Thursday 26 August 2010

The Bunny Boiler - Chapter 5

April is now officially closing its curtains and thankfully for me Kate has not reared her ugly head for a while. Don't get me wrong, she's still not subtle about how she feel about me and on occasions I would find myself cornered by her, or she would stare at me from across the cafeteria of the college with a look that says 'You better not turn your back.' But, no major scenarios had yet arisen and I was fully under the impression that she had well and truly let things go (well, as much as an insane person can let things go).

    "I'll pick you up at about half twelve and then we'll drive round to Becca's, OK?" Tia states as she starts to leave for her class.
    "Yeah, sure," I wave dismissively towards her, "That's fine," and make my way to English.
    Today is my friend Becca's birthday and since her parents have left the house in her ever so capable hands, she is hosting an all day BBQ. However, I have classes pretty much all day so the plan is to drop off the presents at lunchtime and then join the party properly at the end of the day.

    I'm late for English and stumble into the classroom knocking into everyone’s seats.
    "Sit down, please," comes the impatient voice of the teacher, and I do as I'm told. I struggle with the present, unsure as where I should leave it, so it just remains on my table, the purple bow occasionally blocking the board.
I look around the classroom to see that no one is paying any attention whatsoever to the teacher. Instead they're all looking at me - well, at the present actually. I move the colourful box around the table to see if their eyes will follow its trace - and they do.
    "Is it your birthday?" a whisper floats towards me from the row behind me.
    I turn to see Danielle (of Chapter 3 fame) smiling at me, motioning towards the present.
    "Umm, no," I reply, a little worried as to whether she has a motive or not. Afterall, her and Kate are quite good friends.
    "Oh," she says and attempts another smile. After a long pause, she whispers again, "What is it?"
    "A present," I say, a little impatiently, annoyed that I have to keep twisting my neck just to talk to her.
    I hear an "Oh," and then silence. I make a few more notes about the current book we're reading (Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf, if you were interested) and listen to the teacher once more, but my concentration is broken yet again by Danielle.
    "You're going to Becca's, aren't you?" she asks with a loud whisper, which once again makes everyone turn around and look at me.
    I nod quickly and turn back around mouthing 'sorry' to the teacher.
    How did she know that?
    "I might be going too," she states. I don't even bother to turn around. "So might Kate,"
    This time I do reply and spin myself so fast around the chair that I get dizzy. "WHAT?" I pretty much yell.
    "EXCUSE ME!" the teacher shouts. "Either be quiet, or leave," he bellows.
    I remain quiet. Although my thoughts are anything but.

    Tia is waiting by her car with Mikey when I finally make my way there and without a pause we make our way to Becca's house. We're only at the bottom of her road and already we can see just how busy her house is going to be. Her entire street is filled with parked cars (abandoned, badly parked cars).
    She opens the door without us knocking and shouts out our names in elation. Clearly she's had too much to drink.
    "Happy Birthday," we chorus when we see her, and throw the presents her way. She looks genuinely excited when she sees them but after two seconds of Oooing and Aaaing, they are thrown in a pile with the others, and most likely forgotten.
    "Everyone's in the back garden," she points towards the back of the house, "And some have decided to take the party to the roof," her perfectly manicured hand now points to the ceiling and she rolls her eyes. "My mum's going to kill them if they mess up the flower pots up there,"
    We chat in the kitchen with her for a while as she makes us drinks.
    "We can only stay for another forty-five minutes, then it's back to college, I'm afraid," Mikey states, but Becca just tutts.
    "Oh, please," she begins and hands me my drink. "Everyone's been saying the same thing but as of yet no one's left,"
    "And is Jamie coming?" she turns towards me.
    "He might tonight. He has an exam on Monday and he's getting a little worked up over it," I reply.
    Becca doesn't seem phased by it. She left school at 16 and has yet not looked back. And why should she? She’s already been on a gap year around East Asia, managed to get an internship with a finance company and is now enjoying being young.
    In a way, I envy her. It would be nice not to slave over studying and exams.
    It would be splendid in fact.
    "I don't miss all that," she says, pulling a rather dissatisfied face as she takes a gulp of her drink. "More vodka, methinks," and pours half a bottle into her plastic cup.

    We head out to the back garden which is filled with people chatting, drinking and fooling around. This is nothing but a teenage bash, not some classy cocktail party, and I don't think any of us would have it any other way.
    "I'm going to the roof," I announce. I look up at the cascade of people standing over the wall of it, armed with water balloons. "I'd rather be on their side," and run to the stairs.
    "Oh dear," Tia and Mikey say in unison and both of them are now behind me, following me to the roof. The garden lot are clearly oblivious to what's about to happen. Happily, they're drinking and laughing.
    And then war breaks out.
   The three of us sit down on the patio chairs scattered around on the roof, looking at the mass of people bombarding the garden lot.
    "This is nice," I say and laugh at the excited screams that are heard from below.
    "Are you going to help out?" one of the balloon throwers asks.
    "I think you've got this covered," I say. "We need to go soon anyway,"
    He just laughs and takes two more water balloons from the pile.
    And then a blood curdling scream is heard.
    The water balloon war abruptly comes to a close and everyone is staring down at the garden. We make our way to the edge of the wall as well to witness what's happened. But we fail to see anything immediately. A few seconds later, Kate emerges in view, soaked in water, holding her left hand to her face. She screams in anger again and then looks up.
    I should have probably ducked. But I didn't. Instead, I remained transfixed on the spot looking down at her and trying my hardest not to laugh.
    "You bitch!!!" she screams when she notices me. "I'm bleeding!"
    "It wasn't me," I yell back but Kate fails to listen. She's now marching up the outside stairs coming up to the roof.
    The crowd of people part like the Red Sea when they see her coming.
    "You threw that on purpose. Look at me. I'm bleeding," she says as she takes her hand on her face.
    She's not actually bleeding - just very red where the balloon hit her.
    "Kate! I haven't thrown a single balloon!" I stand my ground but there's no point to it. Even if she believes me she still likes to blame me, so she carries on.
    "I've been nothing but nice to you considering what you did," she spits.
    "Nice? You think you've been nice?" but she doesn't listen to me. She carries on ranting.
    "I'm telling Jamie about this," she screams.
    "Tell him. He wouldn't care," I shout back.
    "He'd care if you hit me,"
    "I didn't hit you. It was a water balloon which I didn't even throw,"
    "He's believe me," she says in all seriousness.
    "And there are about 100 witnesses that would say otherwise," I wave my hand towards the crowd who are now silent, apart from the occasional whisper. "I didn't throw it at you, so please stop wasting my time," I turn to go towards Mikey and Tia. But Kate is marching towards me. It suddenly dawns on me that I'm on a roof and I honestly wouldn't put it past her to throw me over. So I move away from the edge (better to be safe that sorry).
    "I really hate you," she screams like a little girl.
    "Yes. I've gathered," I turn my back and shake my head when I see Tia and Mikey.
    And she punches me on the back of my arm.
    So I kick her on the shin.
    After she's recovered from the pain she charges towards me and within seconds a proper catfight breaks out. I've got to give it to her - at least she's determined. She tries to throw a few more punches but the boys that are now restraining her don't allow it. We finally part, and while I just catch my breath, Kate is still screaming.
    "You're insane," I tell her. "Just look at how you react to things,"
    But she doesn't listen.
    "Just leave," Becca tells Kate as she comes by my side. "Stop turning up when you're not invited,"
    "I'm always invited," she bellows like a spoilt child as she rubs her leg. I smile when I see she's quite clearly in pain (childish, I know).
    But just when we think she's about to leave, my lunges herself at the bucket of water balloons are starts throwing them towards me, one by one. Most landing on either Becca or Mikey.
    Once she's truly vented her anger, she leaves trying her best to looks composed as she holds her forehead.
    Meanwhile, the three of us are left looking like drowned rats.

    Jamie's already in Biology class on his own when I finally arrive. He's sitting down on his usual desk reading a textbook, but his eyes shift up when he sees me. He smiles momentarily but it soon fades when he sees I'm absolutely soaked. It's then replaced by a laugh.
    "What happened?" he asks shutting his book.
    I say nothing. Just give him a stern look that says 'Do you really need to ask?'
    "You've got to stay out of her way," he says sympathetically.
    I want to yell at him. I want to scream and shout with anger because this time I truly did nothing. I didn't antagonise her - I tried my best to stay out of her way, but she chose to come and blame me anyway.
    "I did nothing," I say through gritted teeth.
    I like to think he believes me, but he doesn't say anything. Sometimes I wish he would get her tantrums the same way I do. Then he would really understand just how insane she is.
    "You should have changed your clothes," he tells me as he sees water beads dropping to the carpet.
    "Becca already gave me a jumper. I'm too skinny for the rest of her clothes," I sit down and wince at the squelching sound. I can feel that Jamie wants to laugh, but he holds it. Instead, he stands up and comes over to me, stroking my wet hair away from my face and swirling it behind my ear.
    "She's crazy!" I tell him. But he just nods and edges closer, a wicked grin appearing on his face. He leans down and kisses me on the cheek, the warmth of it making me forget the annoyance of the day.
    "Promise me you'll definitely stay out of her way,"
    I want to say yes. I really do, but instead I just look at him, my head unable to nod in agreement.
    "Promise," he insists.
    "Fine," I lie.

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