Authors: Breigh Forstner
Tags: #Romance, #young adult, #music, #fiction
Straight from the
A Novel by Breigh
Straight from the Heart (Book 1)
By Breigh Forstner
Copyright 2014 Breigh Forstner
I could feel the leather of the guitar case
glued to my palm. Hot and sweaty against my skin, I held onto it
for dear life. My guitar was my gateway to a new universe. I could
get lost, and no one would care to find me.
That universe was about to be taken from
“Bryn Schaefler, did you not hear anything
your father told you?” My mother yelled as she tried to wrestle the
guitar away from me with a sharp tug.
“Yeah I heard every word.” I mumbled. “You
want me to throw this guitar away.”
Mother let her freshly manicured fingers
slip slightly, a devious smile forming from her dark red coated
lips. “You are throwing your life away with this piece of garbage
young lady. Breaking up with Ethan, buying this ‘instrument,’
getting a job? That is not what Schaefler’s do. Do you understand
me?” She said "instrument" like it was a piece of scum in the road.
Little did she know I had saved up a whole couple of months’ worth
of money working at the fast food restaurant in town to afford a
nice acoustic. An Alvarez Dreadnought. It took over five paychecks
until I finally took the wad of cash into the local Guitar Center.
I remember that day as the best day ever.
“Bryn, give your mother an answer.” My dad
scolded me, standing in the front door, arms crossed like a
security guard. He knew I would leave. Brayden, my older brother,
left before me. I’m sure he anticipated it all of these months
leading up to my high school graduation. I frowned at him in
confusion. Were they really trying to take the one thing that meant
everything to me away?
“No. You’ll never take my guitar from me.” I
clung to my guitar as if my life depended on that instrument
without slipping and leaving a dent in my parent’s wood floor. I’d
be paying hell for something so stupid.
“Don’t you fight me on this! Do I need to
call the cops like we threatened with Bray…?”
“Brayden is gone for a damn good reason," I
spat back "He can’t stand to see you anymore.” Tucking strands of
black hair behind my ear, I anticipated the worst. The belt, a hand
to the face, or the butter knife in the kitchen only the live-in
chef used for our dinners. I watched their faces go from furious to
betrayal. No one ever mentioned Brayden, and how he left at
Christmas time because he wanted to go overseas and explore the
music scene. I guess it runs in the family.
My mother brought a thin hand up to my face
and slapped me with every fiber of energy she had. I felt the sharp
sting on my cheek, stepping back in shock. She never used to slap
us. Not until she took up drinking every night when my dad worked
longer hours. It became obvious. She only kept us around because it
made her who she thought she was: A trophy wife, an amazing stay at
home mom who loves her kids. She never loved us. It was never about
what we wanted to pursue, but what made the Schaefler name more
credible in the land of the rich and powerful.
As my fingers grazed the hot flesh on my
face, I felt my blood boiling inside my body.
This is it,
I have to go.
Running around my mother, I
grabbed the suitcase that held at least a week’s worth of clothes.
I needed to do this
. If my parents were going to continue to
run my life, degrading me, hand picking my boyfriends, telling me
where to go to school, I couldn’t stay in this cage.
Bryn…you can do this
“And where do you think you’re going with
that?” My dad rested a hand on my shoulder, trying to stop me from
walking any further out the door.
“Since when did you ever care?” I asked in
return, staring my dad dead in the eye, and then repaying my
mother’s glare. Her eyes narrowed and I thought for a minute she
was closing them so she didn’t see me leave. Taking a deep breath,
I said my final words to them. “Every day of my life, you have told
me what I can and cannot do, who I can be friends with, who I can
date. Hell, you signed me up for the most prestigious colleges in
the United States without me knowing! I am DONE being a puppet and
a little show girl you can parade around saying ‘look at my
sophisticated daughter,’ that is a bunch of bull-shit.” I held my
stance as I breathed in the silence. It was nice, quaint even. But
it was not enough. I shoved my dad aside as he remained beside my
mother, not moving an inch to convince me to stay. That sealed the
deal. It took every bit of courage in me to touch the squeaky clean
door knob and step out the door.
“Bryn Michelle Schaefler you come back into
this house,” Mothers voice sounded strained now, full of heartache.
Maybe after 18 years of breathing I finally got to this cold
“Sometimes goodbye's a second chance.” I
answered, “This is my second chance.” Slamming the door, I never
looked back or even peeked past my shoulder at the prison behind
me. I had no idea where I was going, or if I had any money in
my pockets, but I was ready for an adventure.
That was it.
The walk to downtown was about five and a
half miles. My feet were sore. Between dragging a 10 pound suitcase
in my right hand, and guitar case in the left, my arms were ready
to fall off. My mind was processing a million thoughts at a time,
‘Where do I even stay?’
‘How am I supposed to
survive?’ among them.
I knew my parents weren’t going to come
after me. Hell, Brayden made a clean sweep, why couldn’t I? I
thought about calling him and asking for some big brother advice,
but he had never called since leaving, so maybe he hated me.
Stopping at the corner of Main St. and the
dirt road that led to the riverbank, I sat plopped down on the
bench a few feet away.
“Finally,” I mumbled, , shifting around
until I felt comfortable. I looked straight down Main St.,
contemplating where I should stop for food and a place to stay. I
remembered there were some lofts above one of the restaurants close
by, but with my credit card, which I’m sure mother deactivated by
now. I had to figure something out quick.
I despised this feeling. Like I let my
parents down for doing something I loved: playing music. I felt
like I always disappointed them. Whenever I tried out for a sport
in high school and I only made freshman or J.V team, my mother
would demand that I go back and talk to the coach until I got
varsity status. Each time I got any grade lower than a B my dad
would take away my money in my saving account and car for a week.
They beat me down not with feet or hands, but with their words:
fat, ugly, pale, dumb, whatever degrading word there was, it was
used against me.
I gripped the railing on the bench tighter,
reliving the painful memories of nearly getting beaten by a belt
because I talked back. NOT even talking back; when I spoke “No”
that’s when all holy Hell would break loose and I wished I was
buried six feet under.
After breaking up with Ethan I realized I
was better than my parents' words. I was going for what I wanted in
life, my own way, and I loved it. I wanted to make mistakes, get
into trouble, and try things I never imagined I would.
Was I really that sheltered?
Catching my breath, I got back up and made
my way towards Lozanos, the Italian restaurant a block down the
street. Maybe Louisa would have a suggestion on where I could
stay. I reached the two story brick building and stepped foot
inside. Sandwiched in between the concert hall and a record store,
Lozano’s was always my favorite place to eat whenever Ethan and I
went out. Besides Ethan, I went with my friends Bethany and Gina,
but told my parents I was with Mr. Preppy pants. God I wished they
were here right now. They had decided to take the summer and drive
to California because they wanted to get into modeling.
I still got jealous, wishing I would’ve
taken the chance to get out of town when I had it. But I hadn't,
and now I was stuck.
“Hey it's my Bryn!” Louisa Lozano called in
her thick Italian accent as she greeted me at the door. I gave her
a squeeze and enjoyed the aroma of fresh cut pepperoni and dough.
“How are you my sweet girl?”
I gestured to my bags. “Well I was kind of
hoping I could stay for a bite to eat and to talk.”
Louisa immediately picked up my bags and set
them behind the counter where they would stay safe, since it was
only her and her husband working, along with their son Alberto.
“Look no further, hunny 'Berto, cook Miss
Bryn a large pepperoni pizza with extra pepps!” Alberto Jr.
acknowledged her with a nod, waving at me with a bright smile, his
olive toned skin and dark brown hair were dripping with sweat as he
worked back in the kitchen. I smiled back and waved as Louisa
gestured towards an empty booth. “So tell me what happened this
“I left for good.” I told her. “They didn’t
like that I wanted to pursue music instead of becoming a ‘trophy
wife’ like my mother. Mom wanted to rip my guitar from me and burn
it in the fireplace. I couldn’t do it Lou.” She could tell I was
getting emotional, wrapping her arms around me as tears started
“Ohh, sweet Bryn, I give you credit for
dealing with them for as long as you did. But your 18 hunny,
legally you can do whatever you wish. You want play music, play!
You want be trophy wife, be trophy wife! It’s your life and you
know you always have the support of Alberto Sr. and I.” Louisa said
gently, stroking my hair.
I immediately felt better. Louisa was like
the mother that I never had. I loved how she always called me sweet
Bryn. She had the most positive attitude out of anyone I’d ever
known. She and Alberto Sr. built Lozanos from the ground up, using
all of their savings from Italy, and it had flourished into one of
the best Italian restaurants in the area.