I went back home with Phoebe, and we just sort of ran through the rain like we were madmen or something. I really don’t care what my parents would think when I got home, anymore and I was ready to take any punishment they had for me.
On the way there, I stopped, because I saw that damn pond that has all those damn ducks. Old Phoebe thought I was crazy or something because they were gone. But, then I heard this loud, goddam noise, and I looked up and there were about 100 of them all flying in a big arrow to the south. “So that’s where they go. They get out of their home and go free into the rest of the world.
” Phoebe just stood there in awe for a minute, like she had seen a magician or something, and then said, “Your hat is going to be ruined. Come on let’s go home. I’m cold.” I just took off my dumb hat and threw it in that pond and then gave Phoebe my jacket and we ran as fast as we could, while still holding hands the rest of the way home. When we got there, mom completely jumped all over me like she had thought I was dead and came back to life or something and she said, “Oh, Phoebe! Where have you been? You’re going to catch pneumonia staying out in the rain like that! HOLDEN?! Oh my gosh! What happened? Are you alright? Are you hungry? Sick? Please tell me you’re not hurt or something worse like getting kicked out of school another time! Oh my gosh! Holden? Honey? You didn’t get kicked out didya? DIDYA? I’m very disappointed in you! You’re father is going to be so mad! What am I going to do with you? Oh, dear…” My mom is so damn touchy. She kept on going with this and that for almost five hours or something. After she had almost finished blowing her guts out, my dad came in all tired from work and all, and when he saw me, I thought his head was going to burst from turning so damn red. I knew I had it coming.
He yelled at me for almost a whole goddam hour, and then we hugged and made up and all or some goddamn thing like that. Then, my parents started nagging at me about where I was going to go to another phony school. I felt like throwing up thinking about going to another phony school like Pencey.
And then, they started talking about how I needed to “become more dedicated in school” and how they knew some phony doctors out west near Hollywood. I know how they are. They will just tell me a whole load of crap about trying harder and asking a lot of stupid questions. And this is right after I just got home! Jesus Christ. Then, my mom got all teary-eyed and all, and I just couldn’t say no.
My dad just kind of nodded. He just nodded his head like that would put me on the train to some goddamn place I didn’t even know the name of. Phoebe made me so depressed.
I mean she looked so sad when she heard I was going out west to see those psychoanalyst guys and everything. I told her I wasn’t going to be gone that long. Jesus Christ. She can be so emotional. I stayed home for about a month after that, and then, my parents got stuff all worked out with D.
B. in California. I really didn’t want to go. It felt like I’d just gotten back home, and they were shipping me off again. Jesus Christ.