All Just For a Scholarship

A Scar at the Pool

My moment of frankly wicked glee ended as I strolled around the school grounds. "What could I do now?" I started pondering, the lessons were over for the day and I had no desire to head for the Old Vale (Considering every occasion I am there, Gary seems to clap thunder over me, could one truly blame me?).
One suggestion that crept into my head was the idea of meeting Erica, though that was a horrible idea on two grounds: one was the fact that Mr Burton had already got me beaten up for being a 'pervert' and I had no wish to engage such a situation Burton or otherwise, two was the fact that I wasn't even sure Erica had genuinely accepted my explanation.

I proceeded to sit on the wall which split the boy's dorm from the rest of the school, gazing over the retreating pupils, leaving their schooling behind for rest or shopping or whatever you would normally do post-lessons. I observed the prefects wrestling the rowdy and the smaller portion of pupils dancing around giants, desperately searching for a foothold to reclaim their object hanging over them.
I sighed, "Just three more passes and a couple of more school days and I'll be out of here." I then turned to see Algie getting harassed by a bulky Greaser, the Greaser kicking Algie to the ground. To my amazement, out of the blue charges Russell, who promptly lifts the Greaser and plants him, face first into a nearby garbage bin. "It looks like they are getting along well." I stated, watching Russell lift Algie back onto his feet.

A meow grasped my attention as I watched the portly, almost masculine cafeteria lady Edna chases a cat with a comically large net. As the cat strafes around its pursuer, I catch a better glimpse of the cat...black scruffy fur...could it be Kurokai?
Seeing no harm in finding out, I leapt off the wall and followed Edna as she shouted, "Get back here ya little stray, if you don't get here right now I'll cook ya before I kill ya!" I then began planning; ok you have one faculty member and a stray cat. Your objective is to save the stray cat from said faculty.
"Now how am I going to do that?" I pondered, suddenly a strain of thought snapped, unleashing the words of Earnest "...prefects NEVER come into the boy's dorm..." rang past my mind. I then felt my fire crackers in my pocket stabbing into my leg.

Bingo.

As though on an inaudible whistle, I pulled out a cracker and lit the cracker's fuse, then without hesitation I tossed it under Edna, the explosion threw the dinner lady up and crash on to her back. I then hurdle jumped over Edna and captured the stray, yup it was Kurokai, just as I thought.
"GET BACK HERE YOU LITTLE RAT! I'LL HAVE YOU PUNISHED FOR THIS!" I heard the recovered Edna shriek, immediately I rushed towards the boy's dorm as I heard the tidal wave of Prefects chase me. Just as I felt the breath of prefects' centimetres from catching me, the breathing gave way for excessive breathing.
"Jeez you guys need to exercise your stamina more!" I mocked as I slipped into the boy's dorm; I began bursting into uncontrollable fits of cackling as I heard Adriana holler "DAMN IT!"

Oblivious to the multitude of odd gazes and snorts I received from my peers as I sat near the television with Kurokai in my hands, I noticed a parchment of paper tucked under Kurokai's collar.
"Well my little feline acquaintance, what have you got there?" I asked, slipping the paper from between the dozing cat and his collar. I folded out the paper as I then gazed upon the text, it read:

"Dear John,

Meet me at the pool at 9pm and come alone

PS: bring suitable swimming attire"

"Looks like someone just became a messenger kitty huh Kurokai?" I chuckled, stroking the now fully asleep cat. I then began to think, "It's most likely Erica, judging by the handwriting and the fact that it came from Kurokai. But what would she want from me at the pool? Does she want to talk to me over Lola? Or is it-"
I stuffed the paper in my pocket and carried Kurokai into my sleeping quarters. Plumping Kurokai on my bed, I then scavenged for my swimming trunks. After digging through countless articles of clothing and conveniently enough a towel, I pulled out my swimming trunks.
Looking at the time, I then proceeded to roll my green trunks into my white towel and rush out of the building and tossed Kurokai out. "Sorry Kurokai, you better get back to Erica's room, bye!" I exclaimed as I rushed away to the Gym.

I crept into the Gym through the basketball court entrance, gently closing the door behind me. I then balanced the towel on my foot and with a stroke of my chin, I started thinking. "Ok, what if this is a trap then Daniels? What are you going to do?" I rummaged through my pockets and withdrew my fire crackers and matches. "Great! Shame they don't work underwater though." A brain cell in my head sneered. Regardless I kicked the towel back up under my arm and walked into the boys' changing room. Slipping into my trunks, I then walked out of the room and headed for the swimming pool.
As I stood at the pool edge, I saw nothing but a large body of water. Nobody was lingering up on the stands; no-one was around by the pool, heck I couldn't see a single soul hiding in the bottom of the pool. What was going on here? Did someone set me up?
At that moment, I felt a force shoving me forward, unable to keep balance; I slipped and dove into the pool. As I sank low to the bottom of the water, I saw the distorted figure that stood over me. I grinned as I saw the reflection's long pink hair, it was Erica! I sprung from the ground and grabbed Erica who had crouched over the pool edge, and then pulled Erica under!
After a moment, we broke to the surface and looked at each other, Erica had wore the different swimsuit from the one she wore this afternoon, this one was sky blue with pink trims around the hip area, it was a complete stark contrast to my plain green trunks.
I broke the silence, "Look Erica, I want you to know that, err..." I stammered.
Erica smiled and swam towards me, "John you've already told me, remember? You told me that nothing happened between you and Lola."
I intervened, "Well th-that, but that was not what I wanted to say. Erica...you are a shining light against all the shadows that haunt me." I then clasped her hand with my own, "Your long hair, your soft skin, your flawless smile...no girl of any proportions could make me say the following but you Erica: I love you!"

Erica blushed, it seemed as though she had not expected me to say such remarks, perhaps more expecting something about her hips or her-
"John" Erica replied, "you have been the closest friend I could ever get. You are so cute when you smile" she grinned.
I gasped, "Wa-wait, I said the exact-"I began before Erica submerged once more, dragging me down into the water, once we both levelled at the bottom of the water, Erica reached over to me and pressed her lips to mine, the sweet sensation buzzed the back of my skull as I kissed Erica back, we continued to hold onto our moment, the pool was a bubble of utopia, our escape from the thuggish reality. It would take something truly malevolent to break up our time.

Then two people walked into the Gym. Splitting our kiss, I signalled Erica to stay while I swam back up to the surface.
I broke the surface and observed the individuals creep up the stairs where they began their conversation on the balcony. I spotted one grinning with a scar across his eye.

Gary Smith.

I dived back down quietly and brought Erica back up slowly, hoping to bypass Gary and his associate without being caught.
Lady Luck, I despise thee.
As soon as we rose to the surface, Erica, unaware of the situation, inhaled loudly, causing Gary to turn and spot us. I pushed Erica first out of the water and attempted to clamber out myself, only to have Gary's comrade to fire a spud straight at my temple, blurring my vision and causing me to drop.
As I fell to the bottom, I heard the muffled cries of Erica as the two assailants I believe began to restrain her. Coming to, I launched myself out and climbed to land, only to see Gary walk out with a gagged Erica over his shoulder, I attempted to follow but the individual pulled out his spud gun and pointed it at me.
"Don't even move" the offender squeaked, I looked closer as saw the young man was wearing a pink jumper under his sweater vest.
I blinked, "Wait, you're-"I began, then the boy fired another spud into my gut and fled. In spite of being winded, I tried to follow them, only to straggle behind and fail to catch sight of them as I opened the door.
"No..." I wheezed, my breath strained by the punch of that last shot, "Erica...no..." I continued to pant, Gary Smith...and that former Head Boy...they...they kidnapped Erica!

I rushed back to my clothes, a swift scrub and change as I ran around the school, hoping that I could at least catch a glimpse of the kidnappers leaving. I was distraught to learn I had failed; too late I was to save Erica.
"Why...why Erica? Erica has nothing to do with this Gary, you...you...BASTARD!" I roared outside of the school entrance, as the image of Erica in distress, vulnerable and defenceless left me in chocked up tears.

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