I plan on getting up early on Friday, but I end up not waking up until ten. I had totally set my alarm, but when I check the clock, I see it has been turned off. Charls. He probably wanted me to sleep in. He has been telling me to relax the past few days and not worry so much, but how could I not? According to Janice, someone had anonymously sent a picture of our new rental and future sorority house totally trashed! I thought maybe it was a prank, until Kimberly called to tell me the next day that she had received the same e-mail! Someone was totally messing with us, and I know exactly who. I just never thought that they would sink that low.
Well, if the Alpha Beta Phis thought that this was going to scare us away, they are wrong. We are so close to getting the recognition we deserve and I am not about to let this get in the way.
Oh course, this does mean cutting my winter vacation short, which I know my mom does not like. She also wanted me to wait and deal with it after new year’s, but I can’t wait. With our new recruits coming and everything, I can’t afford to wait. The house needs to be in shape by the time they arrive next week.
With that said, I do end up staying an extra four days which is saying a lot. I had wanted to get back on the road that next morning, but Charls told me that I should try and relax. After all it was going to be a whole three months before I had another break, which is totally true.
Still, I have to say, it has been pretty difficult trying to keep my mind on anything else, even with my mom’s outings and Charls doing his best to distract me in and out of the bedroom. But today is the day. We are heading back to campus and nothing is going to change my mind. Not even Charls turning off my alarm clock. Nice try.
After taking a shower and getting dressed, I finish packing up all my things into my suitcases. I then pull Charls’s suitcases toward the door as well. They are pretty heavy and I start to wonder how much clothes he brought with him. I then head out and downstairs.
“Hey babe,” Charls says as I pass by him on my way into the kitchen. “Sleep well?”
“Yes, and I know what you did.” When Charls looks at me confused, I smile. “I know you turned off my alarm. Charls, I set it for a reason. You know I want to head back to campus today.”
Charls sighs and pours himself a cup of coffee. “Well, it wasn’t exactly my idea.”
“Oh really?” I grab a plate of waffles from the fridge and take a seat at the table. “So I suppose my mother told you to turn my alarm off?”
“As a matter of fact, she did,” Charls says with a nod and he takes a sip of his coffee.
I look at him skeptically. “Right,” I say slowly and take a bite of my waffles.
“I’m serious! You know she has been trying to get you to stay through New Year’s.”
“Yah, but turning off my alarm clock?”
“I think she thought that it would make you change your mind and stay another day.”
“She know she just misses you.”
Just then my mom walks into the room.
“Morning,” she says to Charls with a smile and then she looks at me a bit surprised. “Abby? You’re up already? I thought you would still be sleeping?”
I raise an eyebrow. “Why? Because you told Charls to turn off my alarm clock?”
My mom sighs. “Abby, I just think you should stay through the holidays.”
“I know you want me to mom and I do too, but I really need to get back up there and assess the damages. This is the Beta Gamma Kappas future sorority house and I need to make sure the Alpha Beta Phis didn’t ruin it.”
Charls rises from his chair. “You really think it was them?”
I roll my eyes. “Of course it was them. Who else would want to ruin our sorority house?”
I finish my waffles and then down a glass of orange juice before washing my dishes at the sink.
“Well, I guess we will be heading out,” Charls says to my mother. “I’m sorry I couldn’t change her mind.”
My mom looks disappointed. “It’s all right, you tried.”
I try to hold myself from laughing. It is so weird how close my mom and Charls have gotten during this visit. They even spent all of last evening playing chess and Charls finally managed to beat her! I could tell my mom was really annoyed about it, but she did her best not to show it. I think she was having too much fun. Too bad Tommy wasn’t around to see it.
After washing my dishes, Charls helps me load all of his and my suitcases into the car. It takes about two loads and I am all set to go. I walk over to my mom who is staring at me with sadness in her eyes.
“Oh mom,” I say, giving her a hug, “I’ll be back in a couple months!”
“Are you sure you can’t stay a few more days?” she asks. “New Year’s is right around the corner and Tommy will be back! He is going to be upset for not being able to see you.”
“I know, I know, but I have to go. Classes starts in three days, and I want the building to at least be in good shape by then. Judging by what happened, we may have a lot of work ahead of us.”
My mom sighs and lets me go. “Oh okay. I understand. I’m not happy about it though.”
“Neither am I.” I give her a quick kiss on the cheek. “I’ll give you a call when I get there. Promise.”
My cellphone then beeps and glancing down, I see ten text messages and three missed calls from Lizzie, asking what is going on and if we were still going back to campus today.
“We better go. Lizzie is getting anxious.”
My mom rolls her eyes. “That girl is such a busy body. She ought to chill out and relax and maybe get la-”
“Thank you, mom,” I say, interrupting her comment, which I had a feeling was going to be something rude, and then add, “I’ll see you soon.”
I then walk out with the last of my bags into our front yard following after Charls.
As we approach my car, I send Lizzie a quick text,
Sorry about not answering before. We are heading to the car now. Let me know when you are ready to leave.
I then toss my things into the back of the car and then slip inside.
I wake up early Friday morning to my alarm clock going off. I am about to go back to sleep when I remember the reason why I set the alarm in the first place. Today was the day Abby and I were going back to campus. I sigh. As angry as I was about the vandalism of our new rental house, I wish we didn’t have to back up so soon. I was really enjoying spending time with my family. I was hoping to spend New Year’s with them as well. Besides, Kimberly had told Abby that she had contacted the college board about it and that they were investigating. Then again, they were not going to be the ones to fix it anytime soon since it was probably going to take time for them to figure out what happened. Meaning we would have to fix it up or try and find another place to live.
After all, the dorms were probably already all filled by now. With school starting on Tuesday, it was a priority for us to finish up by then.
So instead of going back to sleep, I get up out of bed and then make it neatly, before heading into the bathroom.
I take a nice hot shower and primp myself briefly before leaving. Michael was meeting us at campus and I want to look my best. He had left the day after Christmas to make sure that everything was in order with his new apartment. Not that he would care so much. Michael loves me however I look. He loves me. It’s so weird to say that now. Well not totally weird. I had been feeling that way toward him for a while now, but I had just not said the words to myself or him yet. It felt so great to say them now. I can’t believe I wasted all that time freaking out over it and inviting him home with me over winter break. The past few days have been amazing with him. I’ve shown him around all over town and taken time for him to spend with my parents. It’s only a shame that Judy hasn’t really gotten to meet him and with me leaving, she would have to wait until summer. I know she is going to be mad when she gets back with Viola and I am not home. I know Abby said I could stay back if I want to, but I can’t. If I want to show my leadership and help her, I have to go. I can’t let Abby tackle everything by herself.
After leaving the bathroom, I go downstairs to the kitchen. My dad is in his pajamas washing his plate in the sink. He smiles at me as I walk in.
“Morning Lizzie,” he says with a smile.
“Morning dad,” I say back. I then grab some leftover waffles from yesterday’s breakfast from the refrigerator and then take a seat on the kitchen stool to eat.
“You still going back up to Aberdale U today?” my dad asks.
I nod through a bite of my waffles. “Yes, unfortunately. With everything going on with the rental building, I need to help Abby get everything all cleaned up. After all, we may have some new recruits for the sorority staying with us. We won’t if the place is in shambles.”
“I still can’t believe someone would do such a thing.”
I shrug. “I can. We’ve been getting resistance from the Alpha Beta Phis since Abby started this whole thing. They are obviously intimidated by us. Why, I don’t know.”
My dad smiles. “Well that’s probably because they know what wonderful ladies you all are. I know that you and Abby are going to make everything work out.”
“I sure hope so.”
“Oh, you will dear.”
I glance over my shoulder and see my mother entering the room in her blue robe.
“I have faith in the both of you,” she says.
I smile. “That’s quite a change from a couple days ago.”
I had told my mother about my involvement in Abby’s new sorority a few days after Christmas. I thought it might make things not as tense between my mother and Mrs. Clawson. However, my mom was not too pleased to hear it.
“Why would you want to be a part of the people that caused you so much heartache last year? Not to mention, almost cost you and Abby your friendship?” she had asked. I had then had to explain to her how Abby’s sorority was going to be different and bring people together instead of dividing them. How we were focusing more on the bonding of sisterhood and the school. My mom calmed down a bit, but she was still a bit reluctant to support it. Now it looked like she had changed her mind.
“Well I guess I have come around to the idea,” my mom says, entering into the kitchen. “But only if you are happy doing this.”
I nod. “I am mom.”
“Well, sororities do have good connections in the workforce,” my dad pipes in.
“Yah, but we are starting a completely new sorority dad,” I point out.
My dad nods. “True, but when your chapter becomes known and you all graduate and become successful, you will have connections to help out the new members.”
I grin. “That is true.”
“My daughter the sorority girl,” my mother says and then shakes her head. “I never thought I would see the day.”
I laugh. “Neither did I.”
“Judy is going to be very surprised,” my dad says with a smile. “Although she is probably going to be more upset that she wasn’t able to see you off.”
I sigh. “I know. I feel so bad that I am going to miss her and Aunt Viola. Please tell them how sorry I am.”
“Will do, but I think you should at least try and give Judy a call when she gets home tomorrow.”
My mom then glances at the clock. “Lizzie, you and Abby are leaving in a bit, right?”
“Yup,” I say, finishing up my waffles, “but I should call Abby to make sure.” I then give Abby a call, but she doesn’t answer. Confused, I call twice more, but she still doesn’t pick up the phone.
“That’s weird, she’s not answering.”
My dad shrugs. “Maybe she slept in.”
“She wouldn’t do that. She is the one that wanted us to get back so bad.”
“You never know.”
I decide to leave her text and then chat with my dad and mom a while longer.
We end up all talking for almost two hours, with me continuously leaving messages for Abby. I am starting to wonder what the heck is going on over there. If Abby had changed her mind about us going back, she needed to tell me. I had no problem waiting a bit. I honestly really wanted to see Judy and Aunt Viola before I left.
I then take my empty plate to the sink and wash it.
I then send Abby a final text and go up to my room to finish packing. Just as I finish, I get a text from Abby. “Finally!” I think. She says she is already to go. I then text her to come right over and then head downstairs to say goodbye to my mother.
“You better make sure you call this time,” my mom says as she gives me a hug. “You always say you will, but then you don’t.”
I laugh. “I’m sorry. I guess I just get so caught up in what is going on that I keep forgetting.”
“Well, try and find some time. Your father and I miss you.”
“Me too mom,” I say, and then give her a squeeze.
I hear the doorbell ring and then a minute later my dad enters into the room with Abby following behind him.
“Took you long enough!” I say to her. “I was beginning to think you changed your mind.”
Abby raises her shoulders. “Hey, it wasn’t my fault! My mom told Charls to turn off my alarm so that I would sleep in. She really does not want me to go back to campus.”
My dad pulls me into a hug. “Maybe I should have thought of that,” my dad says with a smile and I chuckle.
“Well, you have a safe ride up girls,” my dad says. “And please do call when you get there.”
I salute him. “Will do,” I say with a grin and then follow Abby out of the room.
I then pick up my last bag from the hallway and then Abby and I leave through the front door.
“Again, sorry about running late,” Abby says when we reach the sidewalk.
I shake my head. “No problem. I can’t blame your mother for wanting you to stay. I kind of wanted to as well.”
“You know you don’t have to come with me Liz.”
“Yes I do. I am a part of this sorority too, and I want to help make sure it is in order.”
Abby smiles. “All right then. I guess we are off!”
We both then get into our cars and head off onto the highway. I twist my radio dial and the sounds of “When I’m Gone,” by Anna Kendrick starts blaring from my speakers. I bob my head to the beat and smile. It should be a peaceful ride. I glance at my phone and see a message from Janice. She was apparently cutting her vacation short as well and would be at campus in twenty minutes. I feel a bit nervous. For our sake, I hope the damage of the building isn’t as bad as we all think.