The warm air of the house was calming as he walked up the basement steps. His mum always knew to keep the house heated in the mornings, which was pretty much the only thing that made getting up bearable, besides coffee of course. He was surprised to see Ivy already up and running in the kitchen.
Ivy jumped and nearly dropped the glass she was holding as she pulled her sleeves down quickly. "Fuck, Gerard, you scared me! I didn't hear you get up." She squinted at the clock. "Why are you up so early? It's five thirty."
"I hate being rushed," he explained. "Especially in the morning. Why are you up?" There was a tone of suspicion in his voice.
"Graveyard shift, remember?" Ivy said, realizing with excitement that this was the most they'd ever talked. They were having an actual conversation. "I just got home from work."
"Damn, that sucks." She looked pretty damn weird for just getting back from work. She was wearing a blue and black striped hoodie and sweats, but her face was done up with elaborate dark makeup and glitter. Her feet were bare, and Gerard noticed a duffel bag sitting on the counter with a pair of heels sticking out of them. "Although, you look more like you just got home from your boyfriend's..."
Ivy's face went pale. "I'm sorry," he said quickly. "That was rude."
"No matter," she said as the colour returned to her face. "My manager just likes me to look nice at work is all. Plus, it helps me get better tips."
"Tips?" said Gerard. "I thought you worked at a liquor store?"
"I do... There's a cafe inside as well. I had to cover for a girl that waits tables, I end up getting stuck with it a lot." The lies rolled perfectly off of her tongue as she sat down with her orange juice. She was a pro at hiding things.
"Hmm..." Gerard thought out loud. "Where is this place? I've never been to a liquor store with a cafe inside before."
"So many questions Gerard, and last night you wouldn't even look in my direction," Ivy laughed. "We'll talk later, I need some sleep." She gathered her stuff together and stood from the table.
"So lucky," he grumbled, "not being in regular school. I wish I could sleep all morning and do work whenever I felt like it. And hey, just 'cause I cleared your plate once doesn't mean I'm your personal busboy." He motioned at her glass.
Ivy responded by simply poking him playfully and headed towards her room. "Have fuuun," she teased in a singsong voice.
"Dude, you gotta meet her," Gerard said, as he gently tapped his croquet mallet against the ball. "She's a trip." He watched as it rolled no where even close to the hoop set up for him. He sighed. He wasn't good at anything.
Frank smiled. "You've been talking about her all day. If I didn't know any better, I'd say you have a crush." He took his turn, sending the ball through three hoops with ease.
Gerard rolled his eyes. "Whatever," he said. "I'm just saying she seems like a cool chick, I don't want her getting in the wrong crowd when she comes here. She should hang with us."
"She seems like a fucked up chick that's what," Frank said. "Living on her own at sixteen? Who the hell does that?"
"Hey," Gerard warned. "We don't know her story. Maybe her parents beat her or some shit. I would understand running away from that."
"I suppose so..."
"You shouldn't be so quick to ju-" Gerard's words were cut off as a football sailed through the air and nailed him in the head. The laughter of varsity jocks echoes in the distance. Even Frank had to giggle a bit.
Gerard however, wasn't as amused. He calmly stood up, picked up the football, and headed across the field with death in his eyes. "Awww look," the guys laughed. "He's all upset now, boo hoo."
"You know," he said bitterly, "you should really watch where you throw this thing. No wonder our team loses every fucking game."
"Watch it," replied Josh Ceban, AKA the captain of the football them. "At least we don't have to play faggoty croquet for PE credits because we're too weak for anything else."
Gerard still had his mallet in hand, and he took advantage of it. He swung it around wildly to get everyone out of the way, and then went straight for Josh, tackling him to the ground and furiously hitting him. Profanity flew out of his mouth as he bloodied and bruised Josh's face, until Frank ran over and pulled Gerard off of him, still cursing and flinging his fists in every direction. He nearly got hit himself. Josh lay face down on the ground, shuddering.
"Aww, you crying Joshy? Who's the faggot now, eh? Who's the FUCKING FAGGOT NOW?" Frank struggled to restrain him as he lunged forward again, his face growing red with rage. Teachers ran from every direction, some aiding Josh to stand, and the others escorting Gerard off the field.
Frank sighed and picked up the croquet mallet, ignoring the football team's sniggers and stares from other students on the field. He was going to pat Josh on the back and apologize, but thought twice about it. He miserably followed Gerard off the field. Fuck, he thought. Eighth fight this semester, he's in for it now.