"sorry?" said Albert, surprised at what Nicole had said.
Her mother? Did he hear it right? Is her mother going back to her old habits? He thought Debra was already done with that lifestyle of her's and moved on to better herself.
if not for her, then for her family, at least. he remembered her acting weird, many times before. She was an alcoholic. She creeped him out, most of the time.
Some days she would seem normal until she does something weird, straight out of the blue, and embarrasses Her daughter.
Nicole is the only child that's left to care for her mother after her father had left them because of her mother's addiction. her brother wasn’t a family guy either.
After he graduated high school he went to college and he only writes back once every three or four months. Somehow, Nicole saw him as the loner type.
He didn't have many friends, as far as she knew. He left for college when she was about ten, so she never really got the chance to bond with him, but her parents did. they fought with him a lot.
they’d always go on and on about his friends saying "they're not good people," or "they only want to drag you down with them," etc.
She never really understood what it was all about but the older she grew, the more she understood what they were bickering about. Maybe that's why he always hated being together with his family.
Nobody would want to stick around with a family that just fights.
She would be upstairs when those fights happen, playing with her dolls to distract herself, or cover her ears with the pillows so she wouldn’t hear anything.
Ever since then she's hated fighting. She hated all kinds of violence.
That's why being optimistic And a happy person takes a huge part of her life, not just as a human being but as a lifestyle in general.
Even when bad stuff happens to her, Albert and Alex would always see a wide smile drawn on her face and her eyes would sparkle With hope.
It's all her once again! And I'm The one who has to take in all of the shit she'd throw at me! I just can't keep up with her like this!
" said Nicole as she stood up with her hands still on the table, speaking loudly in anger. She sat down and let out a big sigh, relieved for releasing so much anger.
She was concerned that her mother might actually have to go to rehab, again. She was tearing up and was about to emotionally collapse. Albert has never seen such broken side of her.
Not even once.
"Ok, ok! Calm down! Take a deep breath. Slow and steady, ok? Now tell me what happened from top to bottom, alright? I'm here for you," said Albert as he waved his hands in a calming gesture.
He sat down with her and held her shaking hands, trying his best attempt to comfort her shattered self as she was sobbing. negativity was drained all of her energy.
He put on a small smile on his face to make her feel safe and have her open up to him.
"Thanks..." said Nicole, trying her best to pull out a smile of her own on her virtually distressed face.
She kept sobbing and wiped out a falling tear that went down her right cheek like a waterfall. Albert felt horrible for seeing her like this. He somewhat felt responsible.
He should've been there. He should've tried to call her instead of calling Alex. Not that it was a wrong idea, but he should've tried to at least call her more than once.
they both turned their heads to the kitchen’s door as they heard someone walking from the hall.
"Hey. Woah! What happened to you?" said Alex, standing at the doorstep of the kitchen, shocked for seeing Nicole like this.
His eyes were wide with worry, and his eyebrows were lowered in confusion.
He didn't want to approach her as Albert was already there for her and she might feel uncomfortable if he focused all of his attention on her, let alone Albert's.
Albert was closer to her anyway, so Alex's attention wasn't needed as much. He's not very good at giving an advice or any type of comforting words for that matter.
He was good at helping out, though. If you needed him for something, he's there for you.
But if you needed him because you're emotionally distressed or feeling down, he's not the person to go to. he just gets uncomfortable in these situations.
"Yeah, I'll be fine, Alex. Don't worry about me," said Nicole. Her voice sounded like it had caved in on itself. She's not used to being under the spotlight.
although She likes to shine through her actions. she hates to intentionally be the center of attention.
"you don't look fine. Tell us what happened," said Alex in a rushing tone as he went to sit down with them. He really was bad when it came to someone having an emotional wreck.
Maybe he will learn a thing or two from Albert and see how he approached people that were under pressure.
He noticed a glass of water was laying around on the table, so he guessed that she came not too long ago. If only he had stayed awake, he would've caught up with them.
He also happened to notice that Albert was holding Nicole's hands. Slight bit of Jealousy crept into him, as he wasn't the first to try and give her the comfort she needed.
Maybe it was for the best. If he saw her at the doorstep, he would've said something really awkward. That would've made things even worse for both of them.
"ok, what I miss?" said Alex, trying to make sense out of this whole scenario of Nicole looking like she's been attacked by a bear and Albert whose eyes were filled with heartache.
Did he really miss that much? How long has she been in here? It's been almost an hour and a half since he had first woken up, so she can't have been around longer than that.
"I don't wish to talk about it right now. Let's just forget about it.
I barely slept for two hours and I'm really exhausted," said Nicole in a pleading tone as she displayed tiredness and zero will to discuss anything.
"we understand. Don't worry about it. You can go sleep on the couch if you want. There are blankets. The house is yours," said Albert, pointing to the hall.
She had every right to let go of everything right and take some time off. Albert did notice bags under her eyes, so he guessed that she indeed never got much sleep.
He can't imagine what her mother could've done to make things come to this extent. No wonder her father had left them; her mother seemed like she was as mad as a hatter.
Although he never thought of her for being a woman that would do such things. looks could be really deceiving.
"Ok, I'm gonna go now. You guys pretend I'm not even here. I don't want to feel guilty for dragging you into---"
"nonsense! just don't worry about it, Ok? You go get some rest now," Albert cut her off. She had a relieved look on her face for having such loving and caring friends.
She nodded and went straight to the hall. She threw herself on the couch, grabbed the blanket and covered her entire self with it.
She probably didn't wish to see any light going into her eyes, so she could sleep more easily. Albert stumbled quietly to the hall, closing the curtains so she could sleep a little better.
he quietly closed the glass doors as he headed out. The glass was stained with flowers with nice dark orange color, which gave the hall a very cozy feel to it.
he was greeted by a really confused and lost Alex.
"what the hell just happened, man? are you gonna fill me in or what?" said Alex, raising his hands up in the air, in a curious gesture.
He seemed frustrated at the fact that he was the last person to know about this.
"now I don't know much about this either, but I know one thing for sure," said Albert as he waved his pointer finger like he had discovered something.
"which is?" said Alex with anticipation.
"It's her mother," said Albert.
“her mother?” Alex replied in confusion.
“yes. now I can’t tell if it was the alcohol or something else,” said Albert in conclusion.
“waoh! alcohol?” said Alex, as he seemed even more surprised by the minute.
“you don’t remember? her mother was an alcoholic and she had to go to rehab and father left because of her?” Albert reminded his friend about Nicole’s life in short words.
“oh yeah, I almost forgot,” Alex replied. “so what do you make of all this?” he asked.
“i think we may have a problem here,”