A/N: I don’t want anyone to get confused, so please let me explain. I’ve bounced Jack’s age back to seventeen and Alex’s age to eighteen. Jack still lives with his parents, and he has a younger sister. Also, Alex is NOT featured in this chapter. This chapter is basically focused on Jack’s POV and getting to know his family and whats going on in his life at the moment. He meets Alex in chapter two. Also, I’ll post a ‘preview’ of the next chapter at the end of this one, just to give you a little taste of whats to come.
Here is the list of characters who will be featured in this chapter and the faces I’ve paired them to:
jack barakat; (himself.)
barbara hershey; (jack’s mom.)
hayley williams; (jack’s younger sister.)
george clooney; (jack’s dad.)
rian dawson; (jack’s bestfriend.)
zack merrick; (jack’s bestfriend.)
/with a cameo appearance by two men and a truck.
enjoy the chapter!
There was a room. The room that had once been my own but is now only turning into throbbing memories. As I sat here on the cold, empty mattress that lay in the middle of the floor, I thought about this room and what had gone on throughout my childhood and teenage life. You see, ever since my dad got a job promotion, he’s been rambling nonstop about how much traveling is going to be involved for him, the rest of my family, and I. Traveling means moving, moving means new state, and new state means a whole new life. A new town, a new home, new school, a new everything.
“Honey, are you in here?” I heard my mom call out from behind the door leading into the room I was in, followed by a few knocks on the wooden frame.
I really wish she’d stop calling me babynames, like ‘Honey’ for example. I’m seventeen for crying out loud. Practically a grown man.
While rolling my eyes I silently responded.
As I watched her slowly creep through the doorway, I felt a clinch in my stomach. I hated the moments like this. The moments when she wanted to talk, especially just me alone because I’ve never been too fond of one-on-one conversations and I’m usually a shy person.
“About ready to go? Dad said we can make a reststop mid-way there and get something to eat..”
“Uhm, isn’t that normally what people do on roadtrips, anyway?”
She gently shrugged while she sat down beside me on the empty-looking, white mattress. “Sometimes, I assume.”
I didn’t really know what to say so I just snubbed her response and turned my head towards the window. There were no blinds anymore, nor curtains. There was only beaming sunlight making it’s gigantic mark on the wooden floor and a tree’s shadow reflecting inside.
“Sweetie, I know you’re upset about the move, but..”
“Upset? Really? Thats what you think I am? JUST upset?” I blurted out as to cutting off her sentence.
“Jack, don’t get an attitude with me. I just wanted to talk about..”
“Theres nothing to talk about!” I said as I interrupted her again. “Dad gets a highclass job, and is forced to travel. He can’t just go alone. He has to drag the whole family with him.”
“Jack you know your father loves us. He wants to keep us safe. He would rather us go with him. Wouldn’t you rather want that than he be one of those dads who hardly ever sees his family because of work?”
“Yeah, mom. I understand that, okay? It’s nice that he wants to be around, but what about my friends? What about Rian and Zack? Do you understand how hard it would be for me to adapt into a new school? With new people? And what about Hayley, huh? What about her? This is crazy. Forgive me if you think I’m being selfish, but to my look on the situation, this isn’t fair.”
My mom sighed as she stood up and gently straightened the wrinkles from her clothes.
“I don’t think you need to speak for Hayley, Jack. Also, I’m sorry this is so hard on you, but it’s something we have to do. We’re a family. We’re going to stick together, and we’re going to follow eachother wherever we need to go.”
I watched her glance down at her feet then back up at me.
“We’re all just about ready to leave. I think you should come downstairs, soon.”
And after that last comment, she was gone. She was heading down the stairs, out of my sight.
After the next few minutes, I decided to go ahead and make my way downstairs. I took each step down, very slowly and carefully. I didn’t want to hurry. After all, this had been my house since I was literally eight years old. Leaving it behind felt like someone was stabbing a big hole into my heart.
Once I reached the bottom step, I looked around. Everything was bare, as to the movers had packed every single ounce of furniture and boxes up in the moving van. The front door was wide open and as I walked closer to it, I could see my parents, my younger sister, and my two bestfriends all gathered around in the yard and on the sidewalk. I assumed that they were all waiting for me.
As I was walking across the lawn, my mother turned from her conversation with my dad and the movers. She was opening an arm as to pull me in and to give me that ‘motherly’ pat on the back or a slight rub, but I just ignored her and headed towards the direction my bestfriends, Rian and Zack, were standing in.
The expressions on their faces looked close to numb, but I could still see a slight bit of sadness. Something I’d usually call a bitter-sweet emotion.
“Hey, guys.” I said softly, as I forced a little smile out the creases of my lips.
Zack placed his hand on my shoulder and gave me a slight pat.
“How’re you holding up, man?”
I just shrugged as to knowing I could usually babble up a storm, but this was goodbye. I mean, atleast for awhile. I didn’t want to ruin the moment by running my mouth.
“I’m alright, I guess. I think I’ll have to get used to this.”
He nodded as his gaze turned from mine and towards Rian, who was standing next to him with his arms crossed and a stern look upon his face.
“We’ll miss you.” Rian said before he unfolded his arms and pulled me into a hug.
If you’d known Rian as long as I have, you’d know that he has a sweet personality. The guy is practically like a huge, loveable, teddybear. Hard to believe, right? Yeah, I thought the same thing atfirst. He has the body figure and look of a very manly, tough guy. but on the inside he’s nothing close.
I released a ‘huff’ sound from underneath my breath when he finally let me go, and then all three of us just stood there for a few seconds and looked at eachother.
“I’ll miss you too. Both of you…” I said quietly.
I never liked goodbyes, or anything sappy for that matter. For example, when Hayley, my sister, is home on weekend nights and shes bored, she usually tends to ask me to watch a move with her. She always picks out one of those shitty Nicholas Sparks movies. Her favorite is ‘Dear John’, which I absolutely despise. I hate stuff like that.
Out the corner of my eye I could see my dad walking towards us. He’s one of those dads who tried too hard to act like the coolest old man ever, when he really isn’t anything near that.
“Hey, guys.” he said with a kind of smirk upon his face.
“You about ready, Jack?” he said as he placed a hand against my shoulder and I looked up at him with a slight nod.
I didn’t really know how to spit goodbye out of my mouth. It was so hard. Mainly because I’ve never had to do it before, or atleast not like this.
I felt like an idiot when I looked back at my two bestfriends and just gave them a little wave as I started to walk back across the lawn and to the car with my dad. I should of said more. I should of been able to spit it out.
A few minutes later, I had already gotten in the car. I was sitting on my side, which was always the right side, behind my mom. I always felt awkward having to sit on the left which was behind my dad, because everytime he looked in the overhead mirror, I always seemed to know and it always felt like he was looking at me.
I began to situate myself in my seat. I was making sure I had everything I needed, as I never enjoyed long car rides. I always had to have some form of entertainment. I looked around and ran though a list of things in my head. Laptop? Check. Phone? Check. iPod? Check. Everything was here and everything was in place.
When everyone started to get in the car, I slid my raybands over my eyes and I tucked my earbuds into my ears and I looked out the window. I just wanted to close my eyes and drift away and listen to my music the entire time. I wanted to do anything I could just to relax myself for a few hours, as to this whole moving thing has been all I’ve been thinking about for the past month.
Not only seconds after I had started to calm down, Hayley looks my way and yanks one of my earbuds out. “Hey, can I watch a movie on your laptop?”
I rolled my eyes in disgust because I was interrupted. Don’t get me wrong, I love my sister and I would do anything for her, but sometimes she can be an annoying little twat. Especially times like this, when I just want to chill.
I responded with a nod. “Yeah, whatever.”
“Okay, cool.” she said as she reached for my laptop and opened it, getting everything situated in her lap.
I let out a small sigh underneath my breath as I leaned my head back against the seat, and the car began to back out of the small driveway and onto the road.
“Baltimore, here we come!” my dad said anxiously. Another one of his ‘I think I’m the coolest’ schemes.
Everyone else seemed to be excited about Baltimore, but I wasn’t. It was no special place to me. No new beginning. It’d be more like prison, or hell, or something in that category.
I shook my head at my dads comment and tucked the earbud Hayley had messed with back in my ear. I then let my body sink lower into the seat, and I eventually fell into a light sleep, dreading the trip.
(A SHORT PREVIEW OF CHAPTER TWO.)
After the teacher had finished complaining about Alex’s late appearance, he turned away and started to walk towards the back of the classroom.
God damn, he was something. I studied his motions, his features, the way his skinnyjeans fit perfectly around his hips, the way his vneck fit perfectly in place against his chest.
I never was big on sexuality. I believe love is love, and if anyone ever asked me, I’d say I’m a really strong pan-sexual, but this was so strange. This feeling welling up in the pit of my stomach. I’ve never had this feeling before, and especially not for a male.
Please give me some feedback, guys! I need to know if I should finish writing the next few chapters or not!