That's the biggest downside of living in a communal environment. Aside from a glaring lack of privacy (we have lots of space, we just have lots of people too), living in close quarters with so many passionate people with our hearts all strung out on a line is that our fighting styles are vastly different. Vastly. And everything seems to raise the stakes until they stab us through, stuck deep into those bleeding hearts for no reason other than to attempt to prove a point, usually at someone else's expense.
Caleb tends to organize us into the little classes he has made up inside his head, with rich people like himself, Batman and Ben at the proverbial top and normal people like Schuyler, Sam and Christian, Dalton and Duncan in the middle and then the gutter rats at the bottom seem to be me and Lochlan, always called out for whatever decision we make as clearly not informed/educated/wealthy enough to understand whatever gravity we find ourselves in. Then there are those he just doesn't like, marginalized in a way only Caleb can pull off. That's August, in a class by himself, clearly, who never did a thing wrong in his life save for touching me (which isn't as big a deal as you might think and for which he is not to be blamed) and apparently that's the biggest sin going.
No one gives PJ any flack for the same thing but whatever, Caleb. I get who you think the threat is and who isn't.
Me, if I decide I'm going to take you up on your fight it will be the hill I die on, even if it's stupid and pointless. I don't get mad. I get frustrated. I cry. I'll withdraw, sure, but the minute I turn around and decide I'm going in (hold my beer), you'd better realize what you're up against and I think Caleb did this morning as I lit him up once again like an unwelcome hangover sunrise and told him if he EVER said a negative word or even thought a negative thought about someone I care about ever again that we would take our stuff and go and he could live here alone in his perfect existence and we would go back to a patchwork of houses and whatever or maybe (gasp) buy a bigger house somewhere else, maybe back East, and fuck his stupid need to try and prop himself up by tearing the others down and fuck his stupid expensive espresso and fuck fighting for the stupidest reasons.
The rage comes out of somewhere deep, maybe the deep unheated end of the Bridget pool and you don't want to be on the receiving side of it ever, no you don't.
Everyone looked vaguely scared by the time breakfast was over and I had to leave, taking my toast and tea out to the pool and then ignoring it in favor of a swim (the pool is heated, don't worry I won't catch pneumonia since I just had it. FML) because I couldn't even switch gears back and I couldn't stop shaking so I thought a break would bring me back around.
I'm not allowed to swim alone, however and so Lochlan followed me out, across the lawn with his bowl of cereal held in two hands and he didn't look like he was having crowflakes or rice crowkies or crow-ee-os or anything like that he just looked concerned and a little shellshocked and kind of also impressed by my temper so I let him stay (I don't have a choice, they like to let me pretend I do and it WORKS) and I swam back and forth, practicing my form as Sam taught me and tiring myself out and when I finished six fairly slow laps a bunch of people were there, just chilling, with their various breakfast dishes and coffee cups and I came to the ladder and asked if everyone could go back inside, that I'm fine, that I need to go in.
We're good, Ben says. As if they should stay for support. Not realizing that I didn't have a suit. I just took off my pajamas and dove into the pool. I don't think first.
Ok fine. I got out. Marched with confidence all the way around to where my pajamas and my toast were, picked up a piece of toast and stuck it in my mouth while I pulled on my pajama bottoms over wet skin and tried to pull on the top too but everything was pulling and binding and I didn't open the shed where the towels are (it's too early) and so I said fuck it and balled up my clothes and put them under one arm, took my dishes and made my way back across the lawn and inside the house buck naked, where I left my dishes on the counter and went straight upstairs to shower and dress.
God love them all, no one moved or said a word.