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Family Expectations

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“So tell me Jonathan, what are you doing now?” asked Aunt Linda, carefully sipping from her glass. What it held was unknown, whether it be tea, or coffee, or some other drink. Perhaps it held nothing at all, and the elderly woman simply used it to appear regal and intimidating. But, she did not need a cup to achieve that.
“Um, I’m involved in the police force actually,” Jonathan mumbled, unable to stare anywhere but at the floral rug in front of him.
“Police force, really? I’ve always fashioned it rather crude work myself,” the aunt mused, her eyes raking over the young man’s gangly, awkward body. Jonathan’s mother, a plump woman named Emily, shot her son a murderous glare from behind Linda Beaumont’s seat. Jonathan pretended not to notice. “Do tell me, specifically what department do you belong to?” she inquired.
“Well, um, mainly protection services mostly.” Jonathan could feel beads of sweat form on the bridge of his nose, on his armpits and back of his neck, and wished someone could open a window.
“Really? What are protecting?” Aunt Linda was like a snake, leading him willfully into her trap. It was everything Jonathan could take to not run from the room.
“Well, at the moment I’m working at the Hill Grove shopping center.”
“Oh, so you’re a mall security guard. I see. You weren’t qualified for anything more?” Finally, the snake had bounced.
“Well, Johnny’s been quite busy, with college and everything. I think it’s a fine job for the boy, at least for the moment,” said Emily hurriedly, quickly silenced by a cold look from her sister.
“Yes, I suppose it is fine work for him,” narrowing her eyes slightly, Aunt Linda said, taking a sip from her glass again.





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