Chapter One: What's All The Hubub, Bub?

Chapter One: What's All The Hubub, Bub?

A Chapter by 20 Locks - Hustla Extraordinaire

Sometimes "Virtual" Can Become A Reality...

It didn’t take Ethan very long to notice that Shelley had been staring at him for the last ten minutes of class. So he wasn’t surprised when a note flew over his way. He opened the note slowly but with great anticipation.
As far as crushes go, Ethan had been completely consumed by Shelley since the second grade and she had hardly noticed him at all. Sure, she had been nice to him, the usual “hi” and “bye” in the hall kind of thing, but it wasn’t until recently that Ethan had been on Shelley’s radar.
His hands were shaking so badly that he could hardly get the paper to unfold. As the words started to make their way from the paper to Ethan’s brain, he could hardly believe what he was reading!
“Dear Ethan” it started.
“A bunch of us are going to the mall after school to hang out and I thought you might like to come. If so, let me know so we can meet up. I really, really want you to go so please say yes.”
As if an angel signed it, the signature was clearly present with the words:
“XO Love, Shelley”
Those words were the cherry on top. “Love Shelley” he said over and over in his head.
Ethan’s heart had definitely stopped beating and now his stomach was taking over. He was about 5 seconds away from throwing up and had to think fast. He couldn’t let Shelley see him like this! He stood up as quickly as possible and ran out the door waving at Miss McPherson and making “sick” gestures. He ran all the way down the hall into the boy’s bathroom just in time. He could hear the school bell ringing. Whew, he had made it.
The day he had been waiting for had finally come. What to do? What to do? He had had a crush on Shelley for so long and now that the day had finally come where he could actually have a shot at the hottest girl in school, he just knew he would blow it.
Should I go? He asked himself over and over. What if I say the wrong things? What if she doesn’t like me?
“What are you doing, man?” A voice from behind him said.

Ethan was startled. “Oh, uh, I was just finishing up...” Ethan replied as he nervously realized he had been thinking out loud.
He ran back out into the hallway and headed for his locker.
“Hi Ethan” said Carrie, another sophomore “hottie” and best friend of Shelley. “Are you going to the mall and hanging with us?”
“Uh, yea, sure”, Ethan replied as he smiled.
“Ok, well, Shelley’s at her locker, you should let her know,” said Carrie.
“Um, ok”, he quickly responded as he leapt over a freshman dropping books and headed down the hall toward Shelley’s locker.
Don’t screw this up man he thought as he walked toward her.
She had the most beautiful smile, long, dark hair, and creamy skin. Perfect. She was an angel living on Earth and Ethan was sure she was sent from Heaven with a stamp from God himself. Every guy in the school wanted to be with her and only one had. Brent.
As if a horror movie had begun playing and Ethan couldn’t stop the reel, Brent came around the corner just in time to see Shelley wave Ethan over and smile at him with her saint like lips.
It was over now.
The first punch was such a surprise that Ethan hardly noticed it. He was still visualizing the luscious angel lips. But the second one sent him backward and he landed on the hall floor with a THUD!
“Stay away from Shelley, you little a*****e or It’ll be worse the next time.” Brent glared with his teeth gritted together and right in Ethan’s face.
“Brent, NO!” Shelley yelled. “WE are no longer dating Brent! You need to get used to that idea and get lost!”
Brent turned to leave.
“There’s more where that came from Fairchild. Heed the warning.”
“Uh, Ooh, my head”, Ethan complained.
“Oh my God, I am so sorry Ethan, said Shelley. He just isn’t getting it. We broke up two weeks ago and he just won’t leave me or anyone I talk to alone. He’s nuts!”
“Oh it’s ok, Shelley”, he replied.
For some reason whenever she was near he forgot what he was doing, feeling, everything. He became completely oblivious to his surroundings.
“Do you still want to go to the mall and hang out with all of us? I mean, I will understand if you say no”, Shelley said sheepishly.
“Oh sure, I’ll go, Ethan said. He wasn’t going to let Brent ruin the chance he had been given to be near the girl he had dreamed of for years. “Can Jonathan come with us though?”
Jonathan had been Ethan’s best friend since Kindergarten. If he was going to go the mall and possibly have to deal with Brent again, he didn’t want to do it alone.
“Um, sure” said Shelley hesitantly.
Jonathan was a lot smaller, thinner and well, not as popular as Ethan. But, they had been best friends and none of this meant anything to Ethan. They were best “buds” and “brothers from another mother”. Jonathan also played guitar in Ethan’s band and they argued daily on who was going to play what. They were practically inseparable.
“Ok, what time do you want us there and where are we meeting?” he asked.
“Meet us at the food court at 4, she said. “Don’t be late!” she replied as she threw him another flirty smile and left.
Ethan slumped back down onto the floor. He had a date with Shelley Perkins, the hottest, sweetest, smartest, sexiest girl in the school. Was he dreaming? Ouch, no, his head was pounding from the beating her ex-boyfriend had just bestowed upon him. He definitely wasn’t dreaming.
“What the hell happened to you?” asked Jonathan as he approached and could obviously see Ethan had gotten into some trouble.
“Typical Brent Bolt” he replied.
“What????” Jonathan exclaimed. “Where is that a*****e? I’ll show him..I’ll teach him he can’t..”
“You’re rambling man. It’s ok, I’m fine. Brent couldn’t hurt a fly. He just caught me off guard. He won’t get me again. BUT I do want you to come with me to the mall at 4. Shelley and a couple of her friends want to meet us there at the food court.”
“All right” Jonathan replied with a certain teasing tone to his voice. “When did this all go down?”
“Here,” Ethan said as he handed him the note from Shelley. “She’s been staring at me for the last couple days maybe even weeks.”
“What? Wow” Jonathan replied. “You have a date with the hottest chick here dude.”
“Yep”, Ethan replied. “And I almost threw up in the bathroom. What am I going to do?”
“You’re going to head home, take a shower and put on some jeans and go to the mall. What do you mean, ‘what are you going to do?’ She sounds like she’s crazy about you!” Jonathan said with excitement. “You are so lucky man.”
“Yea I know” replied Ethan. “I just don’t want to screw this up. I’ve been waiting for this for a long time.”
“Hi, Ethan” said Kammie, Ethan’s next door neighbor. “We are playing Parcheesi later and I thought maybe you could come over before band practice today.”
Kammie had had a crush on Ethan as long as Ethan had a crush on Shelley. She had tried every single day of every year to get his attention in the craziest of ways you would never dream possible.
“Uh well, I can’t today Kammie”, Ethan said nicely. “I’m going to hang out at Jonathan’s, right Jonathan?” he said looking over at Jonathan and giving him the ‘just agree with me’ signals.
“Yea, we are going to help my dad out in the garage”, Jonathan thought quickly.
“Oh, ok then, maybe tomorrow?” Kammie questioned.
“Sure, tomorrow it is”, replied Ethan. He felt awful for lying but he knew if he told Kammie where he and Jonathan were headed, she would definitely be there and make his life a living hell. He couldn’t afford any mistakes today.
Jonathan helped him up and the two of them headed home.
Ethan showered, put on his best jeans, his matching Fallen shoes, shirt and hoodie and rushed out the door. He never noticed his little brother Connor and the mountain of macaroni and cheese he had made in the middle of the kitchen table.
“Tell mom and dad I’ll be back at 6,” he said and he bolted out the door.
He ran as fast as he could to Jonathan’s house, three blocks away all the while thoughts of Shelley and her soft, flowing brown hair dancing in his mind. “I have to be COOL he thought. I have to really impress her. This is my one shot.”
Jonathan came out in his usual jeans, hand me down shoes and t-shirt with flannel over shirt on.
“Dude, we really need to work on your wardrobe. What the hell are you wearing?” Ethan laughed as he gave Jonathan the once over.
“Who gives?” replied Jonathan. “It’s not like I’m the one trying to impress her”.
“True” said Ethan and they got into Jonathan’s Volkswagen Scirocco and sped off.
They made it to the mall with 10 minutes to spare. They ordered a couple of sodas and sat at the nearest table to the doors waiting for the girls to arrive.
“I hope Angie isn’t with them”, said Jonathan. “She always starts that whiny voice when I’m around and keeps touching me.”
Jonathan and Angie had dated in 4th grade and Angie had still pined after him all these years. Every Valentine’s she sent him a red rose and a box of candy. It said “anonymous” in the card, but everyone knew who it was.
“Yuck” he said again out loud.
“She’s not that bad” replied Ethan with a laugh.
“Who’s not that bad”? asked Shelley behind him.
“Oh, um, Kammie, she is my freshman neighbor.” Ethan answered startled.
“Oh, ok”, said Shelley.
Ethan checked the group of girls out and to no surprise there stood Angie staring at poor Jonathan with hungry, devouring eyes. He could feel her ready to pounce on him at any minute. Poor Jonathan looked over at Ethan and with his “I’m going to kill you and you owe me BIG time” eyes he glared at Ethan. If eyes were laser beams, Ethan would have been toast.
“Your cheek is swollen, does it hurt?” asked Shelley concerned.
“Nah, I’ll be all right”, replied Ethan. He tried to blow off the fact that it felt like his cheek was the size of a football and as hot as hell.
“Let’s all head to ‘Grill ‘N Thrill’ and get something to eat and play some games.” said Shelley.
They all headed toward the “Grill ‘N Thrill. Ethan noticed Shelley stuck right by his side and he wasn’t sure but their hands knocked into each other once or twice. Was he supposed to hold her hand? Should he grab it? Maybe. Maybe not.
They all got burgers and fries and sat at a table in the corner. Angie made a bee-line to sit next to Jonathan and knocked Samantha, another friend of Shelley’s onto the floor!
“Oh sorry, I’m so clumsy” cried Angie. “I didn’t see you there”.
You could see the pain in Jonathan’s eyes but he just kept smiling.
After some food and table talk, they all split to play various games that the ‘Grill ‘N Thrill had to offer. It was more than just an arcade. The Grill ‘N Thrill had a virtual reality game system and many other challenging participant competition games available for play.
Jonathan, Angie, Samantha and Carrie all scattered throughout the arcade while Ethan and Shelley got onto the virtual coaster together. They shared a seat belt and when the ride started, Shelley screamed with delight and grabbed Ethan’s hand.
He was so nervous his palms were sweaty but he didn’t care. Shelley Perkins was holding HIS hand.
The rest of the day was a blur. Ethan remembered talking to Shelley holding Shelley’s hand and walking but he was so enamored by her that he couldn’t remember one conversation they had. It was 6:45 pm before he snapped back into reality.
“Oh my God, we gotta go” he said to Jonathan. “I was supposed to be home 45 minutes ago.”
“Wait!” Shelley yelled as she ran toward him. “Here is my cell number. Call me later?”
Ethan took the small folded sheet of paper.
“Ok” he said. He was completely lost in her deep, chocolate eyes.
“Come on man!” Jonathan said as he tugged Ethan’s arm. “We got to go”.
They ran out of the mall and headed to Jonathan’s car. But before they could reach it, out stepped Brent, Casey his best friend and 3 other guys Ethan and Jonathan recognized from the football team.
“I thought I told you to stay away from Shelley, Fairchild? I guess you need more than what you got earlier, huh? Brent seethed with anger.
The three other guys stepped forward and Ethan could see a baseball bat, pipe and bottle in their hands. Jonathan grabbed a broken bottle out of the trash can next to them and was ready to rumble when the mall cop pulled up beside all of them.
“Is there a problem here?” he asked.
All the boys answered at once.
“No, no problem at all.”
“No loitering in the parking lots so get a move on, all of you”, he said gruffly.
All the boys turned around to leave and Jonathan disposed of the broken bottle in the trash can.
“This isn’t over Fairchild”, Brent said over his shoulder as he turned to leave.
“Yea, yea” said Ethan to Brent. “I’m not afraid of you Brent. Anytime you’re ready, but not here and not at school.”
Ethan and Jonathan got into Jonathan’s car and sped toward Ethan’s house.
His parents would be home and he was sure to get into trouble. Usually he stays in until his parents get home. He is always responsible for Connor, but not today. Nothing was going to get in the way of seeing Shelley.
As they pulled into the driveway, they could see Mr. Fairchild in the garage tinkering with something.
“Oh boy, he is waiting on me”, said Ethan.
“I hope you don’t get grounded man, we have the 24 ‘Til Death concert this Saturday’” said Jonathan.
“Yea, me too” replied Ethan.
“Good luck man. Call me”, said Jonathan. Then, he pulled away.
Ethan knew he would be in trouble and by now he knew he had a nasty bruise on his cheek from Brent earlier. There would be no way of hiding any of what happened today. He just hoped his dad would let him go to the concert. He had the tickets for two months and 24 was his favorite band.

© 2018 20 Locks - Hustla Extraordinaire

Author's Note

20 Locks - Hustla Extraordinaire
Still being edited! Grow with me.

My Review

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Wow Anastasia! This was so much fun to read! It's like a love triangle between Shelly, Brent and Ethan! I hope to that Ethan's dad let's him go to the concert!

Posted 4 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

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Added on March 26, 2017
Last Updated on May 14, 2018
Tags: Ethan, band, virtualreality, game, xosassystaceox, sassystace, story, book, virtual, ethansnotsoimaginaryvirtualtour, writer, writing, ethans not so imaginary virtual


20 Locks - Hustla Extraordinaire
20 Locks - Hustla Extraordinaire

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Altruistic Enigmatic Polymath | Writer, Poet, Actress, Musician, EMT. I'm an Artist. I paint pictures of the verbal kind. ☯ Stacy Purvis more..