“Going Negative”

     I hate going negative. I worked hard to keep my 3.27 K/D and this is killing it. Going 21 kills with 34 deaths is terrible. Just another pisspoor effort to add on to the other horrible games I’ve had. Gaming professionally is harder than people think. You have to get results and I haven’t been lately. 
    “Hey, I’m going to put your clothes away,” said my tiny, fragile mom as she walked into my room. She keeps this sweet little facade up to mask her raging inner bitch. She’s been slowly driving my dad away for a while now and my brother is already trying to find his own place.

    “Mom, just do it later, I’m not in a good mood,” I said back to her. It was true. I’m not happy. 

    “Well, I gotta do it sometime”

    “Okay mom, do it later. I just wanna play COD, leave me alone,” I snapped back. If she puts my clothes away, she’ll see my cigarettes and dip in my drawers and then she’ll be really pissed. She opened my top drawer.

    “Mom, leave,” I said as I stood up.

    “Excuse me? This is my house, not yours. Don’t forget who the parent is here.”

I started to push her out of the plain white room. We struggled a bit but I got her out. When she was an inch out of the doorway I slammed the door in her face as she turned back around to try to force her way in. 

    “You better open this fucking door this instant!” shrieked my mom, “Peter! Get up here and help me!” After a good minute came more pounding on the door.

    “Son, will you open the door?” asked my dad. You can tell he’s only doing something because mom told him to. 

    “Dude, open the door. Mom’s pissed,” said my brother Jack. Perfect, everyone is on my case now. My brother jimmied around the lock a bit before he swung the door open with everyone pouring in. My mom darted through my laundry drawers as if looking for a hidden treasure or some shit. She found my green and white pack of Newports.

    “What the fuck?! How could you bring these in my house?” she snapped. My dad and brother knew I smoked. My mom knew too but she yells at me to stop constantly, like an itch that keeps getting worse and worse until you scratch it with a fury.

    “Mom, you knew I fucking smoked!” I fired back, trying to establish that I’m no longer a little kid. 

    She whipped around and continued to search the drawers. “Why do you have this?” she asked, pulling out my tin of Grizzly Mint dip. That sent her over the edge. 

“What the hell is in here?” asked my dad as he opened my tin, unknowingly pouring out all the tobacco onto the white carpet. 

“Goddammit! Why don’t you fucking clean this up too?” I screamed as I tore my blanket and sheets off my bed as I flipped it over and threw my video games around the room.

Jack came over to me and hooked my arms trying to hold me back from completely ransacking my room. We wrestled a bit and then broke out into a fistfight. I stuck him in the mouth and the shoulder and he landed a right hook to my jaw splitting my lip open before I pushed him into the corner of the wall. 

My dad stepped in trying to keep me from fighting my brother. I exploded on him, wielding blows to his head, chest, and stomach. I towered over his already small stature and he began to fall to the ground after he had never even thrown a punch. He hit the ground with a thud. After all the chaos, destruction, and the terrified screams of my mother, I had to leave. I ran to get my dark blue duffle bag and loaded some clothes into it and took off down the stairs. My mom ran after me yelling for me stop but barely getting the words out between the tears of anger.

I flung the door open and charged out into the cold rainy night with pajama pants, nikes with no socks, a North face, and a phone. I made it two blocks before a squad car pulled up. 

“Why you walking in the rain?” Asked the cop in the passenger seat. I recognized his face but I didn’t have the name to go with it. When my friends and I hung out at the park by my house, he always drove by in his squad car. He had a winter hat on, the one with the black and white checkers that go around it.

“Got into a fight with my parents and left the house.”

“What’s in the bag?”

“Clothes,” I responded. 

The cop nodded. He turned to his partner and muttered a few words before turning back to me. “You want a ride anywhere? A place you wanna go?” He asked.

“No that’s okay. Thanks,” I replied.

“Alright, be safe,” he said. His signaled to his partner and the two drove off. I watched the tail lights fade in the distance. 

I needed a place to go to get out of the rain. I walked to the 24/7 Dunkin’ Donuts and sat in there. I bought a coffee and tried to figure out what to do next. Maybe this was my chance to do what my dad and brother couldn’t – get out of my mother’s house. I was eighteen. I could find my way. I had some money saved up from my gaming contract to get a cheap apartment. I could have Jack bring me my Xbox and I could keep working. Yeah, that was it. I was hopeful. This was my chance. 


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