Friday, September 30, 2016

everything is really OK

everything is really OK




There was so much to do with such little time. Thankfully, Irwin helped her unload her car and took down all the stuffy bulletin board items of Mrs. Harrison's.

Julie carefully put the old teacher's belongings away and put her kid friendly posters up, to make the room a bit more cozy. She'd always wanted her own classroom. Now she finally could be all on her own.

And she was on her own now. She'd left Teddy and his parents. She'd wanted too, for a very long time. But she needed a real job first.

If she'd only known how much she had to go through before becoming a teacher, she would have invested her life in something else. But she'd wanted to teach since she was a little girl. Her father had his way of helping people as a police officer, and maybe she was doing this for him. Although, he'd died so long ago on duty as a police officer, she needed reminders of who he was. His framed photo was the first to go on her desk.

She teared up, immediately.

She was so happy. She wanted to stay happy. Seriously, she hadn't been happy in a long while.

"Its looking great." Irwin gave the thumbs up. Julie smiled happily.

"Well, you were a great help." She told him.

"I think we should celebrate." He smiled. "At least, lets eat somewhere? My treat."

She looked around the room. She guessed it was enough. It wasn't along until she locked up, and they went in separate cars to the diner that she remembered when she was a kid.

"So, everything is going OK?" Irwin wanted to know while they waited for the roast beef specials.

"Yeah, I think so." She told him she had her own place. "My car is paid for. Even if its quite old."

She stirred her iced tea with a straw. "I have been officially single for two whole months now."

Irwin looked at her, as if that was suppose to be a joke.

"I let it go on, far too long." She confessed. "I dunno why I didn't do it sooner." She looked a the ice cubes in her glass as she thought of her ex-husband Teddy who already had a child with someone else.  "It wasn't actually a big deal, the divorce. I mean, we stayed apart, more than we ever really stayed together."

But she did miss his parents. She would always feel more of a daughter than a daughter-in-law to them.

It was good to talk to Irwin. She wished they'd stayed in touch. Maybe they could, now.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

only the beginning

only the beginning




It was only a Thursday. Still, Friday felt so far away. Irwin remained stoic with his students. He was not going to discuss what happened to Mrs. Harrison's son, but she'd been out since last week. Various subs were in the room across the hall.

Still the question remained. Was everyone on heroin these days? As it was, he'd kept the peace, as of late with fortune cookies. Who knew... kids would work so hard for fortune cookies. Irwin didn't even have to give out coupons, but if a student collected enough over the entire month..the student  could get a candy bar.

Some were still working on math problems. A few had out their library books. It was actually quiet. Could he possibly enjoy this quiet time?

Soon enough, the bell rang, and not one stayed behind to talk about the terrible thing to happen to the teacher's 30-something year old son. He was in a coma.

Still, it was a somber alert. He didn't really know Mrs. Harrison, that well. Except, she was the authority on everything, and she hated the way he taught.  But he could see it coming. She would be back, furious as ever. Screeching, practically to all her students. That was the way to keep them in line.

Irwin did want to enjoy teaching, but there was no joy when it came to Mrs. Harrison. Still, he was a bit melancholy, thinking of her son. He felt so sad. Imagining himself, in that very state. Comatose and alone in the world.

He shook the thought. He hated shots. Needles were the worst.

He looked up to see Mrs. Harrison's room still lit. And there was someone with a big box. It wasn't Mrs. Harrison, but a young woman. She looked slightly familiar.

There was a tickle at the bottom of Irwin's throat. He needed a cough, but he wouldn't.

"Juliet?" He could barely get out.

"Oh my god." She smiled. "Are you kidding me?" She laughed. Before he knew it, they embraced and it wasn't clumsy at all. It was actually perfect.

Irwin sighed, took a step back. He hadn't seen the young African American woman since last year. She'd done her student teaching here. Honestly, something like this never happened. Not that Irwin knew of.

"Well, you were impressive." He nodded with an open smile.

"Ha, ha." She shook with laughter as she went to put some of Mrs. Harrison's stuff in a box. "I mean, I was subbing, a lot, but not at this school."

"Mrs. Harrison..is..is really retiring?" He wanted to say this called for a celebration, but that would be totally wrong.

Julie nodded.

"I..I hate the circumstances, but the timing was so perfect for me." She sighed, ever so straight lipped.

Irwin only nodded.

She turned to him with a quick smile. "I'm really glad..you're across the hall."

Laughter filled him up. Irwin couldn't remember a certain happiness like this. He'd so enjoyed doing nothing with her. They'd drank coffee together in the teacher's lounge. She'd showed him her binder of bulletin board ideas. He knew he could learn a lot from her.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

just saying

just saying




"Are your parents splitting up?" Will knew he shouldn't ask, but he was awkward that way. Although, as of late he felt himself change. Grow up, perhaps. It felt like nothing fit the way it used too. Still, Will knew he would always be a bump on a log, for the most part.

But people were looking at him, differently. At his height.  His stature. Even the coaches wanted him to try out for football, but he'd never cared much for the sport. He thought it was the most boring game ever. It was like you were waiting to get hurt.

Still, Gabby treated him like she always did. They still talked. Texting, to be exact. Although, she found her evening job at the recording studio most rewarding. Will shelved books at the library.

"Technically, they are not my parents." She fumed.

"But..but you'd like them to be." Will thought, anyway.

She only sighed as if she couldn't be close enough to him on the couch.

"This, all has to do with Macy." The drama in her voice only made Will crack up.

"You, aren't worried, are you?" He knew she would be, but she'd never say. After all this time, he pretty much had her figured out. She wanted to be so cool. Still, he could detect the little girl she used to be, who loved to be creative in the mess of things.

"Of course not."

Will looked at her indifferent. He went back to watching the old TV show, but she put his arm around her, as if all she needed was him.

"I think you need a cat." He then said. "Or a dog."

"What?" She pulled away and looked at him, almost in a pout.

"Just saying." He smiled, looked her in the eye. "You, want everyone to take care of you. Maybe you need to take care of something, too."

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

small talk


small talk




"Ric, you didn't need to bring Gabby all this way. We could have picked her up." Easy told him while the coffee dripped for a fresh pot of late night coffee.

Clare looked for the last of the Girl Scout cookies. It was a small offering, but she doubted Ric came to eat.

Gabby was already watching TV with Will.

"I needed..I needed someone to talk too." Ric looked at both of them as if needed to be here. "I..I hope we survive this." He told them about Macy's pregnancy.

Clare gathered that Ric was happy about it, although, he couldn't show it.

"I should have gotten on a plane a long time ago and just got her. I mean, how..how did we just let..let her stay in England for so long?" He sounded as if it didn't seem real, yet he'd been the culprit to let it happen.

"Hey, a girl can get pregnant anywhere." Clare cracked a smile, but Easy looked over at her as if  it wasn't very funny.

Oh, how she needed a cigarette, but she sighed instead and went straight to the black coffee.

"Maybe..maybe if..if Gabby could stay with you guys, a few days." Ric didn't touch his coffee, but hugged himself, instead.

Easy nodded.

"We love having her here."  Clare smiled.

"What I need to do, is..is find out what my daughter wants to do." Ric was even lipped. He looked as if this might be harder to do, than any battle field he ran through when he was in the military.