Less Like You

This is a challenge entry, and it also gives you a little bit of history for Justin.

Books are piled high on the desk, how many is unknown. As I glance down at the paper in my hands, I closed my eyes in annoyance. What is written is what I need to have done by tonight, my dad thinks that doing all this stuff will help me to lead my family, and to help the Excellency. What my father does is help with Foreign Affairs, in other words: He lies to the Countries around us. The Government in Ergot does not necessarily tell the truth, I know that without having to think about it. My father knows I would rather not follow in his footsteps, but my requests go unnoticed. And so he has me continually work on things such as the ways of the other Countries, but good relations with other Countries is not too popular. The Countries would rather bicker amongst themselves—if there was one thing my father was good at, it would be bickering. As I reopened my eyes I could see the shadow of someone walking back and fourth in front of the doors to the Study. I set down the papers on top of another book, and walked to the doors. I pulled the handles, thus opening the door, and who would it be but my brother. He looked distressed, then shocked as he noticed me leaning on the doorpost with an annoyed look on my face. He wanted to speak with me that much I could tell; jerking my head back inside the Study, my brother followed slowly behind, and he quietly shut the doors.

I offered him a chair; he gladly took it, than he tells me he had been pacing outside of the doors for a good hour. As I ask him why, he says that it was because our father was home. So he was wondering if I had anything done that my father wanted me to have done. “Why should I?” I asked in defiance. He didn’t answer; instead he just sat there twiddling his thumbs. “Are you worried about what would happen if he found out?” I asked. The most he could do was nod, and franticly at that. Sighing I sat down, as I glanced to my brother he had a nervous look on his face, he knew a confrontation was coming up. I also knew that, but it never seemed to hurry me up one-way or the other.
In a sense I didn’t mind these little confrontations, but I knew my brother did. He didn’t like the constant bickering between my father and me.

I was about to say something to give him a shred of assurance, but before I could I heard the doors open. And who should it be but my father himself, he had an angry look on his face, no doubt he learned that I hadn’t been working on what he wanted me to. I glanced to the stack of books, then to my little brother. Instead of looking worried, now he was full-fledged scared. He didn’t necessarily like my father, and who in the moment of noticing my little brother sitting in a chair motioned for Daniel to leave. And Daniel quickly complied, as he rushed out of the room I couldn’t help but feel sorry for him. Normally after the fights he would say something like ‘if I was just a little braver I—I’ and that would be all he would say. But it seemed like he was not sure if he would be even able to say that much this time, both of us could tell our father was in a bad way. As much as my father would like me to help out with the Foreign Affairs, I would rather stay out of it. More so I would like to be doing something else, but as he would always tell me it wasn’t my decision.

“I heard you didn’t work on what I told you to do Justin.” He would often begin. And he would almost know what I’d say to that,
“I had homework” That was my normal excuse, but a good one at that. The school I went to was hard on cramming knowledge into the students, any way necessary. I could see the anger boiling inside of my father, he had a short fuse, and my not doing what he asks would be the normal fire starter. He started pacing as I began to gather the books on the desk; he was ready to say something, but for some reason he held his tongue. Then he stopped abruptly; lifting his head he glared at me.
“You should learn to obey your elders boy.” He began. As he said those words I scowled, then let out a heavy sigh. I scratched my head, normally I would say some big comeback, but this time I chose to save my breath. “I thought I taught you better than that. But I guess not, instead you choose to do other things. Why they are more important to you I’ll never know, you should focus on learning on how to work with the other countries.”
“I don’t want to work with that stuff Dad, I have better things to do.”
“Oh I can see that,” He said in reference to my brother. Often he would say I spend too much time with him, and then I would go off and say something about how he and I actually enjoy being around each other. But it seemed he would rather not bring my brother any further into the conversation, no if he had his way he wouldn’t even speak to my brother. He liked to have control, and he would get really mad if he didn’t. I guess that’s what he was normally like, but for some odd reason my mother married him. I knew it wasn’t an arranged marriage, but there was something about him my mother liked. Before she died, they were so happy. But that was a long time ago, Daniel was just a little kid when our mother had gotten sick. But she tried to make the most of it, with the time she did have. It had shaken our father to the core, he then got engrossed in his work—coming back every now and then to check on us kids, but left the raising of us to the maids and butlers. You could say that my whole family is rich, which goes along with being the second most influential family around.