Chapter X: Back Home
Word count: 1555
Time Taken: 1h 53m
I woke up on the ground, my head throbbing, my appendages feeling heavy and an uneasy feeling filling my stomach. I stretched my mouth open yawning. My memory of earlier in the evening was still hazy.
The fire was still burning, much weaker now, but most people had left, a handful of them remaining who were picking up the trash that had been left around and tossing it in a plastic bin in the back of the music guy's pick-up truck. I tried to stand up but Jeremy had an arm around me.
I blushed pretty badly, but thankfully he wasn't awake. He probably had passed out after I did and snuggled up unconsciously. Hopefully. I gently wiggled free and got back up, my legs hesitant to comply as they shook from underneath me.
"You know what time it is?" I asked the closest guy as he took the bottle that had been left next to the blanket we had been laying on, he was an older guy with long dark hair, a tight pair of jeans and and tank top that showed sleek looking spiraling tattoos that ran along his arms.
"About two thirty." He declared. "You alright, you look rather pale?"
"Yeah, just my first time getting wasted." I admitted, shily looking away. "I passed out..."
"Happens to everyone." He said with a chuckle. "I'm Jace." He said, offering a hand. "You don't look so good, you want a ride when we're done picking up?" I hesitated for a moment, looking back at Jeremy who was still asleep. "Your boyfriend can come too, you know."
I turned lobster red as he said it and quietly corrected him. "He's not my boyfriend..."
"Oh, sorry, I just though that since you were... close... that you and he were together." He apologized, making the moment even more awkward. "Want to give me a hand?"
I nodded and picked up the litter from around me, putting it in a plastic bag that he put down along with all the glass bottles from the party. When it was done, I finally decided to wake Jeremy up, not wanting to leave him all alone at night in the woods.
"Uh?" He mumbled, blinking to clear his vision. "Since when was I out?"
"About four hours, actually." I said, giving him a hand to get on his feet before holding him a bit so he wouldn't trip as he had taken way more than I had. He was still woozy while my own head was in the transition from drunk to hung over. "Jace is going to give us a life."
Jace nodded at us and Jer absently waved at him as we got in the back of his truck's cabin. I laid my head against the window for a moment.
"My parents are going to kill me..." I mumbled.
"When were you supposed to be back?" Jer asked.
"My dad luckily doesn't care." He said as Jace entered with three others, two of them riding the back.
He started driving through the narrow trail, which was way too bumpy for normal cars to pass, but his held the road more or less. He quickly reached the actual road and headed for my house first.
I thanked him and got out of the car, walking hesitantly toward the house. The lights were closed and I figured it was a good sign. I opened the door, that had been left unlocked, and peeked inside, there was the light from the kitchen store but nothing else.
I snuck in, walking toward the stairs when my mum called me out. "Good evening, Sophia. Or should I say good morning?" I only barely avoided yelling out a curse in frustration but I stopped myself, my case was already bad. She was sitting at the kitchen table, a mug of long cold coffee by her side.
She walked toward me an put her back against the column that made a semi-separation from the kitchen to the living room. "Do you know how late it is?"
I nodded. "Three in the morning..." I said in a sigh. "I swear I was planning on being on time, I just feel asleep..."
She nodded toward the couch and I knew what it meant; Get ready for 'the talk'. I sat down in front of her and stayed there, waiting for her to start as I crossed my legs, closing myself like a clam.
"So, you want to tell me what took?" She said, sounding more comprehensive rather than angry as I thought she would have been.
"Alcohol and pot." I admitted making her sigh in a mixture of exuberation and relief.
"Nothing too bad, at least." She said, laying back into the cushion on the couch.
"I'm going to be grounded, am I?"
"Yes." She said.
"Got it, I'm going to go to my room..." I said feeling like it was already lost as I started getting back on my feet.
"Sit down, honey." She said and I did.
'There it's coming, the drugs are bad, be careful of boys and don't cave-in to peer pressure speech.' I thought to myself, dreading the moment.
"Listen, Sophia. You're fourteen right now and you'll be fifteen in less than two months, I'm not naive to think that you're going to be some sort of angel that'll do what we ask of her." She began. "This afternoon, all I asked you was that you come back before midnight. As cliché as it sounds, I've been young too, I know what it is to be the new girl in a group and how parties full of teens are.
I already knew that there was going to be drinking and smoking there and I know better than to think you'll hear all those advices about drugs, alcohol and sex and won't want to experiment, discover what it's like.
What I ask of you, is to be responsible, you're old enough to start making decisions about yourself, whether they are bad or not. But you're also old enough to have responsibilities and to know there are consequences for your actions."
I blinked. "Are you saying that you aren't angry I got wasted?" I asked reluctantly.
"I did the same at your age, so did your father and your brother Lewis. But we didn't shrink responsibility and come home in the middle of the night, trying to sneak in hoping nobody would realize."
I looked down at my feet and dirty cargo, ashamed and embarrassed.
"I also want you to realize that even if nothing happened this time, all sort of things can happen at a drunken girl to a party."
"As if someone would want to do anything with me..." I muttered and she took my hand.
"Despite what you believe, you're a beautiful girl Sophia and I'm sure others realize it." I swallowed my saliva and she caressed my cheek. "And one day, you'll find someone that likes you."
"Mum?" I asked, feeling tight in my chest.
"What is it?"
"Do you really believe I'm a lesbian?" I asked, the words taking a moment to come out of my mouth. She seemed a bit taken aback by the question so I explained. "Lew told me."
She sighed a bit, mostly sounding annoyed. But she took me into her arms, holding me tightly. "We considered it." She admitted. "We also considered that you may be transgender." She continued. "When your father and I spoke to Lewis, it wasn't because we were convinced, but because we wanted to make sure that if you or C.J. were, you didn't feel like you wouldn't have be accepted by some of the off-handed comments that he used to make."
I buried my head into her neck, like I used to do as a child, and she held me for a moment. After a few minutes of silence, I finally spoke. "Mum... I don't think I'm gay... and I do think I'm a girl, just not a girly girl, kind of girl."
She kissed my forehead and she let go slightly of me and looked me in the eyes. "And if you were, it wouldn't have changed anything, your dad and I love you just as you are, whatever that is. Just like how we'll always love and accept C.J no matter how he turns out."
"Thanks mum... I didn't expect you to be so understanding." I said, smiling gently.
"You're still grounded though." She said with a smile. "Time to go to bed, and until next saturday, no netflix, TV, video games or going out of the house or backyard."
"Yes Ma'm!" I said, climbing the stairs back to my room. I sat down on the bed, started changing into PJs when Spike jumped on the bed.
"How did you get in here?" I asked, looking at the window which was shut. "You know what, at this point I don't care..." I said, hugging the furball who smelled like the cool countryside evening.
When I lied down to sleep, he did the same, purring softly next to my pillow. If mum found out about it, she'd strangle me, but I didn't care much at the time. I just wanted to night to pass and for my head to clear...