Summer. The time of year when stepping outside is perfectly safe and acceptable. They break out their tanning lotions, picnic baskets and skateboards. However, for us Marvils, it is the stormiest time of year.
“Mum?” I said wearily as I slid through the hospital’s white hallways, my Alice+Olivia shorts crinkling with each hasty step.
“Oh, good. You girls are here,” Dad, a few paces behind me, said as Ryan and Jamie appeared out of a corner.
“Where is she?” I panted.
Ryan looked down at the floor, trying to hide her red, puffy eyes. Weakly, she cocked her head towards the room we were standing outside of.
“Mum?” I rushed in, my heart beating so hard it was audible. I felt my insides shriek as my wide-open eyes fell on the pale woman tucked in the bed. I whispered, “Mum,” my voice hoarse from shock. Her skin was golden and glowing just a few days ago. I slowly crawled to her bed as she struggled to open her eyes. She reached a shaky hand up and placed it in mine. I’m not sure whether it was the feel of her gelid skin or the feel of her veins pumping against mine that sent the shiver up my spine. Either way, the bitter nip left goosebumps covering my arms.
A warm gush breathed into my ear. “I spoke to the doctor,” whispered Dad, pulling me out of the room by my waist. I gulped, swallowing my biggest fear: Was it so bad that she couldn’t speak?
I looked at the tall man with quivering eyes, pressing my lips together as I prepped myself for the worst. Finally, Dad spoke.
“Apparently,” he looked down, pausing to find the right words, “She fainted really early in the morning, so your sisters brought her here. She thought that her blood sugar simply dropped because of her new diet, but..”
“…but, they think it’s something else.”
I stared at his face for a while, my mouth agape. His mouth seemed to move faster than his words, almost as if he was mouthing the words to me. I crossed my arms, shielding myself from the cold/him, “What do you mean something else?”
He just shrugged. His lips parted, but again, no words came out. And this time, not just because I couldn’t hear them.
Jamie got up, obviously saving him from what was about to be an awkward pause. Doesn’t she get that he left us? Doesn’t she see who he is? “They don’t know yet,” she said.
The next day. June 11th. The first official day of Summer Break. The time to shed your winter layers, put on a lace shirt, your favourite sandals, and go to the beach.
But I, Dylan Marvil, faced a different meaning to the anticipated vacation. As the temperatures rise, the beaches heat up and the land sizzles, so do the people. Just like some people are affected by winter blues, others are affected by summertime sadness. The heat pricks their bare skin, and their sweaty foreheads are easier to aggravate than ever.
That is, if you could feel the heat. I was numb to it. I rolled onto our couch, wrapped in my blanket cocoon. I stared at the Oscar De La Renta letter on the coffee table, untouched since the incident. Marvil for Oscar. I sighed. There is no Marvil without Merri-Lee. Suddenly, the ivory paper looked wilted. The embossed logo, dead. It seemed to have lost all its appeal, as if all of its beauty had scurried out to play in the sand, leaving the paper plain and alone. I threw my head back when the scent of coffee and caramel wafted up my nose.
Dad looked down at me. “Caramel Macchiato with extra caramel, just how you like it.”
“Are you calling me fat?” I said with bored eyes.
He dismissed my comment, letting out a sigh-grunt. “So, that Oscar guy. Big opportunity, huh?” He allowed himself to sit on my couch.
“I talked to your mum,” Funny how he suddenly appears and checks on her every other second, after over a decade of a status of MIA. “She wants you to do it.”
“And why should I believe any of the bullshit you tell me?!” I yelled, a little louder than I meant to.
Angrily, I swung my bag over my shoulder. My migraine disappeared. My vision was no longer hazy. My energy levels soared higher than those in the macchiato. And my body, hotter than a freshly-brewed espresso. Nothing fuels the body like anger. I stormed to the door, messy hair, dead face, bare eyelashes, everything.
Just as I clutched the handle, my phone vibrated. It was from Jamie.
See you at Saks at 10. Mum insists we do it.
Is it just me or has my writing style really changed?
Also, I know that one of the main reasons we love reading about The Clique is because of their glamorous lifestyles, but I thought I’d show a darker side to it–because really, no life is perfect–while still incorporating some of the glamour. Let me know what you think of it in the comments below.
It might have something to do with the fact that I typed this post in bed rather than my chaise. Hmmm…