I sigh and tap my pencil on the desk, waiting for the horrid hour of detention to be over. I don’t even deserve to be in detention. So I forgot my homework in my locker, so what? How fucking hard is it to let me go to my locker and get it? It’s not like I was lying about having it in my locker...this time. Patrick helped me with it last night, and I’m still in trouble. As soon as we’re dismissed, I rush out the door and fall over someone. Looking down at the poor soul I’ve tumbled to the ground, I see Patrick’s sheepish smile.
“C-Can I have a r-ride home?” I get off of him and help him up, he looks down and fidgets, “It’s just.. I missed the bus...”
I grin at him, “You just wanted to wait for me.”
A light blush brushes across his cheeks as he shakes his head, “N-No I missed the b-bus because my l-locker c-combination...”
I quirk an eyebrow, “Your locker combination?”
He nods, “S-Someone ch-changed the lock.” he frowns.
“Did you get it opened?”
He shakes his head, “I’ll have to buy a new lock and have that one cut off..”
I frown and wrap an arm around his shoulders, “Let’s go get you that lock then.”
He smiles sheepishly, “I don’t have any money Pete, so I can’t.”
I roll my eyes at him, “I’ve got it.” I lean him to the car, ignoring his protests.
He gets into the passenger seat, still blabbing on, “Pete I won’t be able to pay you back and it’s your money. You shouldn’t waste it on my stupid problems-”
I lean over and cover his mouth with my hand softly, “Shh.. one of those locks is like, five bucks tops. So either zip it or do without all of your homework and schoolbooks. That means bad grades.” I grin teasingly, knowing I’ve won.
He sighs, “I’ll find a way to pay you back.”
I roll my eyes as I drive to the store, “And I’ll refuse your money.”
“Why?” He frowns.
“Because that’s what friends do, Patrick. They help each other.”
He blushes lightly, “W-We’re friends?”
I smile and shove my sunglasses on as I drive, “Of course we are. If we weren’t, would you have asked me for a ride home, or just walked?”
He looks down at his feet and mumbles, “I probably would have walked.”
I nod, “Exactly.”
After we go to the store and get his lock, I talk him into coming over to my place for a while. Because, as I do consider Patrick a friend, I’ve only ever seen him at school. And I really want to get past his shy exterior. I want to crack open the shell and peek into the Patrick inside. The Patrick I can tell is too afraid to be himself at school. He’s so quiet, and I know his thoughts aren’t as silent as his mouth. I want to know the thoughts. I don’t really know why, but he’s always intrigued me. We sit on my bed as the radio plays in the background.
“So, who messed with your locker?”
He fidgets before saying, “Johnny.. from biology, I think. But I don’t know, and I don’t have proof.”
I growl in anger, “He’ll pay. Meanwhile, make sure no one’s peeking over your shoulders when you put on the new lock. Don’t want them seeing the new combination.”
He nods, “Pete.. why are you helping me? And why did you drag me to your house?”
“Because, I wanted to. To both questions. C’mon, we’re friends. We’re supposed to see each other more than at school. Plus I’ve been dying to know what you’re like when you’re not at school.”
He shrugs, “I’m the same person, sorry to disappoint.”
I grin and shake my head, “No you’re not. You’re not stuttering, nor are you jumping at every movement around you. You feel safe around me.” I can’t help but feel a bit smug.
He blushes lightly, “Maybe I do. So what?”
The smugness drops as I smile at him and take his hand, “That’s a very good thing. You can feel safe, because I’d never, ever hurt you. I promise.”
He bites his lip before looking up at me, “Everyone who has ever made pr omises to me has broken them, Pete. My mom promised to stop having the occasional drink. My dad promised he’d stop cheating on her and wouldn’t leave. My older brother promised he’d stop treating me like shit. I went into those promises with doubt though, and maybe that was the problem. So I.. I’m going to believe you Pete. So please... Don’t make me regret it.”
I smile and look into his eyes, and speak softly, “You won’t. I promise. A promise on top of a promise. How could I hurt my best friend?”
He smiles and hugs me tightly.
I smile and kiss his forehead. I’d been planning on asking him over a fancy dinner, but I can’t wait. For one, it’s too cliche, and isn’t really us. I reach into the bedside table drawer and grab the ring box, careful not to disturb my sleeping beauty. I take in a few deep breaths before pulling the string for the lamp, turning it on. I shake him gently, sprinkling kisses across his angelic face.
“Hmm?” He slowly opens his eyes, “Pete?”
I peck his lips softly, letting my lips linger for a moment before pulling back, “Wake up, love. I have to ask you something really important.”
He yawns softly as I hand him his glasses and slowly sits up. I stand up before kneeling beside the bed. His eyes widen.
“Patrick, I made you a promise. And I want to add yet another promise onto it. Another promise that, like the rest of them, will not be broken. Marriage is a promise, and I want nothing more than to be promised to you. And I wouldn’t be asking if I had a shred of doubt that either of us want this. I know we’re ready.” I take his shaking hand as he slowly holds it out and slip the ring on, “So, would you promise yourself to me too?”
“P-Pete I...” He blushes, “O-Of course I...It’s three in the morning... You insane man, of course I’ll marry you.” He pulls me back up onto the bed and kisses my lips sweetly. I smile into the kiss, knowing I’ll never break this promise.