Home Can Be You

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Chapter 11

I always wondered, how can the time stop for someone or anyone at all? I finally got my answer the moment I opened the front door. I got a surprise that I did not expect. None of us did. I froze in my place and mom, dad, Andro, and Elara bumped into my back. They groaned but shut their mouths when they saw him.

He was standing there like it was the most natural thing ever for him to be waiting for us. His smile was blinding but it was blindingly beautiful. My big brother finally came home. “Nolan!” I screamed and jumped into his arms. I hugged him tightly because it had been a long time since I last felt his touch. The army stole all the precious time from us to be together but he was finally home.

He stroked my hair. “Hey, sugar pie! I missed you. You are a grown beautiful lady now.” He whispered in my ear and I smiled widely. I let go of him and stepped aside to let my family have their moment with him too. Andro walked closer with a tender smile. He missed his bro alright.

“Bomba” Andro called for Nolan by his nickname and they bro-hugged each other. Nolan loved The Lion King a lot and his favorite character was Bomba so the name got stuck with him.

“Hey there, Boba” Nolan called Andro by his nickname and we all chuckled. The name Boba came from Elara when she was an infant, we searched for its meaning and found out that boba in Hebrew meant doll and until this moment, we weren’t sure if that was a mere coincidence or on purpose so we went with the flow and called him that too. “You’ve grown taller, again... I will not allow it if you become taller than me!” He joked and they let go of each other.

Nolan looked down and opened his arms for Elara. Once she saw that, she jumped with a cute giggle. “Ahh, my teddy bear! You are so cute!” He kissed her forehead and spun her around. It was a very cute moment, so I recorded it. Memories should be treasured. Mom and dad came closer and they both embraced their eldest son. We all missed him so much and we thought that he was supposed to be home in three months or so. He was home early but I didn’t really care for that so I didn’t question him.

Dad did care for Nolan’s reason to be home this early so we all sat in the living room after we ate and chatted for a bit until my dad asked why he was home ahead of his designated time. Nolan looked at us with a kind of a sad smile? I wasn’t sure. His mood abruptly changed and I definitely felt it. “Um, I w-was released from the army three months ahead of time because, um, I finished all of my missions and my commander saw that I deserved to be home now. I’m thankful for him. No more months away from you guys. I’m finally home.” He finished with a small smile. I didn’t know why I felt that, but I had a distinctive feeling. I felt that he was lying but I didn’t want to say something, maybe I was just exaggerating things and I didn’t want to ruin the reunion.

“Great Bomba, now, let’s play chess,” Dad suggested because he knew that the boys can get competitive when they play that game. Mom, Elara and I sat on a couch aside and watched them play in silence. They were too focused to notice that I was behind Nolan’s chair, waiting for the perfect moment to attack. I glanced at mom and she gave me the thumbs up and I screamed. Let’s just say that it was the best reaction I ever received from someone I surprised.

“Why?” He asked once he calmed down and we all stopped laughing. I looked him dead in the eyes and said. “Welcome home!”

The next day went by pretty quickly and when Franky, Emilia, Jace, Rick, and Levi knew about Nolan being home they insisted on meeting him. Andro gave me a questioning glance and I returned it with the -I have no idea- look and just agreed to their request. On our way home, I questioned the girls about their reason and Emilia replied: “The good looks genes run in your family so he must be handsome as well. We want to confirm it!” Franky smiled evilly and I laughed. They were hopeless but they wouldn’t be disappointed because we all knew that Nolan had good looks and no one could deny it.

“Nolan, we are home and we brought our friends,” I said as soon as I opened the front door. Mom and dad decided to take Elara to a park to give us some space and we appreciated it. We all entered and Nolan came down to meet us.

He gave us a wide smile and ruffled my hair. “Hey guys, I’m Nolan. It’s so nice to meet you” He introduced himself and the girls pinched my back. I jumped and glared at them. Franky came closer to me and whispered: “You didn’t tell us he was that hot!” I sighed and guided them inside the living room. After they introduced themselves to my brother, we decided to watch a horror movie. I liked them but Emilia certainly did not. “No! Please don’t!” She begged us but I grabbed her shoulders and we stepped aside.

I slapped her cheek lightly and sighed. “Hey, what’s wrong with you?” I asked and she gave me a puzzled expression. “It’s a chance for you to get closer to Jace! Don’t be an idiot and sit next to him. I will make Rick sit next to Franky.” I countered and she nodded, finally understanding where I was going with this. I turned and looked at their seating arrangement. It was stupid. I grabbed Rick and made him sit between Franky and Andro. Then, Emilia between Jace and I. The rest sat on the floor. I texted Andro and told him to push Rick more to Franky’s side and he grinned and texted back: It’s about to get interesting!

After about half an hour through the movie, the scary parts began to appear. We heard Emilia’s screams and I glanced at her to see her crushing Jace with her tight grip on his arm. I looked at his face and saw him blushing. Awe bless his soul! I sneaked my phone and took a picture for teasing later. I then looked at Rick and Franky and I was astonished to see Rick hiding his face behind Franky’s back. I saw her trying not to laugh and also took a picture to blackmail him later. “Rick! It’s on your head!” I yelled and he screamed very loudly which made Nolan, Levi and the rest jump. We burst out of laughing and he gave me the stink eye.

“Andro, someday... Your sister will be dead by me if this ever gets outside this room!” He threatened and we all laughed more. His face was priceless but what amazed us the most was Franky’s serious face.

She tapped his shoulder and he looked at her. She gave a slight smile but then it turned into a glare. His face paled and I waited impatiently for the next move. “Man up!” And she slapped the back of his head. The next few moments were filled with laughter and I got the hiccups from it. It was a lovely evening and luckily, I got everything on camera. As I said before, memories should be treasured.

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