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Wonderfully wrong

My parents split about a month ago, and I am so thankful for that because I would have never met him. After the divorced my dad and I moved to the country, a quiet place for him to think, about the heart break. She left her him for a very good friend of his, not only was the man his friend he was his business partner. Which you can imagine, my dad sold his portion of the business. I hate that I had to leave my best friends, but I felt bad for my dad. I agreed to go with no problem; I loathed my mother for breaking up the family, and breaking my father’s heart.
We moved to a very small town, and any civilization, other than our neighbors, from our house is 12 miles. From our old house to the new is 400 miles. I felt so far from home, and I am glad this all happened during summer, so I didn’t have to go to school, and deal with other irritating people. Anyway, it was a long drive, but it was so exciting pulling into the new house with the U-Haul dragging behind.
That night I had pretty much had my room set up. I despised it, but knowing my dad we would be out of here in no time. The color my room was grey, and white, really dull. I really didn’t feel like interior decorating though, so I just fell asleep praying my dad wouldn’t come in my room and depress the area even more. My heart really went out to him; he needed someone, so I guess that someone can be me.
The next day I walked out of the house, and looked around at the emptiness, I felt like this is where daddy wanted to be because this is how he felt, empty. I walked off the porch steps, and out into this different world. It was nothing like the city. As I walked around I saw a house in the distance, it was adequate, it looked big enough the house was in top shape. Suddenly a boy taps my shoulder and I turn around, he holds out his hand, “I’m Jack. I see you’re new here, I live right over there,” and he pointed to the house I was looking at. I shook his hand and said, “I’m Charlotte, nice to meet you.” He smiled, “So how old are you?” I knew when he asked that question he was checking me out, or was about to, if I was at the age for him to. I replied, “Fifteen.” He said, “We’re almost the same age I’m sixteen.” He smiled, and I returned it to him. We said our good byes, and returned to life.
That night I walked outside and noticed a hammock. I looked up and the stars were dazzling, so I decided to lie down and watch them. I lay down and looked up; I was amazed they were so beautiful. The summer night gave me a bit of a chill and my teeth started to chatter. Then Jack walked up out of nowhere, “You cold?” He lay down beside me, and got a bit close. He sighed, “You know, it’s not that out here.” I wandered how he knew I disliked it, but I guess it was the right moment. No one could hate this view. He started naming constellations, and showing me when a satellite came around. We laughed about our lives. Then, my father called my name. I said, “I gotta go, bye!” and ran away. He yelled, “See you tomorrow. “
I went to sleep that night, nervous of the next time I would see him, thinking about what to say, what I have said, what I should have done, and if he was thinking about me.
The next day, I walked outside and walked near a tree. I had never climbed a tree before, so I thought I would attempt it. I put my hand on the first branch and my foot on trunk, but I slipped. I tried again, but I slipped. Then Jack came up behind me and said, “Have you ever climbed a tree before?
I replied in hopelessness, “Nope.” I tried to pull myself up again and made it halfway before I started to slip, then he pushed me up, by my legs and I sat on the branch. He walked around the tree and pulled himself up and climbed only a little bit higher than I did. He started to climb really high and he stopped every now and then to instruct me where to go. I finally reached the branch I was sitting on, and sat beside him panting. He sat there and said, “We should build a tire swing.” I said, “I have never had one.” He smiled, “Time to build one.” He climbed down a few limbs and jumped down. I climbed down as carefully as I could. I came upon a branch that kinda cracked when I stepped on it. I fell, but he stayed under the tree calm and caught me. Unfortunately, we both fell. We laid side by said and laughed. He told me to stay here while he went to go get the rope and tire.
He got back and climbed the tree and tied the rope. He jumped down, and tied the rope to the tire. He pushed down on the tire three times, and said, “Get on.” I did and he swung me. I laughed when he tried to jerk me off. Then we sat down under the tree. He said, “I wander if I have missed out living here.” I reassured, “No I missed out living there. Here, is where kids really live. They can go outside and play every day after school. I grew up walking to and from school, and waiting for my parents to come home. I wish I would have grown up here.” He smiled, “It’s not too late.” We sat there and talked for hours and laughed. Then the sun started to go down, after laughing at a joke he told about his father when he drove for the first time. He said, “You should have seen my father’s eyes when he drove home that day.” We laughed. He looked up at me, “Charlotte, I don’t think I could just be your friend.” I smiled, “Then what do you want to be?” He said nothing he just grabbed my arm and kissed me. When we pulled away, he stared at me smiled and raised his eyebrow, “Catch my drift?” I laughed, “Yeah.” Then I heard my dad scream in the house. I raced into the house with Jack behind me.
He was lying in the floor with blood all over him, and a bloody knife in the floor. He yelled, “Call an ambulance!” Jack ran to the phone. I said, “Daddy, what happened.” He said, “That’s not important right now.” I got some gauze out of the medicine cabinet above him, and I helped him up to sit on the toilet. I wrapped up his arm as Jack walked in and said, “They are on their way.” He sat there and covered his face as they walked in to get him. I followed him in the ambulance and took a seat next to him; I looked back at Jack and said, “Aren’t you coming?” He said, “I will meet you there.” They shut the ambulance doors and said once again, “Daddy what happened?” I touched his leg and he squealed. The paramedic said, “He broke his leg, hun.”
At the hospital I sat in the waiting room waiting for Jack. I was so confused, what happened to my dad? Then the doctor walked up to me and said, “He tried to commit suicide, he jumped down the stairs hoping to break his neck. He crawled to the bathroom to finish the job, but didn’t hit any major veins. I’m sorry, but he will have to go through numerous psychiatric departments.” I turned around shocked as he walked away, but there was Jack. He heard all of it. A tear rolled down my cheek as I hit the floor. He leaned down and put me in a nearby chair. I said, “I should have been with him. He would… He would have... been safe.” He sat beside me and I laid my head on his chest and he held me, as I cried.
I walked into his room and he was asleep from the pain medicine. I sat down in the chair and Jack stood at the end of the bed. He woke up, and saw me, “Oh, Charlotte.” I said, “Daddy, let’s not talk about it now.” He started to cry, “Honey, I am so sorry. I wasn’t even thinking of you.” Holding back my tears, “Daddy, please let’s not talk about it.” He looked at Jack. “Who are you?” I said, “This is Jack. He is our neighbor, and we have been friends since yesterday.” He said, “Could you take her home?” He nodded.
It was cloudy outside the hospital; it started to sprinkle a little bit. Of course, his car was a jeep, and since its summer the hood was off. I jumped in the front seat, and put my head in my hands as he put the cloth cover on. He got in the driver’s side and didn’t even look at me just forward at the steering wheel. He looked down, “Uh listen, what we kind of had going for this past day, I think it’s a bad time, for you. Even if it was just a kiss, we had a friendship, and that’s all you need. You’re probably going to leave, and if you come back to visit I’ll be here.” I turned to him, “No, I am not going anywhere. I live here. Why would I leave?” He looked at me, “Your dad’s in the hospital he tried to commit suicide, and the doctor said he would have to go through a lot of therapy before he goes home. You can’t live by yourself.” He started the car and we drove off.
When we got to the house it was pouring down rain, and it was dark. We barely spoke in the car. Before I got out of the car I invited him in. He got out too. We ran into the house, without a word. I asked, “Are you mad?” He looked at me, “No. Why would I be?” The phone rang. I ran to answer it. “Hello?” I said. The cruel reply was, “Charlotte? It’s your mother. I will be there to get you in the morning.” I hung up the phone. She wouldn’t care, as long as I knew and dreaded morning. I walked into the living room, where he was. I sat down next to him, “I am leaving tomorrow.” He stood up, “I figured. I don’t know why I came in; I think I am going to go.” “Please don’t.” I reached out to grab his arm. He resisted. He looked back, “I really have to go.” I shouted back, “This is my last night, and you don’t even want to be around me. What did I do?” He turned around, “Nothing. I just don’t want to get attached now that you’re leaving.” I said, “I will come back. Please, stay for my last night.” I gave him face that he couldn’t resist. He sat down, “Just for a little while.” I said, “I can’t believe he tried to commit suicide, but there was always one thing I would say about people who try, its either you do it or not.” He said, “I can’t imagine what that would be like. It was surprising, right?” I replied, “I woke up that morning, and I didn’t even speak to him, so I would say it was normal.” He laughed, but I was serious.
I said, “I don’t want to say good bye.” He said, “We have too.” I said, “I am still confused about our relationship. When I leave will we just be acquaintances, just that? This is been the most excitement and adventure I have ever had in two days. I moved here met you, climbed a tree for the first time, built a tire swing, made a really good friend, kissed you, my dad tried to commit suicide, I went to the hospital learning he has to be through a lot of therapy, and now I’m here with you, and I don’t know what to expect next.” He said, “Then don’t, just wait. The best part of life is waking up not knowing what is going to happen, and guess, but you soon figure you’re completely wrong. It never is normal, life. It either goes wonderfully right or horribly wrong.” Then his cell phone rang and he answered it.
He listened for a moment, then said, “Ok, bye. That was my parents, I have to go home.” I said, “I don’t even know how to say good bye to you.” We both stood up. We walked out the screen door. He hugged me, “God, I am going to miss you.” I started to tear up, “I am going to miss you, too.” He left after that. I watched him drive off in the dark rain.
The next day we loaded up a few suit cases. I wanted to make myself think this was a vacation, and I would be back soon. I would come home and Jack would run to hug me and pick me up and spin me around. Daddy would be happy, and have a job. On the ride back to Massachusetts I thought of how things could have been. Like he said things either go wonderfully right or horribly wrong. I never really talked to mom; she stayed on her cell phone. My dad hated that about her; if some form of technology was around she was glued to it.
I walked to my room, it was different. She obviously used it for storage. I thought, nope she didn’t miss me. I moved a few boxes and dove into bed.
I must have slept for a real long time. I woke up with a cold hand placed on my back, it was my mother. She said, “Charlotte, wake up honey. You have slept long enough.” She pushed my long blonde hair out of my face. I said in a quiet voice, “Go away.” She said, “Fine! Sleep your life away!” and slammed the door. I was alone. Other than my distant mother, no one was around. Even though, I was in an apartment in Boston, I had never felt so far from earth. It was quiet. I hated the fact that this could be my life for a while. I thought anywhere but here, with her.
I got up and eased to the mirror. I saw a girl with blonde rat’s nests, pale, and sad. I thought this can’t be me, why did I let a stupid town and a stranger turn me into this?
That night, I grabbed a few bags only things I would need. I was going home and no one was going to stop me. I creped out of my room, and there she was passed out on the couch with an empty bottle of gin on the floor. I grabbed some money out of her bag, she had 50$. I went to the bus station, and went back to Alabama. I hitch hiked to my house. I grabbed the key under the mat and went to my room.
I woke early the next morning. I walked to Jack’s house, and knocked on his door. His mother answered and said, “You are that Charlotte girl. I thought you went to live with your mother.” I lied, “Well, we came back to pick a few things up, and I never said good bye to Jack.” She opened her door, “I’ll go wake him up.” I stopped her, “Uh, no! I’ll go just go and talk to him myself, if that’s alright.” She nodded, “Yeah. Go down that hallway, and it’s the third door to your left.” I walked down the dark hall, and quietly entered his room, and sat down on his bed. The room was filled with trophies from football, and papers in stacks. He woke up when I touched his shoulder, it was warm. He turned on his back and saw me. His eyes widened, “Charlotte?” I smiled. He said, “You’re supposed to be in Boston.” I smiled, “I snuck out last night, stole fifty dollars, bought a bus ticket most the way, and hitch hiked the rest. I came here for two reasons, I missed you so much, and I was wandering if you would take me to see my father.” He agreed, “But first,” he said, he leaned up and put his arms around me, and kissed me. “I need to make sure we are on the same page.” I smiled, “Now we are.” He got of bed and pulled a shirt over his head. He grabbed the keys to his jeep, and we marched out to the car.
When we got to the hospital, daddy was asleep. I sat down on his bed, and said, “Daddy?” The nurse walked in and said loudly, “Good morning Mr. Gail. I have your breakfast for you.” He woke and saw me. “Charlotte, you’re supposed to be with your mother.” “I know daddy, I just had to make sure you’re ok.” I said. “I have to tell your mother to come get you now.” He said. I exclaimed, “Daddy, don’t make me go back there please!” He sighed, “Where are you going to go?” Jack’s mother walked in, “She can live with us until you are able.” He nodded, “You don’t have to do that.” She said, “I want to, Jack likes her a lot and she likes him or she wouldn’t have gone through all that trouble to sneak back here, for him.” He looked at me, “Honey do you want to do that?” “Yes!” I exclaimed. Jack hugged me.
That night he got a nail and some ink and we both got a star tattoo on our wrist to remind us of that day, that moment when he was right about, not just right wonderfully right about this place not being so bad. We both doubted it when I left, but that time we were wonderfully wrong.



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