"We're moving next week."
"What?!? Mom! Why? We're just settling down!"
She turned around to look at me, "Your father-"
"Oh that's a classic. Your father got a promotion but we have to move somewhere else in order to accept it. Why not stay here? We seem to be doing just fine with his current salary. Not mention your part time earnings.
"No. You're wrong Daniel."
"Oh is that so? Please. Enlighten me."
"Your father was let go today."
I pulled back the retort I had ready and felt my mouth drop open.
"He... he was let go? Why? How? He's been with the company for eleven years!"
"I know Daniel. I know. But the others in his department have been there longer than eleven years."
My bag fell to the floor and sunk down with it. My dad couldn't be... I mean he was...
It wasn't possible...
I left the house and went for a walk. I needed to think. The more I thought however... the more my emotions began to change. Yes a few weeks ago I wouldn't have wanted to move even if it would have killed me. But now...
What was there to stay for?
Lionel hated me.
Claudia left me.
My two reasons for coming back to this town, gone. I stopped walking and looked around. Where was I? The place looked familiar... it was... oh... it was the park. The park where we used to hang out as children. I started for the entrance, then stopped. Why go to a place that reminded you of what you lost?
What were the lyrics to that song? "You never know what you got til it's gone."
I turned away from the park and began to trudge home. I arrived, climbed the stairs to my room, and sat down at my computer.
I logged onto facebook, and posted a long rambling status that was a mixture of harbinger and goodbye. Within a few minutes there were nearly ten comments. Sad faces, "I'll miss you"s, one "take care of yourself", and a few other comments. Only one person had liked the status.
I didn't even want to try and be mad. I went to close the internet when my inbox said I had a message.
It was from Claudia. For a second I hesitated... then I continued to move the mouse towards the red X button, and closed out.
A few minutes later my cell phone rang. I didn't bother to check it. Severing connections now would eliminate the need to hack them off later.
Then the doorbell rang. I ignored it, until I heard my mom say "Daniel! Someone at the door for you!"
I groaned, stumbled out of bed, and shambled off to the door. It was Claudia. As soon as I saw her waiting there I turned right around and went for the stairs. I didn't want to see her. I didn't to talk to her. How could I make it more obvious?
"Daniel! You have a friend at the door!"
"She's not my friend. And I'm not in the mood."
"Daniel. Get back here and talk to her. She is a guest."
"No she's not. She hasn't come inside yet! I'm not talking to her." I reached my room as I said this and slammed the door behind for emphasis. My mom didn't force me to do things all that much. But when she did... and I refused... it made her upset.I knew that within the next fifteen minutes I would have an angry mom banging on the door.
When the knocking did come, I was surprised that it wasn't all that loud. My mom was probably concerned and didn't want o hurt my feelings or something. I tried to ignore the knocking but it persisted. I got up and opened the door.
It was Claudia.
"I'm not talking to you. Please get out of my house before Lionel chews my head off. I don't want to see you, and he doesn't want you seeing me either I imagine."
She rolled right in. I just looked at her for a moment. She looked back. Then I did the one thing I could do to take back my quiet time. I picked up my cellphone and hit speed dial number one.
"No Number Set For Speed Dial Number One."
Oh. That's right. I tried to recall his number, but I couldn't. So I went back to my computer and zoomed to Lionel's facebook page. I found his number in his info section and, with Claudia watching, I dialed my former best friend.
"Hello? Who is this?"
"Yeah I forgot your number too. So I won't take it that personally that you don't remember mine."
"Daniel. I'll give you ten seconds to explain why you're ruining my day."
"Oh yeah sure about that... umm... actually it's a funny story... I was having a pretty bad day myself because you know... I'm leaving and all and-"
"-all I wanted was some nice quiet time to think about everything that was happening and-"
"I got a visitor-"
"-That I didn't really want"
"And I was wondering if you could help me get rid of this problem."
"...you are seriously asking for my help. Have an awful day Daniel."
"Thanks I will, AS SOON AS YOU GET YOUR GIRLFRIEND OUT OF MY FREAKING HOUSE. Thanks. Bye."
I waited for the call back which came precisely 4 seconds later.
"Hello. No interest is available to take your call. Please leave a message, so I can delete it."
"Yeah good to talk to you too. I don't want hear your voice longer than I have to so I'll make this short. What did you say about my girlfriend?"
"Hmm? What're you talking about?"
"You said something about Claudia when I hung up."
"Hmm... I don't recall..."
"OH! Oh oh oh... that girlfriend... the one that didn't leave you and make you look really stupid... right..."
I glance over at Claudia. She a very disapproving scowl on her face.
"Yes. Daniel. That one."
"Yeah... umm... she's in my house, and I want her gone."
"She is in my abode. I tried ignoring her but it's not working. Can you help me out a little? I figured it's mutually beneficial."
"Can you put me on speaker please?"
"Well since you said plea-"
"Just do it Daniel."
I activated speaker phone and said "Ok. Go ahead."
"Why are you at Daniel's house?"
"I wanted to talk to him."
"We hate him. Remember?"
"No. You hate him. I was just hurt by him."
I put the cellphone on the floor and said "I'm gonna leave you two alone for a little while."
Then I threw open the door and walked down the stairs, past my mother, and out the door.