A week into my break and I was already exhausted. Why? Because for some reason someone at the base could not handle a simple task and they had to get my father to call me in to help. It upset me badly and I was snapping at any and everyone who was around me. After I finished helping, I "politely" convinced them to not call me again for anything like that at all unless they were dying. It made them practically piss their pants hearing me say that, and they really did piss their pants, but I didn't give a fuck. It was my day off and these assholes were calling me in. Because of this, my father added an extra day for me and Chase to have off, which I was grateful for. An extra was well deserved after the shit I had to deal with.
Aside from that, I was currently in my own personal car heading to my father's home for Sunday dinner. It was a tradition within our family to have dinner with each other, which meant that my two uncles along with their wives and kids would come along with two of Naomi's sisters, their husbands, and their kids along with some dishes they prepared at home. My father kept the traditional dinner alive after my mother died because he knew that was what she would have wanted, and so we did every single Sunday. Naomi, just like my mom, enforced that we all be in attendance with those powerful, small iron fists of her that everyone dread coming into contact with.
Two years ago, I had the unlucky chance to feel the wrath of her fists after coming in late and let's just say that I never did that again. Not only that, but Naomi had made it a rule that everyone, including the men, helped out in the kitchen in some way along with the children. Naomi didn't believe that the women should just cook themselves because she felt that it was "babying" men in some way. My dad agreed with her and helped out in any way he could, and I would too if I didn't want to get punched.
When I arrived at the house, I parked my car in the driveway beside my dad's sleek, black Porsche. The old man got it two years ago and is overprotective of it as if it's a newborn. Sometimes I swear he loves this car more than me, his own son, and I wouldn't doubt it either. The sound of the front door opening let me know that someone had come outside. Speak of the devil.
"And the devil shall appear," I mumbled to myself. My dad frowned at me and then carefully inspected his car scratches. He sighed in relief when he found none and turned to me while I gave him a look.
"Don't look at me like that. I have to make sure my baby isn't all scratched up," He gently patted the hood. My old man is so careful with his car that he treats it like glass. He acts like it'll break if someone hits it too hard with their fist.
"You have some issues, especially when it comes to this car," I remarked.
"Whatever, You knucklehead. Get inside and help Naomi already. She banned me from the kitchen," He said.
"Why?" I inquired.
"Because I-" He started to say, "You see-just get your ass in the kitchen and help her!"
He let out a loud, irritated huff that let me know that he did something too embarrassing for even him to admit out loud. I'm sure Naomi got pissed and kicked him out of the kitchen for the rest of the day. It's regular occurrence here on Sunday and always has been. My mom used to do the same thing before she died and my dad would pout like a child all day because he couldn't do anything to help like the big baby he is.
I walked inside the two story childhood home that my dad and Naomi resides in together. The scent of good food being cooked filled my senses and made my stomach growl out of hunger. As usual, Naomi was making my mouth water with her delicious food. I haven't even tasted the food and yet I could practically taste it through smell.
"Naomi, the annoying asshole is here," My dad announced.
"The only annoying asshole in this house is you," She countered. That made me snicker as my dad glared at me icily. Naomi was always defending me whenever my dad was being childish. He didn't like it one bit and complained about it, but Naomi's excuse always was, and I quote,
"He's my baby even if we're not blood related."
It was no secret that Naomi considered me to be the son she never had and I treated her as if she was my mother even though I call her by her first name.
I entered the kitchen to find Naomi slaving over the stove listening to an old school hip-hop and R&B playlist on Spotify. It was Naomi's favorite thing to listen to whenever she was cooking because it got her pumped up.
"Axel, I'm so glad you're here," She smiled as I approached her. She hugged me and kissed my cheek before moving away to continue cooking.
"Have you been enjoy your vacation?" She asked.
"At first I wasn't, but now I am," I responded.
"I'm glad you're enjoying the rest of it. You and that girl needed that break," She smiled. Naomi didn't like Chase to be honest because she got a "bad" feeling about her. She always made sure to warn me to be cautious around her, but I convinced her that Chase was harmless and that I would handle her if she got out of hand. Naomi still continues to warn me and she never allow Chase within a mile of the house. It's just that bad.
"I had to convince your father to give you an extra day with his ole stubborn ass," She informed me.
"I'm sure he wasn't too keen on that," I murmured.
"He wasn't, but after some "polite" conversation he finally agreed," She grinned mischievously. I shook my head with a smile.
"Have you heard anything from Jade?" She asked. I shook my head as I took off my jacket. She frowned a little at my response. Jade was my half-sister that was born right after my dad and Naomi got married. Jade was very beautiful and she took more after Naomi appearance and personality wise. The one thing she got from my dad was his eyes like I did, which were green.
Not only that, but Jade, unlike my dad or Naomi, was kind of a free spirit. She didn't like to stay in one place for too long. She decided at the young age of eighteen to travel the world to see what it had to offer, which worried the hell out of my dad and Naomi who didn't want her to do that in the first place. They made sure that she at least called one out of the three of us to tell us that she was okay so she wouldn't be forced to take the first flight back home.
However, it seems from Naomi's question that Jade has not contacted her or my dad at all. I'm sure that she probably either a) forgot or b) has no cell reception where she is. I'm going with choice A because Jade is known for not remembering to call us to say that she's safe. She's always done this and it drives my dad and Naomi crazy.
"I'm sure she's okay," I assured Naomi, "She'll probably call once she remembers the threat of being sent back home as soon as possible."
As if I'm cue, my phone rings and I looked to see that it was Jade calling. With a smile, I held it up to show Noami who was now very excited to see that she was calling.
"Hey, Axe. How's everything at home?" Jade inquired.
"Everything is Fine. How are you? Where are you?" I responded.
"Well currently I'm in Greece staying with a couple of friends from high school," She responded.
"Really? How is Greece?" I asked.
"Ask her if she's eating enough, ask her if she's bathing every day too," Naomi whispered to me, "Ooh! Ask her if she needs her father to send someone to protect her."
"It's fine, but is Mom standing next to you right now?" She asked.
"You guesses it, J," I replied. She sighed loudly into the phone.
"Hand it to her or else she'll keep hounding you. No point in prolonging the inevitable," She said.
"Alright. Good luck on your travels and be safe," I replied.
"I will. Oh yeah, I'm coming for Christmas this year so keep it from the old man and Mom. I want it to be a surprise," She informed me.
"My lips are zipped," I responded.
"Thanks, Axel. Bye," She said. I handed the phone to Naomi who thanked me before carefully putting it to her ear. One minute she was worriedly asking about Jade's well-being and the next she was cursing her out for not calling and for making them worried. She threatened to bring her home if she didn't call next time and to make sure that she stayed home for good and went to school like many kids her age. I wasn't the one getting yelled at and that put some fear into my heart.
My dad silently walked into the kitchen and towards Naomi who handed him the phone. He talked quietly at first like Naomi did and soon the yelling picked up again. I'm sure having two people talk to you calmly and then start yelling at you startled Jade twice. It startled me for sure to see these two go from a calm and collected lake to a raging tsunami of anger. Moments like this reminded me of why my dad and Naomi were made for each other.
"Have fun, honey. Your mother and I love you so much," Dad lovingly said, "Safe travels. Bye."
The phone was handed to me and I saw that Jade was still on the line.
"Axel, I'm exhausted from being yelled at. I'll talk to you guys tomorrow. Okay?" She said.
"You too, Jade. Bye," I replied.
"Bye," She said. I chuckled softly. I'd be exhausted too from being yelled at like that.
"I'm so glad she called," Naomi beamed as she continued to cook.
"Me too," My dad smiled. They both went about their usual business while I went straight to helping Naomi cook dinner.
Ten minutes into helping Naomi, the doorbell rings and boisterous laughter reaches our ears in the kitchen. My dad, Naomi, and I share a look already knowing who it was. It was my uncle Alex and his family, which was comprised of his wife Lisa, his teenage daughter Leilani, and his middle school age son Jayden.
"I'll get it," My dad informed us. Naomi hummed in response as she continued what she was doing. Moments later, loud greetings followed by laughter that was so loud that even astronauts could hear followed the sound of the door unlocking.
"Those two have always been loud since we were children," Naomi remarked with a smile, "Every single time they get together, you would think that it's the first time they're seeing each other in a while."
Naomi was right about my dad and my uncle acting as if they hadn't seen each other for a while. They always did this, but you couldn't blame them since our respective fields of work were dangerous. While my father and I were witch hunters, my uncle was a werewolf hunter. His job was just as dangerous as ours and half the time people don't even come home to see their families ever again. So most of the time my father and uncle greeted each other with excitement and happiness at the fact that they both were able to live another day.
"Naomi, how are you?" Aunt Lisa greeted. Naomi stopped what she was doing to hug Lisa with her arms held out away from her. They pulled away and Aunt Lisa began to talk to Naomi as she washed her hands. My cousins walked into the room together to do the same so they could help out in the kitchen.
"Hey, Axel," Leilani greeted with a small smile.
"Hi, guys. How's school going?" I inquired.
"It's going great," Leilani smiled, "I got transferred back to AP Literature after a mistake made by the office."
"You raised a bit of hell didn't you?" I chuckled.
"Of course she did, Axel. This is my sister you're talking about," Jayden replied. Leilani rolled her eyes at him.
"You can get anywhere in life if you're not assertive. Isn't that right, Mr. Too-Scared-To-Ask-Sophie-Out?" Leilani shot at him. Jayden's expression turned into a flustered one as soon as she said that. I guess what Leilani said is true. He won't ask out the girl he likes.
"For your information, I'm just trying to ask her out in a unique way. I don't want to be normal about it," Axel said.
"In other words, you're going to do something so totally basic that will have her swooning like the basic girl she is," Leilani remarked.
"Uhhh...no," He rolled his eyes. Leilani and I laughed at him.
"There is no such thing as a shy love confession," I told Axel. He looked at me as if I had just said the most profound thing in the world, while Leilani snickered.
"And to think that you watched Asian dramas," Leilani remarked.
"Look, Chase got me hooked and they say some really good things that should be taken into account when it comes to real life," I murmured, "And why am I telling you guys this?"
"Maybe because you can't tell those two," Leilani jerked a thumb in the direction of our fathers who were currently play fighting. All three of us looked at them as if they were idiots.
"Anyways, you better be prepared for when we sit down at the table. Our mom is going to bring up this totally annoying girl that works with Dad," Jayden murmured lowly to me. I looked to Leilani for confirmation and she nodded her head. A low groan was my only response to this information. I'm thankful that these two warned me like they always do because getting ambushed with something like that is bothersome to say the least.
"She's pretty no doubt, but she's a total b-i-t-c-h with a capital B," Leilani added.
"And a total gold digger," Jayden remarked, "She's been trying to find some rich husband to take care of her for the rest of her life."
"She's failed many times," Leilani said, "Which you would think would make her stop, but I guess a shark can't stop swimming."
"Thanks for telling me, you two," I murmured.
"You're welcome. We just don't want you to be miserable," Leilani said.
"Especially with her," Jayden grimaced.
The rest of the night was filled with good food, some lame dad jokes from the dads, Naomi and my aunt trying to set me up with the daughters of their friend's, and listening to my dad and uncle reminisce about their teen years that everybody has heard at least a million times. Dinners like this made me realize even more why this organization emphasizes on the importance of family and although I'm a little opposed to having a family now at the height of my career, it would be nice to some day have children with a woman I have chosen and that I have fell in love with on my accord without any interference from my family.