office farewell

Familiarities

Second installment of the Jacob Black “Home” series, requested by a few lovely anons. Since the series is pretty well mapped-out, all I needed was a request to continue, and you all seemed excited for the next part. Hope you like it!

All past and future installments of this series can be found on the “The Story Continues…” page.

Technically, you didn’t ‘wake up” on Monday morning, as you never managed to accomplish the blissful surrender of sleep. Your night was one of tossing aimlessly, lulled to the brink of peace by the pattering of rain against the siding of Charlie’s house, your mind kick-starting in what would be your last seconds of consciousness. You knew by midnight that you weren’t going to be able to trick yourself into a calm enough state for sleep. No, your impromptu rendezvous with Jacob the night before had your nerves hot-wired and electrified; not the best combination when all you needed was to slow your breathing and slip away for a few hours. So, technically, you arose on your first day back at Forks high school tired-eyed and groggy, silently cursing Jacob’s good intentions through a weak smile as you sauntered out of your bedroom, your joints crackling like a dying bonfire as you set your body into motion after so long stagnant. You heard Charlie moseying around his kitchen, taking extra care to close each uncharacteristically cheery yellow cabinet as quietly as he could, shuffling about from place to place. His actions were sweet, you’d give him that, and you’d probably appreciate them a bit more if you’d had any sleep that night… but there was absolutely no need to tiptoe around noiselessly when he was the only one waking up that morning. He had no way of knowing you’d been awake since Sunday morning. For all he knew, Bells was upstairs mumbling into her pillows. Perhaps you only noticed his quiet morning manner because you were so used to Renee’s slamming and hushed singing as she burnt your breakfast every morning. Charlie was different, that much was as obvious and as stark a contrast as black and white. But different wasn’t bad.

You stumbled through the doorway into the kitchen, Charlie’s head snapping around, his gaze falling on the deep splotches of colour beneath your eyes. You hadn’t passed by a mirror yet, thank God, but you knew you looked less than well-rested. His brow furrowed guiltily, his head lolling to the side as you mumbled an impressively gravelly “Good morning.”

“I didn’t wake you, did I?” He poked absentmindedly at the eggs he was preparing, his spatula inching this way and that through the masses of fluffy gold. Eggs again. His talent in the kitchen literally didn’t go any farther. Between Charlie’s extreme dairy intake and Renee’s regularly inedible creations, you’d never developed trust in the kitchen. Luckily for you, your sister knew her way around a frying pan. You’d have to poke Bella on this one, if she wasn’t already planning an attack.

“No, Dad. I couldn’t quite…” you trailed off, his eyebrow raising in confusion. You waved your hand in the air as if to swipe your unfinished speech from the morning air, your fingers snagging on vowels as consonants smeared across the chilling drafts creeping in from the open window. “Long night is all.” Charlie nodded, his mustache arcing as his lips tugged downwards. He removed the eggs from the stove top, scraping his gourmet breakfast onto a porcelain dinner plate. His torso twisted as he extended the typical meal towards your chest urging you with a wordless tip of his head to take the dish. He returned to the stove, cracking a few eggs onto the pan, the room sizzling with the sound of crackling heat. You moved to sit in your usual chair, grasping at the silverware Charlie inched in your direction.

“This wouldn’t happen to have anything to do with Jacob, would it?” He asked, his deep voice tinged with a teasing bite, however honest his question was. You rolled your eyes, scoffing under your breath before forcing the eggs down your throat. “Okay, okay, I know my limits,” he poked around at Bella’s food, the plastic spatula scraping audibly against the non-stick surface. You waited patiently for the follow-up you knew was en route. Charlie may not talk much, but when he did he was about as predictable as rain in your tiny town. “I’m just saying… that kid’s good for you, Y/n. As a friend, or…” You were saved from Charlie’s wingman speech by Bella’s entry, her eyes identically bruised beneath from lack of sleep. You lifted your head in nonverbal greeting. Charlie lifted his gaze from the stove, smiling briefly. “Morning, Bells. Sleep well?” Bella collapsed into her chair, her index finger and thumb meeting on her lower lip, absentmindedly running over the smooth skin they encountered there.

“Rain kept me up for a while, midnight maybe.” Charlie grunted apologetically, however awkwardly the apology was, as he portioned the rest of the eggs onto two dishes, taking his seat after placing a plate before Bella. Bella dug in, shoveling a steaming mass of gold into her mouth, chewing around her next words. “Seriously, I was drowning. I thought you said it was going to be a dry year?” At this, Charlie’s head popped up, his brow furrowed at the very thought.

“Dry year? Where did you hea-” He began to form some sort of meteorological explanation for why Forks would likely never have a dry year, but your foot beneath the table silenced him before he could let slip any incriminating details. You shot him a cautioning glance, your lips pursed against verbal warning. His eyes widened in understanding, and he ducked his head to his food. The rest of the meal was spent in comfortable silence. Charlie ducked out minutes before you did, off to the police station to monitor all that nothing with his armoured, riot-trained buddies. As soon as Bella finished eating, you washed and dried the dishes, packed your book bags, and started out. Climbing into Bella’s truck was a brief, happy reminder of the availability of Jacob; now that you were back in your old stomping grounds, you’d be able to spend so much more time with him. It wasn’t likely that Charlie would mind. Hell, he might even push you out the door and drive you to La Push himself. He was that eager to be Billy’s in-law. It was ridiculous. The car carried the faint (but prominent) aromas of spearmint and tobacco; not the heady stench of cigarettes, but the sweet, vanilla-shadow of good cigars. Had Billy been a smoker? It sure as Hell wasn’t Jake. Perhaps Harry Clearwater had borrowed the truck after Billy was confined to his chair. You didn’t mind the scent. It was… comfortable. Aged, like leather. It may have lost its initial luster, but the durability and dependability would always be there. Bella slid into the driver’s seat, shaking rain from her sleeves as she settled in. She turned the key in the ignition, causing the both of us to start.

“You’ve released the beast, Bells,” you whispered, projecting even so soft a sound as your voice in order to be heard over the colossal roar of the truck’s engine. Hey, if this was the only fault, Bella would be safe. She backed out of Charlie’s driveway, her warm brown eyes flashing to yours after a few seconds on the main road.

“The thing’s got character,” she replied, chewing anxiously on her lip. She had more to say. “This… this isn’t going to stick out, is it? I mean, you’ve been to the school. It’s not too bad, is it? The sound?” You shook your head, dismissing her worry.

“No, most of the student body drives clunkers. You’ll only stick out because you’re a new face. I’m sure you’ll be fine in a week or so.” You managed to sink one of her fears while simultaneously giving birth to another. She sighed, allowing her breath to dip into a groan as she ran out of air to expel from her lungs. “Bella, you’ll be fine. Just talk about Phoenix and try not to take anyone with you if you fall.” She snorted, gripping the wheel with a firmer conviction, likely thinking of rooting herself to the car seat to avoid any possible (and likely) wipe-outs.

“Yeah, I’ll try my best.” The remainder of the drive was spent in silence as Bella squinted through the light rain bouncing off of her windshield, following the very minor directions you supplied as the road wound on. Eventually, you arrived in the minimalist parking lot of Forks high school. You could read Bella’s face like a book as she analyzed the school’s exterior, noting the lack of barbed wire and security guards. It was a whole lot different than Phoenix, that much was obvious. The school consisted of a cluster of brick buildings, more homely than educational, leaving the students milling about in the damp morning looking like over-friendly neighbors conversing over their soggy lawn divides, casually holding conversation while sticking behind their respective borders. There were very few people present this early, but it gave your sister enough time to stumble her way to the main office. You bid her farewell and the best of luck, watching her wander off as you started towards a group of vaguely familiar faces, wishing every hood was hiding a face you knew to be miles away.

The school day was rather stereotypical. Your classes were hushed by the calming soundtrack of the rain beating against the windows. You were surprised to find the student body was merging classes together; a certain Angela Weber was in your English class, despite the age difference of a year that should have separated you. Looks like Forks was dipping in population again. She was a familiar face in the library, both in and out of school. You two got along swimmingly. You passed Bella in the halls more than once, and each time you saw her she was flocked by one of the overtly desperate bachelors in her grade. Mike Newton’s spiky hair was visible, even if his face was fully absorbed in Bella’s. You thought you caught Eric Yorkie jabbering on about after school extracurriculars, but you couldn’t be sure. His hair was very similar to Ben’s, and he passed by too quickly to distinguish. Lunch was average. Bella had made a friend in Jessica Stanley, the bouncy one that hung around Mike. Bells was quiet, mostly, a familiar habit of hers, but she seemed comfortable enough. This was, of course, before Biology.

You hadn’t met the Cullens last year. It was, ironically enough, a rather dry season, and they were always… camping, you think. Charlie was on good terms with the adoptive father, and because of their rather distant friendship, you heard bits and pieces about the children. Well behaved, smart clothing, fast cars, the likes. None of Charlie’s prompting could have prepared either you or Bella for the reaction of the youngest son of the doctor. That first day left a mark on Bella, and no amount of assurance about their usual manners could have erased the stain in her eyes after the horrific experience of being Edward Cullen’s lab partner. She was quizzical during the car ride home, and you told her what little you knew of the siblings. You’d glimpsed the shorter one in the halls once or twice throughout the day, but she had seemed aloof… distracted somehow, on a different plane of existence. Her eyes were strangely dark, you remembered, and she looked confused as she passed. She could have glanced your way, but you weren’t exactly following her on your radar, so you couldn’t spill your findings to Bella with the required confidence. The majority of the ride, however, was spent discussing faces and matching names to each she’d interacted with throughout the day. She was partial to Jessica, and she found both Mike and Eric kind enough to disregard how blatantly clingy they were. As she pulled into the driveway, all talk of the Cullen boy was long gone. Thoughts, however, would linger.

Charlie’s cruiser was in his parking spot, surprisingly enough. You’d thought his shifts would be longer than the seven-odd hours you’d been away at school. You slid from the passenger seat, trailing along behind your sister, your mind calculating and recalculating how probable it was for Charlie to be taking his lunch break at home. His jacket was hanging by the door, pistol and all, and the softened sounds of sports announcers blared through the drywall separating the entryway from the living room. He must have gotten the day off, seeing as the crime-rate in Forks was dipping below the marked average. Bella ducked into the kitchen, giving you a knowing look that easily narrated how quickly she intended to remedy your meal plan, leaving you to greet the Chief. Charlie was in civilian dress, his feet propped-up on the coffee table. He grinned when he saw you, sitting straighter, dislodging himself from the divot he’d created in the sofa’s cushions.

“Hey, Y/n, how was your first day back?” Almost as soon as the words had slipped through his lips, he was following up with another message. “Jacob called a few minutes ago, you just missed him.” You replied quickly to his inquiries, congratulating him on the much-needed time off, darting around the corner to the landline, the sounds of Bella rifling through Charlie’s refrigerator mingling sweetly with the banter of the anchors emanating from Charlie’s television. It sounded like home. You snagged the post-it note from the wall, furiously jabbing Jacob’s number into the phone, holding the receiver to your ear, your heart racing along to every tedious dial tone. Jake answered on the second ring. Clearly, he was lingering by the phone.

“Hey! That was quick,” he remarked, his voice spreading warmth over the miles that separated you. God, it was good to be near Jacob again.

“Yeah, I just got in. The truck runs great, by the way. A little warning with the engine would’ve been nice, but it runs just fine.” Jacob chuckled, his laughter crackling over the line.

“Sorry about that. I just wanted to make sure you kept the thing. I’d be driving it if it wasn’t for Bella. Tell her thanks for me.” He paused, inhaling deeply, the clinking of his household activities transferring dully to your end. “So, is Charlie watching the game tonight?” His voice was strangely hopeful for the topic of college football. You ducked your head around the corner, repeating the question to your father. He nodded, occupied by the predictions being spewed at him through the screen. You relayed the information to Jacob, who seemed to smile audibly. “That’s great! Billy’s got some of Harry’s fish fry. Your dad’s welcome to come over. Billy hasn’t seen Bella in years, and I’m sure he wants to talk about the truck.” He paused, sighing sarcastically. “”And I guess you can come too.” You laughed, your voices intertwining. When Jake continued, his tone was lifted slightly by the dying end of his laughter. “No, seriously, come over. I can’t sit through another game on my own. I need you here, Y/n. I’ll lose it, I swear.” You giggled, leaning your shoulder against the wall, eyeing Charlie through the opening in the living room wall.

“Yeah, I’ll come around. If Harry’s cooking, it won’t take much to get Charlie moving either. I’ll see you later on, then.” Jacob, again, smiled through the phone. The kid radiated positive energy like a nuclear reactor.

“Sure, sure. See you then.” You hung up, your hands lingering on the smooth plastic of the telephone, your heart hammering in your chest. Your months without Jacob Black were about to be erased from your memory completely. La Push was a promise tugging you towards the horizon, coaxing you out the door with whispers of Jacob’s name.

My office is throwing a farewell party tonight and I’ve been sitting alone in the parking lot for an hour because my evite said it was 5-8 but it turns out my email was scheduled for central HONDURAS TIME and not central NORTH AMERICA time
I thought they were pulling my leg cuz when I got here, all the lights were off and there was a huge bright garage sale sign on the door

What in the hell has my professional life turned into lmfao

The Office Finale

Just finished watching The Office finale. I feel like I’ve invested so much time into watching this show and tonights episode was such a perfect way of ending everything. I’m really glad they brought back Michael Scott but didnt give him a big role that would take away from everyone else. I dont know the last time I’ve laughed and cried at the same time before tonight. I will miss this show greatly, and hope they play re-runs of it for years to come.


Bears. Beets. Battlestar Galactica.