The kitchen door was closed and I knew what that meant. I knew trouble was coming and the yelling would start soon. I tried to tiptoe as quickly as I could down the hall to my room with nobody listening, I could grab my backpack and a snack before anyone even knew I was there.
I kept a small amount of food in my desk just for nights like this. The fighting was constant these days and I knew it was because the holidays were coming. Mom was used to and wanted to throw big parties, but money has been short ever since dad snuck off to Vegas in the middle of the week. He swears he wasn’t gambling, but he can’t account for the $5000 missing out of their shared bank account.
He either would not tell or could not remember what he had done in the 72 hours he was gone. He didn’t call or answer his phone and didn’t use his credit or debit cards so no one could track his movements. I knew if I made it to the backyard I could finish my homework before I had to console my mom over their latest argument. She didn’t know what to do anymore now that she thought my father was cheating on her. I knew she needed to leave him – we both needed to leave him. But I needed to find some sort of job before either one of us could leave. I was hoping a job would turn into also finding an apartment or some other form of housing. One where my father couldn’t find us.