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C6 Meet Nana

Amelia Forbes

I waved briefly before turning away from him and heading up the front porch. When I stopped to look back, his car was gone.

I turned back toward the house and began my ascent up the stairs. Getting to the door, my feet standing on the old mat that said 'Welcome!' in bold letters, I took out my key from my backpack and unlocked the door. I and my Nana had separate keys for the house. Whenever I was in and she wasn't, I was supposed to lock the door from inside. The same went for her whenever I wasn't in.

I closed the door behind me and locked it, leaving the key in its hole.

During my first months of living with Nana, whenever I came back from school, the first thing I'd yell was, "Nana, I'm home!", always forgetting that she was deaf and couldn't hear me. I began to adjust to her being deaf though, and now, I couldn't make that mistake again.

She wasn't in the living room when I walked in, so I headed on into the kitchen, where she was most likely to be. On getting there, I saw her sitting at the edge of the kitchen table, kneading a dress, her favorite pastime.

She looked up from the cloth in her hands as soon as I walked into the kitchen.

Hi, Nana, I communicated through sign language, walking over to her to give her a kiss on her smooth, wrinkled forehead. Although Nana was already seventy, she was still very agile, which was pretty much the reason I was sent to live with her instead of being sent to some crappy foster home. Thankfully.

Hi, sweetie, she gestured when I pulled back. How was your day?

Stressful. I drew back the seat beside her and fell into it, holding my head in my hands. Jason was being an asshole again.

Yeah, she knew about Jason. It was hard for her not to find out, judging by the fact that most times, I came home from his bullying with a tear stained face.

What did he do this time? She wanted to know.

Leaning back, I unbuttoned Adrian's jacket and faced her so she could see the stain on my shirt.

He's basically the reason for this, I communicated.

I think I should come to your school one of these days. Give Jason a piece of my mind, she frowned.

No, I shook my head. It's fine.

So, whose jacket is that? She asked after a short while of silence. I don't think it's yours.

No, it's not. A friend of Jason gave it to me to cover up the stain, I answered.

A friend of Jason's, she raised her grey eyebrows.

You don't have to worry. He's really nice and very different from Jason. He offers me a ride home on many occasions.

Okay, Nana shrugged. If you say so.

Yeah, I nodded, pushing back my seat and standing up. I had Jason's homework to do and his previous history one to look through, like he'd told me to just before he went home, and certify why he'd gotten a B, saying, "I can't have my machine malfunctioning now, can I?" as he walked away from me.

I gave Nana one more kiss on her cheek, this time asking her what we were having for dinner-I was looking forward to one of her wholesome meals. Telling me we were having chicken casserole made my stomach rumble in anticipation.

Picking up my backpack, I headed upstairs to my room. I opened the door and stepped into the small space I owned to myself, with it's small bed, definitely not anything close to queen sized, small dresser and closet.

I plopped down on the bed and pulled my backpack onto my lap. Getting out Jason's current homework as well as his previous history paper, I stared at them. Many times, I'd wanted to rip his homework all up and toss it into the trash can. Many times, I'd wished so bad that I could, but, just like me wishing Jason would stop bullying me, it was a dumb wish.

Sighing, I got out my own history homework, in which I'd gotten an A, and began comparing his with mine, word for word, trying to figure out what went wrong.

I noticed some errors on his paper. For one, I'd written the wrong spelling of a word. Secondly, I saw a question where I'd written an entirely offkey answer. I slapped my forehead, just realizing why it was this way. I was literally asleep while I was doing Jason's history homework.

Shaking my head at the mistake for which I was both thumped and regarded as a machine, I set his history homework aside.

Let bygones be bygones, I said in my mind.

Kicking off my shoes and shrugging off Adrian's jacket, I changed out of my school wear into a large t-shirt-it used to be my dad's-and denim shorts. Then I gathered my stained clothing and Adrian's jacket and went down to the laundry room to wash them.

I put them inside the laundry machine, scented the water with some lavender oil I found in Nana's room and then set the timer.

All the while I waited for the clothes to be done, my mind worked on, much to my distaste, moving from one issue to another and finally settling on Jason. And Kimberly.

How was I to avoid them if they kept bumping into me at school, or finding a way to do that. And, once again, Kimberly had thrown a bowl at me, knowing it could injure me badly. Things were starting to get physical the more I looked at it. Even the way Jason spoke to me today seemed as if he was just about to beat me up.

I sighed. If things went on the way they did, I was most likely to end up in the clinic anytime soon.

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