So I took down my previous posts about our financial hardship and paypal donation due to the fact that I got the job I have been wanting! I start in March. I was also able to work things out with our car payments with the bank too. As far as everything else, it’ll work itself out.
Anyways, this is a long chapter, so get ready!
Excitement wasn’t the word to describe how I was feeling. Butterflies in the stomach didn’t even compare to the sensation that danced inside of me. A blanket of warmth covered my entire body and beads of sweat began to form, slowly traveling its way down my temples. My palms were sticky with its own sweat and it felt as if someone smeared menthol all over my face. I had no idea what was going on with me. You would think I was about to sell my soul to the devil himself. It was just a house, not a blood-written contract. I could sell it at any time if I wanted to. I could rapidly change my mind and settle on an apartment or a rental home if I choose to. So why was I so nervous? Yes, it’s a huge decision to make, but I had been contemplating this moment for a long time. I should be use to the idea by now.
We met with Millie at her office to talk about what exactly I was looking for. Her office was huge; bigger than I thought it would be. Agents were spread all over the building, attempting to buildup their clientele with potential buyers. The teal blue walls created the warm atmosphere within the office and red plush couches greeted you as soon as you walked through the door. By observing the decor, you could clearly see that the company had been very successful in their endeavors, which made me feel more confident in my choice of realtors.
Millie was very nice, helpful and provided me with information that would be beneficial to my decision of buying a home. By this time I had calmed down a little and managed to not look as if I was about to vomit all over the place and explained to her I wanted a house that was either on the beach or overlooked it. It was just something I was use to. Even back in Hillcrest, we always lived seconds away from the beach. “I have to be honest with you,” Millie began. “Finding a house on the beach in Meadows Glenn will be difficult. They don’t normally go on the market often, and when they do, they get snatched up very quickly.” I admitted I was a little disappointed, but understood what she was saying. I didn’t know the real estate market at all, so I had no choice but to trust her judgement. “Right now, I don’t have a beach house on the market, but I do have a few houses that are near the beach to show you today if you are still interested?” she asked.
“Couldn’t hurt,” I replied.
She showed us three homes that day, two of which were near the beach and one was in the hills and not so near the beach. All the homes were very nice and had lots of potential, but were all wrong for me. Forget the fact they weren’t beach homes, but each house didn’t possess certain features that I liked nor did the flow of the layout feel right to me. This house hunting was already proving to be stressful and it was only the first day. “It takes time,” Millie assured comfortingly. “We’ll find you the right home, don’t worry. In the meantime, I’ll keep looking and if you happen to see a house in the market that our company is selling, then feel free to give me a call and we’ll check it out, okay?” I agreed and Millie, Jennica and myself went our separate ways.
Once we got back in the car, Jennica acknowledged the dissatisfaction on my face that I wasn’t necessarily trying to hide. “This is only the first day, Addy. Don’t get discouraged yet,” she said, pulling away from the last home we saw and drove down the hillside to head back into town.
“I know, it’s just I think my chances of getting a house on the beach is very slim to none.”
“Well, then you might have to settle for something else,” she simply replied. Her lack of concern was a little disheartening, but then again, this was Jennica. If she couldn’t benefit from it, then she could care less how it went either way.
“I don’t want to and I shouldn’t have to. I work very hard and I don’t ask for much. All I want is my dream house or something close to it.” It wasn’t as if I was asking for a mansion; just a simple house on or very near the beach that met my expectations. Jennica was able to have hers so I don’t know why I shouldn’t be able to.
She always got whatever she wanted ever since we were little kids. She had both of her biological parents, she was more popular, and was never without a boyfriend. Now she had the better car, job, and a house. I tried not be jealous of her, but I couldn’t help it at times. She was living the perfect life and I wasn’t. The more I thought about it, the more determined I was about getting what I wanted, and the house was just a start.
Once we were back in town, she suggested us going to a bar to unwind for a bit. Normally the bar wasn’t my scene, but I was so stressed out that I agreed to go. Unwinding is exactly what I needed to do. We ended up at Roadhouse Bar, an old western-themed establishment near our house. The bar was kept dim with green and red colored lighting throughout. The air was kept thick with cigarette smoke and stale musty cologne of lonely men looking for a good time. The music streamed uplifting country music causing the ambience to be more pleasant that what you would normally see in the movies. I had never been here before, but she was a regular. I silently pondered if this was where she met some of her late-night rendezvous prior to Vince. We sat at the bar and ordered some drinks and talked for a while about everything that had been going on with us. She spoke about her relationship with Vince and I discussed my newfound friendship with Cyler. Jennica’s eyes grew twice its size when I mentioned his name. “Is he cute?” she asked curiously with a wide grin.
“Yeah,” I smiled.
“So what are you waiting for?” she asked.
“I just met him, Jenn! I can’t just be all over the guy!” I exclaimed.
“Why not? Lots of women do it,” she replied matter-of-factually.
“I’m not lots of women. I want to take it slow and start off as friends first,” I told her. She rolled her eyes and turned back to her drink. Sex on the Beach was her choice of drink while I sipped on a more classier selection of a sour apple martini.
“If this was a year ago, you would’ve been all over him by now,” she pointed out.
“Exactly, and look where that got me.” Jennica’s smile faded and she nodded sympathetically.
“How about we just have some fun tonight, hmm? I bet you can’t ride the bull without falling off,” she dared.
I looked over at the mechanical bull resting on display in the middle of the bar. “I can and I will,” I told her confidently before standing up from the uncomfortable stool I was sitting on and heading over to the bull. Jennica watched from her seat while I hopped on and started. It was a rough ride and it nearly threw me clear across the room, but I managed to hang on for dear life the entire time. “I told ya!” I called out to her when it was over.
“Well done,” she proclaimed. “Now let’s dance!”
There was a section of the corner of the bar where a couple of red spotlights dimly shone down onto a small stage. So we strode over there and began to dance like a couple of crazies. We were gaining some attention of mixed reactions, but we didn’t care. We were too caught up in our moment of having fun while I was gladly relieving some stress that I soon forgot all about the house hunting.
It was in the wee hours of the morning when the bar finally closed and we stayed til the very end. Plastered out of my mind, Jennica had to assist me out of the bar to haul me to the car. It had been a long time since I had granted myself permission to let loose and have fun. It wasn’t like I was going home with a complete stranger or doing anything questionable. It was just a couple of girls having fun on a Friday night.
“We need to do this more often!” I blurted out, knowing it was the booze talking.
“Yeah, we’ll see,” she replied skeptically as we got into the car. She knew this was probably the only time she’ll ever be able to get me to go out to a bar and get plastered. I laughed at the thought while we went back home. Who knew.
The following day involved me being glued to my desk, submerging myself in the last chapter of the set I was to give to my publisher the next day. I was pleased with how much I was able to get done and silently thanking the heavens I didn’t wake up with a hangover. Still a little worried about finding the right home for me, I tried to ignore it as much as I could. I had to get this done.
The hours seemed to pass by quicker than quick sand. My eyelids felt heavy and my eyes stung from staring at the screen so much. I was almost finished, but thought it was best to take a break for awhile. My stomach rumbled a great deal and my joints ached when I arose from the desk. I could hear the creaking and crackling of my knees and elbows as I hobbled over to the bed and sat at the edge. I checked my phone for any messages and instantly noticed I had two new text messages; one from Cyler and one from my dad. I opened the one from my dad first and read that they were having a BBQ at the house and invited us over. I replied that Jennica was at work, but I would be there soon.
I then opened the one from Cyler:
Hey you…I just wanted to apologize for the other day if I seemed pushy or nosy. That wasn’t my intention. I just want us to be good friends and be able to talk to each other openly and honestly, but I know that kind of trust takes time. I hope you’ve had a good couple of days. Take care.
Promptly a smile emerged on my lips. I scooted backwards onto my bed to lay down and replied to his message:
Hey! My couple of days have been good, and I hope yours have been too. No need to apologize, I know you were just trying to get to know me. Right now, there are just some things about my past I’m not ready to talk about yet…but maybe in due time, that will change. I’m open to being friends and possibly more eventually…if it’s in the cards, but I won’t rush into anything. I can’t. I hope you understand.
Cyler never responded back to my text message and I wondered whether I hurt his feelings or not. He wanted an open and honest friendship so I was giving it to him. It was the right thing to do instead of letting him believe that I wanted something more than that right now. He was a really sweet guy and I’m sure any woman would be lucky to have him, including myself, but I wanted to be smart about it and not raise his hopes prematurely just to make him happy. I had to think about myself and what is best for me for a change.
Since my car was on the fritz again, Jennica let me borrow hers in case I needed to run any errands. I pulled her car into my parents’ driveway and headed up the stairs to the front door that hid behind a concrete wall. I adored this house so much and missed living here at times. The house was nestled on top of a hill that overlooked the ocean from the backyard. It had an abundance of windows to allow the natural sunlight emerge into the home and the backyard was large enough for a pool and two seating areas that included a wet bar.
“Addy!” Squealed Annalise when she opened the door. I greeted her with a hug and she let me inside. Annalise acted as if she hadn’t seen me in ages, but that was what I loved about her the most. She always appreciated good company. We stood in the foyer and talked for a few moments before I asked where everyone else was. “Oh, they’re all in the back. Your dad is grilling the hot dogs, Maddy and Shy are in the pool and Landon is making some drinks at the wet bar as usual,” she joked. She led me to the backyard where the party was and I immediately spotted my dad in the midst of a cloud of smoke around him.
“Hey, don’t burn the place down!” I taunted as I walked over to him. Dad looked over his shoulder towards me and smiled.
“Hey, you came!”
“Of course; where else would I be?” I asked rhetorically. He gave me a brief hug before swiftly turning back to the sizzling hot dogs. I spotted both Madison and Shy in the pool and Landon exactly where Annalise said he would be. I promptly greeted them and joined the two screaming teenagers in the pool.
Spending time with my family didn’t occur very often. I wasn’t entirely close with Landon growing up, but that didn’t stop us from being friendly to one another. I believed a lot of that had to do with Dad doting on me a lot. I often would get what I wanted, but that all changed once Madeline and Shiloh were born. I couldn’t blame them though, it wasn’t their fault. He always did what he could for me, and I know a lot of that stemmed from what went on with Quinn.
“So what have you been up to, Landon?” I asked him at the dinner table once the hot dogs had been served. Landon, being the closest in age, had become quite the intellectual individual who knew exactly what he wanted in life. Unlike myself, he wore confidence like a king. I admired him for that, but at the same time, I secretly wished I was more like him. He always knew what he wanted and got it easily.
“Not much,” he replied through his obnoxious chewing. “Just working a lot at the bar.” Landon swallowed his food and took a sip of his soda. “I’m still waiting for you to come see me, sis.”
Landon worked at a sports bar across town in the inner part of the city. He wanted to own his own sports bar one day and I knew with time, he would eventually get it too. “I’m sorry, I know I’ve been kinda…”
“Preoccupied?” he asked, finishing my sentence for me with a smirk on his face. I smiled before looking down at my plate again. “No worries,” he assured nonchalantly. “How’s your book coming along?”
I let out a small sigh as I glanced back over to my brother and the rest of my family who suddenly took an interest in the conversation. I could feel defeat seeping through every pore of my being and knew if it had an odor, it would have been enough to kill us all. “It’s going,” I replied, short but to the point. I was done with the last few chapters, but still had so far to go to finish the book. The thought of what my publisher would say once he received a copy of it put me on edge. If I didn’t get this book published soon, I might as well kiss my career as a novelist goodbye. Maybe I was only as good as a magazine writer.
“So I’ve decided to buy a house.” Without looking up from my food, I sensed the wide-eyed expressions upon everyone’s face as they looked towards me and waited for more. I didn’t mean to blurt it out the way I did, I just didn’t want to talk about my book anymore.
“Oh, where?” asked Dad, surprised at my sudden decision.
“Here. Well, not here here; in Meadows Glenn.” Dad pursed his lips together in an upside down grin motion and aptly nodded. “I went to see some houses yesterday with a real estate agent, but I didn’t see anything I liked. I got approved for enough to get a really nice house though,” I added, finding the silver lining to all my woes.
“What are you looking for?” asked Annalise as she took the last bite of her hotdog.
I thought for a moment. I had an idea of what I wanted, but didn’t know exactly what I wanted. “I want a beach house or a house overlooking the beach. Everything else I can work with really,” I stated. I told them what Millie told me about beach houses being scarce in that area and that it would be hard to find one right away. The familiar sensation of defeat rising arose within me once more. I wanted to go home, lay in my bed and give up trying to do anything. Why can’t things just go my way for once?
Dad collected all of the dirty dishes from the table and placed them into the stainless steel kitchen sink. After ordering Shiloh to clean the dishes and Madeline to finish clearing off the table and to let the family dog out, he pulled out his cell phone and held it in his hand as he looked over at me. “You know,” he began. “I think I may have a solution to your problem, sweetheart.”
“What do you mean?” I asked curiously.
He motioned for me to follow him to the backyard porch and I immediately followed him, intrigued as to what he had planned to do. When we reached the porch, he turned to me with a smile and his phone still in hand. “We have a regular at the bakery who comes in weekly to order cupcakes for her granddaughter’s Llama Scouts meetings. She mentioned to me a couple of weeks ago that she’s selling her house to move in with her son and grandchildren.”
“I think she has a house over in Nautical Heights,” he hinted. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. Nautical Heights was one of the most beautiful areas in Meadows Glenn; nestled on the hilltops overlooking the ocean. Being able to live there was always a dream of mine, but I never thought it would actually happen.
“Aren’t those homes super expensive?” I asked.
Dad hesitated, then nodded. “Yeah.” I sighed. There goes defeat again. “But I can help you out with that. We’ll go over everything and figure out the details later. First, let’s see if the house is still for sale.” He found the woman’s phone number in his call history on the day of her last order and began to call her. Lumps formed into my throat while I waited patiently for her to answer.
Once she answered, I listened intensively as he spoke with her about her home. I desperately needed and wanted for her home to be the one I wanted. I hated being behind in everything when it came to Jennica, and now, I was going to be the one who had everything as well. Hopefully.
“Great, thank you so much, Mrs. Moore. I’ll have her come on over right away,” I heard him say before he hung up. I squealed with excitement before he could say anything and I threw my arms around him, making sure to give him plenty of kisses. “Don’t thank me yet,” he warned. “There are other offers, but she’s holding out to see who outbids the other. If you like the house, then we can swoop in with a bigger offer.” I nodded happily. He walked back into the house and I followed him and waited while he jotted down something on a piece of paper. “This is the address. She’s there now waiting for you, so hurry,” he gestured as he handed me the address.
“Thanks Dad.” I gave him another hug, said my goodbyes to everyone else, and headed out the door to Jennica’s car.
Jennica’s very nice car. Yes, that will change too.
It was nice out with a touch of breeze and light clouds in the sky. Not a threat of rain in the air, which was the norm for the spring weather around here. The rain, however, never bothered me; it was always welcomed in my world. Most people associate the rain with depression and sadness. It was different for me. It uplifted my spirits and quenched my soul with prosperity, washing away whatever sadness that may lie dormant deep within me. When the rain stops, my soul dries right back up again like a shriveled sun-dried prune who had been kicked aside and neglected for days. At times, I felt empty. Dead maybe. I know I was alone, so why did I always feel alone?
The roads were fairly clear for a Saturday afternoon, therefore, it made the travel go a lot smoother. I drove to the woodsier part of town that was occupied by tall luscious trees along the streetlamps, then pulled onto a long winding road that exclusively harbored those trees until reaching a more clearer presence in the path. At the end of the street stood a white two-story modern home full of glass block windows that surrounded almost the entire second level. Immediately in the backyard, you could spot the large pool and in the panoramic view beyond the lot, was the cerulean blue ocean with large cascading hills in the distance that stood as a ground for the array of skyscrapers in the heart of the city.
Upon pulling into the driveway next to a white sedan that I only assumed was the owner’s, I cautiously walked up to the front door to ring the doorbell. An older woman, whom seemed to be well fixed in her seventies, poked her head around the corner and made way down the hall to greet me. “You must be Adelia?” she asked as she opened the door to let me inside.
“Mrs. Moore, it’s a pleasure to meet you,” I greeted politely with a gentle shake of her hand.
“Your father told me you were interested in buying a house by the beach,” she informed as she led me back down the long hall that eventually led to kitchen and family room. The house was immaculate with its light grey walls and hardwood floors. I was taken aback by its vastness right away, although it wasn’t too big for me either.
“I am,” I told her. “My family and I have always lived by the beach, so it’s all I’m use to.” Mrs. Weatherman smiled and nodded, noticeably understanding my desire to want a house such as this.
The house was wide with somewhat of an open layout. The living room was a nice size as well as the open dining area that could fit a large dining table. We entered the back of the house where it was airy, bright and full of the natural sunlight that beamed through the large floor-to-ceiling windows that covered the entire wall. The view was breathtaking. All I could do was to stand in front of the windows and stare out onto the view in awe. This was it. This was my home. This is what I have worked hard for and now, it’s finally paying off.
“Isn’t it wonderful?” asked Mrs. Moore as she had stood silently behind me for a moment, allowing me to take in all the beauty before me.
“Oh yeah,” I chuckled as I turned my attention on her.
We spoke for a brief moment about the house before I called my dad to tell him about it. We discussed the price and we urgently made an offer above asking price and above all the other offers Mrs. Moore had received. She was very pleased with what we offered and gladly accepted it.
After saying goodbye to Mrs. Moore, I headed back to the car. As I backed out of the driveway, made a U-turn to head back down the long winding road, I felt rejuvenated. In thirty days, I would finally have a house of my own. Even though my father helping to pay for it wasn’t necessarily ideal, I wasn’t too prideful to not let him help me. Jennica didn’t get her house on her own either, so there wasn’t anything I should feel embarrassed about. All I want is to have what’s rightfully mine. I deserve that much after what I’ve been through and nobody will stop me.