Fractured

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“Oh my Lord!” I say.


“Dear Lord, could you stop complaining already?” my mom asks.


We have been sitting in this hot car, in front of this CVS forever! Uggh, my thighs and face are starting to itch. Can you be serious? I just got rid of a heat rash and now I’m about to get another one.


How in the world are my brothers asleep right now?


The longer we wait out here, the hotter the car gets. All of the product from my hair is melting down onto my face, in my eyes and mouth. You would think cocoa and shea butter would taste like cocoa and shea with a hint of butter. Let me tell you, it does not. Not at all. What is shea butter anyways?


I’m sure to my mom I’m being such a crybaby, but I feel like I’m being as reasonable as any child would in this situation. I watch more and more people coming in and out wishing he would just come out with baskets overflowing with like toilet paper, toothpaste, food, candy, just anything to explain why he is taking so long. Watching those automatic doors sliding open is irritating me, but I can’t stop looking just in case he comes out.
I see a man at the counter checking out. He looks like David. Big and muscular, bald, tatted all over. I think it might actually be him.


“Mom, is that him, at the register?”


He has a lot to check out, maybe it is him. It’s not though. Now I’m angry because I got my hopes up. I thought we were finally going to be able to leave, I’m tired of looking at this store and everything around it. Now I’m really praying that the next person that walks out would be him, but I count fifteen people that have walked out, not a single sign. I look at the clock, we’ve been here for an hour.


“But seriously though, how long does it take to get a few things inside a CVS then come back?” I ask my mom. She doesn’t respond so I decide to stop talking because she is obviously pissed.


He’s always doing ignorant things like this, that’s one of the reasons I don’t like him, no one in my family likes him but her. Like this one time we went over to his friend’s house and he told me and my mom to stay in the car, I was way younger then. We were sitting out there for like 30 minutes, then he came out the house.


“We’re going to go get some parts to fix his truck.” He told my mom.
“Please don’t take long,” she says to him, “I love you.”


He was gone for a long time. I remember watching the sunset and I thought it was the prettiest thing ever.
My mom was really angry. All I really remember is her cussing a lot and it was scaring me because I hate seeing her that mad. He makes her mad like that all the time, calls her all type of names. Ever since I can remember he’s always been very verbally and physically abusive, especially to us kids.


Then I asked her why we just can’t leave him, and she says because he took the keys. Now that I think about it, every time he’s the only one that gets out of the car he takes the keys.


“Did he take the keys?” I ask my mom.
“Obviously or we would have been gone a long time ago” she snaps.


The sun is still blazing but we opened the doors so it’s a little cooler in the car now, one of my brothers is awake, my mom’s still pretty heated, and still no sign of him. These are the times where I wish we weren’t so poor so she could at least have a phone to call him or call my grandpa so he can pick us up. We’ve lived with my grandpa my whole life so I’m pretty close to him. He buys my brothers and I everything.


“Mom, can’t we just-” I start to say.
“Okay, I’m beyond pissed off, the heat isn’t helping, and I know y’all are hungry just as much as I am,” my mom says. “Wake your brother up and come on.”


Before we start walking home we walk to the McDonald’s that is across the street so we can each get a water.
We’ve probably been walking for 20 minutes now. I’m tired, have been all day, and now my feet and back are going to be really sore tomorrow.


By the time we get home the sun is starting to go down, and the sun isn’t scorching any more. It must’ve taken maybe an hour to walk home. It’s still pretty warm, but it’s bearable. As soon as I step foot into the house I drop like a ragdoll on the couch, I’m extra tired now. Mom told me to get in the shower and I thought that would be a good idea because I’m sure I stink and my hair is a mess from sweating it out.


When I’m done I lay down in my mom’s bed and fall asleep.
“F*** you too David!” my mom exclaims, “I hate you!”
Well now I’m awake. I look at the clock, it’s 3:43am, I’ve only been asleep for like two hours.
“Dang.” I say.


She’s on the phone with him. They do this a lot. He’ll piss her off, then they’ll fight and cuss at each other, then they get back together. It never takes long for them to be dating again, usually the next day, the longest I can remember it takes is about a week.


She hangs up on him (happens every time too) puts the phone back, and comes and lays down. Literally the second she lays down the phone rings, I already know it’s him. She jumps up to get it because it’s a house phone, the other phone is in my grandpa’s room and he’s already asleep. If he wakes up then my mom and grandpa will start arguing, then most likely she’ll leave again going God knows where. I always worry if I don’t know where she is or if I know if she’s okay or not.


She pushes the end call button and sets the phone down next to her, we both know this is going to go on all night. Almost as fast as I think that last phrase, almost as if on cue, the phone rings again and again and again and again until I tell her to pick it up because I’m trying to sleep. So, she answers it.


Her room was the garage before but the people that lived here before us turned it into a room so the laundry room is in her room. There isn’t a door exactly, but there is a really heavy blanket in the doorframe because the laundry room gets warm and her room is always cold.


She goes in there after she answers it. I can hear everything she is saying because unfortunately a blanket is not soundproofed. I wish it was though so I wouldn’t know and wouldn’t have heard some of the things I have. Since I have learned from experience, I put in my headphones and put on some music so I can’t hear.


When she comes back in the room they are off the phone and I can tell things are back to my family’s version of normal and she’s in a better mood-ish.


After she lays down and is almost asleep I ask her where he was. I figured out a long time ago if I want to figure something out without her getting mad or I want to ask her for something to ask her when she’s almost asleep.


“He left with Anne.” she says.


I was going to ask why didn’t he drop us off at home first and who Anne was because I hear her name a lot. Then I remembered I don’t care about where he was or anything about their relationship so I just roll over and go to bed.






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