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A Nerd's First Love: Part Three
All I remember was bright lights shining in my eyes, flickering off the trees, shakily bouncing upon my face and then focusing on the girl who laid in my arms, her life disappearing before my eyes. I was desperately trying to hold in the pain threatening to burst out of my chest. I looked up at the sky, the stars shining the only light available and then I lost it, the tears falling on the girl’s blood soaked face. I kept calling out to the oncoming people, the faceless men and women who were the only hope of rescuing us. The car that carried this girl to her death laid several yards, as black as death. Then it blew up, and I sheltered the girl, my back taking the on slot of branches, twigs, and metal parts. But I ignored the pain. I just could not stop thinking… why me? And then that thought turned into why her?
They came eventually, after what seemed like decades, rushing out of nowhere, rushing her out of my hands and dropping me onto a stretcher. I struggled against the forces holding me down calling out the girl’s name over and over before I fell asleep to an evil but inviting darkness.
I ended up right here in the hospital then. I was cleared out pretty soon, minor scratches and a couple little treated burn marks. But that girl, Alice, my girlfriend from a time when everything was more simple and I was naive, my life a happy, choppy story of events:
And then this.
I wasn’t allowed to see her. Alice was almost immediately moved to Intensive Care as soon as we got here, her blood spilling over the bed she was in onto the titled floor, creating little slatters of her life dripping away. I was awake by then, wheeled with her after fighting the amnesia. After assessing her injuries, we were taken on different paths, my hand reaching for her, but too weak from the amnesia, so it eventually fell limp over my hospital bed. I was wheeled into another room, but not before I saw her entering surgery and a janitor cleaning up the blood.
There was nothing really to do. Nothing was on t.v. that I cared to watch, and it depressed me too much to watch the other patients go by. I held a necklace in my hand. I planned to give it to Alice on the night of the party. But that seemed a million years ago.
“You ok? Alex is it?” a pretty young nurse asked as she entered the small white room, lit up by a fluorescent light.
I was mute and didn’t respond to her. She paused and studied my face before going over to the clipboard near my bed.
“It looks like you could be out of here by the end of the week. What do you think of that?”
I rolled over and looked at the wall, wondering what was happening to Alice past it. The nurse quietly slipped out of the room and the door shut before I fell asleep.
- - - - - - -
The day I arrived back at school it seemed everyone was staring. My eyes were downcast and I had my hood pulled over my head, glaring at all. A bunch of jocks came down the hallway, John leading them. I tensed. He grinned at me like nothing was wrong, and he hadn't caused an accident that almost killed my still in ICU girlfriend.
"Whats up nerd?" He smirked.
I felt the intense urge to punch him or give him the finger but I repressed it. He deserved it but I had more important things on my mind. Plus, him and his goonies would be all over me in seconds flat. No thanks. After finally gaining up the courage to punch the jerk, I couldn't make an more mistakes like that again. They all passed, smiling and joking. I felt sick and disgusted. I felt like everyone should be mourning Alice but so far except for me and a few others no one really seemed to notice. Ben was trailing in the back.
"I'll be right back." he said to them.
He ran to catch up with me.
"Hey." I muttered.
"Man…are you ok?"
I start laughing, attracting the attention of others. "Me? Ok?" I sputter. "Alice is in the hospital and could possibly die, my life is falling apart, and I'm going to be a nerd again. How can things be ok?!"
"Dude, chill! I was just asking!" Ben defended.
I sighed. He was right, I didn't have the right to be beating up on him so hard. It wasn't his fault of what happened. Ben was actually pretty cool and not as shallow as the rest of some of the people I had been talking to lately.
"Your right…I just, I just don't know what to do you know?"
He stopped me in front of a group of lockers. An asian girl was to my right somewhat, putting some books away and grabbing new ones hurriedly.
"The best thing you can do Alex is move on. I know thats hard, and you can care whats going on with Alice but you are going to drive yourself crazy if you don't' try to live a normal life. If Alice was better she would agree. Trust me."
"I guess your right," I remarked, "But…"
"If its John don't worry about that a-hole. Not everyone thinks he so tough any more, since he got beat up by you. Imagine! A skinny little nerd punching the guy and knocking him out! Damn man! I mean…no offense."
I had to laugh, Ben couldn't help but be truthful. Ben was embarrassed and worried and with that odd look on his face, I couldn't help but mess with him. He stopped and his wide brown eyes lit up.
"Hey! You smiled!"
"Haha, I guess your right." I smiled.
"I gotta get going man, but take my advice man. You can be worried…but don't let it consume you."
Ben took off down the hallway, his massive body dissaperaing into the crowd of kids, which was thinning quickly now. What was going on…? Wait. Oh crap.
"Damn it!" I yelled and bolted. I was going to be late for class. In my hurry, I smashed into the Asian girl, who screamed and dropped her books. We crashed to the floor, me banging my head hard.
"Watch it!" she shrieked. I picked myself up, dizzy from the fall. I looked over at her and did a double take. This girl was cute! Her long blackish brown hair fell over her shoulder, coming from a little winter cap she had on her head. She was wearing a grey sweater over a graphic t-shirt that was accented by some blue short-shorts.
"Take a picture, it'll last longer." she said.
"Huh?" I said startled. I hadn't really noticed I had been checking her out. Was that wrong? With Alice in the hospital…I mean I don't wanna like have a relationship or something…
"You there?" she asked sarcastically, waving her hand in front of my face, "I was wondering if you had zoned out on me. You know, its awfully rude of you to smash into me, check me out, and…yep, thats right, make me eight minutes for class."
Wow, I looked like a total butt.
"I'm sorry, its been a long week…"
"Join the club."
"Here let me help…what class you got to head to?"
"Drama…theatre…I'm a theater nerd."
"Nothing wrong with that," I chuckled “With Howard?”
“Funny, I’m going there too.”
She smiled, and we finished picking up her books. We took off down the hallway.
"Haha, thats awfully odd don't you think? What kind of coincidence was that, us heading to the same class? You'd think we were in a TV show or book, or something." she whispered, not wanting to disturb the class.
An older teacher was standing outside a doorway, glaring.
"Slow down!" she screeched.
Yeah right. We just ran faster, to the disgusted and annoyed grunt of the old woman. We reached the classroom at the same time and we both grabbed the handle of the door.
"Sorry." we both said. I held the door open for her and she smiled up at me.
"Thank you sir." she joked.
We entered the classroom together.
"Way to be late!" a boy in the back of the room shouted, "You two busy up to doing something?"
"His girlfriend is in the hospital a-hole. She was hurt in an accident and may die." a girl near the front snapped at him, turning around to stare him down.
The classroom grew deathly quiet. The asian girl looked up at me quizzically.
"On that note, why don't you two sit down, and let us dive into Othello?" the teacher broke the silence.
We took seats in the back.
"And since you Mr. Green since you seem so keen on talking to our late additons, why don't you tell us what this quote means?"
I secretly smiled. Justice served!
The Asian Girl and I were sitting at a table next to each other and had grown bored with Othello.
"Ok, so if your gonna be so shy, my names Mei . I'm a theater nerd, but I already told you that, and love singing. I'm pretty down to earth, hate jerks, and sometimes make movies. You?" she looked at me expectantly.
"I'm Alex. I'm a nerd too, but I never have really had that good friends. The only one I used to really have is that kid." I pointed to a acne ridden boy near the front who was picking his nose.
"Gross!" she squirmed. We shared a laugh.
"Something going on back there?" The teacher interrupted.
"Nope. I was just asking Mei a question."
"Well maybe you should work on focusing here instead and you would understand whats going on."
"Ohhhhhhhhhhh." the class went and I turned away uncomfortably. Mei rolled her eyes and snorted.
"Some of these kids…are idiots." she muttered.
"A to the men." I added.
As we left class that day, she said one thing.
"We should hang out sometimes, like you, me, Alice and that kid you were telling me about. Ben. That is if you wanna." she looked down.
"Sure!" I replied,"Your a good friend of mine."
She smiled and waved.
I almost didn't notice the small group of Alice's friends staring me down.
I was holding Alice's hand and rubbing it.
She looked up at me with her deep blue eyes and smiled sadly.
"They called me and I ran all the way here…your getting better?"
"I'm…managing. I came out of my coma, and that was good but I get horrible headaches and sometimes I feel incredibly sick. The surgery hurts like crazy still."
"I'm so happy…I thought you were gone." I choked back tears.
Alice looked up at me, "Really?'
"Yes! I love you Alice. Wouldn't you feel the same way if I got hurt?"
"Yeah…" Alice looked down at her hands and seemed distracted.
"Whats wrong?" I said following her gaze.
"Nothing! Alex, I love you too. I appreciate you coming here, I really do."
"Do you think your going to be coming back anytime soon to school?"
"I really don't know…am I missing much?"
"Well," I said reaching into a backpack I'd brought along, "Not exactly, I did bring some homework for you. John hasn't been bothering me though I wanna punch the jerk's face off, after all he did."
"Thanks. And its fine Alex. Really."
"Alice?" a nurse walked into the room.
"We need your guest to leave. Your family is here and wants to talk to you privately."
"Alright, I guess I'm not welcome." I chuckle, "Text me or something ok? And remind me to tell you about a new friend I have."
"Ms.Greenwood…" The nurse warned.
"Hold on! Who?" Alice shushed the nurse.
"Her name is Mei.”
"Mei?" her face crinkles somewhat for a second. "Oh trust me you don't want to be friends with her!"
"Alright, alright! Goodbye Alex!"
"Sorry." I smile at the nurse and take off into late-April weather.
"Your project is to work together in pairs and really bring a monologue to life. If you want to you can do it by yourself. That, is due in two weeks. You have time now to choose partners."
We were in theater/drama class. You are probably wondering why I joined. I must be some sort of theater nerd right? Well actually no. I joined it because it looked easy and my guidance teacher sort of forced me into it. But that's a long story. This is horrible. I can't act in front of others.
"You and me?" It was the girl again. Mei.
"No. No. You really don't want that. I suck at acting."
"Your gonna be fine. I'll go tell the teacher." she heads off, the stubborn girl she is. I briefly remember what Alice said. What was she talking about? I felt sort of worried for a second before dismissing the thought. Mei was back and we were supposed to be back in our seats. As soon as we sat back down a girl in the from raised her hand.
"I have a monologue prepared. May I perform it?"
"I knew you'd understand." she paraded to the front of the room and looked at all of us with concern. "I know all of you will probably need help or proper direction with your sort of, lets say, mediocre skills. Some of you more than others." Her gaze fell on me and Mei. Mei glared at the girl in the front of the room.
"What a butt. She's Alison Rose. Thinks she's the best out of all of us."
Alison tore into her monologue.
"I thought you did it for me, mama. I thought you did it for me mama. I though you made a no talent ox into a star because you like doing things the hard way Mama. And you have no talent. Not what I call talent, Miss Gypsy Rose Lee! I made you...I made you! And you wanna know why? You wanna know what I did it for? 'Cause I was born too soon and started too late, that's why. What I got in me (begins to chuckle), I could have been better than any of you! What I got in me, what I been holding down inside of me, if I ever let it go, there wouldn't have been signs big enough. There wouldn't have been lights bright enough."
The girl was good but she was too over the top with her actions and facial expressions. She tore into a song before the teacher told her to stop.
"Thank you Alison, but that is NOT what I was exactly looking for…I expect another monologue. Something creative especially. Class dismissed."
The bell rang and we walked quickly away but not before Alison bumped into Mei and dropped her books.
"Good luck." Alison said, her voice dripping with sarcasm.
It seemed like everyone hated Mei. Except maybe me.
“Well. You know what we gotta do.” Mei turned toward me.
“KICK SOME BUTT!” she exploded, grinning.
We walked down the hallway, side by side, smiling.