by Dasiy Prescott
A new romantic comedy about love, letting go, and little green men from USA Today Bestselling author Daisy Prescott.
My father was abducted by aliens.
Or so I believed for the last eighteen years.
After my mother’s death, I moved to Roswell, capital of all things alien. I’m going to find out the truth and nothing will stop me . . . except Boone Santos.
Compared to the intergalactic tinfoil hat brigade, he’s a god amongst mere mortals. Too handsome for his own good (and mine), with a grumpy arrogance, and the most beautiful smile ever—he smashes my plan to pieces like a UFO crashing into the desert.
I need a tinfoil hat for my heart.
Do I believe in aliens? I’m not sure.
What do I believe? I’m not going to fall in love with Boone. Definitely not . . .
I’m never coming back here.
“Well, thanks for taking everything.” I wipe my hands on my skirt and try to put them in the dress’s pockets, only remembering too late this dress doesn’t have them.
What a waste of a nice blue floral summer dress. Every dress should have pockets. So should cardigans. This is why I buy mine in the men’s section of thrift stores. Old man cardigans always have pockets for candy or rubber bands, or whatever old men need to carry in their sweater pockets. My own grandfather put butterscotch and star mints in his. At his funeral a few years ago, I snuck a couple pieces of each into his casket.
Full of rejects from the garage sale, the big truck drives away. I stand alone in the driveway. The desire to wave good-bye hits me in the center of my chest, and I realize it’s not the stuff I’m going to miss, it’s my life.
Behind me, my grandparents’ house, the only home I’ve ever known, is an empty shell. Shadows of old frames and mirrors fill the walls, revealing the true colors of the Laura Ashley floral wallpaper my grandmother installed in the eighties. Sunlight faded carpet darkens where the sofa and Grandpa’s favorite recliner once sat. Upstairs, the bathroom sink still drips, unaware no one is here to curse at the incessant tap, tap, tap against the pink porcelain.
Let the new owners deal with the unreliable plumbing.
The closing is tomorrow. A new family will move in and fill this house with their own memories. I hope they replace the carpet—it’s seen some shit. Literally.
No living family.
Can an adult be an orphan? Sure feels that way.
An orphan at twenty-seven. Too old for Daddy Warbucks to swoop in and adopt me into a life of wealth. No adorable mutt by my side to listen to my sad story.
I don’t even have cats.
The last pet I had was a depressed goldfish. He could barely muster up the interest to do laps around his bowl. I could totally relate to him feeling trapped, living a monotonous existence without purpose or passion.
My entire life has been spent in this faded upstate town, long past its prime. Whatever good or interesting that could happen here, already has. Tethered here by my family and small town expectations, I’ve tried to make the most of growing up in a place where success is an echo and hope is a memory.
Now there’s no reason to stay.
A strange sense of freedom expands my ribcage as I inhale the thick, humid air of the New York August day.
Now I can go anywhere. Adventure and the open road await.
I stayed because of her.
Mom left once. Right out of high school. She packed up, impatient to put miles between her and this forgotten place. When she came home six months later, pregnant and married, her adventure became an example of why it’s better to accept our place in the world than expose ourselves to unknown disappointments.
At least that’s what the locals like to remind me.
The grass is never greener.
What about my father?
He followed her home and stayed. For a while.
Until he left in the middle of the night.
At first mom said he was away on a business trip.
Then the story changed to caring for a sick relative out of state.
Eventually, she told me the truth.
He’d been abducted.