1. a customary or regular course of procedure.
2. commonplace tasks, chores, or duties as must be done regularly or at specified intervals; typical or everyday activity:the routine of an office.
That's what routine is. And Theo has never know any other way to live.
Waking up brushing his teeth going downstairs and fighting with his sister about what to watch on TV and then eat some cereal while talking with his parents about how he thinks the day will go. He goes back to his bedroom and dresses himself, his jean jacket being the last thing he dresses.
He has the privilege to have his dad drive him and his sister to their own schools, he know that. He knows that people like Kristen that have to go through the hell that is the school bus(thought she says she likes it, probably because she gets more time to hangout with her current crush). Or like Elliott that has to go by foot to school which takes him about one hour and half.
When Theo got to school his eyes saw the same as always. People walking and gathering around the main door, and people walking on the hallways, some running to their lockers to get something during the last minute. And there on the ending of the first floor the blue locker number 62 with Hayden leaning to it talking with his sister Sophie.
Theo remembered when Hayden had used to be all dresses and braided hair because that's what everyone said he had to be. And Sophie, Sophie had always been Sophie, living a simple lifestyle by kissing girls at parties and flirting with boys to see if she could get stuff.
"Hey" they both greeted.
"Hi" mumbled Theo while opening his locker and searching between the crumpled papers for his notebook. "Where are the others?"
"Why is it that every Friday you always ask that? Don't you ever remember it?" Asked Hayden with a laugh. "Kristen has Chemistry and Elliott had P. E. so like," he gestured to the other side of the building. "They are far away."
"So you don't know where they have classes exactly too." Theo arched one of his eyebrows.
"Oh God. Please guys just hurry the hell up and let's get to class. We're getting late."
"You guys already are!" Spoke Elliot as he walked hurriedly by the hallway. Hi hair freshly cutted since yesterday.
"You too dude"
"Look who's talking."
"Don't walk to fast you might get hurt!" Said Hayden, Theo and Sophie all at the same time.
Elliott only had time to give a little laugh and then his friends were already entering their classroom.
English class was the one everyone complainef about. But for Thei it was nice, it was the class were he could pretend he was paying attention and sleep with his eyes open and during the tests he always did everything right less the grammar that was usually left in white.
Soon it was lunch time. All of his friends hunching over each other sitting on the table whispering gossip. Elliott was always between the ones that were gossiping and the ones that were just talking about shows, songs and all in between, saying things here and there.
There was going to be a party later that day. The usual Friday routine as everyone said. The unusual and worst of all was that Theo was going to sleep in one of his friends house, with all of his friends, together for more than the usual 8 hours of the school schedule. Truly there was only a little time he could handle with his friends. Or at least only a little bit of time where he felt like they actually tried to care about him. He knew that later it would be exactly like this. All of them talking and him listening or at least pretending. After a while of listening to things that will never be helpful to his life his ears just kinda of shut down.
Theo's next and last class was P.E. Kristen would be with him. He liked her, she was his favorite and he wasn't afraid to say it. Most people say they love their friends equally but for Theo he always needs to have one that stands at the top.
Their teacher is late and all of the class is waiting outside most of their hairs being blown out by the cold wind. All a mix of brows and blondes with curls and straight strings.
"Yeah." This is how all of their conversations starte. For a while Theo thought that it was because they were both awkward but he had found out that it was because she was chill like his classmates said. And she truly was. She didn't care about what other people thought of her and she always tried to solve problems in the most pacific way.
"On the bus," she bit one of her nails "you know Elaine. She was like turning around and looking at me all the time. I'm going to talk to her at tonight's party."
"Is she even going?" Asked Theo. Elaine seemed like a too calm and nice girl to ever go to a party, but again Theo was going too.
"Probably. I think her friends are. So she is probably going too."
"And what's your-" And then the teacher arrived but they kept chatting during the exercises until they were separated into different teams.
Soon after he was back in the lockers room changing clothes and putting deodorant. And leaving for the parking lot.
There all of his friends were waiting. Sophie with Elliott in their car listening to loud metal songs and Kristen already in the back. Most of the park was empty, people like rats run away from the sinking boat that was their school life.
"Hi." Shouted Theo between the loud music while opening the back door and sitting in the middle of the car. He then proceeded to shuffle in his backpack for his current read. Unfortunately it lay forgotten in his locker. Theo groaned to himself and wished he had remembered to charge his cellphone or at least bring the charger. He started taping his foot against the car carpet. To ignore his anxiety he tried to look for something else that would hold his attention but sometimes anxiety is so bad nothing can stop it, not even the evidence of everything going well.
That's when he stared through the window and saw Elliot coming for them. It took Theo some time to recognize him because of the new haircut.
As they drove the sky got darker and slowly the street lamps grew brighter. The birds were flying to the trees and cuddling with each other between the dark green November leafs. Everything felt like it was in slow motion but that was, perhaps, because they were driving rather slowly. The streets were quiet at that time like usual and they didn't have any hurry to arrive to the party since it was still early.
It took them some minutes to find a place to park the car because the entire street was parked. The house party was glowing with all the light coming out from the windows and the door. Some people were chatting outside with cups filled with alcohol and cellphones in their hands, some were waiting for their friends and others were just freshing up before going to the jam-packed building with little air circulating in there. Maybe it wasn't that early after all. In their suburbs most people just feel the need to find something to kill time.
First they went to the kitchen to get some drinks. Theo got some tap water that he will probably not even touch, Sophie smiled at that as if it was the first time he was doing it.
As the time passed more people entered and louder the music got. They were all sitting in a orange couch by the sound collums. When they laughed Theo tried to laugh too even if he couldn't listen to what they were saying. Elliott smiled at him, because that's how he was. He always knew what was going on, even if no one else knew, sometimes it was as if he had all the answers to the rain, the stars and all in between.
One hour in there and they were "all" having fun.
Ten minutes after and Hayden was already on the yard playing beer pong with nobodies.
Twenty minutes after and Elaine was walking through the front door and sitting on the couch with Sophie, Elliott and Theo between her and Kristen.
Twenty five minutes after and Sophie left to meet someone. And Elliot went to the upstairs floor to see how crazy things were already.
One minute after and Theo was leaving the couch unsure. He was leaving because he thought it was the best, not because someone had told him to do so. And usually his instincts weren't right.
He walked to the backyard trying to get some air with the cup still full in his hand. If this was a movie there would probably be some fairy lights hanging in the trees and a pool with people chilling in there. But this wasn't a movie and there was a group of people throwing toilet paper at a tree like it was Halloween. And instead of the pool there were some people smoking and chatting and dancing.
The bad thing about parties is that you can never trust a bed, if you find an available bed at all. So maybe Thei shouldn't be heading upstairs and he definitely shouldn't be thinking about taking a nap in a bed. But sleeping where anyone can find him is not a good idea so locking himself in a bedroom is probably the best.
There are only three room. The second one is empty but the sheets look messy. So Theo drags the bed to the door making it impossible for anyone else to go in there. Then he takes all the sheets to the other end of the room and lies on the bare matress.
"Theo?!" Shouts someone from the other end of the door. "Are you here?"
"Making out with someone?" Shouts Hayden after Kristen.
Theo feels a small headache and only after one minute he remembers everything. The boring party, the boring people with all their basic lifes. He mumbles a I'mhere and drags the bed away finally being able to open the door.
Kristen looks like the only sober one, after all she is going to be driving. Hayden is leaning on her and Sophie has all of her makeup messed up.
"Hurry up! We still have to find Elliott."
"He was downstairs on the bushes" says Hayden touching his eyes and then looking at his finger like it was on fire.
And he was indeed. With a beer in his hand and a copy of the illiad on the other. He was pretty energetic like always, even if he had barely touched any drinks.
Most of the gang was asleep during the ride to Kristen's house.
But when they passed the front door they were all awake and she had had to shush them several times. Her parents knew she was bringing her friends to a sleepover but they weren't supposed to wake up her sister.
Her parents were on the living room, her father already asleep and her mother was watching a show about doctors. She had greeted them and they had followed their friend to her bedroom.
They had all slept almost on top of each other but everyone seemed to have enjoyed it. While Theo never even got to sleep. He had heard it all. His friends going to the bathroom several times during the night, Kristen's parents going to sleep and Elliot going to God knows where for at least one hour during the quiet of the night.