It’s been a few days now, I still haven’t felt like talking to them. I’ve been waking up early and getting half my homework done before lunch then complete the rest. Today, Mom is supposed to grade this week’s work with Dad. It’s been rough. I can feel Mom’s glare whenever I walk into the room and Dad’s sad eyes. He hates when I go quiet but sometimes I just have no motivation to talk, like it takes too much energy or something.
When I come out of my room in the morning both Mom and Dad are sitting at the table talking with a cup of tea for them both and a third one too. That’s weird they normally aren’t up this early. Are we going to move again? Dad turns to look at me, he smiles sadly when he sees me. His eyes run over the slowly fading bruise and cut. “Come sit we need to talk to you about something.” I slowly make my way over and sit down.
“Your dad and I were talking. I really don’t have the time to teach you nor the patience for your stupid questions. You’ll be going to the school your dad teaches at. However, no making friends, no clubs, no sports, keep your grades average. I don’t want you standing out because you are failing but I don’t want you standing out because of perfect scores. Keep them at B’s and C’s. Your dad is going to sign you up today and get your uniforms.” She pauses and rubs her temples. “This is going against my better judgment. I say we still homeschool you. You better not screw up, I like it here. Today you won’t be doing any school work. I want to finish setting up the store.” She pauses and rubs her temples. “I’ll be leaving for a few days, but that doesn’t mean you can slack off. Once the store is organized your Dad has set up a gym in the basement you will be continuing on your self-defense.” Dad smiles and kisses my head then says he has to leave. He gives Mom a kiss then grabs his tumbler and lunch bag. This school must be really nice. He wears a dress shirt, slacks, nice shoes, and a belt every day. “Now go get dressed and let that dog out. Don’t forget your contacts and glasses.”
I go to my room and pull out black skinny jeans, and a pink sweater, then go sit them down on the bathroom counter. I put my contacts in and glasses on then pick up Apollo to take him outside. Once we are back I take a quick shower then head downstairs to the store. While I’m working on the research section of the store Mom comes down with a backpack and says goodbye before leaving in a cab. Didn’t even know this town had cabs.
The day goes by uneventfully after that. When Dad got home he told me I’ll be starting Monday and had a uniform for me. He said they’ll have more sent to the store. The uniform is kinda cute, it’s a blue plaid skirt, white dress shirt, school blazer, with black ballet flats. Dad makes a simple dinner and then helps me with Apollo’s training before we both go to bed.
It’s Saturday morning and Dad is in his workout outfit. “Go get dressed for working out and let the dog out. I’ll meet you downstairs.” I quickly follow his instructions and put on a black sports bra, tank top, and blue leggings. He’s running on one of the treadmills, we have two treadmills, one bike, and a large blue mat that covers a lot of the floor. I quickly stretch and then start my run. Dad and I spar for a few hours then cook lunch together. After lunch he lets me take the first shower then takes one after me.
We are in the backyard teaching Apollo commands and how to behave on leash when some teenagers walk by. They see my dad and wave at him then they see me slightly behind him and approach the gate. “These are the troublemakers at the school,” Dad whispers in my ear as he goes to meet them at the gate. I pick up Apollo and then follow after him. “Ekon, Derrick, and Edmund what are you three doing here?” Dad asks the three teenagers, I stand shyly behind Dad.
“We are picking up my sister from her work. It’s not a far walk from where we all live.” One of them speaks
“Who is this behind you Mr. Smith?” another teen asks, trying to peek around him. Before Dad can answer, however, Lalihia comes over.
“Why are you guys bothering Mr. Smith? It’s his day away from you guys, let's go.” She says pushing them away. Dad releases a sigh and we start back on his training. He is doing really well, Dad is a much better trainer than I am.
We spend the rest of the day watching movies while he grades assignments. Dad and I finally go to bed around 11, I slip on my matching baby blue pajama pants. After I wash my face and brush my teeth, I then pick up Apollo and put him on the bed.
“Arabella,” the same voice speaks but this time I can make more out. I am wearing a pink lacy pantie set and I can see the man’s forearm now. He leads me to the same lake as last time and disappears the same as last time. I stand there for a moment just breathing in the air. When I look at the water again the scene changes.
I’m in a closet, Mom and Dad are quickly packing bags. I don’t want to go though, we live right next to a cool park! Mom lets me go to it almost every day and play after school work of course. Suddenly, the door is quickly pulled open. Dad is standing there and he tells me we must hurry so that the bad men are close and picks me up into his arms. Mom pulls my coat through my arms and then takes me into her arms as Dad grabs the bags. She then runs to the cab and waits for Dad to put my booster seat down before buckling me in.
I wake up with chills running over my body. I must have been four or five in that dream. Dad hadn’t gotten in the car with us, he said he’d meet us at the airport. However, it wasn’t until a few days later that I saw him again. When I get out of bed Dad again is standing by the coffee maker but this time with a look of disappointment.
“You want to go get coffee from Starbucks?” He asks me, looking over at me. I nod my head in answer, yawing. “Great, go get dressed. I’ll take Apollo out while you get ready.” I quickly go back into my room and look into my closet. Black skinny jeans, a burnt orange shirt, gray bralette with matching panties, and my converses as well this is so cute! Mom has a thing about undergarments matching so she only buys them as matching. After I get dressed I put my hair into a fishtail braid and put my contacts in. Dad sees me and points to my face when I come out of my bedroom. Glasses! I run back in and get them.
“Can we take Apollo with us?” I ask him in a very quiet voice. Dad turns at the sound of my voice and instantly agrees. I put Apollo in my lap in the backseat when we get to the car.
When we get back Dad asks me to make sure we don’t have any packages here. I go to the front and see we have one from Hemsworth’s Private Academy. Must be more uniforms. The day goes by slowly and I finish my book, it wasn’t that good, the girl died in the end and the man got away free.