It's terrifying to have a gun pointed at you. It's even more terrifying to think that you're going to die and all those questions about life and death and God and heaven are going to be answered in a matter of minutes. At least, that's what I thought it would feel like. But no, all I could feel was the strange tranquility of it all. I was going to die, and that was that. I looked up at the boy holding the gun, the barrel staring at my face like a cobra coiled up and ready to attack. His eyes were a startling electric blue. Intense, maybe in another world, they could've made my face red and my heart beat fast. Maybe if they weren't so full of pain. Maybe if they didn't belong to the boy holding a gun to my face. I offered him a small smile and said, "Good bye, Brendan."
It was a big day. One of those days that you spend up awake and night and then freak out because you think that you won't be able to find something the next morning. Graduation day was like that. It was over. High school was over. Man. I'm pretty sure that I'd miss everyone. A lot.
I woke up early on the Saturday morning to take a shower and do my hair. I looked in the mirror after it was all straightened and prettied. I frowned. My chin length hair was curling inward in an almost model-esque kind of way. I didn't look half bad. Then I tried a smile. Hmmm.
It was kind of lame how I wished that someone was calling from the kitchen to get my ass in there and eat breakfast or I'd be late. Yeah right. My parents were somewhere in the Carribean escaping the IRS. Joy. I grabbed a poptart from the pantry and practically sprinted to the olds mobile that I had managed to secure from the pothead down the street. I got it cheap on the agreement if I'd drive him places. This included school. I drove the floorin' speed of 25 mph to Curtis's front yard and honked.
The blue and purple haired teen ran out of his house, dressed in an untucked white dress shirt and tie with pokadots on it. Ladies man, that. Or… man's man? He grinned at me in a friendly fashion and I smiled back.
"How's it going with Allen, Curtis?" I asked, not bothering to say hi.
He smiled again, "I'm going to tell him today.
I grinned at him and high fived him, "So the gay guy grows some balls!" I teased with a smile.
He stuck his tongue out at me and said, "You know you like it."
I rolled my eyes. This guy…
"You look good, by the way. Looking to attract some attention?" he asked, referring to my knee length bubble dress with thin straps. It was an electric blue that contrasted with my dark hair.
I shrugged. "Like he'd ever notice. I'm content with the unrequited romance thing we have going on. Besides, he's too busy being angry to notice me. We've never even talked."
Curtis offered a wane smile that I returned.
"So, off to Stanford next year, Lana?"
I nodded with a slight smile.
He let out a large sigh and said, "USC for me."
"Yeah I know, you came running to my apartment screaming your head off about the day you got your acceptance letters."
"Yeah well you're the one who started freaking out about expenses, forgetting to read the part about the full scholarship."
I shrugged sheepishly. Me 'n' Curtis go way back. How could we not? He was the only kid my age on the block and hell, we were already baking nasty cookies by age ten. By the time that we were sixteen and in high school, Curtis was out of the closet and due to the abuse at school, addicted to pot.
And because of my obvious lack of money and parents, I was labeled the stinky slut. I didn't let it bother me cuz hey, it was just high school and half those kids would be coming to me for couples therapy or family therapy or just therapy in general cuz they'd be freaking out about their sucky lives. Karma has a thing for fake butts.
We had arrived at the auditorium and the kids were already lined up for their gowns and caps. I hope I didn't get some strange smelling one. But you never know. The kids were already separating into cliques. I sighed, feeling a bit left out until Curtis grabbed my hand and pulled he towards his boyfriend of two years. Allen smiled at us. He had a black eye. Curtis had purposely worn aviators so that one, you wouldn't see his bloodshot eyes, and two, it would hide his bruises. I sighed. Homophobes sucked.
Curtis stuck the crook of his arm out to me and I took it. He stuck his other arm out for Allen, which he looped his arm through with great gallantry and we skipped into the building where we got our gowns (free of strange stenches and suspicious looking stains, thank god.) Graduation was a teary affair. With the whoops of congratulations (Curtis, Allen, and I) cheered as loudly as we could for eachother. Which earned us weird looks from the other people. Which we ignored. Which would probably earn a bashing for Curtis and Allen. And snide, biting remarks from the girls. Those consequences we ignored because, frankly put, we didn't give a damn.
Graduation was over and I would spend the rest of the day with Curtis and Allen. Until the grad party.
I didn't know Lana. After sophomore year, people just became the losers and the people who teased the losers. And that was that. Of course there was Michael and Eric and Aylin but you know, that was it. Sure the people who teased the losers had names but the losers started turning into the faceless crowd that just watched while everyone else was pushed around. And we were going to get revenge on them. Me and Michael. We'd get our revenge and then go out in a bang.
Grad. Night was supposed to be when everyone solved all their problems and hugged before going off to college. Please. Problems like these were too deep to be fixed.
I had stuffed the gun in my inner jacket pocket. I barely notice the girl with the electric blue dress coming in with the two gay guys of our school. I had a goal, and nothing would stop me.
I walked in and then a few minutes later, the doors closed. Not to be opened again until twelve o'clock and midnight. By then, everyone would be dead. There were no teachers, no chaperons, so it was a freak fest. Couples making out on the couches and dancers on the dance floor grinding. Was this high school? I was disgusted.
I glanced at Michael. He pulled his mask over his face and I pulled mine over to. He pointed his gun up and shot. The gun was deafening. Everyone looked, the music played to no one. I smirked.
"Alright everyone, on the ground, now." I called out.
Michael shot another bullet.
I knew who they where. Allen and Lana obviously did too. Their eyes were wide, probably like mine, and Lana's hands were shaking. She was across the room. She knew I wanted to tell Allen. I wish that she was closer. How could I protect her if she was that far away? A girl next to me choked back a sob. One of the guys, Brendan I think, made his way across the room and pointed his gun casually at Allen.
"Football player. Tennis player. The reason that we get called faggot everyday." Brendan ticked the reasons off with his finger. As if he was counting off why he should kill him.
Allen seemed to think this too. He glanced at me. I saw fear in his eyes. "Curtis." He whispered.
I knew where this was going.
"You're an ass and annoying sometimes, but I love you." Then the bang.
I heard Lana hiss. She got up and ran to me. Michael fired a shot at her foot but she didn't seem to care. She practically threw herself on me, sobbing and comforting at the same time. It didn't seem to register. Allen couldn't be dead, could he? Was that possible. Then I felt something wet on my hand. His blood. I started crying.
Lana was sitting up now, she pulled my face into her lap, so I couldn't look at his body. I felt her body shaking as she sobbed.
Brendan pointed his gun at me. I'm not sure how I knew. It could've been Lana's growl or the way all the hairs on my neck rose up. Lana snarled and said, "You better not kill him, you jackass."
I looked up. Now the nozzle of the gun was pointing at Lana. She was stubbornly frowning. But her eyes held little fear. Just tranquility. She grabbed my hand and said, "If I die, Curtis you can have your car back."
I clenched my teeth. Two people I loved in a matter of minutes. I had to stay strong for her. "Tell Allen I love him."
Her hand gripped mine harder. I felt like that was her only lifeline. She sat, staring defiantly at Brendan, or rather, the nozzle of the gun. Then something in her seemed to relax and she said in a whisper, smiling slightly, "Good bye, Brendan."