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Anyway, I really did go home after the carrousel. First, Phoebe and I
walked out of the park and took the bus to Grand Central, to get my god dam Gladstone’s out of the strong box there. Though it had stopped hammering down, I was still pretty wet. Boy, it really came down like a madman. I still had ‘Phoebe’s’ red hunting hat on, it was soaking wet though. I didn’t care though.
“I’m glad we’re both going home now, Holden”, she said.
“I’m just ready to get this over with”, I said, “Mom and dad will cry.”
“Don’t worry, Holden. It’ll be okay”, Phoebe said.
She squeezed my hand which she was holding and smiled. It just about killed me.
We had most of Phoebe’s Christmas dough, so we got my Gladstone’s, and took the bus to 72nd street. There were a bunch of kids at the back of the bus.
They were all horsing around, laughing and all. We sat next to them. We took up a lot of room, since we had my two suitcases, plus my old suitcase with Phoebe’s stuff in it.
I heard some kid say, “Phoebe, your brother found you!” I looked across the bus. It was that kid I met in the park yesterday, the girls who roller skates I’d tightened and all.
“Holden’s coming to see me in the play”, she said to the girl.
She tugged my arm, “This is my brother Holden, Holden, this is Susie.
the play too!”
“Yes”, Susie said, “It should be really great”. She was so polite. I
really liked her. I usually like Phoebe’s friends when I first meet them. Phoebe and Susie helped me get my mind off of how I was about to face my parents. I was worried about my mom. I tried not to think of how hysterical she’d get. Phoebe said mom and dad were coming home at around 7. It was 4 now.
We got off the bus at 72nd street, said goodbye to Susie and all, and then
“How are Mr. and Mrs. Antolini?” she asked me.
“They’re doing pretty good”, I said.
Of course I would never tell her what really happened. I still couldn’t believe it. Had he always liked me in a flirty way?
We got home, and I took my suitcases into my room and I lay down on my bed. I was pretty tired. All of a sudden i got to thinking about Pencey. I wondered what they were all saying about me back there. I started thinking maybe I was wrong, leaving so suddenly after that god dam little tiff with Stradlater. He’s really not a bad guy. In fact, I sort of missed him. I’ll give old Jane a bell tomorrow, if it’s not too crazy here.
So I unpacked a few things in my room, and smoked all of my cigarettes. I was so god dam nervous. Around 7 o’clock, mom and dad walked in together. At the time, I was
right there in the hallway, so they saw me right away. I really didn’t care if they yelled at me. I felt numb and empty inside. I was really hungry, but too worried to eat. If you want to know the truth, I was in pretty bad shape.
Even though I changed and washed before mom and dad came home, I felt that I must have looked a state. I hadn’t shaved in a few days.
Anyway, they looked all dressed up and nice when they came through the door.
“Holden! What’s going on? What are you doing here? Its’ Tuesday”, my dad
I took a deep breath, and then started coughing all over the place. Christ, what a time to have a coughing fit ey?
I finally cleared my throat.
“Well”, I said, “I…I got kicked out again. I’m really sorry”
“Damn it, Holden! I can’t take it anymore!” Dad yelled.
Mom had already started sobbing. I felt awful. Seeing Mom cry really killed me.
“Holden, what the hell is wrong with you!? I paid a ton of money to send you to these schools and all you do is get kicked out every god dam time! I know you’re not stupid! You can pass these classes! I know it’s that you’re not applying yourself!”
Boy was he mad. His face was all red, and all these veins were sticking out in his neck. I was kinda scared that he would hit me. We’re a pretty non-violent family. I was thinking about Allie the whole time Dad was yelling at me. I don’t know how long the whole thing lasted.
“Damn it, Holden, you’ve really pushed my buttons this time! Look at how well DB and Phoebe are doing. Can’t you follow their lead?”
Mom was just sobbing the whole time that the argument was going on.
I started drifting off again, I thought about Mr. Antolini. I could be there now, having an intellectual conversation with him, smoking a cigarette. I kept thinking about him patting me on the head. Does he look at me as another son figure? Or does he have feelings for me? Or was he just really drunk? It didn’t seem right at all. When I got there, he should have noticed how tired I was and just let me sleep.
So, Dad was kept on yelling at me and sent me to my room.
I walked into my room, shut the door, and lay down on my bed again
and lit a cigarette that I found in my hounds tooth jacket pocket. I hardly ever see Dad this mad.
I heard my mom crying in their bedroom, and my father trying to comfort her.
I started thinking of the military school. I knew I’d hate it there, even more than the other schools I’d been to. The next thing I knew, I was sort of crying.
Normally I’m not a huge crier, but here I was, crying my god dam eyes out. I heard a little knock at the door, and old Phoebe came in.
“I heard you crying, don’t worry Holden, everything will blow over”.
She sat on the side of my bed and hugged me. Trust Phoebe to do something phony like that, but all the same, it was kinda cute.
Phoebe went to bed at around 9 o’clock and I was still awake by 11. I couldn’t sleep. I felt kinda weak, and I kept coughing like a madman.
That’s about it, that’s all I’m gonna tell you. I could go on and tell you about the military school and Phoebe and all. But I think I told too much already.
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