Silence, p.37

Silence, page 37

 part  #1 of  Silence Series

 

Silence



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  ***

  Two hours later, I was dressed for the party. My nerves grew with every step I took downstairs until I thought I was going to explode. I was thankful that Cole, Kerry and Ben would be with me. At least I could spend the evening with them and ignore everyone else.

  People had come to see what my life was like, what my family were like. None of them wanted to celebrate my birthday.

  Some of my family had already arrived and were standing around drinking and chatting. My grandparents from both sides of the family sat on the sofa with overflowing wine glasses. I didn’t see Dad’s parents often; they lived quite far away so they only visited on birthdays and at Christmas.

  How would they react if they found out what he really was?

  They won’t believe you, either.

  The doorbell rang, and I took a deep breath, taking a peek at Cole to stop myself freaking out. He smiled and mouthed, ‘Love you’ which made me forget everything and everyone.

  “Happy Birthday, Oakley,” Julian shouted from across the room, throwing his arms out like an idiot.

  Cole glared, and if looks could kill, Julian would’ve been a goner by now. There was no need for him to be here, the guy hated me? It made no sense.

  I smiled through distaste, and Cole tugged me into the kitchen.

  I can do this. By midnight, it’ll be winding down and everyone going home.

  Rolling my eyes as I looked around, I shook my head. The whole house was covered in decorations. Pink decorations. You could barely move around all the balloons, banners, streamers, and enormous pink feathers. Yeah, feathers. What was I, eight? It was probably what Mum wanted for her sixteenth.

  My mouth dropped open in shock as I saw what was on the kitchen counter. What on earth? Blinking in disbelief, I stepped closer to the giant ice sculpture. It was of a girl doing a cartwheel. Me doing a cartwheel.

  She’s really lost it.

  “Honey, here.” Mum gave me a plastic cup of punch and one to Cole, too. Forcing my lips to twitch in a brief smile, I turned, pretending to look at something different so she wouldn’t see how much I hated all of it. She still saw me as a little girl.

  Just a few hours. For her, I reasoned with myself, again.

  “Well, this is all very pink,” Cole commented, stating the bloody obvious. “She knows your favourite colour is yellow, right?” Of course, he knew that. “Come on, I need some vodka in this before I hang myself.”

  As we made a move, Kerry hopped in front of me and laughed as I jumped. “Sorry. Happy birthday! This party’s awesome, by the way.”

  Is it, though?

  “I’m guessing you like pink,” Ben said sarcastically and threw his arm over Cole’s shoulder.

  I stared at him flatly. Nope.

  “She doesn’t like pink. Her mum organised everything,” Cole explained.

  “Ah. Ouch.” Ben winced in sympathy.

  Kerry waved her hand. “Don’t worry, Oakley, you have us to save you now.” She pulled me into the living room. Her grip was tight, and she strode confidently through the small crowd that had gathered by the doorway.

  “Sit,” she ordered, pointing to the smaller sofa that had been pushed into the corner of the room. Cole and Ben joined us, both sitting on the arms of the chair.

  “This is our corner. If anyone tries to take it, kill. Okay?” Kerry looked at us sternly. I grinned in amusement and sat back in the sofa. Maybe this party won’t be too bad after all. Or maybe those are famous last words.

  We settled into conversation and managed to have a good time. Cole and Ben bickered like an old married couple which was providing most of the entertainment. I wasn’t even required to socialise with others much. Family were happy to catch up with family and leave me to blend into the background.

  Occasionally, I saw Mum chatting happily and laughing with Ali and Nan. That was why I put up with the stupid party. She’s smiling and it’s genuine. She deserves this.

  Jasper knelt down in front of me and leered towards someone. I thought he had gone out for the evening, but of course he’d want to be around lots of girls.

  “The blonde girl over there,” he said, gesturing towards Jennifer from my class. “She over sixteen?” I nodded, and Jasper rubbed his hands together. “Legal. Fair game.” He made it sound like a joke, but we both knew he wasn’t kidding.

  Suddenly, I caught sight of Julian dancing with Lizzie. I noticed how he’d move her closer to where we were sitting until they ended up right in front of us. I didn’t know how Lizzie could even touch him. With a sick feeling in my stomach, I turned back to Cole and our friends.

  “She’s not pregnant, dipshit, she’s just put on weight,” Kerry said, looking at someone in the room.

  Okay, what have I missed?

 
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