I groaned in irritation as Soft Cell drifted through the minuscule speakers of my phone. I felt around my bed for it until I finally located it--under my pillow.
"Hello?" I snapped. Who the hell would call me at...what time was it, anyways? Fuck, it was still dark outside!
There was a pause so long that I was on the verge of hanging up when a voice said,
"Yeah?" I asked. Whoever it was paused again, and I fought to keep my eyes open.
"Um, it's me. Jezza."
I opened my eyes wide.
"Jezza? Are you fucking serous?" I asked. "The fuck! I tried to call you like a thousand times!"
"Uh, yeah...my phone broke," she said uneasily.
"Oh...shit. Well what about my emails? I sent you like ten."
"I've just been really busy is all," she said. Like she was thinking of something else.
"Oh. Well God, I missed you!" I said/yawned. "How's stuff in New York?"
"Well...not so great, actually," she said hesitantly.
"What? Why not?" I asked. "Is it your parents?"
"Um, yeah, kind of." She was being uncharacteristically vague. "But, uh, you know how we get two weeks' vacation starting tomorrow?"
"Yeah?" I had some idea where this was going.
"Well...I was wondering...I mean if it's okay with you...and your mom...if I could maybe come see you for a bit?"
I didn't say anything.
"I know it's a bit weird, since we haven't seen each other in ages, but...I don't wanna get really distant from you. You know?" What she SAID sounded friendly, but her tone implied otherwise. But we HAD been inseparable in New York, so...
"Yeah, that would be awesome!" I smiled, mostly meaning it. "I mean, I have to ask my mom, but she's barely here anyways, so she'll probably say yes."
"Thanks so much, Vee," she said. We talked a little more, and I got her new number so I could call her when I got the verdict from my mom. I hung up just as the sun started to come up and, like I always did whenever I happened to wake up early (which wasn't that often) I went to the window to watch the sunrise.
Talking to Jezza had brought back stacks of memories, ones that I couldn't believe had only been a few weeks ago. Everything that I had known, everything that I had done before coming to Jersey, felt like a movie that I'd watched and mostly forgotten. It was like I'd been sleeping all those years, and Gerard had been my wake-up call. I was almost eighteen, and so far I'd done zilch with my life. Honestly, it was getting annoying.
After the sun was up, I looked around my room, which I could now see properly because of the light. It was pretty plain, with white walls and dark grey carpeting, and most of the furniture followed the same color scheme. I had a few posters on the wall, but nothing compared to Mikey's room--I'd seen it awhile ago when I'd put one of his shirts away after borrowing it to sleep in. While Gerard's room was covered with his drawings, Mikey's room was plastered with posters of bands, both famous and obscure: The Bouncing Souls, Iron Maiden, Black Flag, The Misfits, Anthrax, David Bowie, and lots of Smashing Pumpkins.
Speaking of band merch...I'd bought my very own Iron Maiden shirt the other day (this one actually fit me properly). I'd been listening to them a lot lately, and I think Mikey was starting to regret introducing me to them (he and I talked music, and IM was pretty much all I wanted to talk about).
Since I was already up, I decided to go all-out with my outfit today. It was free-dress day, being the last day of school, so there were really no limits. I hunted out the Iron Maiden shirt and a pair of black skinnies, and went into the bathroom (which was always a lot warmer than my room for some reason).
After I'd gotten dressed, I put on some black eyeliner and a little red eye shadow, which was pretty much all the makeup I ever wore. (I didn't have flawless skin or anything like that, but I seriously could not be bothered covering my face with foundation. And lipstick? One word: fish scales.)
I brushed my hair and went back to my room, shivering at the change in temperature. The first thing I did was put on the first hoodie I came across (which happened to be a red one). Then I put on socks and my old black Keds, and headed downstairs.
I wasn't really that hungry, so I just squeezed myself some orange juice and watched telly while I drank it. There was nothing good on, so I left and walked to school in a relatively short time. I think I even got there early, because there were only like ten other students there.
I was walking up the pathway to the main doors when I heard someone calling my name.
"Hey Verity!" the voice said. I turned around to see Ester running up to me. I hadn't seen her the other day because we didn't have any classes together or anything.
"Hi Ester," I said. I was a bit surprised when she hugged me, but I hugged her back anyways. "How are you?"
"I'm good," she said. "I think we're early, though."
"You wanna sit with us while we wait for the guys to get here?" she asked. "Frankie and Gerard slept over at Bob's place last night, so they'll probably be a little bit late."
"Sure," I said, looking to where she pointed. I could see Mikey, Dee, and a serious-looking guy who had longish brown hair with red and blonde streaks. "Who's that?" I asked Ester as we started to walk.
"Oh, that's Steve," she said. "I think Dee's bringing him on Saturday."
I nodded, my brain working fast. So THIS was the guy who would be needing 'protection' from Frankie. Maybe I could try and see if he and Dee actually did like each other, or if they were just friends.
As we got close to them, I could hear Dee laughing. Come to think of it, that was probably the first time I'd heard her laughing, ever. Hmmm...not a good sign for Frankie.
"Hey Dee, you remember Verity?" Ester asked. Dee's face brightened, and she stood.
"Yeah, of course!" she said, hugging me. Okay--so these guys were big on hugs. "How've you been?"
"I've been okay," I said, nodding to Mikey who smirked, mouthed the words "Nice shirt," and turned back to his iPod. "What about you?"
"Oh, I'm great," she smiled. The guy with the streaked hair poked her in the ribs, and she squealed and smacked him playfully on the side of the head. "This is Steve," she added, laughing.
"Hey," Steve nodded.
"Hi," I said. "Are you coming to this thing tomorrow?" I asked (I was never very good at subtlety.)
He looked a little confused. "Tomorrow?" he asked. I nodded. "Not that I know of..."
I was just about to feel triumphant, when Ester broke in.
"Oh yeah, I forgot to tell you," she said. "We're having it next Saturday instead, because my parents postponed their trip for a week."
"Oh," I nodded. "So you're coming next Saturday, then?" I asked Steve. He nodded, and smiled at Dee. She, of course, smiled back.
We were talking about nothing significant when Gerard, Bob and Frankie finally arrived. I actually didn't see them, because I had my back to the carpark and was explaining something to Ester, when Gerard tackled me. That might be normal for people with really happy friends--fuck, ANY friends--but it was new to me. I don't think a boy had ever TACKLED ME TO THE FUCKING GROUND before. Not saying I didn't like it; it's just that I kind of got winded at the part where my chest hit the ground and Gerard hit my back. Yeah, that part.
At first I didn't bother getting up, or even opening my eyes. I heard Dee and Ester laughing, and Mikey saying "pwned" really loud, but I just lay there.
"Sorry about that, I couldn't resist," Gerard laughed breathlessly as he rolled off of me. "Are you okay?" I kept my eyes closed; he rolled me over onto my back, but I still didn't budge. He shook my shoulders a little, still laughing, but nothing.
"Gerard, you killed her," I heard Dee giggle.
"Well, you know what that means," Gerard said, sounding evil. I felt him lower himself a bit, so he was laying on top of me.
"You're a murderer?" Mikey sounded plain bored.
"No." Gerard stifled a laugh. "I think this means that mouth-to-mouth resuscitation is needed."
I couldn't help smiling, but I managed to keep my eyes closed. Which was why I was surprised when I felt Gerard press his lips softly to mine. I didn't think he'd actually DO it, out here in front of everyone. Someone--Bob, I assumed--wolf-whistled. Idiot.
Gerard licked my lips a little, and I obligingly (ahem) parted them for him. But instead of deepening the kiss, he did something else: he breathed into my mouth. My involuntary reaction was to gasp, which was the same thing as breathing in, and before I knew it I was breathing through Gerard's mouth. That was possibly the hottest non-hand-action thing I'd done with a guy. At all. EVER. And who would've thought--on the lawn in front of our school, as well as all of our friends and what sounded like many random strangers.
I reached up and wrapped my arms around his neck, forgetting that I was supposed to be "dead". After a few more deep breaths (who knew breathing could be so pleasurable?), Gerard broke the kiss and I finally opened my eyes to see him grinning down at me.
"Morning," I said weakly. (I was still recovering from his "mouth-to-mouth.")
"She lives!" he smiled, resting his chin right between my collarbones. "Did I hurt you?"
"No--argh--but you are now," I half-smiled half-whined, squirming a bit. He laughed again and helped me up. I saw Frank standing off to the side, trying not to look awkward--he'd obviously guessed who Steve was.
"Yeah, um...GET A FUCKING ROOM!" Bob yelled at us, laughing. He'd stolen Mikey's iPod and was holding it out of the younger teen's reach. Mikey was conveniently not looking at us.
"Yeah, it's a good thing you stopped there, Gerard, because I KNOW you're not in the habit of bringing condoms to school," Ester snickered. We all laughed, but I think I was the only one who turned bright red. And how the hell did Ester know that!?
"Hey, did you see my car?" Gerard said, pointing towards some kind of vintage steel-gray car in the parking lot.
"No, I missed it when you were on top of me," I teased him. "But it's a stellar car."
He smiled happily. And then the security guard came and yelled at us for PDA on school property. Oh joy.