........................ I picked up Noah and we went to the movies he’d got tickets for a new comedy that was really lame but he laughed like an idiot through almost the whole thinghe’d put his arm round me and attempted to kiss me twice and turned away at the last minute I took him home. He turned to face me in the car.
“So when do you think we can go out again” he asked I hesitated.
“I don’t know the next few weeks are a bit unpredictable” I said not wanting to use my dad as an excuse.
“I’m sure your Dad wouldn’t mind you having a night out” he shrugged.
‘You know what it’s like when they’ve been away for so long” I said trying to dodge round setting up a second date “How about I get back to you on it” he looked like he was going to burst into tears.
“Why don’t you just say you don’t want to go out on a date with me” he said an edge of anger in his voice.
‘Look Noah I have so much crap goingon at the moment with Dad coming home and family flying in and then having to deal with school and the shit happening there it’s not a good time” he nodded “I’m sorry” he looked at me before he lunged forward and kissed me slamming his teeth against mine and forcing his tongue into my mouth, I was shocked for a second and didn’t react before I came to my senses as I felt his hand touching my boob I pulled back. “WTF Noah” he looked at me before he got out of the car and slammed the door stalking off into his house I put my foot down and drove home, what happened to my nice normal life. I walked into the house Mom was sitting on the couch she looked at me.
“Tess what’s wrong” She asked getting up “The boys said you and Ben had a fight”.
“How do they know” I said she shook her head “Mom why is it when one thing happens everything else seems to go wrong”.
“Unfortunately honey that’s life” She said hugging me “You have to take a deep breath and push through it, things always get better or it just doesn’t seem so bad after a few days”
“Do you think there are any good guys out there for me” I sighed.
“You’ll find one don’t you worry and don’t look for it the right guy will come along at some point” She grinned “Don’t forget like your Dad keeps telling you I when I met him I told him so many times I was never going to date a Marine and I had said that same line as long as I could remember and 4 weeks after I first set eyes he had asked me to marry him” I nodded.
“He swept you off your feet” I smiled.
“You could say that but I wasn’t looking at meeting anyone I’d had a fight with my boyfriend at the time and wanted to get away so Toby took me to his friends and the rest is history” she walked with me to the bottom of the stairs “go get a good night’s sleep and after tomorrow your Dad will be here” I nodded and kissed her “Love you Tess”.
“Love you too Mom” I said walking up to bed I didn’t even bother to get changed I was just so tired…………………………………..
………………………. My phone was ringing like crazy I grabbed it
Me * what.
Skye * where are you we had practice this morning at 7.
ME * I forgot.
Skye * your date that good.
Me * I’ll tell you about it when I get there tell coach I’ll be 15 minutes.
I closed my phone and dragged myself out of bed having a quick wash I changed into my soccer things and grabbed a skirt and tank for afterI grabbedmy I-pod from the side and went to get my watch from its usual place on the nightstand where I thought I’d put it the night before but it wasn’t there I shook my head I couldn’t even think straight at the moment so I could have put it anywhere I raced down stairs Mom was making breakfast for the boys Aunt Dannie was there with my 3 cousins.
“Honey where are you going ?” Aunt Dannie shouted as I grabbed my keys.
“I forgot I had a practice this morning” I called out “I’ll see you later”. I made it to practice 20 minutes late.
“Oh Tess nice to show up”
“I’m sorry coach” I said dropping my bag.
“Go take 5 laps” I started to run by the end of practice I was ready to go home let alone do a full day at school I showered and changed Skye linked my arm as we walked t the lockers.
“I hear you and Ben got into a fight in the middle of the parking lot” she said as we got to our lockers Ben was standing across the hall with Lilly.
“Yeah I guess I know now who my friends really are” I said not even looking at Ben “The others just aren’t worth shit” I got my things and walked away. Skye chased after me.
“So what happened on the hot date with Noah” I opened the door to our homeroom and we went in and sat down Noah didn’t even look round.
“He’s not my type I tried to let him down gently and he sort of freaked a little” I whispered.
“What do you mean freaked a little”?
“He grabbed me and kissed me and tried to cop a feel” I said through clenched teeth Skye was biting her lip trying not to laugh I smacked her on the head with my rule.
‘I’m sorry” she laughed as Justin walked in and sat down next to us I sighed and slide down in my seat.
‘I just want it to be this time tomorrow” .
The rest of the day was really no better than I expected I was getting my things from my locker ready to go home Noah leaned on the side of the locker. “Noah I’m really not in the best mood right now which is really screwed up because of how happy I should be right now”.
“I just wanted to say sorry for last night I shouldn’t have expected a girl like you to have liked me” I sighed and closed the door and leaned my head against it.
“Look like I said last night it’s a turning into a bad week all I need is to get home and be told Dad’s tour has been extended so can we talk next week please”.
“Sure” I gave him a half smile before I walked off I opened the door and stepped out in to hot sun.
“Now I don’t like to see a girl with a sad face especially when she’s so pretty” my heart jumped I Looked round to see both of my Grandpas’s standing with Ollie and Dylan. I looked from one to the other and promptly burst into tears as Skye came across to me.
“Gunny bear what’s wrong “Grandpa Jack wrapped his arms round me and hugged me I think he’d only ever called me Tess once and that was when he caught me hitting Ollie with his golf clubs.
“She’s had a rough couple of days” Skye said smiling at my Grandpa.
“Boy trouble” Ollie piped up Grandpa Will just gave him a look Ollie just shrugged.
“You need your old Grand pas to sort them out for you” G.Will asked I Looked up and shook my head.
“It’s not that sort of boy trouble Grandpa” I sniffed as Skye handed me a Kleenex. “I got into a fight with a friend that’s all and I keep putting stuff down and they aren’t there when I come back, and I had a really boring date last night and I was late for soccer this morning”.
“Come on we’re all going out for dinner Skye you’re more than welcome to join us” G.Will smiled at her.
“Thank you but I have plans” Skye nodded I just came to give this to Tess” she handed me a book she’d borrowed from me. “I won’t call you this weekend with your Dad coming home I know how crazy it gets” I nodded “so I’ll see you on Monday”.
“Okay” I watched as she walked to her car.
“Do you need to go home and get changed” G.Jack asked.
“No I’m good” I nodded pulling my keys from my pocket.
“I’ll call Mom and tell her to meet us at the restaurant” Nick grinned “and I’m riding with Grandpa Will”, he jumped in to the Corvette that Grandpa had.
“It looks like I’m coming with you and Ollie then Gunny bear” I smiled and nodded, I opened to door to the car and we got in I watched as Ben and Lilly walked out across the parking lot she gave me a little sarcastic wave. I flicked her the finger.
“Oh just like your Mom” Grandpa laughed “I take it you don’t like that girl.
“No she has my friend so tightly wrapped round her finger that when she told him he had to give up his friends that were girls or she’d dump him” I sighed pulling out of the parking lot.
“Love does funny things to a guy” He sighed. “Anyway forget about them and just think in less than 24 hours…” Ollie cut him off.
“Yeah Dad’s back” I had to smiled…………………..
………………. I got out of bed and walked down to the kitchen the house was full of people and a happy buzz was filling the room there was nothing quite like the feeling when Dad and the others were headed home.
“Good morning Tess” grandma smiled hugging me.
“Hi Nana” I sighed as Mom Handed me a glass of O.J. “What time do we have to leave”.
“They’re back at 11 so” Mom smiled she looked at the clock “you have just over an hour”.
“Sit and have some breakfast Honey” Sami said handing me a plate of pancakes.
“Thanks” I sat next to Max the baby of t he family which he hated to be called he was biting his nails every time Toby was deployed he had the hardest time with it. “You okay” I smiled at him, he nodded.
“Tess” he asked.
“Do you think Dad will know who I am” he said his big dark brown eyes looking worried.
“Of course he will” I smiled turning round in my seat “Why wouldn’t he”.
“Dylan and Cole said that Dad can only remember the oldest two and he doesn’t have time to think about me” I saw tears welling behind his eyes.
“They said that” he nodded “You want me to sort them out” he nodded again I put my arms round him and hugged him“Okay” I got up all the other boys were playing football in the yard, both Grandpas were sitting on the deck watching and laughing at them. I walked down the steps and jumped and caught the ball in mid air.
“Tess I’m op…” Nick shouted his voice trailing off when he saw the expression on my face “I didn’t do it whatever it is your mad with” I threw him the ball as I reached where Dylan and Cole were standing.
‘Hey Tess” Cole smiled I grabbed him by the ear catching Dylan by his as well be for he could dodge out of the way.
“Ow Tess that hurts” Dylan whined trying to squirm out of my grip.
“Yeah Tess let goooooooo that really hurts” Cole yelped as I twisted his ear.
“Tess let go of them” Grandpa Will yelled getting up.
“No” I shouted marching them both up the steps of the deck and into the house.
“Er. What’s going on” Aunt Dannie asked looking from me to her oldest 2 boys.
“I think you both need to apologize to you little brother” I snapped “He’s 5 and he looks up to you idiots for some really strange reason”.
“Tess” Mom said her voice stern.
“These jerks told Max that Uncle Toby won’t remember him because he doesn’t have enough time to think about all three of them just the oldest two” I said twisting their ears again in my fingers.
“Boys did you” Aunt Dannie said getting up from the table “And Tess please honey let go of them” I let go and leaned against the table Max was sitting on Grandma Ana’s lap sobbing Dylan and Cole looked at each other then at Aunt Dannie.
“Yes Ma’am” they both sighed “We were only messing around” Cole pouted.
“That’s not the sort of messing around we do is it” Dannie said putting her hands on her hips.
“No Ma’am” they both said again.
“Expect a good chat with your Dad later we’ll see what he thinks about this” the color drained from their faces “go say sorry to Max. They both shuffled over to Max.
“Sorry little dude” Dylan sighed.
“Yeah sorry Max, Dad thinks about all of us all the time we shouldn’t have said anything nasty like that” Cole said putting his hand on his little brothers shoulder. Mom nudged me and winked. “You want to come out and play football” Max hopped of Grandma’s lap and headed out side with his brothers.
“Thanks for playing body guard” Aunt Dannie laughed looking at me.
“Hey I have half the U.S. Marine corps looking out for me, the least I can do is stop Max being picked on by his brothers” I smirked.
“You should be the first girl in the family that becomes a Marine” Grandpa Will laughed. Mom glared at him which made me smiled.
“Will having the 2 boys enlisting as soon as they can is enough” she said, Grandpa just held up his hands.
“I’m going to get ready” I smirked I walked up to my bed room and into the bathroom I did my hair and makeup I walked out into my room and pulled on my skirt and opened my closet to get out a shirt I pulled on a pink Marine corps t-shirt as my door opened and Nick walked in “Do you know how to knock” I asked looking at him.
“Nope” He smirked “Mom wants to know if you’re ready to go because she’s starting to wear a groove in the floor from pacing” I nodded I pushed my phone in my pocket and walked down the stairs……………………….
…………… We got to the parade ground, Grandpa Jack had his arms round Mom talking to her and making her smile trying to keep her mind off the wait both of my Grandma’s were talking constantly nervous chatter that was about absolutely nothing Grandpa Will and Aunt Dannie were talking to Adam who had his arm round Sami’s shoulder with Max sitting on his shoulders watching for the buses Dylan and Ollie were sat on the bleachers not talking just waiting Ollie nervously chewing on his bottom lip. Cole and Nick were standing next to me trying to pass the time by talking about the next baseball game. My phone buzzed in my pocket. I pulled it out.
1 new message **** Ben ****
I didn’t even go any further with reading it I hit delete and put it back into my pocket and took a deep breath.
“You okay” Cole asked giving me a nudge.
“Yeah I just hate the waiting” I smiled Nick put his arm round my shoulders.
“So when does Dad get introduced to Skater boy” he laughed.
“His name is Noah and I’m not going to introduce Dad to him” I said. “There’s nothing going on with us”.
“So your date wasn’t good” Nick asked.
‘No, and I don’t think I’m going to tell you anymore of the details” I said poking him in the ribs.
“Did he try it on with you because I’ll tell Dad”? Nick said defensively.
“No he didn’t and there’s nothing to tell Dad, got it he’s just not my type so leave it” I snapped a little.
“Okay I just….” He stopped mid sentence as max shouted “BUS” at the top of his little lungs I felt Nicks arm tighten round my shoulders as the fleet of white busses pulled up on the far side of the parade ground, I jumped as Ollie pushed between me and Dylan on the other side my fingers gripped Ollie’s arm as we watched the Marines get down from the buses my stomach in knots I saw Grandpa whisper to mom at the same time as Adam said something to Sami and Dannie pointing out something Grandpa turned round looking for us he waved us over, Ollie linked his fingers with mine as we walked Nick still with his arm round me shoulder, this and the dayDad leaves is the time I’m closest with my brothers as long as I can remember we’ve always stood together when were waiting either with arms round each other or holding each other’s hand for support.
“Take a look front row 8th guy from the right” Grandpa smiled I looked at Mom she had tears streaming down her face I looked back to the lines of Marines, There was Dad standing with Eric and Uncle Toby the lump in my throat felt like it was going to choke me as the Marines were dismissed to go find their families Nick moved his arm and grabbed my hand like Ollie they both took off running pulling me with them before I managed to match their strides Mom always let us get to Dad first. Dad was looking and then spotted the three of us he stood his ground bracing himself for the sudden impact of us we all landed in his arms the tears flowing from all of us.
“God I’ve missed you guys” Dad said kissing all three of us on the head as we all bear hugged him “Okay let me breath” he laughed as we stepped back. “What happened to my little kids” he sighed “Ollie you and Nick look good”.
“We’ve worked out everyday like you do” Ollie gabbled “And we’ve both made the J.V. baseball team”.
“Yeah Dad you’ve got to come see the game on Monday” Nick noddedbeaming from ear to ear “and last week you should have seen the goal Tess scored it was awesome”. Dad took a deep breath and looked at me moving his arms from round the boy’s shoulders he held out his arms to me and pulled me against his broad chest.
“You doing okay princess” he said kissing my fore head his eyes searching my face as I looked up at him and nodded “you’re as beautiful as your Mom baby girl” he sighed.
“I missed you Dad” I sniffed burying my head in his shirt. “We all missed you”.
“I’m home now for a while I hope and I’ll be at all your games and practices and next weekend we’re all headed for the beach for a huge party we sorted it out while we were traveling back”.
“Awesome” Ollie and Nick shouted high fiving each other I let go of Dad as Mom walked towards us Dad got a twinkle in his eye as he watched her.
“Hey Marine” she smiled the tears still on her cheeks.
“Hey baby” she put her arms round his neck the both stood looking at each other “I love you “he sighed resting is head against hers before kissing her the boys both groaned and rolled their eyes but I love the fact My Mom and Dad have been together for so long and still act like newlyweds when they’re with each other.
“Okay Will you guys get a room” a voice called out from behind me as two hands were placed on my shoulders. “Hey Tess” Uncle Toby hugged me. “Jeez you’re all grown up now I feel old”.
“Dude you are old” Eric laughed kissing my cheek “Tess you look beautiful honey” he smirked. “Logan put your wife down you could be arrested for doing things like that”. Dad moved back from Mom who was laughing Uncle Toby walked over to her and hugged her kissing her cheek.
“Hey Sis” Aunt Dannie and Dad hugged each other.
We all headed for the parking lot I looked round as the huge group of us surrounding the 3 guys in uniform and smiled as Dad took my hand and he put his arm round Mom hopefully things will go back to being normal now……………………………………………