A few days before prom, I was in my room on my computer when my mother barged into my room. I gave her a quizzical look. She had worry and guilt hidden in her eyes as she gazed at me. I could tell she was fighting with herself so I just spoke for her.
“Yes mom? Is something wrong?”
She left out an exasperated sigh and sat down on my bed.
“Raya,” She began. “come here.” Then she gestured for me to sit next to her. I obeyed her.
“There’s no easy way to say anything I’m about to tell you, so I’m just going to say all of it, okay?”
“Alright.” I said hesitantly, my voice going up an octave.
The way she began all of this was out of character for my mom. She normally would have talked to me outside with dad around. I honestly wonder why she didn’t.
“I got a new job, it’s in a new town though so that means we have to move. I start immediately, so you’re going to have to miss your prom.”
I remember a pit forming in my stomach as I semi-digested the news. Things were changing, and maybe they were for the best, but back then I didn’t think so.
“Moving? Miss prom?” I sputtered out. My voice went higher with each syllable. I stood up and paced my room. I wasn’t sure whether to cry or be mad so I became both.
“Raya, honey, I’m sorry!” Mom pleaded. She stood up and tried to come closer to me. I pushed her away and began yelling at her.
“No! Sorry’s not going to cut it! I can’t just uproot my life all of a sudden because you got a new job! I was looking forward to prom! You know no one would ever ask me to prom and to be asked by Dirk, who by the way already bought tickets, is so unfair. I already picked out my dress and everything.” I cried, tears ran down my cheeks profusely. I was on the floor and fetal position sucking up snot that threatened to escape my nostrils.
My mother stood there for a second in a state of shock, probably because I’d never raised my voice at her before, or any one for that matter. Her look of shock quickly turned to anger.
“Now listen here young lady, I know that things aren’t going your way right now but you’re going to have to grow up and deal with this like an adult.” She yelled.
“I don’t care to act like an adult! I’m a teenager who wants a life! I’m never going to have it if I move now!” I screamed back at her.
I had had enough. I got up from my spot and ran out of my room. Mom probably called after me but I was too mad to care. I let my feet carry me out of the house and down a very long road to Annabelle’s house.
I was so upset that I banged on her door, not caring if I was disturbing anyone. Luckily Annabell’s mom, Ms. Lee was up. She answered the door, very surprised to see me. I must have looked a hot mess to her. My eyes were probably puffy and my nose was most likely red from the rubbing. I had speed walked a good mile and half to get there so I was definitely out of breath.
Ms. Lee gave me a pitiful look and ushered me into her house. She called for Annie, who came down as quickly as she could. I told her everything that had happened and then some, like how I was happy for mom getting the job, but I didn’t want to leave. How I was afraid of leaving Annie behind and I didn’t want to lose you again.
The next day I didn’t go to school, as you probably don’t remember. Instead of going to see you, with my eyes all red and puffy I went home to do the inevitable, pack my things. I was still mad, too mad at my mom to apologize, but eventual things did come to that.
I couldn’t bring myself to call you or text you to let you know anything. I even ignored your texts hoping it would make it easier to forget me. I couldn’t bear to tell you I was leaving you dateless.
As I looked through all of my old things I heard I knock on my door. I inwardly groaned because I knew it was one or both of my parents, both of them I didn’t want to see. Without an answer my door creaked open.
“Raya.” A deep voice said. It was my dad. I was glad it wasn’t my mom or things might have gotten out of hand again.
“What?” I spat at him not looking up from the pile of scrapbooks I had of you, Annie and I as kids. I threw them into a box, for it was too painful to reminisce in the moment.
“Raya, we need to talk.” He said gently. He walked by me and sat down in my computer chair.
“Maybe, I don’t want to talk.” I whispered. I was half hoping he heard me, but I was also hoping he didn’t. I was about to be in enough trouble. I got up and started throwing the rest of my life into boxes.
Dad laughed. “Oh, I think you do. I’ve got something to tell you that might make your mood a little less sour. Your mom and I had a talk last night.”
“About what?” I asked. I was still packing but I moved slower to catch what he was about to say.
“About you and prom.”
At that, I stopped moving and gave him my full undivided attention.
He smiled wildly at me. “I knew that would pique your interest. So as I was saying, your mom and I were talking after you had your tantrum and stormed off to Annie’s house last night.”
“We think it wouldn’t be fair to you for you to miss prom. We know how you’ve been looking forward to this ever since Dirk asked you. Your mom talked to Annie’s mom last night and she’s agreed to take you in until the day after prom where I will pick you up and take you to our new house.” He finished.
“Oh my goodness! Dad! Thank you thank you thank you!” I exclaimed.
I ran into his arms and hugged him tightly. I was so happy I could have screamed. Things seemed to be turning around, until we pulled apart.
“Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, you’re grounded.”
“You heard me.” He said walking out the room. “One month and while you’re at Annie’s no hanging out with Dirk or going out with Annie or phone. We’ll know!” He yelled to me down the hallway.
I huffed. I didn’t think the punishment was all that fair considering I was moving to a new town and didn’t know anyone, but there was nothing I could have done about it. I continued packing, excitement filled me as I thought about how magical prom night was going to be.
Annabell was the only one who knew I was leaving. I knew you had known something was up with me by the way you stared at me, but every time I saw you I just couldn’t bring myself to tell you. I just made up excuses like I was tired or something like that to get you off my case. It was dumb and I should have just told you. Maybe we could have avoided a prom night turned sour.