Chapter 11

Rhapsody

I walked into the dark restaurant at close to 6:30. Looking around I didn’t see my mother right away. There was a haze that hung in the air giving it a gloomy feel. Vaping was allowed in this restaurant because it was the trendy thing to do. When I didn’t see my mother after a few more minutes I walked up to the hostess stand. The ultra-skinny woman looked at me.

“That bitch needs to eat a cheeseburger.” Queen B said.

I shook my head then asked. “Has Aurora Cinderella arrived?”

The woman gave me a bothered look. She looked down at the tablet in her hand then said, “What was the name?”

I sighed. “Aurora Cinderella.” My mother insisted on using aliases at all times.

She checked her list again but before she could say anything I heard something that made me cringe. “Little Beaver! Little Beaver! Over here sweetie.”

My shoulders slumped at the screeching of a nickname that made me want to crawl into a hole and die. I looked over to the woman wearing a t-shirt, leather pants and a boa. On top of her head she wore large sunglasses holding back her mane of wild curls. Subtlety was not my mother’s forte.

“That’s her. Thanks.” I said.

Navigating between tables, I found my way to my mother who had worked herself up so much she was bouncing on her toes as I approached. I glared at her but, she either ignored my glare or didn’t see it through the haze.

“Mom! Sit down.” I whisper yelled.

“I’m so happy to see you little beaver.”

“Good God! Will you quit it with that nickname? It was never cute or funny.”

She waved her hand signaling for another drink. “Oh stop. It is adorable. You had the cutest buck teeth when you were little. Thank goodness your grandmother got those fixed for you.” She made a face imitating a beaver.

I sighed. “Why am I here mom?”

“Don’t you want a drink?” She noticed my lack of alcoholic beverage.

“I have to work in the morning. I will stick with water.” I said smoothly.

“Live a little, Rhapsody. I can’t believe I have such a boring daughter. Your cousin, Cassie is so much fun.”

I rolled my eyes. “Then why didn’t you ask her for dinner instead of me?”

She squinted her eyes at me. “Because you’re my daughter and I need something specific from you.”

“Of course, you do. What is it now?”

The waitress approached asking for our order. My mother ordered a steak and potato. I stuck with a salad with dressing on the side. My stomach wasn’t doing well with the mixture of smells and it seemed like a safer bet to have a salad.

“Watching your weight?” She asked.

“Sure. So, what was it you need from me?”

My mother leaned forward. “Blue Vengeance is getting inducted into the Rock ‘n Roll hall of fame.”

I took a sip of my water. I’d already heard about them getting the nod this year. It was a hell of an accomplishment for them. It always surprised me they were capable to stay together for over twenty-five years, but my mother couldn’t put the effort to care when I was growing up.

“Congratulations, mom.” I said flatly.

“You need to be there.” She said.

When she said that I was drinking my water and managed to inhale some. The water had nowhere to go but out my nose. It burned making my eyes water. I grabbed a napkin to wipe my face. My mother cackled at me.

She wiped a tear from her eye then said, “You’re always a good time, Rhapsody. So, you’re going.”

It wasn’t a question. “Why the hell do you want me there?”

“You’re my daughter. How would it look if my only daughter wasn’t there?”

“It would look like we don’t have a relationship.” I said crossing my arms.

“We have a relationship.” She snapped.

“Oh really? Where do I work then?”

My mother blinked at me. “How would I know that? That doesn’t mean anything.”

“Yeah, well it means something to me. I am not going. Why don’t you just pretend Cassie is your daughter?   I know you’ve done that before. “

I stood from the table. My emotions started to take over my body. I felt out of control. I needed to go home to a pint of B & J and some trashy tv. Throwing my napkin back on the table I walked away from my stunned mother. A weight lifted from my shoulders as I exited the restaurant and hailed a cab.

***

A soft knock on my door had me pausing a spoon to my lips. My grandmother eased the door open. She shuffled in and sat on the edge of my bed.

“Are you ok, sweetie?” She patted my knee.

All I wanted to do in that moment was crawl in her lap and tell her everything. Tell her about how horrible my mother, her daughter, was to me. Tell her how she was going to be a great grandmother. Tell her how I didn’t even really know the baby’s daddy. Instead I shoved the spoonful of ice cream in my mouth to stop those things from spilling out.

“Your mother called.” She said taking the remote and shutting the tv off.

I sighed. “I’m not going, Grams.”

“Why not?”

I snorted. “There are too many reasons to count.”

“Don’t sass me, Rhapsody.” She snapped.

“Fine. Why should I be there for her when she hasn’t been there for us?”

My grandmother nodded. “You’re right. My daughter has not been the mother I would have liked her to be to you. But, that doesn’t mean you act like her. You are better than that.” Grams sighed. “Her entire life has been to make it as a star. Now, she is getting recognized for it. I want you to be there for her. She wouldn’t say this, but I think it would break her heart if you weren’t.”

I pinched my hand to keep from rolling my eyes. “Grams, she didn’t even invite you. Her own mother. Aren’t you hurt at all about this?”

A sad smile crossed her face. “Your mom and I have our own issues. It’s ok if she only wants her daughter there. I’m actually quite proud that she wants you there.”

“I’m just a trophy for her to show off.”

She reached up and pushed a stray hair behind my ear. “Then be the shiniest trophy you can be.”

I smiled and felt my unruly emotions roaring back. “Alright, Grams. I will go.”

She stood and leaned over placing a kiss on my forehead. “That’s my girl.”

My grandmother shuffled out of my room shutting the door quietly behind her. With a sigh I put my pint of ice cream on my night stand and grabbed my phone.

Me: I’ll go.

Mom: Thanks, little beaver! This is going to be a blast!

I seriously doubted that statement.

Chapter 12–>

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