Saturday, November 27, 2010

Glenn Caswell Ch. 5 - The Teen Years

Gareth John Caswell was having a very important birthday.

It’s no big deal,” he shrugged to his mother, Glenn, trying to be nonchalant.

“Wrong, buddy boy,” she grinned, “It is wayyyyyyy a big deal. Soon you will be getting a driver’s license and the walls of this house will no longer be able to keep you constrained as you were. You’ll be turned loose among the unsuspecting citizens of Pleasantview. Be afraid, people, be very afraid.”

It was just the two of them in their little family and though his mother was the absolute ruler in the house, they were also best friends. Little Gareth could not imagine it differently. She just loved to be funny, that was all. He made his secret wish while his mother blew a toy horn and then blew out the candles.

Gareth just stood there and for  a minute he didn’t feel anything different

Then his body started to tingle a little and he jumped up in the air twirling with excitement. And then suddenly, just like that, he was grown; or almost grown, anyway. He was a teenager. He stretched then, and pumped his arm as he felt how strong he was.
“All RIGHT!”

Now his days would be filled with excitement, he was sure. He just wasn’t sure what excitement that would be…

Some things would still be the same…homework and school, basketball and diving. He went the next day and bought a cell phone. Once he could get a car there would be no holding him. If only they had a driveway…he decided when he had a chance he’d ask his mom if they couldn’t move somewhere he could maybe even work on his own car…

They did not move though, and when he got an old dilapidated car he had to store it in a rented garage with his Mom’s mainly unused car.

Glenn did not want to move. She had many friends whose kids were in high school or college who had big, inconvenient homes that they rattled around in. That was not for her. Gareth was of utmost importance to her, but she thought he could live with his old car in a rented garage. It was only a block away.

As for Glenn’s romance a few years ago with Remington Goth, it had foundered after a few months. For one thing Glenn discovered that his wife had not died, at least not the way he made it sound. She’d just disappeared, they didn’t know if she’d run off with a man, or had come to a violent end or both. They never found her body. Remington was cleared at the time, he had an alibi. After several years he had Bella declared legally dead. Glenn didn’t think he’d ever really got over her, though. No closure made it worse, she supposed, than if she’d died from some disease or a heart attack with her family all around. No closure made it worse, she supposed, than if she’d died from some disease or a heart attack with her family all around.  But she hadn’t liked that he’d withheld the truth from her. And frankly, as a former detective and private eye, Glenn just could not see herself married to a former suspect in a murder case. Nope.

They’d had some really great times, but Glenn couldn’t fall in love with him. Eventually she’d also realized that he was too controlling and a little too jealous for her. Gareth had always been polite to him, but could not seem to warm up to him, and that was another consideration.  But, going out again and taking a chance on Rem Goth hadn’t been  all bad for Glenn; she’d stopped automatically saying no to men who asked her out. Most of them she only went out with a couple times, but at least she wasn’t being a hermit anymore.

When John called Glenn up one night and asked to come over the next day, she was happy to see him, it had been a month or more since they’d met for coffee. Usually they did that once a week, but she’d been tied up and so had he.   

John told her briefly what had happened and asked Glenn to find out what she could about Brian Ottomas.After all, she was a former private detective.

“I suppose you need this information yesterday,” Glenn could be sarcastic, too, but she smiled to take the sting out of her words. John was usually so stoic, but he definitely was emotional now,

“You bet I want it quick.”

"Okay, don’t go all Charles Bronson on me, okay? I should be able to find information on him easily; it’s a very small town.”

John suddenly looked around, “Where’s Gareth?”

Glenn told him not to worry, Gareth was up on the third floor playing a game and could not hear what they were saying. John liked Gareth, but he didn’t want him to know about this and maybe even pass it around.

Glenn told him she would get right on it, that it was not a difficult thing to do, she would just go to city hall and check Records. John left, somewhat relieved.

What Glenn did not know was that Gareth had been paying attention when she was conversing with John in the kitchen. He hadn’t initially meant to pry, but he’d been on his way downstairs when a few names and words caught his attention; names  like Lori and Brian Ottomas and words like inappropriate behavior and criminal. So he’d sat down on the top of the steps and, deliberately eavesdropped. When he’d heard all he could on the subject and John got up from the table to leave, Gareth had dashed upstairs to the game room. He played for over an hour, but his mind was racing all the time. He'd been crazy about Lori since he was seven years old even if she only thought of him as an extra brother, and Trey was his best friend. So he didn’t like the idea of her being in danger or that she might be messing up her life. 

The next day it was a lovely warm day in spring, almost like summer, and Glenn decided to enjoy their pool for a while...

When she dried off and got dressed again she was bored with the woman she saw in the mirror. Deciding  she wanted a new look Glenn went to the salon to see if her regular hairdresser was working. Myra was off, so Glenn got even more adventurous; she asked for someone who could cut short hair really well and liked to do edgy stuff. Velma was the girl, they told her. Velma went to work with her scissors faster than anyone Glenn had seen before. When it was all through Glenn was thrilled. This was the cut she’d always wanted, very short, very choppy. It was so "her" and she absolutely loved it.

Gareth was making macaroni and cheese a week or two later when Glenn got a call from John. He was taking care of some business for his father in Atlanta, but he wanted to know if she’d learned anything. He had some information he’d found that he wanted to give to her. She spoke to him without really thinking about Gareth being in the same room.

After supper she got on her computer and began chasing down the not so common knowledge on Ottomas; stuff that you would NOT find in city hall. She still needed to talk to a few people in person, but this would jump start her renewed search. The truth was that, so far, she did not have any information that indicated this man was a pervert or nutcase, only his recent actions with Lori. And those were mainly hearsay by a teenager known to have a vivid imagination.

After dinner, Gareth casually told Glenn he was going out to meet friends. He made a quiet call on his cell, then walked down the street to get his car from the garage, texting along the way. He was going to meet Holly Ferguson and, he hoped, get a first kiss from her. First, second, and third, in fact. If Lori was not available (and it seemed she never would be), he was happy to date Holly; she was a good kid, even if a little wild. But then, he was wild, too.

Next update: The Lassiters Ch. 6 The Twins Are Growing Up Pt. 3

For more of Gareth Caswell's continuing story including his life at University go HERE



Sim Girl said...

Awww He's all... big now LOL . Ooo love a good cliff hanger :)

Lorelei said...

Yeah, it was hard to let him grow up, but if I didn't all his friends would be ahead of him. They're all so inter-related. Hope I can keep it up with the cliff hanger. I'm making this up as I go along! Sometimes I manipulate the game and sometimes it manipulates me lol