Lake Fae Chapter 20: Cause and Effect

 

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“Geez.” I shook myself off after coming out of the machine. I had forgotten how uncomfortable the feeling of time travel was. Every time it felt like I was in a hurricane and there was something heavy on my chest. It was not a good feeling.

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“Hello?” I called out, noticing that my friends were nowhere to be found. I glanced around the area, but I was all alone here.

“What the hell…” I muttered to myself as I noticed how different everything looked.

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The sky was no longer bright blue, but a dark, foggy green. Everything was dull and rusty, unlike the bright, shiny chrome it used to be. The more I looked around, the more I noticed. The ground had huge cracks in it, it looked as if things were falling from the sky.

“How did this happen?” I whispered to myself in disbelief. How could things change so much in a year?

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“Hello?” I called out again, this time inside the building.

“Hey baby, we’re in here.” A familiar woman’s voice called from my left.

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“Guys?” I approached one of the rec areas and saw my friends. Or, what was left of them. They looked awful. Their clothes were old and dirty, they looked like they hadn’t showered in weeks, and they all looked like they were coming down from a heroin high.

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“Oh, you’re not the dealer.” Lyra scoffed and rolled her eyes. She lazily took a puff from the joint in her hand. “You shouldn’t have come back here.”

“What? Why.”

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“Why? Are you fucking kidding me? Look around, asshole! Look what you’ve done to this place! You ruined everything.” Canis yelled angrily.

“What? How is this my fault?”

“The drugs! You left them here, everyone’s addicted now and the world is shit. It’s all your fucking fault!” He screamed, and jumped up off the couch.

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Before I could react, his fist connected with my face and sent my flying to the ground.

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“What the hell man, I didn’t fuck things up on purpose!” I defended myself from my spot on the floor.

“What were you trying to do then?” He seethed.

“I was just trying to get you guys to have a little fun. I didn’t think you guys had access to any more drugs, so when those ran out I thought you’d be done! And I was messed up back then, but I’m clean now.”

“Thanks for rubbing it in, asshole.” Canis looked as if he were about to hit me again.

“Canis, calm down.” Andromeda pleaded, her voice hoarse and tired, nothing like the exuberant person I used to know. “Lake, sit, we’ll explain everything.”

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As I took a seat, I couldn’t help but notice the extensive stash they had laid out on their table. They had weed, heroin, prescription drugs I couldn’t see the names of, and a few baggies of cocaine. Though I’d been clean for a while, it was hard for me. I still craved the highs, and being so close to these drugs probably wasn’t good.

“W-what’s going on?” I asked shakily, tearing my eyes away from the stash and focusing on Andromeda.

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“Well, after you left we used up the rest of your stash. But we wanted more, so we sent Orion back to your time to try and get some more. He met a dealer, and ever since then the guy comes once a week to drop off more stuff. Lyra usually gives him his payment.” She motioned towards the vampire on the pool table. Now I understood why she was dressed that way and called me baby…

“Who’s your dealer?” I asked, I knew all the dealers in Appaloosa Plains.

“We don’t know his real name. But he calls himself Ninja.”

“Huh, I don’t know him.” I was puzzled. He must be a new dealer or a guy from out of town.

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“We need you to do us a favor, Lake. We can’t keep living like this. But we can’t stop on our own.” Orion slurred slightly.

“Of course guys, whatever you need I can help.” I owed it to them, I got them into this mess.

“We need you to blow up your time machine.”

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“What? I can’t do that. That would set my dad’s house on fire, and I’d never be able to see you guys again.” The thought of blowing up the machine made me sick. I loved time travel; I couldn’t just give it up like that.

“Please Lake, it’s the only way.” Andromeda begged. “If we keep going like this, the entire planet will get destroyed. We need this.”

“I-I don’t know. I don’t even have anything to blow it up with.”

“I have an explosive. I would’ve done it myself but I would’ve gotten stuck there.” Orion explained.

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“Please Lake, look at Ursa.” Canis motioned towards his unconscious wife. “She’s never awake anymore. She just wakes up, gets high and passes out. I don’t know what to do.” He looked as if he were about to cry.

“Okay, I’ll do it. But can I say goodbye to Seven first? Where is she?” I asked, noticing my robot wasn’t around.

“Sure, she’s downstairs. She’s been powered down for a while though, so theres really no telling what she’ll be like.” Orion offered.

“That’s ok, I just need to see her.”

————

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“Seven?” I cautiously approached her so I wouldn’t scare her. If you could even scare a robot… I wasn’t sure, so better safe than sorry.

“Master?” She asked as she sprung to life.

“Hey Seven, it’s me!” I exclaimed.

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“I warned you. I told you that was a bad idea. Look at the world now.” She scolded.

“I know, and I’m gonna make it right. I’m gonna blow up the time machine. I just wanted to say goodbye to you first.”

“Good. That will fix things.”

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“I’m glad. I’m sorry I messed things up so badly. And I’m sorry I have to leave you here, but once the group gets clean I know they’ll take good care of you.”

“Yes, Master. I will miss you.”

“I’ll miss you too.” I kind of felt like I wanted to cry, but I wouldn’t let myself. Not yet, not until I got home.

“Goodbye Master.”

“Goodbye Seven.” I gave her a pat on her cold, metal shoulder and headed for the stairs without looking back.

———–

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“I’m sorry the others aren’t here to see you off.” Andromeda apologized as I got ready to leave the future for the last time. The others were either too high or too pissed off to come say goodbye.

“That’s ok, maybe its for the best.” I responded sadly. I hated that things had to end on such bad terms.

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“I’m really sorry for all the damage I caused. I promise I’ll fix this.” I carefully placed the explosive in my pocket. My heart sped up, I really hoped this thing wouldn’t go off on its own.

“Thank you, Lake.” Orion smiled slightly. I nodded, before preparing myself for time travel, for the very last time.

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After punching numbers into the machine, I turned to them and gave them one last wave. They waved back with small smiles.

The doors of the machine opened and soon I was jumping towards that familiar purple light.

————-

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“Bye.” I said softly to myself as I arrived back at home. My heart hurt, ever since I was little I loved robots and futuristic things, now I had to give all that up. But I messed up, and I needed to fix this. I couldn’t be selfish this time.

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But could I do this? I wasn’t sure if I had it in me. Now that the task was right here in front of me, I didn’t know if I could go through with it. Could I really destroy my brother’s work? How would I explain this to my dad?

No, I had to stop making excuses for myself. I had to do this now, I’d deal with the consequences later.

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Slowly I pulled the explosive out of my pocket. Orion had briefly showed me how to use it, and I quickly followed his instructions, threw the device on top of the machine and ran for cover.

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I covered my ears and waited for the blast. As much as I didn’t want to destroy the portal to the future, I was kind of excited to see an actual explosion.

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Within seconds, the detonator went off and the entire machine exploded and quickly burst into flames Debris was flying from the machine and all over the small garage.

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The blast was so strong it sent me flying backwards into the trash. I watched as a large piece of metal came flying at me, but right before it hit me, my vision went black.


A/N: Next chapter is Lake’s finale 🙂

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Lake Fae Chapter 16: My Future

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It was about six in the morning when I prepared to go back home. It was now or never, if I didn’t face my problems head on I’d get caught up in the magic of the future and I’d never leave. I needed to get my act together, chasing after my childhood dreams was silly, I couldn’t be a rockstar or a hero from a sci-fi novel. I had to grow up.

It was gonna be hard. I’d screwed up a lot. I was gonna have to face my brother, I was gonna have to tell him about why I couldn’t save our sister. I was gonna have to face my dad, I was gonna have to tell him I failed at my musical career and I was gonna have to do something else. I hated to disappoint them both, but I needed to grow up.

My friends from the future had inspired me. Even though I had traveled through time, I realized I couldn’t change the past. What was done was done, I made a lot of mistakes and lost the one person I loved the most, but meddling with the past would only make things more complicated for me. I couldn’t focus on the past, I had to focus on my future.

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“How’re you feeling, Lake? Are you ready?” Andromeda asked me.

“Yea, it’s now or never.” I responded with a smile. This wasn’t the last time I’d be seeing them, but it was still sad to say goodbye.

“I’m proud of you man, it’s hard to get your life back together.” Orion commented with a smile. I knew it’d be hard, but I was determined.

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“Good luck, Lake. We’ll be rooting for you.” Canis nodded at me. I gave him a nod back and smiled.

“Don’t forget to visit, you’ll always have a room here!” Ursa smiled enthusiastically.

“I will, don’t worry. Thank you guys for being so welcoming.”

“Anytime.”

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“It’s been fun. We’ll take care of Seven until you get back.” Lyra smiled at me and at the robot standing at the end of the line.

“Thank you, I won’t be gone too long.” I assured her, I wouldn’t want to burden her too much. “Oh, and don’t forget, I left the box of stuff for you guys in my room.”

“Take your time, and thank you.” She winked. I winked back then turned to my robot.

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“Don’t worry, Seven, I’ll be back soon.”

“Yes, Master.” She gave me a small wave and I felt a little sad, it’s like I was dropping my pet off at the vet or something. I didn’t wanna leave her.

“I guess I should get going, before I change my mind.” I laughed, making the other chuckle slightly as well.

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“Bye Lake!” They all called out as the doors of the machine slid open. I gave them all a big wave before jumping into the purple light of the time machine.

 ———

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A few minutes later I was thrown from the darkness and into my brother’s room. He was sitting on the couch, staring anxiously at the machine.

“What the hell is going on, Lake? Where is she?” He bombarded me as soon as I found my footing.

“Not right now.” I waved him off, my head hurt from time travelling and I wanted to avoid this as long as possible.

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“Lake, what the hell! Come back! Talk to me!” Stone called after me as I ran out the garage door. I couldn’t do this right now, I wasn’t ready.

I ran all the way to my room and collapsed on my bed. Even though I had just woken up, it felt like I’d been awake for a thousand years. Stress can do that to a person.

———–

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The next morning I had managed to avoid Stone before he went to work, but I didn’t think I could keep it up much longer, he had knocked on my door for at least an hour. I had to get out of this house as fast as possible. So I called Allium for a little advice on getting a job that wasn’t dealing drugs. We had talked, neither of us could come up with any ideas, so we were taking a break and hanging out with Thistle. He was doing better, but he was still practically living here. I didn’t mind though, he was a cool guy and I was glad I could at least make up with him.

“So what’re you guys gonna do now?” Thistle asked, referring to the breakup of the band.

“I have no idea.” I responded with a sigh. “That band was my future.”

“That sucks bro.” Thistle gave me a sad smile. “What about you, Al?”

“Dunno, might start taking some classes down at the community college.” Allium responded with a shrug.

“Have you considered that?” Thistle asked me. I knew he was trying to help but I felt a little patronized.

“Yea, I don’t really think that’s my thing.”

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He was about to respond, but our conversation was interrupted by my dad coming down the stairs. None of us really knew how to respond, we hadn’t seen him down here in such a long time. He’s been worse since my sister died, he never came out of the attic, not even to go to work.

I decided to be bold, so I said, “Hey Dad, what’s up?”

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“Not much, I’ve got a question for you boys though.” My dad stood over by us and I couldn’t read his expression. I wasn’t sure if he was angry with us or not. It was intimidating.

“Yea, sure Dad.” I responded with a gulp. My father was a scary man, he could flip his lid any second and we’d have no warning.

“Well, I’m reopening the bar soon, and I need some new bartenders, mine quit. I was wondering if any of you would be interested.”

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I immediately jumped up. This was perfect, I would get a job, I’d be working nights so it’d be easier to avoid Stone, and I’d be working alongside my father. We never had a great relationship, I tried to not let it bother me but it always did. Now was my chance to get close to him.

“I’d love to.” I answered enthusiastically.

“Are you sure, what about the band?” He asked, making my stomach drop.

“Um, it broke up. It’s ok though, it was just a pipe dream.” I admitted.

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“Well alright, meet me in the attic later so we can start training.” He gave me the first genuine smile I’d seen from him since mom left, before heading up the stairs. I sat back down on the couch with a huge smile on my face. I couldn’t believe how perfect this was.

———-

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 Later that day after Al left I met my dad upstairs. I hadn’t been up here since I was younger and snuck up here with my sister. It seemed like a million years ago but the place still looked the same.

“Alright, now pour that one into there.” My dad instructed while pointing to the bottles. Mixing drinks was a lot harder than I thought, it was gonna take some time to learn all of this. But the busier the better, I suppose.

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The bottle I was using slipped out of my hands and fell to the floor with a crash. “Whoops.” I smiled cheekily at my dad, hoping he wouldn’t freak out.

“That’s alright, keep going.” He encouraged. It was odd behavior from him, but I didn’t question it. It seemed like he was actually trying to be a father to me. Though it was a little late, it was still nice.

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It took me a few hours to get the first drink right, but when I did I couldn’t help but feel extremely proud of myself. I was finally starting to get my life on track. It seemed like my dad was trying too. I just hoped we could stay on this path.

Lake Fae Chapter 15: Seven

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“So what kind of robot were you thinking? There are many different types.” Lyra took me over to the bot emporium as soon as I got back to the future.

“I’m not sure, what do you suggest?”

“Well, you seem like a musical guy, am I correct?” She guessed.

“You are actually, I used to be in a band back home.” I smiled solemnly. I hadn’t even thought of the band, we had to be broken up now because of the issues between me and Freesia. It sucked, I lost my girl and my band.

“Well they have musical robots, I could show you one if you’d like.”

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“Yeah, that would be great.” I smiled at her. It would be nice to have someone to jam with, even if that someone was a robot

“Great, let me show the one I know of.” She smiled and guided me across the emporium.

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“This is Seven, she’s a musical robot, but that’s not all she does. She can do whatever you like, she can cook and protect your house. Anything you want.” Lyra took a seat while I examined Seven. It was even cooler than the one I saw last time I was here, and I thought that one was perfect.

“I’ll take her.” I smiled excitedly. I couldn’t wait to own my very own robot.

“Just stick the cash in there and she should come to life.” Lyra explained while pointing to the money slot on the machine.

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“Hello, Master. I am Seven.” The robot stepped off the platform and addressed me.

“This is so cool.” I turned to Lyra and smiled giddily. I felt like all my dreams were coming true, I felt like I was living in one of my old books. “Hello Seven,” I turned back to my robot. “Let’s go to our new home.”

“Yes Master, I will follow you.”

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I smiled at Seven even though I wasn’t entirely sure she could recognize emotion, but I didn’t really care. I was too happy and I needed to express it. Things were looking up.

———–

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Jamming with Seven was a lot different than jamming with my band. She played a strange laser instrument, but it was the coolest thing I’ve heard in a long time. It was the best jam session ever.

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“Wow, you guys sound awesome together.” Lyra commented from her spot on the couch.

“You think?” I asked with a shy smile.

“Yea, you guys should become a music group.”

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“Ah, I don’t know. Last band I was in just broke up, it was pretty messy.” I put my guitar down and walked over to her.

“You done jamming for the day?” I was glad she didn’t pry into things any further.

“Yea, now it’s time to do my ‘after practice’ ritual.” I laughed.

“Oh? What’s that?” She asked.

“I’ll show you.” I grabbed her hand and pulled her over the the elevators, the two of us giggling like weirdos.

———–

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“What is this stuff?” Lyra asked a few minutes later as we sat in my bedroom.

“Weed, do you guys not have it here?” I asked while taking a puff from the joint.

“We don’t have anything like this here. All of our drugs are used for strictly medical purposes. But this stuff is amazing.” She chuckled to herself.

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“Well good thing you’ve got me, I’ve got a whole bunch of this stuff, and even stronger stuff if you’d like.” I offered. I had a feeling getting access to medical marijuana would be difficult, but I could always go back to my time and buy some there.

“Master, this is not a good idea.'” Seven crossed her arms and stood over me.

“Don’t worry Seven, I’ve been doing this for years. We’ll be fine.”

“It’s not a good idea.” She pestered.

“It’s one joint, Seven. We’ll be fine.”

“You must be careful, Master. Meddling has consequences.”

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“Ha-ha, ok. Go sit down or something.” I chuckled, the weed was starting to hit me so I didn’t really pay attention to what Seven was saying and sprawled out on the floor.

“This is the most fun I’ve had in a long time.” Lyra laid down on the floor next to me.

“Get ready then, we’re gonna have a blast together.”

———-

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Within a few hours, the rest of the house had joined us and all of us were high as hell. It was fun, I didn’t really know these people all that well but now we were starting to become friends.

“So Lake, what did you do in your own time?” Ursa asked from across the circle.

“What do you mean?”

“Like what did you do for a job?”

“Oh, um, I hadn’t really gotten to that yet.” I admitted, I had depended so heavily on my music career that I didn’t even bother getting a day job.

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“Why?” She asked, she was prying but I didn’t mind, I guess I would want to know about someone who traveled to my time.

“I was in a band, I was kinda depending on that to take off.” I shook my head and half-laughed. “But that didn’t work out, so I came here.”

“What happened?”

“My drummer slept with my girlfriend.”

“That sucks, man.” Canis chimed in from next to me.

“Whatever, doesn’t matter. I’m in the future and I’ve got a robot. Jokes on them.”

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“Why did you travel through time, Lake?” Lyra asked hesitantly.

“Um, well you know I was trying to go back in time, right?” I looked around as they nodded. “Well I was trying to go back and save my sister. She drowned in a storm and my brother and I thought we could save her.”

“Oh my god, I’m so sorry, that’s awful.” Andromeda placed a hand on her heart dramatically.

“Yea, it sucks. I know I’m gonna have to go back to my time soon but I’d much rather stay here for the rest of my life.” I sighed and adjusted my bandanna.

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“What’re you gonna do when you go back?” Canis asked.

“Probably still pursue music. I’ll have to get a new band or try a solo career. But I won’t give up just yet.”

“That’s good, but don’t you think you should try and get a job? Maybe just something part-time so you can have some money? Maybe get your own place?” He suggested, and it actually made sense.

“Y’know, I’ll do that. I’m gonna need my own space soon. I need to get away from my family, I can’t tell them that I didn’t even try to save my sister.”

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“So why don’t you try?” Orion suggested.

“I screwed up. Big time. If I tried to go and talk her out of going to the beach, she wouldn’t listen to me. We were on bad terms, she’d go anyway and the same thing would happen all over. It’s not worth going through that pain again.”

“I guess that makes sense. What’re you gonna tell your brother?”

“Nothing. I’m gonna avoid him for as long as I can, he works a lot and if I start working too I’ll never see him.” It was the best I could come up with, I didn’t want to tell him the truth but I also didn’t want to lie to him.

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“What’re you gonna do with Seven when you go back?” Andromeda asked after a few moments of silence.

“I-I don’t know, take her with me?” I questioned.

“I guess you could, but how will you explain that to your brother?”

“Um, I guess I could go back without her, then when my brother’s gone I can come back and bring her home.” I suggested.

“That’s genius.” Lyra giggled girlishly.

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“Yea, I guess” I chuckled.

“When do you think you’ll go back?” Canis asked sadly.

“Dunno, some time soon I guess.”

“Aw, that’s too bad, this was fun.” He frowned and glanced at the box of weed.

“If you want, I can leave it here with you guys. I can always buy more when I get home.” I offered, even though I didn’t have a reliable dealer anymore. No matter how much I wanted to get high, there was no way I was ever talking to Blackberry again.

“That’d be really awesome, actually.”

“Awesome.” I smiled, I was actually kind of looking forward to going home. I had a plan to get my life back on track and I couldn’t wait to put that plan into action. Maybe I wouldn’t be a complete failure after all.