Friday, August 1, 2008

THIRTY-SIX

BRIIIIIING. BRIIIIIIIING.

My father grumbled—he'd always hated being interrupted during dinner—and reached for the telephone hanging on the kitchen wall.

"Alain Lemieux speaking," he answered gruffly. His expression brightened slightly when the person on the other line spoke. "Ah, salut, Mario! How's everything going?" He listened to Uncle Mario's reply, then laughed. "Yes, yes, I know how that is. Wait until they reach high school. It doesn't get any easier." I could faintly hear Uncle Mario on the other line, but I couldn't understand what he was saying. My father's expression changed from pleased to confused and his eyes flickered to me several times. "Mario, what are you talking about? She's sitting right beside me….ah, I see. Well, tell them not to worry. She's been here since yesterday morning…right, well, thanks for calling. We'll sort this all out. See you, Mario."

My father replaced the phone in its cradle and glared at me. "That was Mario." I nodded and swallowed a mouthful of ratatouille. "He said that your friends have been looking for you for the past two days, because none of them had any idea you were here." I stared at my food, suddenly feeling very foolish. I hadn't told anyone I was leaving for Montreal, and I had left my cell phone in my apartment in Pittsburgh. I hadn't stopped to think about Sylvie and Marc-André, or Colby and Lauren, or maybe even Sidney…they would be worried about me, certainly. I had essentially disappeared after Ryan's party. "Mario called to tell me that you had disappeared," my father said, his voice rising. "I have never heard my brother so upset. What were you thinking?"

"I wasn't," I admitted. I wasn't thinking of anyone but myself when I left Pittsburgh. "I'm going to call him back," I said as I took the portable phone from its dock and moved into the living room.

The phone rang three times before Uncle Mario picked up. "Uncle Mario, it's Karine."

"Karine," he replied, his voice a mixture of relief and annoyance. "Next time you decide to leave the country for two days, you might want to let one of us know." He was trying to joke with me, but I could hear the serious edge to his voice.

"I'm so sorry. I didn't stop to think that maybe someone would be looking for me."

Uncle Mario sighed. "Sylvie is about to have a stroke. Here, she wants to talk to you."

"KARINE, WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU THINKING?" Sylvie screeched into the phone. I winced, hurt by both her shrill voice and her anger.

"I'm sorry, Syl. It was a spur-of-the-moment decision…I just needed to get out of Pittsburgh."

"Karine Elise Lemieux, that is the worst excuse I have ever heard. Do you know what we were all thinking? You just vanished after you left Ryan's. We thought you were dead in a ditch somewhere! Especially after what happened…" she trailed off.

"Is he there?" I asked quietly.

"No," she replied. "He and Colby had to leave for the Igloo. Faceoff is in half an hour. But we basically had to push him out the door. He was the most worried about you. He thought that he upset you at Ryan's, and maybe caused something…"

"Wait," I interrupted. "What did you all think happened?"

"Karine, we didn't know what to think. You weren't answering your phone, we checked your apartment and you weren't there, of course you weren't at your office…we couldn't find you anywhere. We thought something happened…something bad."

"Oh God," I breathed. "Syl, I am so, so sorry. I had no idea." My face was burning with shame.

"Just don't do it again, okay?" she said with a tense laugh.

"I'm taking the next flight home. Tell everyone I am so sorry. And really embarrassed. I'll figure out a way to make this up to everyone."

"Don't worry about it. We're just glad you're safe. But…why did you go to Montreal in the first place? We didn't think you'd be there…that's why we just called your parents. We didn't want to worry them."

I sighed. "This is so selfish and immature, but after seeing Sidney at Malone's I just couldn't handle it anymore. I was a wreck, so I decided to run. I thought that leaving the country would put enough distance between me and my problems, but it didn't really work out. It obviously just made things worse."

"I understand where you're coming from, though. Things have been kind of a mess for you lately, haven't they?"

I chuckled at Sylvie's understatement. "Kind of." I exhaled slowly and bit my bottom lip. "Does…does he know I'm okay?" I asked hesitantly.

Sylvie didn't need to ask who I was talking about. "Yeah. Marc called him as soon as Mario talked to your dad. He's probably pissed, but I bet he's more relieved than anything."

I nodded, even though I knew Sylvie couldn't see me. None of this should matter, but somehow it meant a lot to me that Sidney knew I was okay.

10 comments:

Kaity said...

yess ! another post (:
i loved it
update soon please

stovgirl said...

Love it, keep on updating ASAP...

LC said...

I love this story, it's amazing!! Not to sound creepy, but how old are you because you are such an excellent and mature writer

Summer said...

No worries, I don't think you're creepy haha. I'm turning 18 at the end of the month. I just finished high school so I'll be heading to collge in a couple weeks. Thanks for the compliments =)

giveupon-me said...

where are you going to college?
cause i leave in september for ohio university.
and i absolutely love this story.
i hope there's an update when i get back from work tonight.
-ashley

Kimmy said...

More soon!!!
I love this story!!

Summer said...

I'll be going to Pitt. I actually looked into OU but I didn't want to leave the city. I love it here.

Aeryn said...

WOOOOO! Loved it, Can't wait for more! :D

giveupon-me said...

that's exciting!
yeah i'm from cleveland so the 3 and a half hour car ride isn't too bad.
what are you studying?

Summer said...

I'm majoring in English, with a concentration in nonfiction writing and journalism.