going into a dreamless sleep.
When I woke up the next morning Jaguire and Pepperonii were still on either side of me. I could never ask for better brothers than the ones I already have.
Going up to my room and getting cloths, something dawned on me. This was the last week of school before summer vacation. Also, it was only about a month or so before I was sixteen and Junior was thirty-one.
I showered and got dressed. Made breakfast and lunches, ate, grabbed my book bag and was out the door with my DX cap and shirt in my bag as everyone was getting up.
I walked over to the Curtis house. Nothing out of the ordinary.
“Hey!” I yelled and sat down.
“Hey!” They yelled back.
I watched Mickey Mouse with Two-bit until we had to go. I was in between him and Steve as we walked. This was usual. Soda would ride with Darry, Dally either wasn’t there or would be out causing trouble, Johnny and Pony would walk behind us and they’d talk. And then the three of us would goof around ’till we got to school.
I had a mixed scedgual so I had a couple of classes with Pony, a couple with Johnny, a couple with Steve, and a couple with Two-bit. The only one I had alone was gym. I was perfectly okay with that too.
First class was math with Two-bit and Pony, second was biology with Pony and Johnny, third was English with Pony, fourth was gym by myself, then there was lunch, after lunch I had music, me and Steve only took this one. Johnny and Pony don’t really have an ear for music, and Two-bit refused to be with any band nerds. This wasn’t the case for us, it was free music. Where you could play whatever you wanted, one catch was the you and everyone else had to perform one dorky song every year. The teacher said we got a lot better since Steve and I joined, he was good on guitar and I was a pianist since I was about four. Sixth period was history I had with Johnny, Pony, and Two-bit, seventh was health with Two-bit, and last me and Steve had auto mechanics.
The day went by so slowly. This was our last day of actual classes, after this all we had was exams.
We all walked to the DX. Pony and Johnny were gonna stick around because I was gonna show ’em something cool they should know about fixing a car. Two-bit always bummed around after school. It was like having my own personal three stooges.
“Hey Pepsi!” I chimed as we came in.
“How was tortor?” He asked laughing as he looked up over his magazine.
“School isn’t tortor, Soda.” I told him sliding on my shirt, “It’s the Socs and the stupid teachers that hate us and wont do nothin’ for us that make it hell.”
Everyone laughed at that. But they couldn’t deny it was the truth.
“I think you beat Two-bit again.” Soda said and slapped my cap on my head.
I fixed it as I said, “One of these days we’re gonna need to stat keepin’ score.”
They laughed and I walked into back. Pony and Johnny followed.
I popped the hood and began to work along with teaching then a neat trick and helping them study. My job in this gang is never done.
After our shifts were finished we locked up and headed home. Well, I headed home. Two-bit, Steve, Johnny, Soda, and Pony headed to the house.
When I got in I threw my bag down and yelled that I was home. There was no answer. I looked around. The house was deserted. Just like that day~
I shook my head to snap out of that train of thought. I wasn’t going to think about that, or anything else like it. What happened, happened, much as I want to I can’t change it.
I went into the living room and sat at my piano trying to do homework. But I couldn’t my sheet music wasn’t the way I left it, and it was bugging me. I sat up right while straddling the bench, they way I usually sit when doing my homework. I reached up to fix it when I noticed something; one of these piece weren’t sheet music, it was a note.
Sorry to tell you this but no one’s home if your reading this. We all went out. Me and Stacey took the kids out because Ellie made honor roll. Buddy’s still out at the office, and Jane is volunteering at a camp, she took the quadruples with her. I think both twins had a date, and Maddog is working late. Sorry ’bout this again. Buddy should be back around nine or so, we’ll come back around ten. Don’t ask me about the other’s ’cause you know them as well as I do. Love you, Kat. Please don’t freak out again. -Junior C.
I read this and held it in my hands for a little while. At least one of them was nice enough to leave this for me. I thought as I put it down.
I got up and turned on the tv, nothing was really on. I also put on the radio. I needed some kind of noise. I was used to having the tv blaring, phones ringing, kids running around yelling, mom’s telling them to stop, me being asked to come play, dishes in the sink being washed and car doors slamming.
It seems like a lot, but not really. I always find the silence eerie. unnatural. Another thing that scared me.
I went back to me books. I promised Johnny, Steve, and Pony that I’d make notes for them so they’d have something easier to study off of.
I jumped as the phone rang. I wasn’t expecting anyone, but it is our house. I picked it up.
“Hey Buddy, something wrong?” I asked.
“Your home now?” He asked in disbelief.
“Yeah, some sorta law against that now or something I should know about?” I asked.
“No, it’s just not usual. You’re usually not in until at least midnight, even though your curfew is eleven thirty.”
“Aww, c’mon Buddy. You and I both know no one can get home by then.” I told him.
“So were you just calling to see who was where?”
“Yeah, I was wondering who was home and if there was anything that was planed for dinner.”
“Junior’s out with his kin, Maddog’s working late shift, Twin’s gotta date, and I’m sure your aware of your wife’s current location.” I told him.
“Anything you want me to pick up?”
“Chines?” I asked.
“You aren’t getting any meat.” He warned.
“I’m more than aware of that, mom. But I figured since The Fortune Cookie had such great fried rice, noodles, and a veggie chowmen. Why not?”
He laughed and said, “I got ya’, don’t worry.”
“How long before your home?” I asked almost desperately.
“Uhh, half hour. And I’ll come with food.”
We both laughed lightly.
“Hurry up.” I said.
He hung up and so did I.
Eating Chines with my second brother. Not a bad way to spend a Monday night.
He got back in thirty-five minutes.
“Hey.” He said coming in a bag of papers to work on in one hand, chines take out in the other.
“Lier.” I said.
“What?” He asked confused as he set everything down.
“You took thirty-five minutes.” I told him not looking up from my work.
“Sorry I didn’t account for traffic.” He said as he took off his coat.
“Your supposed to account for everything, you’re a lawyer.” I told him.
“And you’re a fifteen-year-old who needs to stop questioning every authority that there is.” He said loosening his tie and sitting down.
“Can’t do that, Bud. I’m a greaser, and I’m almost sixteen.” I pointed out.
“Don’t remind me.” He groaned.
“Too late.” I giggled.
“What you workin’ on?” He asked.
“Study notes for the guys.” I told him closing my note books.
“Think Junior’ll let me drop out after I pass these exams with flying colours?” I asked leaning against my piano.
“What’s up with you dropping out?” He asked.
“I know the stuff, Buddy. You know that. I guess, I just don’t wanna waste my time doing something I already know how to do by heart when I could be working to help with bills and stuff.” I said.
“Kat, you don’t worry ’bout that. That’s our job. Not your’s. Your fifteen, you should be worrying about boys, cloths, your future. Stuff girls your age are worrying about.” He told me.
“I can’t.” I told him.
“And why not?” He asked.
“I’m not gonna worry about boy’s ’cause they lead to nothin’ but trouble. Stacey, Grandma, and everyone’s countless girlfriends have tried to get me into fashion, but when you’re running around with a bunch of guys playing foot ball, jeans are a hell of a lot better than a mini skirt, and just like everyone else in this neighbourhood, my future involves me staying here. Buddy, you know me, I can’t worry about stuff every other girl worries about.” I told him.
“You already do,Kat. And you don’t realize it.” He said. I looked at him like he just grew a second head.
He laughed before continuing, “Your weight. Your always so concerned about it if you feel you’re half a pound over weight you’ll starve yourself for days. The worst part is, it isn’t healthy.”
“I’m over that. And you know I’ve never eaten very much.” I told him.
“Yeah, come eat now before it’s cold.” He ordered.
“Yes sir.” I said and got up to sit next to him. We said grace and ate while watching a movie on tv. It was a good night overall.