I run towards the house, my hair disheveled, my lips swollen as I hurriedly send Ash a message
You- ‘Black and white roses for my funeral please, and for the love of everything holy don’t invite Uncle Vernon, he’s a pain in the butt”
Ashton- ‘Where would you want me to hold the ceremony? Ooh, and I’m not paying”
I gasp unbelievingly, it was HIS fault that I was running late for the annual ‘family meal’! It was this tradition in our family where all the fat uncles who wore obnoxious ties and aunts who wore fake pearls and didn’t even give any cash came together and acted like they liked each other and drank mum’s expensive wine, much to her annoyance. They were all mum’s age, except Uncle Vernon, who was much older. Aunt Margaret was mum’s real sister, who she really despised to be honest, and the others were her cousins.
I was about to type out an entire paragraph with perfect punctuation as to why I have all the right to be mad at him, when suddenly I saw the time, and boy did I run fast. If Usain Bolt saw me right now, he would be weeping out of pride. I was gasping by the time I reached the front door, and put my hands on my knees to get a little breather before I got bombarded with questions, before I could rest thought, my sister opened the door.
“Look who’s back, and look at your state! Got some action did you?”
She wiggled her eyebrows suggestively, but I waved her off
“No juicy details? Well, suit yourself, anyhoo, the fees of saving your butt my dear darling brother would be 20 dollars and a trip to Wendy’s. I only accept cash by the way.”
She handed out her hand, waiting expectantly, and I had a rather sever temptation to ask her to piss off, but then again, my life was in her hands. I sighed as I took out 20 dollars out of my pocket, and begrudgingly put them in her hand and she pocketed them looking all smug.
“Oooh, if aunt Margaret asks like the nosy person she is, tell her you were volunteering at the church. Everyone believed me except for mum I think”
She rolled her eyes as someone called her back in, muttering a barely audible “these people can’t lift up their darn butts to get a drink can they? And it’s only 1:30 in the afternoon for christ’s sake”
I chuckled softly as I entered, but was stopped by my mum as she eyed me from head to toe. Uh-oh
‘So, this ‘volunteering’ that you were doing…..” she drawled, enclosing the word volunteering with her fingers. I stammered as I tried to make an excuse, but she smirked instead.
“Oh pish posh! I was your age once, I know everything you youngsters do, and everyone you do”
She looked at me smugly, as I blushed furiously, opening and closing my mouth like a hammered chicken in the corner of wendy’s
“Well, go on, what are you waiting for? Your uncle Stephen to wake up from the grave, or for your Aunt Margaret to finish another bottle of my really expensive wine?”
I scrunched my nose in disgust, they were definitely the worst ones, worse than uncle Vernon.
I hurried in the house to distract Aunt Margaret; mum really loved the wine that she was chugging down her throat like water, and partly to have a look in the mirror to fix up my appearance, well whatever was fixable anyway; I looked like an ape who just escaped from the zoo. My plan to run to my room however went to the ditch as soon as Aunt Margaret spotted me.
“Oh, here’s my favourite nephew” she smiled, showing her yellowed teeth. I grumbled something about her being very cheap when it came towards giving cash to her ‘favourite nephew’, but put on a rather fake and tight lipped smile as I walked towards her, earning a harsh nudge from my sister Maria who entered the dining room at the same time carrying an insanely scrumptious dish. Maria and I shared a secret glance that said ‘Ugh these people hog too much food’ as Aunt Margaret, or as I liked to call her Aunt Poop-in-her-fudge ( Her name coming from an incident that involves her eating fudge that my dog ‘accidently’ pooped in and calling it, and I quote ‘mama-licious’, but that’s a story for another time) released her disgusting breath onto my face while talking about how tall I had grown. Like seriously woman, I haven’t grown an inch taller since you last saw me.Instead of saying that I smiled lightly, shrugged and said something along the lines of getting the non-existent tall genes of the family. Non existent because my dad was 5’4 and my mom was 5’6, but I had learnt the hard way never to underestimate her, she could kick some ass alright. I shivered in disgust as I sat next to her. You see, it wasn’t just because of her smelly breath, or her yellow teeth, or because she thought my name was Ted for 5 years, or because she stepped on my dog’s tail, or because she stole my mints 4 years back, or because she always eats all the food. No, the reason why I hated her was a little deeper than that. It was because that woman liked Hawaiian pizza. Yes, you heard me right, THAT was the reason. But if I’m being honest, even if she didn’t like that I would have hated her, maybe I would have used the fact that her blouse is always too tight and the buttons look like they’re going to explode any second. Yes, like I said, I would always find a way to hate her.
I looked around the table and noticed that Uncle Vernon was sitting right across from me, I mentally gagged, and on his right was Auntie Liz. She was blonde with strikingly pretty blue eyes, the sweetest one, unmarried and very rich. I loved that lady, she gave me 100 dollars last time she came, and next to her was Aunt Margaret. On Uncle’s left sat Auntie Becky, who again, I loved, she always got me out of trouble. She was a little plump woman in her 40s, with brown curly hair who got me very cool presents. Mum and Maria were sitting next to her. They looked poles apart, yet looked kind of similar. Maybe it was the fact that they both enjoyed embarrassing me that made them look alike, anf finally, on my right was Aunt Margaret, and on my left was Uncle David.
I sighed contently as I looked at the food displayed infront of me, I mean, its all worth it, and dinner was going good so far, until of course Aunt Margaret opened the smelly dungeon she calls her mouth.
“So, I heard this very famous actor said he was ‘gay’” She made a face as if she were disgusted, and I held my fork just a little bit tighter. Did I mention another reason I hated her because she was the epitome of being homophobic?
Uncle Vernon joined in, looking very interested in the conversation now that it was about shaming someone for their choice in gender
“I heard it too. This generation makes me wonder where we went wrong. These people would suffer in the pits of hell” As the conversation between those two continued, my grip on my fork hardened. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Auntie Becky and Liz’s face contort into disgust, I saw mom look at me apologetically, and Maria looked like she was about to do some serious damage, but the thing was, I was so done with these homophobes, and so I decided to create havoc
“You do realise your favourite nephew is gay right?” I saw all of them let out a gasp, but mum sighed like she knew this was going to happen, and maria looked proud.
“Yep, likes men kinda gay, kisses men kinda gay, has-“ My little rant was interrupted as Aunt Margaret gasped loudly and sat up so suddenly that her plate fell off the table, making all the food fall down. I frowned a little as I saw little ants come and nibble on the food
“This is a sin, a disgrace, come with me now to the church and maybe I can cure you of this disease”
I made a face at her, before telling her the real sin was her dropping mums oh so delicious food. Mum stifled a laugh at that, secretly enjoying the drama, but I knew Aunt Margaret had crossed the line after calling me by a highly offensive name. Mum got up, seething.
“Listen here you old hag! That is my SON, and I wont let you say one more word, do you hear me, not one!” Aunt Margaret tried to say something but mum cut her off
“And don’t you dare try using the older sister card! You come into MY house, eat My food, drink My expensive wine, insult My son, and you ask me to tolerate that?! One more word from you and you’ll have to go back home by FOOT! I wont pay your bus fare! Do you hear me lady?!”
Mum cleared her throat, looking quite proud as she saw how scared Aunt had become. I shared a look with her and silently thanked her as she bossily asked everyone to start eating again, and it was going just fine until that darned woman opened her mouth again and whispered something about gays going to hell, which was more than audible in the deafening silence, but before mum could say a word, Maria got up and started to leave, much to our surprise
“And where do you think you’re going young lady?” Asked uncle Vernon
“Hell apparently” she smugly answered.
Gasps were heard, and this time from mum and I too, neither of us knew. Aunt Margaret however densely stared, until maria groaned and said in an annoyed voice, all respect forgotten
“I’m a lesbian you dense woman, I like girls, and the best part, I think your daughter has a little crush on me, she confessed today”
And all hell broke lose. Profanities were thrown around, dishes were broken, food was thrown, yells were heard, but I was oblivious to it all as I realised my sister just came out.
I looked up at her proudly through the chaos that she had just created, wiping a fake tear.
“I’ve never been prouder of you Maria”, I said sounding just like mother.