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The Defining Phrase - Chapter 8: Familiarity
The Defining Phrase - Chapter 8: Familiarity
11/26/08 at 07:44 PM by cassusriff
Chapter 1: Complacency
Chapter 2: Unexpected
Chapter 3: Breakdown
Chapter 4: Passion
Chapter 5: Ambiguity
Chapter 6: Conflict
Chapter 7: Secrecy

Back at work again. It's funny how mundane my life is despite all the drama and confusion.

Work, school, eat, sleep, repeat.

But life is a bit different these days. This love triangle is wearing me down. I can't imagine how the girls must feel. I can't imagine.

I can't go there again.

Work. Work. Work. Figure this out later.

The day goes through. I text Lizzy. I text Shelby. I'm still under my cloak. I'm hiding and guessing and thinking and I feel sick. I think of Lizzy and I become anxious. Five days. I think of Shelby and the butterflies come back.

I'll know everything in a little over a week. All my questions will be answered. My defining phrase will be clarity.

But first. Pain. Confusion. Secrecy.

Shelby and I make plans for tonight. We will sneak her out again. I don't have class tonight so I can relax a bit. I love thursdays for that reason alone. A day when I only work is a day that is full of excitement and relaxation. When I graduate I will be the happiest man alive to only have eight hour days. To be able to go home and drink a beer or play some guitar or watch some TV without passing out from exhaustion. One day I'll have time to spend with one person. One day I'll have time to do the mundane things and not always feel stressed. One day.

Not today.

I leave to pick up Shelby. We hold hands as we drive back to my place. She softly kisses my knuckles as she holds my hand. She kisses the tips of my fingers. My stomach is turning in ways I never could imagine. She looks beautiful sitting in my passenger seat. This feeling feels too familiar. It's been less than a week. It shouldn't feel this right. I keep thoughts of the trip out of my mind. This is Shelby's time. I will be in LA soon enough. I will know all of this soon enough.

We get to my place around midnight. We watch a movie in my room and lie together. The night is gorgeous and simple. The passion returns. We cuddle and talk and the conversation goes to a bad place. We change the subject and then stay silent for a while.

We kiss and the night glows through my window. We hold each other and kiss each other almost harshly. There is so much desire in us. There is so much beauty in every moment that our lips are locked.

We fall asleep in each other's arms.

3am. We wake up. We share passion yet again. I feel like I've done this with her for years. Everything feels familiar. Everything feels right. We fall asleep yet again.

7am. We wake up in a flurry.

"Shit! I have to get home!" she says.

We gather ourselves in a hurry. I have to drive her to Roseville and then back in an hour and a half. That's not going to happen. We drive. Our minds are racing. She knows she will get in trouble. I know I will be late to work. We are only 10 minutes away and her mom calls. Shelby doesn't answer. I drop her off a block away from her street and she runs away. No goodbye kiss.

I drive away quickly. I'm supposed to be at work in 20 minutes. I'm a mess. It's Halloween. I'm supposed to be at work to participate in the ridiculous games. I'm supposed to be Freddy from Scooby Doo and taking pictures with the rest of my Scooby Crew. I drive quickly and deliberately. I get back to my place and get into my costume quickly. I'm wearing my ridiculous blonde wig and thinking of every excuse I can. My mind drifts to Shelby for a moment. I wonder if that's how things will end with us, like a gunshot to the back of the head.

I wonder if I'll get the opportunity to be with the girl I want or if I'll just lose my chance like that, in an instant. I text Shelby to see if everything is okay with her. She responds and says everything is fine. We don't text again.

I get to work and rush downstairs to where the activities are. I get there an hour late. Everything is pretty much done. I help everyone clean up and head up to my desk. I start working and I email my supervisor,

"Hey, I was helping them set up for the activities and forget to clock in, can you adjust my timecard?"

I get a response 15 minutes later, "Yes, I'll take care of it."

Lucky. I can't expect to ride this luck forever, but for now it'll do. The rest of the day at work is awesome. No one really works, we spend all day eating the endless amounts of food that everyone brought in. I give my co-worker a check for $900 and she hands me my new computer. I feel a kind of happiness I've never felt.

I text Lizzy about my excitement. I go home during lunch to drop my stuff off and take off my costume. I come back to work and finish up. I'm so immensely happy I can't bear it. I start to worry. Days like this are always a set up for something bad. My life never goes this well without something big.

I'm about 15 minutes from finishing up at work. I look at Twitter to pass the time. I see that my brother posted something, "This just became the worst Halloween ever."

I know what happened. He got fired. My roommate just lost his job. My brother, who is already going through so much shit, just had the hammer come down on him. I don't even know how I'm going to afford the LA trip, and now I don't even know how I'll afford to pay my rent next month.

I know what I have to do. I go straight to my mom's house. I tell her the news and we talk it out. We try to figure out what to do. While I talk to her I text Lizzy and Shelby. I tell them what happened. The responses are different.

Shelby sends a few texts asking me if I needed to talk and offering words of encouragement.

Lizzy seems upset at me. I text her back and forth for a bit and then she says, "Okay, well goodnight I guess."

I'm confused, I break away from my family and call her. We talk for a bit. She is really upset. I'm extremely calm. I had prepared for this. I never live life just thinking everything will always be constant. My parents said they would supplement his portion of the rent until we figured something out. I'm okay. I have no worries. I'm focused towards fixing the problem and not dwelling on it.

She says, "So you're probably not coming to LA anymore right?"

I freeze for a moment. Really? She's really making this about her right now? I talk her down from her anxiety and say that I'm still coming to LA no matter what. I say that everything is going to be okay. That I am built for moments like this. That me and my family rise up and we will be fine. She's upset. I don't understand. She says that my problems are her problems. I respect that, but if I'm okay I don't understand why she is so worried.

She pushes me off the phone. She's still edgy despite my attempts to calm her down. I go outside and speak with my family for a bit. My mom and I decide to go see Sean and talk to him. I text Lizzy on the way home and she starts to calm down a bit. I get home with my mom and Sean is sitting on the couch, still in costume. I feel terrible for him. I can't believe the company let him go while he was in a Joker costume. How ridiculous was their lack of professionalism?

My mom and Sean talk and he blocks her off. I stay out of their usual bickering. They never see eye to eye and tonight won't be any different. I open my new computer, the part of my day I was looking forward to the most. I get on ichat and Lizzy happens to be up still. I convince her to get back online and videochat with me. Something about seeing each other in live action makes everything better. We have a cute chat and a fun time. She finally goes to bed after about an hour. My mom and Sean talk for a bit and she leaves.

I talk with Sean and encourage him that we will find a way through all of this. But tonight, we just need to let it all go and calm down. He agrees.

Shelby texts me and asks how I am. I tell her it has been a crazy day and she asks if I want her to come over to talk. I say yes and she comes over. She's dressed as some sort of witch/vampire thing. I don't really remember what it was, just that she was wearing a cape and some sexy boots and dark makeup.

We sit in my room and talk. I feel comforted for the first time that night. She doesn't stay long because I have class the next morning. The day feels like a really unfortunate event sandwiched by some really great events.

I am still confused. But I'm finding comfort in certain things. Life is looking up for me and looking bleak for others so close to me. All I know is that I have class early in the morning.

All I know is what I have at this very moment. And all I have is my piece of mind.

To Be Continued...
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