I stay quiet on the ride home. Fanboy doesn't make much conversation, which would normally be a problem, but this time I appreciate it. It gives me a chance to think. The first thing that comes to mind is that I can't live the same way I have been. Fanboy is right. Only I really know what makes me worthwhile. I just have to take some time to find it. I'm reminded of this book I read once: Meditations on the First Philosophy by René Descartes. See, Descartes was this seventeenth century French philosopher. About midway through his life, he realized that his old way of doing things wasn't working for him. He went about trying to destroy the old foundations of his life and start over from a better foundation. That's kind of what I want to do too. I don't know where my self-worth is, but I know where it isn't and that's in a jail cell. I never want to see that place again, which means step one is no more stealing cars. Ditto for the mental health unit, which means step two is no more suicide attempts. Not that I have to anyway. As long as Fanboy is here with me, I'll be staying in the land of the living.
"Are you OK?" Fanboy asks me, breaking the silence. I can hear the note of concern in his voice. I take a deep breath and consider that question. Am I OK? I suppose that's one of the great questions. "I don't know," I admit, giving an honest answer. That's another thing I've decided on: honesty. I mean sure, I've lied before, but now that I think about it, I never really got anything worthwhile out of it, so the lying gets thrown out. I guess I'm not up to Descartes' level just yet, but I'm getting there. I go back to answering Fanboy's question. "I think maybe I will be," I say to him, "I've just got some stuff I have to get over." He nods at me, giving me a smile while still managing to keep his eyes on the road. It's actually pretty impressive that he's not looking at me and still manages to make me feel like everything is going to be O.K.
The ride doesn't take as long as I initially thought that it would. Fanboy parks the car in front of my house and quietly steps out of the car. He comes around to my side and opens my door. He doesn't have to do that, but I appreciate the gesture anyway. I walk step out of the door and make my way for the steps. Fanboy follows me and that makes me smile. He's letting me know that he's with me, every step of the way. When we reach the door, he takes my hand, just like he did the night I got arrested. The memory comes rushing back to me. I was too scared even to ring the doorbell, scared of losing the moment. But with his help, I was able to do it, just like I'll be able to do this. See, I decided something else on the way here. I have to make things right with Roger. I've been incredibly unfair to him. My reasons for being angry at him may not have been as justified as I thought. I mean, yeah, from an objective standpoint, his smoking caused Mom to die and I was resentful of the way he treated me, but it wasn't fair. It's like Fanboy one said to me: adults are just trying. Maybe I should give Roger the benefit of the doubt on this one.
"Together?" Fanboy offers me, looking at the doorbell. I understand his offering and I nod. He brings my hand towards the small button that works the doorbell and together we extend our fingers toward the button. The sound of the doorbell echoes through the house. I hear the sound of Roger's footsteps almost instantaneously and I begin to suspect that he was waiting for me. Of course, that makes sense. Fanboy probably told him that I was coming. I'm grateful for that. It means I have less explaining to do. I want this to be as easy as possible. The door opens and Roger is standing in the doorway. He seems glad to see me, which surprises me a little.
"Hello Kyra," he greets me, "It's good to see you." I give him a warm, easy smile, trying to be as friendly as possible. "It's good to see you too," I tell him, before turning back to Fanboy, "Thank you for the ride." He gives me a look that says "no problem" and walks back down the stairs. I turn back to Roger, who smiles at me. "He's a good guy," Roger says, "You're lucky to know him." I nod at him and smile back. I'm glad that he said that. "I know I am," I tell him, "I'm really lucky, for a lot of reasons." I give him a serious look. "I have something I need to tell you," I say to him, "I need to tell you that…that I'm sorry." I hear my voice choke on those last words and I can feel the tears starting to pour from my eyes. "I'm sorry about the way I treated you," I say through the tears, "I never had any right to be angry with you." To my surprise, Roger comes to me and wraps his arms around me. This is a sensation I'm getting used to, but not from Roger. "You did have a right," he tells me, "It is true that it's my fault…that your mother died, but that's not the worst. I never understood you. I never really saw what you were going through." I pull myself out of his embrace and shake my head in an attempt to reject that statement. "No," I say, "That's not right. You may not have understood, but you did try. You made an effort, which is more than I can say for myself." I decide to end the conversation there and head to my old room. It's exactly the way it was three months ago. So, Roger had always hoped that I would come back. That makes me feel slightly comforted. My computer is on the desk, but I decide not to use it tonight. Instead, I decide to take the next step of my Cartesian quest. I start with a change of outfit, getting out of the prison issued clothing and into something suitable for sleep. I turn off all the lights and sit on my bed and just think.