Graham stepped out into the cool evening air. It had been several weeks since his argument with Jack. The teen had been abrupt but polite when directly spoken to, but hadn’t spoken a word to Graham that wasn’t a ‘yes’, ‘no’, or ‘I don’t know’ in close to a month.
As he ran, Graham couldn’t stop thinking about Jack’s words. ‘Indentured Servant’. It was relentless, he couldn’t get those two words out of his head. In his heart, the man knew his son didn’t really want him to go to jail, but Graham didn’t want Jack to be imposed upon either by the Government because Graham neglected to read the fine print. Graham could completely understand Jack’s thought of Indentured Servitude. Jack and his children and grandchildren on down the line would all be part of this project now like it or not. Graham was ashamed having put his child and all future generations in this position. The weight of this responsibility was nearly unbearable.
As Graham continued his evening jog around the neighborhood, he noticed that a few families had finally finished their construction as well.
There weren’t many families out here. There were only a few homes after nearly 20 years now in Oasis Springs. The Government Land Grants in Oasis Springs were a bust. Graham couldn’t help but wonder if the towns of Willow Creek or New Crest had done any better in all these years.
As he glanced at the homes and could still smell the familiar scent of construction, Graham wondered if the people living with those soft lights glowing in those new homes knew their children were obligated to continue as well.
“They probably weren’t silly enough to have not had someone double check and explain any tricky legal passages.” he thought somewhat bitterly.
Darkness continued to close in and Graham started a slow jog home. As he approached his newly completed home, he marveled again how beautiful it was and how every dime for this home had been earned originally by his own two hands. Then his lovely Siobhan made herself part of his life and contributed as well.
“Damn it, I’m proud of this! I’m proud of the kids Siobhan and I have raised,” he said outloud. “This may not be Jack’s dream though. I need to respect that.”
He thought of his little girl’s new bedroom and the final bit to their completed house. The contract was completely met and then some now. Emilee had been so happy to be in her own ‘big girl’ room all by herself. Jack teased her a bit and told her she was too wimpy to fight off the monster beneath her bed.
Emilee assured her big brother that she’d make friends with the monster.
“If anyone can do it, you can Em. You talk enough people that befriend you just to get you to be quiet!” Jack laughed. “Night little sister.”
The first night, Jack had to come in with the ‘friendly’ spray and soak the carpet beneath her bed.
Each morning after that, if asked about the monster, Emilee would smile and say she hadn’t had any luck making friends yet. The monster may need another dose of friendly spray.
Graham was just glad one of his kids still talked to him.
A/N: Just in case there is any confusion, my Oasis Springs still only has the Whittaker House 001 and the restaurant on it, those two houses in the above neighborhood picture are scenery at the end of the neighborhood!