Chapter Twenty Two
The bowling gathering went surprisingly well. There were more people there than I expected, including the girl from my math class, Nelly.
We split into two teams, the boys vs. the girls, and of course, to no surprise to myself, I sucked ass at bowling. Every shot I kept shooting just ended up in the gutter, it was so embarrassing, why did I even agree to this? At that point Daniel got upm from his seat and stood right behind, attempting to show me proper form.
“See that’s your problem! The ball is too heavy for you!” He says taking the 14 pound bowling ball out of my hands. Thank goodness, my right hand was starting to hurt from carrying it.
“David, could you get me a six pound ball from the desk?” Without another word, David did as commanded.
Daniel helped me get my first strike of the game, finally. But by coincidence or pure chance, I dunno, but Lacey and Nelly now needed help with their bowling formation and were asking Daniel to show them how to bowl properly.
The thing about bowling is that it’s quick to get boring after a short while. So on the second round, we all decided to go for pizza afterward.
All in all it was so much fun, everyone was nice to me and some of the girls even seemed to genuinely like me, at least I hoped they did.
Even Lacey, the red haired girl from lunch who wasn’t so keen on me at the beginning, now seems a little warmer towards me. As we sat by each other, we just started talking, we had more in common then I thought, her mother died of breast cancer about three years ago. But Lacey at least got to know her mom, and yet I knew it was still harder than anything I had to go through. I’d rather have a limited time of knowing my mother, than not knowing her at all, and because I hardly knew her, I didn’t experience the same level of loss that Lacey did.
It was strange, having someone I wasn’t even sure liked me open up to me about their past.
At the pizzeria, I sat with the girls in one table while the guys sat at the table adjacent to us. It was nice, even for a brief moment, I felt like I was a part of something, I felt like this was what it must feel like to have girlfriends. Granted, even though I had trouble relating to them in some aspects, they didn’t let me feel left out.
They even invited me to some of their future parties, weed sessions, and sleepovers. Ashlin was currently in cosmetology class and she wants to give me a proper makeover one of these days, Lord knows I need it.
It was 9:15 PM when we finished eating, and while everyone else left to go smoke weed at this creek, Daniel instead drove me home. I felt bad, he could be hanging out some more with his friends but instead he had to drive me home.
When we got home, I honestly expected him to just drop me off and scurry away to the creek, but instead he stayed put.
“I guess I’ll let you go now, let you catch up to your friends.”
“They can wait, I’m in no hurry.”
“Oh, okay then.”
“I hope you don’t mind me asking Angeline, but, where is your mom?”
I paused, “I never knew my mom, she died of breast cancer when I was two.”
“Do you have any siblings?”
“Nope. It’s just me and my dad, no cousins, no grandparents, no one else.”
“Really? I’m an only child too, but I’ve been surrounded by a triad of family members my whole life. I certainly never grew up alone.”
“That must be nice. I wished I had more family, especially a mother figure. I had to work out the girl stuff on my own.”
“Did you move around a lot?”
“Kind of, but I spent the majority of my life in Chicago.”
“And how long do you plan to stay here? Or is this just a temporary place for you as well?”
“As of right now, I’m not sure, hopefully it’s not temporary though, this is very quickly becoming the best school I’ve ever gone to. Maybe my dad will stay, but I’ve always wanted to go to med school to become a doctor.”
“A doctor huh? Why a doctor?”
“It’s what I see myself doing, I want to help people. I know it’s an incredibly cliché answer, but it’s true. What about you? What do you want to do?”
“Oh I’m just going to take over my father’s business after getting a degree at the local college.” He said indifferently.
“But is that what you want to do?”
He looked perplexed by my question.
“It’s what my family has been doing for generations, it’s what’s expected of me.”
“What is it what you want to do?”
Daniel stayed silent, I could tell he was taken aback and didn’t know how to respond.
“If you could choose, what would you do?” I asked him again.
“No one’s ever asked me that, so I’ve never even entertained the idea, but, hypothetically speaking, I’d love nothing more than to see the world. Last year I practically begged my parents to let me go on a mission trip to Mexico. It was only a week but it was the best time of my life, and the only time I ever left the country, left the state of Washington really.”
“I think you should do it then. See the world first, before you slave yourself to your work for the rest of your life.”
Daniel smiled halfheartedly, “it’s not that easy, my wants, my happiness, or even what I have to say doesn’t mean anything to my father. He’s made sure I knew that my entire life.”
“I’m sure he’ll be angry at first but he’ll come around.”
Daniel shook his head, “you don’t know my father. I may be his flesh and blood, but he’d have no problem getting rid of me, something I suspect he’s been wanting to do for a long time. Plus I couldn’t do that to my people, I couldn’t be so selfish.”
I’m guessing he was close with his father’s employees?
“Why would he ever try to get rid of you?!” You’re literally perfect, I wanted to say.
“My father and I don’t see eye to eye on almost everything, I don’t plan to run the pa-company the same way he does. If it was up to him he’d have traded me for my cousin, the ideal son. It became futile always trying to fight for his approval, knowing I would never have it. Knowing I would never match up to my cousin, I’m used to it though.”
I stared at him for a moment, studying him.
“He underestimates you, your dad, he underestimates you immensely… and I know one day you’ll take him by surprise. You know what? I think you should let him underestimate you.”
He smirked at me, “wow, who knew you were such an evil genius?”
I giggled, “no, I just pretend like I know what I’m talking about, take it with a grain of salt.”
“And what about you?”
“What about me?”
“Why do I have a feeling people severely underestimate you too? Even you underestimate you.”
“No underestimation here, I’m just lame.”
“Nah, Cat Lady, there’s more to you than meets the eye, I know it.”
I smiled at him, “if only.”