May 31, 2014

Chase: Week Seventeen, Day Seven

Neurotic Obsession:  Chase makes some hard decisions...

This was probably the hardest thing Chase had ever done in his life.
He held his hand out to Yvonne.  "Thanks for coming over," he said, slightly nodding towards Yvonne's new husband.  "Felix," he said in greeting.

"I think this is an absolutely wonderful idea, sugar," Yvonne drawled. "You're not going to regret it."

I already do, Chase thought miserably.
But the moment Sandra and Benito brought Farrah home, they had argued bitterly.  Chase was tired of Farrah breaking every rule he'd ever laid down.
And Farrah, in turn, was completely fed up with everything, it seemed.  She complained about the town, getting broken up with, getting kicked off the cheer leading squad, some boy not liking her, and her sister driving her mother away.

That one had stopped Chase dead in his tracks...

"You think Eva pushed your mother away?" he'd asked incredulously.
"Eva was always making mama upset!"  Farrah said hotly.  "I remember that night!  Eva made mama leave!"

Chase was floored. "Honey... your mother didn't leave because of Eva, or because of you.  She left because she fell in love with Felix..."

Farrah crossed her arms defensively. "Well, she wouldn't have done that if Eva hadn't..."
"Stop it! I hate her! And I hate it here!" Farrah screamed before running upstairs.  

***

A short phone call later and Yvonne had agreed with him. 

"Farrah, come downstairs please," Chase called up the stairs. 

Farrah came slowly down the stairs, surprised to see her dad teamed up with her mom and stepdad.  She plopped down on the couch and crossed her legs.  "So what is this? The Spanish Inquisition?"

Yvonne cleared her throat. "No, your father and I talked and decided that if you'd like to, perhaps you can come live with us... in the city."
Farrah leapt up from the couch and dashed into her mama's arms. "Do you mean it? I can come live with you?" she asked breathlessly. 
 Yvonne pulled back, "Watch the suit, sugar," she said, "But, yes.  There will be rules.  You have to bring your grades up, no boys, and you have to get a part-time job," Yvonne ticked off the requirements on her fingers.

"Oh I promise! I promise!" Farrah said fervently, crossing her heart.

"Then it sounds like it's settled!" Felix said, clapping his hands and looking towards Chase.

Chase's stomach pitched to the floor.  "Sounds like it," he said dully. 
Farrah turned to her dad and stood in front of him.  "I'm so sorry, daddy," she said.  "I promise to still visit. I'm going to make you proud of me!"

"I'm already proud of you," Chase said roughly.
 Farrah threw herself into Chase's arms.  "I'm going to miss you," she said tearfully. 

"I'm going to miss you, too," he said.
And then he watched his baby girl walk out of the house for the last time...
It had been one of the hardest things he'd ever done...

***
 
But, there was still another unpleasant task ahead.  "I have to go out," he said over his shoulders to Eva and Greyson.
 "Where do you think he's going?" Greyson asked his older sister.

"I don't know," Eva said, shaking her head sadly.

***

 Chase rang the doorbell.
"Come on in," Sandra said when she opened the door.  "Coffee's brewing."  Looking back at Alex, she nodded towards the door, indicating she wanted to be alone.  Alex shuffled from the room, giving the parents privacy.
"She's gone now," he said sadly.

"Oh, Chase, I'm so sorry!" Sandra said, pulling him into her arms and holding him tightly.  "I'm so sorry."

Chase stood there wrapped in the arms of the woman he loved for a moment and then he pulled away, ready to get this over with.
"Why were you even out at that time of night with Benito?" he demanded.  It was time to get everything out in the open.  There was no way he was going to be made a fool of twice!  "I thought we'd agreed not to see anyone else!"
"I'm not seeing him!" Sandra said.  "He was going to play a set that night and I went along with him!"
Chase shook his head.  "I don't believe it.  You'd told me that you were too tired to go out and then I find you out with another man!"

"He's the father of my children!" Sandra growled.

"Even worse!" Chase spat back.  "If you're going to get back with him, just be honest about it. Don't sneak around behind my back!"
"Chase, I swear to God, I haven't cheated on you. I'm not planning on cheating on you! I love you? Okay?!" Sandra said angrily, pointing her finger in his face. 
They both stopped and stared at each other.  "That's the first time you've ever said that to me," he said quietly.

Sandra shrugged, "Yeah, well, you made me angry."

Chase turned over everything in his mind, trying to make sense of it.  In the end, he shook his head.
"I can't do this again," he said, turning to leave.
There is no way I'm getting my heart broken again, he thought angrily as he strode from the house.

The irony was that his heart was already breaking...

***

"Greyson, you'll be okay for awhile on your own? I have to run into town real quick," Eva said, ruffling Greyson's hair.
Greyson ducked down and dodged her hand.  "Hey quit it! You're going to mess my hair up!" he protested.  "Yeah, I'll be fine. Go on!" he added when he was safe from her sisterly teasing.
 Now what was there to do? he wondered as his eyes lit on his Grandpa Ace's guitar.
Dad always said not to touch it, but surely it'd be okay now that he was older!  Greyson reached over and picked it up, testing it's weight in his hands. It felt like it'd been made for him.
He adjusted his grip and strummed a few lines.  "Oh man! That sounds awful!" he laughed.  Man, he needed to learn to play!

***

Eva headed down to City Hall and was surprised to see Arturo there.  "Hey Eva!" he called out merrily.  Eva sighed.  She'd been so worried that her turning him down at the Summer Dance might have ruined their friendship.  But it seemed like they would be Best Friends Forever!
 "Hey! Are you here to join the protest?" Arturo asked excitedly.  It'd been some time since they'd picketed together.
"Actually, I have something else I have to work on.  But maybe I'll see you when I'm done," she smiled.
 Then headed up the steps into City Hall.
A few hours later, she came out feeling confident and excited. She'd done it!  She'd gotten a job in politics.  Oh sure, she was starting way down at the bottom - but she was going to make a big difference!

***

 "Oh man, I double dog dare you," Alex Goth laughed.

"No way, I triple dog dare you!" Greyson responded with a giggle. 
 "Wait! Wait! I know! Let's go together!"

"Alright! But I'm telling you! There's nothing in there!" Alex laughed.

"I guess we'll see about that! Come on!"
 Greyson and Alex took off. They were going to explore the Catacombs of the Goth Crypt. 
 "You're not chickening out, are you?" Greyson called back to Alex.

"No way! I'm not chickening out if you're not chickening out..." Alex quipped back, but he was definitely not laughing now...
"AHHHHH!" screamed a high-pitched apparition in the crypt.

"Holy crap! RUN!" Greyson yelled and he and Alex tumbled over themselves as they pushed towards the Crypt door.  The two best friends hauled ass out of the cemetery.

They might not have found ghosts, but they'd discovered an elderly Melvin Wolff and Delilah Calhoun buck-naked in the crypt having sex.  And THAT was scarier than ANY ghost or zombie!

Chase: Week Seventeen, Day Six

Neurotic Obsession:  The Summer Dance changes everything...

Greyson met with his friends after school and played hopscotch.  Since Alex Goth's mom and his dad had started dating - they'd been best friends. And usually Izzie always wanted to tag along.  He wondered where she was today...
When she finally showed up, she seemed upset.  Her brother, Alex, just rolled his eyes and teased her for being over-emotional, which sent her running off.
 Greyson followed after her.  By now he was getting pretty good at teasing her out of a bad mood.
"Izzie! Bleh-bleh-bleh-bleh!" he mumbled, making a funny face.  "Come on, don't cry.  Let's go play!"
And just like that, her good mood was returned and they dashed off to play.

 ***

Chase loved performing with his brother.  Devon was a regular virtuoso, and had learned to play several different instruments - even the keyboard.  It made their performances versatile and engaging.
 And front row he could always find Sandra, cheering for him and supporting him.

 ***

Farrah checked herself out one last time before the Summer Dance.  Oh yeah, she looked hot! She was ready to break hearts!

 ***

 "Is Nick here yet?" Arturo asked.

"No, we're supposed to meet up here," Eva answered, "Why?"

Arturo took a deep breath.
"Eva, I've been crazy about you since I first met you!" he gushed quickly, as though he was afraid he'd lose his courage.  "I know you like Nick, but you don't know him half as well as you know me! Take a chance on me..."

Arturo held his breath, waiting for her answer.
Her eyes betrayed her long before she opened her mouth.  First surprise flickered in her eyes, followed quickly by sympathy and unease.  "Artie... I don't know what to say..." she stammered.  "I always thought you and Amelia..."
"Eva! Arturo! Hey! You ready to dance?!" Nick called out as he hurried up to them.

Eva shot Artie a look of apology as Nick bounded up and pulled her into his arms.  Eva cringed when he stole a quick kiss in front of Artie.

Finally, Amelia showed up, and the group was ready to enter.
"Come on, guys, let's go," Amelia said, leading the way through the double doors.  Arturo followed behind, seeing her as though for the first time...

 ***

 "This is all your fault," Farrah complained as they stopped at the steps leading to the school. 
Nathaniel glanced over at his "date".  "Why do you say that?" he asked impatiently.  All Farrah had done since he'd picked her up was complain about this or complain about that.
She glanced up the steps.  "He wouldn't be with her if you'd kept her happy. That back-stabbing B stole her from me!"
Nathaniel followed her gaze to where his ex-girlfriend was currently flirting with Farrah's ex-boyfriend.  That whole mess was the whole stupid reason he'd even agreed to go to the Summer Dance with Farrah.  She'd cornered him after practice and demanded that he take her since his ex stole her boyfriend.

And he did feel alittle guilty.  It'd been clear that Joan had wanted something more from him.  After Farrah's dad had whisked her away, Joan and Jason spent the rest of the night getting cozy.  He'd watched them flirt, strangely unmoved.  It was then that he realized his relationship with Joan was over...

Unfortunately, Farrah's relationship had been doomed along with his...
As Farrah and Nathaniel walked into the dance, they passed by Joan and Alto.  The girls stuck their noses up in the air at each other, giving each other a wide berth.  "Come on, let's just go," he said, grabbing her arm when it looked like Farrah might say something to Joan.

This is going to be some dance, he thought with a heavy sigh.   Across the room, Eva laughed with her group of friends and Nathaniel smiled, wishing he could be in that group...

 ***

"You know, those things are going to kill you," Nathaniel said after following Farrah outside. 
"Whatever. They relax me," she snapped as she lowered her cigarette and blew the smoke in his face.

Nathaniel waved the air in front of him, attempting to push the smoke away from him.  "Knock it off," he snapped.

"Thanks for coming out with me," Farrah said, dropping the cigarette butt and grinding it out with the heel of her shoe.  "There was something I wanted to talk to you about," she said, lowering her voice in a seductive manner.

Oh boy, Nathaniel thought.  Exactly what he'd been afraid of...

***

 Eva watched as Arturo walked off with Amelia.  She'd noticed Artie paying more attention to Amelia tonight.  She hoped it worked out for them... she'd always thought they'd make a cute couple!

She turned when she heard her name called.  "Yes?" she asked, recognizing one of Farrah's friends.

Michelle giggled.  "Farrah wanted to see you. She's out back."

Eva raised her eyebrow at the way Michelle was giggling and looking back at Jason and Joan.  Of course Farrah's friends would be brainless.   Something seemed off.. especially because she knew Farrah would never ask for her!

Might as well go see what was going on, though.

***
Farrah leaned forward to kiss Nathaniel when she heard someone gasp behind them.  Nathaniel pulled back, trying to think about how to get out of this without hurting her feelings.
"Oh, excuse me!" Eva said quickly, hurrying away without another word.
Nathaniel cursed roundly under his breath.  "Farrah, no. Quit it!" Nathaniel said, gently pushing Farrah away from him.  "I came as your friend, not your date."

"What? I thought you liked me..." Farrah said, shocked.

"You're a nice girl.. but..." Nathaniel trailed off, unsure of what to say.  He glanced over and saw Eva's retreating form.
Farrah followed his gaze and scoffed.  "Please?! Eva?! That's so hilarious! You think she might like you?!"  Farrah laughed again, bitterly.  "Beauty and the Nerd!"

Nathaniel glared, "You don't know what you're talking about!" he snapped.  Everything about this night had been a complete disaster. 
 "LOSER!"
Nathaniel didn't waste another minute talking to Farrah. He hurried after Eva.
Farrah watched Nathaniel hurry away and scowled.  She pulled her cell phone out of her purse and dialed a number.  "Can I come over?" she snapped.

 ***

"Eva! Wait up!" Nathaniel called out as he jogged after her.  Eva tried to walk faster, but Nathaniel easily caught up.  
"Look, it's not what it looked like..." Nathaniel tried to explain.
But Eva cut him off.  "You don't owe me any explanations," she said quickly. "You know, she might act like she's ready for all that.. kissing and.. you know... but she's not! But I definitely never thought that you would try to take advantage..."

Nathaniel shook his head. "No! That's what I was trying to explain! I wasn't! Trying to kiss her!" he protested. "I wasn't!" he added, grabbing her hand when she tried to turn away from him.

They both stopped and looked down to where their hands were joined.
Eva pulled back as though bitten by a snake, then shaking her head, she hurried away.

Nathaniel watched her go.

 ***

"I told you those high school kids are losers! Come on out with me and my boyfriend! We were going to go down to a bar.  I have a fake id you can use."  Yesenia Baker-Black said.
Farrah didn't think she'd ever been more excited.  She followed inside behind Yesenia, watching as she ordered a round of drinks.  Ohmigod, ohmigod, ohmigod! she thought to herself.
Casually, she stepped up and grabbed a party drink as Morris and Yesenia started making out.  Aw, it made her miss Jason...
Jason who? she thought a few drinks later.   "This. Night. has been. Awesome!" Farrah told Yesenia.

Hearing a gasp, she whirled around and stared drunkenly at the door, squinting to see who'd just come in.
 "Oh fu..."