Chapter Three - She’s back
“Wait, really?” Adonis looks down at me in wonder when he reads my schedule.
My hands ball in my jacket pockets nervously, while I nod my head and my eyes meet his. ‘Yeah, your first period is also mine. But we’re late and Mr Collins is gonna be pissed.’
He lifts his hand up and I step back quickly, thinking he’s going to hit me. Once I meet his eyes I avert them again once I see the confused look on his face as he slowly lowers his hand.
“I... uh.” He stutters.
I look down at my shoes and take a hand out of my jacket pocket, slowly bringing it up to the back of my neck awkwardly, I clear my throat and slowly walk away.
Fuck. That was so stupid.
No, you’re stupid. She says.
I screw my eyes shut as she makes an appearance once again. My eyes watering as she keeps talking.
No wonder people call you a freak.
I whimper quietly as I open my eyes, quickly sidestepping a kid, they walk past and give me a once over and give me a dirty look, making me whimper again.
A hand clamps on my shoulder, making me jump and yelp as they turn me around. “Hey, are you okay?” A deep, calm voice asks.
My head slowly nods, my whimpers getting pushed back down my throat as he comes and stands in front of me. “Are you sure?”
I take a deep breath and sidestep him as I begin to walk to first lesson, English. Mr Collins is gonna be so pissed. The bell went two minutes ago. Shit!
I don’t make the decision to look behind me to make sure he’s following because I can hear his light footsteps following mine, slowly.
As a swing door slams behind us when we walk in a corridor Adonis decides to speak. “Who was that ginger chick? That was so not cool, calling you a freak and that.”
My footsteps stop suddenly, making Adonis bump into my back with a small: “Oomph.” I turn around slowly, sheepishly looking up at him. ‘Sorry.’ I write.
“It’s alright.” He chuckles, he brings his big hand up and runs it through his fluffy hair. His calm eyes meeting mine once they run along my figure. “Can I ask you a question?” He shakes his head once he runs his hand through it again, making me want to run my hand through it.
Adonis has nice fucking hair. His hair is a light brown, his curls just about cover his eyebrows. My dark green eyes follow his eyebrows and they dip down to meet his eyes, the colour of them is a mystery... they’re light enough to be a mix between green and blue but when the light shines on then the green becomes slightly lighter.
When his expression hardens the green disappears and it’s replaced with a hard grey. The type of steel grey that screams not to fuck with him, although you can tell they are carrying something heavy. So heavy that it eats him up inside everyday. I frown once I see the corner of his lips lift up into a smirk.
‘Huh? Sorry, did you say something?’ While I wait for him to read it and respond my thumb goes and pushes down on the base of my fingers, cracking them.
“Yeah, can I ask you a question?”
Should I do it?.. screw it I’m never gonna get the opportunity again.
‘You just did.’ I smile cheekily and give him the piece of paper. He eyes me wearily before taking the piece of paper from me and reading it. My mouth breaks out to a full-blown grin when he sighs and runs his hand down his face.
Why.. was that kind of hot?
I laugh when he turns to me with his eyebrows raised. “Really?” He asks. “How old are you? Five?”
I shake my head and take the paper from him. “No, but you can ask your question now.” I hand him it back while still laughing.
His mysterious eyes read the words on the page and then looks at me. “How did you get those bruises?”
The happy atmosphere dissipates once that question floats out from his mouth, my smile dropping as my body freezes.
Fuck... Fuck, fuck, fuck.
I take the paper from him and spin around. My hands writing out one word. ‘Pass’
I put the paper on a nearby heater and walk away, not caring if he catches up or not.
Why didn’t I think he’d ask that question? What the hell?
Because you’re stupid. She says.
Get fucked! Honestly, I don’t need you right now! I try to fight back as I push open another door, walking through and letting it swing back.
Oh, and who do you need? Dad? Because yeah. Dad’s totally gonna help you. She replied as my feet make contact with the stairs.
Once I get to a small clearing halfway up the stairs, I put my hand on the window ledge and rest my forehead on the cool glass.
I hear heavy footsteps coming up the stairs and I tense again. Already knowing who it is. “Riley. Are you okay?”
‘Yeah, I just nearly tripped coming up here so I’m just a bit startled.’ I lie.
Adonis’ dark eyebrows furrow as he reads the message. His lips open to say something but gets cut off. “Riley? What are you doing on here?”
I side-step Adonis and come face to face with Mr Collins. Shit. ‘I was showing Adonis around. His first lesson is with us.’
“Ahh okay, and here I thought you grew some balls and decided to skip my class.” He jokes and gives me a friendly nudge. I laugh lightly, the happy atmosphere coming back momentarily.
‘Hey, I have balls.’
“Uh-huh...” I roll my eyes and jump when Adonis clears his throat. “Oh! Sorry, I’m Mr Collins. A pleasure to be teaching you this year.”
Honestly. I thought he’d be pissed we’re late.
“I’m Adonis Black, nice to meet you. I think.” Adonis’ eyes give Mr Collins a once over and his reaction is priceless. His eyes go from his work shoes to his black slacks to his white shirt with small flamingoes dotted about on it in small amazement. I swallow the laugh that threatens to bubble up before I can make a scene.
“Sorry what was your name? I wasn’t listening.” Mr Collins says as he looks up from texting on his phone.
“Adonis Black.” Mr Collins hums in response while I look outside. Why.. the fuck. Did Adonis saying his full name sound so hot? Especially in that deep voice.
‘I thought you’d be pissed we’re late.’ I say. Voicing my thoughts from before, trying to get my mind off Adonis’ voice.
He waves me off, slightly moving up the stairs to his classroom. “Tell you the truth... I’ve just got in so I don’t mind.” He laughs it off and continues up the stairs.
He’s too much like a student. It’s weird but good.
Once we get into the classroom I slip into the back and set my bag down on the chair next to me. My jacket is the next thing to come off and I sling it on the back of my chair, careful not to make too much noise.
“Okay, guys sorry I’m a bit late first off, second of all, we have a new student. Can we have a drum roll please...” we all start banging our feet and slamming our hands down on the desks as Adonis strolls into the room.
I start laughing from the back as our eyes meet and he’s got a miserable look on his face. “Adonis Black!” Mr Collins says, dragging out the vowels like he’s announcing a fight.
The class erupts into cheers, Adonis looking back at them like he’s right at home whereas if I was in the position I’d be shitting myself.
“Right alright, alright, calm done you, idiots. Adonis, go sit next to Aurora while I set my computer up.”
“Yeah, come on babe!” Aurora purrs while her and Adonis make eye contact. I gag, but mid gag I start silently laughing as he gives her a dirty look.
“No.” He says and Mr Collins looks at him. “No?” He asks him.
“No.” He repeats, in a tone that leaves no room for argument as he still looks at Aurora. The class is silent as they watch this play out.
Once his eyes meet Mr Collins’ he simply states, “I’m not sitting next to a slag.” He shrugs and when I snort, him and a few people around me, turn their head back to look at me.
I look to the side and out the window, ignoring the dirty looks on their faces and I cross my arms to give myself comfort.
When I look up to Adonis, his eyes bore into mine as he smiles slightly. “Adonis... you can’t call Aurora that.” Mr Collins says.
“Well, I just did so tough tits I suppose.” He shrugs again and steps forward to walk to a seat.
“Considering it’s your first day I’ll let you off.” Mr Collins says. Adonis turns and starts to walk backwards, his shoes the only sound in the room. “Cheers sir. I think you’re my new favourite.” He says.
Everyone’s eyes follow his, hoping they choose to sit next to them but when he stops at my desk, he puts his hands in his jacket pockets and looks down at me.
I slowly move my head to look up at him silently. I raise an eyebrow as if to say, ‘what?’
“May I so graciously offer you the chance to sit next to an amazing human being?” I turn and look behind me on purpose, mainly because no one is behind me, when I turn back I point at myself and raise an eyebrow again as if to say, ‘Me?’
“Yes, you.” He chuckles. I get a bit of paper out and look behind him. I see everyone staring at us but I continue to move my head left and right to try and see around him. ‘But I don’t see Sylvester Stallone anywhere.’
“I meant me, you dickhead.” He gives me a deadpan look. ‘Oh... fine, yeah you can sit next to me.’ I move my bag while I silently laugh so he can sit down.
“Right, so enough of this chitchat crap. Let’s get down to business. I was gonna do some poems but I thought: ‘Nah they hate it. I’ll come up with some other stuff.’ Sooo, I came up with a plan.” Mr Collins says loudly, capturing everyone’s attention.
“So, the person you’re sitting next to is going to be your partner from here on out for the entire year. You’re going to have to create a story about each other, whether it be fact or fiction and we, as a class have to work out which it is.” He finishes.
The nerd of the class puts their hand up. “Yes, Charlotte.”
“Well, how is this helping us for our exams?”
“Charlotte. You have two other English teachers that teach you all that crap. I’m the extra teacher that keeps you up to date.” His voice turns from happy to monotone when he speaks to Charlotte, his whole expression dropping. He hates Charlotte.
After a little bit, Mr Collins lets us get to work, even though Adonis and I have just been talking.
‘Oh yeah, why didn’t you sit next to the lads or the lasses?’
“Riley, they all seem like dicks. Apart from that Eli kid and his mate Tom.” I nod my head and pretend like I know who the fuck he’s on about.
‘How do you know them though, ’cause you’re new.’
“Long story. Don’t ask.” He says emotionlessly.
The lad that’s passing out paper places some on our table and both of us reach for the paper, he got there first so my hand touches the top of his tan one. I retract my hand quickly when he gets goosebumps.
Why did I give his goosebumps?
‘Cause you’re a freak! How do you not get that?
I look out the window subconsciously when I hear her voice again, instantly putting me in a bad mood.
“Hey, you good?”
‘Yeah, I’m fine. There was just a bird is all.’ I shrug it off and grab a piece of paper.
There’s a couple beats of silence before we start talking again but this time it’s about the project. My mind instantly starts working on the project, writing and writing. Not stopping until I hear the bell. I put my pen in my pocket and look at Adonis, he’s paper is empty and he’s on his phone playing a game.
Are you fucking serious? I just did most of the work. Fuck sake.
Before he could look up I walk away with all my stuff, dodging people and the tables. Making sure I’m out of the classroom without Adonis.
A wave of anger reaches me when I see Aurora walking towards me. I’m so not in the mood for this. I take a deep breath and shrug on my jacket and bag before slowly walking toward her.
Her expression turns from venomous to shocked when she realises I’m walking to her, once we’re close, I side-step her and walk the rest of the way to second period.
On the way there, I slowly stop and think about what my life would be like if my mam was still here, would my dad still beat me? Would I still get bullied?
All I want is to spend one last day with my mam. If I could give my life to make her come back I would. In a heartbeat.
Then do it. End it. I dare you.
I stop in the hallway. Hearing her start to taunt me again. Her voice echoing down my ears and back like she’s talking down a tunnel.
I feel like I’m trapped in my body and she is just telling me what to do. Whether I listen to her or not chooses my fate.
My bag hits a wall and then I slide down it, letting her speak over the students talking. Letting them fade into background noise. Oh, how I wish I could do that.
You know you can. Just go home tonight and end it.
I ball my fists and shake my head. But what about dad, he’d miss me.
She scoffs. Yeah right. No one loves you, no one would miss you. Just end it.
My eyes fill up with tears, my mind fills up with possibilities. Should I do it tonight?
I shake my head. My fingernails finding their way up to my mouth as my teeth bite down on them and pull.
When my teeth pull too hard and slip off my nail, my vision becomes blurry and my tongue tastes blood. I draw my finger away and I swear. Shit.
There’s no blood on my finger but I’m pretty sure I’ve bitten my tongue. I wipe my finger on my school pants, the saliva from my mouth drying instantly on my pants.
My eyes slowly become clear in time to see some school shoes in front of me, the light shines off the leather and his trousers are just at the ankles, making his white socks and laces visible, making it easy to see they’re are tucked into the side of his shoes.
My eyes stayed glued to the floor. Wow. You’re that pathetic you can’t even look at him. She taunts.
Shut the fuck up! Honestly! I bring my knees up and wrap my arms around them, hugging them tighter to me.
As he crouches down, the crowd thins. The people getting to lessons late, they take their time as they walk by, trying to see what’s going on.
When he crouches, he doesn’t stay in front of me, he slides his bag off and places it next to him, one of the straps lightly touching me.
My head moves up slightly as the tears that have caught the corners of my eyes begin to fall slightly because of the movement. Once I look at him I see that he’s straightened his legs out and crossed them at the ankles, his fingers are linked together, sitting on his stomach and when my eyes trail up his figure I see that his eyes are closed.
When he sighs and moves slightly to get comfy, my eyebrows furrow. What’s he doing?
He’s waiting for you to breakdown cause you’re an emotional freak. She says.
I ignore her and move my head back down and sniffle, my hand moving up to wipe away a tear. I hear the arms of his coat brush against the body of the coat and I move my head up to look at him. “Are you crying?”
I shake my head as more tears fall, my hands covering my face.
No. I’m not doing this right now.
He chuckles. “Yeah, and I’m a monkey's uncle.” He says back, making my body tense.
My hand shoots out of the cupboard quickly as I hear my mams footsteps come down the stairs. Crap! I think to myself as I stare at the sweets that are in my hand.
I quickly stuff them in my jumper pockets and jump down, off the chair I was temporarily using as a ladder. I quickly sit in the chair when she walks in, looking behind me. “Lee.. what have I told you?”
I fake a confused look. “Huh? What are you on about?” I lean back on the chair and kick my legs back and forth.
“Riley. I wasn’t born yesterday. Give me the sweets. Your tea’s gonna be ready in soon.” She scolds.
“But I don’t have any sweets mam!” I say astonished. How did she know? My head whips around the kitchen, looking for cameras.
“Riley, if you didn’t steal those sweets that are currently falling out of your hoody then I’m a monkey’s uncle.” She says lightheartedly, but at the same time sternly. I sigh and hand her back the sweets.
I sniffle when the memory resurfaces. I pull my jacket sleeves up to cover my hands and wipe the tears that are streaming down my face at a quick rate.
My body jumps slightly when big, strong arms wrap around my back, pulling me to their chest. “Look, I don’t know why you’re crying but uh... I’m here for you... I think. Is that what you're supposed to say to crying girls?”
A laugh bubbles up and out of my mouth, making him laugh too. “It’s my first time okay?” He says lightheartedly. “Don’t judge me.” He jokes.
My mam would like him...
After a while of us just sitting in the corridor, hugging. he lets me free, still holding my shoulders, keeping me close in case I break down again. “You good to go to second period?” He asks softly.
I nod my head weakly, wiping my face again. ‘Sorry about that by the way.’ I write down.
“It’s all good. If this is what I have to do for you to be my mate, then I’ll do it.” He says seriously. My eyes meet his as I get a suspicious vibe from him but when he gives me a big boyish grin all those thoughts go flying out the window when I roll my eyes.