Chemistry and Belonging
Book by: AgainTheShyGirl
Today's the day! Starting at my very new school. I'm so nervous about going. It would've been fine if I changed schools in the same country but, nooo! My parents had to go that one step further.
Moving overseas was the part that made me get butterflies in my stomach. We arrived in America yesterday morning. So my nights are my days and my days are my nights. Sounds fun, right? It isn't, trust me. I didn't get any sleep last night so I going to be walking around the school like a undead mummy, today. Great!
I decided to walk down the stairs and have breakfast. At the -very large – table sat my dad and mum – sitting at opposite ends of the tables - eating there food like there was running late for work – which they weren't. They stood and left. Not even with a backwards glance. Sigh.
Lucinda -the housekeeper- brought over my breakfast and placed it in front of me. “Good sleep?” she asked.
“I wished.” I looked down at my food. “Thanks, Lucinda. How am I getting to school today?” I asked.
“I'll take you today. As well as pick you up. But tomorrow and the rest of the school year you will be catching the bus,” she said taking my parents dirty dishes, wiping down their spots then putting their dishes into the dishwasher.
“Thanks.” I ate my breakfast in silence. Hardly eating anything. Not giving Lucinda's food any justice.
“Not hungry, Alexis?” she said smiling. She knew I hated to be called that. She only called me that to tease. So that why I call her Lucinda instead of Luce - her preference.
“I guess I am just nervous about today,” I said giving a small smile.
“Come on, you will be fine. You just need to get use to the school and everything. You'll also look much better if you slept more. Then we might see a guy around here soon.”
“What?” she asked innocently.
“One – I've only been here not even twenty-four hours. Two – I don't need a boyfriend right now or any time soon for that matter,” I said getting up and grabbing my (very heavy) school bag.
“Why not?” she said pulling her keys out of her pocket – she drove a white van that had a sticker on it saying “Cleaning Rules!”
“I don't really need a boyfriend to be complete. I need to study, to catch up on what I've missed so far this year plus I need to unpack the house and to set it up. I also need to get use to the neighbour,” I said while I walked out to the van and got in. Lucinda got in the van and put her seatbelt on, I didn't the same. Then the van started and we were driving off to school.
“Your a beautiful young women that is sixteen and you need a man looking after you. But what you need more that a boyfriend is a life,” she said stopping at the lights.
I chocked out, “What?!”
“Your young. You need to live, boys, party and more boys. When I was your age I had boys coming at me from all sides. I even had to carry a bat around from the age of fifteen to thirty-six,” sigh, “Those were the best years of my life. Then I met Ricardo.”
“What happened?” I asked, I was starting to get engrossed into her story.
“Alexis, what do you suppose happened? He cheated on me with a big boobed hooker five years ago.”
“I'm sorry, Lucinda, I had no idea,” patting her shoulder.
“I know. Don't worry about it, Alexis. Hang on, we are suppose to be talking about your life, boys and more boys!” Luckily just then the school came into view.
“Okay, Lucinda. Drop me off here. I can walk now,” I said getting ready to jump out of the van when it stopped.
“Okay, but we will talk about it later. I've known you for all about twenty-four hours but I see straight though your fake smile, Alexis.”
“Thanks, Lucinda. See you when school finishes,” I said getting out of the van we it stopped. I slammed the door and walked towards the school. Luckily I didn't hear or see Lucinda again.
So I slowly walked towards the school. Though it was about an hour to school started there was heaps of people in the front yard. I could see all the different cliques
Emos, Cheerleaders, Jocks – 'Jerks', Nerds, Drama, Popular, Sporty and then the Invisibles. I didn't really have a clique but if it had to be one it would be the Invisibles. But here I would have no idea. I couldn't see me going into the Popular group or even the Sporty group. Maybe the Nerd or Invisibles here.
The only person I ever call my friend at home was Lisa. Lisa was the friend that didn't care if you were popular or not she still talked to you. So when we were in primary school we couldn't be pulled apart but once high school started everything changed. Lisa hang out with me less and less each week until it became only one or two lunches she sat with me. Lets just say that Lisa liked to party and I like to study. Lisa dressed to show off her body and I dressed to hide mine.
But here I am walking though the school yard of my new school and its like a nightmare. A living nightmare that my parents did to me. I was sooo close to moving in with Lisa. I could even afford to pay to stay there – with me having a job and everything. But my parents forced me to come.
I grabbed the map out of my bag of the school but after a couple minutes looking at the paper I couldn't tell anything from it. All it looked like was rectangles, squares and words all mixed into each other. But I decided to try anyway. So I decided to look around the school. I turned to my left -
And bumped into someone. Throwing books everywhere.
“I'm so sorry,” I rushed out. I bent down and picked up a few books up.
“It's okay,” said a deep voice. I took my eyes off the pile of books I had gathered off the ground to look up and saw hottest guy I've ever seen. Well, I've never seen a guy like this before, so I wont go to far to say that hottest cause he is the number one 'hot' guy I've ever saw.
Dark brown eyes that almost consumed the whites of his eyes. Brown hair that had blonde streaks in it, tan skin and a body that said, “I worked hard to look this good!”
We stood up and I handed him back his books. I know my face was like a tomato. “I'm so sorry.” I didn't know what else to say except that.
He laughed. “Its okay. I have too much stuff and wasn't looking where I was going... I'm Lincoln by the way,” he said putting his books down and holding out his hand. I took it.
“Nice to meet you, Alex.” he smiled. I couldn't help but to smile back. “So your new here.” It was a statement not a question.
“Yeah. Moved here yesterday.”
“Wow. So where are you from? I don't know your accent.”
I gave a nervous laugh. “You notice it that easily?”
“Yeah, sorry, you don't have to tell me if you don't want to,” he said picking up his books.
“No, its alright. I'm from Australia.”
“Oh, you must be the Clerks daughter.” it sounded like he had forgotten I was coming.
“Ah...yeah that's me. How did you know?” I asked. How did he know my last name just by knowing I'm new and I'm from Australia?
“My parents work with your parents as of today. But thinking of it I've never seen you at one of the welcoming parties,” he said shifting his stance.
“Ah...I've never came because...I don't like my parents jobs, ah, exactly,” I said uneasy.
“Same. Though I want to be the lawyer that helps the good guys and puts away the bad guys in jail.”
I laughed. “Okay.”
“What's so funny?” he sounded annoyed. I guess this has happened before to him.
“Not to be rude but how would you know if they were guilty or innocent?”
“Don't worry. I've got to get going,” I said pointing back at the school behind me.
“Lincoln!! Lincoln!!” said a girls voice, interrupting whatever Lincoln was going to say to me.
“Lincoln!” said another. “Come here!”
“I will leave you, then. Sorry about your books again,” I said waving, walking backwards, then I turned and walked away.
“Will I see you later?” he called.
“Maybe,” I yelled back.
I walked up the steps of the school.
I find the office after asking a few people how to get there. Walking though the almost deserted halls. Once I get to the office I am asked to wait for the principal to get off the phone. I'm waiting for all of five minutes before he comes out.
His name is Principle Timms a man in his late forty's, early fifty's. Tall, skinny and I don't exactly know if he is the 'bossy' or the 'extra' nice Principal – yet. But I'll find that either sooner or later. Hopefully, later.
We talked about my other school. How impressed he was over my grade, my awards, community service and everything else in between. Saying how proud he was that I choose to attend this school. How well the school is. How well the school is equipped for me.
After about thirty minutes of talking in his office he showed me to my classroom. But walking down those halls of my new school to my Drama class I was deciding whether if I should turn and run or not. But I didn't. When we walked past the classrooms. All the students taking notes but a few just sat back in their chairs not caring. But most of them turned and looked out the door to see me. Their curiosity turning with their heads. But the teachers were different. They never took their attention away from the non-interested students or the boards.
Too quickly we arrived at my classroom. About 40 minutes late. So great for trying to get there early. Sigh. Principle Timms stopped hand on door and looked back at me. “Ready?”
“Ready as I will ever be,” I sighed. Which of course was a big NO!
He opened the door. Everything seem to be going in slow motion. He gestured for me to go inside. I took on step, then two till I was finally at the teachers desk at the front of the room. I didn't even dare to turn my head to the right and look at all of the students looking at me. I could hear them, though. Speaking in hush whispers.
Great. They will ask where I'm from, then my accent and finally get me to say words because I say them differently. Sigh, maybe I'll try not to talk until I really have to and that might be sooner then I hope. This is a drama room for God damn sake.
“Hello, Alexis,-” yuck. Now everyone will call me that - “welcome to my drama class. I'm Mrs. Fenlin,” she said and the turned to the class to say. “This is Alexis Clerks. She is joining us.” then back to me “Your lucky we only just started our new big project.” she said going through her desk, pulling out a few sheets of paper and handing them to me.
She pointed to a spot that I could sit. I walked there quickly and sat down. But where I sat was in the middle of the room so everyone could see me easily. Great. I also realised in that very long walk that their was more boys then girls in this class. Great, again. This had to happen to me.
At my desk I tried to keep my eyes on Mrs. Fenlon. Grabbing my pencil case and a book out then started writing down the notes off the board. Trying to catch down I didn't take in if the words made sense or it they were in the right order. When I was about to finish the first paragraph -of about 20 – and about to ask the teacher a question a piece of paper landed on my desk when Mrs. Fenlin had turned her hack on us.
I unwrapped it. It said:
I thought I might not have seen you again, Alex. Welcome to Drama.
Signed The guy that you bumped into :)
I looked to my right to see Lincoln. Well I guess we would see each other again instead of just maybe. Just maybe.
I wrote back.
Its a very big school. I didn't think I would see you again, Lincoln.
But maybe we shouldn't talk right now, maybe later, okay?
Signed The girl that was sorry.
I passed it back when I got the chance to. There sat Lincoln. While he read it he had gotten a confused look on his face. He picked up his pen and started writing. I was surprise no one had dobbed on us yet. He handed it back.
Why would you say that?
1- because I need to listen to this and I've missed a lot and
2-that girl over there is giving us both evils.
P.S. Don't look, please.
I handed it back. He laughed out loud. I gave him a look that screamed are you insane! I think that he might be!
Mrs. Fenlin turned around and looked straight at Lincoln. “Mr. Howl, do you want to tell us what is so funny?” she asked dusting off her hands and placing them on her hips.
“Of course, Mrs. Fenlin.” What the hell? He stood up. “I just realised that I messed up my work and have to start all over again. Mrs.”
“But why laugh, Mr. Howl?”
“Better to laugh then to get angry or cry. Don't you think?” he winked at me. Great. I smacked my head with my hands. Trying to also cover my face.
“Just try and go though it silently while I explain this and then you can laugh all you want out of my classroom.” she said turning her attention back onto the board. Lincoln sat down.
He wrote some more on the piece of paper when he sat down and handed it back. But I could feel the chicks that was giving me death stares still looking at me.
After writing all that was on the board – it was a very big board, larger then I'm use to. My hand was sore. I flexed my fingers and stretching them forward and backward. Trying to get them to relax. But it didn't seem it was working.
I decided to read what Lincoln had written to me. But before I did I looked sideways at Lincoln. Not completely turning my head but using my eyes. Making them go as far as they could to the right. And that was a mistake.
He was looking at me. Obviously waiting for my to reply. Well he can wait. He mouthed, Read it! I turned my head before he could see me roll my eyes at him. Boys.
Still know that Lincoln was looking at me I slowly moved my hand towards the piece of paper and pick it up. I even slower opened it. Trying to not laugh through the hole process.
Don't worry about her – Phoebe – she is just jealous that
I am talking to you and not her. :)
Ah...so he was a popular guy. I thought here they were like Jerks – Jocks. Maybe he didn't play any sport but was just popular? Maybe.
So I wrote.
Do you play any sport?
I handed it to him. Watching him as he writes then I hear someone calling my name.
“Mrs. Clerks?” said Mrs. Fenlon tapping her foot waiting. “Mrs. Clerks?” I looked to the front of the room. “I know this is a Drama class but that doesn't mean it's easy. Got it?”
“I forgot to ask how much experience performing do you have?”
“Ah...about...” 1, 3, 6, 8. “About 8 years, Mrs.”
“Is that acting...?”
“Ah...Dance, acting and media,” I said reluctantly. Knowing how nerdy I sounded to everyone. I even sounded nerdy to me.
“Excellent!” she beamed. “That means I have nothing to worry about you! But we are doing is a musical. Do you think you will be able to handle that?” she asked. I nodded.
“That wont be a problem. I just finished a musical before I came here about a month ago, actually.” Shoot. Alex you are very stupid. Please don't ask what it is. Please!
“Oh! What musical?”
“Ah...” I looked around me. Everyone was waiting for my answer. “Ah... High School Musical but put it into the real word like have drugs, alcohol problems, bullies, etc. So we had to add extra scripts in.” I said, trying to keep my voice loud. But as soon as I said the magical High School Musical everyone was laughing except for Lincoln and Mrs. Fenlin.
“That's good script writing,” she nodded. She then told the class to be quiet. But by then I knew I was blushing. I bet again today that I looked like a beetroot.
“Okay! Lets get back to writing people!” while everyone got back to writing – instead of laughing at me – I looked over at Lincoln. He was smiling. Smiling at the piece of paper. Then he was writing back. When he handed it back it wrote.
Haha. Yeah, I do, why?
I mentally groaned. So he must be a jerk – jock. Though usually it was only to do with footy, soccer, hockey and maybe some other sports. Who would know? I don't. I don't play much sport except for Netball.
I wrote back:
Oh! What sport(s)?
Footy, Hockey, swimming, cross-country and basketball
Shit. You got to be kidding me. He plays like the biggest Jock sports ever! This might not be such a good idea hanging out with or talking to Lincoln if he is so popular. I know that sounds bad but right now I don't want to be popular I think I might want to be invisible.
I didn't know how to answer Lincolns question. Should I tell him the truth about Jocks and Popular's? But just as I am about to write back the bell rings.
Haha. I know how people feel now when they are saved by the bell.
I put all my stuff away. Trying to fit everything into the small bag. I had brought all my books for my morning classes until lunch.
I stood up and look at Lincoln. But he wasn't there. Oh, well. At least I wont have to explain anything to him right now. I can figure out a good explanation. So I check my class list to find I have English. Yes! If you haven't figured it out yet, I love English.
I get to the door to see a massive wall of people walking different ways. Maybe I will just stand in here for a bit before I go to class. Sigh.
Then all of a sudden an arm comes out a grabs me and pulls me into the massive walking wall of people. I nearly scream until I see its Lincoln.
“Don't do that!”
“Sorry,” he laughs. “What class do you have now?”
“Ah...English with Mr. C?” I had no idea if that was right.
“That's my class. Just stay as close as you can to me and you will be fine. You know you could even hold onto my arm if you liked.” he smiled.
I laughed. “Nah, I think I'm fine. But thanks for the offer.”
Thankfully we got to class before the bell rang. Lincoln got me to sit next to him. He said he could help me if I needed any help but I think it would be me who will be helping him. Lets see how he handles me being smart at everything.
Lincoln got us a table in the middle but at the back of the room. But the table had three seats. So Lincoln tried to get me to sit in the middle of him and a friend – names James – but I had won that conversation.
About sitting in the classroom for about 5 minutes with no teacher Lincoln turned his attention towards me. It was like I was Lincolns flashy new toy. And he didn't want anyone to take me away from him.
“So what was with that weird question you asked me in Drama?” he leaned in to say it and whispered it.
“I was just wondering if you played sports. That's all,” I shrugged I whispering it back before leaning away from him.
“Mm-hmm.” he thought about it for a second and sat back in his chair with a disappointing look on his face.
As it turned out Mr. C was away sick. So we had a spare. So everyone rushed out of the classroom except for – of course – Lincoln and I. But one other person stayed – Phoebe. Great lets see how this turns out and what happens.
She walked towards Lincoln and I so slutty that I thought I was going to puke. Now that is not the type of girl that should be talking to me. But as soon as Lincoln saw her he seemed to become annoyed. She stood in front of our table.
I decided to keep packing my bag and not look at her. But looking down I can see her black high heel taping impatiently. So she was waiting to get my attention.
When I looked up she smiled. But not a nice smile. You know the smile you put on your face around little kids that you don't understand but they do? That was the smile she wore.
“HI, I'm Phoebe Home-lick,” she said looking me up and down. I knew what she was thinking in her head under all that blonde hair and hair product. You don't belong here. You don't belong talking to Lincoln, either.
Well that wasn't my fault. He bumped into me! Then he hasn't been able to stop looking and smiling at me! Writing notes! It isn't my fault! She is probably Lincolns girlfriend that is upset that he is talking to me and not her.
“Ah...Hi, my names Alex Clerks,” I said trying to be brave. I could stand in front of hundreds of people and not mess up my line but put me in front of one cheerleader and I am scared to death.
“Right the Clerks daughter. And the...new girl. That Lincoln has been so nice to show around,” she said taking his arm. He tried to get free but she clutched his arm for dear life. He soon gave up. She wasn't going to let go.
“Yeah. Don't tell me your parents work with mine?” I said it like I hoped they didn't.
“Yeah. I also work there as well. I'm going to be a lawyer just like them so..” she was bragging. About herself! Of course her parents, as well.
“That's great for you. Lets just get to your point to why you came over here to talked to me. We all know you never talk to the new girl. Plus you shoulder brag about that job our parents have and that you work there. What they do is wrong. So what exactly is the problem?” I demanded. But then I took in the shocked look on her face. Lincoln was laughing next to her. “Ah...I'm sorry I shouldn't of said that to you. I don't know what came over me.”
“Your damn right you shouldn't of talked to me like that! Your right I would never talk to the new girl. But seems you have caught the eye of Lincoln here. But see,” she said letting go of Lincoln to come so close I could see her pupils dilate and whispered into my face, “you will never get him or have him. And don't get in my way. He's mine. Understand? If you get in my way just let me say you made an enemy today. Bye.” she turned then and walked out the door.
Lincoln looked between me and where Phoebe's figure disappeared out the door for a few times. “What did she say to you?” he asked after a couple minutes silence. I didn't answer. I had made an enemy on the first day of school.
“Are you alright, Alex?” he put his hand on my shoulder and shock my softly. School is going to be hell.
“Ah, yeah, sorry. I'm alright. I got to be going. See you around, Lincoln.” I said turning to leave but he grabbed my arm.
“What did she say to you?” he asked. No intention to let me go. I shook his arm off.
“Thanks for everything, Lincoln.” I turned and left.
I felt bad because - surprisingly - me and Lincoln had all classes today except for Chemistry. That of course I had to have a partner in – but more on that later. I tried to avoid him as much I possibly could. He would throw me notes – I wouldn't answer them because Phoebe was in all his classes as well. I ignored him or rushed out of the room if he tried to talk to me. I grabbed my food at lunch and hide in the toilets to eat. I know gross.
Finally the school day finished. I met Lucinda were she dropped me off in the morning. She seemed excited and I knew she was going to ask me questions but she saw my face – stopping all questions. I jumped into the van and put my seat belt on.
I got home and went to my room. I collapse onto my bed and let out all the tears I've been holding for the past 16 years out. Later the night I fell asleep.
The next morning I found out that my parents had left on an early flight to somewhere and Lucinda didn't know when they were going to be back. She offered to work longer but I said no. She also said she would work next week on her holiday and I also said no. I didn't want to have someone around for a while. I want time to myself though that's been happening all my life. I need time to collect myself. Because, I - Alex Ann Clerks - is a smart, talented person.
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