Chapter 79: Proposal
Gia stood in front of her open locker, staring at the math book inside of it. She couldn’t hear the people walking past her in the school corridor, rushing to their classes. They didn’t exist.
Her thoughts remained on her mother, as they had for the past day since she suddenly appeared on her doorstep. Gia was in a state of disbelief and shock, and she was still processing the new information.
She was so deep in her thoughts that when she felt a hand touch her shoulder, she was startled. The noise in the school hall suddenly became clear, and she realized it had just been blurred out. She looked to her side, and saw Hazel looking at her worriedly.
“Hey, you okay? You look sick,” she said.
“I’m fine,” Gia answered, took her math book and slammed the locker door shut.
“I’m worried about you. You’ve been acting weird for a while now. Oh my god, are you pregnant?!”
“Shut up,” Gia shushed her friend in panic. She looked around to see if anyone heard. “I am not pregnant.”
“Then what is it?”
Gia sighed. Might as well get it over with and tell Hazel about her mother coming back to town. She lowered her voice and began her story.
Lowering her voice did no good. The damage was already done, someone had heard Hazel’s question.
Half an hour later at lunch break, Lucas and his friend Danny were sitting by their usual table, shoveling mountains of fuel down their throats.
The eating didn’t stop even when someone from the football team came to pat Lucas on his back.
“Hey, just heard you got your girlfriend pregnant. Never thought you’d even get laid,” the unknown guy said.
As a result, Lucas choked on the gigantic lump of half-chewed food he had in his mouth.
“Alright,” Danny said, nodding his head approvingly. “Good for you.”
“Oh my god,” Lucas shouted after he had survived through the choking. “I can’t be a father! I still wear Superman underwear, I’m not mature enough!”
“Dude, really?” Danny laughed.
“Oh man, what am I going to do? I need to quit school, I have to get a job… Oh no, my dad’s gonna kill me! Danny, can you lend me some money so I can buy diapers?”
“I have 20 bucks and a condom,” Danny said, going through his wallet.
“I’ll take it!”
“I gotta warn you though, the condom’s like seven years old, I don’t think it works anymore.”
“It doesn’t matter! My girlfriend is already pregnant! I bet she’s pissed at me.”
“Well now’s your chance to figure it out,” Danny said. “She’s right over there.”
Gia stepped into the cafeteria with Hazel, and all the chatter around them immediately halted. Every eye pair was on her, even the lunch lady was staring at her like she had grown an extra head.
“Why is everybody staring at me?” Gia whispered to Hazel, who was just as freaked out.
“I dunno but it’s not looking good,” Hazel admitted. “Hey! What are you all staring at!” she shouted to the cafeteria, and quickly everyone turned to their own food or friends and continued talking.
“Uh, Gia,” they heard a quiet voice say. “Can we talk?”
Gia was surprised to see Lucas, and even more surprised to hear that he wanted to talk. First he ignores her for two weeks and now this? This couldn’t be good. However, she still said yes, and allowed him to lead her out of the busy cafeteria. He didn’t speak until they got to a completely empty corridor.
“I think we should go somewhere more private,” he said thoughtfully, and spotted a vacant bathroom.
“Lucas, you’re really freaking me out,” she told him when he grabbed her hand and dragged her to the empty bathroom. “And besides, this is the girls’ bathroom, you shouldn’t be here.”
“I feel this subject is very private and we need to discuss it somewhere where no one can hear us,” Lucas explained, checking the stalls to make sure there was no one there. “Okay, I think we’re alone.”
Thinking that he was going to kill her or something, Gia considered escaping.
“Okay, I literally just heard,” he started. “And I want you to know that I will support you through everything, I’ll drop out of high school and I’ll get a job.”
“What the hell are you talking about?”
“Gia… I don’t have a ring, but…” Lucas knelt down in front of her on one knee and took her hand. “Will you marry me?”
“Okay, first of all, THIS is the place you choose to do propose? A school bathroom? Second of all, have you gone mad?”
“Gia, I know you’re pregnant. We have to get married. I will not allow our child to be called bastard by other kids. And besides, don’t you think your dad will be much more accepting of us having a baby if we’re married?”
“I don’t know what drugs you’ve been taking, but I am definitely not pregnant.”
“What? You’re not?! Oh thank god, now I don’t have to marry you,” Lucas sighed in relief, and stood up.
“Why did you think I was pregnant?”
“That’s what I heard. The whole school knows.”
“Oh god,” Gia groaned. “This is just what I needed.”
“Well, since we’re not having a baby after all, I think I’ll just –“
“Stop right there,” Gia said firmly, and glared at the boy who tried to make a quick exit. “Sit down.”
Lucas sat down on the couch. “How come you guys have a couch?”
“We sometimes have to lie down. Now, we have to talk.”
“About what?” he asked, looking completely innocent.
Gia rolled her eyes and sat on the couch as well. “You know what. About what happened.”
“About the time when we got drunk and had sex?”
“Yeah, that. It shouldn’t have happened and I’m sorry.”
“What are you apologizing for? It doesn’t matter to me, I had sex.”
Gia was getting very frustrated. He was taking this as a joke. “Look, are you really that kind of a jerk? Do you sleep with a girl and then stop talking to them? Because if you are, then tell me now so I can stop wasting my time.”
Lucas was quiet for a while. No, he wasn’t like that. He didn’t like ignoring her, he wasn’t even that sure why he did that. No reason seemed to be good enough now. “After I woke up and noticed you were gone… This is going to sound incredibly sissy so you can’t tell ANYONE, okay?”
“I won’t tell, I promise.”
“You swear on your father’s life?”
“After I noticed you were gone, I kind of figured that you were pretty angry at me. And then it just went downhill from there when my dad came home and saw that his liquor cabinet was empty and he grounded me and I couldn’t call you or leave the house or anything. And I don’t know, I figured that if you were mad at me, then I should ignore you to avoid that awkward situation. Also I was scared that if you told your dad, then he’d be at my door knocking with an axe and you know, I’m very fond of my limbs and I’d rather keep them connected to my body.”
“You actually think I’d tell my dad?” Gia asked in disbelief. “You are an idiot.”
“Thanks,” he said sarcastically.
“My dad doesn’t know anything. He did see a hickey but he didn’t say anything.”
“How is that even possible?”
Gia shrugged. “What he doesn’t know can’t make him hurt you, I guess. So… What now?”
“I don’t know. Are you mad at me?”
“I’ll live with that.”
“So we’re cool?”
“Yeah. But… Can we pretend that THAT never happened? It’s just, I don’t remember most of it anyway, and I’d rather think it never happened…”
“Deal. But I am holding on to my rights to think about you naked.”
“Oh like you never think about me!”
Too disgusted to answer, Gia went to walk out of the bathroom. She had a lot of clearing up to do with people. But before she could walk out of the door, Lucas tugged her back to him and placed his hands on her hips.
“You forgot something,” he said with a grin and as expected, he kissed her.
By instinct, Gia kissed back, her arms sneaking around his neck. It didn’t even occur to her that the last time they kissed was that night, when it all went to hell.
They didn’t hear the school bell ring, and they didn’t break the kiss until the door to the bathroom opened and a group of giggling girls saw them.
“Oh, sorry,” one of the girls said and giggled, closing the door behind her.
“You realize that’s just going to start more rumors, right?” Lucas asked, taking her hand into his own.
“Yeah, I know,” she sighed. “Come on, let’s go.”
Later that day Frank Iero sat on the hood of his car, waiting for his favorite niece to get off from school. He was dressed in his most clever disguise, complete with a Hercule Poirot mustache, a top hat and a monocle. He thought he looked very sharp, but the whole fancy disguise was pretty much ruined by the cigarette between his lips, and the t-shirt that oh so subtlety had his name printed on it.
Frank watched as a couple of school girls walked past him, but he didn’t budge. He was certain that his disguise would be a good enough camouflage.
But when he heard what the girls were talking about, he dropped his monocle and his cigarette in shock.
“Did you hear about those two freshmen?” one of the girls asked her friends.
“The ones that fucked and are having a baby now?” another one asked.
“No way, who?” the third girl asked.
“The guy’s name is Lucas, not sure about the girl.”
“Gia. She’s taking advanced math so she’s in my class.”
“What a freak.”
“I heard they were making out in the girls’ bathroom on lunch break.”
Frank was dying to hear more, but he was dying to tell someone about it even more. He dialed the number into his phone quickly, and then waited for them to pick up.
“Gerard, you’ll never guess what I just heard.”