Cynthia ruined everything.
For over half my life, I’ve lived for summers with my dad. We go camping, hiking, fishing, and all that great outdoor stuff. And trust me, after spending most of the year stuck with Mom in the city, I need this guy time.
I arrived at Dad’s place last month, ready for a summer of adventure, but Dad had other plans. No camping trip, but we’ve seen every museum in the city. Doesn’t he know I come to see him to get out of the city? No hiking, instead we’re wandering the malls window shopping. And the worst part, Dad hasn’t taken me fishing one time. It’s all his new girlfriend Cynthia’s fault.
Last night was the worst. Cynthia convinced Dad to take us to a show. At first I thought we’d be catching a movie, but I didn’t recognize the name of the show, Swan something or other. Cynthia said that it would be in a “real” theater. We even had to dress up. I should have refused to go, but Dad said we’d have fun. Who am I to argue with my dad?
I hadn’t realized how low my father had sunk until the curtain came up and a girl danced onto stage. A ballet? We were actually watching a ballet? I glared at my father, but he just sat there with that stupid grin on his face. Beside him, Cynthia looked a bit too pleased with herself.
“You could use a little culture, Mitchell.” She said, patting me on the hand.
That was the last straw. First off, no one calls me Mitchell, except Mom when I’m in trouble. Second, I did not come out here to get culture; I came to have some guy time with my dad. Something had to be done, because my summer was running out.
It was while I was sitting there glowering at the stupid ballerinas dancing to their stupid Swan Lake music that I got an idea. We needed to go to the lake. If I could just get my Dad to do some of the guy things that we enjoy, maybe we could get rid of Cynthia. After all, it worked for the twins in Parent Trap, why couldn’t it work for me?
Dad didn’t want to go to the lake, but he promised we’d got to a pool. I recalculated my plan. A pool would work, I guess. Little did I realize that pool would be in Cynthia’s backyard. She was lounging near the water when we arrived. She’d be soaking in more than the sun when I got through with her.
I dumped my shirt and towel on a chair and raced to the side of water at top speed. I hooked my toes, bent my knees and propelled myself high over the water. Tucking into a tight ball, I closed my eyes and smiled. This was it. My signature Mega Mitch cannonball. I landed perfectly, and when I surfaced Cynthia was already up on her feet with a look of shock on her face.
“Alan, did you see what your son just did?” She whined.
“Don’t pull me into the middle of this.”
She scowled at me. I smiled, mimicked the little finger wave that she was always doing, and then sent a tidal wave of water spraying in her direction. She jumped back, but not in time.
“You don’t want to mess with me.” She threatened.
“Bring it.” I motioned her to join me, knowing full well how prissy she was. All talk, no action.
With a war whoop, Cynthia jumped into the water. It was so unexpected I inhaled the water that shot up my nose. I was still coughing and sputtering as she surfaced and started the most intense barrage of water assaults I have ever endured. She splashed me, sunk me, and dunked me. I was so busy trying to get a breath, I couldn’t counter her attack.
“No way, Mitch. You started it, you’re gonna have to man up to the consequences.”
It was too much. “I give up.” I threw my hands in the air. “You win.”
Immediately, the bombardment stopped. Cynthia stood in the water grinning at me.
“Where’d you learn to do that?” I asked as I pawed the water from my eyes.
“My four brothers.”
“Did they teach you to fish, too?”
“Can you bait your own hook?”
“Sure can. Want to go?”
Maybe Cynthia wasn’t so bad after all.
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