The weekend passed peacefully. First term grades were released for Dawn and Delmarya (Deli).
Deli got the expected.
Dawn did well too.
But no one had seen much of Dysis who still had her first term finals to take. She’d fallen fast and hard for Rashad. The two spent the entire weekend together. Dysis was enamored by everything about him, including his odd and messy eating habits.
They didn’t separate until late Sunday evening, when Rashad’s family contacted him saying that because of an emergency he needed to come home right plumming now. Things turned out okay for him, but Dysis had spent the last 48 hours bewitched by love, oblivious to everything but Rashad, which meant that she’d not done even one thing related to her university classes.
The next day she had a final paper to write, a presentation to prepare and present, homework to finish, and two final exams to take. But by the time Rashad left on Sunday and Dysis realized the poor state of her affairs, she only had enough energy to crawl into bed.
Panicked, she slept as little as her body would tolerate and woke early Monday when only the vampires were awake.
For reasons unknown to Dysis, Deli was being weird. First, she’d seemingly jumped in front of Dysis as Dysis was walking towards the computer. Then, when Dysis asked Deli to move because she was in the midst of an academic crisis and needed to write her final paper right now, Deli was slow about it. Deli even hissed at her. Dysis knew that hissing was involuntary, but it was creepy and her sister had never done it to her before. She didn’t have time to think about what was up with Deli as she was busy and still determined to end the term with a strong GPA.
The paper finished, Dysis calmed slightly and went downstairs to grab a quick breakfast and tackle the next thing: her homework.
Bored, Asher thought it’d be funny to tease his daughter. Deli ignored them both.
Asher: You’re only doing your homework now? Aren’t you better off dropping out and getting married?
Asher: But maybe Foxbury’s distinguished degree program isn’t for you…
Dysis: It’s fine!
Pissed and not realizing that her father was “only” teasing her (albeit in a mean way at the wrong time), Dysis became very angry. Asher knew that he could be incredibly unkind, but he hadn’t meant to hit a nerve just then. Upset that his daughter didn’t see the humor in his “joke”, he took out his frustrations on the fish upstairs.
Homework finished, Dysis moved to the next thing: her presentation.
It wasn’t finished, but she had something decent. Worse case scenario: she’d just turn in what she had. Now, she had an exam to take. Had she studied? No, but hopefully that wouldn’t matter. Her plan was to forego all studying: take an exam, return to complete her presentation, take another exam, and then present.
Asher aside, the Fiers were sympathetic . They knew of Dysis’ ambitions and didn’t want to see her fail out of college due to a temporary lapse in judgment.
Her mother, Adelise, was the first to offer assistance.
Confident that things would be okay and wanting to be seen as an adult, Dysis rejected her mother’s help.
Even Deli was concerned and checked on her sister, but seeing that Dysis appeared to be an expert in procrastination and okay, Deli left without interrupting.
Adelise was not convinced, but she had to leave Dysis alone as she couldn’t do Dysis’ work for her. While Dysis worked, Adelise experienced her own mini-crisis. She’d prided herself on being an amazing parent, one who could (if she wanted) outbrag every other parent. One of her sons was a master painter. One of her daughters was a business tycoon. Other children were excellent homemakers. These five youngest who’d just turned into young adults and still lived in the home were surely destined to succeed as well. Since they were toddlers, Adelise had devoted herself to their upbringings. They’d always had all As.
So what had gone wrong with Dysis? Had she inadvertently neglected her daughter because she was the middle child of these five and not Adelise’s biological child? Is that why the girl lost her mind over a boy and put her university career at risk?
Concerned, Adelise ran upstairs to the small office to browse parenting forums. Unfortunately, her fears were confirmed as she’d only sought the advice of select Tiger Moms who told her that she’d not only failed Dysis by not imposing a curfew and sending that boy away, but she’d also failed Darius when he didn’t get any scholarships.
Meanwhile, Dysis had sorted out her presentation and was feeling great.
But as she was returning from taking her last exam, she realized she’d made a critical error. She couldn’t wait until evening to give the presentation. She actually only had about 20 minutes before she’d miss the transportation to take her to where she needed to be to give it.
So she ran.
And she ran.
But she didn’t make it. If she failed or got kicked out of university because of this, she didn’t know what she’d do.