Author's Note: This is the novel I'm working on. I've hit Writer's Block. Advice?
I was never normal. People whispered behind my back, called me names. If they only knew I heard those whispers. Most of the bullies who whispered behind my back were the ones who were insecure and took joy in making others feel more insecure. Even though I didn’t show it, these people hurt my feelings. They made me feel like I was lower than them. Like I was just some scum on the floor that they had the liberty to kick at it, rub it the wrong way. Like I wasn’t human.
In my mind, I attempted to think that those people were all just playing this huge prank on me. Someday they would stop and say that they truly liked me and wanted to be my friend. But in my heart, I knew that it wasn’t a prank. I knew that these people didn’t like me. In fact, they hated me.
A funny word, that is, hate. You can tell your mother that you hate her, but you know you love her. You can tell your best friend that you hate them, but tomorrow you’ll be closer than ever. You can tell your siblings that you hate them, but you know that you’ll always be there for each other. But then it comes to me and the other people. Those other people, they truly hate me. They hate me with all of their heart.
But, for whatever reason, when I had to leave those other people, I didn’t want to.
“Liv! Breakfast is ready! Noah! Breakfast!” Dad called.
I slid my Pura Vida wave ring on, straightened my shirt, and tightened my ponytail before walking out of my room, and into the hallway that led to the stairs. When I walked into the hallway, I was met with the sad sight of my younger brother Noah in his pajamas with bed-head hair.
“Noah, you know Dad isn’t going to let you go downstairs where people could see you from outside on a day like this, dressed like that. Go back in your room, change, comb out your hair, then try to come down, you Oompa Loompa.” I raised my eyebrows and crossed my arms as Noah looked at me with a dumbfounded look on his face. Despite that, he turned around and walked back into his bedroom.
With triumph, I walked downstairs and to the dining table. My mom was already sitting at the table, and my dad was in the process of cooking breakfast. I sat down across from my mom, who was devouring an omelet.
“Good morning, Mom. Hey, Dad. Oh, that smells good.” Raising my body from my chair a bit, I looked at the breakfast display. A smile played on my lips at the thought of a homemade breakfast.
“Yup. Special occasion, special food.” Dad placed two plates of waffles and omelets at the center of the table with a smile, and I pounced on it. As I shoved a piece of the waffle into my mouth, Noah came rushing down the stairs. For once, he was dressed in nice, clean jeans and a formal polo shirt. To add on, his hair was flipped to one side with gel.
“Special occasion, Noah actually cares about how he dresses,” I giggled. Noah shot a glare at me as he sat down next to Mom. Dad was hiding a smile as he tried to give me a stern look. After putting another plate of waffles down, Dad sat down next to me.
“Now, everyone knows that today is extremely important. So, Olivia, Noah, you two have to get along. No bickering or fighting. And Amelia, please no shopping at the airport. If you do, we’ll be late. As for me… Well, Liv, you have to remind me not to boss everyone around the entire time. You’re the only one who’s good at that. No offence to you, Noah, Amelia.” Dad nudged me and winked. I smuggled a laugh before digging back into my breakfast. “I can stay as far away from Olivia as possible in the plane, right? ‘Cause I really don’t want to have to be stuck by her for hours,” Noah admitted. My eyes instinctively rolled, but, to my utter surprise, Dad shook his head.
“You two are going to sit right next to each other. Ya’ need to learn how to be nice. After all, we need to make a good impression on people when we get there.”
Mom was quiet, which struck me as odd. Normally, she was yelling at Noah and me for being rude to each other or having bad table manners. This morning, she was calmly eating her breakfast and listening politely. So weird.
I was about to say so, but then Noah jumped up from the table and started to holler.
“Look! Look, look, look! All of the people! They’re outside!” he screamed. The other three of us whipped our heads around and looked out the bay window in the living room. And just like my little brother said, there was a huge crowd of people standing outside in front of our house. A lot of people out there were people that we knew, but then there were total strangers in the mix.
“They’re here to say goodbye to us,” Mom gasped. “They’re really going to miss us.” I nodded, a smile spreading across my face. My best friends Lila, Jo, May, and Kiki were standing together to the side, holding signs that read We will miss you!!! Love you!!!!
“What are we waiting for, peeps?! Let’s go say hi!” Noah yelled again. He ran to the front door and bursted out, me not far behind. The second both of us were outside, we ran to our closest friends. I heard Mom and Dad come out behind us.
“Lila! Kiki! Jo! May! I’m so happy to see you guys! But what are you doing here?”
Each of the girls took their turn in giving me a hug before replying.
“It was all May’s idea. She said that since you were leaving today, we should show you and Noah and your parents just how much we’re gonna miss you!” Kiki gushed. The other part of the squad nodded in agreement. I hugged them all one more time before waving and moving onto others.
Half of an hour later, I had at least said hi to everyone in the crowd. Mom, Dad, Noah, and I were standing on the front porch, watching the crowd disperse and head back to their own homes. Mom glanced at her watch, beginning to tap her foot impatiently. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see Dad put his hand on her shoulder.
“We’ve gotta get going. The plane leaves in two hours. Grab your carry-ons and get in the car,” Mom directed. Our family obliged and headed inside.
Dad pulled the car up to the parking spot closest to the airport doors. He killed the engine, shoving the keys into his pocket. Mom unbuckled her seat belt and patted Dad’s arm.
“This is it. I’ll pop the trunk open and you guys can get your suitcases out. Right, Amelia?” Dad prompted. Noah looked expectantly at Mom and I still stared out my window at the looming building before us. She took a deep breath before her attempt to be encouraging.
“That’s right, Jonathan. We’re going to have a brand new start. This plane ride starts the journey. And we’ll all be able to be a better person, too.” With that, Mom hopped out of the car and went around to the trunk. Dad pressed a button on the key fob and the hatch raised. A burst of mid-September wind snaked its way through the car. My body shivered, even though I had my jacket on. Noah smiled and leaped out of the car, around to the back.
Silently, I unbuckled the seat belt, sliding out of the Jeep. My eyelids blinked back tears as I grabbed both my carry-on and suitcase. Yet in the moment that Dad got out of the vehicle, I couldn’t stop the water works. Olive skin became streaked with clear water. Noah and Mom still stood behind the car, thunderstruck. I never cried. And that’s exactly why Dad immediately reached over and gave me a tight squeeze, not letting go.
“It’ll be okay, Livvie. We’ll adjust. I know it won’t be the same, but I believe that you’ll be good after a little bit,” Dad reassured me. But I wasn’t so sure. We were moving across the country, and everything was supposed to be okay? There was not a doubt in my mind that it would take a long, long time for things to be okay. And I told my family just that.
“You know, Dad, things won’t be okay! You didn’t have to take that job and force all of us to move, but you did! You want to completely change our lives by moving to the boonies of Ogunquit, Maine! Do you realize that the population of that stupid town is only eight-hundred-and-ninety?! And if you turn to Noah, and ask him what he thinks, don’t! He feels the same way about this move that I do, he just won’t admit it!” Water poured down my face quicker and harder as I jumped away from Dad. He tried to grab my hand, but I yanked it back. Mom attempted to put her hands on my shoulders to comfort me, and I leaped away from her, too. Noah just stayed standing behind the car, watching my outburst. It wasn’t often he got the chance to see me be the one throwing a fit.
“You stop this nonsense right now, Olivia Ann Wells. We have done nothing but make sure that you’re comfortable, and we don’t deserve having you be so, so...so narrow-minded,” Mom insulted. I shut up right there, stopping my tears. “Narrow-minded” was the biggest insult that you could throw at a Wells. We take a lot of pride in being open-minded, so when Mom said that, I was taken aback.
“Thanks, Mom. That really made things clearer, so I can have more of an open mind. Oh, wait! It’s impossible for me to be open-minded, since you obviously declared that I’m stinkin’ narrow-minded!” The waterworks started up again as I angrily grabbed my carry-on and suitcase, storming towards the front doors of the airport.