This was what sparked my novel and though I have moved on, I still love this piece. #First
|The Secret is in the Detail
By Anastasia Schneider
“How did I know something was going to go wrong?” I asked as I hung up the now ruined barista uniform on the book door hooks.
My stepdad stood there sipping his coffee calmly, and thankfully stopped when he saw what had happen to my uniform. The apron couldn't tie anymore because the strings were ripped off, the cap's stitching had come undone and now had a hole on the side of it. There was also a good chance my white shirt wasn't washed yet. I needed that.
“I am so sorry. . .” He said putting his coffee down and walking over to me.
I nodded. “Yeah, so am I. Not because I'll have to pay for a new uniform though.” I sighed for an effect. “I let you talk me into trusting the demon spawn of a sister.” I dropped my book bag on the table and crossed my arms at him.
Hank's eyes were stuck on my uniform. He was responsible for this. I couldn't directly blame it on Emma yet, but rest a sure my sister had planned some part of this sabotage.
“Caden, I am so sorry.” He looked pretty upset about it. After another moment of staring between me and my uniform, he pulled out his wallet.
“No,” I waved him off. “I want immunity.”
His face narrowed. “I don't know, what are we talking about?”
A smirk appeared on my face as the thought formed in my head. “Just a little security.”
Hank took a deep breath and looked away in thought. I leaned on the counter top, readying my next move if this one failed.
“How did I get here?” Hank murmured to himself not to low.
“You trusted Em.” I politely answered
He looked to me with pity. “She's so sweet and kind, I didn't think-”
“Sixteen years will certainly teach you something about someone, I would know.” I tilted my head and smiled. “Em is as sweet as a pineapple. Sweet on the inside with spikes on the outside you haven't rubbed the wrong way yet.”
Hank sighed and tapped his fingers on the counter, looking defeated. Defeated by a fifteen year old girl that hasn't opened a book in the past three years.
Hank is my dad, he's been around long enough. Just not long enough in order to know Emma, or close enough. Being her biological brother I had a VIP pass to all of the dirty tricks she had up her sleeves and a- heads up to any scheme I may or may not want to part take in. Hank is as fatherly as the next one, and being such as that he and Mom has to deal with the common wall every parent has to deal with.The wall put up to secure all our secrets from them.
I haven't even gotten to Hank's own kid and my stepbrother Jackson. Don't get me started. Speaking of him, his voice came from the front following with slam of two car doors and the opening of the front door. Hank and I turned to see Jack huffing in the doorway.
“You're not going to believe this.” He said in between huffs. He jabbed a thumb behind him and there was stomping.
I was the fist one to pass Jack with Hank right on my heels. Jack was picking up Em from school. Unless they did another 'we found a stray dog' stunt again, it had to be about my sister. From the dinning room, there was a straight shot to the living room and part of the stairs. I saw the boots of my sister running upstairs.
“Emma!” I called after her. “Get back here!” I ran up the stairs but she had turned down the hall already.
“Go away Caden!” She yelled back.
I rolled my eyes. “What exactly am I not going to believe?” I asked as I ran down the hall.
She slammed her door shut and clicked it locked. “Go away!” She yelled through the door.
I reached the door and hit the door with my fist. Not the best idea but my hand flew before I could think about it. Hank was right behind me, sniffing and calling for Emma. Glancing back, Jackson was at the top of the stairs silently watching us. I stopped banging on the door and rushed over to him.
“What exactly is going on?” I asked impatiently.
Jack suppressed a laugh with a huge smile. “You wouldn't believe me if I told you right here right now.”
I threw my hands up in the air. “You don't really have another option bro.”
Jack crossed his arms in a amusement. “You remember Claudia?”
Emma's terrible best friend that wasn't allowed to come over because of her drunken outburst last year's summer Barbecue? “No one could forget Claudia, I've tried,” I nodded.
“Emma let Claudia dye her hair.”
I took a deep breath. Shaking my head, my face relaxed. I wasn't worried anymore. There was no way Emma would dye her hair, none the less let Claudia dye her hair. “Emma wouldn't be that stupid.”
“What?” Hank gasped
I turned as her door opened. Hank took a step back and Emma stepped out.
“I'm not.” Emma said in a fierce glare at me.
I took a long at her. She had on her flannel shirt with a jacket open on top, some skinny jeans and her sneakers still on. Her hair wasn't the matching dark shade anymore. It didn't match mine. Instead it was bright green with light brown tips. It highlighted her dark brown eyes. Yet again. It was freaking green.
“Oh my god.” I said in a shallow breath staring at her. Beside her, Hank was speechless. Beside me Jack was quietly laughing to himself.
“It's not bad. I like it.” Emma commented flipping a strand over her shoulder.
I nodded briefly at my sister before looking to Hank. He met me. “I don't want security. I just want a front row seat to this idiot's death.”
Emma huffed and took several steps towards me until she was on top of my toes. “Don't call me an idiot! I'm not an idiot!”
I sucked my teeth in her face and headed down the stairs. Emma was on my heels, with Hank on her's and Jack casually following us. When I got back to the kitchen I glanced at the clock briefly before hopping on to the counter in front of the windows. They looked out to the backyard.
“I will kick your butt Caden, don't think I won't!' Emma said coming into the kitchen
Jackson sat in a chair with the breakfast bar and watched with a smirk on his face.
Emma huffed threw her teeth towards me. “I like it.”
“Did you like sending my uniform to the Dryer's with a wrong set of instructions?” I snidely shot back.
“Loved it.” She snickered.
I hopped off the counter. Hank got in between us.
“Go pine tree. Go.” Jack cheered preoccupied by something.
I wasn't paying attention to him. I was more focused on my sister and her admittance to the crime towards my uniform. “Better wish your stuff good luck.”
We pressed together against Hank, giving him little space to move.
“Don't you dare touch my stuff.” She hissed.
I smirked superior. “Watch me.” Instead of walking past her to the stairs, I took a few steps back till my back hit the counter. “All I need is five seconds.”
Emma crossed her arms. “What are you going to do in five seconds, flip me off?”
Jack gasped and everyone turned. Standing in the doorway was none other than mommy dearest, in a dress suit for work. Everyone was surprised to see her, except me. I saw what time it was. We all came home around the same time, except for Hank. Today though, he was off.
Mom stared down Emma who wore a mortified look on her face. I stuck my hands in my pockets and pushed off the counter.
“What the hell did you do with your hair?” Mom said wide mouthed.
I carefully walked around Hank close to Emma. Walking past her, I leaned close and whispered in her ear. Everyone could still hear me.
“I'm going to burn your world down in five seconds.” I walked over to my mother, pecked her on her cheek and left the room. It exploded with yelling a second later. I strolled upstairs with Jack coming up a few minutes later. In the end, I got my new uniform paid for in full and some pocket change with Emma officially grounded for the next two months. When she was shame walking to her room, a door beside me, I took a moment to stand in front of my bedroom door and silently gloat.
“Why can't we play nice?” I asked sweetly to her as she passed
She paused at the shut door and glared at me. “Maybe if you hadn't switched the shampoo bottle with hair coloring, this wouldn't have been a problem.”
I chuckled lowly. “But then you would have gotten off scott-free for going in my room. For the third damn time.”
She leaned on the frame and smiled mischievously at me. “Got something to hide Caden?”
I stepped into my room and slowly started to shut the door. Through the small crack, I smiled at her the same. “From you? Quite a bit.”