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Honey, If You're Still Around...

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The soundtrack to my life would be never ending.


Music is my life.


Everything that happens to me can be explained in song.


I am musically incapable, but many people aren't.


These people are my gods.


If my life was a playlist, it would be constantly changing. The reason there is so much music in the world is because there's so much going on.


The past few months haven't been especially easy.


They've actually sort of blown.


But it's over, and I don't know what's next.


But what I do know is that music will somehow be a part of it.

-



My door creaks when it opens. It's loud and ear-splitting, but no one but me seems to notice. Not even my mom, when she whips my bedroom door open every morning to wake me up. This morning is no exception.


I'm awake, like I always am when my mom comes in to wake me up. I just pretend I'm asleep because I like it when she comes and pushes my hair out of my eyes and kisses my forehead. I feel protected. I feel peaceful.


As my mom is walking across my bedroom, the floorboards make no sound. When my mom sits on the edge of the bed, it only slightly leans towards her. My mom is paper thin, and I've never known why.


'Leslie, honey, it's time to wake up,' my mom says, pushing my hair out of my eyes. She leans towards me, and kisses my forehead.


I slowly open my eyes, and smile. 'Good morning,' I say, my voice scratchy (as usual.)


'Good morning,' my mom says, and gets up to walk out. 'I made a fresh pot of coffee for you. If you want to get in the shower, you should probably get in now.'


I push the comforter off my chest and slowly get out of bed. When I get off the bed, it seems to inflate, like it's happy I'm not on it any longer. When I walk across my room, the floorboards creak.


I'm not fat. I'm average. But my mom isn't.


And like I said, I've never known why.

-



I turn on the shower, and slowly strip off my clothes. I pull the curtain shut, and let the boiling water burn my skin. I shampoo and condition my hair, lather up and rinse off, and then I just stand there. When I lift up my hand, I can barely see it because the room is congested with steam.


The hot water eventually runs out, and I smile. My father won't get any hot water.


When I go back into my bedroom, my mom is sitting on my bed, and she looks up, startled, when she sees me walk through the door. 'Sorry, I'll leave,' she says, and gets off the bed.


'No, it's okay. What's wrong?'


'Nothing's wrong, I'm just sitting.'


'In my room?' I ask.


'What's so strange about that?' my mom asks, smiling nervously. She obviously doesn't want an answer.


'There are plenty of other places to sit in the house, mom. Seriously, everything's fine?'


'Everything's fine,' my mom says, and walks quickly out of the room.


'What's going on?' I ask myself, once I shut the door.


I don't know the answer.



-



A few seconds later, my phone rings. I'm happy for the distraction. The caller ID says 'Boyfriend.'


I pick up. 'Hello?' I say.


'Hey,' he says. Just the sound of his voice makes me weak in the knees.


'It's seven o'clock,' I say, not really knowing why.


'Did I wake you?' he asks. But before I have the chance to answer, he keeps talking. 'I thought you got up at six thirty.'


'I do,' I say, desperate to change the topic. 'What do you need?'


'I just wanted to say hi.'


'Hi,' I say, smiling.


'So, I got the cheat sheets.'


'You're an ass,' I say sarcastically.


'What are you talking about?' he says.


'You say, 'oh, I called to say hi,' but all you want to tell me is that you stole the cheat sheets that can get us expelled.'



'They can't just get us expelled. They can also skyrocket our grades in English.'


'I really don't want to get in trouble,' I say.


'Since when have you cared about getting into trouble?'


'I don't know. It's just that it seems like we have a lot to lose.'


'Come on, be spontaneous! Take a chance.'


'What happens if we get caught?'


'Then we get expelled, or at least suspended.'


'And that's okay with you?'


'Honey, if you're still around, anything's okay with me.'


'Keep it in your pants,' I say, laughing.


'You wish,' he says, and hangs up.


Its funny how sometimes people recite a line from a song without knowing it. Keith had never heard 'Lullaby For Scout in 10 Years' before, but he said it.


That one sappy sentence led me to believe he loved me.


I guess I fell right into his trap.





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