Not more than two sips of alcohol and the next day I received the utmost horrendous consequence other than being sent to jail, a hangover. Not that I was in jail, but the four couples that were having sex upstairs were. With a migraine,
“MR. COLLINS! This is your last warning!” bellowed Mr. Richards. I raised my head and looked around for Mr. Richards. He was at the front, with his pointer in hand and a chalk in the other. On the board was large letters spelling out P-O-E-T-R-Y and three noted themes. He dropped his chalk in the chalk holder, walked towards my desk. His stainless steel pointer shimmered through the air; a gunshot like it was as it hit my desk. “You keep your head up and your eyes wide open or I will have to give you detention. Agreed?”
I nodded my head in fear. He lifted the pointer and headed towards the blackboard. I looked to the left, where Mark was seated next to me, he handed me this toffee colored looking piece of sucking candy.
“It’s coffee candy,” he whispered to me. He opened his mouth to reveal an already dissolved version of the same candy. I took it and started to dissolve it down too. It kept me up long enough for the class to end. The only thing on my notebook in that class was “Poetry, the-”.
“Don’t worry, buddy, I got the notes for you,” Mark patted me on the back.
“Thanks,” I said.
Just as we exited the shady, dark, empty cave called English class, Mr. Richards called me back. “Mr. Collins, you are needed at the principals office.”
“Am I in some sort of trouble?” I asked him.
“Not that I am aware of, but I could inform the principal about your lack of attention in my class.” He added.
“I’m really sorry about that Mr. Richards,” I looked down at his desk.
He adjusted his glasses, and got up from his seat, “Yes, well, alls well that ends well isn’t it? I hope next time, you’ll write something down in that notebook of yours.”
“Yes sir.” I left the room; Mark was waiting for me outside. I told him I had to go to principal’s office and he left to go to his next class. The hallway was emptier now; a few kids were speeding down to get to the next class. Down towards the third story, and to the large room connected to a secretary desk, Mrs. Sanders was waiting for me in the principal’s office. The door’s window revealed a shadowy figure, sitting down at a desk adjusting a few papers and sorting the drawers. The secretary was gone, so I knocked and let myself in.
“Ah, you are here,” Mrs. Sanders got up form her chair, walked over to me and gave me a hearty handshake. She nodded her head in a motion that pointed towards two chairs in front of the principal’s desk. She wanted me to sit. I went to the empty seats and she sat back at her chair, behind the huge oak desk.
“Hello,” I greeted.
“Simon I-” She started to say something.
“Excuse me, please call me Quet, I do not like that name,” I said, kind of rudely.
“Quet, excuse me, I come to you today because we have a new student here,” she said.
“Why me?” I asked.
She looked at me and handed me a paper from her desk. It said “Honorary Leadership Student”.
“You and your friend, Mark, signed up for this club, so here you are,” she said. I forgot all about the club; Mark practically begged me to join and we never show up for the club monthly meetings. Mark always said it was a good for colleges. “I could look for someone else to show our new student around.”
“No, it is ok, I can do it,” I assured her.
“Okay well, here she is,” She said, “You can come in now.”
For a second, I had a hunch of who it was, and yet I was still shocked to see her face. She was wearing that black, fluffy skirt which ran down to her knees but a different belt. She wore a blain purple t-shirt and an orange tank top with a weird and tacky design on it. I recognized that dark, curly hair; it ran down to her shoulders. Her face and arms I could tell were tan but you could tell that she had a pale body. She walked in, her boots clanking the ground rather loudly, probably from being nervous at a new school. Her eyes were shimmering bright, hazel green.
I felt my eyes widen a little and my mouth opened, revealing a small hole which you could see my two front top buck teeth.
“Hey, it’s you,” I softly said.
“And it’s you, Mr. Decent,” she replied back.
“Do you know each other from somewhere?” Mrs. Sanders butted in.
“No, I just…” I said quickly back.
I took one more look at her; she stepped towards the desk and sat down in the chair next to me. She glanced at me and smiled and then looked back at Mrs. Sanders. I did the same.
“Quet, you are relieved of your classes as of now, so all you need to do is show her all the school’s departments, even the elective classes,” Mrs. Sanders ordered.
“Yes ma’am,” I confirmed.
“Oh have I told you her name yet? No? I’m so sorry; I just have a lot of work today. I’m trying to rush you two out of here. This is Amelia Henderson.” She said, “Amelia, Quet; Quet Amelia.”
She used hand gestures to point out who was who. I did not think it was necessary for it was only the two of us that are being identified. She looked at me and took her hand out in the wide open air.
“Please to meet you,” she said.
“Same to you,” I answered back. I reached out my hand and I shook hers.
“Okay, now go you kids, you only have half a day left.” Mrs. Sanders kicked us out of the office and locked the door. I could see her shuffling more papers and sorting folders on her desk.
“So, where to first?” Amelia asked me.
“Well since we are at the third floor, let’s start here and work up then down,” I suggested. She nodded her head in agreement and we started off in the Math department which is the third story. The school had a five story center house which was hailed by two smaller three story outer houses; called west wing and east wing. Behind the center house were small portables which held some elective classes and special advanced academic departments. Starting from the third story, which was the math department starts from the room nearest to the west wing; Pre Algebra, and ascending to the last room, the room closest to the east wing; Advance Placement College Math.
The fourth story was the science department, but had larger rooms. It came in the same order as the math department starting from west wing; life science, to the east wing; Advance Placement Psychology. The two biology teachers were performing a science experiment dealing with an enlarge mitochondria and an animal liver. It made much more sense when the teachers conducted the experiment. It was an interesting sight to see, nonetheless.
The fifth story was a little complicated because some teachers taught regular freshman English and Advance Placement Senior English. I took her into Mr. Richard’s class, to see what Junior English was like. We sat in the back and listened to the poems lecture. I had to live through this torment all over again. By now, she was very excited to start the classes. She seemed so eager to go down to the first and second story. But lunch began and we went all the way down to the cafeteria, where our great festivities began.
Mark was sitting at a rounded table as Amelia and I came up to him.
“Hey, Quet, who is that?” he asked.
“Mark, this is Amelia; and vise versa,” I greeted.
“Call me Amie, I don’t like that name,” she said.
“Well, hello, pretty lady,” Mark said, in a very horrible cowboy imitation.
“Well hello, Mark,” she responded, also in a very horrible cowgirl imitation.
Mark and I traded our Bob-Kicks and Knick-Knacks as usual; she was starring at our quirky transaction like it was some sort of black market trade. I noticed that she barely ate her lunch, half of a sandwich and a couple bites of her apple. I did not press the matter really; she could have been jittery because of the school tour.
“So, how long have you guys been friends?” she suddenly asked.
“Since…” I began.
“Since forever!” Mark said, “I remember as if it was yesterday.”
The conversation turned totally to Mark as he told the story of our first encounter to our last adventure with the desecration of our sacred river pool. She listened intensively, jotting down mental notes to herself. Just then a group of girls approached the table.
“Oh no,” Mark sighed.
“What?” I asked. I looked at him. He looked really scared and afraid.
“They have been after me all day, reporters!” he angrily whispered. Amie just sat there, following our every movements like her own. These girls were freshman, the freshmeat of the school. One was holding a small notebook and a pencil in her hands.
“Quet, make them leave,” Mark cried. I looked at the girls; they wore five pounds of make up and hot pink apparel. Light reflected off their shirts towards us, like some sort of disco light show. One opened her mouth, “Hi, we are from the School Newspaper!” Her preppy and perky voice sparked anger within me. I knew what they want, they should not have come. It was a rule in this school for a freshman to interview an upperclassman as an editorial for the school paper. It is lowerclassmen to lowerclassmen; upperclassmen to upperclassmen. It has always been that way; however, she seemed unaware of it.
“I would like to know about Mark Benning’s slight retardation,” she said.
“What?” Amie looked at the girl in amazement. After having a conversation with us, she did not even notice Mark and his… problem.
“Yes, I have heard that Mark Bennings has one of the highest grades in this school, and yet, he is retarded,” she informed back.
“Mark is not retarded,” I retorted, looking away. By this time, Mark had his head on the table, crying. “She said a bad word, Quet! No one should every say that word!”
“I just wanted an interview with him, please, I must know how-”
What used to be a perfect small pocket sized notebook was nothing more than paper shavings. I threw it back into her face and sat back down. The freshman’s eyes glared at me. “How could you do that?” her eyes said.
“I told you before, Mark Bennings is NOT retarded. That was your interview, now leave. We do not want your false information here. Get it straight next time, look into what you are doing rather than rushing to them,” I shouted.
She looked scared, almost as if she was about to cry. The group left; I went over to Mark, who still had his head on the table, sobbing. I rested my arm over his shoulder and tried to relax him. “It’s ok,” I said, “they are gone now; they will not bother you anymore.”
“Why are people so mean to me?” Mark whined.
“Because they don’t care about you, they care about themselves. All they want is to use you,” I explained, “You are not retarded, you are normal and unique.”
His sobs became less frequent and he lifted his head. “Those girls don’t know what they were saying, were they?” he asked.
I have him and hug, and patted his back. “Hey, don’t worry about it.” I forgot to realize that I was being closely watched by the seat next to Mark. I lifted my head to see the new girl sitting there, starring at me, straight into me. She was trying to find something, some hint that would give her a clue as to who I am or was. I got up; she still eyed my eye very closely. I looked randomly at the room, to see if anyone was watching. The bell rang for the next class; Mark stopped his sobbing and went to his next class. Amie and I continued our tour.