I’m getting back into the swing of things. My writing seems to be coming easier and I am finally back in my happy place. Why did I ever leave it??
Here is the 3rd short story from the prompt challenge this week. Feel free to let me know what you think!
Taking the Job
I had run to the kitchen to grab some towels. My sister had done it again, slicing open her hand on who knows what. She is such a klutz, she takes after our mother in that. I take after mother in the way I take care of my younger sister. Since our mother passed away it has been up to me to take care of Tessa. Father left us long ago, mother passed away when I was 21 and Tessa was only 18. We were old enough to take care of ourselves, but we were not ready for it. I had to drop out of college to take on a couple of jobs. I forced Tessa to stay in college, I wanted her to have the life I wouldn’t get. I figured I would go to college again one day.
That was the plan anyways. I soon found out that Tessa had been kicked out of college for a prank she pulled with a few friends. Now, she sits around the house, eating all the food I work hard for and running up my power bill. I can’t kick her out, she is all I have left in this world, and despite her bumming, I still love her. Mom did leave us a house, so I have that covered. The three jobs that I work covers all the other expenses.
I grab a towel from the kitchen and turn back around, jumping when I almost run into Tessa. “What are you doing?” She asks. I only gawk at her, stunned that she doesn’t seem to be fazed that she is bleeding.
“I thought you said you accidently sliced open your hand.”
“Then why are you not bleeding at all?” I ask as I grab her hand. There is no blood, no cut.
“Because I lied.” She laughed. “You are always so quick to believe everything I say.”
“Because you always get hurt.” I yell at her. I ring the towel in my hands, growing angrier with every passing moment. “What purpose do you have to make me worry like that?” I try to calm myself.
“You don’t have to worry about me much anymore.” She says with a smirk.
“Yeah?” I ask, putting my free hand on my hip and throwing the towel on the kitchen table. “What, did you suddenly become immune to injury?”
“No.” She snickers. “I’m just better now.”
“Well if you are better, why don’t you go get a job?”
“I have a job.” She says as her smile fades. “That is what I have to tell you. It’s why I lied. I wanted you to see that things could be worse.”
“What do you mean?” She motions to the kitchen table.
“You might want to sit down.”
“Oh, god, what have you done?”
“You always think the worst of me.” She smiles a sad smile. “I haven’t done anything. I have found a job, but it’s not around here. I will be moving away.”
“Where to?” I ask her. Panic rises in my throat, my heart beats faster and I can feel myself starting to hyperventilate. Maybe the truth is I need her here. She doesn’t need me, she never did. It was always me, I needed her. “Where are you moving to?”
“Earth.” She says. The tears run down my face and I stand from the kitchen table. “I will be going on a mission to Earth. I am to collect data on the humans, find out what they are really like. I will return to Pluto and tell the truth. This isn’t some government run job. They can’t lie to us anymore.”
“How long will you be gone? When do you leave? Are you sure you want to do this? What about your life here?” I spit out everything that is on my mind, unable to hold back my questions.
“Riley, you have to calm down.” Tessa says, she guides be back to the kitchen table, picking up the chair I had knocked over. She forces me to sit then grabs a bottle of water from the ice box, sitting it in front of me. She then sits at the table across from me, taking one of my hands in hers. “You know how much I hate the government and the lies they feed us. I have joined the resistance. I will prove to everyone that Earth is not the bad place that the Officials have told us it was.”
“What if they are exactly what we have been told they are? What if they really are cannibals that eat their own children, kill their own mothers, and destroy the place they call home? What if they find out that you are from Pluto and decide to chop you up? How will I ever know what happened to you?” I cry, hard, the tears blurring my vision. I have a headache now and I feel bile rising from my stomach.
“What if they are just like us? Just trying to make it day to day, living as happily as they can?” She speaks quietly to me. “You can’t talk me out of this. The only thing I have here is you, and I know you can’t keep carrying me like you have. You have put your dreams on hold for me. Now it is my time to move on and let you live your life. I am chasing my dreams so that you can chase yours.”
“When do you leave?” I ask.
“First thing in the morning.”
“I will go with you.” I say, making up my mind. “You are the only thing in my life. You are all I have left. My dream since the day mother died was to take care of you. I am going with you.”
“I was hoping you would say that.” Tessa says, smiling again. “I really didn’t want to go with out you.”