Jordyn’s room was huge. Not just big, it was huge. Then again, she thought as she dropped down on the familiar mattress of her own bed, everything in this house was huge. She looked around, taking in the sight. Like downstairs, her new walls were also white. That was going to have to go. Lack of creativity was a little depressing. Jordyn wasn’t a “loud” color person, but back home, her walls were a subtle, purple, her carpet soft white. Here, there was no carpet, she realized, looking down at her Toms as they rested on hardwood floor.
There were two big—no, huge—bay windows, side by side, each with a window bench, looking over the tree-covered backyard and the cliff a few feet further away. She got up and walked over, sitting at one of the windows. Well, she liked the view, anyway. It wasn’t the beach, but it was very picturesque. She imagined the scene belonged in one of thoselandscaping magazines with atitle “Home in the Woods,” or something like that.
So, she took a picture, titled it that, and sent the picture to Shay in a text.
Jordyn chewed on her bottom lip, turning her back to the portrait scene her backyard made, and studied her new room a little more. Besides the one leading into the hallway, there were three other doors on her left wall. Two side by side and fairly narrowed. Upon exploration, she learned that those opened to a double-door, spacious closet. The other door—get this—a bathroom!
"No way," Jordyn said with a smile as she gazed into the bathroom. It was fairly small,but she didn't care. She had her own, personal space, anddidn't have to sharewith Logan anymore. No more SpongeBob boxers laying around, no more finding her shampoo upside down on the floor, leaking. She had her own personal bathroom and that was a big step.
She heard her bedroom door creak open, and turned to find her mother there, smiling, holding a cardboard box in her arms. “So, what do you think?”
Jordyn’s first instinct was to grin, show her excitement by jumping up and down like a ten-year-old and scream “I love it!” But she knew better. She was still angry about the move to begin with, so she placed a nonchalant look on her face and nodded, staying very noncommittal. “It’s alright.”
“How about this view?” Zara asked, putting the box down and looking at the two bay windows. “I knew you’d love this room. We asked you to leave your ocean-view room, so we did the best and got you a lake-view. I know it’s not the same, but you have to admit. This is beautiful.”
“Yeah, I guess it is,” Jordyn said, finally smiling.
“Good,” Zara replied. “I guess that’s a step, huh.”
Jordyn shrugged. “Yeah. I guess so.” Just then her cell phone vibrated on her bed, and both she and Zara glanced at it. Shay was texting back. Jordyn decided she would get it later.
“We have a whole week until school starts,” Zara continued with a smile. “So we’re gonna decorate your room exactly how you want it.”
Jordyn thought about it. Putting her own into the room made it feel permanent. Up until now, somehow she’d made this all feel temporary, as if in a month or so she’d be in California again. But that was silly. Cedarwood, this house.This was her home now, so she might as well get used to it.
“Sounds good,” she said, grabbing her cell phone. “I guess I’ll just go ahead and start unpacking. Get it over with.”
“Ok, great, I’ll leave you alone. We’re having dinner at 8:00, OK?”
When Zara was gone, Jordyn checked the message Shay had sent.
Nice view. Your new backyard?
Yeah. I traded an ocean-view for a lake -_- Can’t say I’m excited. But it’s pretty, right?
Totally. But I miss you already L
Same here. L
You come back ASAP. I got to go. Skype later?
Definitely! See you!
Jordyn sighed, looking at her phone, then she tossed it on her bed and got to work unpacked and rearranging everything to exactly where she wanted it.
Even after an hour of unpacking, she couldn’t get rid of the musty, unlived-in smell of the previously very empty house. It smelled old, almost, and it was the main thing keeping it from feeling like hers. She still hadn’t unpacked her cosmetics bag, yet, so she went into that and pulled out a bottle of her favorite body spray. Jordyn didn’t do perfume, but she loved a clean, fresh body spray.
And now, her new room was about to, too. Spinning in several small circles around the room, she sprayed probably a fourth of the bottle, freshening up the place at least until she could get into town and buy some Febreeze.
She carried the cosmetics bag into her new bathroom, and noticed how bare it was. She made a note of all the things she would have to get to decorate a bathroom, since she’d never had her own before. She couldn’t help but feel a little excited at the thought. She’d always said when she moved out the bathroom was the one thing she wanted to do the most. She looked around, picturing polka dots. Yes. Something with polka dots. Jordyn loved polka dots.
She flipped the light on, and when she saw what was waiting for her on the bathroom sink, and screamed. Like, really, screamed. She couldn’t help it.
Jordyn was backing out of the room when she backed right into Ty, who was coming to her rescue. She lifted one shaky finger, and pointed at it. “Kill it!”
Ty looked to see what it was, and let out a long sigh and groan. An annoyed sigh and groan.
“Jordyn,” he said. “You screamed over this?”
“This?! Tyler it’s a spider! A giant spider!”
“It’s not giant, it’s average,” Ty said.
“I don’t care if it’s microscopic. It’s a spider! Kill it!”
Just then, their mother appeared. “What happened in here?”
Ty slammed his flip flop onto the bathroom counter, smashing the spider. “This happened?”
Zara put a hand on her chest and let out a sigh of relief. “Jordyn, I thought you had broken a bone or something.”
“Me, too,” Ty chuckled.
Jordyn turned to face her mother and brother. “Next spider I see I’m catching a plane back to California. I’ll live with Shay. She’ll understand.”
Ty chuckled. “Well, get that plane ticket ready. We live in the country now. You’re gonna see a lot more than spiders.”
And with that, he was gone.
“Great, now I’m gonna wonder what kind of creatures I’ll see coming out of my closet,” Jordyn declared.
Zara grabbed a paper towel and wiped the dead spider off the counter, making Jordyn cringe. “You all done with unpacking, dear? We’re eating in a few minutes.”
“I’m done. And please tell me there’s a Bed, Bath and Beyond around here somewhere.”
Zara looked at her daughter’s bare bathroom. “There’s a Wal-Mart in town, and there’s a Lowe’s Home Improvement and a Target in Woodbury. That’ll work for decorating your bathroom and bedroom. Have you thought about what color you want your walls?”
No, she hadn’t. “We’re painting the walls?”
“We’re painting all the walls. In the whole house.”
This was good news. It would take some work, though. It wasn’t like the house was in bad shape. It wasn’t. Besides that not-lived-in must Jordyn was still faintly aware of, it was really nice and have been kept up really well by the caretaker. But the plain white walls reminded Jordyn a little bit of an institution and she was ready for something that would make this house their own.
“Think about what you want to do,” Zara said. “We’re going shopping Monday. Finish this up and come on down for dinner.”
The Hamiltons’ furniture was pretty much in place already, thanks to the movers, and most everything was already put in its place, thanks to Jack being here all week, but Zara had decorating of her own to do, and the house still had a bunch of little stuff laying around, still needing to be cleaned up, even at 8:00. So it made sense that Zara wasn’t cooking dinner. Instead, they’d ordered pizza.
Thank God this place has a Pizza Hut, Jordyn thought, digging into the first slice.
After dinner, Jordyn took a quick shower, then retired to her room. She skyped with Shay for a bit, then decided to hook up her flat screen and DVD player. Adjusting to the East Coast time wouldn’t be easy. Here, it was nearing 10:00, but she was still on California time, so she would need to find herself something to do to keep her busy until she fell asleep.
By midnight, she’d slipped into bed, determined to try and make herself sleep.
Under the familiarity of her own sheets on her own mattress, she almost felt at home. And when she closed her eyes, she pretended she was at home. She could almost hear the sounds of the waves crashing on the shore.
But all she could hear were crickets. And frogs. Or, at least that was what her dad had said those annoying sounds were when he suggested she open her window and let some fresh air in. She’d had no objections, since she was still eager to get the smell of must out. But she couldn’t shake the feeling of a wild animal, like a rabid raccoon or a deer jumping through her window and killing her in the middle of the night.
Luckily she was tired, though, and before she knew it she’d drifted off to sleep for the first time in her new house, with thoughts of the beach, Shay, and even Victoria Joy on her mind. Her new life had officially started.