The past few days went by as normal; it was currently Wednesday night and I was bringing some dishes down from my room. I was extremely excited for thanksgiving; we would be leaving in 1 week for 5 days and Lola was coming with us. As I reached the bottom of the stairs, I spot my dad angrily walking across the foyer.
“Why do you have all those dishes?” he questions when he spots me.
“Uh, I’m bringing them down to get washed, I had them in my room,” I explain.
“For fucks sake, why would you have 5 empty cups in your room. You’re such an idiot, why can’t you just bring them down when you are done with them?” He yells.
“Sorry,” I reply. His phone rings so I rush out of the way and to the kitchen. As I am putting my dishes in the dishwasher I can hear my dad yell from the other room.
“I don’t care, you figure out who the hell is doing this and where they are getting all my information!” He screams to whoever he is talking to on the phone.
“Hunny are you okay?” I hear my mom ask. I walk over so I can listen in. I’ll intervene if he starts to get violent.
“No, I’m not, somebody is going after me, 2 states Tammy. I have lost 2 states, all I have left are Arizona and Nevada. 3 of my associates just went missing. I’m livid when I find out who’s doing this they are going to pay.” My dad says.
“I’m so sorry to hear that, is there anything I can do?” My mom asks.
“Not now, maybe if you would’ve been fucking normal this past year things wouldn’t have gone so sideways,” My dad begins to direct his anger at her.
“Jeff, I’m sorry. I’m getting better, how about we go cool off, maybe go for a walk?” My mom says trying to calm him down.
“A walk? That’s not going to help. I need to find who’s been stealing my info, someone broke into our house and got everything off my computer. I have this place locked up tight, why didn’t anyone notice. It happened in the middle of the night, everyone but me was home. What the fuck Tammy. You have one job, make sure no one goes into my office, and you can’t even do that.” As he says this, I step into the room I can tell it’s escalating, I don’t want my mom to get hit.
As I enter, they both look at me. “Was it you? Did you go into my office and copy all the files?” My dad asks.
“No, I wouldn’t do that, plus I don’t even know-how,” I reply.
“That’s true you are too stupid to do something like that. Could it have been one of your friends? Maybe that Lola?” He asks.
“I don’t think so, she’s never been out of my sight for long when she’s over, plus I don’t think she’d do something like that,” I explain.
“Get out of here then, you are no help.” My dad sneers at me.
“Um, mom could you come with me?” I start to say but my dad interrupts.
“No, she’s staying with me.” He says while gripping her arm. My mom starts to struggle, and he slaps her.
“Dad your mad and need to cool off, please let us leave you so you don’t hurt us.” I calmly explain. Mr. Garett told me to try this, keep a level head, and remove myself and others from the situation when my dad gets like this. I’ve decided to try it and only push my dad like I usually do if it doesn’t work. My tactic had been to get him to switch his anger to me, if I could get him to leave us alone another way it would be better for all of us. I doubted it would work. My dad liked to hit us when he got like this.
To my surprise, he says, “fine get out of my hair, I’m going out for a drive.”
My mom and I watch as he leaves the room. I hear my dad slam a door on his way out. “I’m going to lie down for a while,” my mom says and leaves me alone.
I go up to my room and call Lola. After a few rings she answers, “hello?”
“Hey, um, are you busy?” I ask.
“No just about to have a shower, why?” She replies.
“Could I come over?” I ask.
“Sure, how long will you be?” She answers.
“A half-hour probably,” I tell her as I start to get my things together.
“Sure, see you soon,” Lola says and then hangs up.
I get my stuff ready and leave my house. Am I ever glad I have my car back. When I get to Lola’s apartment, she answers the door. “Hey, is everything okay?” She asks me with a concerned look.
I admire her for a moment while I think of what to say. Her hair is wet and she’s wearing monkey pajamas, she couldn’t look better.
“Kind of, my dad flipped out and I was able to get him to leave us alone without making myself the target. Normally I would have gotten my dad angry at me to stop him from hurting my mom. Tonight, I tried something new, and it was able to stop everyone from getting hurt.” I explain as I walk inside and into the living room.
“That’s good, you know, that no one got hurt. But it sucks that he tried to hurt your mom,” Lola says as we sit down on the couch together. Since it’s 8:45 and I don’t see her siblings around I’m assuming both Tomás and Tessa have gone to bed.
“Yeah, I needed to get out of there though. He went for a drive, but he might come back to yell at me. Apparently, someone broke into his office and stole information off his computer. That’s why so many of his ‘business deals’ have fallen through.” I say with air quota around business deals. I know he is doing illegal things, I’m just not sure about the details.
“Who does he think did it?” Lola asks.
“He has no idea, he asked me if you or I did it. I told him neither of us did. He was talking on the phone with someone who he told to figure out who stole the information.” I tell her. Lola nods and we sit in silence for a moment.
“What do you think I should do about him? Like I know he is involved in illegal activities, but I don’t know any of the details. Should I tell Kyle? My mom maybe? Should I go to the cops?” I ask Lola.
“If you don’t know any specifics going to the cops won’t help. He might be paying them off for all we know and then that information will get back to him and he’ll be angry with you. As far as your mom I think she knows, not the details but the fact that he is doing illegal stuff. There’s no way you can be married that long and not know.” Lola says.
“You think?” I ask.
“You know her better than me. But in my experience my mom always knew that my dad was doing illegal stuff, she never said so out loud, but she knew. Just like you know with me.” Lola replies.
“I mean she has always given us vague info when it comes to his business trips and deals, plus he always tells her stuff. I mean it would make sense. Maybe she thinks it’s for the good of our family or that he’ll hurt her if she says anything.” I talk through my thoughts.
“Yeah, if you want my advice, don’t push her but you could ask her about it,” Lola tells me.
“I think that might be a good idea. What do you think I should do about Kyle? Should I tell him?” I ask. This whole situation is strange. I don’t know enough to make accusations that have any weight. But I am sick of sitting back and letting my dad control and ruin our lives.
“Maybe talk to your mom first then Kyle, but make sure he won’t go run to your dad. You don’t want another fight that ends in violence,” Lola tells me.
“I like that plan. I think I’ll talk to my mom soon; do you know anything more about my dad?” I ask.
“I asked around and didn’t hear much. One guy told me that your dad is opening a warehouse on the outskirts of town. He thought that it might hold human trafficking victims. Besides that, there was one person who said that they thought he was involved in drugs but high up, so they weren’t sure.” Lola tells me. I nod and think about what she just said.
“Want to watch a show?” Lola asks snapping me from my thoughts.
“Ugh sure, is it alright if I stay over tonight? I have a change of clothes, so we won’t have to get up all early tomorrow.” I say.
“Of course, it’s okay Cade,” Lola says with a big smile. As she leans over to grab the remote, she gives me a kiss on the cheek.
After two episodes of SpongeBob, we head to bed. We are pretty cramped in her twin bed, but I don’t mind, as long as I’m with Lola I’m happy.