Chapter 1: Secrets
Why do you want to know this story? Why do you want to know mine? A story like mine where it's just lies piled on top of secrets. Life ruining and life changing secrets. But if you really wanna know, who better to tell than you?
It's Wednesday as I look up at my high school, Midtown Science. I never liked the name, it was too odd sounding. I'm only attending here because my mother is making me. Truth be told I don't want to be a scientist like most of these students here, I don't know what I want to be.
I stood here frozen in front of the school, and no it is not my first day. I've attended this school for the past three years and one an a half months. I've never noticed how small it looked on the outside, it certainly felt bigger inside. Who am I kidding, I'm just stalling--
"Standing outside won't make the test go away," interrupting my train of thought, I heard a voice in my ear. When I turned to see who it was I saw Gwen in her lab coat. She had her black headband in her blonde hair. Mine use to be blonde when I was a child, but as I got older it turned brownish-black. Talk about weird genes.
"No, but at least I can miss it," I responded to her comment.
"So you can just take it tomorrow?"
"I'll have more time to study," I said as we started to walk into the building. It was two minutes until class started. Tragically, our Calculus Honors class was on the first level near the offices.
"Who are you kidding, Jessica, we both know you still wouldn't study if given an extra day," Gwen teased. Well, it was true.
"No, but I could've gone back to bed."
"And leave me here alone? Very selfish."
I smiled at her, "I'm selfish, she says."
"Come on, you'll do fine on the test."
"Says Midtown Science High's number one in class," she laughs as we step into the classroom. I took my seat by the window near the back. I liked my seat, no one bothered me. I'm not much of one for chatter, except to Gwen, but she sat a few seats in front of me.
I sometimes wondered how she put up with me. I wasn't the life of the party, I wasn't a genius like her, I wasn't even popular like that pig, Flash. I was nothing. If anything I was infamous. By that I mean I was know to be a bit of a trouble maker. I never started anything like bullying "nerdy" people, I ended things like picking on bullies.
Of course I was always to blame, I was this devil while everyone else was an angel. What can you do? Bullies can't change and neither can I. My teacher, Mr. Cranston, took roll call.
"Here," the boy raised his hand.
"Here," the girl said smugly. She combed her straight, brown hair behind her ear. Liz was such a bitch just sitting there in her cheerleader outfit. Ever since we were children she was always shitty to everyone. Her and Gwen use to be best friends in third grade. That was until Liz started making fun of Gwen's braces and called her ugly. When I saw this on the playground I knew I had to get back at her for being so mean to a girl that never did a thing to her. When we got back in class I took a pair of scissors and snipped off one of Liz's pigtails. Needless to say I got sent home early for bad behavior. I did make Liz cry. I guess she didn't like it when I told her she looked ugly.
Snapping back to the present, my teacher called my name after a few people, "Jessica Drew?" He sounded so unsure of himself. He seems to know who everyone else is except me, guess I don't blame him.
"Here," I raised my hand up. He nodded and continued, "Gordon Fincher?"
I can't really say much about my home life. I live with my mom, Miriam. She works in the lab over at St. Mary's Hospital, you know running DNA tests or checking blood, stuff doctors need. She use to be a scientist over at Oscop with my Dad, back when he was alive. My dad died when I was four years old. After he passed away I...well I still miss him. There was a time where I hardly talked to anyone as a kid and that's all I remember from that period. But before, I remember I would go into his office at our old house and ask him what he was doing. He would literally drop everything for me and set me on his desk and ask me about my day. I do remember at times he would take blood out of me, but he just told me it was to make sure I was feeling fine.
"It will be fine sweetie, I just want to make sure you're okay. You never know if something is wrong with you."
"It still hurts," I pouted.
"I know, but what doesn't kill you makes you stronger," he kissed my forehead, "Remember that, Jessica. Remember that."
Way before I was born, my parents lived on Wundagore Mountain in Britain. From the stories I hear from my mom, it was beautiful. They moved to New York when Norman Osborn offered them a job at Oscorp.
Harry just raised his hand, not even saying a word. He doesn't say much in class. Must be his father's doing. Norman Osborn, such a crockpot owning a crockpot company and being the king of all crockpots.
I feel sorry for that son of his, Harry, heir to the crockpot throne. Harry was kicked out of his fancy private school for poor grades. That's why he's going to school here, his dad has to prepare him for the day he takes over Oscorp. Truth be told, Harry does not have a future in science. You can see from the way they act toward one another, the aura they share in pictures, that Norman is always disappointed in his son. He seems like he just down talks him and criticizes him non stop.
Whenever I see Harry, he gives me this look. This ugly, mean look like everything is my fault. He's giving it to me right now. I never did anything to him. He's probably just mad that I didn't bow down to him like everyone else when he got here since he throws crazy parties when his dad is gone. I treated him like everyone else.
"Peter Parker?" Mr. Cranston looked around for a hand, but saw nothing except an empty desk next to mine. I can't really say I talk to Peter Parker. I never really noticed him, then again, I hardly don't pay attention to anything, not since my father died.
"Peter-?" The door opened and a hunched over boy entered. He had this brown Ramones shirt on with a hoodie and greenish jacket over that. He carried a skateboard with him and his back pack seemed full. A camera was dangling from around his neck. He looked sweaty like he's been running. I have to say though, he was rather cute, genuine and I can't believe I have never noticed him sitting next to me until right now. Did I really shut out everyone?
"I'm here," he was trying to get his breathing under control. Mr. Cranston looked over to him and shrugged, "You're late, Mr. Parker, again."
"I know, I'm sorry. I was in a tight space," he looked right at Flash when he said that. Flash snickered to himself. He probably locked him up in the janitor's closet, the jerk. Good thing Stan was a nice guy to get him out.
Peter shook his head, "Go have a seat Mr. Parker so I can finish up roll call." Peter was walking down the aisle making his way over to his seat.
He was careful not to step on anyone's backpacks.
Peter was getting closer.
"Present," Gwen raised her hand lightly.
Flash stuck out his foot just when Peter passed him by causing the boy to trip and face plant the floor. Everyone laughed, everyone except Gwen and me. I think Harry too.
"Settle down," the teacher said. Peter sort of remained on the floor for a moment.
"Watch where you're going, Parker!" Flash mocked.
"Zip it. Are you okay, Peter?"
Peter stood up and went to sit down in his seat laying his face in his arms. I looked over to Flash who slowly stopped laughing.
My blood was starting to boil the more I looked at that pretty boy, obnoxious, 'I can do what I want' face. I clutched my notebook in my hands.
Flash raised his hand just as I threw my notebook at his buzzed shaved head. I was scowling at him when he turned to look at me, "What the hell, freak?"
"Watch your head, Flash. Wouldn't want your IQ lower than it is."
"Do i have to write someone up?" Mr. Cranston looked right at me.
"You can write Flash up," I shrugged at my suggestion.
"Are you kidding me? She just through a textbook at my head!"
"You threw a textbook?"
"Notebook!" I corrected.
"Why would you throw a notebook at Mr. Thompson's head, Ms. Drew?"
Peter looked up from his arms to see me. I locked eyes with him for a second and turned back to Mr. Cranston, "Because he's an asshole," I said bluntly.
Mr. Cranston turned and got out his Dean Referral pad and began to write. Awesome...in the least possible way.
"Assault and Profanity will not be allowed in here. You will have to take the test another day. Right now, head to the Dean's, Jessica."
I sighed, grabbed my green backpack, stood up and walked up to get the slip. I turned back to see Gwen have this cringed look. She always hates it when I get in trouble. I did steal a glance at Peter and he smiled at me right before I walked out the door.
I sat outside the Dean's office waiting until she was done with whatever student that was inside. I gave a nod to the secretary at the desk. I wish I could tell you this was the first time I've been up here, but that's not the life I'm living. Like I said before, I am a trouble maker, but I am always justified with what I do.
The door opened up and a tall, chubby kid with a mohawk came out followed by a blonde woman, "Next time, think before you damage school property, Kong." She turned and saw me sitting, "Ms. Drew, why are you up her for the fourth time this year? It's only October."
"I can't seem to stay out of trouble."
"Get in here," she took a step back so I could get through. I sat in the seat and read her metal name plate.
"Ms. Carol Danvers. Dean."
Next to it was a picture of her much younger in the Air Force next to a jet, "What did you do this time, Jessica?"
"I threw a notebook at Flash Thompson's head then said he was an asshole to the teacher."
Ms. Danvers tried to be serious, but couldn't help but laugh, "A notebook really?" I nodded, "Why not a dictionary while you're at it?"
"I thought about it."
She chuckled. Ms. Danvers was never really strict with me and I never understood why. She's always been friendly. She was young and beautiful, but that is not all she way. This woman had a hardened strength to her. Carol was probably mid to late twenties. My only question about her, how on earth did she get a job here for four years if she just laughs off what I do? Maybe because she knew Flash was a bully and I didn't like them.
Her tone did get a little more serious, "Come on though, why'd you do it? Did he say something mean to Gwen?"
"He tripped this kid, Peter Parker."
"The one that has a stack of Tardy passes?"
"Yeah," she nodded her head, "I didn't know you were friends with him."
"I'm not. To be honest, I just noticed he existed today."
"All these bullies," she said, "They won't mean a thing one day because High School is only for four years in your lifetime. It's less than a hair thickness to what's really a head of you," she rolled her eyes at how lame school was, "After this year, I'm outta this place and on to better things I could do with my time and so will you. So don't get stuck here, Jessica."
"Thanks," I slightly smiled.
Carol sighed, "Well, I am going to have to give you detention. Do you want to so it today or tomorrow?"
"Can I not do it at all?" Ms. Danvers wagged a finger at me, "Now, now, you did throw a textbook."
"Whatever," Ms. Danvers shrugged. I sighed, "Let's do it today so I can get it over with."
"Spoken like a true soldier," she typed my name in the computer, "Now, don't you have a test or something that you want to avoid?"
"Yes," I said a little confused. How did she know?
"Then go avoid it elsewhere. I have to go to give detention to another student," she stood up and handed me the slip back to class, "Send in the next kid."
"See you around, Ms. Danvers," I said shutting the door.
I looked and saw a freshmen boy looking nervous that he was here, "Ask her about the Air Force, she'll go easy on you after," I told him. The kid looked up and smiled at me, "Thanks."
I walked around the hallways and looked at the club pictures. I saw Gwen in her Debate Team photo. She tried to get me to join once, but I respectfully declined.
"Do you wanna join the Debate Team?"
Peter took this picture, and all the other club photos. Jesus, is he the only photographer here? I shook my head and continued to walk down the hall back to Calculus.
The bell rung when I got here, flooding the halls with students. Gwen was one of the first out and she quickly hurried to me, "Did you get in big trouble?"
I shrugged, "I got detention, but I didn't get a "be a better person" lecture. You know how Danvers is." Gwen nodded, "I'm just glad you haven't gotten suspended or expelled in the past years."
"Hey, this school can't get rid of me that easily. I'm trying though." We walked into our Biology II class. Only other person I know here other than Gwen is Harry, but I never do talk to him, "If you left this school, who's gonna throw a textbook at Flash?"
"Notebook! Why is everyone getting that wrong? They are making the situation much worse than it actually is. This is how the game telephone works! Next rumor you'll hear is that I threw my backpack or an English book at him."
Gwen started to laugh when we got to our lab stations, "I swear when you explain things it's funnier then it needs to be."
"You thought I was being funny?" I took out a piece of paper. The board read "Genes". Gwen leaned to me, "You know you don't have to do all this fighting and throwing things."
"I can't help it. I don't like bullies."
She smiled, "You're starting to sound like Captain Steve Rogers from our history books."
I smiled at probably the nicest compliment I've gotten all year. When the bell rung my teacher, Mr. McDonald, came to the board, "Open the books to page one thirty-eight."
When I opened it I saw the classic DNA strand as the opening picture for the chapter, "Today and tomorrow we will be learning about where you come from. We will learn why you look the way you look, act the way you act, think the way you think."
Gwen whispered in my ear, "Maybe we can find out your hatred of people."
"We will learn why you are you and will always be you. It is said that everything we will ever do or achieve is written in our genes already."
I thought on that. Why am I the way I am. I wish I could be like Gwen, she knows exactly where she comes from, what she wants to be, and where she wants to go in life. There's just a lot of mystery to piece together who I am as a person. I feel like I can't really move forward without knowing actual history. My mom's not a lot of help there. Every time I ask about my dad or her life before me, I get shut out. That's not really fair. What is she hiding from me? I felt my hands stick to the table's surface.
Okay, I will let you in on a little secret though. Ever since I was three years old, I could stick to walls. Like a spider. Yeah, uh-huh. I can climb up walls, be upside down on a ceiling like that annoying spider in the corner of your room right now. I'm just kidding about that spider in the corner of your room... he's under your bed.
This may be a shock to you right now and you're probably thinking, "Hold on. Where did this superpower non sense come from?" Well, I'm not going to come right out and tell you I can climb walls. I had to trust you first.
Anyway, that's not all I can do. I'm immune toxins and radiations, so drugs have no have no effect on me. I'm also rather more agile, faster, and some what stronger than the average human. Now don't go and tell me I should join some sports team, no way. Not happening. All of my high school life I have avoided that because of the things I can do. I can't keep control of my powers sometimes, they go nuts! Like now!
The only person who knows of this is my mother. My father knew back when he was alive. In fact that's why he stuck needles in my a lot. He wanted to see what exactly was going on in my body. I remembered I'd try to ask my mom about these powers and all she would say was, "You were born that way."
I know that wasn't the entire truth. Again, she's keeping things from. I don't know why.
As I sat here with my hands sticking to the table, I attempted to focus. My paper was blank and there was like ten notes I had to write down. I started to get frustrated about these stupid random episodes.
Mr. McDonald came to me when he saw how my face was panicking. "Jessica are you okay? You haven't written anything down," Gwen looked to me and made a confused face. I looked to her and my hands released the table.
I let out a few breaths, "I'm okay. Can I go to the restroom to wash my face?"
Mr. McDonald nodded, "Sure, just come back."
I got up and went to push my back against the door. I did not want my hands touching anything.
When I was almost to the restrooms I saw Flash walk out of the boy's room and looked right at me, "Hey, Book Chucker."
He came up to me and pushed me against the wall. I clutched up my fists so they wouldn't stick to him, that would be the last thing I need!
"You got a mean throw there. It hurt a little."
"Next time I'll throw harder," I threatened. I didn't like the look he was giving me. It seemed...lustful? "Nice hoodie. I like red," My face got confused.
I glanced down at this old thing. I have literally wore it everyday since freshmen year and no one says a thing about it unless-
I went to look back up at him but his eyes were looking down my pale yellow tank top.
Okay, remember when I was talking about powers? Well, I have another one, but this is one I never like telling anyone about, so feel lucky! I give off this pheromone, it can make men love me or fear me. For women, it just makes them uncomfortable. Puberty was a bitch with this.
Remember when I said that my powers go nuts? Well, this one is the most annoying when it is. You're saying, "How is that annoying, that's a cool superpower?" Well, I can't control how far it goes, who I want it to go to, how long I want it to last, it just spreads like gas. Controlling someone is the least heroic thing to do. And it feels like peeing.
Flash started to lean toward my face so he could kiss me, "Gross!"
I shoved him away with my fists, "Get away from me!" I squeezed by him, "In a few minutes you'll regret everything!" I opened up the restroom door and went to the sink.
I filled my hands up with water and splashed my face. I should have stayed home today. I shouldn't have gotten out of bed and just laid there with Miles. He's lucky he gets to do nothing all day, act cute and be dumb when I come home. I wish I could be cute and dumb for one day like my cat. I let out a breath calming myself. I headed back to class once I was fine.
When I sat down Gwen asked me, "Are you okay?"
"No, I'm Jessica," I smirked. I looked at her and her face was concerned, "I'm fine."
"Do you need to see the nurse? Or counselor?"
"No, I'm fine. Just teenage girl problems," the room was quite when I said that making everything awkward for me. I picked up my pen and started to write down notes.