The Broken Family



I close the door of Charlie's car and rush up the long driveway until I am in front of the door of my house. I look back swiftly and notice that his car is now gone. Why did I have to say something like that? He was finally talking to me; asking me out, and yet I...

I sigh and sit on one of the lawn chairs that decorates our spacious porch. I watch the Easter lilies our gardener had planted at the beginning of the summer in front of our house. Their white purity whispers to me of my messy deeds and I feel the sudden urge to escape my guilty words.

I drop my bag and walk off of the porch. I cross the empty driveway (my father never granted me my wish of a car) and I stand beside our front yard garden.

There are wilting sunflowers, closing blood red roses, and falling bleeding hearts; our gardener had been hard at work. I pick a closing rose and I stare at it mindlessly.

A rose can tell me so much.

If only my home were as comfortable a place to write as my school is. I could never tell Charlie, my dad, or anyone that I spend hours after school almost every day of every school year in front of my locker writing.

I twist the delicate, dying flower in my hand. The love that is meant with such a rose is lost on me.

Perhaps this is why I uttered such words to the man I secretly love.

A rose can tell me so much.




My brother walks into my room just as I start working on my hair. I have long learned that women love the natural dark roots of my hair and I gel the ends out so as to accentuate them.

"What's her last name?" Charlie asks before saying anything else.

"Who?" I ask, but of course I know who he is speaking of.

He lies down on my bed after shoving aside several pieces of clothes that I had thrown around in search of an outfit for the party. "Lorena," I can sense the smile in his voice and I know that something is up. "I gave her a ride home and she went off on me about her last name. I honestly have no idea and she seemed pretty upset."

I quickly turn around and throw my deodorant, which was on my dresser, at Charlie. 

"Why'd you do that?" He yelps while rubbing his stomach after my attack. I have always been a good aim.

"Well man, because I told you that she was hot and now you're going after her?"

"I just want to know her last name and I know that you know," Charlie sits up and grabs a tennis ball by my bed and starts tossing it in the air. "Plus, she's in my grade and the way she looks at me, I just know I have to figure her out."

"She isn't a chess board for you to figure out," I say, surprised at the words leaving my mouth. "You want to know her so bad, then check out the place where she has always been: the year book."

I turn around to work on my hair again and I feel Charlie staring at me in awe. "You're right, this isn't a game. I have the year book from last year, thanks Paul."

I hear him exit my room and I feel a strange emotion welling up inside me.




How could I have not thought of it? Am I that deluded, that blinded that I hadn't realized that the answer was right in front of me.

I dig out the year book and find her picture.

She is the same girl that sat in my car today, her long black hair lies in long strands down her front. She is unsmiling, but I can still sense an energy that is her unique quality.

As I am searching for her in other photos of the year book I hear the entrance door open and close.

"Boys!" My mom yells up the stairs and I can almost hear Paul planning his getaway.

"Hey mom," I say from my room and I brush my blond hair with my fingers as I toss the book onto my bed. "Hey Paul, mom's home."

"I know," I hear him mutter from his room.

When we were younger Paul had become his current state. He had once been an obedient son, but many of life's twist and turns had turned him against our mom and dad. Rebellion, since he was twelve, was his greatest escape.

Running away is one of his favorite hobbies when life becomes too difficult. Usually the cure would be a simple waiting period of two days, maximum, but my brother has a life-threatening set back that always has us running after him.

When he was four, before he was diagnosed, Paul suffered from his first severe asthma attack. He had been blue by the time the doctors got to him, by some mere chance of luck he was brought back.

My mother never lets him forget the fragility of his body, and despite his enjoyment of football, my brother always has the constant need to take a hit from his puffer. It is his life source.

After a few choice words from my mother to my father after the incident that nearly destroyed my brother's life, our family was ruined.

Rebellion is understandable when your near-death experience leaves you with the guilt of a broken family.

The End

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