Hope there's no one out there called ilovegeeway123.
FRANK: I think I’m going to puke. Get the hell on with Chapter 10!
ME: Frank! That’s very rude. And after all I’ve done for you. I wrote you a story!
ME: Actually, I’m not and if I was it would be my business, thank you very much. Onwards!
“You did what?!” Mikey shrieks, the light glinting off his glasses angrily.
“I signed us up for the Battle of the Bands,” Frank replies calmly.
“And why in all of Sweet Suburbia would you do that?”
“Because we’re ready,” Frank shrugs. “We’re good enough. And I wanna show the professionals what we can do.”
Young Nile lets out a loud snort and we all look at him but there appears to be no elaboration. He’s on his DS so there’s no bringing him back anyway.
“You’re crazy,” Mikey shakes his head. “Fucking insane. You’re not letting him do this, are you?” He directs this one at me. I shrug.
“I don’t really see how it’s that much of a deal, Mikes,” I answer. “If we suck, we suck. If we rock we walk away with a $1000 contract. We’ll just try our best and see how far it can get us.”
Mikey gawps at me and I know why. Usually whenever Franks hooks us into his evil schemes I’m the first to object. Now I’m too happy to object. I’m talking about Cloud 9. Shooting heroine into veins whilst drinking a Peachy Keen milkshake and reading Spiderman comics and sitting on Cloud 9.
I’m going out with Samantha on Saturday. And no, I’m not dreaming. I pinched myself about ten thousand times in History just to check. My teacher thought I was practicing flatulence.
“You’re not seriously expecting us to win, are you?” Ray’s eyebrows disappear into a mass of frizzy hair. “I mean, I’m all for trying hard until you reach the top etc but I think we might need a little more practice first?”
“As in fifty years of practice,” smirks Young Nile.
“Fuck off you freshman prick.”
“He’s right,” Mikey nods. “Fifty fucking years of practice. And even then we’ll only be about as good as the Sex Pistols.”
“The Sex Pistols were a great band.”
“The Sex Pistols sucked eggs.”
“Mikey, I’m not going over this with you again. You’re jealous of Sid Vicious because you have a small penis.”
“Stop,” I say warily because Mikey looks like he’s about to insult Frank all the way to Thailand and back and Heather’s actually laughing. Well, it’s more of a weak chuckle but it’s enough to scare me very, very much. “Frank, we’ll do the gig. Mikey, Ray, Frank will do your homework for the next two weeks. Everyone happy?”
“I’m not letting Frank touch my homework.” Mikey shakes his head.
“Neither am I,” says Ray. “Last time I asked him to rewrite a scene from Romeo and Juliet I ended up handing in some smut between Romeo and Mercutio.”
“Aw come on! Those guys are so gay,” Frank laughs.
“Frank, it was coursework!”
“It was a joke. And you got off, didn’t you?”
“Only because you told the principle that I must have got my homework mixed up with my Shakespeare fanfiction. I don’t even do Shakespeare fanfiction!”
“Does anyone?” I ask wonderingly. The prospect of fanfiction scares me slightly. Imagine if our band became famous and a bunch of teenage girls started writing smut about us! Creepy. And imagine if whatever they wrote we actually did, like voodoo dolls or something. But that would mean...the fact that Mikey is my brother would mean nothing to fifteen year old fangirls. Oh my God. Gotta get out, gotta get out!
“Gee?” Mikey raises an eyebrow. “What’s wrong with you? Why are you looking at me like that?”
The others turn to stare at me. I can feel myself sweating. NO ilovegeeway123, you cannot make me have sex with my younger brother! The window is open. My escape.
“Mikey don’t look at me!” I yell, racing across the room and diving through the open window, thankfully landing in a bush and not the something that looks and smells suspiciously like dog shit lying near by.
From my spot I can hear a loud chorus of “What the fuck” from everyone inside the pizza place and seconds later the guys are there to help me to my feet.
“Gerard...” Ray begins. “Why?”
“The fangirls,” I reply. “They’re everywhere.”
“Right,” Frank rolls his eyes. “Are you taking anything?”
“I sometimes add a little extra sugar to my mocha frappechinos.”
“That’ll be it then.”
We go back inside and pay the bill before setting back off for school, me keeping a close look out for anything female with a notepad. I see Heather is still watching me. Perhaps she is one of THEM! I glare at her from beneath my eyelashes. She continues to stare sweetly.
“Seriously Gerard, what’s up?” Mikey asks. “You’ve been acting weird for the past hour. Euphorically complacent one second, insanely hyper the next-”
“-Ray, please translate. He’s using big words again.”
“He says you’re happier than usual.”
“Oh, RIGHT.” Ah, there it is. The grin. I can feel it splitting my face.
Frank notices it first. “Hey, it’s your pumpkin face! I haven’t seen that in ages!”
“Ignore him, Gerard. I think it’s cute,” says a voice that makes us all start. I leap about a foot off the air in surprise. Ray utters a little scream. Mikey gasps. Frank swears loudly. Young Nile walks into a hot dog stand and sends a wave of wieners and mustard crashing to the floor to the foul-mouthed rage of the Lebanese merchant. But it’s only Justin, Frank’s new boyfriend. Where the hell did he come from?
“Where the hell did you come from?” shrieks Frank. “You almost gave me a heart attack!”
“Just dropping by to see what’s a happenin’ with you guys,” Justin shrugs.
“Could you do it by walking please, and not Apparition?”
“Sorry!” Justin holds his hands up in mock surrender. “Didn’t realise you were all so jumpy.”
“Jumpy? Who’s jumpy? I’m not jumpy. You can’t get over how not jumpy I am.”
“ANYWAY,” says Ray. “What’s the goss, Gerard? Why do you look so cheerful all of a sudden?”
“Wouldn’t you like to know,” I answer sweetly.
The others stare at me. “Yeah, we would,” Young Nile states as if it was the most obvious thing in the world. “That’s why we’re asking you.”
“Alright, fine, if you insist.” The happy bubble in my chest is swelling to epic proportions. “A certain someone, your very best friend in the whole wide world in fact, has landed himself a date with the hottest girl who ever lived. Ever.”
Mikey looks confused. “Ninja Alan got a date with Lena Heady?”
“Okay, what the actual fuck, Mikey. I’m your best friend, remember?”
“You’re my brother.”
“But we hang out, like, all the time! And who the hell is Ninja Alan? And I swear Lena Heady is like, forty. No, I’m going out with Samantha Rose this Saturday and there aint nothing you motherfuckers can do about it! Oh yes!” And THAT is how I do.
“Gerard, that’s awesome!” grins Ray.
“Way to go, dude!” high fives Young Nile.
“Score!” squeals Frank, wrapping me in a hug.
“Whatever, jerk.” deadpans Mikey and Heather nods from next to him. Well, I guess I had anticipated that too.
“Details!” Frank hushes him, sounding for all the world like a thirteen year old girl talking about a friend’s first date. “I need details!”
“I dunno, it was rehearsal and I had a mfsboneroverLindseyfft and she was outside and I just asked her.” I tell them.
Ray looks confused. “You had a what?”
“A mffsnaboner,” I reply.
“I HAD A BONER, ALRIGHT?” I cry. “I HAD A BONER OVER LINDSEY DURING REHEARSAL. AND IT WAS VERY EMBARRASSING AND I’D REALLY APPRECIATE IT IF YOU DIDN’T SAY ANYTHING, OKAY?” Jesus! These guys are thick.
“No need, dude,” shrugs Young Nile. “I’m pretty sure the whole of New Jersey just heard you.”
I turn around slowly. Practically everyone has stopped in their tracks to stare at me. I wave casually. “Hey guys,” I say cheerfully. “How’s it going?”
They’re still staring. Even the little kids. Do they even know what a boner is? “Oh get a fucking life,” I spit at them and turn back to the guys.
“You got a boner over a single rehearsal with Lindsey Ballato?” sniggers Mikey, instantly back in the conversation now that it’s turned to “let’s embarrass Gerard in public”.
“Well, yeah, I guess,” I shrug nonchalantly. “But, you know, the word “boner” is thrown around so lightly these days.”
“So, what, do you like her or something?”
“NO,” I reply definitely, making sure that there can be no misunderstanding. “I do NOT like her. Come on, I’m so sex-starved I see my pencil case as a condom sometimes.”
“That’s just weird.”
“Honestly, I wouldn’t go near her if I didn’t have rehearsals. She’s...you know...okay looking and all but the woman’s a time bomb I tell you. There’s no telling when she’ll blow. Samantha, however, is sweet and pretty and nice and doesn’t care that I smell a little like kebab after exercise.”
“Gerard, I’m so happy for you,” Frank beams. “I swear this is your first date in like...forever! Which is why you need my help.”
Evilpunkrockingmidget say what? “Excuse me?”
“Gerard, you’re a self-sabotager. You’ve ruined practically every relationship you’ve ever been in and I’m not letting that happen again, not with an A-Lister. I wanna make sure you don’t do anything wrong or say something that completely turns her off.”
“I am not a self-sabotager! I’ve had some great relationships!” Please don’t ask me to pick one; none of my relationships have EVER ended well. “Thanks for your concern but I don’t need your help or your advice.”
“But if you just-”
“-No, Frank,” I tell him with my stern look.
“Fine. Be like that.” Frank looks disappointed for a second but then brightens up as something occurs to him. “Hey! I need to fill you in on the “Let’s Kill Christina” plan!”
The atmosphere changes at once. Suddenly everyone wants to hear this sudden stroke of genius and we all huddle in, faces eager and ready to strike. “Okay,” begins Frank, grinning wickedly. “Here’s what we’re gonna do...”
DATE: Friday, 2011-09-16
TIME: 1:45 Lunch rehearsal
LOCATION: Drama Room
MISSION OBJECTIVE: Oh my God, this must be the COOLEST thing I’ve ever done! Look at me, I’m shaking! Okay, be calm Gerard, calm. All you’ve got to do is go up to her and tell her that there’s a photographer outside wanting to take some pictures. Easy as pigeon pie.
Why would anyone want to eat pigeon?
There she is. Sitting on the stage and putting on lip gloss like the devil woman she is. Just go up to her Gerard. Go up to her. Why am I shaking? Why are my palms sweating?
She looks up just as I stop in front of her. Perfectly pencilled eyebrows raised demandingly. “What?”
“Hey,” I greet her quickly. “Um, someone told me to tell you that there’s this photographer outside and he wants to take some shots for a presentation the teachers are doing for...something.”
Her expression changes from demeaning to ecstatic in less than a second. “Take some shots? Of me?”
“Yeah,” I nod. “He says you’ve got just the right bone structure or whatever.”
“I do have amazing bone structure.” She stands up and places her hands on her hips after flipping her long blonde hair over her shoulder. “Take me to him.”
Stupid, idiotic eijit. I smile sweetly and lead the way, thinking about how she’s too dumb to even ask what the strip was for. The “photographer” is waiting by the school gate, a camera slung around his neck.
“Ah, she is very beautiful model,” he greets us cheerfully and Christina flips her hair. “Yes, will do nicely. Very nice. Right. Stand here, if you please.”
Christina stands in her designated spot and poses. Click! The camera goes off. Another pose. Click! Click! Click! It’s obvious she’s loving it as she bites her lip, stands in mid strut, one foot up in the air and tossing her hair over her shoulders repeatedly. I stand a little way off, watching it all happen with a mix of amusement and guilt. Poor Christina. If she only knew what we’re going to do with these pictures.
Finally, the photographer turns the camera off and congratulates Christina on her beauty and fantastic modelling. She beams radiantly and tells him “any time” causing me to snigger. Any time. “Never again” seems more likely after this. As she turns around to grab her things together I slip the photographer a crisp green note.
“Thanks Mr Hot Dog Stand Man,” I whisper to him. “Sorry about Young Nile yesterday. Hope this makes up for it.”
Mr Hot Dog Stand Man assures me that we’re cool and hands me the camera, complete with the photographs. I feel so bad! Maybe I shouldn’t do this. Maybe it’s too harsh.
“Nice poses,” I tell Christina as she makes back for school.
She turns around, surprised. “Oh, you’re still here?” she says and without waiting for my reply continues, “Look. I know that for some strange reason Samantha has decided that she likes you but I’d really appreciate it if you just stayed out of my face, okay? It’s enough to know that soon you’ll be performing next to me in front of the whole board of Arts and Theatre. But generally people like me do not mix with emo fags like you and that’s the way it should be. Thanks for the heads up on the photo shoot. Feel free to never speak to me again.”
And she turns her back on me and marches back to the Drama Room leaving me standing with the camera in my hands and sure of one thing. Young Nile was right. The bitch must die.
Frank is waiting with Mr Stevens, the head of our year, in the computer suite.
“You got the pictures?” he mouths at me and I nod to his thumbs up.
“Sir, here are the pictures you wanted,” says Frank, taking the camera from me and showing it to Mr Stevens.
Mr Stevens looks at them curiously. “These are a little flamboyant, boys,” he tells us. “She knows what the shots are for, doesn’t she?”
Frank avoids my eyes. If we look at each other we’ll both instantly start laughing. “Sure she does, Mr Stevens,” Frank nods. “She happy to help.”
“Well okay,” Mr Stevens shrugs. “Thanks a lot for doing this, by the way. I’ll make sure to mention it in your end reports. So I guess you can get a start on the PowerPoint now if you like, I’ve got a class to teach.”
“Thanks Sir. You can count on us,” Frank smirks.
I hold my breath until he’s out of the room when I release a huge snort of laughter. “Oh my God,” I gasp. “Can’t breathe. Too fucking funny.”
“Shut up, someone’ll hear you.” Frank waves me to be silent and sits down at one of the computers. I plant myself next to him, trying hard to subside my giggles. Unsuccessfully. We load the pictures onto the system with baited breath. The fast ticking of the clock is in perfect sync with the beating of my heart.
“Man,” Frank says quietly, viewing the pictures. “She is so going down.”
The next day everybody is talking about it. You can’t even walk into a lesson without spotting someone gesturing at a print-out of a PowerPoint presentation with their friend. People whisper it in classes. Shout it out across corridors. Make groups on Facebook. And the new Gods of Belleville High survey it all with satisfaction.
By Gods of Belleville High I mean Frank, Ray, Mikey and I who are still in hysterics. The guilt is completely gone now that just rescued a new kid Christina had locked in a stationary cupboard and now all that’s left is a sort of sadistic pleasure I get whenever I recount the events of yesterday afternoon.
“...So to help you guys get a better understanding of the medical ailments you might not want to talk about, some students made a little PowerPoint presentation.”
Queue presentation. Christina is standing with her hands behind her back, a shy expression on her face. The caption reads “There are a lot of problems that people like me might be too shy to talk about...”
Christina’s hands are on her hips: “...But you can’t suffer in silence forever.”
“No matter how embarrassing, eventually you gotta say...”
Christina’s hands are clasped to her sides and her butt sticks out very obviously. “...I’m one of the lead roles in the school production, homecoming queen and soon-to-be prom queen...And I still get haemorrhoids!”
“Honestly, they’re freaking huge! And so embarrassing! But it’s okay because there are ways to deal with it that make you feel so much better!”
Her hands are over her chest and she’s beaming from the screen. “I’m Christina and this is my story! For more information, go to Christina’s page at the HealthyTeen website. Laters!”
The whole room was ear-piercing with laughter and Christina looked like she’d just been hit in the face with a brick. And DOWN goes Demon Mistress, back into the dark depths where from once she came. I think she might know that I had something to do with it but who cares? The look on her face was so worth it.
I’m Gerard Way. And THAT is how I do.
Right, so sorry if I offended people with haemorrhoids, fangirls, homecoming queens or anyone with the name ilovegeeway123. If you wanna flame me, go ahead. But I think I’d prefer a rational conversation with lots of tea and I think I have some cookies too. Yum. :P
I realise that the biggest part of this story is the guys being stupid so I figure I’m probably going to have to write longer chapters now to move the plot along. Thanks so much guys for reviewing, please keep ‘em coming!!!
Next chapter up Monday.