Only a couple days after the new year, I had to say goodbye to everyone else. I promised that I would come visit over spring break and some weekends, but it didn’t make leaving any easier. Nico and I hugged up until the very last moment, when I told him, “I really should go. I promised my mom that I would get home before lunch.”
He nodded and let me go, leaning forward to give me one last kiss. I knew that I was really going to miss that warm feeling when I left.
The next day, my mom woke me up early so that I could get ready for school. I knew how to get ready quickly, which she had apparently forgotten, so she woke me up way too early and I had a lot of time to play with Jacob before she drove me to school.
Since I hadn’t been in mortal school in the fall, my first day back was overwhelming. All the kids were still smaller than me, and they were all annoying. They only wanted to talk about TV shows and play dumbs games like “horses” at recess. Instead of playing with the kids, I ran for the whole half an hour. I decided that, the next day, I would do climbing to keep my arm strength up.
“Katelyn,” my teacher said at the end of the day.
I walked over to her desk and she smiled at me kindly. “I noticed that you played alone at recess.”
I nodded. “I didn’t want to play any of the stupid horse games.”
“Well, I know new games can be scary, but I think there are some people in the class who would love to be friends with you. Playing together at recess could be a good start.”
“Maybe you could try to make a friend tomorrow?”
I shrugged again. “My mom is probably waiting for me.”
My teacher smiled and let me go. I rolled my eyes as I left. She didn’t know anything about me. I didn’t need to be friends with any stupid mortals.
The weeks leading up to spring break were some of the hardest of my life-- only not really. They only felt that way, since I wasn’t very happy. Even though it was nice to be with my mom and Jacob, especially since Jacob was learning so many new things and could practice sword fighting with our Nerf swords now, Bob was constantly yelling at me for everything and I missed everyone at camp so badly.
Whenever Jacob did something new, I thought about Colton, Martin, Kayla, Tera, Kade, Isaiah, Kinley, Samuel, and Hailey. They would be doing so many new things while I was gone, too. I had already missed the quadruplets’ first steps, and now I would probably miss the twins’ and triplets’ too.
Finally, two days before spring break, Bob yelled at me for not “drying the dishes well enough” and I lost it. I screamed back at him, and the sink erupted, spraying him with water. Even with the Mist, the coincidence that the pipe had “burst” when I was angry was hard to explain away, and my mom and I knew that Bob didn’t buy it for a second.
“It was some sort of prank that she set up beforehand,” he decided the next day. “There must have been a string she pulled or something.”
“I really don’t think that that’s possible,” my mom said. “Honey, it was just one of those weird things that happens sometimes. You should let it go.”
“You let her get away with everything!” Bob yelled, turning to my mom, who pushed Jacob behind her. “She doesn’t clean her room when we ask, and you say, “She’ll do it now.” She doesn’t do well in school, and you say, “She has ADHD and dyslexia. It just takes longer for her to learn.” Well when is the help from this “special dyslexia school” going to kick in? Huh? And why is it okay for her to attack me with this water prank--”
“Bob, don’t be ridiculous,” my mom said, and Bob rushed at her.
I jumped between them and punched Bob in the stomach. He doubled over and snagged the collar of my shirt with the hand that he hadn’t pressed to his stomach. “You… You can’t stay here.”