I guess you could say moving had never been one of my top priorities, yet in mid-September 2011 I found myself on a plane with my favourite clothes and possessions safely tucked away in the luggage boot, moving away from sunny Phoenix to a shitty little town called, of all things, Forks. I had a feeling my Chinese heritage would be poked fun of there, after all, shouldn't I move to Chopsticks instead? Haha.
Despite all, it was probably a wise choice on my part to move. I say choice, but thinking back I don't see how I could do otherwise. My "mother", Yao, had a new (Russian) boyfriend, whom approached me one day very casually and said that if I did not leave him and Yao alone "there will be dire consequences". Naturally, I was soon on the phone with my father – a grumpy Briton who goes by the name of Arthur, by the way – and asked if I could move there. Since his and Yao's divorce seven years ago I haven't seen him other than on my birthdays, and two Christmases when I was younger, so needless to say we weren't really tight. My strongest memories of him include him scolding me for playing with crackers, and him managing to burn a set of scones despite having a timer – which he used. I was sure living there would be great.
Of course I did some research before I decided to move there and thus found out that my new school had a mere student body of 350. My old school had close to 2000, and even there I had no friends; my chances of finding people I like in Forks were rather small, I must admit. But friends were never my main goal. I just hoped there was wireless internet.
Arthur was waiting at me outside of the airport, leaning against his black car, looking fairly impressive in his suit. I had expected to see him in uniform, as he is the chief police of Forks, but perhaps that would attract too much attention. I dunno.
When he saw me he smiled, which, if I remember correctly, was rare, and he approached me proudly, looking oddly fatherly. On the pictures I had of him he always looked a bit sore, or just displeased.
"Michael, it's good to see you again lad", Arthur said and shook my hand, giving my arm a friendly pat. Michael is sort of my name, and sort of not. Yao and Arthur apparently fought a lot about what I should be named when they adopted me; Yao claiming that since I was from China, I should have a Chinese name, while Arthur claimed that since I was from China I would have an English name so I would be a little of both. Thus my ID reads "Michael Jia-Long Wang Kirkland". Try to say that five times fast.
"Good to see you as well", I replied to him casually, bowing my head. Being called Michael was a bit odd, since I had only gone by Jia-Long for seven years.
After that very unemotional and brief greeting he helped put my stuff in the car, and he drove us away from the airport towards the small town of Forks. I had lived there, apparently, for the first years of my life but I could't remember a thing, so nostalgia was not something I felt when we drove past a library, a cinema and a little playground where apparently I loved to play when I was younger. It's funny that Arthur would tell me that, because on all photographs I've seen of myself as a child I never smiled. Once.
All in all I was not overly impressed when I saw Forks – perhaps the cloudy gray sky robbed it of its true beauty; but I doubt that. I was slightly impressed by Arthur's house though, after having passed endless of dull and cheap looking villas, his actually looked nice. It was a bit bigger, and the garden seemed well taken care of, just like the inside. Simply put it was a well-taken care of home, with nice decoration, a classic style and a very robust feel. It was also the complete opposite of Yao's home, which was filled with Chinese art and items, as if trying to overcompensate for something. I don't know why though, for Yao still had a horrible accent so you couldn't mistake his nationality. But whatever.
My room was very nice, luckily, and there was a brand new laptop waiting on the desk. The room looked a bit girly with purple curtains, but it was cleaned nicely like the rest of the house, and had a lot of storage room. All of a sudden I felt less regretful about the move.
After I had installed myself in the room Arthur said he had one more surprise to me, and lead me to the garage. In there waited a car, to which he gave me the keys. It was nothing too fancy, just a dark blue Renault – second hand – but since I hadn't had my own car at Yao's I was very grateful.
I turned out to be even more lucky as Arthur wasn't really that annoying, or as strict as I remembered him. He didn't mind that I offered to make us dinner instead, and he even told me how happy he was that I wanted to stay with him. When he asked me why the change I had to lie though.
"Missed having a dad", I said and his smile made me wish that it had been the truth. Oh well.
When dinner was over he did the dishes and I went up to go online and install my new laptop, which thankfully worked great. I only had two emails in my inbox since the morning, which was disappointing, since one was from "BigDicks dot Com" titled "How to enlarge your penis" (and I had no idea how they got my email) and the other a p.m. from one of the forums I was an active member of, telling me "hey i think your cute wanna meet? :)". I would never date someone who doesn't know the difference between "your" and "you're".
Hours of surfing later Arthur knocked on my door and told me that yes, he knew I was 17, but since I had school tomorrow I really should go to bed. I was kind of tired anyway, so I brushed my teeth and made myself ready for bed, then surfed till 2 in the morning, before eventually turning the computer off and going to bed.
As I was lying in my bed, thinking about my latest livejournal post where I whined about the small school I would be attending, I wished that I was religious so that I could pray to the faux-god unknowingly, since apparently that would soothe your worries. I would have prayed for good classmates.
Turns out, I didn't need to pray. I still met him, the next day, after all.