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Redfall Loves You All
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Writer Bobby Coxx
  • G: General Audiences
  • PG: Parental Guidance Suggested
  • PG-13: Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • R: Restricted
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Redfall Loves You All
A - A - A
3. Father
Bobby Coxx
Dec 6, 2015
16 Mins Read
No Plagiarism!sFKig6fYbhm6TheWZgzSposted on PENANA

Danny Fitzgeraldcopyright protection66PENANA8QUPs0nrBm

-Quarterback and Senior Captain of the Redtails Football Teamcopyright protection66PENANAC42mnitChF

-Lead Tenor in the Redfall A Capella Choircopyright protection66PENANAUELOVZKVgk

Danny woke up to a crash and the sound of raised voices. He rolled over and sat up on the side of his bed, and he rubbed his eyes until he could see straight. His dad yelled, his mom yelled, and his sister tried yelling over them both. He stumbled out of his room into the hallway.copyright protection66PENANANoaHdCIA4j

“You’re defending her, Mary! She was out with that kid again, I smell the liquor on her breath!” His dad brandished a baseball bat and screamed at his mom, who was holding Rosie, Danny’s sobbing sister.copyright protection66PENANAXGo03Lixoz

“That’s the liquor on your breath, you piece of shit!” his mom yelled. “Put the bat down, you’re scaring her!”copyright protection66PENANAcieY69XR5d

Danny ran down the stairs. “Hey!” He yelled, and stepped in front of his mom and sister. “Dad, I have practice in the morning. Put the bat down.”copyright protection66PENANAbSClAQYir3

“How about you go upstairs, Danny? This is none of your business,” his dad slurred.copyright protection66PENANACoJ0pNLHk9

“It is my business,” Danny said. “You’re down here screaming, swinging a bat at my mom and my sister, how the hell is that not my business?”copyright protection66PENANAhxsvvzFtrL

“Honey, don’t worry about it. The police are already on the way,” his mom said.copyright protection66PENANAHCDjYeaXwB

“Your sister was out drinking with that fucking kid again,” his dad said. “I told her to stop seeing him, and she fucking disobeyed me!” He swung the bat into the wall, as if to demonstrate.copyright protection66PENANA090K9pxV7S

Zack thrust out his jaw and ran into the kitchen. He stood on his toes and reached above the refrigerator, groping around. He finally found the family’s handgun, and he ran back into the hall.copyright protection66PENANA5ppyVV7Apy

“Dad,” he said, raising the gun in the air. “Put the baseball bat down. Don’t make me point this thing at you.”copyright protection66PENANAm7bZq9eB6L

“You’re gonna pull a gun on your own dad?”copyright protection66PENANAc7UcR4CpZJ

“You’re drunk as fuck, you’re scaring Mom and Rosie. You need to drop the damn bat,” Danny said calmly.copyright protection66PENANAh58HD3DKE2

His dad looked as if he was going to protest, but a flash of blue lights from outside cut him off.copyright protection66PENANAj09u0AEfbL

“Fuck,” he muttered. “Danny, take this and throw it back in the garage,” he said, holding out the baseball bat. “I’m gonna go put some of the liquor away.”copyright protection66PENANA0oSVAKZc9Z

Danny did as he was told. He opened the door to the garage and threw the bat inside, and he placed the handgun back on top of the fridge just as a policeman knocked on the door.copyright protection66PENANAWq458H9LrO

“RPD,” the cop announced. Danny’s mom opened the door.copyright protection66PENANANLPXgQxU5J

“Let’s make this quick,” Danny said sullenly. “I have to lift in the morning.”copyright protection66PENANAF57y1Ii0Vs

***copyright protection66PENANAZRS3X1K6Mc

“Holy shit,” Elaina said. “So what happened?”copyright protection66PENANAUAXJxdz58E

Danny shrugged, and kicked a rock along the sidewalk as they walked, arm in arm. “The cop who responded first was kind of a dick. He wanted to arrest my dad and he put me in handcuffs for ‘tampering with evidence’ when I threw the bat in the garage. But you know the other cop I think, Tony?”copyright protection66PENANAOOKWmLEFMz

Elaina nodded. “He’s my cousin’s godfather.”copyright protection66PENANA7Lr0Po1AuN

Danny nodded. “Right, he was really cool about the whole thing. He made sure nobody got arrested, it was all a big misunderstanding.”copyright protection66PENANAMpnK8VYI06

Elaina bit her lip.copyright protection66PENANAmPU7LhTpXF

“What?” Danny said.copyright protection66PENANAZ4rr4hP6Rk

“That doesn’t sound like a misunderstanding, Danny,” said Elaina. “That sounds like domestic violence.”copyright protection66PENANATEJhpRcnAd

Danny shook his head. “No, that’s not how it happened. He was never going to hurt anybody, and he knew I wouldn’t actually shoot him.”copyright protection66PENANAuW2p4NGYdE

“I mean…” Elaina said, clearly not convinced.copyright protection66PENANADcI5DNntTe

“He pulls that shit all the time. It’s not a big deal,” Danny said, “really.”copyright protection66PENANANNTx4iphFZ

“Although,” he said, “lifting sucked this morning, and I’m sure practice won’t be much better.”copyright protection66PENANAuaVwz0kgYx

“Alright…” Elaina made herself smile cheerfully. “At least I don’t have any morning practices.”copyright protection66PENANAUCKDIoq5Rk

Danny snorted. “Just Chess Club,” he said, smirking.copyright protection66PENANAkF7dccvBtb

“What’s wrong with Chess Club?” Elaina said, cracking a real smile.copyright protection66PENANAAYmwvVxPbv

“Nothing,” Danny shrugged. “It’s just that you party so hard that sometimes I forget I’m dating a nerd.”copyright protection66PENANAn688JQwaVo

“Never forget,” Elaina said, beaming proudly. “Are you still coming over tonight?”copyright protection66PENANAug3BtgOZRi

Danny nodded. “As soon as I shower after practice.”copyright protection66PENANAbsgxYMtwBF

Elaina wrinkled her nose. “Please do.” They kissed goodbye. “I’ll see you then.”copyright protection66PENANA1ZL97u0EEW

***copyright protection66PENANA29c5KGlzFd

“What’s your plan?” Zack said.copyright protection66PENANARRF7pETSav

Preston shrugged. “You want something to eat? I’m not ready to write that history paper just yet.”copyright protection66PENANAxcvimDNmhs

Zack’s stomach rumbled.copyright protection66PENANAijBvpmbLVR

“Well, I guess that settles it,” said Zack.copyright protection66PENANAYMIEU7jO0u

The two sat on the otherwise empty bleachers by the football field. Football practice had finished late due to the quickly approaching playoffs, and marching band practice had ended early. Zack and Preston for once found themselves with schedules that matched up so they could fight their boredom together.copyright protection66PENANAjxHPQ3sEqJ

Zack’s phone rang in his pocket; he pulled it out and answered it. “Hold up,” he said to Preston, “it’s Elaina.”copyright protection66PENANA6J2Hes3pdZ

Hey, Zack?” Elaina said.copyright protection66PENANAgcLZQF7at7

“Elaina, what’s going on?”copyright protection66PENANAENFlCvp49Q

Have you seen Danny?” she said. She sounded worried.copyright protection66PENANAOgzRXOj1dw

“I saw him practicing about half an hour ago I think, hold on,” said Zack. “Preston, have you seen Danny?”copyright protection66PENANA0uIMtzrBJV

Preston shook his head. “I hit the shower about ten minutes before he did, I haven’t talked to him since this afternoon.”copyright protection66PENANAIoIoKlUaq3

“Nah, Preston hasn’t really either,” Zack said into his phone. “What’s the matter?”copyright protection66PENANA0ekz5hnojB

Are you guys still at the high school?” Elaina said.copyright protection66PENANAVk6E6AdybX

 “Yeah, at the turf,” Zack said. “Why?”copyright protection66PENANAtUmci7xchY

Stay put, I’ll be there in five minutes,” she said, and hung up before Zack could speak.copyright protection66PENANAghcARiSfHb

Preston raised an eyebrow as Zack pulled a corner of his mouth back in annoyance.copyright protection66PENANAQCwXgDxubI

“She says she’s coming to meet us,” Zack said.copyright protection66PENANAsFCORUVp7c

Preston sighed and laid down on the metal bench. Zack sat down next to him, stomach growling. The cold metal was uncomfortable to say the least, and Zack found himself wishing he had worn gloves.copyright protection66PENANAnnuAXlSQAA

But Elaina, true to her word, did not take more than five minutes to arrive. Preston pointed to her as she walked down the hill from the parking lot. “She lives further away than that,” he said. “She must have already been on the road when she called you.”copyright protection66PENANA2rcyotbWXn

Elaina walked quickly, head down, jaw set. She checked her phone every ten or twenty steps, as if she was waiting for a message that could come in at any second. Zack nodded to her as she climbed the steps up to the bleachers. She wore more makeup on than usual, but tastefully, and she had straightened her hair since Zack had seen her in class earlier that day.copyright protection66PENANAEp2heTcajj

“What’s the matter?”copyright protection66PENANAnHGRiEdbuO

She shoved her hands in her pockets once she stopped walking. “Neither of you have seen Danny?” she said.copyright protection66PENANALxgX5FrhBo

Zack looked at Preston.copyright protection66PENANAEgOGx3AJdU

“Why are you so worried?” said Preston. “I saw him at practice a little while ago.”copyright protection66PENANA2ABJsToG4T

“We were supposed to hang out tonight, but he texted me and cancelled a few minutes ago,” Elaina said. “He didn’t say why, now he won’t pick up his phone.”copyright protection66PENANAuQqLOwqfN2

“Maybe it’s dead?” Zack suggested.copyright protection66PENANADris8PvIyJ

“Maybe he has a side chick,” Preston said with a wry smile.copyright protection66PENANACBkelM8Jtc

Elaina shook her head. “I think his dad started drinking again. I’m worried guys, no lie. Did he tell you what happened last night?”copyright protection66PENANADX33JRz96n

Preston and Zack both nodded.copyright protection66PENANAbKOtcWjIFS

“And you’re not concerned?” she said.copyright protection66PENANAriuLwPyEz1

Preston and Zack looked at each other. “You’ve known him longer,” said Preston.copyright protection66PENANARcZUgILQSS

“Elaina, Mr. Fitzgerald does that kinda stuff all the time,” Zack explained. “He gets drunk and he yells, but he’s never actually hurt anybody.”copyright protection66PENANAd4C2yOZRxF

“Zack, that’s not a normal family dynamic,” Elaina said.copyright protection66PENANAKYXeKt3j8C

Preston laughed. “We’re not arguing with you there. That’s just how they are.”copyright protection66PENANAkZPkU63GWV

“Preston, I fucking hate my dad. I know something about this,” said Elaina, growing agitated. “And Danny and I have been dating for two years; I’ve seen him argue with his family before. But he had to pull a gun last night.”copyright protection66PENANAyaZacyZcqw

“Hey, c’mon,” said Zack. “No need to get hostile.”copyright protection66PENANARavOogirzq

Elaina sat down on the bench and crossed her arms. “Sorry. I’m just worried that something happened.”copyright protection66PENANA4UqUek0h1X

“Listen, I’ll tell you what. Why don’t we take a ride and go find him? Did you already stop by his house?” Preston said.copyright protection66PENANAdz7dKkLKwb

Elaina nodded. “Nobody was home.”copyright protection66PENANAholMdK3vbC

“Listen, Elaina. We’re about to go grab some dinner. Why don’t you come with us?” said Zack. “It’ll help get your mind off of it, I’m sure Danny will call you back before we even finish eating.”copyright protection66PENANAWgwnbLIb2J

Elaina shook her head. “I have some homework to do, I should just get home.”copyright protection66PENANA8gjgt3AeN6

“Are you sure?” said Preston.copyright protection66PENANAq4vMRIwVeI

Elaina smiled sadly. “Yeah, it’s fine. You guys will call me if you hear anything, right?” she said.copyright protection66PENANAxaZ4yaPgmS

Zack nodded. “You know it,” he said. “Just try not to worry, alright? Have a snack or something, you’ll feel better.”copyright protection66PENANA0v8jLBnlQb

Elaina gave him a hug, and then hugged Preston goodbye as well. “You guys are the best. I’ll see you tomorrow.”copyright protection66PENANArhgW38Fz3T

Preston waited until she walked away. “You remember that time Mr. Fitzgerald got bit by that stray cat?”copyright protection66PENANAhA4gFCrvTN

Zack grinned, eyes wide. “I was at Danny’s house that night!” he said laughing. “Or how about the time he had to bail Rosie’s boyfriend out of jail?”copyright protection66PENANAnTivd37BoY

Preston barked out a laugh. “I was surprised he wasn’t more angry, but damn; he must have made that kid wash his car a hundred times that summer!”copyright protection66PENANAMQf2NiasRd

Zack shook his head. “I don’t blame Elaina for being worried, but Mr. Fitz is actually a pretty good guy.”copyright protection66PENANAm9Oqqu2RZW

“He’s just got some vices,” Preston agreed.copyright protection66PENANAFmQXS310Ep

Zack’s stomach grumbled again. “…Burgers?”copyright protection66PENANAYrgdt4vEwn

“Every time.”copyright protection66PENANASTxHjXbmPb

***copyright protection66PENANAiuy9sqctrR

Zack lay on his couch, listening to the rain and staring at his biology textbook.copyright protection66PENANATpi9CMd8rK

“Preston, you know anything about mitosis?” he said.copyright protection66PENANAvjD21X0djP

Preston shook his head. “You know anything about the Dark Ages?”copyright protection66PENANAoCkXLMnYfO

“No electricity?” said Zack.copyright protection66PENANAP8e8iQVvZm

Preston laughed. “I think I’ll just-” he was interrupted by a series of loud bangs on the front door.copyright protection66PENANAguGUxIRyWa

Zack frowned. “Hold that thought.”copyright protection66PENANAokNIhyuFwK

He walked into the other room and opened the front door, and was surprised when Danny stumbled inside out of the rain. Water dripped from his hair, and his clothes were soaked.copyright protection66PENANAumSIvbzqGy

“Holy shit dude, did you just walk here?” said Zack.copyright protection66PENANANX3uRBdIa9

“My mom took the car,” Danny mumbled.copyright protection66PENANATyuGgMeLrL

“Hang on, I’ll grab you a towel,” Zack said. He ran to the bathroom as Preston walked into the front room.copyright protection66PENANAvW8oFDzf4g

“Danny! What the hell happened, man? What are you doing here?” Preston said.copyright protection66PENANAOSdRm5tAND

Danny shrugged.copyright protection66PENANAJGcdntZBer

“What’s that supposed to mean?” Preston said.copyright protection66PENANAnKnv938Jic

“Here,” said Zack, handing Danny a towel. “Have you talked to Elaina?” he said. “She was worried about you man. What’s going on?”copyright protection66PENANA064dYrjs16

“Listen, Preston,” said Danny, absently drying himself. “I was gonna have Zack drive but you have a car here. Can I get a ride to the hospital?”copyright protection66PENANA5KNiYaLXMZ

“The hospital?” said Preston, wide eyed. “What’s wrong?”copyright protection66PENANAp9KMETQNC8

Danny shook his head. “I’m fine, my mom’s just got my truck.”copyright protection66PENANA0Ce5QdwaFy

“Why do you have to go to the hospital?” Zack said.copyright protection66PENANAgLj43heOf1

Danny shook his head again. “My dad cracked up his car is all. He’s fine I guess, I just need a ride. Help me out?”copyright protection66PENANAOEayrPrhD4

“Shit man, yeah. You should have called me, I would have picked you up. Let’s go,” said Preston, pulling out his keys.copyright protection66PENANApDHEJyRfIw

“You want me to come?” said Zack.copyright protection66PENANAOZh74lpj9F

Danny shook his head. “Really man, it’s fine. I just need a ride is all.”copyright protection66PENANAkXjvvKkX1Y

“Alright, good luck.” Zack and Danny bumped fists. “I’ll see you tomorrow, give me a call afterwards.”copyright protection66PENANA2rBK6kjYA2

“Will do, said Danny. He stepped outside after Preston and shut the door behind him.copyright protection66PENANAup1Mx68Wph

***copyright protection66PENANABJeVeKFyIH

“Have you talked to Elaina yet?” Preston said over the sound of the rain hitting the roof of the car.copyright protection66PENANAwL98vftOd4

Danny shook his head. “My phone’s dead. Besides, she was really worried about my dad earlier. If I tell her he crashed his car then she’ll just assume he was drinking or something.”copyright protection66PENANAQItSv0YDWn

“He wasn’t?” said Preston.copyright protection66PENANAVy6atlU9UD

Danny spun. “No, he wasn’t! Fuck you, man!”copyright protection66PENANARro0zTg3It

“Hey, I’m driving your sorry ass there,” said Preston. “Relax, I wasn’t implying anything.”copyright protection66PENANA7zcAsIBrly

Danny exhaled. “Sorry, man. I’m stressed is all.”copyright protection66PENANAOh6VrAglJa

Preston frowned, and made a left turn.copyright protection66PENANAZACnBbhRf0

“Preston, the hospital’s the other way,” said Danny.copyright protection66PENANAlmAyX2gytC

“I know, I gotta make a quick stop first.”copyright protection66PENANA6iTddkNuGx

Danny sulked but didn’t complain. He groaned when Preston pulled up to Elaina’s house and parked.copyright protection66PENANAFF8h3JtkAJ

“Go inside and explain what happened to her and then we’ll go,” said Preston.copyright protection66PENANAlV5Vt3XKCr

“I don’t have time for this,” said Danny.copyright protection66PENANAmJJfWXAKsg

“Yes you do, explain fast,” said Preston.copyright protection66PENANAh7WqpZ9TkJ

Danny glared at him, but after a minute he got out of the car. He ran up to Elaina’s door and knocked.copyright protection66PENANACFFIB9LzTn

Preston pulled out his phone while he waited.copyright protection66PENANA0g7Jw3G6O9

After a minute Elaina opened the door. She gave Danny a big hug, despite his wet clothes.copyright protection66PENANAm5hjvGiFAD

“Danny, what happened?” she said. “Are you alright?”copyright protection66PENANAodi4VUeHt8

Danny nodded. “Yeah, I’m fine.” He sighed. “Can I get a ride to the hospital? I’ll explain on the way.”copyright protection66PENANA5tocdUgU14

***copyright protection66PENANA3oakHG1ZlB

“He was drinking,” said Elaina. She held the wheel with two hands, squinting through the heavy rain.copyright protection66PENANADKPVPLQ3tj

“No, he wasn’t drinking,” said Danny. “It was an old car, and a guy coming the other way swerved and my dad just lost control.”copyright protection66PENANAbyNAL0u2Uv

Elaina remained silent.copyright protection66PENANA6YUgiBXjBi

“You… you thought something happened to me,” said Danny.copyright protection66PENANAVe3LaSw0VZ

“Danny, you pulled a gun on him last night. Yeah, when you cancelled on me and stopped responding I assumed something happened.”copyright protection66PENANAk7y7Hk8cm2

Danny pulled out his phone. “It’s just dead, see? Don’t worry, everybody’s fine. We even talked it out last night, we’re cool.”copyright protection66PENANAIs0CJjdGCO

“But he is drinking again,” she said.copyright protection66PENANAZy32jdUPeQ

Danny laughed. “He never stopped drinking. He’s just drinking a little more than usual. It’s not his fault, he got laid off a week ago.”copyright protection66PENANAPyXnFEHNR4

“He got laid off?” said Elaina. “You didn’t tell me that.”copyright protection66PENANAQzwRbgapXN

Danny shrugged. “I guess I just didn’t want to advertise it.”copyright protection66PENANAeWmhZFuTvJ

Elaina pulled into the hospital lot and parked.copyright protection66PENANAJkhHIXmqLd

Danny unbuckled his seatbelt. “Are you coming in?” he said, as casually as he could.copyright protection66PENANAuCM1tYiEnf

Elaina tried not to wince. He wouldn’t have asked if it weren’t important to him.copyright protection66PENANArCcNTbto5Z

“Yeah, I’ll come in,” she said, doing her best to smile. They got out of the car and walked into the hospital in the rain, holding hands as they went.copyright protection66PENANA7Okpw2mSt7

***copyright protection66PENANA6YJT0dRjRf

Mr. Fitzgerald’s room was on the third floor; they took the elevator. Danny had not been in a hospital since he had broken his arm in the fourth grade, but the vaguely familiar antiseptic smell overwhelmed him. The long halls with their bright artificial light just seemed so… alien.copyright protection66PENANAyjRL7LWA91

“I hate hospitals,” Elaina whispered.copyright protection66PENANAzhQTGnW2gq

They walked down the hall all the way to the end, room 301. Danny went in without bothering to knock. Mrs. Fitzgerald and Rosie sat in chairs near Mr. Fitzgerald’s bed, and the patient himself sat up laughing.copyright protection66PENANAamoUfp77IY

“Hey!” he said, smiling at Danny. “Good to see you, kid!”copyright protection66PENANAmhie2p0Z0a

“How you feeling?” said Danny, stepping further into the room. Elaina stood behind him, smiling politely at Rosie and Mrs. Fitzgerald.copyright protection66PENANA1ArSt8fqbv

“I’m feeling fine, the bastards are making me stay overnight though. They say I have a concussion, but it’s not bad. The car’s completely fucked, so it could have been a lot worse.”copyright protection66PENANAQlSff7Enen

Gene,” Mrs. Fitzgerald said, reproachingly.copyright protection66PENANAmBEEQH3QG4

“What?” said Mr. Fitzgerald. “It’s true, the car’s fucked. It’s not gonna drive again.”copyright protection66PENANA0IEsA8AQyL

“Elaina’s here. Don’t swear!” said Mrs. Fitzgerald.copyright protection66PENANAlp7dFnlkKA

“Oh, sorry,” he said. “Nice to see you, Elaina,” he said.copyright protection66PENANAH6cmK33OTK

“I’m glad you’re okay,” said Elaina, smiling.copyright protection66PENANATUsxm2FXSe

Mr. Fitzgerald snorted. “Are you? Danny told me you don’t like me very much.”copyright protection66PENANAJeEQskdOEX

Dad!” said Danny, turning red.copyright protection66PENANAom4BIPELEx

“No, that’s not true,” said Elaina, embarrassed. “I…”copyright protection66PENANAwxsY4P0KMT

Mr. Fitzgerald laughed. “It’s fine, don’t worry about it. Actually,” he said, turning to his family, “can I talk to her in private for a minute?”copyright protection66PENANAZw8DmAXApC

“Dad, I dunno if…” Danny started and trailed off.copyright protection66PENANAyNYCpHs3t6

“It’s fine, don’t worry,” said Elaina. She touched his arm. Danny met her eyes and shot her an apologetic look, and he followed his mother and sister outside.copyright protection66PENANABZD3XITYtG

Mr. Fitzgerald shrugged. “You don’t have to like me, you know. Plenty of people don’t.”copyright protection66PENANARsc06yB480

“No really, I just…” Elaina said. Mr. Fitzgerald interrupted her.copyright protection66PENANAGGOFjdmLgP

“Danny probably told you about our argument last night, huh?”copyright protection66PENANARROvVLeOKH

Elaina nodded, silent.copyright protection66PENANAuB9GCffdjo

“I’ll be honest, Elaina, that’s why I’m glad that you and Danny are together,” said Mr. Fitzgerald.copyright protection66PENANAd052Fof2aw

She listened.copyright protection66PENANAR2oGxjrL8b

“He thinks he’s tough,” said Mr. Fitzgerald, “but he can’t do it all on his own. He still needs somebody to look out for him, you know?”copyright protection66PENANAsDNCjqRzDb

Elaina opened her mouth, but she couldn’t think of the right response. She nodded.copyright protection66PENANAXRc2TRq8TB

“I… I don’t always do a great job looking out for him, you know?” said Mr. Fitzgerald, looking away. “That’s why… I’m glad he’s got you. You’re a great girl, Elaina, don’t let me scare you away,” he said.copyright protection66PENANAFLD3ranTWv

“Thanks,” was all she could think to say.copyright protection66PENANA5p9T1sjT1W

***copyright protection66PENANA5ZOh1H9sQ3

“What did he say to you?” said Danny, as they walked back to her car, arm in arm.copyright protection66PENANA3vPGzgRWaO

Elaina shrugged. “It’s not important,” she lied. “But Zack and Preston were right,” she said after a second.copyright protection66PENANAsfdB9f4s96

“Zack and Preston?” said Danny.copyright protection66PENANApf5dw7UGzL

She nodded. “They said your dad isn’t such a bad guy after all. I think they were right.”copyright protection66PENANAKCgzjQQaN0

Danny smiled. “Well, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, does it?”copyright protection66PENANAYfgcRpsWRB

Elaina barked out a laugh. “Wow. I hope to God that’s not how it works.”copyright protection66PENANA2hQ8unfp3P

Danny laughed and got in the passenger seat of her car.copyright protection66PENANAaOsrnLheW4

“Hey, thanks a lot for the ride,” he said. “It doesn’t look like I’ll have a car for a little while.”copyright protection66PENANAeVku7cTz8L

“It’s no problem,” Elaina said, smiling. The rain had even started to let up.copyright protection66PENANAbb22kxpzWt

“I have to look out for you, right?”copyright protection66PENANAo7hQyFCQTy

***copyright protection66PENANAV8tfDBsxbA

“That’s… quite a story,” said Rita.copyright protection66PENANAinMlp6SOFP

“I’m telling you, you can’t make this stuff up,” said Zack. They sat on her floor, their backs against her bed, listening to a record. He threw a piece of popcorn in the air and she caught it in her mouth.copyright protection66PENANAi4WAVvfym9

“I almost feel like I missed out,” she said. She threw a piece to Zack; it bounced off of his chin.copyright protection66PENANA6hhAxUbZrn

“When the whole Fitzgerald family gets involved it gets complicated fast,” he agreed. “They really are good people though. Even Danny. He’s an asshole half the time, but the guy would do anything for you. Two incoming.” He threw two pieces of popcorn at her, one after the other- she opened her mouth caught them both effortlessly.copyright protection66PENANAAKKm69sYY8

“Damn,” he said. “How are you so good at that?”copyright protection66PENANAOgdLQ8g6GD

“Years of practice,” she said with a wink.copyright protection66PENANAfNUxnrszqU

“I’m glad Danny’s family is so different though,” she said after a minute. “I feel like he wouldn’t be as interesting if his dad was an accountant who went to bed at eight o’clock every night.”copyright protection66PENANAX0EHnLRPJP

Zack laughed. “I dunno how Elaina feels about all of it, but I agree with you.”copyright protection66PENANAXy6bjXjA30

Rita sighed. “Elaina and Danny are perfect for each other,” she said wistfully.copyright protection66PENANAdjO7QcziM0

“I hope they get married,” Zack said. “You and me can go and get drunk as fuck at their wedding and then dance all night.”copyright protection66PENANAcJ1RroCidm

Rita laughed, but stopped after a second. “You know, that actually sounds like the perfect night,” she said, a twinkle in her eye.copyright protection66PENANA8bVemebGPf

Zack smiled and looked away… he grabbed a piece of popcorn from the bowl and threw it without looking. “Hey!” she said.copyright protection66PENANAH2yvaoIJHu

She caught it anyway. copyright protection66PENANAJUdKME8oXm

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