Chapter 2

Chapter 2

A Chapter by Stacey Arvans

Chapter Two




      I opened the front door and jumped into the freezing air. I wrapped my jacket tightly around my body, as I started to walk quickly. Even though it was summer, it was always cold in the morning. It was the last day of school. I wasn’t as excited for summer vacation as most teens would be. Then again I wasn’t like most teens either.

      I didn’t have anything planned, like my brother Martin did. His entire summer break he would be doing things with his friends while I sat up in my room reading. It could be a lot worse, but I would like to have something to do. Of course Gracie would try to get me to do a bunch of things this summer. I would hopefully be able to get out of without hurting her feelings.

      It felt like I walked forever before I finally got there. I hurried across the street to the school and opened the heavy door. As I walked down the hall towards my locker I could already see Gracie standing against my locker. It was hard for me not to be a little jealous of her, she was beautiful.

      Gracie was more like my mother than I was. She wore her sunny blond hair curled perfectly and it was always done differently. She always had makeup on when she came to school. I wasn’t sure if I had even seen her without makeup for the last four years. Her makeup made her look much older than fifteen, at least twenty. That was probably why Gracie and my mother got along so well. Sometimes I even felt like my mom wished Gracie was her daughter. She was scanning the hallways. I could tell she was beginning to grow impatient. She bit her lip and looked down at her watch then scanned the hallways again. She spotted me and waved her hands frantically for me to hurry my steady pace.

      When I made my way to her she said, “What took you so long?”

      “I didn’t realize I was going too slow for you, I’m sorry,” I said, “So what is this important news that can’t wait until later?”

      “Guess who asked me out?” she gleamed as I shut my locker.

      I sighed, trying to remember who she hasn’t gone out with at the school, “Um I don’t know Jason again?”

      She laughed, “Uh no, try Danny Miller!”

      “I guess I should have known, you’ve only had a huge crush on him all year,” I said.

      “Yeah, I’m excited about it but nervous,” she sighed. “I was actually hoping you would be able to help me out with something.”

      I looked at her in shock. What could she possibly need my help with? I had never been on a date before in my life. Gracie however, had already dated half the school. It wasn’t like I could do anything to improve her hair or makeup. Now, if she wanted help with school, I could totally understand. I had a feeling though, school was the last thing on Gracie’s mind.

      It was probably weird to others that Gracie and I were best friends because we were nothing alike. She was a pretty, energetic, boy getter. I on the other hand, was a smart, dorky, bookworm. Gracie had never been good at the whole schoolwork thing. She was too busy falling in and out of love to pay attention to anything else. Normally when we tried to do anything that involved school I was the one that did all the work while she talked about her latest failed relationship.

      “Uh, what exactly can I help you with?” I asked.

      “Well, like I said I’m pretty nervous, and I was thinking you can come with us,” she beamed at the idea.

      “No way Gracie, I’m not going on your date to be the third wheel. That is so embarrassing. I can’t believe you would want me to do that anyway, I’ll look so lame. Like, oh this is my best friend Ash Lynn. She can’t get a date so she showed up solo. Hope you don’t mind Danny.”

      “No! You won’t look lame because I wasn’t thinking of a third wheel kind of thing,” she started but I cut her off.

      “What do you mean you weren’t thinking of a third wheel kind of thing? What would you call it if I show up by myself?”

      “Well, you know Danny’s friend Brandon? I thought maybe you two could go together,” she whispered.

      “What?” I yelled. A couple of people turned to see what we were talking about. “You didn’t already talk to him, did you?”

      “I might have mentioned the idea to Danny,” she said looking away from me, “He seemed to think it was a good idea.”

      “Oh my gosh Gracie! I don’t want to go out with Brandon! He is a total nerd and I don’t even like him like that,” I moaned.

      “You act like you are so much better than him. I hate to tell you this, but people think you are a nerd too and besides, he likes you,” she said. “Maybe if you would give him a chance you might like him too.”

      “Wow Gracie, that is really nice for a best friend to say,” I glared at her.

      “Oh come on, you know I didn’t mean anything by it Ash. You know I’m not the one that thinks that. I am just trying to say that maybe you should get out of the house,” she said.

      “Well I might not be better than Brandon but I don’t like him and don’t want to go out with him. I don’t need to go out with him to figure that out either. So you might as well let them know for me that I won’t be there. Seeing that you are the one that let them know I would,” I said walking faster down the hall.

      “Please, please Ash. Do this for me please!” she begged grabbing my arm, “I will do anything for you, please do this one favor for me.”

      “Why should I?” I asked.

      “Because if you don’t then I won’t get to go out with Danny and I’ve wanted to go out with him for so long! I need you to help me please,” she begged.

      I didn’t want to give into Gracie.  I knew that if I didn’t go on this date with Brandon there was a good chance she wouldn’t talk to me for the rest of the summer. Even though I hated all of her plans if she wasn’t talking to me then my summer would really suck. I sighed, I couldn’t believe what I was about to say.    

      “You owe me big time if I do this for you.”

      “So you will then?” she asked in excitement.

      “Yeah I guess I will.” I groaned, “But as friends nothing else. You need to let him know that too.”

      “Thank you so much Ash Lynn! I promise whatever you want,” she said, grabbing me into a bear hug, “And I was thinking I could come over and do your makeup so you look really pretty!”

      I laughed a little, “Yeah I bet you can make me pretty.”

      She sighed, “Shut up Ash! You are pretty, you just need a little polish.”

      “Well I’m going to be late for class so I have to go,” I said rushing down the hall, “Talk to you at lunch okay?”

      “Okay! Talk to you then,” she yelled back to me as I disappeared down the hallway.

      I finally made it to my classroom with only a second to spare. I rushed back to my seat, which happened to be in the back of the classroom. Most people assumed that is where all the bad kids sat. I liked it back there because people didn’t notice me, and the teachers never tried to make me answer questions. Not that I wouldn’t know the answers, but I hated to talk in front of everyone.

       My first couple of classes dragged on, not that it really mattered to me. I wasn’t excited to hear about Gracie’s plans for the weekend. I wasn’t looking forward to discussing the game plan with her at lunch. She seriously annoyed me sometimes. Part of me wished I could be more like her but another part of me wished she could be more like me. I guess if we were too much alike we wouldn’t be friends though. When the bell rang for lunch, I packed my stuff as slowly as I could and walked to the lunchroom.

      When I finally arrived, I looked in our normal spot and saw Gracie sitting at the table. To my surprise, I saw Danny and Brandon sitting across from her. She was waving anxiously at me. I rolled my eyes right before Brandon glanced over and waved at me as well. I smiled back, trying to be as nice as possible. I slowly walked over with my head down, plopping down next to Gracie. I wished I had a way to get out of this lunch, but I was stuck there. I felt as though I was in a war and I was about to surrender my territory.

      Danny and Brandon were like Gracie and me. Most people didn’t understand why Danny (who was cute) would ever hang out with Brandon (who was a total nerd). Danny had dark brown hair and greenish-blue eyes. He was tall and athletically built, and, of course, he played sports. Brandon had dark brown eyes that were almost black, which were hidden behind huge geeky glasses. Even mine weren’t as bad as his. He was also tall, but not in an attractive, strong way. He was lanky and skinny. His light blond hair was always parted to the side, as if his mother brushed his hair each morning. To top everything off, he wore button up shirts, which only add to his nerdy appearance. Oh and he was the president of the science club. I know what everyone is thinking I’m being judgmental but seriously the science club?

      “Oh my gosh Ash I was starting to wonder where you were. What took you so long?” she asked when I sat down.

      “I came at my usual time Gracie.” I glared at her, “Beside I’m not that hungry. I almost feel like I could be sick at any moment.”

      “So how are you doing Ash Lynn?” Brandon asked, a little shy.

      I sighed, “I could always be worse I guess. What about you Brandon?”

      “I’m doing great today,” he smiled at me, “I was actually wondering if you were going to be busy this weekend?”

      “Oh um, I don’t know. I’ll have to check my schedule and see what I’m up too,” I said to him, “I mean, I have a pretty tight schedule.”

      “Uh, okay. I thought,” he stopped and looked at Danny, confused. I held back a smile. He was such a nerd, I couldn’t help myself.

      “She is just kidding, Brandon, she isn’t doing anything this weekend, right Ash?” Gracie said pinching my leg under the table.

      “Ouch,” I groaned, “Well, I guess I don’t have to check my schedule after all.”

      “Ash Lynn has a weird sense of humor,” Gracie glared at me.

      “In that case, I was wondering if you would like to go to the movies with me on Sunday?” Brandon asked, with a smile.

      I sighed, “Yeah I guess so.”

      “Great! I bet we are going to have a lot of fun,” Brandon said, “I’m really looking forward to see this movie with you.”

      “Oh, I bet it is going to be a blast. I can just see it now.” I groaned.

      “Great I bet we are all going to have a blast,” Gracie smiled at me.

      Lunch dragged on especially because I didn’t want to be there. Everyone at the table was involved in a big conversation that I’m sure I should have been involved in. I was too busy trying to think of a way to get out of this weekend. Everyone knew I wasn’t going to have anything planned with anyone else. Even if I was deathly sick Gracie would drag me to the movies with them. I was screwed. Finally, the bell rang to go to class. I jumped out of my seat and made it to the lunchroom doors before Gracie finally caught up with me.

      “Where are you off to so fast?” Gracie said, chasing after me.

      “I was almost late for class earlier and I don’t want to be late this time,” I said.

      “Ash Lynn it is the last day of school. No one really cares if you are late,” Gracie said.

      “Maybe you don’t care, but I do.”

      “Why did you give Brandon such a hard time? He is already nervous,” Gracie noted.

      I groaned, “Well, like I already told you, I don’t want to do this.”

      “It’s one night, I promise.”

      I glanced back and Brandon smiled at me. I knew he wasn’t thinking it would only be one night. I didn’t want him to think there was a chance I liked him, but there was no way out now. I was sure Gracie wasn’t actually going to tell him I didn’t. We walked in silence to our last class. I didn’t feel like talking to Gracie at the moment. All through class she gushed about how excited she was for her date, which made me even madder.

      I never thought that my first date would possibly be this upsetting. Then again I never imagined going on a first date. I knew most boys saw me as the smart nerdy girl that had straight A’s in school. That was the way it had always been. I remember last year when Gracie tried to convince me that one of our friends liked me.

      It was embarrassing because I started to think she might be right, his name was Mark. He was in the same grade as us and she was convinced that he liked me more than a friend. I tried telling her that he didn’t, but she said that he was just shy. I didn’t want to ask him out and take the chance that it would ruin our friendship. I really wanted a boyfriend but I knew that our friendship was more important.

      “Come on Ash, Mark definitely likes you. Just go ask him to go to the movies or something,” she said.

      “No he doesn’t Gracie, if he did why hasn’t he asked me out?” I asked her.

      “He must be shy,” she said.

      “No he isn’t Gracie you know that,” I said

      “You are going to have to ask him out,” Gracie said, “Just trust me Ash.”

      “No Gracie, I don’t want to ask him out. He likes me as a friend,” I said as we made our way into the class room.

      We were still arguing when Mark came in and sat down at the desk next to mine. I glared at Gracie and shook my head no. I looked over at Mark and he smiled at me. I smiled back and looked down at my homework assignment. I tried to fake like I was looking over my answers. I could feel Gracie’s eyes on me and I knew that she wasn’t going to let it go. She never let anything go and she always thought she was right. If she wasn’t my best friend I would have hated her for sure.

      “That homework last night was pretty tough,” Mark said looking over my answers as well. His face was closer to mine than I was use too.

      I backed up a little, “It wasn’t that bad.”

      “Of course you didn’t think it was bad. You’re so smart,” he smiled sitting back in his seat.

      “Well if you need help I can help you,” I said pushing my glasses up my nose.

      “You finished all of it?” he asked.

      I smiled at him, “Do you really have to ask me that?”

      He laughed, “Yeah you have always been really smart. I remember in the sixth grade I would always copy off you test in Science.”

      “Yeah I remember when you got caught too. The teacher had to rearrange the seating chart because of you,” I laughed.

      “Hey Mark, Ash and I were going to go to her house tonight to study. Do you want to come over and help us?” Gracie said.

       “Uh I don’t really see Ash Lynn needing help with school work, but I have nothing better to do so sure,” Mark said winking at me, “I’ll come over.”

      That night waiting for Mark, I felt like Gracie might have been right. He winked at me that must have meant something right? Gracie kept telling me that she knew he like me and that tonight I would finally have my first boyfriend. I felt nervous when I heard the knock on the door. Gracie went up to my room, and I went to answer the door. Mark walked in with his backpack and smiled at me. I guided us into the living room Mark sat down. I sat next to him and started to unload my books from my bag.

      “Alright so what did you want to start on, Math? Or do you want to do some English first?” I asked.

      “Hey I thought Gracie was going to be here too,” he said not unpacking his bag.

      “Oh yeah, she had to canceled, so it looks like it is just going to be us,” I smiled, “I hope that’s okay?”

      “Uh, I don’t want to be rude Ash but I only came over because I thought Gracie was going to be here. I think she is really hot, and I was finally going to ask her out tonight,” he said, standing up.

      “Of course you like Gracie. I should have guessed that because everyone likes her,” I said, packing up my books.

      “I’m really sorry Ash, it’s not like you really need a study buddy anyway,” Mark said.

       “You’re right I don’t need your help with school,” I said.

      “Now I feel like a jerk,” Mark said, “Ash, you didn’t think I liked you, did you?”

      “Nope, that never crossed my mind. I’m not stupid Mark, I just thought you came over here to study,” I said, “I’m sure you can show yourself out right?”

      “Uh, sure I guess.”

      I stormed upstairs to my room and threw open the door. Gracie was sitting on my bed painting her toe nails. She looked up and smiled at me. It quickly faded as I slammed the door and she jumped. As I sat down on the bed she capped the fingernail polish and put it on my nightstand.     

      “What the heck happened Ash?” Gracie asked.

      “He likes you.”

      “Wait what do you mean he likes me?” she asked.

      “That’s exactly what I mean Gracie. Mark likes you, that’s the only reason he came over here. He wanted to ask you out,” I said.

      “What a jerk, I am so sorry Ash,” she said. “I really thought he like you.”

      “Yeah well, I tried to tell you he didn’t,” I said.

      “His loss, any guy that doesn’t like you is an idiot. You are going to be the perfect girlfriend,” Gracie said.

      “Ugh! No one is ever going to like me. I’m such an idiot to even think Mark liked me,” I sighed. I felt so embarrassed to even think that a guy would ever like me. I was just a dork and Gracie was beautiful.

      I shook my head, and tried to refocus on the present. Mark was in the past and that was last year. It didn’t make me want to go out with Brandon still. Thinking about Mark made me realize, I should make the best of any opportunity that I was given. I was sure that a lot of girls probably went on practice dates and that’s what I would think of Brandon as.


© 2013 Stacey Arvans

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Added on April 6, 2013
Last Updated on April 6, 2013
Tags: boyfriend, teen, teen drama, friends, girls, young-adult