The Antisocial One

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Tires squealed as a pale white sedan flew into the parking lot of the church the Miller family worshiped at. Amanda threw open her car door, snatching her son by the arm yanking him out from the back. She needed him gone. She had been longing for this week to fuck every single man on the cruise she had paid for, and she wasn’t about to allow her eighteen-year-old son to stay in her home all by himself.

“Mom?! I don’t want to go!” Tate moaned as his mother shoved his duffle bag into his arms, roughly placing his sleeping bag on top of it.

“I don’t care if you do or don’t! You live in my house you will do as I say!” Amanda growled turning him around pushing him towards to the church bus as the youth group gathered to board it.

“But I’m not Christian,” Tate pleaded. He had no wish to be trapped in that metal tube, nor around so many people.

“I don’t give a damn! It would be good for you, and you can keep an eye on your sisters while you are away. A boy your age shouldn’t be alone so much, it’s not natural,” Amanda said seeing her daughters mingling around their group of friends. “Either participate or don’t but you are not staying in my house alone.”

“Whatever. You just want to screw everyone…,” Tate’s head rocked to the side, his dark hued sunglasses hung off of one ear from the slap across his face. His mother spouted off constantly about God and the bible and yet he knew of all the men she slept with. It wasn’t that hard to notice the odd cologne in his home every time he came home from school.

“Mom? Tate? What are the two of you doing here?” Becky asked with her younger sister in tow. She had asked her brother to join them given this would be her first year as a counselor at the camp, yet Tate was adamant that he wanted nothing to do with it. Ever since they were younger she noticed how he always shied away from people, always alone never really growing close to anyone except for them and two very rare people in her brother’s life.

“Tate will be joining you, I’m going out of town I won’t be back until next Sunday. So you will have to drive your siblings home once you all get back. I don’t care if he does anything I just want him out of the house,” Amanda said as she opened the driver side door.

“Tate!” Cindy cried joyfully as she threw her arms around her brother as Tate fixed his glasses hiding those deep cobalt eyes of his.

“Tate you might as well come on, the bus is about to leave,” Becky said tugging on his shirt sleeve. Wondering why there was a small padlock on his bookbag that held the zippers closed. “Did you bring your medication?” she asked not wishing to be that far removed from the nearest town if he was off his medication. The one time and only time she had saw him off of his meds was when he had two boys moaning in pain on the ground and another who was about to have his arm broken when they tried something with Cindy whatever that was. Cindy would never tell her even to this day.

“Yes sis,” Tate groaned.

“Good. We wouldn’t want a repeat like the last time, and you don’t want Mom to put you in that ward again,” Becky said motherly rubbing his back. She knew how hypocritical her mother was, and how poor of a mother she was to them, so she took it upon herself to fill that void for her brother and sister.

“Let her try,” Tate huffed. None of them knew of the plans he had, if his mother hadn’t rushed him off this morning he be looking for a new place to live. None of them knew what he has been doing when he was alone in his room which he had to admit was every day. Then again, that is how he had put out a series of books in such a short time. He loved it. It gave him away to escape from his life and go live in the worlds he had created if even for a short time.

“Tate you are going to love it!” Cindy said tossing her arms into the air.

“Not likely to many people,” Tate said eyeing the heads that filled the windows.

“Tate not everyone is bad, why don’t you give them a chance?” Becky asked as they stepped onto the bus. She could feel that eye roll of his. That always happened when she brought up the subject. “Just think about it okay,” she said before her brother moved off to the rear of the bus. Noticing how the other youth group members scurried out of the seats near the one Tate had taken. Then to her younger sister as she plopped down next to her friends chatting away. Becky wanted to bring her brother into her world, yet it appeared her youth group wasn’t giving Tate a chance. Not that she could blame them he had earned quite the reputation. It was one of the reasons he never came to church any more.

The sound of keys tapped away as Tate listened to the sound files of the audiobooks he currently had in production while he worked on the final book in his fantasy series. Nodding along enjoying how the male narrator was telling his tale. However, that came to a stop as his phone rang, pulling out his earbud as he saw the number for his agent. Wondering why Jacob would be calling him?

“Hello?” Tate answered ignoring how all their heads turned towards him. “Yeah, I can pendik escort talk, what’s going on? What! No way!” he yelled joyously he had been waiting for this call once his agent told him about it.

“Dude?! No phones!” Jack – the hot shot jock and all-around good boy – said as he rose from his seat.

“Give me one second Jacob,” Tate said muting the microphone before turning his attention to Jack. “Then you have to take away everyone else’s since obviously you ignore all the pings and dings from the text messages they are sending; or is it just me that’s actually using what a phone is made for, or it’s me – personally – you have a problem with? Now if you excuse me I’m on an important business call,” he said shooing Jack off.

“No wonder you don’t have any friends,” Jack sneered.

“All my friends are dead,” Tate said darkly. Which was true, having lost their lives when their father drove drunk one night flipping the dune buggy he was driving, killing his two only friends while the man himself walked away without a scratch. That night once he had learned of the crash that was when he had lost his faith. “You still there Jacob?” he asked unmuting the mic. Noticing how his older sister pinched her nose and shook her head at the same time. “Yeah, sorry about that, you were saying? Next Wednesday? Yeah sure, that shouldn’t be a problem, oh you got that covered? Sweet thanks! Wouldn’t know where to find a good hotel in Los Angeles. So want me to fly out Tuesday or early Wednesday?” Tate asked quickly opening up Edge on his Surface searching for flights to LA next week. “Yeah, I don’t have a problem with flying in Tuesday,” he nodded as he compared prices on a first-class round-trip ticket. “I’ll see you then Jacob,” Tate said hanging up his phone once he had bought his ticket.

“Tate?” Becky said as she walked down the aisle feeling her sister at her back as she neared his seat. Watching how he looked up with his earbud in hand about to reinsert it into his ear. Arching an eyebrow when she saw his Surface Pro 4. She had been wanting one when the first Surface came out. She knew it would be perfect for her to take to her college classes, yet the price tag for them were too steep for her to afford. Yet the question remanded, how could her brother afford one when she could not? Watching how he quickly powered off the device hiding whatever was on the screen.

“What is it sis?” Tate asked wishing for this week to fly by.

“What’s this about you going to LA?” Becky asked standing in the aisle blocking his escape.

“Cool laptop,” Cindy said peering over the back of the seat that she knelt on. “Where did you get it? You didn’t steal it did you?”

“No,” Tate said glancing at her, “I bought it at that small electronic store in town a few months ago.”

“Answer the question Tate,” Becky said sternly.

“Why? I thought it was self-explanatory,” Tate said looking up at his older sister.

“Tate just tell me why LA?” Becky asked sitting down on the seat across from him.

“I thought I take a summer long vacation from Mom, and a couple thousand miles away from one another sounds nice, don’t ya think? Plus, never been to the west coast I thought I’d check it out.”

“Tate don’t lie to me,” Becky said crossing her arms, “you don’t speak that kindly to anyone.”

“What?! I do too, when I feel like it.”

“No you don’t, well except for us, the rest of the time you are an ass to everyone,” Cindy said, she too was curious as to why the trip to LA.

“Whatever,” Tate said rolling his eyes.

“Fine, if you won’t tell me,” Becky said snatching the earbuds from his ear. A gasp resounded as she listened to that deep male voice. She knew that passage, she knew it by heart. She had no idea it had been transcribed to audio. She wasn’t ashamed to say she stalked the author’s Facebook author page, nor was she ashamed to say she ran the largest fan-based page for that series. She even dressed up as Gwendolyn whenever she went larping.

“I want to listen too!” Cindy said beating her hands against the seat. “What’s this?” she asked confused her mind racing trying to remember where she heard those words before. Given how they didn’t have much she had borrowed some of her sister’s books from time to time to keep the boredom at bay.

“It’s chapter three from Xin: The Rise of Darkness,” Becky said matter-of-fact. “There has to be more!” she hissed with the audio file stopped. Snatching her brother’s phone off from atop of his bag, she figured out long ago the password he used to unlock his phone. She only broke into it to check on him since he never talked about how he was feeling. Once she found nothing she would quickly powered off his phone. That was the only time she would ever invade his privacy like that, until now.

“Guess I’m going to have to change that,” Tate said taking back his phone.

“Please Tate, can I listen to the whole thing?!” Becky pleaded with her brother.

“Yes, you got to let us,” Cindy said nodding in support.

“But can we put it on its own playlist, so we can listen uninterrupted?” maltepe escort Becky asked laying her hands on his forearm. She knew she and Cindy were the only ones that could actually touch Tate without getting that ugly scowl that marred his face when someone he didn’t know touched him in such a manner.

“You know I only have the first three chapters, right?”

“So! I love this book! Plus how did you get it anyway?” Becky asked watching as Tate made a playlist for her.

“Umm…,” Tate stuttered quickly pushing the play button hoping it would distract his sister only to watch as she paused it.

“Tate answer the question,” Becky said in the same motherly voice she used whenever he got out of line. Smiling when she saw his shoulders sagging knowing she had won.

“Keep this a secret from everyone, I don’t want anyone to know – namely Mom. You know what she would do if she knew especially when I have money,” Tate said wishing to keep his mother’s money-grubbing fingers off of his coin. “I won’t tell you until you do.”

“Tate you know we won’t,” Becky said slipping her hand into his. Watching as he pulled the keyboard off, tilting the device to the side as he typed in his password. Laying the Surface on her lap “Xin” staring up at her in bold face letters. Her finger moving the page up her left hand flying to her mouth.

“Becky isn’t that…?”

“Yes, it is, Tate how can you have this? How can you have an unedited word document for the fifth book?”

“Think about it sis,” Tate sighed.

“Then you are…?”

“The author,” Tate whispered.

“That’s so cool!” Cindy squealed.

“Why didn’t you tell me?!” Becky asked throwing her arms around his neck.

“I thought I already said as to why,” Tate said blowing his sister’s brunette hair out of his face.

“But you could have told us,” Cindy whispered.

“Umm, I’m antisocial I’m not in the habit of divulging such things unless I’m asked sis,” Tate said wondering why Becky’s hug was lasting longer than usual.

“Yet I asked why are you going to LA? So spilt it brother,” Becky said pushing away from him. Praying that he never saw that rather skimpy Gwendolyn photo she had submitted to his page.

“I’m going to finalize the deal to make the first one into a movie,” Tate said in a hushed whisper.

“No way!” Cindy whispered in awe.

“Yeah,” Tate said blushing hard.

“You do realize, we are going to have to go with you now,” Becky said taking hold of his hands. “You perfectly well can’t go to LA alone. Your beloved sisters need to be there with you,” she said nodding.

“Yes, yes, we so need to go with you,” Cindy said nodding in support.

“But I already bought my ticket,” Tate groaned in annoyance.

“Then you will buy two more for your loving, caring sisters,” Becky said narrowing her eyes. She wanted to be there at the ground floor of this grand adventure of his.

“Mmmhmm,” Cindy said nodding her head.

“Fine,” Tate sighed he might dislike people and mankind in general, yet he did love his sisters. “There happy, first class all the way,” he said rolling his eyes at his sisters vehement nods and broad smiles.

“So how long will you be in LA?” Becky asked hiding the pride she felt for her brother.

“Don’t really know,” Tate said scratching his chin, “however, long to it takes to negotiate the contract, I know a tour of the studio is in the mix.”

“You so got to take us with you!” Cindy said trying to keep her voice to a whisper.

“Oh yes, you must,” Becky nodded causing her hair to become a skewed. Quickly looking down at her watch knowing she had to get back to the other counselors. “When we get to camp, and after I get the girls settled you will indulge your sisters in allowing us unrestricted access to all the audiobooks you had made and,” she said leaning into her brother, “you will let us read the newest book,” her lips brushing against Tate’s ear as she whispered.

“You can listen all you want, but you aren’t reading it,” Tate said, he allowed no one to read one of his stories when it hasn’t been finished yet.

“Tate?” Cindy said bending over the back of the seat allowing her breasts to dangle over it. Knowing how her shirt was hanging open which she didn’t mind this was her brother. He was the only one worthy she felt to see them. “Will you please let us read it? You know we would never spill the beans on what’s in it,” Cindy said ever since they were kids the three of them had a unique connection. She and Becky knew how sweet Tate could be, even if he didn’t like crowds, parties, or anything that dealt with large groups. Tate would whine, huff and yet he would go all because they had asked him. It might not be what normal siblings might do, yet their childhoods weren’t normal. They had to lean on each other when their mother was bed hopping; and what happened when those boys tried to assault her, while she saw a side of her brother she never wanted to see again, yet it made her love him all the more for it.

“Fine. All right,” Tate groaned kartal escort hating how they could so easily erode his resolve. “Sis, you know I’m moving out right?” he said peering over the rim of his glasses as Becky started to move back to her seat.

Becky kept her shock from showing. Could she learn to live without his daily presence in her life? To know that when she had a terrible day Tate wouldn’t be there to listen to her complain. To hear those odd, cold, logical words of his when she let her emotions cloud her judgement. He was the one that kept her from quitting a well-paying job. Without that job she knew she wouldn’t be able to attend these summer camps any longer, and she loved her company for it. What if her brother stopped taking his medication? She knew only she and Cindy could get through to him when he was in such a state. She didn’t know what she would do if Tate was locked away for good. Retaking her seat lost in thought unaware that Jack was talking to her.

“Hey!” Jack said tugging on Becky’s sleeve. He’s been trying to get her into his bed for the past five summers and yet she always blew him off. However, that wouldn’t stop him that only made him want Becky even more. “Didn’t you hear me?”

“What? No, sorry,” Becky said not looking at him.

“I asked that brother of yours isn’t going to make any friends if he doesn’t lose that attitude of his,” Jack said leaning over the aisle.

“He had friends they died, kind of hard for him to make new ones,” Becky said glancing over at him, “and what is it to you if he does or doesn’t make friends?”

“Hey, I’m just saying,” Jack said raising his hands in defense.

“Well, maybe he likes quality over quantity, and has yet to find those he wants to associate with?” Becky asked with a pointed look. She was tired of Jack constantly nipping at her heels. She knew his reputation at these camps. She wasn’t about to be another notch on his belt. She left that to those kinds of women that wanted to be used and not be loved like she yearned for.

“Hey, you stay out of what my brother does. You just worry about trying to score when most of us knows about what you are really like,” Cindy said cutting in. Jack bit down on his tongue as a round giggles filled the front of the bus.

“Maybe if you spread those legs you wouldn’t be such a bitch,” Jack said underneath his breath.

“You say something?” Becky asked with a pointed look arching an eyebrow.

“Not a word,” Jack muttered.

“Good. See that your tongue doesn’t get you into trouble,” Becky said before returning her mind back to her brother’s words. Pulling out her cell phone she needed to know where he was thinking of living. “Tate? Where were you thinking of moving to?” she asked sending her brother a text.

“The mountains. Less people around.” Biting her lip knowing it was four long hours away from their hometown and their mother.

“Does it have to be so far away?” Becky sent another text.

“Yeah, to keep Mom from trying to run my live and suck up every penny I have.”

“But Tate, if you are so far away then you won’t be able to see us,” Becky sent feeling her heart racing not wishing to let her brother go.

“You can come if you want, I’m not stopping you.”

“But our schools are here, me and Cindy simply can’t move four hours away. Can’t you please rethink this?” Becky pleaded hoping she could change his mind.

“*Sigh* Sis, that is why the phone was invented for.”

“But it’s not the same,” Becky sent with the sad face emoji. “It’s only for two more years can you wait until then? We can get an apartment if you really want to move out then we can move to the mountains.”


“Because I’m your sister, silly. *giggles* Shouldn’t older sisters always take care of their younger brother?” Becky couldn’t keep her smile from showing when Tate’s groan reached her.

“Fine,” Tate sent back with a grumpy emoji. “Once the two of you are done I’m gone, just so you are aware.”

“And that’s fine Tate I’d be more than happy to come with you.” Becky sent before pocketing her phone.

Tate shoved his Surface into his bag as the bus rambled down the gravel road that led to the camp proper. Scowling when all he could see was trees, grass, and the bellowing cloud of dust, yet no road that he could hitchhike from if he grew too tired of the nonsense they spouted. The lock clicking in place as a bouncing, cheerful, perky woman came bonding up the steps of the bus as the doors opened.

“Howdy campers! Who’s ready for wonderful week of summer camp?!” Tate rolled his eyes as the bus erupted into joyous cheers. He could already feel the headache forming. “For those that are new please follow your counselors to your cabins. Once you’re all squared away we have such lovely actives that each of you can enjoy. Now the big brass bell will ring once announcing the five-minute mark before breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Then it will ring twice when the meal is on. We do have a pool, but we also have a gentle lake if you want to swim. Be warn there will be no lifeguard in the more remote areas around the lake. So please, use the main beach if you want to swim there. That way we can ensure no one has an unpleasant experience here at Camp Wormwood.” Tate chuckled at the odd choice of name for a Christian summer camp.

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