The
Underachievers
CHAPTER
13
Zoey Confused
“Do you have ketchup?” Asked Aria.
“Ketchup? For pizza rolls?” I asked as I took the hot tray out of the oven.
“Yeah!”
“Uh, gross but yes,” I said.
“I don’t see it Zoey,” said Aria.
“Middle shelf in the door,” I said.
“Aha!” Said Aria. “So, the grandparents are coming for a visit this weekend. I’m excited but I’m bummed because you are finally free this Saturday. Are you excited or what? What are you going to do?”
“I’m at my Dads this weekend anyway. I’m hoping to sleep in and I’ve been trying to talk my Dad into taking me to the art museum. Owen is begging to go to some movie though.”
“Brothers! Hey you dropped a couple pizza rolls,” Aria said.
“Dipper! Come here boy! Dipper!”
The sound of dippers nails tapping at running speed were heard from the hallway to the kitchen. I pointed the pizza rolls out to Dipper and he happily cleaned up for me. Aria and I took our pizza rolls to my room. We checked the school website and sure enough the picture of our mural was there at the top of the page. Underneath was a picture of the 6 of us standing in front of our mural. I felt pretty proud. One day I would have a website with all my artwork on display and all the tattoos I designed for customers. It is going to be awesome.
“Is that Braeden?” Aria asked.
“Yeah.”
“OMG he is hot. Does he have a girlfriend?”
“Aria! I thought you liked Zach.”
“I can like more than one guy. Wait, do you like Braeden?”
“No. I mean, not like that.”
“If you had to date one of those guys who would you go out with?” Asked Aria.
“Gah, I don’t know. Maybe Ben. Maybe!”
“Which one is Ben?”
I pointed to Ben.
“Really? Why him?” I mean he’s not ugly or anything.”
“He’s funny and he makes some really cool comic characters. You should see them.”
“OMG you totally love him!” Said Aria.
“Um, no, I totally don’t. I just like him. As a friend.”
“Oh. Well you can do better.” Said Aria.
“I’m not looking for a boyfriend. You are the boy crazy one.”
“You just wait Zoey my dear. Any day now your boy crazy meter will spin out of control and permanently stick in the red hot zone.”
“You are so weird. Don’t hold your breath.”
“Just wait and see,” said Aria.
That night as I got ready for bed I looked at myself in the mirror. Really looked. I saw a short middle school girl with short hair and fake tattoos. My face is kind of round. My eyes are kind of pretty. I’m not fat but I’m not skinny. I wondered if any boys would ever like me. Will someone accept my opinions, who I am, my fashion choices, my love of art, the fact that I want to be a tattoo artist? Darn Aria for making me think about these things. I don’t want a boyfriend right now anyway. Middle school relationships don’t usually last long anyway. They are more like pre-relationships. Practice for a future real relationship. It’s weird. Aria’s weird.
I got into bed. Thank goodness tomorrow was Friday. Plus no Saturday detention! I’m so glad that is over. Yet, why do I feel kind of sad about it? No part of me can honestly miss going to Saturday detentions. I mean they were horrible. Well, not totally. The mural part was cool and the others were pretty cool. It’s not like I won’t see them again. I see them at school and Sawyer said he would have us all over for a game night sometime. What was my problem? Maybe I’m just tired.
Well, Friday happened. A test, a quiz, an embarrassing wardrobe malfunction (Don’t even ask!), a falling out with my friend Monique, an excruciatingly boring history lesson, and a headache. Now to pack a few things to bring to my Dads tonight. Sometimes it sucks having to go back and forth between two homes. I really don’t feel like going to my Dads. But it’s his turn to have us. I love my Dad and I wouldn’t want to hurt his feelings or jip him out of his time with us, but I just want to stay here this weekend. I feel more at home in the house I grew up in. Sure my Dad has a nice little apartment, and I have my own little room I got to decorate and all. It’s just not the same. My Dad has been dating someone for a while now too. It’s weird. I’m so glad my Mom isn’t dating anyone. I think I’d be even more weirded out having a strange man at our house.
“Pizza again!”
“Zoey, give me a break it’s been a long week. I just couldn’t think of what to make and I’m too tired to cook anyway,” Mom said.
“I love pizza!!!” Yelled Owen. “Can I watch TV while I eat?”
“Sure,” said Mom.
“Mom! What happened to no TV at meals, its family time? We need to talk and share?”
“Do you have anything to share Zoey?” Asked Mom.
“No.”
“Me either. Let’s go join your brother. Maybe there’s a good movie on.”
“What time is Dad coming to get us?” I asked as I got comfy in the recliner.
“Oh, I forgot,” said Mom. “He had a late meeting. He will pick you up in the morning.”
“Not early I hope!”
“Probably around 10:00 AM. Why?” Asked Mom.
“No more detention, I wanted to sleep in.”
“You can sleep until he gets here,” said Mom.
“Oh Oh! Can we watch Dog Days! Please, Please!” Yelled Owen.
“Fine with me. Zoey?” Asked Mom.
“I guess,” I said.
“Yes!!” Yelled Owen.
I have to admit I was happy to have more time at home. I’d probably wake up by ten in the morning anyway. However in my young crazy teenage mind, now that I got what I wanted for a little bit anyway. I had to turn the tables around. Was it fair that if I wanted to stay here tonight that I would not have any choice in the matter? It was legally Dads turn with us. Yet he can just call up and say, “Sorry, working late. I’ll get the kids tomorrow.” Why does he get a choice and we don’t? If we have no choice legally, shouldn’t he have no choice legally? “Sorry Dad, you have a legal obligation to spend every minute of your assigned weekends with your children. Tell work they will have to manage without you.” Dumb grownup world.
After the movie we talked Mom into going to the drive thru for soft ice creams dipped in chocolate. It was so good! I climbed in to bed later than planned. I was just about to grab a book to read when I got a text. Aria has this way of knowing when I’m just about to do something so she sends a text interrupting my plans. Wait, this wasn’t Aria.
S~ Hey Zoey! Sup?
Who is this? Z
S~ Savannah!
OMG! Hi! Z
S~ Hi! Hope it’s not too late. I’m bored.
No, I’m happy you texted. Z
S~ No detention tomorrow. Weird, huh?
IKR! Z
S~ I will be sleeping in. You?
Totally! Z
S~ I have this weird feeling that I want to clean my room tomorrow. Crazy! What has detention done to me?
I know. I have this weird feeling like I’m almost kind of sad I won’t see you peeps tomorrow. Detention sucks. But painting with you all was awesome. Z
S~ SRSLY. Thank you! I thought I was nutso for almost feeling sad it was over.
We need an art class at school! Z
S~ OMG Yes!!!
Maybe we could talk Callahan into it? Z
S~ Maybe. It may be too late in the year. If the budget allows maybe next year. How about an after school art club?
GR8! We could put murals all over the school. =D Z
S~ Totally! Moms calling me. BRB
OK Z
I was so happy to be texting with Savannah! She is so cool. We texted for about an hour. We are going to talk to the guys and figure out how we can get the school to have some sort of art program or after school club or something for us. I think I realized that the mural was the first thing I have done in middle school that I was truly good at and felt proud of. I got so many nice compliments too. Too bad it wasn’t for a grade. If I had an art class or club to look forward to at school it would make middle school so much more bearable. Art is where I come alive and shine. We just have to get our school to let us have some kind of art experience. I was so excited about texting with Savannah and planning how to get art in our school I realized I had lost a couple hours of precious sleep.
I woke up at 9:30 AM. Time to shower and dress before my Dad arrived. Owen said he called and said not to eat anything because we were going out to breakfast. Score!
Dad took us to our favorite Pancake House. He let Owen get the chocolate chip pancakes with extra chocolate chips and a hot cocoa! That kid better not get car sick on me later. I tried pigs in a blanket. The orange juice here is so good. I told Dad about our plan to get some kind of art program going at school. He thought it was a great idea and said he would be happy to help in anyway if we needed it. I was feeling so much better today for some reason. I actually felt happy and kind of excited about something.
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