Jamie reaches a life-altering realization.
Today I sat by the guitar guy and listened, thinking about the first time I realized that I could use sex as a weapon. It was Hannah Jacobs’ sixteenth birthday party and she had decided to have a pool party. Hannah’s parents were rich; everybody knew that about her. They had a maid, which everybody found stupidly exciting. At the time, I was pretty sure she had only invited me because she had invited the rest of my year. So there I had stood, on the side of the pool, covering up as much of my body as possible by crossing my arms over my chest, when the most popular guy in our year, Kurt, had come up to me, treating me like I was the maid and telling me to get another bag of Doritos for the food table.
Being the absolute doormat that I was, I had listened to him, and bumbled my way off into the kitchen, looking for food. Hannah Jacobs’ older brother, Josh, was hovering around the kitchen, so I asked him where the Doritos were. He pointed towards the top shelf of the nearest cupboard and as I uncrossed my arms to reach upward towards the chips, I couldn’t help but notice how Josh looked at me. His eyes were raking over my skin, drinking in every detail. I’m not going to lie, I felt powerful, and for the first time ever, I felt confident. I knew I would do whatever it took to feel that way again, and as the years went on, the craving for those hungry, lingering stares became a craving for something more. And that’s when the sex began. Although I knew something about what I was doing was completely abnormal, I couldn’t stop, because it was my only method of building my confidence. And so the sex continued, and I enjoyed it.
As I sat pondering this, listening to the plucking of guitar guy’s strings, and his rough voice reaching for notes he could not hold, a thought hit me like a train. March. It was March. I had not had sex in a month. Why hadn’t I had my period yet? The guitarist stopped playing.
How is it that a little stick could hold information so pivotal to my life? Two minutes of staring at this stupid stick and I was just about ready to throw it across the room. How could I last one minute more wondering whether something was living inside of me? I paced frantically in the bathroom, almost tearing my hair out. How could I, mess of all messes, care for a child? I could barely care for myself. I had no morals, no life direction, and no idea about anything. This kid was going to be fucked from day one, just like I was, and I had nobody to blame but myself and my stupidity. Yes, I always used protection, but the accuracy percentage on the side of a rubber box was just a number. Of course this was happening to me. I am, after all, the spokesperson for bad luck. And it was Joey’s; it couldn’t possibly be anyone else’s and this was almost what was most terrifying of all. The stick turned pink. Fuck.
They knew. I could just tell. I could see them whispering in the halls, casting me sidelong glances. Judging me. I suppose this was routine for them, in my high school, judging Jamie Gunn was practically a sport. The bitches with their perfectly shaped blond locks and perfectly skinny thighs may as well have had gold medals to prove it.
'... such a dirty slut. Joey told me he heard she has chlamydia.'
I was fuming inside. I almost turned and smacked this girl, whose name I didn't know, but who certainly knew more about me than I would have shared with her. I wanted to tell her how misinformed she was. I didn't have an infection that could be cured. No. I had a much more long term condition that I couldn't bring myself to dispose of. But I held my tongue and continued making my way to English class.
Mikey was sitting, waiting for me in the back row of seats, his chair tilted back, balancing on its back legs, his feet up on his desk. He straightened up as he saw me enter the room. 'Hey, missed you this morning.'
I sat beside him and dropped my bag on the floor, thinking of the pregnancy test in my hands, the blank strip turning pink between my fingers. I'm pregnant. I'm pregnant. 'Yeah, I uh, had some stuff to do.'
As more students filtered inside the classroom, Mikey leaned over and spoke quietly so only I could hear him. 'If it's about your mom, you know you can always tell me, right?'
I was touched by his caring tone, but I couldn't bring myself to tell him what was really bothering me. 'I just felt like skipping my morning classes.' I tried to seem nonchalant as I shrugged. Mikey looked unconvinced, but said nothing.
I was sitting eating a sandwich in my lunch period when I felt a presence looming over me. I looked up to see Joey, towering over me. There was an expression I'd never seen before on his face that I couldn't recognize. Was it... fear?
'Someone saw you going into the drug store earlier today.' He spluttered, looking at the ground.
I frowned, knowing where this conversation was going and dreading what would be said. 'Who said that?'
'It doesn't matter,' he muttered, rubbing his temple. 'They saw you buying a pregnancy test.' He looked up at me.
I knew it. He was scared. I could see him picturing his future by the look in his eyes. If I was pregnant, he would be tied to me forever. He would have to contribute financially. What would his parents say? Would his future be ruined? And worse, everyone would know that he really did have sex with me. The diseased, dirty slut herself.
I was mostly thinking about who was taking the time to spy on me while I went to the drug store. I momentarily felt like some sort of celebrity who had fans follow them into the bathroom, when suddenly I remembered that the only time anyone ever paid attention to me was when they were judging or criticizing me. Now everyone was going to know that I had taken a pregnancy test. Great.
'So?' Joey was searching my face while I was lost in thought.
'So what?' I replied, taking a bite from my sandwich.
'Is it true?'
I merely continued to chew my mouthful while he squirmed. I think he noticed that I was trying to make him uncomfortable because suddenly, his face got harder, the vulnerability in his eyes disappeared and his voice got lower, became venomous.
'All I can say is it better be Lee Jacobs' if you are knocked up. Because if it's mine, there will be hell to pay.'
And then, he walked away.
What did that even mean? 'There will be hell to pay.' Wasn't I already paying for sleeping with him in the first place? Coming from Joey, I was willing to bet money that he was serious, and I should have been afraid of what he was threatening me with.
I felt ill, and it wasn't just the morning sickness.
Hey all, sorry it's been a while! My computer crashed and I lost so many chapters of my stories, it was devastating. I also moved house, so a lot has been going on, sorry to leave you hanging, but I'm back!
What a twist. What did you think of the chapter? Rate and review.
I hope you are all still reading!