Author’s Note: Short post series & names have been either changed or omitted.

So…back “home” again. This was the single worst thing that I could have imagined happening since I got kicked out two years prior. It just wasn’t ideal for anything that I wanted to be doing.

Still, I was out of the situation I had been in. That was getting out of hand. Now, at least, I had a chance to start again and on my own terms—or so I thought.

The stress started almost immediately, almost like I’d only been away for the weekend.

One of the first things (and most common things) I was told not to do was “bring my pagan crap into their house” because it “scared my brother”.

Seriously? He wouldn’t know what the fuck any of it meant, let alone get scared by it. Sure we were raised Catholic but he has no concept of God or the consequences of anything in life or death much beyond his little world and his day-to-day routine. He doesn’t function much outside a mundane, practical routine. Philosophy and religion are as inconsequential to him as seeing the Louvre or Eiffel Tower or the Statue of Liberty – pretty to look at but would hold no meaning in his world whatsoever.

So firstly, I resented that they put their fear and insecurity on my brother’s shoulders.

To put it in realistic terms, my long hair would be what freaked him out a little. Seeing me in a cloak / skirt would freak him out because people / men don’t wear cloaks / skirts as day-to-day clothing… It was the “not James” part of me that freaked him out, I wasn’t the same brother that left home.

The second thing was the demand that I either get a job or go back to school. I said there was nowhere in any of the local towns that would hire me – I had no qualifications and was still preceded by my “Cloak Boy” reputation. (People in Camperdown had heard that I was moving back before I even appeared on the scene, that’s how “small country town” it was/is up there…)

So, given the circumstance, we went and met with the Vice-Principal of Camperdown College to see how I would fit back into the school. I will continue that stage of the saga tomorrow…