The Stupid Boy and the Outsider Chapter 29
Things with Joe and me were good again, but... I was hoping for more. For about an hour on Monday we were just sitting in the Jonas' living room cuddling! What does he do after that? He goes back to best friend mode. As the week passed Joe hadn't been acting any differently.
Unfortunately, Ryan hasn't been acting differently either. I've finally realized that I really liked Joe and not Ryan, so when Ryan would flirt, I'd just ignore it a little bit, hoping he'd get the point. But he didn't get the point, so he just kept flirting.
I could see that Joe would get upset. Luckily he hasn't been having any outbursts. Well, if he acted like he liked me, then maybe Ryan would back off and he wouldn't have to hold his feelings in anymore. I guess he's been holding it in so that we don't get into anymore fights, which is good since I was a little irritable about this Saturday. I wouldn't want us to get into a big fight... again.
Somehow throughout the week Joe and Berna decided it was okay to go to Kristine's party. I don't know when it happened, I don't know how it happened, I didn't even know it was possible, but it did happen and apparently it is possible. We are all going.
Saturday came around faster than I wanted it to. Berna wasn't about to let me not go and Ryan was always there to back her up.
"What's that saying?" I asked Berna as we got ready for the party at her house. I had spent the night and was gonna spend the rest of the weekend there. "Friends don't let friend do stupid things? I think this counts as a stupid thing."
"No, it's, 'Friends don't let friends drive drunk,' and you're going," Berna told me.
"Why? You don't like her, I don't like her, and everyone we're going with doesn't like her, what's the point?"
"What's the point?" She repeated. "Did you know that I have three classes with that girl and in all three of those classes we have assigned seats and in all three of them she's sitting right next to me?"
"Yes, Berna you've told me that."
"Well, did I also mention that she's constantly ragging on me in those three classes?" I just rolled my eyes at her. "Yeah well, I'm using today to ruin whatever fun she has planned."
I just grunted and sprawled out on her bedroom floor. "But I still don't wanna go," I said whining like achild.
"Did you wanna do something else in particular?" Berna asked. "Alone with Joe maybe?"
"Shut up," I said while sender her a death glare.
"I should also mention that apart of my plan to ruin the birthday girl's party was to have her see you and Joe together," she said like it was nothing special.
"So you got him to go to the party?" I asked.
"I got JD to help me." She had a mischievous grin on her face. "Somebody had to help you guys get together."
I wasn't sure if I should be happy that Joe didn't actually want to go or if I should be angry that Berna is making me go through with this.
Thirty minutes later Kevin drove up with Joe to drive over to Kristine's party. Apparently Kristine invited the whole school except the freshmen and "unpopular" sophomores.
I'm sure we were only invited because Joe, Kevin, Brandon, and Ryan were invited, plus Kristine told Joe he could bring us.
When we got to the pool we met up with JD, Jerby, and Ryan in the parking lot. We walked in to see a Hawaiian themed set up inside. Surprisingly it didn't look too cheesy in the indoor pool.
"Woah," all the guys said.
"Pretty cool huh?" Ryan asked. "Kristine made me run around town for about three weeks to make sure everything was perfect."
There wasn't a lot of people in the pool and the ones that were, were at the opposite side of where we stood. They were just splashing around in the shallow end. Smart, smart people. The others were hanging out at the different food stations or dancing in the far corner of the room. It was far enough so that no one could fall or get pushed in the pool by accident and so that the DJ's equipment would stay dry. There was a life guard, cabana boys, and a masseuse. Why you would need a masseuse for a pool party, I wouldn't know, but she was there with a line of boys waiting for massages. Kristine's parents must have shelled out a lot for this party.
"I'll admit," Berna said with a sigh, "it's not as ugly as I imagined."
Kevin wandered off to join Brandon, Jessie, Rosa, and all their friends.
"So are we gonna swim or what?" Jerby asked before receiving glares from Berna and JD.
"Don't miss out on the fun just because of me," I told them. "I'll be fine, really."
"Are you sure?" Berna asked me. I just nodded in response. "Okay then," she said before walking away with JD and Jerby.
"You can go too Joe," Ryan said.
"Actually, I promised Jackie that I'd stay with her." No he didn't, but I wasn't gonna say that. "I didn't bring a change of clothes anyway," Joe said. That was true.
"Why are you so against swimming anyway?" Ryan asked me.
"Don't you know cousin?" Kristine asked as she walked up to us with Francis at her side. "She fell in a pool when we were ten and she's been afraid ever since." She looked at me and said, "It's nice of you to come." She actually sounded like she kinda meant it so I just smiled.
"This is for you," Joe said handing her the present he carried in. "Jackie picked it out, but we split the cost, so it's from the both of us."
"Thank you." Kristine took the gift and asked Ryan to place it with the rest of her gifts. When Ryan left she turned back to Joe and me. "Joe," she said, "I'm a little thirsty could you go to that stand over there and get me a Pepsi."
"Sure, you two want anything?" He asked Francis and me.
"I'll take a strawberry smoothie," Francis said as I shook my head no.
"Wow Jackie, I'm surprised you're here," Kristine said when Joe walked away. "When was the last time you were at a pool?"
"Umm..." I wasn't sure if that was a serious question, but I answered anyway. "When we were five."
"That's right, but you got in the lake when we went camping so you must be okay with pools right?"
"That was just a one time thing. I don't plan on going in," I told her.
"Sometimes things don't go according to plan," Francis said.
I was suddenly aware of where I stood. As I faced Kristine and Francis my back faced the pool, which was far too close than what I would have liked.
"You know if Berna wasn't sick that day she would have been the one to go in the pool," Kristine said as she kept walking slowly toward me. "You know how I know?" She asked. I just shook my head. "Because I was the one to push you in."
The next thing I knew, Kristine lunged forward and I was under water, panicking. It felt uncomfortable yet familiar being underwater. My mind went back about five years to the last time I was in this situation. I'd forgotten how it felt like to be underwater, but the memory came back immediately.
I couldn't hold my breath any longer and I could feel my lungs practically collapse in my chest. I was gonna die. Whoever said your life flashes before your eyes when you die obviously lied. I didn't see my life. I just saw water.
I was slowly blacking out now. It's just like in the movies, how your peripheral vision starts to darken and it slowly works its way to the middle. This was it, the end of my life, and hopefully a reunion with my real parents. If my life ends now then I should at least get that much out of it.
Before the darkness took over completely I saw two figures in the water in front of me. They were just two silhouettes and nothing else. Angels that are probably coming to take me away.