Scotti Lynn Ferguson was finding high school a very enjoyable experience, thank you very much. One of the new friends she brought over was Brooks Generica, a newcomer to town. She liked him a lot, but not romantically, at least not now.
She was still very close to both her parents, but especially to Scott and, being an only child, they were especially indulgent with her while still trying to keep her fairly unspoiled.
Later the same week Brooks’ brother, Brand, came home with her on the bus. They played video games and he stayed to supper. Afterward they listened to music and played RPS. Again, she really got along well with Brand, but so far she felt no special attraction to him. To Scotti Lynn he was just a very nice boy, like his brother.
A couple days later Scotti Lynn looked through the front window and saw Damon Ottomas walking slowly by the house. He hesitated at the gate and looked up at the house. That was enough for Scotti Lynn—she’d had a crush on him for a while. She hurried out and invited him in for grilled cheese sandwiches and some SSX3. She got up to get drinks for both of them but before she even got ice in the glasses he called to her from the living room. Taking her hands when she walked in, Damon smiled shyly (but with a slightly wicked curve to one side of his mouth).
They forgot they were thirsty and sat on the love seat. When Damon put his arm around her, Scotti Lynn’s eyes got big. Would he kiss her? Not his time, evidently. Good thing, she supposed as she closed the door behind him, since her parents were both upstairs in bed reading and the house was very quiet. Next time (oh, there had to be a next time!) she’d put on loud music well before her parents retired to their bedroom. If it was still summer they could have sneaked out to the patio, but not tonight.
Recently there had been a spate of break-ins where the perpetrators had done nothing but vandalize paintings, especially the ones painted by one or more family members. These were priceless to the home owners since they were mostly of family and home. Harvey and Lori Ferguson had wakened one morning to find two of their portraits that they had brought with them from the Lassiter and Ferguson homes had turned to some sort of pop art version of sunrise. Evidently the originals had been spray painted over, although so neatly that no paint even got on the frames. The same thing occurred to several other residents of Pleasantview, and nearly all instances were of paintings that had been moved from one house to another. After hearing that, Heather and Scott decided to start taking a photo inventory of their current paintings, to at least have them on record.
Scott was finishing up an earlier painting of Scotti Lynn he’d started just before her birthday and Heather was starting a current portrait of her. It took several "sittings".
Waiting for the school bus Scotti Lynn often played her hand-held game. Like most teens she was a voracious gamer.
On one of her first out of town excursions since being allowed to use the car she went shopping in Bluewater at Amelia’s Closet. While there she ran into her Aunt Madeleine and saw another boy from school. She didn’t know Vic Severino Jr very well, but as they talked she thought him kind of cute and wondered if he might be fun to go out with sometime. When she left the store she decided she might as well be adventurous and go to the Galaxy Arcade. On her way out of the store there was a sneaky looking man skulking around the building. She walked fast and he didn’t follow her to her car.
When she got to the Arcade she had only been there a little while when in came her cousin, Harvey Ferguson. She really liked Harvey, but still it occurred to Scotti Lynn that if she ever did decide to sneak out of the house some night it seemed there would always be some family member around to squeal on her. She didn’t count Harvey’s kid sister, Debbie, of course, since Debbie would probably be the one she sneaked out with--if she ever did.
One Saturday Scotti Lynn woke up especially excited for the day to begin. Her Uncle Shep, Aunt Madeleine and cousin Debbie were coming over for the day. Shep was Scott’s big brother. Debbie and Scotti Lynn went to school together but were especially tight because of the family connection.
While Scotti Lynn and Debbie hung out in Scotti Lynn’s room, Scott and Shep played chess downstairs and Heather and Madeleine talked turkey. Literally. They both liked to cook and it was fall, not that long before Thanksgiving Day. Scott was the prize-winning chef in the family having gone to culinary school after retiring from the police force, but Heather had long been known in Pleasantview as an excellent home cook along with her sister-in-law Madeleine Ferguson, Melora Lassiter, Gillian Blackford and Yvette Wilson. Melora, of course, had even had her own cooking show on The Food Channel years ago.
When Scotti Lynn had once asked why Uncle Shep looked so much older than her father, Heather replied that he was, indeed, quite a bit older than Scott, who’d been the baby of their family. Scotti Lynn already knew that her mother was somewhat older than her father, but it didn’t seem to make any difference. He appeared to be crazy about her and, it was true, she looked much younger than she actually was.
Upstairs the girls talked about the Generica boys only to discover Debbie had a crush on Brooks. Luckily Scotti Lynn was not “that way” about either boy—she was more into Damon Ottomas who seemed to consider her just a nice girl from his Physics class. They decided they would never try to lure away any boy from each other, and sealed the deal with a pillow fight. They hadn’t had one of those since they were children.
Shep’s family stayed through supper and while the girls did the dishes, Scott and Shep sparred and joked the way men do. Sort of like little boys, as a matter of fact, Madeleine commented to Heather. By around 9 pm the guests were on their way back home.
Sunday the family would be visiting Scotti Lynn’s half-sister, Jenna, and her husband and twin daughters. Technically Janice and Jessamyn were Scotti Lynn’s nieces even though they were the same age. Jenna and Scotti Lynn had the same mother, Heather, but not the same father. Scott, of course, was Scotti Lynn’s dad, but no one knew who Jenna’s father was. Scotti Lynn knew that Heather obviously had that information, so probably Scott did, too, but she wondered if, after all this time, even Jenna knew who her father was. Possibly she did, but no one ever talked about him; Jenna's unknown father was the elephant in the room that they all ignored. Scotti Lynn didn’t even know whether her mother had been widowed, divorced or never married when she married Scott. Sometimes it did trouble her...
Next Update: Shep Ferguson Ch. 7 The Rest of the Clan Pt. 6
Next Update: Shep Ferguson Ch. 7 The Rest of the Clan Pt. 6