The possibility of me reaching 50k for NaNo in the next two weeks... slim. My plan to write 1.5k a day went down the drain, due to things popping up and this lovely slice of Insomnia I am having at the moment. And it's not the nice type - the type where you can still be productive - It's the horrid type, where your head throbs and all you can think about is sleep and how much you would like to participate in it at that moment. If I had the nice insomnia then I would probably reach NaNo's 50k no problem. Still two weeks, maybe I will get lucky.
(Continued from last weeks snippet)
“Stop it.” I shivered. “You’re being stupid Maggie. It’s two days.” My feet began to carry me forward. The sound of wheels screaming against stone rang in my ears. “Two days and you will be on your way back to London.” I pushed the green gate opened and walked through. “Back home.” I stopped at the porch door, my gaze fixed on the doorbell. “You can do this.”
Before I knew it my right index finger had pressed the bell. The front door opened instantly. My mothers beaming set of white teeth greeted me as she eagerly threw open the porch door. Her strawberry blonde hair had started to fade as it sat in a bob, framing her oval face. Her moss green eyes glinted through the dim light.
The smile came naturally. “Hi ma.”
My mothers arms stretched wide before me and before I knew it the dress bags and I were wrapped in her embrace. Her grip was tight. The familiar smell of lavender and homemade bread rose from her clothing, hitting me hard in the face as I rested my head on her shoulder. I felt the knot in my stomach shrinking as I rested my right hand on her back.
"I’ve missed you,” she whispered, pressing a light kiss on my left cheek.
“I’ve missed you too.” More then I actually realized.
Guilt flooded me. I had been so unfair… but I knew that. As much as I tried to ignore it. As much as I didn’t want to hear it from everyone else. I knew my actions had been harsh and unfair.
My mother pulled back and studied me. “I can smell smoke.” She leant in, her nose wriggled. “You’re smoking? Oh Margret, it’s very bad for you, you-”
“You’ve decorated the hall,” I interrupted, picking my suitcase up and squeezing past her.
I looked around at the new warm yellow walls. The familiar art of country landscapes resting where they always had. The hall walls had always been magnolia. It was a popular shade for decorating but I had always thought it was the wrong one for any hall. You walk into a home and you want to feel warm, cosy and this yellow gave that exact feeling.
“No we haven‘t,” she replied, shutting the door.
“The hall was always magnolia,” I stated turning to face her.
“What your mother means by ‘no’ is that the hall has been like this for the last four years.”
So the hall had basically been decorated, just two years after I left home.
I wonder what else has changed?
I turned to see my father stood in the doorframe of the living room. His expression plain and unwelcoming. I couldn’t say I expected him to be happy to see me, but he couldn’t even force himself to smile, just for the sake of being civil. But that was my father. Stubborn. Straight to the point and opinionated.
He looked older and slightly larger. Silver had started to streak through his jet-black hair and he now wore a beard. It actually suited him. He crossed his arms over his broad chest. His dark brown eyes fixed on mine.
“Welcome home Margaret,” he finally said. “It’s taken you long enough.”
“George,” my mother warned gently.
“I know. I’m…” I sighed, “I’m sorry. I’ve been really busy.” The lie rolled from my lips like always.
“Huh.” He forced a laugh. “So you always say. Explain to me then why Adrian, who lives all the way in America, comes to visit three times a year. When you’re three hours up the road and-”
“George, please don’t do this right now.” My mother sighed, rubbing the bridge of her nose. “She has only just got here.”
“I know that Victoria, which is precisely why I am doing this know. I don’t know when she next intends to grace us with her presence.”
“It’s alright ma.” I was surprised to feel tears gathering in my eyes. “If my father has something to say he can say it.”
"Well thank you for your permission Margret,” he grunted at me.
I hated my father when he was like this.
“Adrian is obviously not as busy as I am.” It was a cheap and petty shot but who cared.
I watched as his face began to turn red, his eyes darkening as he unfolded his arms. That was what I needed. I needed him to be angrier so I could be angry. So I wouldn’t cry like some stupid child who was getting a scolding.
“Besides you haven’t been to visit me,” I finished.
“Excuse me?” his eyes widened in surprise.
“You heard me pa. If I’m ‘only up the road’ as you put it, why haven’t you come to see me?”
“Children come to visit their parents. Parents shouldn’t need to visit their children.“
“What a load of-”
My mothers gaze turned on me. “Margret Louise West, don’t you curse in my house.”
“Don’t you dare try to turn this on me and your mother Maggie,” my father continued, stepping through the doorframe. “After everything you put us through.”
“Oh, George, please-”
I felt my nerve snap. “I apologize for everything, okay? I am sorry!”
“So you have said-”
“There is nothing more to be said. I am sorry I didn’t sit down and talk to you both about everything. About how I felt. It was a spontaneous decision and I handled it wrong… but… I paid you back, I-”
“This has nothing to do with money! This is to do with you not being home for six years. Not visiting! For short phone calls every few weeks! Do you know how many people you hurt?” his hands went to his hips.
“I can’t do this right now.” I grabbed my suitcase and headed towards the door.
“That’s right Margret, run away again-”
I felt my jaw tense, my teeth crunched together. “I am going to stay at one of the hotels. I’m here for Jess’ wedding then I’m going home,” I said without looking at him.
“I’m surprised you even decided to come-”
“STOP IT!” My mother voice seemed to shake the entire house. “Margret, you’re staying here.
"It is not open for debate. George go in the living room and please keep your opinions to yourself!”
“There will be a time for this, but it isn’t tonight.” I heard my father shuffling back into the living room, the door slammed shut behind him. “Now go and take your stuff to your room Maggie, I will make you a cup of tea.” I turned around and watched as she wandered off into the kitchen.
Two minutes. I’ve been here two minutes and… what did I expect? Flowers and a welcome home sign?
Stepping Stones by Elizabeth Morgan is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.