Chapter 7 – Gregory
I groan as I roll around on my bed, looking for a comfortable position. I can’t believe I told him about Frank and Bella! What in the world was I thinking?
Clearly, I wasn’t thinking, I told him things I had promised myself to never recount to anybody ever again! Besides my family and the officers that is, so why tell it to Taylor?
“Greg honey?” Mom’s face peeked around the door “Hon? You might want to get up now, certain people are here to see you.” Mom looked tired and anxious, making me sit upright.
“What is it, mom? Who are here?”
Mom bites his lip before shaking his head “Just get dressed comfortable honey; it’s going to be a long talk.” I get off the bed as mom disappears behind the door. I tug on some sweatpants as Lo’s favourite Lion King Song Hakuna Matata drift up the stairs. Chuckling I tug on my Hakuna Matata sweater, a gift from Lo for my birthday last year. He’s been obsessed with the Lion King or anything Disney really.
Lo’s happy giggle as me smiling as I make my way down the stairs, only to have it turn into a frown as I see two prison wardens sitting at the breakfast table. Mom wasn’t lying when he said it would be a long ass talk.
I glare at them as I sit down at the table, smiling slightly as mom puts a steaming plate in front of me. “Thanks, mom.” Zach grinned as he took a seat beside me with a steaming mug of coffee.
“So what brings you, wardens, here?” Mom demands “The Court has been very clear about that man contacting Greg or being anywhere close to him, so enlighten me what kind horrible situation justifies breaking the Courts order.”
I can tell mom is trying hard not to lash out at them, this isn’t the first time they visited us. I shudder as I remember the last time they visited us, telling me my biological mother had passed away in jail.
I just returned from Volleyball practice on a Friday afternoon, I was all hyped up for the competition on Saturday. We could become this season's champions if we win tomorrow’s game, it was a possibility; we were in our best form this season.
I frown as I noticed an unknown car sit in our driveway, my frown deepens as I open the door and there is nobody to greet me. Dumping my bag on the floor, I tug off my shoes silently padding around on sock covered feet to the murmurings coming from the home office. Being curious as ever; I noticed that the door isn’t fully closed.
I stay rooted to the spot as I hear mom raise his voice angrily “NO! Greg isn’t going there and that’s final!” Even a slam from his fist on the hard wooden desk reached my ears. “I will not have.... Have those people drag Greg into this! He has stated he had no interest to visit them, so why are you here saying he needs to go to her funeral? I don’t give a shit other family members want him there! As his parents, we say no!"
The way mom talks leaves nothing to the imagination who he’s talking about. My biological parents. What could they want now? An unknown voice answers mom’s angry questions “We understand Mr Chambers, but no matter what they are his family.”
Mom snorted “Family?! Family? Where were they when Greg was abused? Where were they when Greg was locked up in the collar for days? I tell you where they were! Nowhere, that is! They had no contact with either Frank or Bella since they had begun to abuse Greg and were still doing drugs.” Blinking, I noticed tears running down my face.
A sniffling sound was heard as mom appeared in the doorway and saw me standing there. “Oh, honey.” He looked worried as he slowly reached out to me.
I fling myself into his waiting arms “I don’t want to go! Don’t make me go!"Mom crushed me to his chest “Of course not honey, you don’t have to go if you don’t want to.”
Needless to say I was so out of whack the rest of the day and that following Saturday; I quit the team after we had lost the game. I felt like I had let down the team with my very shabby performance. Mom had told the coach what happened the day previous and I knew the team couldn’t use someone as emotional instable as me.
*Flash back end*
Dad’s hand on my head brought me back into the here and now. “Are you okay Querido?” I swallowed the last bit of breakfast down and nod my head. “Yeah I’m good dad.” I whisper, not managing to speak any louder with the lump that was lodged in my throat every time my biological parents come up in a conversation. The wardens are different once from the ones who came to tell me my mother had passed away. “Why didn’t you just write to us, or called?” Mom huffed annoyed, crossing his arms, knowing fully well how affected I would be by their visit. “Mr. Freeman insisted that he wanted to talk to Greg face to face.” The warden said. “Mr. Freeman is slowly dying and wishes to see his son one more time. Mr. Freeman has little time left and he wants to make amends.” I hold my hand in front of my mouth to keep my breakfast down; the warden’s gaze softens as he looked at me. For the wrong reasons though, I am not holding my hand in front of my mouth in horror as he thinks. “What do you say Greg? Do you want to visit him so you never have to see him again?” Mom asked, knowing I was feeling a little sick. “I don’t need to think about it.” I glare at the warden “I don’t wish to see him; I don’t care if he’s dying. I don’t think whatever he has to say will erase what he has done to me.” Dad squeezed my shoulders as mom got up and opened the kitchen door, a clear sign for the wardens to leave. “There is your answer gentlemen, now please leave.” With one last look at each other and me they get up and walk around the table to stop near me, holding out a small card. “Call this number if you change your mind.” He put it on the table seeing as I didn’t take the card from him and left through the door.
“Are you okay Greg?” I look to the side and see Lo stand there in his Lion King Onsie holding a Simba plushy. I smile slightly and ruffle his hair, making him pout at me. “I am Lo. I am.” As long as I repeat it in my mind I will be fine. Lo grins “Wanna watch the Lion King 2 with me?” He had somehow managed to get Nance watch the Lion King with him while I was talking to the wardens. Usually I am the one watching his Disney movies with him. “Sure thing bud, set it up. Do you want me to invite Syl over so we can all watch it?” Lo turns frowning, “I don’t know if we’re ready for that just yet.” His thoughtful responsible make my chuckle as it sounds as if they were in a relationship. “Think it over okay? We don’t want another Sean episode do we?” Lo’s face twisted in disgusts as I mentioned Sean. “No we don’t.” And he scuttles off to set up the DVD.
Several hours and Disney movies later, we were startled by the doorbell ringing. Lo and I looked at each other, neither of us were expecting visitors. A squeal and a thump answered who was expecting visitors. Rushing footsteps announced Nance’s presence. She checked herself once more in the hallway mirror before opening the door, greeting whoever was there. Lo was on my lap, we just finished watching Pocahontas. As several voices sounded from the hallway I concluded they must just want to hang out, since she would have told me if there was a group assignment. The voices stopped as they noticed me and Lo lounging on the couch, I saved half-heartedly as Nance introduced us. Getting up I take Lo with me despite his protesting. “Let’s get some lunch done huh little cub?” Lo’s playful squeak/roar was my answer that he agreed with me. “Well then let’s see what the jungle has to offer us.” I state as I make our way to the kitchen.
“I know you.” A slightly unknown voice says from behind me. Turning I am faced with one of Nance’s friends. He looked familiar, I just couldn’t place him. “Excuse me?” My eyebrows reached my hairline as he got in my face. “You’re Greg.” His eyes widened, “Well yes, I am.” I deadpanned, not really understanding his shock. “You’re Greg the Libero Chambers!” I flinch a little as he stated it with excitement. It’s been years since I have been on a Volleyball field. “Not anymore. I gave up Volleyball years ago.” He looked a little sad “I know, my brother never really found another Libero as good as you.” I stare at him; I am a little shocked, that I didn’t recognise him as Alster’s younger brother Kael. “You’re Kael McCloughlin, Alster’s little brother.” He beams at me as I finally recognise him, “I am indeed!” He grinned “I am sure Ally would be ecstatic to hear from you.” With one last smile directed at me and a wave at Lo he left the kitchen.
The rest of the day I was mulling over if I wanted to talk to Alster. My finger was hovering over his name on my phone. I shake my head, there is a possibility he had a new number, I knew my number is different from the one when I was still on the Volleyball team. Even if I called him, I have no idea what to talk about or say. I had followed our Volleyball teams’ progress; what Kael said was not true, since my absence the team had made it to the finales more times than when I was on the team. I think Kael just said that to be nice. It did awaken my slumbering desire to play Volleyball again.
The next day, I did something I haven’t done since junior year. I walked into the gym to watch the Volleyball team practice. I recognised a few faces but most were new to me. I recognised Alster, Derek, and Joseph from my old team and Kael as he waved at me from down the field energetically. I chuckled as he got smacked by his older brother for not paying attention before he notices me. I smiled awkwardly as Aster smiled and climbed up to me. “Kael told me he had spoken to you.” I stare at the people moving on the field, I forgot how intense Aster’s stare could be close up. “Yeah, he did. He was at my house yesterday hanging out with my sister.” A whistle was heard and Aster moved back down to the field. I watched until practice ended walking in the hall I was called out by the coach. “Chambers! What a surprise to see you.” The friendly pot-bellied man exclaimed as he slapped my shoulder. I winched slightly under the clap “Are you gonna try out for the team?” He looked at me in question, as he looks at the chart in his hands. “There is a spot for a Libero in the third string team if you’re interested. The try outside are next week’s Wednesday at noon.” I smiled slightly; glad it’s not first or second string.
“Okay, I will think about it. Thanks coach!” A last wave and I was gone through the gym’s double doors.