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And be sure to keep on reading "Billy Chase"...
...It's the only way that you can win a chance to play 'seven minutes in heaven' in the closet with Joseph Gordon Levitt!!! (He's an AMAZING tongue kisser! Trust me on this! Don't miss out!)*
*(Previous Statement May Not Be True)
- Some AWESOME news to start this entry off with! Stevie's awake!
Brandon actually called my house before school this morning. I guess he's been checking up every morning to see what he could find out about his condition, and he said that Stevie's mom told him that Stevie came to some time late last night, and that he's doing fine, albeit a bit banged up from his fall.
I didn't realize how worried I really was about him until the good news lifted the weight off of my chest. I guess I just blocked it out for a while. Which is a good thing, because I don't know if I would have been able to go through a whole weekend feeling tense and messed up in the head.
Seeing Brandon's face in school today...it was like a light had been switched on behind those big, pretty, eyes of his. Long lashes and all. He's like, "Isn't it great? Are you SURE you don't want to come with me after school today? I'm sure he'd love to see you, Billy."
He was so excited. So happy. He really is connected to Stevie, isn't he? I mean, I remember what Stevie told me about Brandon's feelings for me and all...but at moments like this one, it was hard to really 'feel' it. Maybe I'm just being selfish, but I didn't want to go with Brandon to see Stevie. Not if I had to share him. I just felt weird about it. So I told him, "Maybe some other time. K?"
He's like, "You sure? I mean, I don't want to push or anything."
I said, "No. I'll go...eventually. I've just got a lot on my mind these days, that's all."
Brandon took that a lot easier than I thought he would. Then again, why wouldn't he? He's all infatuated and screwy again. He's like, "I just can't wait to talk to him again. I'm just glad he's ok."
I'm like, "Yeah. Me too."
I don't know why I'm even thinking about this. I already agreed that being involved with Brandon in an emotional way was a bad thing. I'm going in circles again. Let it go, Billy, and be done with it already.
Anyway, I got to skip my third period class today. We had a major assembly in the auditorium this morning. All classes were cancelled and attendance was mandatory. I thought it was going to be one of those corny 'stay in school', 'say no to drugs', and 'never ever have sex', propaganda lectures. You know the ones...with a bunch of 30 year old guys in kiddie clothes, jumping around and faking this super hyped up enthusiasm while pretending to be on our level. Ugh! It's insulting to teenagers everywhere. Honestly.
But it wasn't like that at all...
Our principal came out on stage and walked to the microphone. Normally it takes a few moments for everybody to calm down...but the look on his face. The look on his face made the room fall silent within a matter of seconds.
He cleared his throat, and he said, "I've called this assembly together today....to address a very serious issue. One that has no place, whatsoever, within the walls of this school....or anywhere else." Needless to say, that statement got our attention. He continued with, "Last week...one of our students, Steven Mitchell...was attacked here on school grounds. This act of violence was perpetrated by some of you very own classmates, and they will be dealt with accordingly. But it is not the inflicted punishment that is going to bring me any peace today. It is going to be the knowledge that I stood up here, and I let each and every single person in this room know that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated. Not now. Not ever." There was a calmness in his voice, but something about it held more of a sense of authority than it would have if he had come out all emotional and angry. Just knowing that he got the whole school together because of what happened to Stevie...I don't know....I thought it was kinda cool. He also said, "Let me make something clear....if any of you are facing any kind of bullying in this school, whether it be for your size, or your looks, your sexuality, or your financial situation...or perhaps for no reason at all...I want you to come talk to me. There will be a sign in sheet in the main office, as well as the offices of your appointed guidance counselors. You let us know that you need help, and we WILL be there to help you. That is my promise to you, as your principal, and as a friend." Then he leaned forward, and his eyes narrowed slightly as he made one last statement. "For all of the students out there who think it's funny to pick on somebody else, who get a kick out of having people laugh at them, or...God forbid...get a thrill out of pushing them around and putting your hands on them in a violent or abusive way...I hope that you are paying special attention to this message. Because if I hear about it....the first time, you will get detention for a full week. The second time, three day suspension, no questions. And if it happens a third time, not only will you be brought up on criminal charges with the local police department, but there will be a hearing with both you and your parents to determine whether or not you should face expulsion. Hear my words, people....this is NOT a game. Steven Mitchell was hospitalized, and the boys who did may now have a permanent criminal record for it. If you're dealing with anything, if you SEE anything, please come to one of us in the office at once. This will not go on. Let me say that again....this will not go on."
And that was pretty much that. He didn't have, like, a Q&A session or anything like that. He just told us to remain in our seats and to basically treat the rest of the 3rd period like a study hall. He seemed to be dead serious about what he said. Who knows? Maybe when Stevie comes back, things will be a little bit better for him. Hell...maybe it'll be a little bit better for us all.
When the next bell rang, and everybody was filing out of the auditorium, I caught sight of Joanna and Jamie Cross, walking together. Jamie was kinda draped over her shoulders, kissing her cheek with a smile, and she looked like she was loving every minute of it. They looked so happy together, you know? Something about it put me in a somber mood. I thought about me and Brandon, and how we used to be. And how it all just vanished into thin air, never to return. Heh...there was a time when I couldn't keep my hands off of him. When he couldn't keep his hands off of me. And now...? We're basically strangers that bump into one another more often than we probably should. I mean, I saw Joanna kiss her boyfriend on the lips, right there, out in the open, and nobody said a word. It was just considered....'normal'.
I'll bet that if Jamie Cross kissed ME on the lips like that, it would have been a whole different story.
I don't know. Just...it got me to thinking about Brandon and Stevie, and Lee, and Randall, and just....something that AJ said to me in the mall on Friday about not having anybody to really stand beside me....it just got me feeling kinda down.
But, whatever. It's no big deal. Besides, it didn't last long, because as I was looking in that direction, I managed to catch sight of Trace leaving the auditorium with the rest of the students.
I hollered out to him, and he smiled, like, "Billy? Dude, what's up?" He came over to me, and he looked so...clean. Hehehe, not that Trace ever looked dirty or anything, but this was squeaky clean. And he had a big smile on his face. I can't remember the last time I had seen so much life behind those eyes.
I asked him, "So, how was it? Hopefully, my dad isn't being a total punk to you and Mikey right now." I winced a little as I said, but Trace acted like he couldn't have been happier.
He's like, "No! Dude, no way. Your dad is actually really cool."
I was like, "Oh.........really?"
Trace said, "Yeah. I mean, once we put Mikey to bed and everything, your dad and I just kinda stayed up all night talking. He really listens, you know? And he's no softie, either. He gives it to me straight when he thinks I need to hear it. I don't know, I just...I can really respect that." Then he's like, "You know what he did this morning?"
I'm like "What?"
Trace wrinkled up his forehead a bit while grinning, and he's like, "He made us breakfast."
Hehehe, I kind of expected there to be more, but Trace and I just giggled at one another for a minute. "That's it?"
He's like, "Hehehe, yeah. I mean...does he always do that?"
I told him, "Yeah. My dad has always been a big breakfast person. My mom was always a coffee and toast kind of lady but my dad made a believer out of her, I suppose."
Trace smiled from the memory. It was like he could still taste it. "Dude...it was like Heaven on Earth. I mean, your dad woke us up really early this morning. But once I got out of the shower, he had Mikey all dressed and ready for school. And then I smelled this delicious aroma coming out of the kitchen. It totally blew my mind! It was like, eggs and sausage and hash browns and....my God! I usually have to wait for Easter Sunday at grandma's house to get a breakfast that awesome. You should have seen Mikey! Hehehe! I've never seen him with so much energy on a Monday morning! He was really happy to have more than a Pop tart and a glass of milk for a change."
You know, it was the strangest feeling in the world...but you know how I felt about Brandon being all goofy over Stevie and stuff? I could have sworn that I felt a little bit of that over this sudden bonding between Trace and my dad. I mean, wasn't I supposed to be mad at him? Didn't he leave us? Wasn't Trace supposed to be a temporary charity case until I can find something better?
Wait...no. That's not fair. Trace and Mikey needed help, and my dad is there to help them. That should be enough. It is enough. I have some really disgusting ego moments, you know that?
Anyway, Trace was like, "Listen, I smoothed everything over with your friend, Simon. I know that I was a bit of a douche bag, copping on out him over the last week or two. But I really did appreciate his help. So I let him know. Your dad said he would help me with my homework. Believe it or not, I'm actually kinda looking forward to it." Then, with this slightly affectionate look in his eye, Trace said "Thanks again, Billy. For everything." I almost thought that he was gonna hug me or something. But that wouldn't have been like Trace to do that. Not in public like this, anyway.
I said, "Nah, it's nothing...."
But he's like, "No. I...I believed in you. And you really came through for me. Me and Mikey. So thank you." Then he said, "You know...I've been let down so many times in my life that...it's just a relief to actually give a good friend some praise and actually mean it. Thanks."
Not wanting to argue the point, I just smiled back and said, "You're welcome." Then I added, "So it should be easy to just come over and hang out, huh? Now that I know where to find you."
Trace said, "We'll make it a date. Seeya...." He gave me that amazing grin, and then backed up into the crowd while waving goodbye to me.
Maybe my dad can be a cool guy after all. I had almost forgotten how much I adored and admired him when he was still here. But I guess you take people for granted once you've loved them for long enough. You don't really understand how much...until they're gone for good.
I think I should go over more often. Maybe spend some time with him. With Trace there, it's not like I don't have an excuse, right? I just....I miss him. I didn't want to, but I do. Trace isn't used to having a cool father...but I was.
Anyway, I'm going to bed. I was thinking about it, and maybe I'll go see Stevie some time in the next few days. Just to say hi. It's not like I have to stay or anything. We're not THAT close.
Gotta go. Seeya soon.