Lemon Cream Cake, Anchor

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Dear J[ournal],

When you grow up around money like I do, you don't long for it like everyone else does. I'm pretty sure I could quit school right now, and just live off my parent's wealth for the rest of my life. But I might as well just throw out my own dignity and dreams as well. I'm not sure what I want to be when I grow up yet. I'm only seventeen. But I do know that I want to known for something other than being the offspring of a famous actor and fashion designer.

It's dinner time. My father's seated at the head of the table with my mother to his right. I'm sitting to left, as silent as ever. Dinner in the Briggs household is usually very quiet. It's always my parents talking about business and what meetings they have the following day. Or sometimes it's about how much money was brought in. Occasionally, a question is tossed at me like "How was your day?" but nothing out of the ordinary had happened yet. I guess because school hasn't started. Unfortunately, it starts in a week and a day. At least I can say that it's the first day of my last year of high school. Thank, God.

"How was your day, honey?" My mom asks taking a bite of meatloaf. It's not that nasty kind of meatloaf you sometimes see in movies. You know, where the kids are like "That nasty meatloaf, again? Gross."

No, this is the good kind of meatloaf, like the one you see Paula Deen cooking up. Except I think Roz is cooks a whole lot better than Paula, not that I've tasted any of Paula's stuff before. You see, Roz, well Rosalinda Gomez, through the eyes of my parents is only our 26 year old house servant. All they expect from her is to cook delicious meals, clean the entire dang house, and watch over me on weekdays. Once she's done cooking dinner and cleaning the fireplace that we never use, she's out of here. But I wish she could stay for dinner sometime. Once? She never has and with my father always accusing her of stuff, she's probably never going to get the chance to. But if she did, at least then, I'd have someone to talk to. Roz, to me, has become the only non-blood relative that I call my friend. But, stupid me got too attached and now I see her as my older sister, the awesome Spanish speaking sister that I never had.

Sometimes, it sucks to be an only child. My mom, sadly, couldn't have any more kids. I know she secretly longs for another child. She always loves clients who bring their kids in. But she also says that a child now would probably just bring her down. Right now, she's "on top of her game" as she puts it. Her business is booming, and she's never been happier with herself.

Speaking of my mother.

"Maxine." My mother's voice becoming more firm.

I look up from my almost empty plate into my mother's eyes. Her emerald eyes were staring back at me. I got my mom's dark brown hair, but somehow got my father's crystal blue eyes, instead of her green ones. Seems like every Briggs I know has blue eyes.

"I asked you how your day was." She says once again.

You see, it's hard for me to respond to anything or anyone when they use my first name. Maxine. Like The Ting Tings' song. That's not my name! Well, technically it is. But I hate it, so I only respond to Kylie.

But she's my mom, and that's my dad. What can I do? I can't ignore them.

"Oh, today I just hung out with Roz. After she cleaned the upstairs bathrooms (Roz will thank me for that later), I took her out to eat at La Crème. We brought the lemon cream cake there." I said.

"You sure do hang out with Roz a lot. You never hang out with me." My mom said a little pouty.

Well maybe because you don't have cool stories about living in Mexico to tell. All you ever talk about are the dos and don'ts of fashion.

"She's like my sister, mom." I said before finishing up my dinner.

"Well does she give you super fantastic gifts like I do?" She said smiling. "Your father and I bought you little something. But we'll wait after dinner."

Wow, Mom. You really think getting me the entire world is going to make me want to spend more time with you? Its' not going to happen. I wish you took more time talking and getting to know me, then trying to get me the latest everything.

"Did Rosalinda drive your car? She better not ever be in the driver's seat of your car, you got that?" My father warned.

"Yes, I know. She didn't drive. I did." I reassured him.

"Don't give her keys to anything either. I have a feeling that I can't trust her. She's just so young. I think it's time we let her go." He was going to continue but.

"Dad! Roz has never stolen from us. Don't fire her." I pleaded. There's no getting through with his man. This is the fifth time I'm convincing him to not fire her.

"All right. I won't fire her, but I think we should cut her hours to only weekends now."

"What?" I looked up from the pie I was devouring. She's always here every day, why, Daddy, why?

"You heard me. You're growing up. You're almost eighteen; you should be able to take care of yourself." He nodded his head. "I'm going to give her a call first thing tomorrow morning."

"Dad, I'm not almost eighteen! I'm turning eighteen in April. That's in like eight months." I had to correct him. My own father doesn't know my birthday. I'm sure he knows, but come on! Not my Roz!

"Still, Maxine. You need to learn how to do some things on your own. Stanley doesn't even have a house servant anymore. Danielle seems to be doing just fine without one." He's comparing me to Dani again.

"I'm not Dani." I admitted. This might shock my dad.

"I know you aren't. It's just-"

"All right, you guys. Let's just drop this okay? I want a nice dinner. Let's just finish up this cake. We still want to give you your present, Maxine." My mom always thought presents make everything better.

I helped my mom clean up the table when we were done. I washed up and got into my favorite ducky pajama bottoms on and a black tank. I'm pretty casual when I sleep, you know, because I want… sleep.

I met both of my parents in the family room. The downstairs family room. Our house is pretty big. I'm giving you guys a tour later!

Anyway, both of my parents were also dressed for bed. The JUST sleeping one. My dad was sitting on his favorite recliner catching up on a book. My mom had her glasses on, and she was resting on her forearms with her face in her sketch book. She was working on a new design.

I didn't want to disrupt this quiet moment.

"Hey, you wanted to talk to me?" I ask hesitantly entering the room.

"Oh, yes." My mom said taking off her glasses, closing the sketch pad. My father also set down his book.

"Max! Come here, and get the present!" My mom shouted over to my dad. I took a seat on the couch and both my parents sat down.

"Honey, you know we both love you so much. We just wanted to get you a little something so you wouldn't forget." She pulled out a tiny box and placed it in my hands.

I opened it up. It was a silver chain necklace with a silver anchor as the pendent. It was simple, but so beautiful.

"You're the anchor that keeps us grounded." My mom said with a smile. "I know you're probably thinking, 'all we ever think about is work and money.' Yes, those things are very important to us. Without them we wouldn't be living the lifestyle that we are. But you're the reason we do it. We want the best for you."

"That's right, honey. We love you." My dad said coming over and giving me a kiss on the forehead. He was heading out the door.

"Wait. There's one more thing we have to tell you." My mom motioned for my dad to come back into the room.

"Yeah?" I didn't know what she was going to say.

"I really hate saying this. You know that client I was suppose to meet in Paris at the beginning of October? Well, something came up and now I have to leave this Sunday."

"What?" I'm confused.

"I said, I am leaving for Paris in exactly seven days. But it will only be for a few weeks. I think three weeks tops." She said hugging me. "and your father…" She said turning toward my dad who was just about to leave too.

"What about Dad?" I ask.

"The movie that I'm starring in starts shooting in a few days. I'm leaving for Iceland in four days." He said looking down and scratching his head. "I'm only going to be gone for a month. I'll come home for a week to check up on you guys then I'll be gone for maybe another month. But the filming for this movie should be pretty quick." He says, yes that's quite reassuring.

"So I'm going to be alone in this house?" I said with a worried look on my face. I don't like this at all. I don't know how I can fend for myself.

"It will only be for a few weeks. We're going to call you as much as we possibly can." My mom said. "I'm sorry we won't be here to wish you luck on your first day of your senior year. But think of it this way, you can throw as many parties as you want. But not the big kind, because remember that one time we threw your father a birthday party. That got too out of hand. Not too many people. If anything gets broken, you'll be in big trouble." She said tucking stray strands of hair behind my ear.

"I don't even have that many friends to throw such a party." I admitted. Yeah, I'm a loser.

"That's why this new year could be like a clean slate. It's your last year, so make the best of it." She said kissing me on the forehead.

"Thanks, Mom, Dad." I said getting up. My mom put on the necklace for me, and both of my parents wished me good night as I went upstairs to my room.

This is probably the fiftieth necklace I've received from them, but I think it's my favorite so far. When people look at it, they're not going to assume that I have millions at my disposal or anything like that. It's simple and so drama-less. That is exactly how I want my senior year.

God, if you're out there, that's all I'm praying for this year.

GANGSTAR: Do you like it? Do you like it? :)