I don’t know who I am…
*sigh* No I don’t mean like that. My name is Nessie Lochlan and I am the only daughter of Arin and Nellie Lochlan. Our family has lived in Dragon Valley for as long as the town’s history has been recorded. My parents are traveling philanthropists. We aren’t incredibly wealthy, but my father makes enough income off of a few rental properties to fund their projects. When I was young my parents took me everywhere with them. We were never home for more than a few days at a time. That is not the life for me.
As soon as I was old enough, I asked them to let me stay home. My father was apprehensive about it, but my mother convinced him to let me try it.
“Honey, I think she can handle herself just fine. If this is what she wants we can at least give it a try.”
My parents agreed that as long as I kept my grades up and didn’t get into any trouble, I would be allowed to stay home from then on.
They knew I wouldn’t get into trouble, I had never been a troublemaker.
I liked familiar, I liked home.
Besides, I wasn’t completely alone. My parents asked some family friends to look after me, Robert and Helen Grey. They were more than happy to do it.
Robert is a doctor and Helen is a lawyer so they never had much time to spend with me, instead they appointed their son Hugh the chore of checking up on me. He didn’t seem to mind much, since I am practically his little sister.
Still, I imagine it was annoying having to take time out of his life to come over every couple days.
I guess the really hard thing is that people started to talk about me once my parents began leaving me at home. I didn’t go out much, and if I did go out it was only to the library or the observatory.
I have always loved science and nature, so I occupied my time with things I enjoy.
The busy-bodies in town must have seen some sort of mission in my research, like I was trying to find something. Okay, I may have made a passing comment about seeing something in the lake behind my parent’s house.
Bradan:”You have better chance of finding a unicorn in your living room than finding anything in that dinky lake. You might want to get out more.”
Pretty soon I was the butt of a running joke and the people in town even gave this fictional monster a name, the Lochness Monster.
This is why I don’t talk to people.
I was alone in a house on the farthest reach of town and my imagination got the best of me, next thing I know my imagination has a name and my entire existence is defined by it.
At least I had my best friend, Enya. We are a lot different but we still have a lot of fun together.
She would listen all about the latest books I had been reading
And I would listen to her boy problems and whatever drama was unfolding in her life. Sometimes I did wish I could be like her and be liked by everyone, and sometimes I wondered why she was my friend when she seemed to have so many interesting friends.
She told me that I was her true friend, and that she liked me because I wasn’t all about drama and she could just be herself. I never did understand that though, not being yourself around someone else. But then I guess just being myself did sort of cause all those rumors about me.
My parents would stop back home for a few days, sometimes a week, but they were always on the go. They made sure I was alright and then they were off again.
I shouldn’t be angry because I am the one who asked to be left at home, but I can’t help but wonder how they could just leave their only daughter to raise herself. I get that they had big things to do, but the fact that I was somehow not as big as those things really hurt. Sometimes I needed my mother, like when prom rolled around and no one had asked me.
Enya had a date, and she did invite me to go along but I didn’t want to be a third wheel. Everyone already thought I was awkward enough.
I couldn’t call my parents very easily since they were sometimes in countries that didn’t get good phone service, I just had to wait for them to call me.
I used to get so excited to hear my father’s voice on the other line, but as I got older I felt more detached.
They just chalked it up to me being a moody teen, but it didn’t feel like a “mood” to me. I hated the reminders that whatever they were doing was more important than me, I hated that they didn’t care to take the time to know the real me, I started wishing they wouldn’t call.
But still they called, and I guess it was a mild relief when they did. How could I hate them and need them so much at the same time?
I eventually hardened to the fact that they were going to do what they wanted, and that I should do the same. They are still my parents and have shown me nothing but love, aside from a little neglect.
“Yes! It’s turning into something!”
That confetti is a pain in the ass to clean up.
But I was in pretty good hands. The Greys would call every day, and every couple days they would send Hugh over to check up on me. We had a ritual of playing rock, paper, scissors.
“Stop reading my mind.”
“Stop being so predictable.”
He loved reading too, so we would talk about books most of the time.
The Greys would also occasionally invite me over for dinner.
As the end of high school neared Enya got pretty serious with her boyfriend, Dermot. She would still try and hang out with me but most weekends she spent with him. That familiar anger crept into my mind every time she was too busy to see me. I was jealous, angry, and hurt.
I let her know all that one night.
“You are never around for me anymore, you are always with Dermot! I don’t even know you anymore!”
“NO, I know how it goes. Everyone leaves me once something better comes along. I guess I thought you were different.”
“It…it’s not like that”
She didn’t talk to me for a while after that.
I became more of a hermit than usual, not even answering the door when Hugh came by.
A couple times Helen came over to talk. That really did wonders having a woman to talk to, a woman who knew me. Whenever I talked to my mother her head was so full of what was going on in her life, there wasn’t any room for my concerns or problems, not to mention the fact that my mother hardly knew my personality.
Helen eased my fears about Enya and told me that it is a natural part of life and that I wasn’t wrong for being hurt and angry, but that I should apologize for taking it out on her.
I knew she was right, so I called Enya over.
“I was a total jerk and I was wrong, I was just afraid of losing my best friend”
“No matter what, you will never lose me. Best Friends Forever, remember?”
After that, things got better. Though I’d be lying if I said I was always happy to see Dermot. It isn’t the same when there is a boy hanging around.
Then…Hugh left for college. I shouldn’t have really cared but he was my second closest friend even if he didn’t see me that way.
I didn’t think he would leave for college since he wasn’t exactly fresh out of school. He had been hanging around in town doing odd jobs at least since I started staying home by myself.
He is studying Marine Biology, he has always loved the ocean. His parent’s house is on the shoreline and he would often go there to fish or swim.
Since he has been gone, me and Enya pretty much got back to normal. And soon it was time for us to graduate.
And that is where I am now. Dermot proposed at the graduation after party, and I am truly happy for her. They will go to University together, she will get her degree, get married and move on with life. She has it all tied up.
I’m happy that she is happy, but everything perfect in her life just emphasizes to me that I have no direction.
My parents came home for my graduation and they have invited me to go with them on their next trip since I haven’t been for years. I haven’t decided if I will go or not, it would be nice to spend some time with them but Im apprehensive about going somewhere totally new.
I like to research and discover new things…from my workroom or back porch. Im not a brave adventurer and if I go with them I will just sit at base camp reading books. I guess I am pretty selfish for not wanting to help them, but my heart is not in it.
Enya, Hugh, my parents, Robert and Helen..all of them have a mission, a goal, a purpose. What is my purpose? For all I know, I will have better luck finding the Lochness Monster than finding Nessie.