I peeked through the back door window and saw Claire sitting at the kitchen table still wearing her dress and apron from work. She held a cup of coffee and cigarette in one hand while going through mail with the other. I tossed my purse and book bag to the side of the porch and sat down on the grass hoping to wait her out. The last thing I wanted today was a conversation with my mother.
She got up fifteen minutes later, but it was only to refill her cup. I sighed and slung my bags over my shoulder, lifting myself off the grass.
“You’re home,” Claire said as I rushed through the door past her. “Hey, get back here, Lilah. What’s wrong with you?”
“Nothing,” I said, avoiding her overly made-up eyes.
“Well you look like crap. Have you been crying?” She pursed her lips and blew the steam rising from her cup, waiting for me to answer.
"No, I'm just tired."
She pulled out a chair from the table and patted her hand on the seat. This was her "mother-who-cares" act, but I wasn't buying it. Did she really expect me to sit and talk with her about my life over piles of old mail and the breakfast dishes she'd left for me to clean up? I shifted my bags to my other shoulder and stood with my arms folded on my chest.
"Fine." She shoved the chair back under the table. "I'm not gonna beg you to talk to me."