20 Weeks – Chapter 2 (Part 2)
“Ain’t you supposed to be cleaning the kitchen before work?”
“Ain’t you supposed to sprout a second head and die?”
“Bijuu…” her father’s voice chimed in from his art room.
“Can I speak with you please?”
That was her father… the eccentric… people called him, the artist with the unruly kids that took terrible advantage of him.
Bijuu looked around the room for help, but the only one to even notice her distress was the unfamiliar boy sitting next to her. All the rest were pretending to be busy with anything else.
The boy… well, he smiled down on Bij… just like he understood, and well… that was all the encouragement she needed to pull herself from the depths of the old sofa, and then trudge into the other room.
“What did we discuss about inside and outside chores?” her father, with the long white ponytail asked, without looking up from some magazine image he was dissecting with a small blade.
“But…” Bijuu began, in a perfectly reasonable tone, as she looked out the back window onto an overgrown lawn that was completely littered with every manner of city-living detritus one could possibly imagine.
“I don’t want to hear it Bij.”
Bijuu looked about the filthy ‘art room’ and then back to her father, who rarely left his chair unless it was to collect another beer, or to go to the bathroom.
For everything else, he had someone.
“Just get it done, before you go to work,” he said, again, not bothering to look up from his… art. Art that would never be finished. Art that would collect dust on shelves overfilled with crap already.
“I hate it here,” Bijuu said, as she turned on her heel to storm off towards the kitchen.
“Don’t we all?” her father replied dryly, just as the band kicked off their next song.
An hour-and-a-half later, and Bijuu was finally headed off to work.
Or… at least she’d hoped she would be.
However, the moment she stepped out onto the driveway she realized that was not going to be so easy.
“Excuse me!” she shouted over the lead singer who was crooning wicked into the mic, “I ain’t nobody to fuck with, ain’t nobody fuck with me…”
“Excuse me! Mr. Outside Chores!” she yelled at her brother.
“I have a flat tire I need you to fix.”
But the band just played on.
“Bijuu… your brother is busy. You can see that. Figure it out yourself. You’re not helpless,” her father’s voice called to her, on a flat note that seemed to pervade the room, though, once again, everyone else pretended not to hear.
“God Damnit! Fucking unfair! Every time I need something or… god forbid… somebody… Argh!!” she hollered as she stormed from the room, letting the screen door slam on her way out.
Out onto the driveway she allowed herself a moment to cry. And them, wiping the tears with the back of her hand she took a deep breath and considered her options.
It was a good paying job, in a shitty area with few enough of them. And… it was the only way she knew of to get enough money together to finally leave this goddamn house…
She turned and spat on the driveway, a bit of venom… she hoped with curse the unholy ground.
“Need some help?” A voice she didn’t recognize called from the doorway.
Bijuu, the sixteen-year-old with the 100-year-old eyes, warily assessed the unfamiliar face.
It was the boy from the sofa.
“I don’t even know you…”
“Well Ben… Do you know how to change a tire?”
The six-foot tall, dark-haired, dark-eyed, hunk of pure muscle smiled with the most baby-face-smile Bijuu had ever seen.
“I think I can figure it out.”
And together… it took them ‘bout twenty minutes to get the spare tire on.
“You’re lucky, it’s a full-sized one. Then again… I guess Jeeps are meant to off-road, so… getting home on one of them donuts, when you’re stuck up in the mountains, would be kinda tough…”
The boy was rambling on now, and Bijuu desperately needed to get to work, and pee. But she just couldn’t cut off here one-and-only savior.
Finally though, when he was done trying to impress her, she reached up on her tip-toes and gave him a small peck on the cheek.
“Thank you! Without you… I’d have absolutely zero faith in this world.”
And with that… the bouncy half-Taiwanese and half-British lass was jumping into her Jeep and speeding away.
© Raena Exe 2020
*All characters, places, and events are completely fictional.
*All rights reserved.
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