“Oh, hey Danny.” I smiled nervously pulling my tank top down. He stared at me in disbelief. “What do you need help with?”
“You have tattoos?” He blinked at me as I bit my lip looking down. “How many?” He asked as I sighed. He turned my desk chair around and sat down looking at me.
“Do stairs count as one all together or one for each?” He raised his eye brow folding his arms. “Cause then….7.” His face was one of shock.
“How did you get six tattoos at 17? You can’t even get them legally yet.” I shrugged.
“Every one of my mother’s husbands easily signed my release form. They never really cared and it made me shut up for a week.” He shook his head leaning his arms on the back of my chair.” I knotted my fingers together. “They gave me comfort.” Danny watched me as I squirmed uncomfortably.
“You never had it easy did you?” I shook my head.
“Are you mad at me?” I asked quietly. He sucked in a lung full of air before letting it out.
“I have nothing to be mad at.” He shrugged. “I was just surprised. Help I could say I hated them but then I’d be a hypocrite.” He smiled at me. “Does your mother know about them?” I shook my head.
“I thought when I got my first she would but she never cared to notice.” I shrugged. “I’m guessing no, but hell my mom doesn’t care.” He cocked his head to the side.
“Alright.” He clapped his hands making me jump. “Whatcha got?” I putted my shirt up to show him the two antique colts on my hips.
“I got these on my 16th birthday.” I turned around to show him the sets of 7 stars that went up my back on each left and right of my hips. “I got these a couple months later.” He gave me an impressed look.
“Nice.” I smiled pulling my shirt up to my bra line.
“My favorite.” It is a baby Simba from The Lion King with the phase ‘Remember who you are’ written under it on my ribs. “And this one.” I turned to show him my opposite side of my ribs. On it is a jellyfish with ‘just keep swimming’ tangled in its stinger. “And lastly.” I turned around to show him the dream catcher on my back by my neck. “The jellyfish is the next one.” I picked up lotion and rubbed it on the still tender skin.
“How new?” He asked narrowing his eyes.
“Uh, like two weeks before the wedding?” He shook his head at me. “I just thought it was right.” I sighed moving to kick one of my boxes next to my bed.
“Alright, but you have to promise me something.” I nodded looking at him. “You won’t get another one without tell me, even if you’re over 18?” I nodded putting my hand out to shake his.
“Deal.” He patted the back of my chair handing up.
“Hey, you never know, I might just get some with you.” He winked at me. “I got to go give stinker a bath. The pizza’s in the fridge if you get hungry. The cable guy set up the cable so your TV is working.” He pointed to the TV sitting on my dresser. “Call if you need anything.” He smiled walking out closing the door behind him. I rubbed my face running a hand through my hair before picking up a book to unpack it. My phone started to ring next to me. “Hey.” I said answering the phone.
“Why weren’t you answering me?” Z’s voice came in through my phone. I could feel his glare from where he was all the way in Tennessee.
“Z, I’ve been busy. I just moved into the middle of the Pacific Ocean. I’m settling in.” I closed my eyes as I listen to him giving me a frustrated grunt.
“You staid you’d call.” He growled at me.
“I’m talking to you aren’t I?” My mouth shut quickly as I heard the sound of his jaw snapping closed.
“Don’t piss me off, Anastasia.” I sighed lying back on my bed. I knew better than to piss him off.
“I’m sorry.” I whimpered standing up to turn on the TV.
“You better be. I expect better from you. I wanted to make sure you were alright.” I put my phone between my ear and my shoulder as I unpacked a box putting my books on my book shelve.
“I know. I’ve just been busy, busy and stressed.” I ran a hand through my hair.
“You know I can get you anything you want Baby. Anywhere. Anytime.” His voice was soft but I knew the meaning behind his words. I sat back down on my bed.
“I know.” He sighed.
“I’ll come see you soon. You know you miss me. I’m kind of a big deal.” I closed my eyes.
“I have to finish packing.” I could hear him grunt again.
“You’re just going to go like that.” I wanted to yell at him to leave me alone, I just want to be alone, but I knew it would only hurt me in the process.
“I’ll call you tomorrow.” I murmur putting my hand over my eyes. I heard him sigh; he knew I wasn’t in the mood to talk.
“I’ll text you the number to the guy I have near you. You can get anything you want from him. You know I give you everything you need.” There was a possessive tone in his voice. “Alright?”
“Alright.” I sighed.
“Good Night, Ana.”
“Good-bye, Zander.” I hung up my phone putting it on my nightstand. I quickly made my bed and curled up under the covers after pulling off my shorts and bra. I covered my face in my pillow as I cried away the pain of everything. I turned to look at the TV wiping my eyes as my favorite show came on. I rubbed my eyes wiping them with my blankets as my door opened. “Hi Mother.” I blinked at her my stone face back in place.
“I want silence from this room. I don’t want to hear a thing. Do you understand me?” I nodded at her. “Good. You wouldn’t like your punishment if you didn’t stay silent. But you remember don’t you?” She smirked at me. I stayed silent under my quilt my grandmother made me when I was younger. I would call her look fiendish but that is too soft of a word. She realized I wasn’t going to answer and huffed leaving the room. I sighed pulling my blanket over my head trying to make it all go away…..
“Get up!” My mom said pulling on my blanket making me roll with it causing me smack my head into my nightstand. I pulled back groaning holding onto the side of my head in pain. “You should have got up!” She yelled as I rolled onto my pillows to cover my face. “Now up!” She walked out as I tried to calm my racing heartbeat from being woken up like that and the impact on my head. I pulled my head up from my pillow to see Danny sitting on my head.
“Here.” He whispered handing me an icepack to put on my head.
“Thanks.” I said sighing picking up my glass of water I got last night and taking a sip. “Why was I awaken?” I asked him putting the glass down.
“We were thinking of going to the beach. I offered to wake you up.” He frowned as I took the ice of the bump I now have.
“I’m used to it.” I sighed handing it back to him standing up. “I’ll be ready in 5 minutes.” I said pulling out a bikini and a sun dress.
“Alright.” He gave me a sad look before leaving the room closing the door. I changed in my bikini pulling on the sundress before French braiding my long hair. I pulled on my sunglasses putting them on top of my head grabbing the book I was reading and shoving it into a bag with my wallet and my sunscreen. I walked out to see Matty jumping up and down in the family room.
“We’re going to the beach! We’re going to the beach!” I smiled at him as I heard the tell-tale sound of my mother making coffee.
“I got towels and sunblock. We ready to go?” Danny asked holding a bag smiling.
“Yeah, let’s go.” My mother said looking me over as she sipped her coffee out of her travel mug.
“Yay the beach!” Matty called running out of the house to the car. I helped him into his car seat while Danny put our stuff in the back, including my mother’s chair and umbrella.
“Ana, you remember Taylor, from yesterday, right?” I nodded as we started off. “You’ll get to meet his daughter. You two are the same age. Maybe you’ll hit it off and be friends.” He smiled into the mirror at me. My mom looked over at her.
“Anastasia doesn’t have friends.” She said curtly. I pulled down my sunglasses to cover my eyes as I stared out the window fighting the tears.
“I’m Annie’s friend.” Matty said staring at my mother. She turned to glare at him her eyes flaring up. I put my hand on his little knee in a gesture to tell him to stop it. He looked at me sadly crossing his arms like his father. “But she’s being mean.” He whispered loudly. Her glare turned hard and her face was one of thunder. I’m not letting him get hurt for his childhood innocence. I looked at Danny in the mirror in fear. I knew he couldn’t see my eyes but he read my face.
“You little-” Danny cut her off quickly.
“I was thinking tonight we could go to this lovely Italian restaurant just off base. You know a newlywed date.” He smiled at her. I could tell it was forced, even from here it didn’t reach his eyes. But my mother couldn’t tell. She didn’t care.
“Oh that sounds lovely. I could go for a bottle of wine being around all this stress.” She huffed picking up her cellphone to text someone. I sent a quick text message as we pulled up to the beach. I didn’t think I was going to have to take Z up on his offer on my first full day in Hawaii. This is going to be a long year…