November 8, 2016

Liz: Intermission

Liz watched the taxi speed off after being paid. 
Feeling incredibly silly, she wiped a stray tear from her cheek.   For some reason, she just couldn't quit crying since she'd left Sunset Valley.

How had she messed things up so badly? she thought with a small spurt of panic.  She'd screeched at him like a shrew and then slipped out while he was gone for a walk. 
Taking a small breath, attempting to gain some control over her unruly emotions, Liz turned and glanced at her childhood home.  
 She mounted the steps slowly. 
Everything here was exactly the same.  Same flowers, same stupid lawn art, same everything!  And yet everything had also changed... she had changed...  

It was enough to boggle the mind.  Reaching into her pocket, she pulled out her key chain, looking for the right key.  There it was... same old key.., she thought with a sense of detachment.  Maybe you could go home...
She unlocked the front door and stepped in. 
Her mom jumped up at the sound of the front door opening and closing, a panicked expression on her face.  She whirled around, then let out a long, shuddering breath when she saw her daughter.  "For God's sake, Liz! You might've called before coming over!" she snapped, her heart still racing with fright. 
"Sorry, Mom,"  Liz winced.  "I didn't think..."

The sound of a book being slapped against wood reverberated through the front entry.  "You never do think, do you?" her mom admonished her tiredly, with her hands on her hips.  "Well! To what do I owe the visit?" she finished testily.

Liz felt the damnable tears creeping up on her and instead of answering her mom, she played a book from her teenage years and ran to her room, slamming the door.

Liz leaned against the door to her room for a second, with her eyes closed, willing the tears to go away!  She was tired of being such an emotional mess.  So it was official.  You could not come home, she thought, shaking her head with disgust.

She'd visited a few times since college, but she and her mom never seemed to be able to get past the whole disapproving mother and wild teenager drama.

Opening her eyes, she caught sight of her childhood imaginary bear.  Smiling softly, she gingerly picked up Mr. Scary and hugged him.  It was comforting.

Then, turning her head, she took in her old room.

It was all the same, as though she'd stepped back in time.  
Her gaze got stuck on the Orb of Answers by her bed.  She shook her head sadly.  She remembered using that silly thing all the time as a child, trying to figure out if she should learn a new skill, make a new friend, play a game or fall in love...

Her breath hitched.  Slowly, she reached out and picked it up.
"Will I find true love?" she asked, closing her eyes and shaking the orb, all the while trying to focus on her heart's desire.
She watched the answer cube bobble in the murky water before floating to the top and pressing against the viewer.

I sure wouldn't, but that's just me.
Liz squeezed her eyes shut.   Oh damn.  She was going to cry and there was nothing she could do about it.  She felt the prickles as the stupid pregnancy hormones surged to the surface.
Covering her eyes with her hand in a bid to stall the tears, she whispered coarsely "Why do I do this to myself?"  
Shoving the stupid orb back onto her nightstand, she collapsed on her bed, burying her face in her hands.

She'd had her shot at happiness and she was pretty sure she completely screwed it up.

After a good cry and a short nap, Liz was feeling at least semi-normal.  She laid in the bed and stroked her belly.  "Sorry you wound up with such a mess for a mom," she apologized to the child currently residing in there.  "Boy, did you win the lottery," she grumbled under her breath.

With a long sigh, she realized that she should probably go find her mom and talk...
Of course, she knew exactly where to find her...
Liz pushed open the office door.
"Can we talk?" Liz asked quietly, tensing when her mom sighed with irritation and pushed away from the computer desk.

She always made her feel like she was interrupting.
Liz sat in complete silence as her mom fiddled with the coffee maker.  She wasn't going to get upset, she reminded herself.  She was an adult.  And she could have an adult conversation with her mom.  
"There. Two delicious caramel swirls," her mom announced, glancing back towards her daughter.  "Lite, of course," she added as though imparting a secret, emphasizing the low calorie aspect.

Liz pursed her lips. As a teenager, her mom had forever tried to get her to diet and lose her "chubby cheeks."  She wasn't pretty enough, she wasn't popular enough, and she just wasn't ever.... enough for her mom.  And all the blame was laid on Liz's round shape.  It had been enough to give her a complex.  The word 'diet' alone was enough to make her eye twitch!
Her mom came to the table and put the drinks in front of them, then sat down beside her.  They awkwardly stared around the kitchen.
Her mom was the first one to speak, sighing with weariness.  "So? Tell me.  What trouble have you gotten yourself into this time?" she asked.
"Gee, thanks for the vote of confidence," Liz muttered under her breath, looking away from her mom.  Her mom had always assumed the worst about her!
"What was that, Elizabeth?" her mom asked, reaching out to take a sip from her coffee.  "You know I can't stand it when you mumble under breath.  It's unseemly!"

Liz glanced back to her mother, raising her voice a smidge and over-enunciating.  "I said that I just came for a visit! Excuse me for thinking I'd be welcome here!" Adult conversation, Liz. Adult conversation, she reminded herself.  She wouldn't let her mom get under her skin.
"You know very well that you're welcome here at any time.  I just find it surprising that you would come so close to your due date and without your live-in paramour," her mom responded tartly.  

 Liz fiddled with the coffee mug set in front of her while her mother waited for her response.  What could she say?  Her mom was waiting to hear how she'd screwed up her life, yet again.  And she was less than eager to confess that she was right. Yet again.
Finally she sighed, pushing the mug away.  "Moudy and I had a big fight and I left.  Okay? Not a big deal," she said as matter-of-factly as she could, praying that she wouldn't start crying again in front of her mom.

"Not a big deal?" her mom scoffed.  "It most certainly is a big deal!"

Liz shrugged.  "He accused me of stalling and I... well...  I don't know.  Maybe I am!" she admitted petulantly.  She'd been so mad that he'd been pushing her to make decisions.  She had a lot on her plate right now!
Her mom sighed, eyeing her critically.  "You always do this, Elizabeth! You always run away when faced with a difficult decision.  You just can't accept responsibility!"

"That's not true!" Liz cried in protest.

"No?!" her mom scoffed.  "What about the time in grade school when you refused to join any afterschool activities because you couldn't choose between Scouts & Ballet?" her mother reminded her.

"I was ten!" Liz returned in horror.  Surely that shouldn't count against her!  Besides, all she'd wanted to do was play outside!

"What about the time in high school when you skipped the prom just because nobody asked you and you couldn't decide whether to go alone or with your friends?" he mother ticked off her second finger.  "Or the time you agonized over La Fiesta Tech or Sim State University?  I had to practically fill out the paperwork for you, otherwise I'm sure you wouldn't have gone at all!"

Liz opened her mouth to protest.  "That's not fair!" 

Her mom eyed her over her mug of coffee, scoffing yet again.  "It might not be fair, but it's the truth," she snapped.
"Well maybe it's because I had an overbearing mother who was always telling me what to do!" Liz replied hotly.  "You have always made it abundantly clear that whenever I do make a decision, I've made the wrong one! No wonder I'm so socially awkward!"

Her mom gasped, setting down her coffee.  "That is an awful thing to say to your mother!"

Liz glared at her mom.  "It might be awful, but it's the truth," she mimicked angrily.  "And by the way, I can make decisions on my own!"  she argued.  "I not only attended university, but I excelled at it! I graduated with a 3.9 in the technology field! I..."
Her mom interrupted her.  "And what have you done with that prestigious degree? Did you find a  career?  No!  You chose to move in with a boy you hardly knew, have lived off of your trust fund, and have gotten accidentally pregnant out of wedlock. And now," she added, throwing her hands up, "You are apparently having second thoughts about getting married to the father of that baby!  I'm sure your father is turning over in his grave!"
"I don't know why I thought we could have this conversation!" Liz snapped irritably, completely disgusted with herself.  "We never do anything over than fight!"

Liz shoved her chair back and stood up.

"We are not finished talking about this, Elizabeth Melisandre Tarry! You sit back down this instant!" her mom snapped angrily, pointing to Liz's chair.
Suddenly, Liz bent over, grabbing the back of the chair with a grimace.

"Sit back down!" her mom repeated, standing up, as well, as though to block Liz from leaving. "We are going to finish this!"
Liz glanced down at her feet.  "Mom... I think my water broke... "
It took a moment for her mom to process.  "But you're not due for another two weeks!" her mom sputtered, wringing her hands.  "Are you sure it's not just the practice pains?"

Liz clutched her stomach as another labor pain rolled over her.  I can't do anything right!  she thought with regret.  She wiped a tear away, terrified to be giving birth in her hometown with only her mother.

"I want Moudy," she whimpered, new tears forming at the corner of her eyes.


  1. Stop scaring me like that! I thought Liz had left for good! She hadn't left, has she?

    Liz' mother is one stone cold shrew. Good for Liz telling her off a bit. Bet it was the arguing that started the birth. But her first thought was Moudy, which might be a good sign. Even if the orb- thingy messed with her a bit

    1. Liz is the one with full-fledged cold feet! She left without talking to Moudy and went home.

      No warm fuzzy feeling after visiting home! Liz has a horrible relationship with her mom! I think it explains a little bit why she pushes off making decisions so much! (at least I hope it does!) She wants someone to tell her what to do!

      Poor Moudy is going to miss the birth of his child!

  2. I loved learning more about Liz' past and upbringing! What a terrible mother she has :/ No, going back to Appaloosa Plains is definitely not an option, Liz. You need to keep hiding out in Sunset Valley ;)

    Really awesome chapter!

    1. Liz (I mean Elizabeth really had a rough time growing up & not being understood. Her mother is a pain in the butt!

      HA! I see what you did there! ;) Hiding Out in Sunset Valley - woo hoo!

      Thanks! I'll be glad to get Liz back to Sunset Valley!

  3. Wow! What a mother. Hard to believe Liz just walked in the door using her own key. What did she expect??? Did she think her mom wouldn't be home? Pretty shortsighted to not call first.

    Looks like her mom was one of the types who wants to control every aspect of their child's life. And when Liz was given a choice to make, she didn't know what to do. This gives more perspective to why Liz hasn't made a decision when it comes to Jason.

    1. Liz's mom is a pain in the neck! You're right - her mom was way overbearing & Liz wound up never really making a decision!