Read The Summer House Online

Authors: Lee Moore

The Summer House

BOOK: The Summer House
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I want to thank family and friends who helped me with the proofreading and pointing out the punctuation and other ways I’ve murdered the English language.

I write for fun, not to make large sums of money, so in the spirit of Indie authors out there on the net, much of this is self-edited, and any errors found herein are my responsibility.

Although many places and people in this book are described, I’ve taken liberties here and there.  All characters in this story are fictional, so any similarities to any real people in this book are purely circumstantial.  All people portrayed in this book are of course, over the age of eighteen.

I hope you have as much fun reading this as I did writing it. 

Copyright © 2013, Lee Moore. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any way without the prior written consent of the author. You may not circulate this publication in any format.

 

Chapter 1 –

 

When people told Caroline how much fun and excitement finishing her degree would be, they lied.

 

Here I was, finally.  It had taken a couple of years of junior college and almost four years at the University of Nevada to finish.  I had briefly thought of finding some part-time job to get me through the summer until I started on my Master’s program for social work.  I was tired, burnt out, and sick of being lonely, an outcast.

 

I’d always thought that the cliques ended in high school, and it was hard enough having ultra-religious parents like mine.  For years, I thought that if I kissed a boy, I was going to hell; my mother had all kinds of sayings about dating and relationships.  It wasn’t until a high school counselor pulled me aside, because of my behavior like being withdrawn so much my freshman year, that I found out I was living a very sheltered life.

 

It was the same counselor who explained to me what sex was actually about—not a destructive act that would damn my soul for all eternity.  I was shocked at first, but spent time at the library instead of home, and found a new world inside books.  To say I was pissed at being sheltered so long like this would be a huge understatement.

 

It was that year that I decided to go to college and then move as far from my parents as I could when I was done and starting my career.  Throughout the years it was hard, though; my beliefs had been turned inside out and upside down, but I couldn’t physically[?] shake who I was.  My determination paid off, and I had scholarships until my third year in college, when my mother got sick.

 

My father couldn’t take any time off work, so I went part time, and ran her to her chemo appointments when my father couldn’t. That cost me my scholarship, because I wasn’t taking more than twelve credit hours. It’s not that I hate my parents, but to them everything, and I mean everything, is God’s will.  They are so religious that being away from them at college for extended periods of time made me really open my eyes.

 

I no longer feared eternal hell and damnation for talking to a guy, or even kissing one.  I even fooled around with one once, but never went all the way.  I know, in my twenties and still a virgin.  I had just never met anyone that flipped that switch inside my head.  The guy at college that I fooled around with was way more interested in what was under my shirt than what was in my heart.  I will admit that I was slightly disappointed when he came all over my hand within a minute of beginning our make-out session. 

 

I took that as a sign (not from God per se) that he wasn’t the one for me, and I moved on.  I wanted to find a man that the romance writers were always talking about.  Tall, muscular, maybe even with some tattoos.  My God, if I ever brought somebody like that home, my mother would kill me!  Then again, it might be worth the fight to put a shot across their bows, just to prove that I was now a grownup and had been for years!

 

What should have been my final year in college seemed to stretch out forever.  I didn’t want to stay at home, and with no scholarships I worked at the casinos as a waitress to cover my small apartment and tuition.  Being young and single in Vegas, I got to meet a lot of interesting men at the casinos, and some of the propositions—well, I’m sure you can imagine what they were like.

 

My parents were screaming scandal my last couple years of college because of where I worked, and how I supported myself, and they finally wore me down to the point where I promised them I’d quit the casino as soon as I graduated.  I couldn’t wait until that moment, because I would find a job across the country and my ass would be gone!

 

So that’s how everything started, and how I got to this point.  I was at the very cusp of freedom, my diploma and credentials in hand. I left my job and went back home.  This wasn’t going to be good.

 

Chapter 2 –

 

“Caroline, change out of those clothes, you look like a slut.”

 

“Mom, this is a dress, there’s nothing hanging out.”

 

“Your arms and legs are bare for the whole world to see,” she told me, her cheeks flushing in indignation. 

 

“Too bad, Mom, you gave up the right to boss me around when I turned eighteen,” I told her, surprised I was sticking up for myself.

“Caroline,” my father thundered from the kitchen. “As long as you live in this house, you will follow our rules,” he told me, walking into the living room, where I was getting my shoes on to go meet up with a high school friend.

 

“Dad, I am going to meet Janice.  I haven’t seen her in over a year.”

 

“Then listen to your mother, and go change.”

 

“Yes, something more sensible, slacks, blouse, and none of that war
-paint like you have on your face.  You look like a hussy,” my mom said, softening her words where Daddy could hear.

 

“No, there’s nothing wrong with my makeup and dress,” I told them, spinning around, twirling to show off how sensible it was.

 

“Go back upstairs and change this moment,” my mom told me.  If her face got any redder it would pop like a zit.

 

“You guys stop.  I am a grown-ass woman, and there is nothing wrong with how I dress.” Maybe I overdid it, but I have a temper, something that I’m sure they never had seen before.

 

“As long as you’re living under MY ROOF,” Daddy started to yell, but I wasn’t going to listen to this bullshit anymore.  This crap had been pounded into my head for YEARS.  I’d had enough.

 

“I had my own place, I had a job that paid my bills, I paid my own tuition when the scholarships weren’t renewed, and I gave it all up. Because you asked me to!” I was nearly shouting at the end.  God, I couldn’t wait to escape. 

 

My dad looked down for a moment, suddenly realizing how far things had gone.  He just shook his head and walked back to the kitchen to finish whatever he was doing.  He usually caved in to Mom, and he probably thought that she was going to be the one to straighten things out with me.  Coward!

 

“You don’t speak to us like this in our house,” my mother hissed.  Oddly, I thought of the serpent in the Garden of Eden.  Had he sounded so angry?  Or was it more of a sinister, seductive voice?

 

“Then maybe I should go get my old job back.  The manager there really likes me,” I told her. I was half serious.  Without tuition payments, I could make a really decent living there. I knew this would drive her crazy, though. My mother had been warning me that in Vegas, especially in the casinos, those men were there to take advantage of women.  I hadn’t told her that the manager was gay, but he was handsome enough that she thought he was hitting on me all the time. 

“No, Caroline, that isn’t an option,” she told me, like I had no choice in the matter.

 

“Let me tell you something.” Oh no, I was really going to blow my top here. “I am sick of you trying to control my fucking life.  I quit my job and moved back home because you asked me to.  I kind of thought it was because your cancer was back.  At this point, I don’t care why you and Daddy wanted me back.  If I have to put up with bullshit like this every FUCKING TIME I WANT TO GO OUT, I’LL FUCKING MOVE RIGHT NOW!” I screamed at the end.  Mom winced, and I could hear Daddy hurrying from the kitchen.

 

“Calm down, Caroline.” My dad tried to sound firm, but his voice quivered.  I don’t think I’d ever yelled, let alone sworn in front of my parents, but I was on a rampage and I didn’t care.

 

“No, Daddy, I will not calm down.  I will not live under ‘your roof’ with those rules.  I am not a child.  I’ve proven I am an adult, and a responsible one at that.  If you two can’t accept that, then I’m out of here.” I stomped off to my room.

 

I was expecting something like this to happen; I hadn’t unloaded my suitcase a few days ago when I got here, and I’d left the majority of my apartment junk in my car.  The furniture had gone to the Goodwill, but I had enough little things to start over.  I had saved enough the past two years to make an escape for some time; I just never expected my mother to try to keep me under her thumb. 

 

I waltzed past my stunned parents, and out the front door.  I had already thrown my suitcase into the trunk of my Buick when Daddy came out.  Mom was standing in the front door, her face stormy, ready to erupt at any moment.

“Caroline, your mother’s sick, you know how she is,” he told me, trying to calm me down.

 

“I know how she is, Daddy, that’s why this will never work.  I never should have left Las Vegas.  I never should have given up my apartment, and I never should have left my job.  God, I had a life, and I gave it all up because you two asked me to—to move back here.  For what?  To be treated like I was in fifth grade again?”

 

“Your mother gets worked up because of the medicine she’s on...”

 

“You know what, Daddy?  I don’t care, I really don’t.  Not anymore.  I’m leaving, and you can’t say anything to stop me.”

 

“What if I don’t let you?” he asked, and I was stunned.

 

“Then I’ll run your ass over,” I told him. 

 

He blanched and I got in the car, slamming the door shut.  He reached for the handle but I’d already hit the lock.  He thought better of it and motioned for me to roll the window down.  I shook my head, but he put his hands together as if to beg or pray, so I cracked it an inch.

 

“Then go to the summer house,” he whispered.  “At least I’ll know you’re safe.  Let’s let everyone calm down and we’ll talk again.”

 

“OK, Daddy,” I told him before slamming on the gas, shooting my car in reverse.  He almost fell over backwards in surprise, and my heart soared.  I couldn’t believe I’d just done this.  There was no way the old Caroline Smith, religious freak of my graduating class, would ever have done it.  I put on some happy music, and started driving north, picking up I-15.  I was heading northeast into Utah.  The summer house was near Sand Hollow State Park.  I stopped for gas just once; the road started to calm my nerves as the sights slowly changed after I crossed the state line.

 

“Purple Haze” started jingling in my purse, and I pulled out my cell phone.  It was Janice.  Darn, I’d forgot to call her. I was so pissed.

 

“Janice, hi.”

 

“Everything OK, girl?  When I didn’t hear from you I called your house phone; I thought you took a nap.”

 

“Yeah, sorry about that.  Who yelled, Mom or Daddy?”

 

“Your mom is definitely, uhhh, not happy at the moment.  What happened?”

 

“She told me that my dress made me look like a slut.”

 

“No way, what did it look like?”

 

“Black, sleeveless, came down to mid-calf.  Just a summer dress, not the red bikini she made it out as.”

 

“She said you had left… Where are you headed?”

 

“Utah,” I told her quietly.

 

“What’s in Utah?”

 

“The summer house.  It’s by Sand Hollow.”

 

“Oh, is that the place your parents bought when we were in middle school?”

 

“Yeah.  I had to get out of there, I’m sorry I spaced and forgot to call you…”

 

“No worries, girl, I could hear your father in the background trying to calm your mother down.  She was so worked up I thought she was going to stroke out.”

 

“I almost wish she would have,” I told her quietly, feeling slightly guilty, because I meant it.

 

“Don’t you let this bother you too much, they’ll come around.”

 

“No, they won’t, you remember how they are.”

 

“Yeah… Yeah, I do.  Are you going to be OK?”

 

“Sure, I figure I’ll give them a couple of weeks to chew on the fact that I’m a grown woman.  If they don’t or won’t accept that, well, I’ve had enough of them controlling me.  I’ll move somewhere far away and forget to tell them how to get hold of me.”

 

“You’re angry; you wouldn’t say that if you weren’t so upset…”

 

“No, I’ve been planning on getting away from them for years.  I figured Mom’s cancer was back, that’s why I left Vegas. Now… I don’t care.  I can’t live like that anymore.”

 

“You want some company up there?” she asked me softly.  I realized that there was nothing more to say about the subject of my parents.

 

“No, for now I think I want some time alone.  I’ll find an Internet café, and start job hunting, maybe in a week or two,” I told her, hoping she wasn’t put off, but honestly, I didn’t want to be around anyone. 

 

I’d never lost my temper like that before, and I didn’t want to take it out on anybody else until I had time to decompress.

 

“That’s fine, hon, just stay in touch, OK?”

 

“I will, I just need some time away.”

 

“Ok, talk to ya later, babe.”

 

“Bye, Jan, thanks for understanding,” I told her as I hung up the phone.

 

BOOK: The Summer House
5.06Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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