Disclaimer: I don't own Degrassi: The next generation or any of its characters

Eli

I looked from the upstairs window of my father's mechanic shop…. The fight between him and my former step mother Vanessa is getting pretty heated. Apparently she wants to shift custody of my younger sister Eliza to my father because she's re-marrying and the new guy doesn't feel comfortable having her there.

My father is fighting it because he doesn't know how to raise a girl. It's just mostly me and him with the exception of a few step moms. My mom lives in Miami. She couldn't handle staying here and raising me… I see her once a year and she sends me a postcard on Christmas. I don't blame her. My life is sweet… Well sort of. Up until the dance things were great. Now Degrassi is a prison and I'm grounded for a week which means I have to come straight to my dad's shop from school so that he can "watch" me….

The fight downstairs ended with my father busting out the headlight in Vanessa's Volvo. Eliza sat on the sidewalk with her bags and listened to her music. Vanessa tooted the horn twice, promised to sue and drove off leaving nothing but gravel in her path. My dad took Eliza's bags and bought them…where I was. She moped behind him.

My father practically slammed the bags on the couch.

"Stay here with your brother Eliza!"

She didn't protest. It's not like she needs to be watched anyway. She's only one year younger than me. Most people wouldn't know we were related if we didn't tell them because she's half black. I mean we do have some similarities. The jet back hair and dark sense of style, but other than that…. She looks like her mom.

She plopped down on the couch and flipped through the songs on her mp3 player.

"So you're here to stay again huh?"

She didn't answer.

"Well I can take a hint. If you don't wanna talk…"
"Eli just shut up…. Why is Morty outside unattended?"

"I'm on punishment."

"What'd you do? Steal dad's boots again?"

"No, I lied to cover my girlfriend's tracks."

"You have another girlfriend after…"

"Yes. So you just…shut up. You'll meet her when you start at Degrassi…"

"Oh freaking joy. I can't wait to start at Degrassi. I'm so happy! Will I get an awesome uniform?"

Sarcasm was apparently a trait we both inherited too…. I would say something back but I'm too worn out to deal with this. After the parent teacher with Simpson this morning, making up with Clare this afternoon and getting the depth of my punishment through text message at lunch, I'm dead on my feet.

After an hour of hearing my father fuss on the phone to anyone who would listen, including Vanessa… He came back upstairs.

"Eli, your punishment just changed. You have to take your sister home every day after school for a week starting today so hop to it. Eliza, Kiddo, guess you're stuck with us guys… Hope you know all the woman stuff you're supposed to know."

"Dad, geez, of course…. I mean if Eli doesn't want to change his punishment he can always stay here and I can walk home. I remember the way."

"Nope Kiddo… I'd feel safer with you getting a ride. There are weirdo's out here."

"Dad Eli drives a hearse with a casket in the back that is full of tools and car parts. He is the weirdo."

"Hey, I'm right here and I haven't gone deaf."

"Your point?"

"Eliza just get in the damn car, let Eli take you home and don't argue with me. I'm really in no mood little girl."

"Way to go dad…"

"Boy, don't get me started on you and your mess! Just do what you're told. Not a peep out of either of you… Got it? Go."

Our father was one scary looking guy sometimes and that doubled when he was angry. He's about six three, buff, covered in tattoos and piercings with a wicked shaved Mohawk. I guess we get our style from him, but who knows. Anyway, I would not want to be an object of this guy's anger with it being this strong.

I put Eliza's bags in Morty and we went home. I let her carry them into the house herself. Even though she struggled I laughed because she offended me by talking about Morty's casket.

"Thanks a lot for your help! I'm traumatized you know!"

"You're welcomed. You knew it would eventually come Eliza. You know how she is…"

"You wouldn't understand."

"No, my mom just left in the beginning. I mean sure maybe I am the lucky one. I'm used to being without a mom."

"Stop, you're getting all sappy. I just don't know. Never thought the dump day would come…"

"Yeah… Well. I know what will get your mind off all this."

"What?"

"Covering for me so that I can get my girlfriend over here…Maybe tell dad that she's here to help you put your room together."

"Lie harder…"

"She's here to deliver you some tampons."

"Too hard."

"She's here to let you borrow a Degrassi uniform so that you can start bright and early tomorrow morning."

"Heck no! I wanna ride this week out."
"Come on Eliza please? You know I don't beg and I never will again but I need to see Clare."

"Strung out much? Fine what is her number? If it's gonna be believable I'll have to call."