This is my first story, and I have to admit it's a little slow. This first chapter is mostly getting to know the main character and setting up for the climax, which will probably be in chapter 2 or 3. All criticism is welcome, and feel free to tell me if this horrible, or long, or whatever.
Chapter One: Morning Blues
Do you ever step back from it all, the chaos, the silence, whatever it is that is happening, and just take a look around. If we took the time to observe that one second, minute, hour… what we see is the joy, or pain, or that Kodak moment, or maybe even how pathetic it all seems. Maybe it was just me; after all the moment I replay in my head is lunch time; me sitting there with my friends saying nothing at all. "Do something!" I want to scream at myself, "don't just sit there and let time pass you by." It was a hopeless attempt and all I can do is watch as the clock hands slowly move with their never ending indication of my own silence.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - -
"Kylie, wake up, time for school!" Yelled my mom or as I liked to consider her my human alarm clock. Every ten minutes or so she'd go off signaling that I was going to be rushing to get to school on time. But unlike a normal clock there was no snooze button. Instead I'd have my blanket firmly yanked off me in a final warning that sent a gust of wind up my spine. Most of the time I deserved it, after all I was sleeping the morning away, but there were always those few days, on a rare occasion, I'd already be up: just lying in bed thinking about the day ahead of me. These days I felt that if she saw my eyes open, hands behind my head, she'd realize I was awake or at least have the decency to let me ponder my thoughts. But moms don't work like that; they're right, your wrong, end of story.
Today happened to be one of those days. Turning my head I saw the Casio clock on my bedside table read 6:07, and in about thirty minutes I'd be off on my trek to school. Oh joy, I thought. Another day for the world, or maybe just the kids in my high school, to see how pathetic I really was. High school was just another place for people to judge you. There would always be the idea of placement: whether you were popular, geeky, a loner, druggie, emo, whatever you were seen as. Me, I was invisible; or a loner to those who didn't see right through me.
"Kylie, your going to be late!" came the second round of alarms telling me maybe it was a good time to get up, or sit up at the very least. Moving my hands from behind my head to the sides of my body I pushed myself up and felt a sharp pain in the small of my back. Owe, I mouthed as I was not yet ready to test out my vocal cords. At the age of fourteen I had back pains, just another way to make me feel all young inside, right?
A knock came on the door; it was light but enough to steal me from my meditation. I didn't have to say anything for my mom to come in, she'd do it either way. The frame opened slowly to reveal the same woman I'd seen since the day I was born; medium height, chestnut hair that went an inch past her shoulders, tiny hazel eyes, small manufactured nose, and a normal body width. Her typical big shirt and flannel pant pj's were on, her arms folded tightly across her chest. What, I wanted to say. It seemed my mom could stare expectantly for hours and never get that I wouldn't get up 'til after she left. "You getting up?" she'd ask like she does everyday.
"Mmm hmm," I mumbled and rub my eyes. She turned and closed the door slightly while I pulled my covers off of me. It all seemed so routine, and even though I reveled in this order I apprised in the fact that it became tiresome. How many times could I walk over to the dresser in the exact same path, open the drawers, then change in the same manner. Am I a robot or something that was programmed to be constant and honestly as plain as a white wall. Emerson once said to love everything about yourself but Emerson never met me. Wow that sounded shallow, I pondered. It was but how could I love myself when there was nothing loveable about me? It was in that mind that I decided no one could be right about everything, even scholars.
My outfit today consisted of a light blue, short sleeved shirt, jeans, and a deep blue hoody. The hooded jacket was more of a prop, a way to say 'yeah mom I am wearing a jacket'. You see I don't get cold,…ever. Some people, like my parents, think it's all an act of some sort, but why else would I go out in autumn weather with barely any warm clothes? Honestly if I wanted to freeze myself I'd stand in a fridge. Others, they just stare at me incredulously, thinking 'ok, she's weird'. I can admit that I am weird but not for that reason or others they might have.
Leaning against my night stand was my dark tan messenger bag that I used for school. The strap hung over the edge of the wood making it easy for me grasp up in hand and place over my shoulder. It was light for the beginning of the year. I had a system of binders for every subject so I only had to bring home what I needed. Today I had my English and Math three-ring binders side by side in the bag along with a thick Geometry book. The text was the only thing that weighed over 4 ounces making it primarily easy on my shoulders; no real stress.
The door still hung open and I closed it completely on my way out. No way did I want any passer by to get a peek at that disaster zone; sure I loved it but… Turning away from the closed door I bumped into my mother who stood observing my lack of style. I gave up trying to please her awhile ago when the outfits she picked out just weren't me.
I looked at my watch and saw it read 6:35, and my eyes shifted back and forth as the silence deepened. "You ready for school." she finally broke the awkwardness.
"Yeah," I said, nonchalantly. I saw she was now dressed for the day in a crimson pant suit and black, 1inch heals. I stepped around her not wanting to waste more time just standing there. "Bye mom." I called over my shoulder as she walked into my brothers' room across the hall, most likely to wake him.
The stair case had railings on either side, and lead on one end to my parents room and to the other my brother's and my own room. My feet stepped forward onto the peach carpeted steps as I slowly headed to the first floor of the house. In front of me was our family room, filled with pictures and glass knick-knacks that no one ever touched, along with a light tan leather couch. We never went in there, it was mostly for show as it was the first thing you see when you walk through the door. Before exiting I turned left to the kitchen for a glass of juice.
In the mornings I didn't eat breakfast not so much because I didn't have time but that I just never had the desire to. Sure I'd have some milk or apple juice but not once had I taken any food substance and eaten it. With that I opened the door and pulled out my favorite morning drink Welch's grape juice, supposedly made from real concord grapes. The cupboard to the left held 3 inch high glasses to which I poured the liquid into and quickly gulped it down. All that was left to do was put the bottle away and place the cup in the sink.
Lifting my left arm my watch read 6:40, leaving me just enough time to sit and think. Everyday I would journey out at exactly 6:44, as it got me to school with enough time to grab my books and have little time to stand around useless. As I let my mind drift I saw I had a minute to go; the last minute was always the quickest to pass and sure enough I was up from the kitchen chair and off to the front door.
The metal knob felt eerie in the grasp of my hand, like something was trying to tell me not to open up the door. It's all in your head, I told myself like a mantra through my thoughts. Getting my sanity into check I twisted the handle and headed into the brisk, to others, fall weather. With the door shut behind me I released my grip of the knob and the ominous aurora it gave me dithered away.
My feet made there way off the 5x5ft porch-if you could consider it that-down the steps, and up the rock path to the side walk. Turning right at the curb the next house on the street belonged to my best friend Dexter Ian Barton, or Dex as he liked to be called. Dex and I had known each other since we were in diapers when our mom's would stick us together on play dates. It didn't take much for us to become friends, but that might be because we were one years old and you could say we didn't know any better than to want a companion. Also living next door to each other only made it more convenient for our friendship to work .
As always leaning against his polar bear shaped mailbox was Dex, in his usual striped cotton sweater with it's various shades of gray and blue, and a pair of dark blue jeans. He had his typical steel blue back pack slung across his body, his elbow was propped up on the body of the wooden bear, and one leg was crossed in front of the other with the point of his black Converse's on the ground. When a small gust of wind came by his dark blonde hair rustled in it's passing, making his bangs hang off to one side of his forehead. Dex looked a little like Mitchell Musso, except without the brown hair and a much larger nose; but there was still that boyish roundness to his face.
"Hey Dex." I said finally using my voice yet still unpleased at it's low-pitched plainness.
"Hello Kylie, and how are you this morning." Dex liked to use proper English when he talked and only when he sufficed to use 'common terms', as he put it, you know he was being one hundred percent serious.
"It's 6:50, I just woke up, and your asking me how I am?" someone else might think I was being too harsh, but Dex knew that I meant nothing by my tone.
"Yes, and I have yet to hear your response." there goes that perfect slang of his again.
"Well," I exaggerated the word as though I was in deep though about my answer. "this morning I'm aggravated."
"And why is that?"
"Because a)I'm headed off to school and b)I'm being pestered to death by you."
"Well I don't recall stabbing you with a knife or poisoning you with arsenic so I wouldn't describe my inquiries as 'pestering you to death' per say." I rolled my eyes but it was all in good fun. "So Ms. Kylie what trifling event at school is troubling you on this morning?" I shook my head back and forth while pursing my lips.
"It's school in general. The classes, the people, it's all so infuriating."
"Care to explain?" he persuaded.
"Not really." it was when I said those two words Dex knew not to press further unless it was something serious like a suicide attempt, but I would never have a reason to stoop to that level.
Next to me I heard Dex whistling blissfully while he added a little too much pep to each of his steps. The corners of my lips turned up and I nudged him with my elbow and sure enough he stopped and nudged me back. "Hey." I said in protest.
"I wouldn't be the one protesting as you know that you began this argument by elbowing me in the first place."
"Yeah, well,…you didn't have to reciprocate my bad example." I tried to make my side more convincing by using big words. Now it was his turn to roll his eyes though and I laughed a little. To anyone else you'd think we were a couple and sure enough you'd get a 'no way' as a response; probably from me, Dex would say something more sophisticated. Of course they would only take that as proof. But after watching the show Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide through all of it's airings I knew our relationship was nothing like that of Ned and Moze's. Sure we were closer than close, but we never felt anything like that towards the other, or at least I didn't.
"You ever get the feeling it's about time we grow up?" I said meeting his hazel eyes with mine.
"Well, I do agree that you tend to act childish, and immature," I gave him a look that read 'you better watch it or else' making him laugh. This only made me purse my lips once more now uninterested in what his real answer would have been. "I'm truly sorry Kylie, it simply brings me pleasure though to tease you on how much more…put-together I am."
"Yes, because you are so grown up and collected."
"I am, aren't I." yet again, I rolled my eyes but smiled nonetheless.
The light conversation was replaced by silence, which reminded me of how most of my day is spent, in silence. Through class I am as quiet as a mouse on Christmas Eve. It was like someone hit the mute button by accident and forgot to turn the sound back on so they could hear what was happening. Most of the time I reveled in those moments when only the thoughts running their course through my mind occupied my attention, to simply get away from it all. I guess you could say the silence was my escape goat; my oasis in this barren desert.
Sometimes though I hated the quiet bubble I surrounded myself in; loathed it with all of my being. After living with myself for the past fourteen or so years it eventually became tedious and haunting all the same. How long could I go with out saying anything, for someone to notice, or even care that I spoke not a word. Maybe they didn't, maybe it made no difference whether or not I chimed into the conversation. I could probably disappear and it would be like nothing ever happened; like I was never even there in the first place.
Lifting my wrist to chest level I looked to my watch which now read 7:10 on the dot. I had exactly twenty minutes to be in school by but I had nothing to worry about. It only took Dex and I ten minutes to get there by fast walking. In fact we were practically there except for the final block distancing us from the center of education. I was counting on those last hundred or so feet to last as long as humanly possible, or my steps to come slow enough so that the moment of arrival would be prolonged.
So thats the first chapter. I hope it didn't go too slow. If you liked it, or hated it, or whatever I'd really like to hear your opinion. And so you know whats going to happen next, it's basically more of showing you who Kylie is and maybe I might put the climax at the end just to get the story off the ground. Hope you liked it so far.