Rubber Band

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Oliver: Cozy

"Wow," Oliver scoffed, shaking his head in pure, utter astonishment, "Nothing's changed."

His father chuckled, wobbling his way through the front doorframe whilst carrying two large suitcases into the corridor, "Well, it is the same house, Oliver."

Oliver smirked and shrugged, stepping out of the way, allowing his father more room to place the suitcases, adjusting his own duffle bag that rested on his shoulder. He hadn't needed anything as big as his mother's or father's five items of baggage; a mere duffle had sufficed.

He wasn't much of a collector.

"Go ahead and unpack Ollie," His mother smiled as she entered the hallway as well, watching diligently as my father carried bags to and from the car's trunk. "The moving truck should be here any minute now. You may want to get situated before all the heavy lifting."

Oliver beamed, as his mother winked, and quickly nodded, sprinting towards the staircase and climbing the steps two at a time, anxious and excited, flying in the direction of his room, recognizing every inch of his childhood home even without any furniture.

Rounding the corner, passing what had always been his bathroom, where he learned to brush his teeth, wash his face, brush his hair, he came upon the small, single square that used to be where he slept, played video games, watched television, stacked blocks, drove around plastic cars, messed about with action figures. He could still see it, in the midst of a bare, white room, the slope of his tiny race car bed, the bulky box of his old, tolerable TV set, the lines of wooden rectangles posing as his shelves, bearing his soccer trophies and medals, his Superman collectibles and Batman comics. He used to be the absolute perfect representation of an average, third grader, just trying to fit in.

Who knew what he was now.

With a small laugh of disbelief, he tossed his duffle bag onto the plain, wooden frame of his makeshift bed, of which would soon become more significant once given a mattress and duvet.

"Cozy," His sister's voice rang out from behind him and he twisted in his position, grinning at her from over his shoulder.

"It used to be," He chuckled, observing the thick white layer of paint clouding his walls. So plain, so dull. Something would have to be done about that.

"You scared?" Rosalie suddenly asked, taking a step further into the harshly vacant room.

"Of what?"

"I don't know. Being back?"

"Sure," he shrugged, "a bit."

"Why?" Her voice was timid, shy and petite as though weary of asking an innocent question.

Oliver cleared his throat and sighed, lowering himself down onto the spidery, wooden frame of what used to be his bed, "I'm scared of seeing people I know, I think. What if they don't recognize me? Or remember who I am?"

Rosalie giggled, shaking her head as she peered down at her older brother, grinning at his nonsense, "How could they forget you? You're Oliver Emerson."


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