Chapter Seven-Rhiannon (Part Four)

Chapter Seven-Rhiannon (Part Four)

A Chapter by Rachel Hanne

Johnny, Rhia, and Claire find themselves at the mall. Johnny sucks at buying people things.





            Mom's wrinkles were becoming more visible, and her cheeks were caving in. She had taken vacation days from work, and she was living off of carrots for food.

            "You need to eat something else," I told her. "You look awful." She sat up on the sofa, newspaper falling to the floor. She picked up her coffee, and took a long drink.

            "I'm worried about you more than me. I'm so sorry you have to see me like this. I'll be fine though, I promise you that."

            "You won't be fine, not if you only live off carrots." I retorted.

            "Well I could live off of potatoes. Did you know if you just eat potatoes for the rest of your life you will live function normally? It's because of all the nutrients in them." The subject change didn't surprise me.

            "No, I didn't."

Mom put the coffee cup down, and flipped through the channels on the boxy television.

            "They don't teach you that in school?" She asked in confusion. "Oh well. I always ate potatoes as a kid. All my life...potatoes."  She said wearily. I wanted to snort, but I held it in.

            "You're sleep deprived...or something." I told her.

            "Probably. I can't sleep. The fan in my room creaks all the time. I'm afraid one of the blades will fly off." The fan had been broken for a long time. It wasn't a new problem.

            "Go get a new fan." I suggested. She looked at me like I was crazy, with an eyebrow raised and mouth partially opened.

            "You know I don't have the spare money for that. You have money, why don't you buy one?" My heart rate quickened. Anything I had, I gave to Barry.

            "I kind of...misplaced it." Mom turned her full body towards me.

            "Lost it?" She asked. I nodded quickly. Mom shook her head and went back to the TV.

            "Well that's your fault. Must've gotten that from me, I always had bad luck with money. It'd get stuck in vending machines, fall into the vent...get sucked up by a fan..." She trailed off. "Oh well. It happens to the best of us I guess."

           The house was a mess. Clothes made their way into the hall, and random pieces of trash laid on the floor, stuck in the shag carpeting. I cleaned all of it up, with "Leave it to Beaver" as my background noise and entertainment. I tidied up all of the clothes, and put them back into their original location.  Seeing the house a mess made me cringe, and it was hardly ever common with someone like mom.  She taught me how to clean the entire house when I was seven years old, and made me clean the house when she was running errands.  Her room was decorated with a heavy mass floral wallpaper, and wicker furniture. Small souvenirs and trinket boxes were on her dresser, along with an antique mirror in the center. My room was spotless, with a small end table next to my bed, and a closet filled with clothes for all seasons. Instead of wallpaper, I had a light pink room that matched the color of my bed. Wood paneling went to the middle of the wall, and in my opinion, it was really bad looking in my room. My mom liked it, so she got it installed.  I had a pin board filled with many pictures next to my bed, and I looked at them nearly everyday. Some of them were matching the pink walls because of the acidic photo album sleeves they used to be in, but they were still valuable to me. I had some that were with dad, mom, me and bobby, and some with Claire, and other friends from the past.  I hated how the friends from my past were still the people I saw everyday.

            I continued cleaning up  until I heard the phone ring. I raced to the phone on my end table, and answered quickly and huffing,

            "Hello?" Shuffling noises were made in the background, along with two people yelling at each other. "Hello?" I asked again with irritation.

            "Hey, Rhia! Get me out of here, the parents are fighting." Claire whispered.

            "And this is news?"

            "No," She laughed. "Look, I'm sorry...very sorry about what happened. I'm an awful friend."

            "No, no your not, I didn't tell you."

            "Well, I should have heard about it from somewhere at least." She probably did, but she probably wasn't smart enough to make any connections to me.

            "It doesn't matter," I sighed in frustration. "What's done is done."

            "I know, but I wish I could make it up to you..." Claire replied with sympathy. "How about we go shopping? Johnny's coming to pick me up in a few minutes. I'm sure he'll give you a lift too. My birthday's next week, so he's going to pick out my birthday present."  I thought a moment.

            "Yeah I'll go shopping with you."

            "Yay!" She squealed. "I can't wait to get out of this house. See you in a bit." I hung up a few seconds after she did, and went to grab a brush to fix my hair. Looking into the bathroom mirror, I carefully applied eyeliner and all makeup essentials to make myself look at least a rating of satisfactory. Maybe I'd run into Darin? With that thought in mind, I made every hair on my head in place, and everything I applied to my face balanced and fresh. My stomach did little flips for him again, and I smiled. A real smile.  I grabbed my bag, and marched to the front room. Mom looked at me weird.

            "Well don't you look nice! Got a date?"

            "No, Claire and Jonathan are coming to pick me up and go to the mall."

            "Jonathan Bale?" Her face went to disgust. "He's no looker. I don't know how such a lively girl like Claire could end up with a stick in the mud like him."

            "Beats me," I shrugged. "Not my problem."

            "It will be once they break up." Mom laughed. "Never mind.  Go have fun."

            "Bye." I nodded. Walking out the door, the first thing in front of me was a shiny teal Firebird. I assumed it was Johnny's. He always had a new car to show off to everyone, and did so arrogantly. Claire was in the passenger seat, and ran to greet me with curls bouncing left and right.

            "Oh my gosh isn't Johnny's new car great? You'll have to crawl through the back seat though" She bit her lip and looked at me nervously. "Sorry. It might be a bit uncomfortable."

            "It's fine, don't worry about it." I followed her back to the car, and the dirt beneath me got into my sandals, making my toes brittle and irritated. Claire opened the door again for me, and pushed the passenger seat forward to the dashboard so I could fit in the back. I crawled in, and hit my head on the ceiling, and sat with a huff. Music was blaring, and Johnny was singing as loud as the radio. Claire pushed the seat back to its original position and closed the door.         

            "Johnny you know you can't sing, so I don't see why you still try." Claire laughed.

            "I do what I want, haven't you learned that by now?"

            "I was just messing with you."

            "Well you gotta make that more obvious you know?"


            Johnny revved the engine, and sped down the road. Claire held onto the back of her seat for life.

            "You better slow down Johnny. I think cops come around here at this time." He ignored her, and kept on speeding.  "I give up." I heard her mumble.

            We arrived at the mall in five minutes in what would usually take anyone else about ten minutes. Johnny didn't seem like he cared at all in that duration of time for our lives, except for how he appeared to everybody else. I saw him flashing smiles at random people, and waving out the window, and flicking his cigarette bud. Which to me was pretty stupid, considering how he practically worshipped his vehicles. The ashes of the cigarettes were sure to damage the car. I guess his brain only did one thing of importance at a time. He stomped on the cigarette before entering the mall, almost like he was angry.

            "Let's get this over with. Your birthdays next week right?" He asked.

            "Yes, on Wednesday. You can get my gift today, wrap it and give it to me at school or something." Claire responded in her cutesy tone. Johnny looked irritated.

            "I'll just give it to you today."

            "Why?" Claire looked confused, and so was I.

            "I'm not a romantic, you know that. I'm practical."
If you're practical, I wanted to say, then you would know that in a relationship, something like this is supposed to be for a special occasion. It's not practical that he's being, it's pure relationship stupidity.  Then he hugged her. "But I am nice.". Claire's lips formed a smile.

            "Let's go to...Lance's. You know that place with lots of jewelry and stuff."

            "Easy enough, let's go." "Easy enough, let's go." I followed closely behind them, people watching. One old lady was nodding herself to sleep with a small dog in a bag next to her, and an old man holding tons of bags was about to fall over. The mall was the same as it always was. Lights beneath the windows for a preview of what was going to be in each of the stores.  This however could make it hard to judge, because occasionally a mannequin could look atrocious,  even though there was an adorable outfit right behind it on a rack that would be much more appealing.  I couldn't understand why the employees  didn't have a better idea of taste in fashion.  It annoyed me and made me hot with frustrations from head to toe.

            "Look at that ugly shirt!" I said stopping, pointing at a sleeveless avocado green and rusty orange button up shirt on display. Claire halted, and nearly had her arm ripped off by Johnny's aggressive impatience. Her face alternated from giddy to disgust at the sight of the wretched blouse.

            "Ugh, who would wear that thing?" I shrugged at her.

            "Beats me." 

            "Maybe it's the gold button up stud things."

            "Nah, the color combination." I said.

            "Yeah, it's pretty much in almost everything. Anyway moving along..."  The buzz of chattering distracted my senses as I eavesdropped on strangers'  conversations. I'd do that sometimes. I found out interesting things. Like, someone was opening up a business, or someone could be getting married. Just little things. Sometimes those little things made me smile, like a husband and wife arguing over a piece of merchandise, on  whether it was needed or not. Of course we ignored the pleading salesmen at the kiosk's, like they were some kind of inanimate object. "I would hate to have that job. I'd feel so annoying, I would annoy myself." Claire stated, pulling me into Lance's still hand in hand with Johnny. Sparkling  diamonds  and jewels of various colors  shined up at us proudly, showing off their worth, begging to be purchased.  Claire's blue eyes went wide at what she saw before her, and they sparkled in reflection of the diamonds behind the glass case. "There are so many...Rhia, you got to help me."  I started to go through each of the jewels in search of what I thought would be of Claire's approval. Venturing off from my given task, I looked for myself. What I would want to be given to me...what I would want Darin to give me.  A bright turquoise colored pendant caught a hold of my sight.

            "What about this one?" I suggested with enthusiasm. Claire briskly walked next to me to observe the beauty of the unique jewel. She gasped pointing down at the glass, rotating her head as her blond curls hit my face.

            "Johnny! I really like this one! It's gorgeous!" Johnny walked wearily towards us, and laughed after he saw the price tag attached to it.

            "$40.00? Keep dreaming." Claire's smile fell at his words, forming a tight line.

            "I-I guess I didn't see..." Johnny stood still, hand in his pockets, thumbs protracted out.

            "All the jewelry in here is out of my price range. How about somewhere else? You like bookstores don't you?" He asked. "Just get a book.  Cheaper for me, and beneficial for you."  Claire's expression didn't alter.  She turned on her heel, exiting Lance's in a huff, face down.  Johnny  mumbled, and sprinted to catch up with his girlfriend, grabbing her hand. I followed behind them feeling uncomfortable, and resentment towards Johnny.  Upon our arrival in the small bookstore and coffee joint, the spectacled store clerk  showed irritation as she buttoned up her sweater vest, blowing a strand of hair from her sagging face.

            "All things fifty percent off. Store's closing soon." She licked her thumb, opening the latest National Inquirer. "Better get what you want now."  Johnny let go of Claire's hand,  and wandered off to the "gory book section." Claire heaved a sigh, and went in the opposite direction to the cheap jewelry rack just before the coffee tables.  She toyed with the hanging necklaces, spinning the rack around repetitively.

            "What's wrong?" I asked with concern. Claire sighed once again.

            "Nothing, I'm fine."  Three uniform attired boys sitting down at a round table about twenty feet from us caught my attention.  The one sitting in the middle was messing with his pencil, glancing continuously at a girl at another table with a coffee in hand, and attention was enthralled in a book in another.

            "What are you going to do?" The one on the right asked, predicting his friend had some kind of plan.  The middle boy laughed.

            "What if I threw this pencil at her?"

            "That'll catch her attention." The one on the right put in.

            "But there's sharp lead on it." The left one took the pencil from his friend, and dug the lead down with enough pressure for it to break, and handed it back. The middle boy was hesitant to throw the pencil at the girl, and nearly set it back down.

            "Hurry up!"

            "Not like she'll be mad at you." The boy raised his arm up again, and extended it forward, pencil let got out into the air, soaring across two tables, and at last it collided into the girls small framed glasses knocking them off onto the floor. The heart shaped faced girl stood in a huff, putting down her book in anger. She bent down to grab her glasses and the pencil. Eyes on her rear, the boys whispered to one another, with small chuckles every few words, smiles wide and dimpled.  The girl shot a piqued glare. The boys' laughter paused, faces turning from vibrant red to exceptionally pale. The middle boy's mouth slowly curved a nervous smile, hand waving to the girl.

            "H-Hi Samantha. Can I have, can I have my pencil back?"  Samantha combatively snatched up her book, and stormed off behind the coffee counter.

            "Get up." I heard her demand to no one in my range of sight. "I don't care, get up. We're going home." The black figure queerly stood up right, back straight. I almost gasped out loud at the realization of who the figure was. It was Harry Coy. The kid who frightened me in detention. Harry caught me staring at him, and he abruptly  looked down at the floor. I assumed Samantha was his sister.  She groaned, and yanked his arm, stomping out the door to the outside of the mall.

            "I hope she paid for that book..." the boy in the middle said. His friends began laughing.

            "You're girl's a crook."

            "No she's not." He growled, standing up. He walked to the front counter, thumbing through his black leather wallet, with the clerk staring at him behind his glasses maliciously. "That girl, Samantha... she forgot to pay for her book. I know her." The clerk rolled her eyes, and took the money from the boy.

            "Maybe if you cut that long greasy hair you'd have her." She retorted with a sneer, accompanied by shrill laughs made by his friends. Johnny was suddenly beside us, with his own book in hand.

            "Pick something?" He questioned. Claire shook her head.

            "Choose one of these for me." She demanded, showing him the multiple necklaces. "I don't care which one."

            "Hmm..." Johnny picked a heart shaped necklace, not to my surprise. It was cliché, but nice.

            "Alright, let's get out of this stuffy place." Claire lead us to the front counter, and Johnny handed the clerk the small necklace. She  snorted with an eyebrow raised high.

            "Sure you want this kid?"

            "Well, yeah..." Claire confirmed,  confused at the clerks inquiry. She scoffed, throwing the cheap necklace into a bag.

            "Okay then. That'll be $8.50." Johnny gave her the cash, and exchanged it for the bagged necklace to give to Claire.

            "Thanks." She mumbled with a small smile. Putting his wallet into his back pocket, he leaned down, and kissed her on the cheek.

            "You're welcome." I wanted to throw up.

            The ride to my house was silent, with only the sound of the stick-shift changing the duty of the car. Claire asked me before I stepped out onto my property,

            "Can I stay at your house tonight?"  A little shocked and put on the spot at her sudden question I replied still with a yes. The Firebird hummed away as we stepped over the ottoman into my warm home.

            "Hi hon-" Mom stopped short in mid sentence at the sight of Claire. "Oh, hello Claire. how are you?"

            "I am fine, thank you. Just got my birthday present from Johnny at the mall. There weren't too many people there, thank goodness."  Mom shot up from her sitting position.

            "Let me see!" Claire fished through her bag, and handed mom the silver necklace.  Mom squinted her eyes, and they moved from left to right. "What's it say here on the inscription..." Mom trailed off, and  her mouth slowly fell agape. "Um..."

            "What? What's wrong?" Claire freaked.

            "Is it supposed to say this?" Claire walked with anticipation, standing beside her, covering her lips at the sight before her on the heart,  muffling a high squeak of laughter."Someone Special Calls Me Granny. Oh my God. I can't believe...I can't believe I'm reading this." Mom laughed with her, shaking her head.

           "I will go take it back for you, you shouldn't be embarrassed like that. I will exchange it for a similar one. Boys!"

© 2013 Rachel Hanne

Author's Note

Rachel Hanne
Good, bad, the ugly :)

My Review

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Excellent ending to this chapter! You are definitely a talented story writer... I am loving your ability to describe vivid scenes and really bring your characters to life. Well done so far Rachel :)

Posted 11 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Rachel Hanne

11 Years Ago

Thank you CreativeStroke! took me a while to make this chapter, glad you are enjoying it!
XD I loved the ending!! Nice chapter. (; Send me the next chapter when you finish it!! :D I love this book. ^_^


Posted 11 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Rachel Hanne

11 Years Ago

thank you, I am so happy you like it, it means so much to me!! :)

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2 Reviews
Added on January 19, 2013
Last Updated on January 19, 2013
Tags: we, are, the, confound, teen, literature, rhiannon, part, four, mall, jewelry


Rachel Hanne
Rachel Hanne

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