Chapter 5: Tantrum

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic

Reads: 118

After dinner time he had asked Charlie if she wanted to go to the store with him to get some stuff like clothes, toothbrushes and other items like these she'd need in order to keep on living a normal life. She couldn't return to her place to actually take all her stuff so she accepted to go out with Michael and to shop with him.

He was such a patient and caring man that Charlie was almost pissed knowing well that she would never have her chance to go out with him... She was also surprised to see that he was single. That was hard to believe that a handsome man like him was single, that was almost a blasphemy thought Charlie as they walked inside the store. Intrigued, Charlie looked up at him as he was paying for her stuff at the cashier counter.

"How come you're single?" He looked down at Charlie and chuckled, a bit surprised by her question.

"How come I'm single? Talk about a question. You're quite something, you know this!" He took the plastic bags and Charlie followed him outside of the store. She had a feeling she shouldn't have asked this question, but she didn't really think about it in the first place.

"I'm sorry, It was inappropriate. Thank you for the things you bought me... I think you've done more in one evening than what my dad has done for me in 14 years of existence." She looked up at him and everytime he was smiling at her and that his round cheeks became more prominent, Charlie couldn't help admiring him...

"It's ok...I'm single because we decided to divorce 2 years ago. Just the ordinary stuff in the life of an old couple. She actually was my high school sweetheart!" He mentioned and Charlie nodded her head.

"That's kinda cute..." She said while stepping inside her teacher's car. She looked down at the cast covering her wrist and she sighed, knowing well it was her right wrist and since she was writing with her right hand, Charlie knew it would be difficult to write at school.

"Do you need other stuff?" Michael asked her before departing the parking lot of the shopping center. Charlie was ok, at least she had everything she needed. He had even bought her pads, which totally embarrassed her, not wanting her teacher to know that she was by now having her periods like a grown-up woman. The mere thought about it was sending her cheeks blushing red. But at the same time, she needed them and he was with her, so it was somehow hard to hide it away from him.

"Would you like to stop at the ice cream parlor?" He demanded her as the car was cruising down the road.

"No, no! I'm not really in the mood for that. I just wanna get some sleep. I didn't sleep a lol last night..." She had a rough day with her father getting arrested and her broken wrist, and not to forget the lack of sleep from the previous night, Charlie started to feel the fatigue creeping in her and actually needed of a good hot shower and a long night of sleep. Which she did when they arrived at his place. Michael showed her where was located the bathroom and Charlie took her shower, careful at not wetting her new cast. She then dried herself with the towel once she was done taking her shower and dressed in these new pajamas he had bought her...

When she came out of the bathroom, she returned downstairs where he was busy preparing his notes for tomorrow's classes.

"Thank you for everything, Michael." She said as she stood near the fridge. She knew he didn't have to do what he did for her today. She was well aware that having her at his place was probably not something he had expected, and she was very grateful toward him.

"It's ok Charlie. I know I've done the right thing." He smiled at her and Charlie ran to him and wrapped her arms around him before leaning her head against his shirt over his chest.

"Thank you for believing me!" She felt his large hand caressing her short hair and as his hand kept stroking her hair, the teenage girl became aroused as his large hand gently comforted her. She could feel the butterflies in her stomach, just like when seeing him, but this time it was more intense as she felt the warm touch of his strong and reassuring hand over her hair.

She knew it was wrong on so many levels, but he didn't need to know that. It would be her little secret... She finally pulled her head away from his touch and Charlie wished him a good night, really in the need for sleep. The teenage girl walked to the guest bedroom and she let herself fell on the mattress, within a minute, Charlie had fallen asleep under the warm sheets, finally able to close an eye as she knew that she wasn't in pain and in danger anymore since she was in Michael's house and that her father would at least be in jail for a night.

3:39 A.M.

Michael was deeply asleep when he felt someone shaking his arms several times.

"Michael! Michael!!" His eyes slowly opened and he quickly sat up in his bed as Charlie was standing nearby his bed, in tears and shaking. He noticed how the weather was bad outside with the thunderstorm. The winds were howling loudly and the rain was hitting the windows hard, which probably scared the teenage girl.

"It's ok Charlie, don't cry. The storm is almost over...." He said with his deep and soothing voice. He brought his hand to her face and stroke her cheek with the back of his hand, that's when he realized that her skin was hot to the touch.

"I'm Scared!!" Charlie cried out that she was afraid, and the next thing he knew, the teenage girl got up in his bed and clung to him, crying that her father would come back for her and take her away. His blue eyes widened, taken unaware by Charlie's sudden embrace. She obviously wanted to be wrapped in his arms and even though he knew that he should have brought back Charlie to her bed, he still wrapped his strong arms around her fragile silhouette and tried to soothe down the crying teenager while she sat on his laps. She probably had a bad dream and felt the need to be reassured, but again, it felt a bit awkward for Michael as Charlie allowed herself in his bed.

He once again caressed her short hair and even kissed her on top of her head.

"It's ok, I'm here Charlie, no one's going to hurt you or take you away.." Her head slowly leaned against his chest and slowly but surely, Charlie's tears became a thing of the past as he held her close to him in his warm arms. He waited until the teenage girl fell back asleep in his arms before bringing her back to her bed. He lay her down on the bed and pulled the sheets just over her legs as he believed she was feverish.

He snorted in amusement as he placed his hands on his hips and looked down at the sleeping teenage girl, oblivious to the fact that Charlie was adoring him, but at the same time, he didn't come down from the last shower, he knew the teenage girl was attached to him, but he didn't know that she was attracted to him...

He went back to bed and woke up near seven in the morning, even though he didn't have any Mathematics classes in the morning, he still woke up early with the idea of waking Charlie in order to send her to school. Alas, the teenage girl wasn't feeling good at all as Michael entered her bedroom and noticed how sick she was. Her forehead was boiling hot and her back was sweating profusely.

"My, my..." He exclaimed, aware that she wasn't feeling good at all and that he couldn't send her to school like this. At the same time, he knew she had gone through a lot yesterday and she was deserving a day off from school.

"Charlie?" He woke her up and as she sat up in the bed, he could tell how confused she was by the gaze displayed on her face. He pressed his hand against her forehead and sighed. He brought her a glass of water after she asked for one and he sat next to her on her bed.

"I'll keep you home today, but I'm working this afternoon, you'll stay by yourself until I'll come back home near 5:30 tonight since it's the Mathematics after-class." Without any doubt, the teenage girl's blue eyes widened and she informed Michael that she would be fine to go to school today.

"It's ok, I can go to school!" She said. He didn't think it was a good idea at all.

"No, Charlie! You're sick, you're boiling hot! There's no way I'm sending you to school!" Being the stubborn girl she was, Charlie shook her head not agreeing at all with Michael.

"Nope! I'm going to school, I'll be fine! I don't want to stay alone today..." Michael sighed and decided to test her...

"Fine, if you really wanna go to school..." He was on his way getting out of the bedroom when he stopped dead in his track under the door frame.

"Now, that I think of it, I don't have any classes at all today, I just have the after-class from 3:30 to 4:45 PM." Charlie looked up at Michael and he had indeed confused her thoughts here. She looked like she was pondering in silence.

"Alright then, I'll stay home..." She added before lying back in the bed. It wasn't true, he had classes this afternoon, he just wanted to see how she would react and she had reacted just the way he had expected. He returned downstairs and cooked himself something to eat for breakfast. When he checked back on Charlie an hour later, the teenage girl had fallen back asleep and she was sleeping quite deeply. He was hoping she'd sleep for the remaining of the day like this.

He did some clean up in his house during the morning and after lunchtime, he prepared himself for work and once again he checked on Charlie and she was still sleeping. He wrote her a note explaining to her that he had classes after all and that he'd be back near dinner time and that if she wanted something, she could call him at the phone number he had written down on the note.

As Mr. Roberts was on his way to depart the house, Charlie came running downstairs, asking him where he was going. Panic was all across her face and her eyes were wet and swollen.

"I got classes, after all, I'll be back for dinner time, just be my guest, you can watch the TV or even read a book, I got plenty of them in the living room." But Charlie didn't want to be left alone at Michael's house. She was afraid her father would find out where she was and kidnap her.

"No!! Please, stay with me! He'll come for me and hurt me!!" She ran to him and wrapped her arms around him, making it awkward as she was quite small next to him.

"No, Charlie, I can't, I gotta go to work. I'll be back for dinner time. Nothing will happen to you, I promise. Your father won't try to approach you and if he does, call the cops!!" She began crying and he sighed, wondering if she would cry like this every time something wouldn't please her.

"No, please... Stay with me!!" She clung to him like glue, refusing to let go of the 6'4" man, but Michael couldn't stay home. He grabbed her arms and unwrapped them from his waist before freeing himself from her weak grip.

"That's enough Charlie, don't behave like a baby!! I don't like this at all!" He finally snapped at the teenage girl and Charlie.
clung again to him, not wanting to let him go.

"Nooo! Please, Michael, stay with me!!" She begged him to stay as if he was leaving forever. Michael was beginning to run short of patience with her. Even though he was used with having several students in his classes, he wasn't used at all at having one like Charlie who required way more attention, and especially that she appeared to be fond of him, something he began to suspect.

"Oh no, you won't do this to me, little girl, I'm old enough to be your father and I know you're going through a hard time, but you have to understand that I still have a job to do!" But even though Michael explained Charlie the reasons why he couldn't stay home, the teenage girl wasn't accepting no for an answer and she jumped in his arms and wrapped her legs around his waist, while she leaned her head against his shoulder. Begging him through her cries to stay with her.

To be honest, Michael wasn't in the mood at all for this with Charlie. He was used to be by himself, alone in his peaceful house, but with Charlie, it was completely different. She had abruptly changed his life and he wasn't sure any more he'd be able to take care of her. Not that he had to, he owed her nothing, but he felt sorry for her and she was the most polite and adorable student he had from all of his classes. Charlie was also reminding him of Lea, his deceased daughter who would have turned 17 in a few weeks. In fact, she was 14 when she passed away...

"ENOUGH!!" He quickly grew tired of her childish behavior and unwrapped her legs from his waist before pushing her down from him, but as Charlie found herself on the ground, she wrapped her fingers around his left ankle, refusing to let him go.

"CHARLIE!!! LET ME GO FOR CHRIST SAKE!!" As he tried to free his ankle from her hands, his eyes spotted the skin on her lower back and her sides as her pajamas top slide up when she was dragged on the ground while he tried to free himself from her grip. She had bruises covering the entire areas. He stopped moving and as Charlie kept crying, his eyes were focusing on what appeared to be bruises done by someone. He lowered down to her and lifted her pajama top a little just to see if she had any other bruises.

When he pressed on one of her sides, Charlie rapidly cried out in pain and looked up at him with a frightened regard. He didn't want to hurt her, but he quickly understood that this child had been beaten more than once by her father at this point. Her skin was also boiling hot and he didn't like this at all. He held his right hand to Charlie in order to help her get back on her feet. When she was finally back on her feet, Michael walked her to the bathroom upstairs where he kept his thermometer.

She kept on sobbing and Michael simply allowed her to do so. She would eventually stop crying at some point, he hoped anyway He knew he'd be late for his classes at school, but he wanted to make sure that Charlie would be fine once he'd leave home, that is if he would leave home, to begin with. As he demanded Charlie to open her mouth, he inserted the thermometer under her tongue and asked her to keep her mouth closed. He waited for a good minute before pulling off the thermometer from her mouth and his blue eyes enlarged when he read the temperature indicated by the glass thermometer.

"Urghh!" He knew that a fever of 102 F was a fever that needed to be treated, but he also had classes to attend. He just couldn't leave Charlie alone at home, only to come back later with a worse fever. He rummaged through his cabinet and found a bottle of Advil, which would be a good start.

"There, you going to take two pills like this and I will run you a bath for your fever..." She shooked her head when he informed her that she'd need to take a cold bath to lower down her fever.

"No, I don't want!" Either she liked it or not, it's not as if she had the choice at this point.

"Don't worry, it won't be that cold, just lukewarm, or else your temperature won't lower down." As he glanced down at the time displayed on his watch, Michael knew he'd be late for his first class.

"Wait for me in here Charlie, get in the bathtub during this time. I got a call to make" Michael returned downstairs and dialed the phone number of the 9th-grade principal to inform him that he'd be late.

"Hi, it's Michael Roberts in here. I'll be late for my first class this afternoon if you could find another teacher for this class, it would be much appreciated." He knew the Principal wouldn't enjoy this at all. Michael was rarely late or absent from his classes, but since he had taken Charlie under his wings, his life had taken an abrupt turn.

"Mr. Roberts, are you aware that I cannot find a teacher to replace you like this? Your students are about to show in less than 30 minutes. Oh, and one more thing, the CPS or if you prefer the Child Protection Services called me this morning concerning Charlie Callaway, I know how much you want to help this child, but after the trial, you and I know well what will happen with her! She'll be placed in a Foster Family as you cannot legally take care of this child."

Michael was aware of this and he knew that he'd need to become a licensed foster parent in order to take care of Charlie.

"I know this, but what if I apply to be a kinship caregiver for Charlie? I know I'm not related to her, but we're connecting well and I don't want to let her go in some random family..." The Principal interrupted Michael dryly.

"Mr. Roberts, I do realize that the death of your daughter is something you have to deal with every day, but you just cannot save every abused children crossing your path. I'll give you the afternoon off, as for your Mathematics after-class, I will inform the students that it will be postponed until tomorrow. Don't get me wrong Mr. Roberts, you're an excellent teacher, and I do fathom why you wanna help this child, but remember that she'll be taken in good care once she'll be in her foster family. Of course, if you really wanna go through all the trouble of becoming a legal foster parent, please go ahead and do what you have to do, but I want you back tomorrow morning at school, I hope I've made myself clear Mr. Roberts." The next thing Michael knew, the principal had already ended the conversation over the phone.

Michael passed a hand through his grey hair and returned upstairs to check on Charlie. He knocked on the bathroom door and told Charlie that she could get out of the tub.

"It's ok Charlie, get out of the tub and dress into your pajamas, I'll check your temperature to see if it's lowered down." He heard Charlie responding back to him and the teenage girl exited the bathroom a few minutes later dressed in the same pajamas she had this morning. She didn't appear to feel better, but as he checked her temperature with the thermometer, it had lowered down a bit.

"Alright... it has lowered down a bit. Are you hungry?" He grinned at her but the teenage girl shook her head.

"I'm not hungry at all..."

"Ok, well, I'll cook something and if you feel hungry later, it'll be in the fridge for you. By the way, I'm staying home today, I called the principal and he gave me the afternoon off." As he revealed Charlie that he was staying home, the bad mood on her face changed rapidly to something more joyful.

"Really? I won't be alone this afternoon?" The next thing he knew, the teenage girl wrapped her arms around him and leaned her head against his chest. Even though she had thrown a tantrum a few minutes before he called his principal, Michael wasn't mad anymore at her. She was indeed a young girl who didn't grow up with a lot of affection coming from her relatives and as he was growing into a lonely man, Michael felt that having Charlie around him could do him some good. He knew it wouldn't bring him back his daughter, but at least he would have someone to take care of...


Submitted: April 30, 2019

© Copyright 2021 Miss Gallagher. All rights reserved.

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