Disclaimer: I don't own them. And if I did, this would have never happened to Bobby.
A/N: So, I thought of this last Sunday, and I haven't gotten time to write it or post it until now. I kind of have been in a down mood lately. Lots of things have been going on with my family, and it just kind of fit to do Bobby. There's a little of me and my family in every character.
Eleven year old Bobby Goren hopped up the stairs to his front door. He just had a good day at school and he was looking forward to reading a book he started the night before.
He put his hand on the doorknob and twisted. It didn't budge. Oh no. Bobby thought. Mom only ever locks the doors when she's in one of her moods. He sighed and then pulled up the "Welcome" mat to retrieve the key to the front door. He unlocked the door, put the key back, and walked inside.
The house was in all sorts of disarray. The drawers were all open and shuffled through. The doors to all the closets were open, the contents strewn about.
Bobby shuffled through the disaster area that was the living room into the kitchen.
All the drawers were open and the pots, pans, and utensils were all over the floor. He scanned the countertop. He looked at the knife rack, the biggest knife was missing.
Oh no. He said to himself. He then very carefully went looking for his mother. He started in her room. The door was closed. He went to open the door, but it was locked. He sighed. Of course this wasn't going to be easy.
He knocked tentatively on the door. "Mom? Mom, it's Bobby, can you open the door please?"
He heard some shuffling around from inside the room. The door then opened a crack.
"Oh Bobby, thank goodness. It's really you. Where is your brother?" She asked.
"He's at a friend's house, Ma." He then saw the glint of the knife. "Can I come in please?" He asked carefully.
She looked wildly around. "Did you bring them with you?"
"Who are "they", Mom?" Bobby asked, not really expecting an answer.
She then threw open the door, grabbed the front of his shirt and pulled him into the room.
"They're all around, Bobby. They're coming to get us!" She screamed.
Frances then ran in between the bed and the wall ducking down and dragging Bobby with her. Bobby kept an eye on the knife the entire time. She was moving it around without really thinking about it. She probably forgot she has it. Bobby told himself.
She then wrapped her arms around Bobby, the knife touching his arm. So much for trying to get out of here. If I move at all I'll be cut. Bobby mentally sighed.
"Mom, if we waited in the liv-" He was then cut off by his mother.
"No! No, if we go out there they can get us!" She shrieked.
Then we wait.
Bobby didn't know how long it was before his mother fell asleep. After her breathing was even and he was sure she was asleep he eased his way out of her arms, on the way grabbing the knife. He quietly crept across the room. When he got to the door he looked back to make sure she was still asleep. Seeing the she was he then carefully opened the door and let himself out of the room.
Once out of the room he saw how late it actually was. The sun was setting, casting shadows across the mess of a house. Bobby looked around at the mess his mother had made. "I'd better clean all this up before Dad and Frank get home." Bobby muttered to himself.
After much cleaning, sweeping, straightening, and tidying the house looked decent. When he put the last fork away he sighed of relief. He looked around at his handiwork. Much better.
He then trudged to his room. He went over to his bed and kneeled by it. He lifted up a floorboard and grabbed a book. He smiled.
He wasn't not allowed to read, his father and brother just thought it was stupid. "There are better ways to spend your time." They would say to him. But Bobby loved it. Reading let him escape from the world. He could get inside a character's head and forget about the real world. He would read and for that brief moment in time everything was okay.
He opened the book, found the page he had left off at last night and began to read.
A few minutes later he heard footsteps coming down the hall. He listened for a moment trying to figure out who it was. After a moment he figured out that it was Frank. The footsteps were shorter than and not as heavy as his father's. He motioned to put the book back in its hiding spot, but it was too late. Frank had already opened the door. Bobby tried to look as innocent as possible.
"Bobby boy, what are you doing, man? Why are you wasting your time on these stupid books? You know what? I'm telling dad. I'm sick and tired of this book crap. It's time you learned to do more manly things." Frank told him.
"No Frankie, please, don't tell dad." Bobby pleaded.
But at that moment John Goren walked in. "Don't tell me what, Bobby?" He asked sternly. Bobby stared at the floor, finding it very interesting all of a sudden. "I said don't tell me what?"
"That he was reading a book." Frank supplied with a grin after a moment of silence.
John then looked past Bobby on the opposite side of the bed. He saw the book and grabbed it before Bobby could stop him. "Is this what you were reading?" He held it up. "I think we need to teach you to act like a man, boy. Lesson One: men don't read." He then opened the book and began ripping out the pages.
"No!" Bobby screamed flailing his arms for his book.
Frank and his father started openly laughing at him.
Frances then bust through the door. "They're here! They're here! Hide or they'll get you!"
John then walked over to her, dropping the book on the floor. "What are you talking about you crazy bitch?"
"They're going to get us if we don't hide right away!"
John then punched her squarely in the gut. Not hard enough to do any real damage, but just hard enough to hurt her and get her to pull herself together. "Bastard!" She slapped him on the cheek. She then turned on her heel and slammed the door. They heard footsteps down the hall and then another door slam, her bedroom.
John turned around facing his children. "Lesson Two: All a girl really needs is a punch to wake her up." He chucked to himself and then fell silent. After a moment he turned to Bobby. "You want to know what I just noticed?" Bobby didn't answer. "Answer me, damn it."
Bobby shook his head. "What did you notice?" He asked, his voice barely audible.
"I noticed that whenever your mother has one of these break downs you are the only one with her." He then poked him hard in the chest.
"I didn't do anything! She's like that when I get home from school!" Bobby pleaded.
"Bull shit." His father yelled pushing him forcefully on the bed. "She's like this because of you. I hope you're happy." He spat. 'If you decide you would like to be a man anytime soon Frank and I will be at the tracks." And with that they both walked out of the room.
Bobby then got off the bed and dropped to the floor. He began picking up the pieces of his book.
How could he think that it is my fault mom is like this? What could I possibly do to make her act like this? He asked himself.
And Frank… just selling me out like that. Some brother he is. He used to protect me against dad, and now he's aiding him. What happened?
Bobby then felt a lump in his throat and the threat of tears.
No, no, I can't cry. I won't allow myself to cry. I can't be concerned for them anymore.
He then had finished picking up all the different pages of the book.
He then lifted up the floorboard and carefully put what was left of his book back to fix at a later time. He then grabbed a different book, confident that his father and brother wouldn't be back for many hours if not the night.
He sat down on his bed and began to read. He thought about how interesting the characters were. How they could possibly get out of their situation. And for that brief moment in time he wasn't Bobby Goren. He was just an eleven year old boy enjoying a book. It was his refuge from the world.