He had woke up to the ear-splitting sound of his alarm clock going off. The Sandman's spell was definitely wearing away just as soon as that sound had made its way into his dream. Lance turned over to his left side and his only opened eye met with the bright red light of the time across the clock. He growled and forced an arm out from under the sheets and slammed his hand over top of the clock to shut it off.
It gave Lance a sense of relief knowing that he wasn't alone in this massive centuries old house. At night, the place seemed to come alive. His grandfather Frank took Lance in as his own when his father passed and it was good thing that he did or else he would've been sent off to live in a foster home.
"Got to get moving," Lance mumbled groggily to himself, rolling over to his back, letting his lids drop heavy. Last night, he and his boys got into some of Frank's booze stash in the pantree. They were caught but as they held their breath, bracing themselves for the talk of their lives, Frank extended his tattooed arm forward and with a smile he said;
"How 'bout sharin' that with the old man?"
That old sailor was a sly bastard. Ever since Lance was a teenager, Frank was no stick in the mud when it came to letting the boy have a bit of booze. That man wasn't conservative, not crazy conservative that is, and the funny thing was, he was as patriotic as they come. There was a lot to be said about the old man.
Finally, after taking a few long minutes for himself to just simply fall back into a relaxed state all over again, Lance used all the strength he had at the moment to lift himself up and out of the hot sheets. His eyes were closed and his hands were weak, busy searching around his head, feeling for curls that he knew were out of place from his weird way of sleeping.
Lance slowly opened each eye to this one and only reality and a bolt of sunshine came right on by, burning the living hell out of each one. He moaned to himself and used the sole of his hands to rub away the soreness within his eyes.
"Damnit!" he cursed loud and used his memory to get himself out of bed while keeping each eye covered. Once his toes came into contact with the hard wooden floor below, he knew he was successful. Removing his hands, Lance did a full 360 around his bedroom, taking in everything from his antique dresser to that creepy wooden rocking horse in a far corner that has been in his family forever.
He was tired and that was obvious. The boy left his bedroom and wandered off down the hallway to the bathroom with weak limbs. Lance entered the bathroom and closed the door as quietly as he could without waking Frank, who usually enjoyed being the first one in and out of the shower.
Lance was here now anyway. With his back against the door, his eyes scanned these suddenly new surroundings. He shuffled over towards the twin-sink vanity, his hands laid face down atop of the grey granite surface and his head moved far up enough that he could see himself staring right back him. Dark circles weren't a normal thing for him in the morning but it was today. His body felt more used than ever before. The young adult mumbled complete jibberish into the mirror, eyes struggling to keep themselves on one thing. He leaned in closer and narrowed his eyes taking in his freckled pale body. He was standing in only a pair of boxers.
His flaring auburn curls were everywhere. Along his jawline, he could see the hairs coming right back after a week of shaving. The boy was becoming a hairy mess. Traveling his hazel eyes down his own body, Lance noticed freckle after freckle and then saw that scar. It was only an inch long right across his left side. He stared at it in the mirror for longer than he expected, feeling his chest tighten. He wanted to know where the scar had come from.
Shortly after examining it, Lance turned to face the claw tub and grabbed the waistband of his boxers. He let out a hot sigh after pulling them down, slipping each leg out and he stood there fully naked. He turned on the water, dipped a hand underneath the pouring faucet and started the shower head. When stepping into the tub and pulling the curtain closed, Lance began to think about his mother as the water hit his body like plush bullets. What she had done to him, what she done to their lives was the most awful thing a mother could ever do to her child. His auburn curls were soaked and his skin was warm to the touch. Lance held his face up towards the shower head and closed his eyes tight when the water came crashing down on him.
There was no telling if these were tears or water droplets falling anymore. He had nobody left but his grandfather and knowing that his mother was in the nuthouse outside of town, it destroyed him but he always made it point to go visit her whenever he had the time. Those visiting hours were almost up and he had to be quick with his morning routine.
After his fifteen minutes spent in the bathroom, Lance left the room and came crashing into Frank. "Ow, damn kid, be careful," Frank cried out, and brushed his grey t-shirt off, looking at him. Lance looked back but the gaze was instantly broken and the lanky teen wiggled right on by Frank, not saying a word.
Frank knew how Lance worked. He could tell when he was upset and he knew that now because today he was going to the institution to see that devil mother of his. Frank was Lance's father's father and the kid had no right to say anything bad to his grandfather when he would nit-pick at his mother. Lance knew that his mother was disturbed and mentally unstable, but she wasn't always like that. She was once the most loving mother in the world; she'd do anything for her family. Lance hated to admit it, but he almost missed the way she would spoil him. He missed her and it was the truth that he'd rather keep deep in the back of his mind.
Lance was in his bedroom, sitting at his desk, staring at the one picture he still had of his father. Nothing but his few cologne bottles and family photos occupied this desk. He held the picture tightly in his hand and felt his throat tighten. Past memories were always painful when the one you loved was now gone. Setting the photo back down, Lance looked over his shoulder at the alarm clock on his nightstand. He had to get his ass moving.
Leaving the house, Lance saw his truck parked against the curb. Frank was the owner of the house so he had the right to park in the drive way. He rolled up the sleeves of his grey hoodie and shook his head. It was the middle of summer and he was still wearing that old hoodie of his. He knew by the time the day ends, he was going to be covered in sweat. Lance met the rusted vehicle and dropped a hand onto the hood. The dry padding of his palm collected tons off dirt and grime as he made his way over to the drivers side.
He opened the door and as it opened, it cried out loud when the rusted hinges grinded against each other. Lance didn't care about the rust, its what he liked about his truck. Hopping up into the filthy seat, Lance reached for the door, closed it and put both of his hands on top of the sun-bleached leather steering wheel.
He loved the feel of the wheel and smiled when it squeeked underneath his fingers. This truck brought back a lot of memories that he didn't mind bringing up. His father had taught him about cars, especially trucks. That man showed him the basics of a vehicle, how to work it and eventually how to drive it. The familiar smell inside the truck made Lance think of him. The stale scent of leftover cigarettes that his buddies would leave all over the floor reminded him of how much his father used to smoke. Lance thanked his dumbass friends for that.
Lance shifted in his seat, moving his hips forward to retrieve the keys that were in his back pocket. Once they were in his hand, he put it into the ignition and within seconds, the truck was growling. A smile found its way on his chapped lips and soon he was gone.
The institute was located on the outskirts of town, which was only a few miles away from where he lived. Lance and his grandfather lived in the dead end of this small town and the only neighbors they had were weirdos and druggies. Stopping at the end of the block, Lance looked right then left, and turned on the radio, pushing his foot back on the gas. For being a loser kid and not caring about much, Lance was a careful driver.
His ears suddenly picked up on the band that played. He cracked a smile and began bobbing his head to the beat. "We're just two lost souls swimmin' in a fish bowl," he found himself singing along to his favorite line in one of his favorite songs, hanging his left arm out the window and hanging on to the wheel with his free hand, tapping his thumb. He continued to head forward, watching life pass him by from the window. Not a whole lot went on in this little town. Children played outside their house, some at the park with their parents, people went boating on the river, licked on ice cream down on main street, but that's all that really went on here. Bars, pizza, boating and ice cream.
Pink Floyd faded away as the dj's voice chimmed back in. The heat was becoming almost unbearable and he wasn't even where he needed to be yet. Another stop sign and he stopped, watching an unfamiliar couple bicker from the porch of their house to his right.
Life was definitely hard and annoying at times. He dragged his hazel eyes from the loud couple and went on. The next song that echoed inside the truck had been "Brown Sugar" by the Rolling Stones, another one of his favorite bands. Damn did Mick Jagger have a very distinctive voice. That voice he could listen to all day.
As the day had faded into a hot mid afternoon, Lance let a sigh pass his lips when he pulled into the parking lot of the building. With both hands on the wheel, tight, he scanned the entire lot, searching for a parking spot today and lucky for him, he found one without cussing like a fucking mad man, pounding on the steering wheel.
Carefully, he pulled in between two vehicles, both scratched and beat to shit, that even if Lance had accidently hit one of them, it wouldn't make any difference. He straightened out the wheels the best he could and cut the engine.
He pulled the key out with a rough tug and hit the dashboard before opening the door. It opened with another familiar creak and he slammed it shut. He didn't need to lock, he never locked those damn doors for some reason he didn't understand. Once the overused soles of his converse hit the cement, Lance used a hand as a visor, staring in the direction of the building. It looked more like a very large apartment building than what it really was.
Lance sighed again and this time hard. He pulled down his sleeves and began to walk forward. His chest was pounding painfully and his palms were sweaty. He had to clear his mind though when he saw her. Lance didn't want to put any more pressure on his mother.
When his hand met the glass of the door, he swallowed loud and entered carefully.