7. Broken Home

8 May

Feeling left out and having nowhere else to go, Dimitri headed home, the last thing on his list of places that he would like to be.

The smell of alcohol greeted Dimitri as he walked through the door, a courtesy not received from his own father who was too involved with the television.

As Dimitri inspected the man sitting on the couch before him, he wondered as he often did, “Is this the person that I’m going to become in 20 years?” The thought was enough to sour his mood even further.

‘Are you almost done with the t.v dad?” Dimitri asked.

‘Does it look like I’m done? Would I still be watching if I was?’ his father yelled. Dimitri asked himself why his father’s stern reaction was a surprise to him for this has been the only way that he has ever spoken to him.

‘I only asked if you were almost done, I didn’t say you were! I’m just wondering when yo…” his father cuts him off…

“DON’T talk back to me. Go tell your mother to cook up some dinner, and don’t come back here. I’m gonna lose my appetite if I have to look at you again.”

“Hurry up!” his father screamed over the voices in the television.

Dimitri braces himself. He knows how irritable his mother can get when she is woken up. At least more irritable than normal.

“Whaddya want huh?” she asks behind closed eyes.

Dimitri replies, “Dad said you need to cook dinner, he told me t…”

The sleepiness leaves her quickly and eyes now wide open she shouts, “That’s what you woke me up for huh? You two pigs can’t fend for yourselves, always relying on me to do this, do that.”

“He…he just asked me to tell you, I didn’t wa…”

“Get out of the way you piranha” she sneers at him

They’ve never really been much of a family. Their lives compartmentalized, kept away from each other most of the time. On the occasions that one is forced to interact with another there is always friction, an argument waiting to surface.

The small house wasn’t much of a home to Dimitri. It was certainly a house, but it was not a home. In Dimitri’s ideal home, the people within exchanged kind words instead of insults, smiles instead of scowls.

The atmosphere was suffocating. Some time alone allowed Dimitri to breathe a little.

Looking through the fridge Dimitri finds nothing but milk, a stick of butter, some sliced processed cheese and a lot of alcohol. “There’s nothing here to eat!” Dimitri exclaims out loud in the hopes that one of his parents will remedy the situation.

His father walks by and asks him to clean his plate. Dimitri is oblivious to the fact that his father took his serving, although it wouldn’t surprise him if his mother simply neglected to make enough food so that he could have some as well.

Another night at home.

Mistaken For Strangers by The National


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