Chapter 1 Deal
Once again another season is about to end and a new season is yet to come. The hot blazing rays from the sun, the warm breeze that makes people spend a day of relaxation in the beach has been boring for Sarah. Besides from spending two months in her room reading almost every book in their house, she misses the excitement of school works. All those piles and piles of home works her teachers used to give them everyday and the never ending reviews for examinations. The projects and requirements that make all students knock their heads on the wall in frustration are the things Sarah is longing to experience again. It is better than lying in her room tracing the cracks of their ceiling and listen almost every night to the loud music of the parties in their neighbor's house. She couldn't wait for September to arrive.
One more week! Some students might have their brows together now, frowning because of the fast flight of time. Some are even trying to make time for their final happy moment in the beach with a fruit shake in their hand.
Sarah had spent some of her time in pools but she didn't enjoy it much knowing that the most handsome guy in her school is her best friend. Whenever she is in the water most of the girls come to her and ask for her best friend's name and if she didn't give them what they want, they would shot murderous glances on her thinking that she is his girlfriend. There was even a moment where she had done enough. Girls came to her and ask for his number but she didn't give it. As a result, after spending a laughing moment with her best friend one girl pushed her in the pool after getting dressed. She had to go home that day soaking wet.
Matthew Sebastian MacLlaegan is the name. They have known each other since they were five. He is a tall, handsome guy who is known for his childish attitude. He had spent almost his entire life dating different girls who only lasts for a month or less. He believes that spending a teenage life with one girl is the most stupid thing a guy would do. Relationships are for fun and fun is for everybody.
Sarah Ysabel is utterly different from him. She is a lovely conservative girl who takes everything seriously. She is a straight A student; that is why she considers the library as her second home. She never had a boyfriend before. Well there are suitors but at this point of time studying is her priority. Matthew describes her as a white lily, her favorite flower, pure, innocent and a virgin. All in all beautiful. He, on the other hand is a juvenile guy. An eight year old boy is more mature than him. Fooling around is his expertise. Teachers know him very well because of the violations he had done in their campus for the past years.
One time without any particular reason he had placed a pale of red paint at the top of their class room door. When the teacher came inside, the pale fell on his head with paint covering his body. He got one week of detention as a punishment. Everybody thinks it was hilarious. Matthew even called the year book photographer to witness such an act to make everybody remember how fun it is to have a Matthew in their school. It was a classic act of revenge but Sarah did not let him get away from it. Just after classes ended she scolded at him saying that that was the most dim-witted thing a person would do.
Of all the students Sarah is the only person Matthew listens to. He never wanted her to be upset so after that event he never did anything as stupid as that again. But he didn't stop being funny. He still continues to amuse everyone about everything because he knows even if Sarah always acts like his mother, she thinks he is funny. A little color in everybody's faces is needed in a school.
But behind of all these foolishness Matthew hides one amazing talent from the whole world, his capability to draw. Sarah was the one who helped him discover this talent when they were in fourth grade. She wanted to have a drawing of Mr. Stiltsky, their imaginary friend, for her birthday. Without second thoughts Matthew did so and that's when he realized that he has a remarkable talent. He drew things in detail. Big or small, he could draw the tiniest point of it. Sarah always wonders why he wouldn't share his talent to everyone but the answer she usually got is because people in these days don't appreciate art anymore. She knows he's wrong about that because little did she value art until he gave her his gift.
In Sarah and Matthew's spare time they would always spend their day in their most favorite place in New York. The park. A place where children together with their parents can spend the day making sweet memories, lovers can be seen walking beside the lake, and friends making the most of their time with each other. The green grass, the soft breeze, the breath-taking scent of the flowers, the huge trees that protects people from the blazing sun always invites Sarah and Matthew to come and relax. On top of a hill an old oak tree stood with superiority above all. Its branches extend in different directions like murderous lightning with evergreen leaves enveloping them.
As Sarah and Matthew lay under the tree admiring the scene above them, a blue sky with clouds dancing around with the music of the birds, the world turned into nothingness. They would both fall into deep intoxication and think of nothing except the matters between them. It was a perfect day to spend an afternoon in the park.
"I cannot believe we're already seniors this coming school year," said Matthew as he stretched his arms and legs in the grass.
Sarah lay beside him and said, "I cannot believe we're going to be college next year."
"So that means I have to date more girls this year because next year would be a busy year for me," Matthew grinned.
"No," Sarah grimaced. "This year both of us would be very busy because we have to work harder for us to get in to a good university. So that means you have to stop dating girls."
"No no no," said Matthew as he shook his head curtly. "This is going to be our last year in high school so that means we have to spend our time enjoying it." He lay in his side and looked at Sarah's attractive green eyes. He gave her a huge grin.
She rolled her eyes. "I give up. You will never grow up. You take everything as a joke."
"And you take everything too seriously," he added. "Will you loosen up a bit?"
"We are growing up Matt. This is the time to get serious already."
"Are you lecturing me again?" Matthew frowned. He lay back again and stared at the sky.
"And in your love life," continued Sarah ignoring his last comment. "You always change your girlfriend now and then. In case you haven't notice, I am also a girl. It's not a good feeling to be rejected you know."
Matthew's head snapped in Sarah's face in astonishment. "Stop right there, Sarah. Since when did you start caring about my love life?"
"I'm just saying," muttered Sarah. She never did care about Matthew's love life but now is the time to speak up. Ladies should be taken care of.
"I know you know that every girl in school wants to have a date with me. I'm just giving them what they want."
"What they want?" said Sarah in surprise. "You are so thick. Girls don't want to shed tears. Girls don't want to be treated as toys. Girls don't want to be dated just because they are beautiful!"
"I'm not dating them only because of that. I take good care of them," he said genuinely. Sarah rolled her eyes again. "Alright Miss Know-it-all-about-relationships, you're here lecturing me about girls where in fact you haven't got into a relationship. Judge yourself first, missy. Are you still looking for Mr. Right? Tell me, what is the thing you are looking for in a guy?"
Sarah gave him a sharp look. He returned it with a smirk. "Shut up," she said wearily.
"You shouldn't be too choosy. You might end up being an old lady like Ms. Albito with twenty seven cats," said Matthew in mockery.
"Well I'd rather be like her than to spend the rest of my life with a guy not knowing the difference between Zeus and Cupid," spat Sarah.
"Hey I happen to know them!" Matthew pointed out. "Zeus is the hot god who was adored by every woman because of his looks while Cupid is the chubby baby who doesn't know how to wear a shirt… Ouch! Aaww! Watch the face. Watch the face!" Matthew grabbed her hand.
"Grow up. Why do you even bother going to school? Don't answer that!" she said frustratingly. "Zeus is the god of gods who gets any woman he likes just because of their physical appearance while Cupid is the god of love who devoted his life for one girl. And for your information he is not a baby. It's just a symbol. And Zeus was not adored by all women. They just don't have any options."
"And they are lucky to have no options," added Matthew.
"And I am unlucky to have a conversation with a guy who has a brain a size of a pea."
She lay in the grass with puckered brows feeling hopeless to the guy next to her. Matthew laughed a little realizing how cute her expression is. He started thinking of something that could make their last year in high school a memorable one. Sarah loves to dare. A competition is always the thing they always agree together so he decided to play a little game.
"If you really want me to grow up, play a game with me."
Sarah looked at him with sparkles in her eyes. She loves playing games with her best friend. Every game they play is not that simple. It takes challenge and pressure. Most of the time sacrifices are to be made. Matthew thinks like a child but whenever he plays he becomes serious. "Name it."
"Are you sure you can do this?" said Matthew mockingly. "I mean it's not like the other games we have played before."
"Oh Matthew you know me. I never back away in any game I play with you. Have you forgotten who wins in almost all the games we play?" said Sarah in sarcasm.
Green eyes gave her a cold stare. It is true that she always win. There was even a time where he was sure that she would never beat him. They were working in a daycare center for their summer job one day when they decided to play a game. Each of them was to be assigned in a room with children and they are tasked to make them go to nap. The game is to finish that job in thirty minutes. Children had always liked him, but in this daycare, they were different. They were more like a menace-running around and not listening to anyone. The loser is to not to take a bath for a whole week. He or she can't even put a perfume or a deodorant. Surprisingly he lost. It was the most disgusting experience he ever did. He attended school for one whole week with a stinky smell. He even made up a story that what he is doing is good for his health. Some fell for it but beautiful girls didn't. It was totally embarrassing. Until now he couldn't understand how she had won that game.
"Alright laugh it all up. You might not laugh again for a long time after I win this game. Because you really want me to grow up this year I am going to grant your wish. I will be spending the whole school year with only one girl whom I will love dearly if and only if… you'll start dating a guy."
Sarah eyes widened like a socket. "What? Are you kidding me? I never had a boyfriend before you know that. I can't do it. You are crossing way too far from my boarder line Matthew Sebastian MacLlaegan."
"If I have to grow up so do you and dating guys is the way. We're going to be college next year. Learn to blend in."
"Oh Sarah you have disappointed me," said Matthew as he shook his head sardonically. "I thought you never back away in games we play. I thought chickening out is not in your vocabulary."
Sarah thought for a moment. This is a huge step ahead of her plans. Having a boyfriend has never come across her mind these years. She bit her lower lip and said, "What are the consequences first?"
Matthew paused for a moment. "Well I was thinking that if I win you will be spending the rest of the year doing my assignments and if you win I'll be doing yours."
"Hey that's unfair!" protested Sarah. "I'm a straight A student and you're not. You only get A's in your assignments because I let you copy my answers. If I win you're going to ruin my records."
"Fine," said Matthew. "You think then."
Sarah thought for a moment. The consequence should involve sacrifice to make it more thrilling. Also if the consequence would be too risky Matthew might back away. After some time she looked at him and said, "The winner will have to shave the loser's hair with any shape he or she wants."
Matthew's jaw dropped. His hair is one of the most important things in his body. It's the main attraction to the girls he courts. Its blonde color shines perfectly under the sun. He cares so much about it that he always carries a comb and a mirror with him to check if his hair is fine. He stared at Sarah for a moment thinking of how determined she is on what she just said and he saw it. There is no single hesitation in her eyes. Her hair is his favorite thing in her body. Her long brown hair shines up to her breast dancing in her shoulders ever time she walks making her more beautiful. If she'll lose he will be forced to cut it short but then sacrificing something special is a great twist in the game. "Fine. May the best man win."
Sarah shook his hand and said, "May the best woman win."