"You look pathetic," Pinball said to Nickels. She lifted her red, puffy eyes to meet Pinball's criticizing face.
Nickels sneered. "Gee, thanks."
"Why are you here anyway? I didn't invite you."
"Nice to know I'm appreciated," she said, taking a seat on Nickels' bed. "I came here to tell you to stop crying. You see, being the god person that I am, I decided that it would be a good idea to come and tell you to shut the fuck up. What you're crying over isn't important."
"Not that important?! He killed Pucks! How in the living, breathing, blue, and green world do you not think that's important?"
Pinball shrugged. "I just don't."
For one to fully understand what was happening here, they would have to go all the way back to the beginning of this year, all the way back to January. Back when Pucks was still alive and back when Nickels had just met the boy she was currently angry at, Daniel Withers.
"So, um, do you have, like, a phone number, or something?" a scrawny boy asked Nickels. They sat in some random Italian restaurant on a date. Nickels was incredibly bored but she agreed to go on the date out of pity. Her best friend, Pinball, had told her that she should be nicer to people sometimes. "People are overrated," she had told Pinball on that day but when she turned around, there stood this scrawny boy with a folded up piece of paper. He had thrown it at her and nervously scattered away. When Nickels had unfolded it, with Pinball peering over her shoulder, she saw that it had read:
Please go on a date with me, Nickles. PLEASE? Circle your answer and slip it into locker 238. Yes or No. ~Harold, your future date
Nickels sighed under Pinball's watchful gaze, circled yes and slipped it into his locker on the way to class.
Was scrawny Harold desperate? Yes. But Pinball had presented an entire speech about giving back to the less fortunate and how it was Nickels' duty to go on a date with scrawny Harold. As charity, of course. It definitely was not a real date--he spelled her name wrong.
Nickels looked as scrawny Harold as if he was a pestering younger sibling, which she felt as if he was. "I should've never let Pinball convince me to do this," she muttered to herself yet still loud enough to allow him to hear. She stood up and picked up her jacket and purse. "A couple of things: you're a fucking wimp, you're paying for the bill, and this was not a date, not a real one anyway." She picked up the last slice of pizza and looked him in the eye. "By the way, you spelled my name wrong in that shit note," she said before walking out of the restaurant.
Deciding the pizza was not even that good, she threw it away and pulled her jacket tighter around her body before finding a stand selling coffee. It was the beginning of the year so it was freezing cold which Nickels hated.
"You're a bitch," she heard. Immediately se raised her head, expecting to see some angry face glaring at her. Due to her practice of radical honesty, she has become rather accustomed to being called a bitch.
"None of that is your damn business!" she heard from the same voice. Nickels looked around to try to to find the source of the voice. "Well, keep to your side and I'll keep to mine!"
A man sat on a nearby bench screaming into the small phone he held up to his ear. He was balding, his shiny head reflecting the street lights that were evenly posted along the edge of the sidewalk.
The pudginess and baldness of the aging man gripped Nickels' attention so much so that she didn't notice another man hurrying down the sidewalk until they collided into each other. She had been standing still, involuntarily criticizing the bald man for everything wrong thing in his life that she imagined he had done and the other man was busy talking on his phone and focusing on not dropping the two cups of coffee that he was holding.
The man's face scrunched in immediate anger and Nickels let out an instant scream. Sure, she was cold before but this was certainly not how she had wanted to get warm.
Nickels did not know how to comprehend, let alone know, what just happened. Hot coffee dripped down her skin as it seeped through the white sweater Pinball had loaned to her to wear for tonight's "date".
"What the fuck!" the man shouted. "Are you not going to apologize?"
At this statement, Nickels straightened her stance and looked straight into the man's eyes. Before she could say anything, she recognized him from school--Daniel Withers. He was a rather popular at their school. He wasn't a jock nor a bad boy nor a good boy. He was just some random guy that girls had started to obsess over which had started his rise to high school fame.
Nickels didn't like that at all. She figured that if one was to become popular, it should be for some admirable trait or skill that was unique and should not be duplicated. Being undeniably attractive was, yes, a trait, but it sure as hell wasn't unique. It wasn't like there was a drastic shortage of attractive high school guys.
In all actuality, his "special trait" was that, somehow, he had managed to become more popular than the school's bad boy, despite them being best friends.
She frowned, surprised that general manners towards general people was not one of Daniel's traits that took him up the popularity ladder.
"You crashed into me so I have no reason to apologize. You should be the one saying sorry and, frankly, Daniel Withers, I am astonished that you aren't a lot nicer considering how popular you are at school."
The frown on his face now matcher hers as he was confused on why this girl, who he didn't know but who apparently knew him, decided that it was okay to talk to him like that. If she truly went to school with him then she should know that, if he felt so inclined, he could easily send her social life tumbling down with a simple flick of the wrist. And, sadly for her, he now had a reason to do so. Now only did she make him spill the two hot drinks that he had for his cousin and himself, wasting about twelve dollars that he had just spent, she had also insulted his manners and desperately refused to apologize.
He squinted his eyes at her and asked, "What's your name?"
Nickels squared her shoulders, looked him boldly in the eye, and answered, "Nickels Sumoin."
Daniel let out a loud snort and laughed, throwing his head back, completely forgetting about the coffee staining his shirt and the two empty cups that littered the ground. "What..." he trailed off, releasing an insulting chuckle. "What type of name is that?"
Nickels frowned and crossed her arms. "It's my name," she grumbled.
Daniel straightened his face and quelled his laughter. "You realize that you're only worth, like, five cents?"
Her frown deepened "For one, I would be worth at least ten cents, considering the noticeable s at the end of my name. And two, at least it's unique, unlike the abundance of males of all races sharing your name."
"Wait," he said suddenly, catching Nickels off guard. "I've heard your name before." His face hardened as he pointed an accusing finger at her. "You're the little bitch who my cousin's little heart!"
"I didn't know you cared," she stated calmly.
"You're not even going to apologize for that?" She shook her head as he continued on with his rant. "Because of you, that little fucker texted his mom and she texted my mom and my mom texted me, forcing me to come out into this damn cold and buy this expensive-ass coffee, that you spilled, and bring it to that little fucker for free!" As he finished his enraged rant, he became angrier and angrier with her as she didn't say anything. Now he had another reason to destroy her social life.
"If you're expecting me to apologize then you're wasting your time. He was unattractive and wimpy and, in all honesty, I was, in no way, interested in him."
He squinted at her and crossed his arms, a smirk immediately covering his lips. "If you weren't interested then why'd you agree to go on a date with him?"
"Because Pinball made the date into a debate of morality."
He chuckled lightly, watching as the shadows on Nickels shifted with the passing cars. "So you gave the little fucker a pity date?" he clarified. Despite the anger about the large inconvenience she had caused him, he actually found her quite beautiful. He struggled with trying to determine the color of her light-toned hair in the lighting they were standing in.
She nodded her head without hesitation, confirming his clarification. "Yes. Pinball convinced me to do it out of charity to make him feel better about himself."
"But you left him. You made him feel worse."
"Well, I didn't want to lie to him and tell him that I enjoyed his company. All that would is boost his fragile ego, meaning he would come back to me in hopes of a relationship or go off to another girl with a false ego and a confidence built upon lies."
Daniel raised his eyebrows as he analyzed the beautiful girl standing in front of him. "Wow, you're genuinely crazy," he commented to himself.
She sighed, ran a hand through her hair, and pulled out her phone to check the time. "Look, I'm not crazy. It's getting late and I have to get home."