Okay this is different this time. This is like choose your own adventure except I pick it for you because this site does not allow choose your own adventure stories. This was meant to be one but I changed it. You will be a character in this story who gets to be Joon's new housekeeper and you have borderline to mild Asperger's.
Gosh darn, I can't get the title and chapter down lower. Every time I hit save, it comes back up.
If You Became Joon's Smail.
You have just lost your job. The business went bankrupt so everyone was let go. Now you have zero income. You desperately need a job, so you sign up at a labor ready. You fill out some paper work. You put in your name and address, date of birth, your past employment and you list your skills and interests. Your interests are:
Your Skills are:
Then you list your experience. You can clean, cook, organize, paint buildings or billboards, work at a cash register, sort the files, take care of children, and you list you volunteered in a group home.
After you are done filling out the paper work, you turn it in and they say they will call you.
You are still living at home with your family. You hate it because they all drive you crazy. They leave things in the wrong spot, they don't pick up after themselves, your brothers do parties from time to time, you don't like them or or their friends being in your personal space which is the whole basement, you hate the noise your family makes but luckily they leave you space and leave you to your routines and don't bug you for unexpected things unless it's an emergency or something urgent. You have never had a boyfriend and you are young. You have been working to save money for your own apartment but you are expected to help pay for school. You have gone for childcare and cooking and looking to be a teacher. You have worked through the school in the file room. Now it's summer and school is out.
You have Asperger's syndrome and don't even know it. You have never been diagnosed or ever heard of it. You have been labeled with other things instead and you are no longer on medication because you didn't like being drugged. You felt they didn't help. You have always known you were different but never understood why so you figured it was the way you were treated. Now you are aware of all these labels you have had and your past problems. Your family has no idea why you are different or why some things are an issue for you that aren't to them. Your parents have done their best to understand you over the years and seeking you help and helping you get a job. You have done some volunteer work in high school and middle school to try and fit in and be normal but kids could never appreciate you. So you have given up but that didn't stop you from getting a job or going to school. You had worked very hard to get this far.
* * *
A whole week has passed and you have applied at a few places but still no phone call for a job interview. But your mother wakes you up one day with the phone. "Who is it?" you ask.
"Something from labor ready," she says.
You take the phone from her and say "Hello?"
Mom leaves your bedroom.
"Hi this is Cheryl from Labor Ready and we have found an opening," Cheryl says. "Someone name Benny Pearl needs a housekeeper and he has a sick sister who needs to be watched. She has a mental illness and need supervision."
"What does she have?" you ask.
"I have no idea," Cheryl says. "This job will start today and you would need to be there by eight.I know it's short notice-"
You get excited because this is interesting and you're dying to meet her and get know her and see what kind of illness she has.
"I'll take it," you say interrupting.
"You will?" Cheryl says. "Great. His address is North 301 Cedar Street Spokane Washington and his phone number is for in case you need directions."
You get all excited. You get out of bed and write it down. Then you hang up and call Benny and tell him you are the new housekeeper and you need to know how to get there. He gives you directions and you know where the downtown is and you know Maple Street Bridge so you get dressed, brush your hair and teeth and grab a package of two pop tarts and you gather up some of your stuff that keeps you company. You generally dislike change and unexpected things but this was different. You got a job and you were expecting you be working any day for labor ready. You tell your mom the exciting news. She is happy for you. You head on over to Benny's.
* * *
You arrive in a cute neighborhood that is right by downtown Spokane and is along Spokane River. The Maple Street Bridge crosses over the neighborhood and you wonder how can people stand the noise of traffic crossing over. You see the ugly green house and notice there is a sun room built onto it. You park your car and get out and notice you can hardly hear the traffic on the bridge. You get your stuff and lock your car and you go up to the door. You ring the doorbell and then you see the other front door opens, there you see a woman who looks to be in her early twenties. She isn't that much older than you. She has on a sundress and has shoulder length light brown hair and she isn't that tall. She is only three inches shorter than you and she has some paint on her hands and arms.
"You must be the new Smail," she says.
"What?" you ask.
"You look young for a Smail," she says. "Not much older than I am."
"What's a Smail?" you ask.
She doesn't answer and then the guy comes to the door and says you must be you and he asks how old you are. You tell him and then he introduces himself as Benny and introduces the woman as his little sister Joon. Benny looks to be in about his late twenties or early thirties.
"That was fast," Joon tells Benny. "You alreay got a new one and you get someone who isn't even that much older than I am."
"Joon," says Benny.
You ask, "Is she the sick one?"
"Yes," he said. "I'll tell you about it."
He invites you inside and while Joon goes in her sun room, Benny tells you about how crazy she is.
"She is mentally ill and if she runs hot and cold on you, don't worry about it. Just ignore it. Just let her go her routine, she likes them and if anything happens that interrupts her pattern, she flips out and it is not a pretty situation. Don't let her wander off, and one more thing, if she starts talking to herself, just ignore it. She sometimes hears voices in her head and that comes with the territory and make sure that nothing happens to her."
"Okay," you say understanding the thing for routine.
Then you ask, "Does she have schizophrenia?"
"Yeah," he said. "Well, I need to get to work so call me if there are any problems."
"What work do I do?" you ask.
"You don't have to worry about it but if you want to clean, you can. All I need is someone to watch her. It does help when you clean because I am busy with my job. It's great to come home to relax and not have to clean as much."
You are unaware that Benny doesn't really trust you with his sister because of your young age and he prefers older people, not someone who has only been an adult for a few years. After all, you look like a teenager.
Benny leaves you his phone number and then leaves but he forgets to tell you something.
You feel like a baby sitter than a housekeeper. You find it odd he would call someone a housekeeper than house sitter or baby sitter. After all, you are watching his sister.
You wander in the sun room and see it's more like an art studio. Doorknobs hanging on the ceiling, art portraits everywhere lined up against the wall, some windows are painted, you see a desk in there with a chair, a couch and of course Joon painting. There is even some dried up paint on the floor and you see the art supplies, paint cans, paintbrushes, art tools, rolled up paper and then
She sighs again and starts to pace and keeps sighing. You are unaware why she is doing it. You figure it's her schizophrenia.
You start to touch things. You feel her artwork and then she throws something at you but misses. Then you feel her painting she is working on and Joon screams as she kicks the chair, "Get the heck out!"
You jump and run out in a flash closing the door behind you. That was what Benny forgot to tell you about, do not hang out in her room while she is painting, she hates it.
You see the house is a mess so you decide to start cleaning. It's driving you crazy. You have no idea where to start. You decide to start with the dishes. Joon comes and sees you and gives you the silent treatment as she watches. It makes you nervous.
"What?" you ask.
She doesn't answer. She just keeps her arms folded and taps her foot.
Then you pick up a cup and it slips out of your hand and it drops on the floor and breaks.
Joon starts shrieking at you.
She's found a few reasons to dislike you. One: You're her peer. Two: Your hair looks out of place even though you had brushed it this morning. Three: You talk funny according to her. Four: You don't give very good eye contact so you were unfriendly according to her. Five: You're a careless person because you broke that cup. Six: You're too loud because of the dishes.
You jump and say it was just an accident and you will clean it up.
She tells you to leave them alone and get out of her sight.
You run out of the kitchen and up the stairs. You think she is one sick nasty person.
You see Joon's room and notice she has a queen bed and lot of books and dolls on the shelf and some other toys. You see some photo frames on the stand next to her bed. You look at them and see a picture of their parents and of Benny and Joon from when they were kids. Joon's facial expression looks different like she isn't there, you could see it in her eyes. You would guess Benny looked to be about seven or eight and Joon about three or four years old in the picture.
Then you go in Benny's room and see he has a goldfish and he has a phone in there. You pick it up and dial the number Benny gave you.
Someone picks up. "Hello?"
"Hi is Benny there?" you say.
"Benny, some lady is on the phone," you hear him call.
You hear clanging in the background and some machine going off and then "Hello?" says Benny.
"Joon is yelling at me," you say.
"I told you to just ignore it," he says.
"But I didn't do anything. She yelled at me when she saw me in the sunroom."
"Oh don't go in there while she is painting," Benny says. "She hates that."
"And she got mad at me when I tried to do the dishes," you say.
"Don't worry about the dishes," says Benny. "She will run hot and cold on you."
You finally ask what that means since idioms is something you have troubles with.
"She will be sweet and calm and then next thing she is screaming at you," Benny replies.
"Oh," you say. Then you thank him and tell him bye and Benny says he will see you soon at six.
You hang up and realize this was not the job you expected. You weren't expecting to watch some mental case who gets spiteful for no reason.
Okay what happens next? Do you quit or do you stay because you are no quitter?
You don't get to choose, I do. Stay tuned for the next chapter.