Chapter 28: Returning Home: Part 1 (Lizzie’s POV)

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Two hours later, I pull my car into the driveway of my house. I’m home, finally home. I am barely out of the car when I look up and see my dad standing by the mailbox with Judy. I also see someone I am not expecting, Abby’s mom.

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“Welcome home Lizzie!” my dad says, embracing me. It feels so nice to see him again. I know I had been back here around Thanksgiving, but it was such a short time. This time around, I had three weeks to spend.

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“It’s nice to see you again, Lizzie” says Mrs. Clawson. She then looks around in confusion. “Where is Abby?”

“Oh.” I let my dad go and turn to her. It is clear that Abby has not told her mother about what happened between us, but I don’t want to be the one to. “Abby told me she was taking the Greyhound. I’m not sure when she will be back.”

Mrs. Clawson frowns. “She’s taking the Greyhound? She never told me that. Why didn’t you two ride together?”

“ Um…” I start, but thankfully, my mother comes hurrying over from the front door.

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“Lizzie dear! Your home!” she cries and pulls me into a tight hug.

“Mom! Don’t squeeze me to death!

My mom laughs. “I’m sorry. I have just missed you!”

“I was home three weeks ago.”

“Four days? That was not long enough!”

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“Well, I guess I should be heading home then,” Mrs. Clawson says, moving away from us. “Nice to see you again, Lizzie.” She then turns and walks briskly back across the street. I think I may have imagined it, but it almost looks like she shoots me a look of disdain before heading inside her house.

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I then get distracted by Judy giving me a big hug.

“I’m glad your back, Liz,” she says. “It’s been weird without you here.”

“I know, I feel exactly the same. Do you want to help me unpack? You can fill me in on everything that happened while I was away.”

Judy grins. “Sure.”

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Two hours later, I am all unpacked and thrilled to be back in my room again. It still looks the same, exactly how I left it.

Judy changes into her nightgown and sits on my bed. She had just finished telling me about all her new adventures in 6th grade. It all takes me back. It’s strange to think those years are far behind me.

“So I decided to go with Tommy,” Judy was saying. “It was weird, but we actually had fun.” Apparently she had been having a dilemma that I never faced, trying to decide between two guys she could go to her six grade activity night with.

“So, does that mean you like Tommy now?”

Judy shrugs. “I don’t know. It’s all new to me. I didn’t even know he liked me in that way.”

“All right, just keep me posted.”

Judy laughs and lies back against my pillows. “I will.”

I am trying to be as unbiased as I can. While it is true that Abby and I aren’t friends anymore, that doesn’t mean that Judy and Tommy couldn’t be.

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I leave to use the restroom and brush my teeth, but the time I get back, Judy has fallen asleep. She looks so peaceful that I cover her up with my comforters and decide not to wake her. The last time we had had a sleepover like this, was when she was seven years old and thought that the boogieman was hiding under her bed. That and I guess sometimes on the holidays.

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After watching her for a minute, I walk over to my dresser and change into my pajamas. I then check myself in the mirror and smile at my reflection. Man it is so nice to be home.

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Letting out a little yawn, I walk over to the other side of my bed and slip under the covers. It can’t explain how nice it feels to be sleeping in my bed again. Within five minutes of my head lying against my pillows, I fall sleep.

-Evanglina

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