This one's much shorter than my usual ones. I promise Caddy's stories will be longer in the future; I just need to get some exposition out of the way. This is all connected to the stories in my bio, so I need to get through all the intro so it makes sense without them. I feel guilty about putting the 'latinx' tag, because even though Caddy's mixed she looks white, and I don't even know if I can write her correctly, but I really hope I haven't offended anyone with any of my stories; I'm trying to be inclusive in a non-Jk rowling way.
I made Carson even more of a simp in this story than my other, huh?
"Let's try this again: Caddy, don't you want to be adopted?"
I snort, leaning back in my chair. "If you fixed your hair first, yeah, maybe"
The middle-aged guy puts his hands up to his bald head, a look close to outrage crossing his face for nearly a second. Out of the corner of my eye, I see Ms. Trachard's eyes knitting themselves, so close together that they've probably become one. I look back at the man and his wife before me, their encroaching smiles sickening me. Maybe that could be his superhero power; Middle-Aged Guy, defeating each bad guy one awkward smile at a time.
Ms. Trachard looks up from her clipboard for a second as the couple looks down at their phones, distracted by a text. "Caddy, you're 16 already. You won't get adopted if you keep this up"
"What if I don't want to be adopted?"
She sighs, putting a hand on her face. Ms. Trachard is a 50-something-year-old black lady who thought that getting a degree in social work would do something. I mean, it's 2121; what do people care if someone else is having problems.
Not me, at least. If karma was a bitch to me, then she should at least fuck up someone else's life.
"Then just wait until you're 18," her voice cracks. "You won't be my problem anymore"
Maybe I should feel bad about making her life a living hell. There are thousands of other kids that she could adopt away easily. So why does she always pick me as her special case?
For once, I don't want to be someone else's charity case. Quinn already killed himself to save me. And what am I even doing with his extra time?
"We'll look at some other options first," the wife promises me, her little white blouse tucked neatly into her skirt. "We want to see who else might be interested"
My head shoots toward Ms. Trachard when they leave. "Did you sign off as me?”
“Well,” she huffs, blunt as ever. “I needed to get you adopted. Your chances have been slimming, you know”
“Yeah,” I mumble. “Who the hell wants to adopt a 16-year-old?”
“I’m sure plenty of people would love you. You just have to present yourself in a better way”
“Better way? Are you saying I’m-”
But I can’t finish the sentence. There’s something in her eye that tells me I’ve said enough. Fine. Whatever.
“I didn’t even like them anyway,” I amend. “So... Yeah”
“Please just tell me you’re at least doing fine in school”
The papers at the bottom of my bubblegum pink backpack turn in their graves, moaning with unfinished sentences and red ink scribbled across their half-assed answers. “Well, I’ve submitted everything on time this year”
Ms. Trachard raises an eyebrow hesitantly. “And what are you getting on them?”
“Let’s not talk about that,” I slide out of the chair, sauntering into the hallway.
“Be serious, Caddy. You have to try for once,”
“Yeah,” my arms stretch out as I yawn. “I know”
“Do you? Because I’ve been-”
I accidentally close the door too hard, slamming it in her face. Oh well...
Welcome to the Caddy show; where all your wildest dreams try to kill you. Everything I ever knew is back in that old house, laying in cinders.
And I guess you could say I’m fucking pissed.
But I’m fine! It’s fine, we’re all having a good time! As long as I don’t think about the past, don’t care about what goes on in the present, and don’t even give a shit about my bleak future, I’ll be alright.
In other words, time can go fuck itself. I don’t even know what the old me would think if she heard me say that. Stupid little girls, nestled up in what might be, instead of what is. I’d rather focus on what isn’t there.
Here’s an example; when I walk into school, I know I’m not going to see anyone I care about. Entitled white trash on my left, burnout on my right. Trash skank, huddled girls, and the weirdos. I seamlessly fall into every category, like a puzzle piece you can coax into position.
Quinn used to joke that he could get in everywhere I couldn’t; our parents were mixed half Latina, half white. I embodied only my dad’s pale skin, but Quinn got a mix. At least I got the bluer eyes; they're more a muddy grey.
Well, they were a muddy grey. But I have to believe that Quinn’s alright. Somehow, I know it. He wouldn’t let himself die there, right?
I can barely hear my name being called, that hideous, ugly name. It’s Caddy, not ‘Ms. Dinah’. That’s my mother’s name, and I want to leave her at least that.
“Sure,” I groan, staring down at my phone. In my hand, I carry the labors of my entire (minimal) work ethic in the form of a plasticky pink phone, chunky and heavy. It's at least a few updates behind, slow as hell, and unappealing. On the other hand, it won't break. I've thrown it at my wall at least a thousand times; barely even a scratch. All these other girls have phones as razor-thin as them, etched with movie tickets and shitty quotes they don't really know. All these fake little counter-culture girls who realize they've peaked already.
Maybe I want to be an optimist. Maybe I think the future's gonna be better.
"Caddy," a whisper rasps in my ear as a mechanical pencil gets shoved through my exposed bra strap. I'm about to go off on the dumbass that dared to touch me, but I breathe easy.
"Carson," his name nearly melts on my tongue. My true savior, the only guy I can fuck with in my classes. I'm glad we go to a relatively small (and shitty) school; we share all our core classes. Too bad I chose the better electives. Carson decided to go into more science, engineering, and shop classes. He has it in his head that he's this great mechanic; his car would beg to differ.
If I'm the pink obsessed one, from my hair to my ratty converses, Carson is the opposite. I don't want to sound like the teen movie girl whose boyfriend is the exact 'opposite' of her. Carson isn't like that for me; we're literally just friends.
Okay, that's out of the way. Carson has curly brown hair, grey sweatshirt pulled over his face. He has a few lean muscles that only I notice, pressing softly against the fabric of his blue jeans. Too bad he's not my type. I wonder when he'll finally understand that.
Other girls still won't notice him, even though his face finally cleared up. He grew out of braces. He got some confidence, he got a car. So why does it feel like he's only mine? Everyone else just makes fun of him. Maybe we're both just trapped on the island of misfit toys.
"Where were you last night?" I ask him. "I didn't see you at the party"
"Well..." Carson drifts off, looking at his own finished homework. I groan.
"Are you kidding me, Carson?"
"I had to finish my paper. I'm sorry Caddy, I just don't get it"
"Then don't do it!" my pink hair cascades down onto the side of his desk, covering the names scratched into the plastic.
"Not all of us can just do a Juul all night, Caddy"
"First," I laugh. "There're so many things wrong with that sentence. Second, I can't even afford normal cigarettes. I can't even afford the clothes I'm wearing"
He glances down at my (get this) pink target sweatshirt and unintentionally ripped skinny jeans riding over my thighs. I can't remember if they were supposed to be skinny or not. At least I can pull the look off.
"You need to learn how to be more responsible," Carson chides. You might be wondering; why am I friends with such a fucking loser? Well, there are three reasons. 1: We are the only inhabitants of the 11th circle of high school hell. 3: He always picks up an extra coffee for me on the way. And lets me steal his flaming hot Cheetos.
What is three, you ask? Carson is moldable. I think a lot of people are, but Carson is one of those guys who start out with no emotion. A blank slate, if you think about it. If I couldn't make my life better, I'd improve someone else's. I like to think of it as good karma. Maybe there really is a karma fairy.
Still, I think I'm a bit overdue for a meeting with her. Where is the bitch? I could use a good bag of pixie dust. Something to get out of here.
"Well," I sigh. "It's Friday. You can't do work tonight"
"You have all weekend, Carson. Can't you give me at least some of your time?"
"I mean, I would love to go with you," I wince. It feels like he wanted to drop a word or two (or four) in his last sentence. "How about tonight? You can choose where we go"
"I'll text you the place later," I promise him. The bell rings for our next class like a savior. What is with today? Why is everyone just trying to annoy me? When Carson leaves, a slip of paper falls out of his back pocket.
"Talk to Caddy," the paper reads. "Act normal," right below it, a few words a sentence is crossed out.
"Ask her out"
"Fuck," I mutter as everyone runs past me, trying to get to their next class on time. History can wait; this is so much more important.
All I want to do is change his life. All he wants to do is convince me to love him.
What did I get myself into?