Sculpted by the Sculptor
Two days after Steve said I was his princess, our steadfast avoidance (which is pretty miraculous considering he’s building the house next door and my balcony looks onto both the ocean and the house), and Brittany reconsidering whether I am someone she wants to associate with, I receive a surprise.
“Calista! Calista Montgomery!”
I’m half-asleep in the sun hugging my laptop to my chest when that voice, that very familiar voice breaks my reverie. I look over the balcony to see my seventy-year old grandmother looking very young in her white jean shorts and bright red “Go Nationals!” t-shirt.
“Grams?” I almost pinch myself to see if I’m dreaming. Why is she here? Did she really stick up a webcam and is distraught over my inability to connect with the human race?
“Yes, dear, it’s me and I’ve brought Megan!”
“Are you having issues again, Calista?”
And, no, it’s not my imagination that Clayton appears in time to snort. How does he do that? But alongside Clayton are the others, with Steve hanging in the back taking in my grandmother and Megan, my best friend and the girl most guys want in their lives.
I hustle down the steps and take turns hugging both Grams and Megan. “What are you doing here?” I ask.
Megan looks a little embarrassed, but Grams not so much. I’m pretty sure she’s never been embarrassed a day in her life. She pats her silvery blonde hair and grins. “We’ve rented a house here.”
“Why?” I ask.
“Because it’s a beach and it’s the Fourth of July.”
“Not til next week.”
“But we’ll be here to help you celebrate,” Grams says and then turns to look at the builders next door. “Hello, men! Have you met my granddaughter?”
If my face wasn’t burning before, it is now and not from sunburn. I glance at Steve who’s grinning. Clayton is eyeing my grandmother; he seems to find women of all ages attractive, except for me and I’m okay with that. And then I see Steve’s eyes move to Megan. Megan, the sweetheart, who doesn’t have all of the quirks and snootiness that I do. For the first time in my life, I’m jealous of my best friend. She’s the beautiful person inside and out that I’ve always wanted to be, but I’ve never been jealous before.
“Do you want a snack?” I ask Grams and Megan.
“Yes,” says Clayton and suddenly the builders are taking a breaking and coming to visit.
“House party!” Brittany yells. Where did she come from?
I glance at Steve who trails behind the others. His eyes are on Megan whose sweet smile makes her look like an angel. A little flame I didn’t even know was burning inside of me cringes under the dousing of cold, cold water. Usually I’m fine with this reality; I’d accepted it years ago in junior high and high school. But all of the newness that I thought was bubbling inside reverts and I am once again shy, backwards Calista Montgomery who doesn’t fall into the background as much as hold the spotlight so my best friend can shine.