March was never really my favorite time of the year. It was raining all the time and the weather was unforgiving. Also we never had any vacation days off during this month, so I always ended up skipping a few days now and then. Like on St. Patrick’s Day, which was tomorrow morning on Monday.
I was somewhat happily sitting on the couch in my living room watching a movie on HBO with Dad while Mom was cleaning up the kitchen. It was only six o’clock now and I already wanted to curl up in my bed and go to sleep.
It was last week when I confronted Arthur in his class room, about him smoking. I don’t know if he stopped, or if he is being sneakier about it, but at least I can’t smell the stench of death in his classroom or on him anymore when I walk by.
We haven’t spoken much either since then as well, it’s been killing me honestly. My mood swings have at least dimmed down some. I’m not as much mad or sad, just trying to ignore that empty feeling on the inside somewhere near my heart.
“(Name) Honey, are you staying home tomorrow?” Mom called from the kitchen.
Leaning my head over the back of my chair in that general direction I let out a long drawn out groan “Naaaaaaaaaaaaauuuhhggaaaaaaaaummmmmmmmmmmm Yeah…? I’d like to, it’s nothing big right?”
Isn’t cool my parents are so laid back and chill that they’d let me skip a total of four days of school whenever I wanted because they just loved me and shit? That’s not actually the case; I had to do some weird thing in school or with my parents whenever I felt like skipping.
“It’s fine honey, just remember if you stay home this time you have you’ll have to do me a favor this time.” Mom walked in to the room drying of her hands and with a smile as I let out another groan.
“Okaaaaay,” I curled up in my chair and looked over to Dad on the couch. He slowly got up and made his way next to mom.
“Alright (Name), we’ll be back....whenever. If you need anything, call your friends. Your mother and I will be busy until further notice.” Dad gave off one of his to sweet smiles and lopped his arm with Moms.
I wanted to hurl at them so I just looked back to the TV. “Alright, Bye, don’t stay out to late, I only have 76 dollars for bale money so if anything happens you guys will spend the night in jail.”
They shared a few laughs, and soon were gone, leaving me home alone to my own despair and the show on TV. I looked over at my phone and watched it light it up, someone was texting me, pffft, forget that. I was ready to go to bed, and that’s just what I was going to do.
I woke up later in the morning the next day, around ten o’clock. No one was home again, I foung a note from Mom on my door.
There is left over chicken and some bread sticks from Olive garden in the fridge for you, ig you’re hungry, warm it up! I have to work late tonight with one of my employees! I’ll be home around six, so do me a favor and start dinner for your father around four thirty, he’ll be home at three today after working a double shift and let him sleep!
All the love in the world; Mom
I tossed the note away, in some direction near my desk in my bed room. Stumbling down stairs, I found my way to the couch and flopping down on it. “What a wonderful day to do nothing!” I mocked sarcastically. I was only twenty minutes into watching the News when my phone started ringing. A ring ton I don’t hear too often.
“Roman? Sup?” I spoke into the speaker. Roman was one of my close friends, despite him dating Karyan, he was like the big brother I always wanted. I’ve known him probably longer than Karyan has, and I was his first friend when he moved here back in third grade.
“Hmm? I’m okay, I called to ask if you’re in school today,” He said, I could hear plenty of background noise so I got the idea he was at lunch or something.
“No, I’m staying home today, why? Got something you need from me?”
“Actually, yes, I skipped today to, I got a doctor’s appointment at 2:10,”
I slowly sat up and narrowed my eyes. “But we get out at 2:15,” It sounded more like a question.
“Not worth it, you want to hang out? Someone needs to get you off your lazy ass soon or I’m going to be disappointed in you,”
“So? My concern on your opinion about me isn’t that great, but yeah, I’ve got nothing better to do, pick me up?”
“Sure, I’ll be there in about twenty, we can go to Reed’s or something and get some lunch,”
“Awwww,” I grinned and drawled out my next words, “But won’t Kay get upset that you’re skipping school with me today?”
“Actualllyyy…” He gave an awkward laugh and I could just imagine him rubbing the side of his head and then tugging on one of those brown locks of his whenever he gets caught in some kind of act. “She’s the one that wanted me to talk to you in the first place. I didn’t know you were acting wired or anything until she said something.”
I rolled my eyes, moving my phone to the other ear, “Geeze Rome, thanks for paying attention to me, you know, because you have better things, like basketball and shit to do rather hang out with your friends.”
“But all my friends are girls!” He yelled, causing me to pull the phone away a bit.
“See you soon Rome,” I smirked and hung up my phone after that. Looking over myself, I noticed I need a shower, which I gladly took, clothes that I picked out to fit the season of rain and mud. It was jeans, not my favorite but jeans and a large baggy sweat-shirt of a grey tank-top.
As I made it to the last step, my door creaked open and their stood my brown eyed friend. Roman was dressed the same as always. A red sweater over a white dress shirt of which the collar stuck out over the sweater’s neck line. He also had fairly normal jeans, a few holes and a beany hat covering half of his curly brown hair.
“Ready?” He smiled, and I looked up to the huge tall ass freak.
“No, I need food, now, please I’m dying!”
He chuckled and we ran out to his car and drove off to the local fast food joint in town. Reed’s, the place of all places to hang out on skip days. You could get a range from salads or super extra cheesy bacon cover and chilled fries. Oh yeah, those fries, those gold butter fries, I loved them.
It was during the middle of the ride when Roman started to say something. “Are you sure, you’re okay?” he asked, giving me a side glance and a smile.
“Ah, yeah, I guess,” I mumbled staring out the window in a haze. I was more trapped in my own brain rather than watching those that passed.
The car started to slow down at a red light and Roman fully looked over at me when we stopped. “Really? Hmm, well, did you know I have ESP?”
“ESP? What?” I lift my head from my hand and look over at him and I watched him grin, turning back to the road and hitting the gas causing me to lean back into my seat at the force.
“ESP, Extra Sensory Perception, means I can see beyond things, it’s like a sixth sense,” He explained.
I looked over to him, watching him drive with one hand on the wheel the over on the window, “That doesn’t make any sense Rome, what, can you see ghosts?” I scoffed and looked back to my window slumping over in my seat.
Chuckling he shook his head and steered the car in a right turn down the road and onto a through way. “No, not like that, I just always know when someone’s lying to me. It was hard for my parents to do the whole Santa gig, remember?”
I slowly sat back in my seat and turned to him, recalling my memories, and I did remember. When we were all little kids, we didn’t believe in Santa after fourth grade because Roman told us it was a big fat lie from out big meanie parents. I slowly started to laugh and shrugged, “Yeah, I do. So what do you mean Rome, that you know I’m not happy and something is bothering me?”
“Yep,” He stopped the car, and turned the key shutting it down after he parked in the parking lot of Reed’s. “I know a lot of things, trust me. I’m a Roman; I helped make the mighty Empire what it is today!”
I burst into a fit of giggles with him as we get out of the car and head up to the little shake called Reed’s. The first ‘e’ on the sign above the dinner flickered in and out, people stood out in front of the building, walking away happily with their food. “You mean, dead? The Roman Empire is no more, for about –I don’t know, a lot of hundreds of years,” I commented with a large grin.
We walked up to the dinner, finding a booth and sitting down a crossed from each other. A lady comes up to us, he hair in a messy red bun and she looked rather tired. “Sho’d ya guys be ‘en school ‘er somethen’” Her accented voice gave no hint of her origin but everyone knew this waitress, as Reed she was the owner too, also working as a waitress.
I worked her one summer, it was pretty fun, I worked with Savannah in the afternoon, both of use waitresses, and we got so much tip money!
“Just got back from the doctor’s and (Nick-Name) here was home alone sick so I felt like we could hang out, nothing new Reed, it’s all good.” Roman gave her a warm smile and a nod. Her name wasn’t Reed either, all we knew was Reed was her last name that was it.
“Shooo, m’kay doll. Now wu’d ya be haven’ taday?” Reed gave a us both a smile, and clicked her pen ready to write down our orders.
Roman and I decided to get a Jumbo Chilly Cheese Fries together and share.
“You going to tell me what’s wrong yet?” Roman pressed on back to the topic before and I slumped down and laid my arms out taking up the table.
“I know I know, it’s the whole reason you came out to get me, Karyan probably threatened you to do this too,” I muttered slowly sitting back up to watch the brown headed boy nod slowly with a grim look. “Sorry,”
“It’s fine, just tell me something and I’ll pass it on,” He shrugged.
I contemplated on telling him everything, but instead my mind came up with a different plan. “Well I can tell you it involves a guy,” I started and Roman looked at me with an expression of ‘Go own, I’m a good listen but I’m still a guy, so don’t gossip.’
“And we got in a fight, over stuff, something important to me versus him and blah blah blah, that was back in February and I’m still not over it.”
“Having a hard time forget about him?” Roman asked and grabbed a straw from the side, ripping off half the paper and then blowing on the straw shooting the rest of the paper cover at me.
I took the paper straw wrapper in my hands after it fell to the table and started twiddling with it as I nodded my head. “I see him every day of the week, I can’t forget about him even if I tried.”
“Do you regret it?”
“Regret being with him or the break up?”
“No, do you regret falling for him?”
I gradually moved my gaze up to Roman with a frown. I opened my mouth, then closed it and opened it again. I did this about eight more times before I shook my head. “I don’t love him, how can I love someone after only dating for about four months? Do you love Karyan?”
"I tell her so every night, so I would think so,”
“Don’t be a smart ass Rome, besides, you’ve been with her scene ninth grade, four years dude.”
“So, that doesn’t mean anything to me, I don’t care how long we’ve been together I still love my girlfriend. This is coming from a guy (Nick-Name), we don’t care how much time we’ve spent together. You can fall in love on the first day, or the first year. Loving someone means you care about them and want that person in your life, right? We can control who we love, but once we start loving them, we can’t stop.” Just as Roman stopped, Reed came over and gave us our fries with a smile. Roman sat back in his seat with a content smile and snatched a fork up and poked once of the fries before taking it and devouring it whole.
Suddenly my appetite no longer existed after listening to him, I wanted to start crying again, get really mad and break something then curl up into a ball of sappy nothing until the empty frustrated pit in my chest vanished again.
Roman started to get concerned over me, and to make him stop worrying I put on a smile and forced myself to eat and pick at the food. I joked, laughed, giggled and had fun with my friend, but that didn’t change the feeling of self-hatred and bitterness inside me.
I ended up going home after an hour running around town with Roman, he dropped me off at home saying good bye, wishing me to get well and leave.
I had to start dinner, like Mom asked and that was the first thing I did, we were going to have homemade pizzas or something. Mom was very creative with cooking, it was something she loved a lot and she always wanted to get the family involved. Every year for Thanksgiving when we went to Grandma’s house, Mom made sure everyone, everyone cooked something. And we had a big family, imagine a number between 50 to 20 people all crammed into a small kitchen trying to cook.
It wasn’t much longer until Dad got home and said he was going to take a nap before dinner, after him, Mom got home too and went straight to the kitchen.
I however, was left spread out on the couch watching TV. I jumped when our doorbell rang out of the blue. “I got it,” I called out to Mom.
“Alright!” She yelled back as I rolled off the couch. As I walked over to the door, unlocking it I turned back to Mom again as she called, “If it’s someone important to work get me!”
I pulled open the door open half way and watched Mom’s head pop out from around the corner with a smile. “Okay, whatever,” I told her and looked back to the door as Mom walked back to the kitchen.
........You know that feeling, when you see something, and the only thing you want to do is wear a cool pair of sunglasses and slowly pull them off like a bad ass or from the one guy in the dinosaur movie? Yeah, I had that feeling right now. “M-Mr...ah...Mr. Bonnefoy, what are- ah…what are you doing here?”
Standing before me was a scowling blonde with crossed arms and actually a shaved face for once in god knows how long. He shrugged causally, rolling his eyes. “Oh, I don’t know, maybe because of this!” he jabbed a finger angrily at a corpse at the bottom of my front stairs. “I found him outside the high school’s weight room, drunk and crying about something.”
The weight room?...ohhh, Arthur, what’s gotten into you. I looked behind me, no one was there. “It’s just some friends, Mom, I’ll take care of it!” I yelled and hurried out the door and shutting it behind me. I sighed and pinched the bridge of my nose, “Could you stand that way, and away from the windows?” I asked the sober teacher.
He simply nodded and moved out of any window view, while Arthur was still a sobbing mess on the ground. He must have been walking around school, getting nostalgic about all our favorite school hides outs, the weight room had the best of secret memories, I ain't tell you guy’s shit about that! Use your imagination; there is a lot of work out stuff in there that make great toys, like yoga balls.
“You found him, drunk like this?” I asked, looking back to Mr. Bonnefoy how was leaning on his car facing away from the house.
“Not really, we were in a board meeting and he got up and left when we started talking about the senior graduates. We have to discuss their grades, roll in school, college opportunities, graduation and, just reporting on students and so on. But that’s when we got to you, Miss. (Last Name),” he stopped and took a breath with an angry little growl to himself and cruse in French. He started to tell me more about it too as Arthur was still curled in a ball, in some state of sleeping and crying.
All the teachers working for grade 9 – 12 sat in the meeting room as the moved on to the next student to discuss about. They just got done arguing over Miss. Wolfe and her situation; it came to an agreement, to never discuses it again. Next was (Name) (Last Name).
“Alright! Settle down guys, who has Miss (Last Name) for homeroom right now?” said the super intendant, none other than the grandfather of the Vargas brothers. Dr. Vargas, as everyone called him and his cheery ways.
“I do, sir!” Elizabeta raised a hand and happily cheered. “She’s a very bright student sir! There seems to be nothing she can’t do! She did say she didn’t like Geometry too but, that’s okay! Although I am concerned on her participation, she will not talk unless she is spoken too. She also sometimes will just completely ignore what’s going on in class. From what I told, she was never like that with Ludwig, he got her to actual volunteer to do problems or tutor people. I can’t get her to do anything.”
The super intendant nodded, writing down fair notes on what was being told to him. “Mhmm, Mhmm, good- good. Anything else?”
The Hungarian nodded and looked down at her sheet for several seconds before going on. “Her grades are above Average, and she seems fine and is not struggling. I enjoy teaching her sir,”
“Thank you Elizabeta, Ahh next please!”
Nobody said anything for a few seconds, until the obviously oblivious teacher realized he was next in line to report. “Oh, sorry sir, that is me, aru!” Yao stood up and gave a slight bow before he went on with his report. “Miss (Last Name) is one of my best students! She is fairly happy in class and with learning; she asks plenty of questions too! Earth Science is a hard class for some, she is fine and grades are above! She give no trouble and has all her lab minutes now too, aru!”
Next was Feliciano, he happily performed his roll before his Grandfather. “Salve!” He cheered and waved.
Dr. Vargas gave the same smile “Salve puerum! What do you have to say?”
“Hmm, (Name) is a very good student! But sometimes she likes to give up in class; she doesn’t like learning a different language. She’s kind of stubborn and hard on herself if she gets something wrong,” Feliciano let out a small frown and shrugged. “She also can be a downer sometimes. She loves saying ‘Why should we learn a different language? Half of the people here can’t even write or speak English!’”
There was a sour noted scoff from the other end of the room, somewhere in the direction of an angry Brit chugging down tea. Everyone looked in his direction and Arthur took fast note of it. “What?” he bitterly spat.
“Do you have something like a virulent comment to add Arthur?” Dr. Vargas asked with a raised and challenging brow.
“She’s right, that’s all I’ll admit for now.” Arthur turned his full on attention back to the papers he was grading and more of his tea. He wasn’t even looking to see if anyone got the answers right, the direction of the homework said to just put down name, date, and a simile to the word monotone in the top corner. Anyone that did the 40 questions got a big fat red ‘F’ scribbled on their paper, and so far, that was everyone.
The other teacher went on, Alfred said she was good in class, but she looks like she is distracted a lot, and hard to keep her focused on work. Francis said she is a wonderful artist and he’s proud to be her teacher, but he said she talks too much in his class, getting her behind because she sits with her friends. Gilbert said she is good, but not so awesome.
“She’s in one of my smaller classes of only ten students. Awesomely enough it’s five boys and five girls. (Name) is one of the only girls in that class that participates in gym! All the other girls just stand around talking or texting. And I can tell none of those girls are her friends because she refuses to talk to them or be on their team.” Gilbert explained as he looked down at more important things on his phone. He set it down for a second and shrugged. “She’s okay, if she could get rid of the sour attitude, then I’d think she’d be awesome enough for a 95 grade.”
Dr. Vargas noted things down again and looked back to Gilbert with a pleasant smile and nod of his head in thanks. He turned to the last teacher on (Name) schedule and stared at him for about five minutes before anyone noticed.
Arthur still was angrily grading papers, whatever was in his tea made his temper extremely short, so short that he was to the point of just failing everyone! “Arthur?” he looked up at his name and snapped his head with furrowed brows at the caller.
“What?!” he yelled and noticed it was Dr. Vargas, who wasn’t even mad bro, you don’t even know. The super intendant gave a questioning look and raise of his brow and slowly Arthur caught the drift. Everyone was watching him oddly enough. How many people do you think have money on bets that he’ll get fired today? I’d say a lot.
“Oh.....yes, about-” He stopped and sucked up his pride and swallowed it down with the lump in his throat. “Miss (Last Name) is a fairly good student in class. She….she takes pride in her work and I can tell she does when I read it. There is nothing bad I have to say about her.”
“Doesn’t she stay after with you a lot, or during lunch? I see her in the halls sometimes hanging around your room,” Alfred asked looking down to the Brit, whom wasn’t in the mood to be questioned.
But even this question brought up the curiosity of Dr. Vargas who looked between the two and back to Arthur, “What does he mean?” he asked.
“Towards-” He paused, trying to phrase this just right, “- The beginning of the year, (Name) would often stayed after with me to get work done on her own, or ask for help. I also had her tutoring for me. And for during Lunch, it was the same thing. She hasn’t been doing it anymore; I think she’s done being such a teacher’s pet in my class, which is fine! But,.......” He left his words hanging and shook his head, giving a wave of dismiss by his hand “Nothing, that’s it.” he finished.
The rest of the teacher went on with the meeting, still on the topic of (Name), as they talked about her overall average, and college needs with the counselor of the high school. It wasn’t until something was brought up, did Arthur abruptly get up and leave during the middle of the meeting. Apparently what triggered his actions was talk about her writing talent.
Francis was the first one to react, and go find him, after the meeting was over though. Nobody really wanted to bug Arthur when he was so upset to the point he just got up and left. You need to give the man some time to cool down you know! No rush, No rush!
But Arthur did the complete opposite, he went to his class room, got the flask full of a heavy alcoholic drink and danced away to the music in his head as the wonder drink did it works. He’d stumble around the school for about an hour before he collapses in front of the weight room were Francis finds him twenty minutes after he fell there.
Offering to take him home, Francis helped him walk outside and to his car. “W-wait no, no man. Ju-just no. Please we- we need to go some-somewhere else first, I-I tell you the directions, Mkay? O-okay!” Arthur slurred out as Francis gave a slight scowl and shook his head.
“Lead the way mon ami,” Francis pulled out of the parking lot and followed the horrible slurred directions, until the pulled into the drive way of a two story house in a nice neighborhood a few miles away from school.
Arthur got tangled up in the seat beat, but eventually flung it off and fell out of the car door onto the muddy gravel driveway, he let out a groan of pain but got up on his hands and knees and crawled as far as the porch steps. “I’m sorry, I’m sorry, whatever I did, whatever I said I take it back, I’m sorry (Name)!” he cried out as he gave up curling into a ball.
Francis watched from his car and slowly got out as he realized what was going on. He growled in disgust at first, but he told himself better, as he learned what a corrupt school he worked at. He gave in to his humanity, and sided with that of Love, as he always would whenever he saw it. What more is there to love than love alone, right? Isn’t that what he always says? Indeed it seems so.
After the great explanation, Francis dragged Arthur back to his car, even if he fought the whole time, and got him into the back seats. But the Brit let out please for me, he kept on saying he need to see me, this need to be done today. He sure was hell of a fighter when he’s drunk.
“Arthur?” I spoke and he looked up from the ground he was trapped on as Francis had to sit on him to keep him from running into my house and freaking out my parents. The drunken gentlemen looked up at me with watered eyes and pushed Francis off him.
Crawling up to me, in this miserable state, it was pathetic almost, I felt bad for him. I felt even worse, to know I was the one again, to make him feel this way. I hate this lust I got for toying with people’s emotions. The high I get when doing the wrong thing, I always felt like I could right all wrongs; make them a secret that only I could know. But instead, I get caught, someone finds out, horrible things happen and all the wrong bad things come back and kick me in the face.
“(Name), (Name), please!” Arthur pleaded as he kneeled in front of me. “I’m sorry, I don’t remember much of what I did but I didn’t mean it! I can’t keep on going on in life if I know you hate me, I at least want you to forgive me! Please at the very least do that!” He cried out with hands clasped together, begging for my forgiveness as embarrassed tears stream down his once beautiful and well handsome face.
“Arthur, come on, let’s get you in the car,” I said avoiding his please. I didn’t want to deal with this while he was acting like this, that’s for sure. Any second now I can see Mom running out with a butcher knife, not even caring that these guys are my teachers and scream at them to get off her lawn at seven pm. Dad would be right behind her with nunchucks or something as he yells to the world he is Chuck Norris’s lost brother so don’t mess with him or his family. And both of them would be in pajamas, just like me. My family is lazy and beautiful about it, please try it sometime.
“No, No!” Arthur tried to fight back but he didn’t seem to want to hurt me, so at least his body obeyed while his mouth blabbered on more about everything. I got him to sit down on the car, half hanging out of it but still, “(Name) no! I can’t go! Not until I know you don’t hate me! I don’t even remember anything, I’ll I’ve been doing is drinking again, you were right! I’m at rock bottom all over again, I want to get out but knowing I’ve done so much to upset you I can’t leave this hole! I can’t stop digging my own grave yet!”
I sighed giving in, I didn’t care at the moment that Francis was watching us, because you know what, FUCK EVERYHTING! Not in the mood people, get a move on here. “You didn’t help like you promised you would, you also said you didn’t want to mess up your life and ruin your it over something, even though dating me was the biggest mistake of both your lives. Because doing that caused all this. A awhile later I was told you almost got fired for smoking, even though you said you didn’t want to ruin your life, you were doing it just fine on your own anyways.” I spoke grimly.
Arthur settled down a bit and rolled into the back seat of the car as he took in my words. I was about to shut the door when he stopped my, opening the door back up and grabbing me and pulling me to him. “I’m sorry, I should have helped.” He breathed into my hair as he tightly hugged me.
I instantly hugged him back, not even thinking about it and I took in his sent. Behind the toxic smell of smoke on him, I smelled the cologne he used on him, and pepper mint mixed with tea imbedded in his clothes. I felt each fiber and muscle of my heart instantly break open at this simple act and all the memories of longing come up.
“Arthur, you’re drunk, you should get home soon.” I said pulling away but he still held on to my arm at a distance.
He frowned at me and shook his head, “Not drunk enough,” He said and groaned a bit taking his free hand to his head. He pulled me one more time, planting a sour vodka flavored kiss on my lips and quickly pulled away. Sadly he whispered “I don’t know why I did this, love.
I can never regret ever loving you, even if you never did say anything to me, or started this like you keep blaming yourself; eventually I would have taken you myself and ran away. There was no way to ignore feelings. Neither of us would have stopped our relationship no matter how it starts or ends. But even then, I still love you (Name),”
He finally let go of my arm, hanging his head in what could only be called shame and self-pity as he calmed himself down and sat in the car properly. As I closed the door, half way to shutting it I sucked up my pride and spoke. “Hey Arthur?” He didn’t move his head to face me, but I saw him looking at me from the corner of his eyes. “I love you too,” I slowly shut the door, and took in a jagged breath. “Take him home Francis,” my voice shook and cracked at the end.
The blonde walked up to me with concern on his face, “Are you ok-”
“Go!” I cut him off and rapidly shook my head, “Hurry up before anyone sees!” I yelled with a stiff stance as it because harder and harder to breath.
He backed away with a nod of his head and said one last thing, “I won’t tell anyone about this, but if you get caught, I’m not covering for you guys and I know nothing about this.”
I nodded my head, and quickly turned my back away from the car. Listening to is start up and drive away, once it was long gone down the road, I feel to my hands and knees, I was shaking as bad as a tree with all of these emotions. I gradually pulled my hands down my face, cleaning away the tears off my sad smile.