(This takes place before the events of the movie)
My phone went off, the vibration shaking my pillow. I let out a long grumble and reach around under my pillow for the stupid thing. My fingers finally wrapped around the phone, while it was still vibrating. I pull it from out and see my mom calling me.
I tap the answer button and put it up to my ear. “Hello?” I say in my still groggy morning voice.
“[y/n], did you just wake up? It’s eleve- Oh nevermind.” My mom’s annoyed tone said over the phone. “I need you to pick me up from work in two hours.”
“But I don’t have the car.” I said rubbing the side of my head still trying to fight the fogginess of my brain.
“Dad took me to work and due to… some things, he’s not picking me up.” She said. “My keys are in the kitchen on the key hooks.”
“Are you two fighting again?” I ask with a frown. I play with the material of my pillow case between my thumb and my forefinger.
“It’s… it’s nothing like that. Just… a disagreement.” I can tell she’s lying, but I let her go on. “[n/n]… just please pick me up on time. Also, can you grab me the envelope on my table next to my bed before you pick me up? I need it today.”
“Sure thing.” I say with a grunt as I push myself to sit up. “I love you mom.”
“Love you too darling. I’ll see you at one then.” She says, suddenly sounding happy.
“Okay.” I say just before hanging up. I frown at the time on my phone, it’s eleven in the morning and I haven’t even gotten up.
I drag myself out of bed and walk to my desk that has a mirror on it. I sit on the chair in front of it and look at my reflection. My [h/l] [h/c] was the absolute definition of bedhead, it frizzed and stuck out everywhere. My [e/c] eyes still a little watery from sleep and the stress I’m already beginning to feel. I frown at myself and wonder when any of this will ever end.
I picked up my [f/c] brush and began trying to tame this mane of what I call my hair. My parents began fighting a little over three months ago. At first it was just disputes and arguments, then it slowly progressed to actual fights that was out of pure resentment of each other. I would just end up either hiding in my room to bury myself into drawing or reading. Or I would take the car and go out to… well read or draw.
Lately it’s been angering me, because some of the things my mom or dad say to one another. I’m sometimes the root of the argument and it scares me. Am I the cause of the fighting? Is it me who started everything? I sometimes wonder if I never existed if they would fight. I just wonder if I’m the very thing that keeps my parents from being happy.
The thought of it invites tears to my eyes and my chest starts to feel tight. I look at my reflection with absolute shame. I just want it all to stop, the fights, the threats, everything. I just want it to all stop.
The doorbell rang through the apartment, making me drop my brush. “Damn it!” I say frustrated as I bend down to pick it up. The doorbell rang again and I get off my seat annoyed.
I grab a hair band from my desk and then make my way to the front door. As I made my way down to the hall, I was putting my hair up in a lazy bun, which was probably going to fall at any given moment. The doorbell rang again and I let out a grumble.
I unlock the door and open the door to reveal a man in a suit. “Um… can I help you?” I asked with a rather annoyed tone.
“Well, yes you can.” The man said with a nod. “Is Joanne [l/n] here?”
That was was the name of your mother. Your stomach got very tight and you felt your heart drop. “Um… not at the moment. What do you want with her?” I say with a small nervous tone.
“That’s my business. Please tell her that I dropped by and give her this.” He said handing me a card. “If she’s serious about this, tell her I do not want my time to be wasted since I am busy. I’m coming back around five. Will she be here?” I nod as I took the card to examine it. “Good. Have a nice afternoon.”
I shut the door without telling him goodbye as I am fixated on his card. It says he’s a marriage counselor on the card, but from what it sounded like, he’s not a good one. He has such an attitude and doesn’t seem to care. But this proves my mom is trying to fix this. I wonder if dad knows.
I look at the clock above the tv and see that it’s already eleven twenty. I need to go take a shower and get ready so I can get something to eat before I pick up my mom. I quickly finish up my shower and get to my room to get dressed.
I put on a long sleeve shirt, a thick winter coat, some jeans and some winter boots. I braid my hair to the side and put on a beanie. Just before I leave my room, I grab my phone and my bag that has my artbook with my art pens and pencils. Once I throw the bag over my should I head to the kitchen to grab the car keys. I took the keys off the hook and start to head for the door.
I wrap my fingers around the doorknob to only remember the envelope my mom told me to grab. When I walk into the room, it is way more messier than I last remembered my parents room being. Stuff is thrown here and there in piles, some scattered paperwork everywhere and even some old soda cans and beer cans scattered about. I frown at all of this and see that the room is falling apart just as much as my parents relationship.
I walk around my parents queen sized bed to my mom’s side and grab the envelope. I see a big white wine bottle next to her lamp that is half empty. She just bought that yesterday morning. She never drank that much.
I look at the picture next to the wine bottle and see a picture of my father, mother and I we took last year in August. The picture has been taped back together as if one point my dad was torn off the picture. A tear rolled down my cheek and I quickly left the room to prevent myself from crying.
I ran out the house and down to the car to get away from it. It’s twelve thirty and a fifteen minutes drive to my mom’s work. There’s no way I have enough time to grab something to eat on my way to get something to eat. I guess I’ll get it afterwards. I pull into the parking lot of my mother’s job.
She works at a fancy restaurant as a waitress and she can make some decent tips. Bless her soul, because being a waitress is a heck of a job. I realized that I have about fifteen or twenty minutes till she’s off. So I grab my bag from the backseat and grab my sketchbook.
I flip through the pages and see all the different art I’ve made over the past three months. I have fifteen other artbooks completely full at home of drawings I’ve made over the past seven years. I’m actually quite proud of my collection of drawings I’ve done. I have a specific shelf for it too. Maybe they’ll be worth something in the future.
I look at the front of the restaurant for anything that I could use. I see swirls on the glass door and some of the glass pane art, so I began to sketch a drawing of Sandman. I smile while drawing Sandman and think about how much he’s helped me through my life. I wish I could thank him for everything. I wish I could meet him. All the good dreams I’ve woken up from and been inspired to draw because of those dreams is because of him.
You may be thinking, weird for a seventeen year old to believe in a little ole myth like Sandman. But I believe in all of them. Tooth Fairy, Easter Bunny, Santa, heck! Even that freaking St. Patrick’s Day Leprechaun! I’ve seen the Easter Bunny when I was young, I don’t know if he remembers me. But he saw I was awake and he ended up giving me a special egg.
Being ten, I was so ecstatic. It was the most amazing gift I’ve ever been given. I still have the egg on my desk today. It has a cute little bow on it and has the easter bunny shadow running around it with other tiny eggs around him. It was the best gift I’ve ever been given. I’ve never stopped believing in them and never plan to.
I smile at the sketch I’ve been making. It’s coming out to be Sandman in a grove of trees, using his sand powers that swirl around the trees. I mean, it’s a rough sketch so far. But it’s going to look way better when it’s finished. A tap on the window from the passenger side makes me look up and I see my mom. I give her a smile and tap the button to unlock the door.
“Hi sweetie.” She says with a sigh as she sits down. “What are you drawing there?”
“Sandman in the grove of trees, spreading his happiness.” I saw looking at the drawing. “I mean it’s not finished, but I just started. I’ll show you the finished work tonight or tomorrow.” I look at her to see her smiling. “Oh! I got the envelope. It’s in my bag.” I grab my bag from the back and take out the envelope and pass it to her.
“Thank you so much.” She says with a smile. “I’m gonna need you to drive us back home and I’m gonna go need to go run some errands okay?”
“Okay.” I say with a nod as I slide my sketchbook back into my bag. “Can I get something to eat? I haven’t eaten yet.” She nods as she examined the letter.
I start the car and start driving to the nearest fast food joint. I sometimes catch glimpses of her examining the letter with a saddened expression. I see a government printing on the top corner of the paper. I tighten my grip on the wheel as I watch the road. If that’s what I’m thinking it is… that’s plan B if the counseling doesn’t work.
A reality I don’t dare to face…