"Oh my God!" I shriek, "It's 7:30!"
I jump out of bed and try to get ready in five minutes before the late bell at 7:45.
"Five more minutes," Scott mumbles and covers himself with the blanket.
"We're going to be late!" I yell from the adjoining bathroom.
I furiously wash my face while brushing my teeth at the same time.
"Does it matter?" Scott yawns as he lazily leans on the side of the door.
"Yes it does! This is my second late already. If I get another one, I'll get detention! I don't get detentions!" I frantically run around grabbing everything that I need.
"Whatever, I'm going back to bed. I'm skipping first period, so see you later," he snuggles back into the blankets.
"You are not skipping first period," I throw the blankets off of him.
"Bite me," he glares at me.
"You're. Going. To. School."
"It's 7:37," He reminds me.
"Shit!" I scream and look for my backpack.
"You know, you could just," he hugs me from behind whispers in my ear, "skip first period with me."
"No," I try to shake him off, but he holds tightly on to me. "Come on, we have to go to school," I struggle.
"We have gym first period, and you hate gym," he coaxes me by placing light kisses around my neck.
"We have to—" I gasp when he nips on my earlobe and then runs his tongue over the bite. I feel his tongue teasing me as he sensually draws shapes on my stomach. I couldn't help but let out a moan. I could feel my resolve crumbling.
I really do hate gym.
"Well, I guess one time is okay," I say breathlessly.
He lifts me up and carries me bridal style to the bed.
You could say that my mornings are a lot more eventful than others, but it's solely because I'm married to the most popular guy in school. Yes. I'm married. It wasn't for religious reasons, and neither of us was forced into it like some melodrama. We're just your average married couple that just happens to be in high school.
After our wedding, Scott and I are enjoying the newlywed life in an apartment close enough to the school. No parents. No curfew. No supervision.
I wait in the car so that we can both go to school even though we missed first period. It's not like we should just ditch for the entire day. I impatiently keep staring at the time, waiting for Scott to come out. Sometimes I feel like he takes longer than any girl.
After a couple of songs on the radio, Scott finally comes out of the house with his dark brown hair all wet from a quick shower. Even though I am married to him, I can't help but admire his figure. He is wearing the typical jock fashion of sweatpants and a t-shirt. On other guys, it looks sloppy, but Scott pulls off the casual jock look.
My eyes naturally follow him as he walks over to the car. He opens the door and sits in the driver seat before driving off. Once we're on the road, Scott comfortably drives with one hand while he rests his other hand on the armrest expectantly. I smile at the small gesture and hold his hand during the car ride like we always do.
"I'll see you later at home," I reach over to kiss him on the cheek as we both arrive in the school parking lot.
Even though we're both an hour late for school, we leave separately from the car to avoid suspicion. In order to avoid anyone knowing about our relationship, we've decided to retain a nonexistent relationship in school. Brielle Alvarez and Scott Alvarez do not know each other.
As I leave the attendance office, the familiar bell rings. Time to go to math. I blend into the crowd of students and walk into my Calculus classroom.
"Where have you been?" my best friend, Rachel asks.
Rachel Holland has been my best friend ever since freshman year in Ms. Jones' Honors Geometry class. Although she is my best friend, she does not know anything about my marriage. There have been times I really wanted to tell her, but I know Rachel. She can't keep a secret even if her life depended on it.
"Oh, I had a doctor's appointment this morning."
Rachel nods her head in acknowledgement but just as she was about to respond, our math teacher, Ms. Turner begins the class.
After two more periods, I walk over to the cafeteria to grab some lunch. I look over and see Rachel waving to show where she and the rest of our friends are seated. I walk over and take a seat with all of them.
"You know it's only just September, yet why do we have so much work already?" Rachel complains.
"It doesn't really help that we have college apps too," my good friend Mei sighs. With large brown eyes and petite Asian body, she looks just like the cute anime girls. Although she looks cute, Mei could easily take down anyone four times her size.
Even though it's lunch, Mei has an essay out on the table. Rachel has what looks like her trial booklet, and Stella is busy looking through some history notes. I'm not any better cause I have my planner, and Biology notes for a test next period. We're overachievers, and proud of it.
"What's that?" I ask her.
"It's my application essay. I'm gonna ask Ms. Goldstein to look over it," Mei says.
"The librarian?" Stella, who've I've been close with ever since our English class read, A Streetcar Named Desire. She's been schmoozing teachers for years now and lights up at the opportunity of creating another close network within the school. Because of her close relationships with teachers, she has been able to gain valuable information as the news editor of the Paper Plane.
"Yeah," Mei replies, "She's actually really good at looking over papers, and she's really chill."
"Senior year sucks. I thought we're supposed to have the time of our life," Rachel pouts.
"How can we when we have all these tests and college apps?" Stella asks.
"At least, there's always delightful eye candy to enjoy from our table," Rachel says with a sly grin.
I roll my eyes, but she's right. From our table, we have clear view of the entire senior cafeteria, but most importantly, we have a great view of the jock table a.k.a. the hottest boys in the school. Naturally, Scott sits with the rest of his friends while joking around with them.
"Scott looks especially good today," Rachel sighs. The worst part of having friends who know nothing about your love life is when they pine after your husband.
"Yeah," Stella agrees with her. "I wouldn't mind studying with him all day." Trust me. You don't. Scott doesn't study. I don't think I've ever really seen him study, but he would always be tapping away on his laptop working on something.
"What are you talking about?" Rachel says, "I would rather study him than study with him." All of my friends giggle together, but I can't help but the feeling of jealousy and possessiveness rises. I'm so close to yelling, "He's mine bitches! Back off!" when luckily Tracy Wu, my marvelous co-editor-in-chief for the high school paper approaches me.
"Hey, Brielle," Tracy greets me with a curt nod while gripping a plastic container of salad tightly. Rachel grimaces at Tracy's presence. She never liked Tracy because of her cold demeanor that makes her come off as a bitch, but I think she's just misunderstood. Tracy and I have been on the paper ever since freshman year, and I've come understand that it's just a wall that she creates in front of others.
"Hey, Tracy," I say warmly while my friends silently bite into their lunch. "What's up?"
"Can you do that feature on Brian Henderson?" she asks me straight to the point.
"Wasn't Frank supposed to do it?" I ask her, not liking the direction of this conversation whatsoever. Dear Tracy never bothers with small talk.
"Yeah, but the freshman dropped last second due to his inability to acclimate to his new high school surroundings," she sighs.
"I think he's being a little bitch," I grumble. A problem with freshman is that they always think that their problems are just so apocalyptic. "Can no one else do it?" I ask her.
I'd rather not have to be in charge of this interview because of two reasons. One, I have way too much on my plate right now. Two, Scott hates Brian. There are two things that you need to know about Gregory High. First, Scott Alvarez and Brian Henderson rule the school as soccer and football captain. Two, they do not get along. Scott has been telling me how nasty Brian Henderson is for the past three years. I'd rather not have to interview that asshole.
"All the writers are all assigned to articles, and the editors are swamped with getting used to being in charge of their own sections. I can't do it cause I'm swamped with school work." I nod my head understandingly. Even though we, seniors, had a lot on their plates right now, Tracy had an unimaginable workload that makes me dizzy just thinking about it. As the potential valedictorian, A.P. classes for every subject. To be honest, I don't even know how she manages to juggle between schoolwork and paper duties.
"Fine, I'll do it," I sigh in defeat.
"Great. You should probably tell him ASAP to do an interview cause it's production week," Tracy says and turns around to sit with her friends. I groan at the thought. Production week is the busiest week for us in the month when we put everything together into paper.
"There's no time like the present," I grumble and get up from the table before my friends can start talking about how they wish they were the ones interviewing Brian. Being as straightforward as Tracy, I walk straight up to table right next to Scott's in order to ask Brian Henderson for an interview. I try to keep my confident façade as I tread through unfamiliar territory and confused faces look up at me.
"Brian?" I interrupt a conversation he's having with his buddy.
"Yeah?" he raises his eyebrow at seeing a mysterious girl walk up to him. Not like it's the first time he's seen a girl walk up to him. Seeing him face to face, I notice how electrifying his blue eyes are that I can't stop staring into them.
"Hi, my name's Brielle Alvarez, and I'm part of the Paper Plane," I introduce myself confidently without folding under the heavy gazes on my back. "I'm working on this feature called Athlete of the Month, and I was wondering if you were free some time to do the interview."
"Oh yeah," he says good-naturedly. "Xavier told me about it. I was wondering when someone would ask me for an interview."
"Yeah," I say, still maintaining a cool composure. "The writer who was supposed to do this backed out us last second. So, is there any time you could do it tomorrow?"
"Tomorrow," he looks hesitant.
"Yep. We're a little crunched on time, and I can do the interview any time," I push a little more. I don't want to wait to do this interview any longer than I have to. Plus, I didn't want to conduct the interview at his whim.
"I have practice till five tomorrow. Is five-thirty good with you?" he pushes his short blonde up from his face.
"Okay," I tell him, while trying to hide my victorious smile. "I'll see you tomorrow."
"See you tomorrow, Brielle," he says.
When I return back to my table, I'm attacked with inquisitive looks begging for every detail. "Your ballsiness really amazes me, Gabrielle Rosen Alvarez," Rachel says.
"What?" I ask defensively.
"I can't believe that right after Tracy asked you to do the article you just up and talk to Brian Henderson," Rachel says.
"What?" I ask again, taken aback. He's just Brian Henderson, not the President of the United States.
"I would never in a million years just walk up to the guy while the entire cafeteria's watching."
"The entire cafeteria was watching?" I ask incredulously.
"Uh… yeah," Stella says.
"I don't understand why everyone thinks it's a big deal," I huff. "I mean, it's not like he doesn't shit like the rest of us."
"I actually shit diamonds," a male voice says from behind me. My eyes widen in shock. Don't tell me that Brian Henderson is right behind me.
As if I were in a horror film, I slowly turn my head around to see a smirking Brian Henderson. Why does the universe have to put me in such situations?
"Hi, Brian," I laugh nervously. There goes that cool, confident image that I tried to establish in front of Brian.
"Hey, Brielle," he smiles back as if I weren't talking about his bowel movement. "I just came over to tell you that I might have to do the interview at six."
"Six? Of course," I blurt out without checking if I'm busy then.
"Okay, I'll see you then," he says with the ghost of a laugh and walks back to his table.
"Sometimes, I wonder if you're blessed by the universe or cursed," Mei muses.
"What's that supposed to mean?" I ask her.
My phone vibrates in my pocket. I check my phone to see that Scott sent me a text, Stairwell now.
"Jeez, I think that Katie wants me to come over to her locker," I lie, while Mei is in the middle of her explanation. "I'll see you guys later," I quickly pack my stuff to meet Scott.
"I'm going with blessed," I hear Stella say as I walk away from the table.
I briskly walk out of the cafeteria and enter the dark auditorium that is usually empty. I enter through the side entrance where actors would usually walk through during costume changes that is behind the curtain. It's a perfect hiding spot that Scott discovered where we would meet during school. Just as I step onto the dimply lit backstage, Scott pulls me through the doors and to the corner behind the stairs where no one can see us.
"Oh my god!" I scream in surprise as someone hugs me from behind.
I smell Scott's familiar musky smell as he shushes me before I scream something loudly again.
"You scared the crap out of me," I seethe as I grip his arms tightly.
"It's just me," he chuckles and snuggles his head into the crook of my neck. I smile at the close contact that reminds me that we're indeed together even though we're inside the school walls.
After enjoying a few moments of silence together I ask him softly, "Why'd you call?"
"I was just wondering why my dear wife was talking to Henderson," he says in a deceptively nonchalant tone.
"Oh," I say if I got my hand caught inside the cookie jar. "You mean Brian Henderson?"
"Yes, Brian Henderson," Scott says.
"It was not a big deal," I shrug, trying to play off the entire interaction. "I have to do a feature on him, and I just asked him for an interview. I hate to admit it, but as much as his jealousy annoys me, it's reassuring, like Scott thinks about me during the day.
"Why do you have to interview him?"
"A writer bailed on us, and no one else can do it," I explain to him.
"There's always someone else who can do it," he says unreasonably.
I turn around and cup his face. His eyebrows are furrowed together in annoyance as his brown eyes narrowed whenever he believed I was about to start trouble. "I said I'd do it, Scott," I stroke his arm to calm him down.
He stares right back at me as if trying to figure out what to say in order to dissuade me. Once I set my mind in doing something, Scott has never been able to stop me, but he's always supported me no matter how things got. Scott hangs his head on my shoulder in defeat, "I don't want you alone with him."
"I won't," I reassure him but mentally cross my fingers. I play with his soft brown hair that is cut short. A smile creeps on my face at the feeling of Scott so close to me. "You know I love you, right?" I say softly.
"For now?" he asks me just like I did the first night he confessed.
"Forever," I answer him just like he did all those years ago.