It was destiny that brought Michael and I together, destiny and nothing else. The complicated chain of events that occurred couldn’t possibly be described in any other way. I remember all of it so clearly, because if there is one thing I have learned in the 16 years of my life, it is that memories are the only thing you can truly hold onto forever.
“Dad, I feel sick,” I muttered from the back of his 2010 cherry red Mustang, “We need to stop so I can get some air.” He pulled the car over and I evacuated as quickly as possible. I quickly walked out of site and sitting down behind the nearest building I began to cry.
As I sat there crying I allowed my emotions to take over full force. For the next 10 minutes I bawled like a little three year old child who had just been told he couldn’t have the toy he wanted. It felt so good letting it all out. I had never been one to cry when the going got tough but right now I didn’t care.
As I was finally starting to pull myself together I felt a hand on my shoulder. Turning, I found my brother younger Jack standing there. “Brooklyn,” he whispered, “Dad’s ready to leave now.” I wiped my eyes and followed Jack to the car. I rode in silence the rest of the way to Chicago.
I hadn’t asked for this to happen; It was the last thing I ever would have wished for. Still, it had, and as I would come to realize, fate will have its way no matter what you do to prevent it.
Aspen had always been the place I called home. Now, as I was settling into my room in our new Chicago Mansion I felt hopeless. How could I ever call this place home. The constant roar of traffic, the polluted air, the crime, as far as I was concerned this city would never be a part of me. The day I turned 18, I was heading straight back to the beautiful Colorado mountains to be with my life-long friends.
As I was unpacking I came across my yearbook. I flipped to our sophomore class section. There was one picture that I loved. It was of my two best friends and I. During homecoming week we had had themed days. Wednesday had been crazy tourist day. We all wore huge old school cameras around our necks and dressed the part well. I stood in the middle and Kaity and Ang had their arms flung around me. All of us were smiling directly at the photographer. What stuck on my head the most about that day though was listening to Ang talk about how she had always wanted to travel more but her family couldn’t afford it. Unlike the rest of us Ang was the daughter of a migrant worker. Her mom cleaned houses for a living. It had never bothered her to hang out with Kaity and I though, the financial differences in our families never fazed her a bit.
Now, looking back I would gladly trade lives with her. Sure, moving across the country wasn’t necessarily traveling, but it was closer than she generally got. In a heartbeat I would give up my family’s money to go back to Aspen. I had made up my mind that I was going to hate Chicago and had blatantly ignored my father’s pleas to give it a chance.
Which room was his? After an hour of unpacking I decided to go talk to my brother. He was the only person in my family who I wanted to see, the only one who ever really seemed to understand me. He may have been two full years younger than me, but it was he whom I told everything. Alison would try to talk to me but I had lost my respect for her long ago.
Jack’s door was standing wide open. He was hanging a poster of Wes Welker, his hero, on the wall. “Hey Brooklyn” he said still focusing on hanging the poster, “does this look even to you.”
“Yeah bro it looks fine.” Jack jumped down off of the chair he had been standing on and stepped back to analyze it. “Damn it looks perfect,” he exclaimed, “straightest damn poster I’ve ever hung.” He had an obsession. He couldn’t stand when things looked disorganized and to him a slightly crooked poster looked just that way.
“You can go hang mine if you want.” It was more of a request than a question.
“Brooklyn, I spent the last 20 minutes trying to get that straight, You’re on your own.” I laughed, actually laughed for the first time since we’d left Aspen 3 days ago. “I’m going outside to look around,” he said “do you want to come?”
There was no way in hell I was staying trapped in a house with three Chicago enthusiasts while Jack was out. Like me he hadn’t wanted to come at all, unlike me he was trying to make the best of it. “Let me grab a jacket,” I sighed, “I’ll meet you downstairs.”
Jack and I had been walking for about 30 minutes before we came across any businesses. Everything so far had been residential, now I could see a street filled with restaurants, bars, and endless shopping options. I could imagine myself enjoying this had I came here on a vacation, living here I was determined not to. “Let’s grab some dinner,” Jack suggested. “Right on cue my stomach growled. Not able to deny my hunger, I agreed.
We stopped at a small diner situated right on the corner. “Don’t you think dad’s going to want us to eat with the family tonight?” I asked. Jack shrugged, “Should have told us sooner if he did.” I smiled. Jack could care less what our parents thought. He had never went out of his was to please them.
Jack had wanted to become involved with drama and music. Mom and dad had a different idea. They wanted Jack on the ski team. Both of my parents had been skiers, Alison had been a skier, even I had been a skier. Jack liked to ski recreationally but didn’t want to compete. He made it clear that he wasn’t interested. That was when my dad refused to give Jack the money he needed for anything saying he was cut off until he decided to ski. So Jack agreed to try out. Expecting us all to make the team my parents showed up to cheer us on. We all made it, that is except Jack. He fell, not once but twice. When I asked him about it later he looked at me and said, “I told those bastards I didn’t want to ski.”
I think that’s why I got along with Jack so well. Though I would never blatantly be rebellious, I admired him for it. His whole life he had done what he wanted. Hewasn'treally disrespectful; he just felt he should live his life how he wanted, not according to their standards. Alison was the opposite. She spent her life sucking up to adults everywhere. Everyone loved her, everyone except Jack and I. We saw right through her fake, people-pleasing attitude and spent as little time around her as possible.
Halfway through the hamburger I had eaten my phone went off. I reached in my purse to search for it. It was Ang. “Oh my gosh I miss you so much, how’s Chicago?”
“It’s so ghetto,” I sighed. “I would give anything to be back in Aspen.”
“And I would give anything to have you back Brooklyn, it’s been so boring here without you.”
“At least you still have Kaity,” I started, “I don’t know anybody here.”
“You have Jack and Alison,” she argued.
I gagged, “I would rather stab myself repeatedly than spend ten minutes with Alison and you know that Ang.” I didn’t really feel like talking to her, it made me miserable thinking about her and Kaity back in Aspen. “I have to go,” I lied, “I’ll call you later” I promised. Without waiting for her response I hung up with no intention of calling her back.
Back at our Chicago mansion I decided to explore the house. I told myself that if I was going to be living there for the next two years I should at least know where to find the bathroom. As it turned out there were six of them. I claimed the one right across the hall as my own then went on to see the rest of the house. On top of the six bathrooms we had 2 living rooms, a separate kitchen and dining room, 8 bedrooms, 2 office spaces and several other rooms that could server a variety of purposes. For a brief second I wondered what it would be like to be poor but as quickly as the thought had formed I pushed it out of my head. Icouldn'timagine ever having to find out.