Jetta gets invited to hangout with the gang.
You're dead meat you little emo -stacey
How the hell did they even get in my car?
Then I remembered what happened at the start of the year. All the cheerleaders were told to make a spare key for their vehicles, and were to give them to the head cheerleader. It was for when Stacey's car had broken down or something. I couldn't drive the Blazer back then, but my mom had been happy to make a spare key if I needed to hand it over. Her daughter staying on the cheerleading squad came before everything else, even common sense.
I hit my head off the steering wheel in frustration. Couldn't they just leave me alone?
No, of course they couldn't. All throughout the day while I was spending time with my new friends, the populars around us had shot glares my way. Like I wasn't allowed to have friends or smile. Now they were going to try to make me break down.
As I sat there thinking a pack of jocks passed by. They must have been in on the joke because they started laughing and pointing at me.
'Stay strong.', I chanted a mantra in my head as I put my car in drive and started driving home, trying to push down the tears that were threatening to fall. I was able to forget for a moment that there was raw meat underneath me. The car seat was probably going to be stained unless I got it redone.
As I pulled into my driveway my phone went off, alerting me to a text.
'Hey, it's Maria, a couple of people and I are going to hang out in the park, wanna come along? Gerard will be there ;)'
I blushed instantly. What made her think that Gerard and I had anything going on?
I texted back:
'Sure, lol why do you think I want to see Gerard though?'
I hated playing mind games, why tip toe around the subject when you could just get to the point? I awaited her response, going inside and grabbing a few paper towels to pick up the hamburger and blood. I was going to have to change my pants if I was going out though.
After throwing the raw meat in the garbage I headed upstairs to change. My phone buzzed again:
'Frankie filled me in lol you two would be cute together.'
Dammit Frankie! Didn't I tell him not to tell anyone? I mean, the guys must have known something was going on. They had woken up to see Gerard and I spooning on a couch at Frankie's party. They'd have to either be brain-dead, or stone fuck stupid to not put two and two together. But that didn't mean they had to broadcast it to everyone!
'Could you possibly keep that on the down low? And when do you wanna meet up?'
I changed, gave my wounds new bandages and by that time she had texted back.
'Around 4:30, and don't worry, your secret is safe with me.'
I let out a sigh. Gerard and I had yet to talk about the kiss from last night. Did it mean anything? Did he want a relationship? I hadn't been in one since 10th grade, Brenden Decker had been a two-week fling. I broke up with him as soon as he started pressuring me for sex. It's not that I was all about preserving my virginity for marriage, but I wanted to save myself for someone who I trusted and actually cared about. And for someone who felt the same way about me. Brenden had been unbearingly obvious about wanting to just get in my pants.
It was around 4 o'clock, I had a half an hour to blow away before heading to the park. I sat down on the couch in the living room and let myself relax. It had been a long day, meeting new people and dealing with the prank. I felt strangely apathetic about it, so what if they had pulled such a childish prank?
As long as my body was still intact, I was fine. The only problem I foresaw in the future would be if they actually carried out their threat. If that was the case then I was in trouble. Stacey had already shown that she didn't have a problem with mutilating someone, what was the next thing she'd do to me?
I let my thoughts mull around until I looked back at the clock and saw that it was 4:20. Time to roll.
I grabbed my jacket and headed out. The October sky was starting to turn to dusk, the nights were growing longer than the days as fall passed. Pretty soon it would be Halloween. I drove up to the park, pulled in next to the familiar Silver Subaru, and was instantly reminded of what had happened here. My almost rape.
I let out a smooth calming breath, nothing was going to happen like last time. I was with friends, not on my own.
They were already there and seemed to be having fun. Frankie, Mikey, Maria, and Eva were on the merry-go-round, pushing it with their feet like they were still in kindergarten. Eva and Mikey were shouting about it going to fast while Frankie and Maria just sped on, exchanging evil smiles as they did so.
The rest of them were on the swing sets. Maybe it was me, but from my point of view it seemed like each member of the opposite sex had teamed up with each other. Amelia and Bob were sitting next to each other having a quiet conversation, meanwhile Ray and Monty were having watching the spinning mass of people on the merry-go-round. And there was Gerard bringing up the rear, sitting next to Ray and enjoying the sight like they were.
"It's Jetta!", came a shout from a very distressed Mikey. It sounded more like a shriek, and I could understand why. Eva and Mikey were clinging to the bars in the middle, and Mikey was tall enough that his feet were starting to slide off the twirling contraption.
"JETTA!" I was suddenly tackled by an over-excited Frankie. It was then that I realized that the entire ground around the park was covered in wrappers. It was like a graveyard for gummy bears, Swedish Fish, Pixie Sticks, Dum-Dum Lollipops, and bags of cotton candy. Two liter bottles of various sodas were in everyone's hands. Shit.
The speed that Frankie had made running from the still spinning merry-go-round to me was a testament to how high his sugar rush was.
"How'd you get here? And did you see how fast we were going? Didja? Didja? Didja? Fuck, I think we broke the sound barrier!" He kept rambling on and on, meanwhile I was beginning to suffocate from how hard he was squeezing me.
"Can't. . . breathe. . .", I wheezed. He immediately let go.
"Sorry, by the way, do you like the girls?" He made a wide sweeping motion to all of them and ran back to Eva, grabbing her hand and raising it in the air like a referee showing off the winner of a boxing match.
"This gorgeous woman is Eva!" He bounded over to Maria. "This fair lady is the lovely Maria!" And he went running behind everyone on the swings. "And these lovely girls are Amelia and Monty!"
Everyone was watching him, some in amusement, some in fear.
"Frank. . .", I said slowly, making sure I had his attention. "I know them. Maria was the one who invited me to join you guys."
"Ahhhh." His face suddenly went blank. Then he sprinted over to the jungle gym and started climbing.
"You'll never catch me!", he shouted as he reached the top, standing up and beating his chest. "I'm king of the world!"
I shook my head and turned to the others. "Is he alright?"
Maria nodded. "He'll crash in a while, just sit back and watch the show for now."
I walked over to the swing set and stood in front of Gerard. His eyes had been on me since Mikey had alerted them to my presence. Maria and the others, save Amelia and Bob, had gone over to a green Chevy Jeep, which seemed to be Maria's, seeing as she had the keys that unlocked. Bob and Amelia were in their own little world, I had a feeling that they were together. Bob had smiled more in the last five minutes than the entire three days that I had known him. I looked back to Gerard who had turned to watch Frank.
"Is this seat taken?", I asked with a smile, gesturing to the empty seat next to him.
His eyes sprang back to me and he shook his head. "Not if it's you." He smiled. His words made my heart flutter a little. Did he know just how meaningful those words sounded, or was he just happy to see me?
I sat down and we sat in silence, watching Frankie run around the entire park, jumping off of shit and nearly killing himself while trying to jump off the tire swing at its full arc.
The silence Gerard and I sat in wasn't awkward, it was more of a companionable one. The urge to say something wasn't there, and it was comfortable just being in his presence. We started swinging at one time and at one point when we passed each other in our uncoördinated arcs he reached out and grabbed my hand.
It caused us to fall in sequence, and the feeling of weightlessness mixed with his touch made me fly even higher. We were both giggling as we continued swinging together. I took the time to notice how long his fingers were, how they rounded at the edges, yet were big due to him being a guy.
In an act of childishness, I tried going higher, leaning back and gripping the swing's ropes to pulled me up farther. This caused him to try to get as high as I was. It didn't work because of our conjoined hands, but he laughed either way.
"Having fun?", he asked, full-out laughing now. He had given up and was slowing down.
"Yeah, I just wish I could get higher." I put my feet down, bringing me to an abrupt stop. He did the same.
"You know, I always wondered what would happen if you got high enough to flip completely over." I said randomly. He smirked, "You wanna try?"
I looked at him in confusion. "What do you mean, that's like impossible to do."
He got up, releasing my hand to my disappointment. That was until I felt two hands on my back.
"Not if you have someone helping you silly." He started pushing me and I got the idea, doing my best to keep in time with him to get the most height. Finally it go to the point where he couldn't push me any more, I was just going too fast. And at my last arc I had gotten higher than ever before. My knees had been above my head at that point. A pang of fear when through me as I realized that this was probably a stupid thing to try to do.
"Sorry, there is no way I'm doing this." I shouted as I passed him on my way down, earning a giggle from him.
I started to slow down so I could walk over and join him, when he walked out a few feet in front of me.
"Jump!" I stared at him. Was he crazy? I was only 110 lbs. but I could still hurt him if I landed on him.
"Come on, I'll catch you!" He opened his arms to show that he was willing to do this. Oh why not?
When I swung back towards him I let go and let myself be catapulted towards him. I had been right. The force of me hitting him was enough to knock us both to the ground, landing with me lying right on top of him. For a second I started to sit up in alarm, hoping I hadn't hurt him or something, but that was before I saw the evil grin on his face.
"You planned this didn't you?", I asked, a suspicious note in my voice. He smirked and nodded. "Of course I did, who else could plan something so mischievous?"
I shook my head. I was still on top of him, our legs tangled together and his arms around my waist where he had caught me. I started to pull away before his arms tightened.
"Where do you think you're going?", he asked playfully, gazing up at me.
I looked around. Frankie was still running like wild, Bob and Amelia had gone off for a walk, and everyone else was still up at the jeep.
I looked down with a grin. "I guess nowhere."
He smiled, "Good answer." He reached up and grazed a hand across my cheek before his hand moved behind my head and brought it closer to his. Our lips were about to touch when all hell broke loose.
Mikey, Maria, Eva, Ray and Monty ran through the place with wide grins.
"GLOW IN THE DARK PAINT!"