"Okay, here you go."
I took the schedule paper and a welcome card from the sweet secretary. I nodded and smiled an appreciation at her. She then looked over my shoulder and called out to a Steve in a rather high pitch voice. "Can you help your new friend here with her way around to her class?"
"Of course," a boy came beside me, smiling at her and then at me.
"Thanks, honey. So if you need anything, you know where to find me, Rina." She turned back to her computer to continue her work so I followed Steve who nodded in the direction of the hallway, still smiling.
"So you are new."
"Yeah, I just moved from England."
"Cool. Which part?"
"City or United?"
"Oh, you know them? I thought football, I mean soccer, isn't as popular here. I'm United, born and bred." I said with a laugh.
"Figures. Well our football team isn't is umm,.. well isn't that much interested in winning and yeah soccer is kinda more popular in this town actually."
" So you guys have only boys team?"
"There used to be an all-girl team but it didn't quite work out, and there isn't much competition so yeah, only boys team now. Why? You thinking of playing?"
"Umm,.. no. I'm not the athletic type. I'm crazy about it though. "
"Well it's not always about strength when it comes to soccer. Anyways here we." He said as we reached the lockers. ''And yours is … right here."
"Okay thanks." I said and decided to ask him what I've been meaning to ask him the whole time.
"I guess you've been here for long."
"Do you happen to know a Nicole Tyler?"
"Yeah, I do. In fact, we know each other quite well."
Great! At least, I could learn a thing or two about the girl from him.
"Why the sudden query?"
"Yeah, right." He paused, as if waiting for me to say something more."Okay, then."
He said and shrugged.
"I'm Steve. Rodgers."
"Huh? Like the character? From the comics?"
"There you go."
I just couldn't keep a straight face anymore. Trust me, you wouldn't be able to either. Look at the guy. I mean he's like him (I mean like Chris) in looks, more or less, but man, really? Captain America, with a pot belly?
I guess he seems to get that a lot too 'cause he just kept laughing along with me, not looking offended.
"And I'm Rina Haven. It's very nice to meet you, too, Captain." I closed my locker after putting books in it. Now I only have books for the first class in my bag. Yeah I like it light.
"What's your first class, Ma'am?" he said, suddenly capturing the voice.
"Physics, and stop it before Marvel hears it, or they'll cancel the series."
He grinned at my amused expression.
"Alright, alright. And gril. I didn't figure you that way."
"What do you mean?"
"Umm,.. about Nik. You just got here and you're already looking for her. I actually thought I might have had myself a chance there." He said with a fake disappointed look on his face."
I didn't really know what he was saying but just smiled back.
"Here we are."
He said opening the door to the class and holding for me.
"Hey, don't start now."
"And there's your Nicole."
I looked in the direction he nodded and saw a guy tongue-raping a girl. Well not really because she seems to be enjoying it. Really enjoying it. First impression, not impressive. She was clad in quite a sophisticated manner. Truth be told, she barely had on anything. Only a rather revealing tank top and a jeans miniskirt.
Steve seems to have a different class too because he said goodbye and when I turned around to say it back he'd already dashed out, when the bell rang. I took my seat in the second row my eyes still on Nicole who had to cut short her make-out session because the teacher came in.
"Morning, everyone. I see we have a new student here so why don't you introduce yourself to your friends before we start,umm.. Ms .Haven?" she said looking at what I was guessing would be my papers and sitting down at her desk.
I sighed and got up. I'm not a big fun of public speaking. It's only a few dozens of students here, but still.
"Hi, I'm Rina Haven. I'm from England. "
I said standing up but no one was paying attention since Nicole made quite a mess scrambling out of the room. I looked over to the back of the class and saw that guy with her from earlier. His eyes met mine and a smirk formed on his lips, which made me groaned internally.
"How old are you?"
"I'll be 17 in a few months." I said and sat back down, still wondering where she took off. Steve had me think that we had the same class. Well evidently not.
"Okay, class. I hope you will be nice to your new friend. Now where did we leave off last week?"
Whoa, she's cute!!! And that twitch she made with her lips when our eyes met made my lips ache for hers. They looked quite … delicious. And those eyes, you could so easily get lost in those emerald orbs all day and never would want to escape. She looks so elegant and beautiful with that long black hair of hers. And her smooth-looking pale skin just makes her all the more …touchable.
But she looks quite interested in that whatever-her-name-was and she didn't seems to like my BREATH-TAKING smile that I gave her just now. But all that's gonna change soon. Very soon, Rina.
But for now, I gotta get some sleep. Yeah I know this being in a class and all. But I have soccer practice next and physics doesn't interest me that much. Maybe it's the teacher who seems to always be trying to get at me. But I couldn't care less. I have a big day ahead of me. And an exciting one I might add.
I came crashing out of the room, my eyes scanning the area, half-expecting to find the brunette that stole into my dream not a few minutes ago. But I rushed in the direction of lockers, knowing I could easily lose my already confirmed spot on the team if I don't make it to the try-outs in time. I let out a sigh of relief as coach hasn't finished giving his lectures. I was motioned to join in after being given a frown.
"Ok, as usual, no dirty playing , and those who were on the team last year, just because you had a spot last term doesn't you are guaranteed one. And as I've always said, football isn't about ……..".
Coach went on for another five minutes which made me regret my decision to rush here. Now I'm stuck here getting my mind boggled with that broken-record speech he has to give before every game. I could have taken more time looking for her, which brought me back to thinking of the dream I just had of us. Damn, that feeling of looking down into her eyes, having her in my arms, kissing her sweet full lips and …. "
"Taylor, maybe you should take a break and watch from the stands. We are going to practice here." I gave out a nervous chuckle at his sarcastic comment and ran to the centre of the pitch, and waited for the whistle.
I had told Ms. Jones we'd like to try out for her swimming squad, we being Elizabeth and me. Liz and I have become friends in the second period. She's quite friendly, a little too friendly if you ask me.
My thoughts drifted back to Nicole as I walked out of the pool accommodation. She's quite different from what I'd imagined her to be. Maybe this was her way of burying her pain. I kept scanning the area in search for her. I need to find her. I need to talk to her before this whole thing crashes down on her.
And that guy. He unquestionably is a player, and from the looks of it, he's just taking advantage of her vulnerability. One minute he's kissing her with such passion, or lust, and the next he's looking at me intently like I'm some piece of meat.
I nodded to whatever that chatterbox beside me was throwing my way, and grabbed my lunch and waited for her to finish. It wasn't break yet, but there's no class for both of us ftill lunchtime. We then walked out of the cafeteria to the library. I'm not a big fan of cafeterias. And I'm not theirs. And from the looks of it, Elizabeth herself doesn't care where she has her lunch, as long as she has someone to have it together with. As I found out, she's also new here, only a couple weeks earlier than me.
"You wanna hang out after school? There's a nice diner I found a few days ago. You know, just talk and get to know each other better. I have this great feeling that we are gonna be best friends."
By talk, I know she means one-way conversation, me being on the receiving end of it.
"So do I. but I can't today. I have to be somewhere. In fact I have to leave after break."
The smile in her eyes faltered a little as I politely turned down her offer. I wasn't lying about it. I do have to ditch the rest of the day. Besides as much as I don't enjoy getting my ears blown, I do want to hang out with Liz. I want to be friends with her. I haven't had a good one in a long time.
"Maybe I could come with you. If it's not too much trouble."
"Uhh … actually, it's kind of a family thing. You'll get bored before we even get there. I don't want you to get stuck in my normal uninteresting stuff. Besides I've got your number. Maybe I'll call you when I get back. You could bomb my ears all night long if you like."
Her mood lightened and she gave me a sheepish grin, which means she did know that she talked a lot.
"What do you mean I'll get bored. Of course, I'm interested in my friend's life. Alright, then. But you have to call me. I gotta know how your day went. Still I'll call you if you don't anyway. So you like to swim huh? Me too. You know, when I was young, mom would take ……"
The whistle ended the match, and I walked off the pitch to get some water. There's no one in the stands. Coach made sure of it. He doesn't want any distractions. Though this was a try-out session, there weren't many changes in the squad. How ego-boosting it may be to know that I'm still the bad-ass on the pitch, I doubt we're gonna win the championships this year. That is if we make it to the final, which is highly unlikely with this squad. Old players had dropped stamina and new ones aren't that impressive. If we want to win this year, we have to bring some quality to the team. But that's up to the coach.
After we were dismissed, I took a shower and changed. I fixed my hair and looking in the mirror, I grinned with satisfaction at the walking example of hotness standing before me. I headed for the parking lot. Coach has given us a break till after lunch time. I got on my bike and started the engine. Soon as it purred to life, I sped out. I think I'll have a quick nap back home. But I gotta come back here for lunch, a beautiful lunch.
I sat before my father's grave with a few stray tears running down my cheeks. I've been crying for a while now since I got here. Just thinking about it brings about tears I didn't know I still had.
We were a perfect family. Warm, loving, caring for each other, almost never losing sight of one another, especially mom and dad. Dad, he was a respected businessman in his line of work. Not in terms of success, but because of his skills and hard work and also of his integrity and generosity towards the less fortunate. He was content to live with what we had, a non-luxurious life but with a family that understood him and would always be there. We were exactly that for him, mom and me. Mom was a simple housewife who knew nothing of what' going on outside of her kitchen where she would indulge in the anticipation of sound of her husband car pull up in the driveway. I was just a normal kid who was doted on by her loving parents. It was seven years ago when dad got this co-partnership with the owner/president of the company and made a fair amount of money. Well, a little more than fair, which led him to decide on going on a holiday to the States. That was the first ever trip I've gone on with my parents outside the country. It also turned out to be the last.
Our two-week holiday was cut short when dad got in a car accident. But he didn't leave us right away. When we got to the hospital room where he was being treated, he was lying on a plain white bed surrounded by nurses and doctors. I still hoped he could survive this, despite the sight before me, when I saw him smile at mom and me. I sat down beside him while one of the doctors helped my crying mother out of the room to have some words with her. Everyone else also left, letting me have probably the last conversation with my dying father. But he didn't say anything but kept that smile that sent comfort through my body, giving me the knowledge that he'd always be there for me no matter what. He winced when I took hold of his hand but when I let it go, realizing the pain I've inflicted on him, he tried to grab my hand back with such a feeble effort which made me broke into tears yet again. I took his once strong but now bandaged hand in mine, as he tried again to say something. I leant over on his face and listened as he said,"Remember, no matter what, you are always my daughter." I didn't really understand what he meant but nodded to him . But he'd already closed his eyes and sighed heavily. I heard the door oopen and mom came in trembling with a tear-stained face. Dad opened his eyes once again and as she sat down beside me, he turned his gaze to her slowly and gave an encouraging smile before he passed out. The sound that monitor was making got high pitched and I turned to see that the line showing on the screen went flat. The hospital staff burst in and did their work while we watched helplessly,… hopeful that God would bless us with a miracle so that we don't have to witness his untimely departure. But that was it. He never came around. Minutes after minutes which seemed like years on that bench outside the operation room, we sat. Then the doctor came and told us the news we didn't want to have to hear. That he left us forever. On this very day seven years ago.
We buried him here in the States, and went back home. But without the man who provides this family with love for our hearts and food on the table, we broke down, both of us. But mom was worse than me. She became a wreck. She never recovered from the loss of the love of her life. She wouldn't talk to me, she wouldn't talk to anyone for that matter. And when she finally stopped spending day and night crying, she started drinking a lot and staying out late, sometimes never coming home. She didn't seem to realize that she still had family, me. It went on like this for a couple of months before I was put into foster care and I never saw her again. I never got adopted because I was always transferring homes. I was at my sixth orphanage home when I got adopted. But I was kept well because after about two years, somebody started sending some money to make sure that I was kept well. But it did nothing to help m. I got bullied at school. Those kids at the orphanage never liked me because in their eye I was getting things I didn't deserve. I had few friends both at school and at my so-called home. But after over 5 years of emotional suffering, I got to meet my benefactor, Jennifer. And she then decided to take care of me herself. My life has been pretty smooth since then, despite my no-friend-streak in continuation. She was a very nice lady, quite well-off and beautiful, surprisingly single and never married. Well, somebody's loss was my gain because the moment I met her, I felt like I've known her forever. It wasn't certainly because she's been helping me out all those years, but maybe because I needed someone, after so suddenly losing everything I held dear in my life and going through something a 10-year-old girl should never have gone through. But since that day we met and she pulled me into a warm motherly hug and said it was all going to be all right, I couldn't help but felt overjoyed at the thought that once again I had someone who cared for me, and I could care for.
A/N; if you are against same sex relationships, I suggest you don't read on.