His head whirled with the responsibility for his sister, she wanted to stay in Newcrest to finish school, and despite Eliza’s offer of assistance, he was Charlotte’s guardian. An undecided future, Patrick looked to girlfriend Gemma, for comfort, unconvinced of anything beyond the physical attraction. Straddling him, Gemma massaged his templed, moving her hand to cup his face added soft kisses; despite the distracted thought process, he squeezed her thighs in appreciation. Gemma squealed and grabbed hold of him as he thrust upwards, throwing her back into the water.
Gemma fished her bikini, a towel covering her nudity; it seemed Patrick had lost himself in her embrace, she had giggled at the sensations added by the water, but post fun, Patrick seemed distant. She cleared her throat, wondering if she could stay over; he shrugged, knowing Gemma wanted an answer were they together, a couple. He enjoyed the intimacy; it beat satisfying himself alone; calling her, Patrick had considered her as a temporary fix. Gritting her teeth, Gemma stormed slamming the front door as she entered; Patrick watched his hand move beneath the surface of the water, the misery rising in him. Since losing his mother, Patrick wanted comfort; Gemma was convenient; he knew it was wrong to use her that way; he thought she understood, making no promises for a future together. Their relationship was casual sex or watching movies; Patrick fooled himself, believing she was happy with the situation; Emilie liked her, warning him to treat her with respect. The door slammed hard; he could tell she was crying; they shared an uncomfortable stare as the taxi arrived. Returning his gaze to the water, he wondered if he should message her later, apologise, except he worried it would give the wrong impression, it was another thing in his life, finished.
Forced responsibility came with its issues, Charlotte, a few years younger, huffed whenever he asked her to help with the house. The main house stood mournful and empty, Patrick took residence, although he felt uneasy taking the main bedroom, instead made himself comfortable on the sofa, and woken with dog slobber from an excitable Sparky as the sun rose. Patrick needed space; Charlotte gave him a confused stare, her mouth filled with Pancakes; she chewed slow, deliberate; they had two buildings with ample room; what extra did he need?
He had met with Juliana for a drink; when he mentioned the struggle, dealing with Emilie’s death, accepting his new role as guardian, Juliana suggested a few days break. It would be at the weekend; Patrick knew Charlotte could spend her time with Eliza, their sister recommended Karaoke and shopping. The alternative would be to ask Caleb to stay with her; this idea made him uncomfortable, but he chose to respect his sister would make poor choices. Charlotte continued to glare; her mouth seemed dry, making it difficult to swallow the food; eyes stung, he would abandon her, the dog made a poor substitute. She apologised, taking his care and kindness for granted; the teasing of the fuzzy tufts of hair covered his top lip and chin, backtracking her previous comments to suggest his beard would look impressive. Granite Falls was close; if Charlotte needed him, Patrick promised he would be home besides camping might disagree with him, and he’ll long for the comforts of home. Pushing the plate harder than intended, Charlotte bit back tears; Patrick shifted his chair as it landed in his lap. There had been name-calling, dramatic tears in the past; Charlotte stood composing herself; rather than succumbing to his presumption, she headed for school, leaving him to clean the mess.