Chapter 3

“You heard me, you arrogant, little monster!”
“H-how? What happened?” My mother looked at me with a face full of anger, confusion, grief, and hatred.
“I told you, you idiotic twit! It’s all because you wanted your cake! You just couldn’t live without your beautiful cake, could you?!
“I hate you!” She stomped over to the car, ripped open the door, reached in the back seat for my clothes bag, and threw it at me. “Take your stupid clothes! And don’t even think of coming home!” With that, she got in the car, with the passenger door hanging open, and sped off, nearly running my feet over with the tires.
I stood there trying to understand what in the world was going on. Dad’s dead? Because of me wanting my cake? This doesn’t make sense. Still thinking of my mom’s warning, I picked up my bag and started walking in the direction I saw the two piercing red eyes on an old grey face trail off.

“Good. She’s leaving.” After waiting outside for several hours, my mom had finally come out the house. As she backed out of the driveway, I replayed my plan in my head again. Wait until she’s off the street, then go in. Get my black duffel bag out the right side of my closet. Get all of my favorite clothes, money, my Iphone charger and headphones, Eric’s picture, any special books, jewelry, pictures, toys, DVDs, and cds, and my medicine. Go in Mom and dad’s room. Get dad’s watch, our photo album, dad’s drawing of his car, his diplomas, high school yearbook and certificate, his address book, my college money, my birth certificate, and other medical and government information and papers, and his extra wedding photo. Get Mom’s locket. Leave keys on kitchen door mat, by the mail slot. Leave everything else. Those last words hurt the most. Why did I have to leave everything behind because of a mistake, an accident? I shook my head to clear my thoughts. It doesn’t matter anymore. Mom doesn’t want me around, so I’m on my own now. Watching the car turn around the corner and drive out of sight, I emerged from my leafy lookout and began my mission. Once in the house and my room, I opened my closet, to be reminded of my puppy from this morning.

“Bark!” it said.
“Shh. Please be quiet.” As if understanding my plea, it rose up on its hind legs and pulled its front paws up to its mouth. “Aww. So cute.”
“What was that?”
I looked at the puppy. “Oh! It’s you. That’s right you haven’t eaten yet.” I went in the kitchen and found the supply bag for the puppy. I took out the blue polka dotted food and water dishes and filled them.
“Here you go. Eat up. We got a long journey ahead of us. We? I guess my mind automatically decided you’re coming along. Well, that’s better than being alone.”
“Ha ha. Aren’t you cute? Okay I’ll go pack your stuff too then…” we’ll leave. For a while. Hopefully not forever, I thought. I went back into my room got my bag and my stuff. Went to my parents’ room. Got their stuff. Went to the kitchen. Got the supply bag. Put the extra food away, poured out the water, and put them in the bag. I picked up the black leash and collar.
“Come here.” The puppy walked toward me and put its head down for me to put them on it.
“You’re really smart.” I kneeled down, slipped the bow off its neck and slid the collar on.
“Let’s go. Good bye home,” I said, walking out the door, locking it behind me, then sliding the keys through the mail slot.
I walked down the road thinking about where I would go. Because we spent a lot of time together as a family, and my first heartbreak, I never bothered making friends again. I have no idea where any of my other relatives are, especially my grandparents. Also nobody else would be bothered to put up with a child put out by my mother, because she was the most civilized person in the neighborhood, according to everyone, so whatever she says is law.
“I guess we should just keep walking. What do you think?”
“Ha ha! You know, I should name you. How about…Caramel?”
“Bark, bark, bark!” She ran in circles, wagging her tail vigorously.
“Caramel it is then, silly puppy. Well, Caramel, how about we just sleep in the park tonight?” Grumble, grumble. “What was that? I know it wasn’t you. You just ate,” I said looking at Caramel. “So it must be me.” I thought about the last time I ate. Breakfast. “Okay, so first I get something to eat, then we go sleep in the park.”
“Good. How about the McDonald’s down the street?”
“Okay. Come on.”

As I walked into McDonald’s, the smell of the food made my mouth water. Luckily, they were a dog friendly restaurant, because I could barely wait to order.
“How may I help you?” the cashier said, glancing around, I suppose looking for my parents.
“A nugget meal, sundae, and an apple pie, please,” I said. I was going to try to make this the closest to a birthday dinner as I could.
“Medium or large meal?”
“Any sauce?”
“Honey mustard.”
“$8.83. For here or to go?”
“Here.” I handed her the money, and she gave me my cup, change, and receipt. I took my cup and went to the soda fountain. Orange or lemonade? “Orange.”
“Miss, your food is ready,” she called.
“Thank you,” I said, walking to the counter. I picked up my food, then Caramel and I walked to a table.
My food looked too good to eat, sitting on my tray. Happy birthday to me. The birthday girl all alone.
“Doesn’t feel like such a happy birthday. But at least I have you, Mel.”
“Ha! Time to dig in. Nuggets and fries first.” I took a bite. “Yum! So tasty and warm.” I gobbled them down quickly. “Dessert time! Pie or Ice Cream?”
“How about both. If I remember correctly, it is your birthday, so why not spoil yourself?” a voice said.
I whipped my head around at the familiar, annoying voice. “What do you want, Elliot?” I snapped.
“Why so cold to an old friend, Little Lex?”
“Don’t call me that and I’m not your friend.”
“Ouch. Still bitter from our last encounter, I see?”
“Just leave me alone.”
“I can’t be concerned about a girl all alone on her birthday? Which leads me to the question, why are you alone on your birthday? Number 15, right?”
“Shouldn’t you be out with your family or your friends?”
“Buzz off.”
“I mean even someone like you has to have a family or some friends.”
This ticked me off so much that I yelled, “I’m sorry to disappoint you, but at the moment I have no family and thanks to you, I have no friends!”
“I’m not going to bother asking or care about the family thing, but it’s not my fault your friends don’t like you enough to hang around.”
“You are just as much of an insensitive jerk as when we last saw each other. Only this time-”
“Only this time I’m handsomer and richer than last time?”
“Only this time, you are a bigger idiot, pest, annoyance, and heartless brat! Drop the fake sincere act! It’s completely see-through! Your stupid face caused my life to be miserable and now you show up on, what you obviously know, my birthday and blame everything that happened on me!? Well get a clue! You started this whole thing! You asked me out! You dated me! You abandoned me! And I hate you for it, you rich snob! I! Hate! You!”
Suddenly, Elliot was in front of me, leading in so we were face to face, closer that he should have been. His short, dirty blond hair brushing against my shoulder almost reminded me of why I fell for him in the first place. However, with his brown eyes staring into my blue ones, he whispered, “Do you need me to remind you of your importance to me? Or do you clearly remember, as I suspect you do?” and I instantly remembered why I could care less about him now. He was still a player. I was still better than him.
I pushed him away. “Get off of me! Go away! I don’t feel like dealing with you now.”
“Bark!” chimed in Caramel.
“Oh, you got a little mutt I see. It really does suit you. Pathetic and helpless just like you,” he said with a smirk plastered on his face.
“Caramel is not a mutt, pathetic, or helpless! And neither am I!”
“Caramel? That’s a stupid name. Anyway, keep your place, Lex. See you later, sweetheart. And ditch the mutt.”
“Don’t talk to us like that!”
“Whatever. Later. And by the way, your birthday looks like it sucks. Have fun!” he joked as he walked out the front door, without any food.
“Shut up!”
“Grr!” growled Caramel.
“You don’t like him either, huh?”
Elliot Davis was 5 feet and 10 inches of arrogance, annoyance, and narcissism. He was one of those guys who thought just because he was rich, he could have anything he wanted. I was one of those things.
The first time we met was when I was in 5th grade. He was in 8th. He was the most popular guy in school, adored by everyone (the way he liked it). My friends (back when I had any), knowing I had a major crush on him, tricked me into talking to him. At first I was super shy, then we just kept talking and learning more about each other. Finally, he ended up asking me out. Of course, stupid 11 year old me said yes (big mistake). We went out for, what I thought to be, the best year of my life. I loved it, at that time.
What I foolishly did, was thought he loved me. The first day of 6th grade for me, first day of freshman year at high school for him, I wanted to congratulate him on a new school year. So I went to see him after school and he was standing on the steps with his friends. I walked over and called him.
“Hey Elliot. How was school?”
He turned around and looked at me as if I was an alien, which I guess in his mind I was for being there.
“What do you want?” he asked.
“What? Am I not allowed to see my boyfriend at his school?”
He snickered, “Sorry, I don’t want to date you anymore.” Then, this blond haired girl, covered in makeup and jewelry, in a tiny hot pink mini-skirt, a too-tight tank top, and the highest of pink heels walked up. He put his arm around her waist, and they kissed.
He looked at me again.
“See. I found someone much better. Go home, Lex. Quit embarrassing yourself. This isn’t the place for little girls.”
I had seen and heard enough, so I made a break for it. I ran non-stop home. Mom wasn’t there at the time, but Dad was. I ran straight for his arms. He hugged me, I cried, and though he never asked what was wrong, he understood and held me until I feel asleep, saying things like, “I’m sorry. You will find someone much better than him. You’re way too good for a jerk like that. You aren’t his? So what. He’s missing out on the beautiful young lady right here in my arms. And I will always love you more than any other boy in this world.”
“Even more than Eric would have?” I said sniffling and half sleep.
“No, even more than Eric does.”


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