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Mirabella #3 – Dad’s New Girlfriend

October 9, 2009


I have to admit the week started well. Finally, the promotion to Manager. A small step toward my dream of one day becoming a celebrity chef, but a step nonetheless. It meant more money, better hours, and the best bonus of all — my hands would no longer be permanently infested with the stench of hot dog.  To celebrate, Dad invited me over to his house to make me a big breakfast, just like old times. I can’t tell you how excited I was. All I could think about all morning as I got ready was how nice it would feel to sit down with Dad over a big stack of pancakes and just talk. Like we used to.


When I got there, though, it seemed like no one was home. I used the spare key to let myself in to use the bathroom and figure out where Dad had gotten off to. As I walked through the door, it was a little surprising to hear soft jazz coming from Dad’s stereo…he was always more of a rock ‘n roll guy. But, hey, people change, tastes change. I get that.


The jazz mystery was solved the second I walked out of the bathroom and saw Dad whispering with his new girlfriend, Bella. Like I said, I understand that people change. What I don’t get is people’s entire personalities changing just because they’re with someone new. Maybe I was just angry at Dad for shacking up with someone other than Mom, but I don’t think so. I think I just felt something was off.

I stood there in the den feeling totally awkward and out of place. After a few noisy attempts to clear my throat, Dad turned my way. But when Dad finally noticed me, he seemed confused.

“Mira, sweetie. What are you doing here?”


“Um, the celebration breakfast? The one YOU told ME to come over for?” I said.

“Oh, Mira…oh gosh, I’m sorry…I…”

“Dad, come on. I mean, you’re still in your pajamas! It’s the middle of the morning!”

I’d had it. I’d had it with Dad’s flaky behavior. I’d had it with his strange new girlfriend. So I left.


There was something about Dad’s girlfriend Bella I didn’t like…something so familiar, yet eerie…I just couldn’t figure her out, or the feeling. As I walked away from Dad’s house, though, I started to feel bad. I mean, I’d spent entire days in my pajamas. Who was I to yell at my Dad? He was only human after all. I turned around to go back and apologize, and to see what I could salvage of the day, but it seemed Bella was already helping him forget our argument. Ugh. I really didn’t need to see that, so I just went home.


Dad called later that day, but I was done.

“Dad I don’t know what happened to you. That woman…that Bella…she’s done something to you. I can’t believe you don’t see it!”

“Dad…no more. I can’t take it. Maria can’t take it. No more of you and your weird behavior, and especially no more Bella!


And he hung up on me. My own father hung up on me. Life couldn’t get any worse at that moment.


There was more…through it all I had this constant feeling someone, somewhere, was watching me.

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