Chapter 2

Chapter 2

A Chapter by Amund Schofield

Rory looks for a job.

"Mom?" Rory shouted into his home. His house was a simple two level Conch style house. His parents had it re-painted recently in a light yellow and blue trim. The yard was small, and the only parking available was on the street. The inside was sparsely decorated, save for the multitudes of family photos on the walls. 
"Rory, get in the living room now!" Rory and Rose jumped at his Father's booming voice.
"Honey, don't be scared. I'm here," Rose comforted Rory seeing that his color had drained once again.
"Okmaybeyoubeinghereisn'tsuchagoodidea," Rory blurted out, looking at Rose's attire.
"Look, I can handle parents," she said pushing Rory forward.
Rory tried to protest, but Rose pushed onward and into the living room. Rory made a squeak that was meant to be a greeting, where as Rose waved with a smile. Mrs. Gebel wore a button up pink shirt, and white khakis. Her light blonde hair was styled not dissimilar from Marilyn Monroe. Rory obviously got his eyes from Mrs. Gebel. Rory's Father wore a black dress vest, white button up shirt and dress pants. His red hair was neatly trimmed, close to the scalp.
"Who is this?" his Father growled, He laid there, the burning blanketing his skin. This was the work of the sun he had worshipped days, maybe weeks, ago. He had been there so long he lost all reasoning of time. This god, this provider had been slowly destroying him. Was this a mercy killing, or was it just laughing at his destruction?
As a boy, he ran in its warm embrace, laughing. Laughing evolved into loving as he came of age. Pain of the heart took hold of him as he remembered Her, the one who first knew of him, and his strength. He remembered the touch of her lips as he left the village. His heart sank low as he remembered the promise. He said, with the utmost confidence, that he would return. He knew now that he would only see her again in the veil. The painful tears burned as they fell. Eventually his pain sent him into the darkness.
Cawing of the scavenger woke him. He looked into its eyes and saw vulture's pity. This creature, a devourer of the dead, had sympathy for the mighty warrior. The bird nodded and took flight. The scavenger would not eat him, not for the sacrifice he was making.  He knew this sacrifice was necessary, and would have gladly ripped his heart out. This death, this slow wasting was a greater pain then he could have imagined. Eventually the warrior fell back into his dreams, back into her arms.
Once again, the burning woke him. Once again, he could not flail as he wished, he could not scream as he wished. He could only lay there, crying as he waited for the end. It would not come quickly. No, the tree, the life source needed his pain. It was its source. This was the greatest betrayal of all. This mockery, this sadism from his life giver dug deep into him.
He watched as the bare limbs sprouted in light green buds. His pain, his dreams and his very soul was the source for these babes. He prayed to the tree that his pain, his suffering would be enough to sate its hunger. He fell back into the darkness one last time, knowing that he had not given enough. He could not have. He was only a man. looking at Rose. 
Rose looked at Rory, and seeing that he couldn't give an answer she started speaking. "Hi Mr. Gebel, I'm Rose Langwell. I believe you know my dad, Dave Langwell?" Rose said extending her hand to Mr. Gebel.
"Yes, I do," Mr. Gebel said sternly, accepting the handshake. "He's a good man, speaks highly of you."
"Well, I do my best," Rose curtseyed.
"So why did my son ditch all of his classes?" Mr. Gebel growled.
"I.. I.." Rory started to speak. Rose smiled encouragingly. "I left with her," He spoke slowly, "because, I didn't want to attend the assembly."
Mr. Gebel let his son take a breath, then he continued his chastising. He threatened Rory with grounding, taking away computer privileges and so on. Rose stood there smiling at her new friend, trying to mentally give him strength. Then after Mr. Gebel ran out of thoughts he told Rory to go to his room, and for Rose to leave.
"Mr. Gebel?" Rose looked at him. "You do realize that the Principal was just going to tell the school to pity your son?" Mr. Gebel looked at Rose. "I mean, he just got out of the psych ward. Is it really the best thing for him to be put on a podium for everyone to see?"
Mr. Gebel's brow furrowed as he mulled over what Rose had said. "Rory, you're only grounded for tonight," He told his son. "Now, Ms. Langwell, please leave my home."
Rose smiled at Rory, who simply stood in awe. Not wanting to push her luck, Rose quickly exited the home. Rory looked at his parents, then quickly bounded up the steps and into his room. Putting the cd and player on his desk, he fell into his bed. 
A poster of Wonder Woman was framed and hung on the wall above his bed. He had an antique bookshelf his Aunt Gloria gave him for Christmas. It held his expansive collection of comics, and a variety of the classic novels. He owned a modest laptop that sat on his desk. It would allow him to access the internet, check email and listen to music. He thought about using the laptop to send Rose a friend request over Facebook, then he remembered he was grounded for the day. Turning he fell into a doldrum-induced sleep.
A few hours later, Rory woke to his Mother's shaking. She sat on the edge of the bed smiling warmly. "Pumpkin, its time to get up," his Mother said sweetly.
"Hey Ma, time for dinner?" Rory yawned.
"Yes." Mrs. Gebel smiled. "Did Rose get you those?"
"The CD and player?"
"No, it was her ex-boyfriend." Rory explained looking at them.
"Her ex?"
"Yeah, his name is Mike." Rory smiled at the name.
"He and Rose are still friends then?" Mrs. Gebel asked, perplexed.
"Yeah, they broke up. They're still really close though."
"Interesting. So why didn't you open it?" she asked.
"Well, I'm grounded," Rory explained.
His mother laughed. "What your parents don't know won't hurt them."
"MOM!" Rory shouted.
"Come on, let's go eat." She said pulling him down to dinner.
Mrs. Gebel had prepared medium-well done steaks, mashed potatoes and collared greens. Rory ate his favorite foods with fervor. His Father interrogated Rory about what he had done in between bites. Rory explained everything that happened, leaving out his confession to Rose.  He wasn't ready to tell his parents. He wasn't sure if they would accept him. After clearing his plate, Rory asked to be excused and went back to his room.
Looking at the CD player and Pat Benatar's Greatest Hits, he remember what his mom told him. He tore through the plastic casing using his incisors. Freeing the CD from it's case, he put it into the player, shoved the headphones on and pressed play. After waiting for a few moments nothing happened. Turning the player over, he realized it would need batteries. His excitement deflated and he fell back onto his bed. He put the player down and made a mental note to get batteries from either Rose or his parents tomorrow.
Laying down, Rory noticed the laptop, quietly sitting on his desk. He stared at it for a few moments. Moving to his desk, he turned the computer on, waiting for it to boot up. Opening the player, he freed the CD and slid it into the machine. Seconds later, the laptop's media player opened and played the CD. He then took the headphones and used them, so as to not alert his parents.
As he listened to "Heartbreaker" he remembered how Mark moved with the music. Instantly he felt his cheeks get hot as he thought about Mike. He imagined walking up to him alone in the store. He would be standing behind the counter, and the two would get into a debate about rock stars. Eventually Mike would sweep him up in his arms and ask him to be his boyfriend. The more Rory thought about it, the more he was sure it would happen.
After he stopped fantasizing, he opened the web browser. Typing Facebook into the URL, he was taken to his personal page. Most of the people who sent him friend requests were family members. There were a few he had met through various comic book based web sites, though the family members still outnumbered them by a large margin. After looking around he saw he had a friend request. He was only slightly disappointed when it wasn't Mike, though Rose was a very close second.
Accepting the request, he got an instant message from her. Rory explained to Rose what happened after she had left. 

Rose: So you're mom and dad are ok with us hanging then?
Rory: As far as I know.
Rose: awesome possum.
Rory: ?
Rose: just a lil' somethin I use on the netz.
Rory: Cool. So about tomorrow.
Rose: What is it?
Rory: What should I be prepared for?
Rose: School?
Rory: You know what I mean. I want to know if I should know anything about your friends.
Rose: don dress preppy lik you did today and u'll be fine.
Rory: Oh, cool.
Rory: So the CD player needs batteries.
Rose: S**T!
Rory: It's cool, I'll just get some from my parents tomorrow morning.
Rose: Nuh uh! U're getting them from meh!
Rory: Ok, thank you.
Rose: Nah, it ain't a problem
Rory: So, is there a possibility of me meeting someone?
Rose: u mean nother gay guy?
Rory: Yeah.
Rose: Sorry Only 1 I know is mike, and I think hes taken

Rory's heart sank as his fantasy melted away. He sat there staring at the screen. Mike was taken.

Rose: u go afk?
Rory: afk?
Rose: away from keyboard?
Rory: No. I just heard my parents talking about me.
Rose: do I hav ta beat them up?
Rory: No. It was just about college.
Rose: Allright man, Imma log seeyah!

With that, Rose went offline. Rory scrolled up the chat log. "I think hes taken", four little words was all it took to cause pain. It was different than any other pain he had had before. It was a special kind of pain. Ejecting the CD he put it in its case and shut the laptop down. He went back to bed and slept through to the alarm clock's seven-thirty siren.
Awaking from his slumber, he realized he hadn't changed out of his clothing or taken a shower. Deciding one day without a shower wasn't the worst thing, he grabbed a black shirt and pants to change into. On his way to the bathroom he heard his parents talking in hushed tones. Confident it was just concerned chatter about him, he ignored the two and continued his morning routine like nothing had happened. On his way to the front door he took a chance to listen in.
"You really think that Rose girl is a good influence on him?" his Mother whispered.
"Yes. Her father is a well respected business man. If half of what this man says is true, she will be the best friend Rory will ever have," retorted Mr. Gebel.
"Honey, I just don't want them dating."
"Who says they're dating?"
"I just don't want them to date." Rory rolled his eyes at his mothers comment.
Arriving at the bus stop, the four other kids stared at him again. The girl, Amanda, smiled weekly at him. The pity wasn't something he wanted, but he smiled back out of kindness. Amanda started to talk about the weather. The bus mercifully was early for Rory, and the conversation was cut short. Plenty of seats were open for Rory, seeing as this was one of the earliest stops. Sitting quietly in the back, Rory watched as Willowhunt passed him by.
An hour later the bus came to Willowhunt High, an imposing brick and mortar building. The color of the school was the same of the gray brick. The mascot was the Willowhunt Witch. Rory laughed a the mascot for the first time, realizing the absurdity. Going through the motions, Rory found his way to the library.
"Hey!" Rose said sitting in his usual spot, paper in her lap.
"How long have you been standing there?" Rory asked looking at her.
"No idea," She admitted. "Well, here's your safety net." Rose handed him the paper.
"Safety net?" Rory asked accepting the paper.
"Well, it's what you read everyday, right?" Rose folded her arm, cocking her head to the side.
"Have you been spying on me?"
"No. I just come in once in a while to return a book. Each time I've seen you there, reading the paper." She point at the one Rory held.
"Oh. I suppose I have been a monotonous." Rory sighed.
"Well, it's time for a change." Rose chimed. She took Rory by the hand and led him to the cafeteria. Rose and her friends had a table in the far back corner. Reaching the table, Rose introduce Rory. While greeting everyone, Rory counted seven at the table; five boys and two girls.
Rory spent the morning free time getting to know the group. They accepted him without question, though the teased him for being so formal. When the subject of music came up, everyone was telling him what bands to check out. After a few moments he reached into his backpack and grabbed a pen and paper to write the suggestions down. Then one of the boys asked for his gamertag.
"Gamertag?" Rory asked perplexed.
"You do know what a gamertag is right?" the boy, Anthony asked.
"No?" Rory said shyly.
"He didn't even know who Pat Benatar was yesterday," Rose explained.
"Oh..." Anthony started laughing uncontrollably. James, the boy next to him, forcefully elbowed Anthony. "What?" Anthony then saw the look on Rose's face. "Oh... ummm."
"A gamertag is your ID, for when you play Xbox or PS3," James explained with a smile.
"Ah... never had one." Rory looked at his food. "I have my laptop though."
"Yeah? What games do you play?" Anthony asked him, taking another bite of his pancakes.
"I play a couple free flash games. I don't have money, so I can't really play any MMO's." Rory explained.
"Oh, well you could always get a job at The Calf." Anthony suggested.
"I may just do that." Rory smiled.
"I would check with Mike, hey may need some extra hands," Rose suggested with a wink at Rory.
"Yeah... I'll do that then." Rory looked at Rose with a confused face. She just giggled.
After getting settled into his first class, the phone rang. Mrs. Relin, the English teacher said Rory had been called to the principal's office. Visibly shaking Rory gathered his things and went to the main office. Rose was leaning back in a chair. She said hi to Rory when he arrived. Then the secretary said that Mrs. Barin was ready to see the duo.
The two sat in front of her. Rose had her usual confidence, where as Rory was ready to break down. Mrs. Barin sat behind her massive desk, her large brown eyes examining the duo. "You two should be in a lot of trouble," Mrs. Barin stated, looking at Rory. "I was going to expel you both, but your parents have convinced me otherwise." Rory looked at Rose pleading for her to work her magic. "Seeing as it's Friday, you two will start serving a week's detention next week. Is that clear Ms. Langwell?" She said staring at Rose.
"Of course, Mrs. Barin." Rose said leaning back.
"Is that clear Mr. Gebel?"
"Ye...yes ma'am," Rory stuttered.
"Good." the principal smiled. "Dismissed the both of you." She waved them off with a brush of her hand.
Rose gave a Rory a hug before the two went back to their respective classes. Rory couldn't think about anything but the next week. He quietly wished he could take it all back. Then he wished he could take the wish back. Wishing turned in a vicious cycle that continued through to the end of the day.
Rose was waiting at the front door. "Where were you during lunch?" Rose asked with her arm crossed.
"I... I went back to the library." Rory saw the disappointment in Rose. "Sorry, the principal... detention..."
"Rory are you ok?" Rose put her hand on his shoulder.
"Yeah... I... just..." he gasped for breath.
"Oh god. You're having a panic attack!" Rose hollered. "Look at me!" Rose forced Rory to look her in the eyes. "Follow my breathing. Focus on it." She commanded. Rory breathed with Rose, in and out until his heart stopped racing.
"Thank you."
"No problem." Rose smiled. "You wanna come with me to the Record store?"
"Yeah," Rory smiled. Then he remembered Mike was with somebody. "Do we have to?"
"No, but I thought you might want to go see if Mike was hiring?" Rose said, giving Rory a strange look.
"Oh yeah. Well, can we also pick up an app at..." 
"The Calf?" Rose reminded him.
"You probably won't need it. I'm sure Mike will hire you. It will probably only be like fifty dollars a week, but its better then nothing." Rose lead the way to her car.
"Yeah, it would be cool. I mean, I could start playing World of Warcraft," Rory said remembering one of the boys had a t-shirt of it.
"It's called WoW, and yeah you could. Why would you though?" She asked looking at him with a puzzled look.
"You kill monsters while talking to people. It's fun." Rory explained.
"Well, just as long as you don't start slacking, you can play it all you want." 
"You're my mother now?"
"When it comes to helping you avoid bad influences, yeah!" Rose said opening the doors to her Mustang.
"What bad influences?"
"I love my friends, but they're a bunch of slackers." Rose said annoyed as they entered the car. After Rory was buckled in, she started the engine. "Alright, off to Mike's."
After fifteen minutes of driving Rose had them at the Record store. There were a lot of customers inside. Rose smiled when Rory lead her into the store. Mike was behind the counter checking a few customers out. He was doing three at a time, money flew in and out of the cash register at lightning speed. Rose and Rory went down the aisles looking at CDs. Rose picked out a few, while Rory just continued to browse. After the rush died down the duo walked up to the counter.
"What are you two demons up to?" Mike beamed.
"Well... I was kind of hoping you were looking to hire." Rory said to Mike.
Mike was about to say something when Rose gave him a deadly stare. "Well... I guess I could use someone. I mean, I can't pay much at all. You would get like seven hours a week at most." Mike explained.
"That's good for him!" Rose chimed.
"Yeah, that's all I really need." Rory said, staring at Mike's smile.
"Well, you'll need to fill out a W-2, but other then that we're good to go." Mike explained, giving Rose a dirty look.
"Cool." Rory said, imagining him and Mike together.
"So, Mike you still with that guy... Todd?" Rose asked sitting on the counter, handing her stack of CDs to Mike.
"We broke up a month ago. It'll be eighty five, ninety five." Mike said.
Rory's smile got wider, and Rose took special notice. She handed Mike a hundred dollar bill. "I could have sworn you said he was the one." Rose teased Mike.
"You know I say that about every guy. I swear, I fall way too fast," Mike said handing Rose her change. "Rory, you get here tomorrow at around nine, and I'll have the paperwork for you to fill out."
"All right, I'll have him here tomorrow," Rose said hopping of the counter.
"You like him!" Rose jumped on Rory after they got in the car.
"I do not!" Rory shot back.
"Yes you do!" She persisted.
"I... I... I..." Rory gasped for air.
"Oh god..." Rose slapped him out of his second panic attack. "Seriously dude, I was just teasing."
"I know, I just can't handle it yet." Rory looked away.
"You do like him though." Rose added as she turned the key.
"I... I think I do," Rory smiled at Rose.
"He's twenty one. He can buy you booze!" Rose laughed.
"Oh god, I'm so not ready to get drunk."
"I figured as much... would your parents have a problem with him being twenty one? I mean you're only sixteen." Rose asked with concern.
"Well, they'll have to deal with the gay thing. Beside's I'm almost Seventeen." Rory sighed. "Do you think I have a chance?"
"Yes, yes I do," Rose said, pulling out of the parking lot.

© 2011 Amund Schofield

Author's Note

Amund Schofield
As always, be as much of a grammar nazi as you wish. Also, I want you to pay attention to the dialogue of Rose and Rory. Are their voices clear? Is each sentence clearly belonging to that character?

My Review

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Hurrah for a new chapter! The descriptions are better now. The one for Rory's house and room adequately painted a picture in my mind. To answer your question about if Rory's and Rose's voices are clear, I think they might be. I'm not really good at analyzing that because I think I kind of struggle with it myself, but I picture two different people talking with their own voices, so I guess that must be a good thing.

Now for some grammar stuff:

"Who is this?" his Father growled looking at Rose.
There should be a comma after "growled." Also, father should be lowercase. The only time father is capitalized is when someone is talking and referring to their own dad. For example, "Father made me eat my spinach." But when you put a possessive pronoun in front of "father," then father becomes lowercase. For example, "My father made me eat my spinach." The same goes for mother, too. You did this in other places in the chapter.

"I.. I.." Rory started to speak. Rose smiled encouragingly. "I left with her," He spoke slowly, "because, I didn't want to attend the assembly."
I was going to say that you don't need the "he spoke" part, but I saw the "slowly," so I guess it's okay. The "he" should be lowercase, though.

"Rory, you're only grounded for tonight." He told his son. "Now, Ms. Langwell, please leave my home."
There should be a comma after "tonight," not a period, and "he" should be lowercase. When you have a phrase like "he told" or "he said" after a line of dialogue, you ALWAYS end that dialogue with a comma if you aren't using an explanation point or a question mark.

A poster of Wonder Woman was framed and hung on the wall above his bed.
He had an antique bookshelf his Aunt Gloria gave him for Christmas. It held his expansive collection of comics, and a variety of the classic novels. He had a laptop, it was a modest one that would allow him to browse the web, check e-mail and watch videos.
The first sentence isn't originally part of this paragraph, but I think it should be since it seems to relate better with this paragraph rather than the one it's in currently. Also, you say he has a laptop, but where is it sitting? You don't exactly mention that. I mean, I guess it's kind of a given that it might be on a desk, but it'll still be nice to have the description. Also, the comma after "laptop" is wrong. I think putting a semicolon in its place should fix that.

"Interesting. So why didn't you open it?" She asked.
"Well, I'm grounded." Rory explained.
The "she" should be lowercase. It's like when you use a comma to end a line of dialogue: unless the word after it is a proper noun, it's going to be lowercase. Also, it should be a comma after "grounded," not a period.

After freeing the CD from it's case, he put it into the player, shoved the headphones on and pressed play. After waiting for a few moments nothing happened.
There should be a comma after "moments." Also, the way these two sentences begin is the same. That creates a repetition that's probably going to stick out to some, if not all, readers. That's something you don't want, so you might want to revise one of these sentences to get rid of that repetition of beginning with "after."

Laying down his eyes saw his laptop, quietly sitting on his desk.
There should be a comma after "down," but this sentence is wrong. The subject after "laying down" is "his eyes," which means that "his eyes" are laying down. I don't think that's possible. You'll need to revise this sentence so that Rory is the one that's laying down.

Moving to his desk, he turned the computer on, waiting for it to boot up. Opening the player, he freed the CD and slid it into the machine.
Nothing grammatically wrong here, but I wanted to point out this sentence pattern. You use this sentence structure WAY too much. I think you've been reading that quarterback story a little too much, because I'm betting that you got this sentence structure from there since the author of that story happens to use it too much also. It's okay to use this sentence structure every so often, but when you use it too much, it begins to stick out, and that's something you don't want, so you'll need to revise some of the sentences that are structured like this to keep the repetition down to a low number.

With that Rose went offline. Rory scrolled up the chat log. "I think hes taken", four little words was all it took to cause pain. It was different then any other pain he had, had before.
Before I focus on the grammar aspect, I want to say that I liked this little passage. It's simple, yet it captures Rory's feelings pretty well, I think. At least, I was able to feel what he was feeling, but then again, I'm sure anyone who has been in the same situation can. As for grammar, you need a comma after "with that," and there shouldn't be a comma between the two hads. Also, the comma after the quotation should be a period, and the period should go inside the quotation marks. Finally, "then" should be "than." Than is for comparison, so that's the word you want in this situation. I think you made this mistake a couple of other times in the chapter.

"I just don't want them to date," Rory rolled his eyes at his mothers comment.
The comma after "date" should be a period.

The color of the school was the same of the brick, gray.
I think the comma after "brick" should be a colon.

"No idea." She admitted. "Well, here's your safety net." she said handing him the paper.
"Safety net?" He asked accepting the paper.
There should be a comma after "idea." Also, since the first paragraph of dialogue obviously belongs to Rose, you don't need the "she said" at the end. Get rid of that and change it to "She handed him the paper," or something along those lines. The "he" in front of "asked" should be lowercase.

"Well, its what you read everyday, right?" Rose folded her arm, cocking her head to the side.
"Its" should be "it's." Its is possessive. It's is "it is." I don't think the it is owning "what," so you want "it's."

She took Rory by the hand and lead him to the cafeteria.
"Lead" should be "led." The past tense of "lead" is "led."

"Yeah... I'll do that then," Rory looked at Rose with a confused face.
The comma after "then" should be a period.

Rose was leaning back in a chair, she said hi to Rory when he arrived.
These are two main clauses, so the comma separating them should be a period.

Rose helped Rory reach a calm.
Nothing grammatically wrong here, but I kind of dislike how you just flat out state it. Maybe show us instead? Showing is a writer's best friend. It'll give some nice detail here.

"All right, I'll have him here tomorrow," Rose said hopping of the counter.
I think you meant "off."

"He's twenty one, he can buy you booze!" Rose laughed.
The comma after "one" should be a period.

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Added on May 4, 2011
Last Updated on May 7, 2011
Tags: rory, rose, boy, man, gay, romance, high school, highschool, love, lgbt, goth, funny, angst


Amund Schofield
Amund Schofield

Redwood Falls, MN

I like to write. more..