I watch as the yellow and golden sun rays bleed through the curtains of my beige and white bedroom. It was a normal room, way to clean to be for a teen boys room. I couldn’t make it look like a normal teen boys room because mother's words always haunted me to this day. “God is always watching, everything we do is under the eyes of the lord.” The word everything made me scared that if I left anything on the floors or did bad things in my room, that it was accounted as a sin.
My slacks and dress shoes hung by my dresser as I inspected my chest and stomach. I was extremely healthy but couldn’t seem to get any pecks or abs that many boys in my school had. I just had a flat, smooth, untouched looking stomach that was dotted with freckles. My belly button just above my pants line. My mom begged me to go to a christian school so that I didn’t feel physically inactive or unhealthy, I didn’t, the fact that I didn’t have as much of a muscular body just made me want one more. I quickly rebutton up my shirt when I hear a knock on my door.
“Open up Pinhead, it's breakfast time!” Hannah's voice rang into my room.
“I’m coming, I’m coming! Give me a sec.” I muttered curse words under my breath but quickly stopped myself, remembering mother's words once again.
My real name was Pinny but many people pronounced it Penny. It was really Piney, like a pine tree but the unusual name of course came for some nicknames that I personally didn’t like. Some like Pinetree, Penny, Pinhead, Pint, and so many more. I eventually stopped minding the nicknames, knowing that they wouldn’t stop at all.
I fixed the buttons on my shirt, having buttoned them wrong due to the fact that I was in a hurry. As I put on my slacks, socks, and shoes, I scanned the room for my book bag that had all of my “Lucky Go Church” charms hanging from every which way. Not to mention the many signatures from my friends, even some from people I hardly knew. But, I didn’t mind. It made me look like I had a life outside of school. Which was hardly true. Yes, I did have friends come over from time to time but other than that, no one really payed any attention to me.
I walk down the pearl white stairs. The smell of bacon and eggs filling my nose and causing my hunger to spike. I nearly ran down the stairs to find my sister, Hannah, my mom and my dad in the kitchen talking about god knows what. Right when Hannah saw me, she put on the most shiz-eating grin on her face and plopped down on the chair next to me.
“I saw Pinny looking at himself in the mirror earlier.” She said bluntly, like it was absolutely nothing but made me whip my head around, drop my book bag, and began my protest.
“I was not! Hannah I was getting ready for school!” I yelled, looking at my sister, silently begging her to stop.
My sister smiled once again looking at a very confused mom and dad with the breakfast at hand and obviously not knowing what was going on.
“Ya you were. You were looking at your stomach and poking it. Quite honestly I don't see why you hate your belly so much, its so cute and small. There's nothing wrong with it.”
She sounded like mom. A lot like mom. It made me sick. Very, very sick. Mom automatically understood and gave me a sympathetic look, that made me sick. She placed my plate of breakfast lovingly and rubbed my head and neck, that made me sick.
“It’s alright sweetheart.” She said, looking at me with a look that I couldn’t read which made my stomach do lurches. Very, very sick.
I was known for puking when under pressure or under a lot of stress. I just had a light stomach. Mom took me to the doctor multiple times but they just said that the stress nerves in my brain had been extremely sensitive. It didn't bother me during tests or anything, just was really annoying when I had to speak in front of people.
“I-I…” I can't talk so I just trail off. Leaving everyone in my small family to themselves as we eat our breakfast.
It didn't take long for me to finish breakfast, do to the fact that I wanted to hurry out of the door before making it even more awkward around the kitchen table.
After cleaning and washing our bowls. We grab our jackets, gave our hugs, and scurried out the door.
The chilly fall air bites at my nose as soon as I walk out the door, causing a shiver to go down my spine. The yellow and brown leaves making the outside look like a beautiful wonderland, the sun shining on every leaf that was falling from the beautiful orange and yellow lighting shining on the sidewalk. The moment was ruined when my sister grabs my arm, dragging me to the bus stop, and soon I see the school bus driving up to it and I run next to her.
“Race ya!” I yell, jogging ahead of her and leaving her behind just to here her yell at me to slow down. But I can’t. Runner’s high is a real thing, and right now it’s pushing through my veins. I hear the leaves crunching under my feet as the air tickles and bites at my face, leaving it a very cherry red color. I finally slow down and eventually come to a halt when I see the red STOP sign in front of me. I smile and look as my sister who was running up to me, yelling random mumbles, obviously mad. The running finally get’s to me and a sharp pain tugs at my side, causing me to clutch down. Grunting in pain.
“Ha Ha!” Hannah laughs, “That, right there, is karma biting you in the butt!” She says breathing deeply, trying to regain normal breathing. Just then, the big, yellow school bus drives up and stops by us. My sister runs up the stairs before me, trying to gather her pride once again. I laugh and run up behind her, wincing slightly at all the loud noises booming right next to my ear. It’s a big bus, holding at least 20 to 25 students, and it showed.
The seats were run down, picking up a slightly gray-brown color aside from the regular, deep, wood brown color it had in the beginning of the year. The kids, some louder than others, held many conversations. Some about school, the upcoming History Test, and some about the middle school dance coming up next week. I wasn’t going to it, but I was staying home and watching Netflix, pretending like I had something to do that night.
Due to the fact that none of my friends rode my bus, only my sister but she had her life, I always ended up sitting next to someone I don’t know. I would normally just leave them alone and wait the 20 minutes till we got to school, without talking. So, I went to sit next to another boy without thinking about it, only to find that the seat next to him was blocked by a big, black bag.
“Umm… hello?” I said, trying to make my voice stand out beyond the talking crowd.
He turned towards me, him having the most smuggest look on his face that made my anger only heighten, but I internally awed at his eyes. They were red, blood red. They were amazing.
“Oh, wanna sit here? Sorry church boy, I don’t. SO you can leave now.” He said winking my way and turning back towards the window. My face flushed red with both embarrassment and anger. HOW DARE HE?!?! I took his bag, threw it on his lap, and sat, replacing the bag. He turned to me, looking at me with wide eyes and a surprised face. Holding the bag absently in his hands. I look at him with stern eyes, hating how much I liked those ruby irises.
“For one, don’t ever call me church boy. Second, this seat is not just yours, its the schools, and third, my name is Pinny or Pin for short.” I took a breath. Having said a lot in that small period of time.
He just stared, grunted, and turned back to the window, ignoring me. Which I was perfectly fine with. I got a good look at his features. He had dark brown, messy hair that stopped near the tips of his ears. His nose and jaw coming to a point. He was wearing a black and blue hoodie, black, ripped skinny jeans, and blue converse. But one thing itched in the back on my mind. Red eyes?
“Hey… why do you have red eyes?” I ask hesitantly. He turned towards me, rolled said eyes, and said,
“Do I need to explain how babies are made? Seriously? I thought even church boys knew that.” He scoffed. But softened his face soon after I began to give him a questioning look.
“I got them from dad. He left when I was 3. Mom never talks about him but I’m pretty sure I’m a lot like him.” He slightly smiles for a second then turns it into a frown.
“Why? You stalker or something?” He says, squinting his eyes, hiding the ruby color.
I shake my head furiously,
“Wh-What No! Absolutely Not! I just wanted to know whether they were contacts or not, they look so fake. No offence. I’m just saying they look to cool and pretty to look real.”
I hadn’t noticed what I said until after his eyes widen and a pink tint covers his cheeks.
“P-Pretty?” He said, trying to hide his shaking vocals. But failing miserably. I found a new confidence and began a conversation without blushing at what I had said.
“Ya. Their like a ruby color, right?” I leaned forward, trying to find any other colors but ended up with nothing. They were all red. I move closer, and closer. Until I could feel his hot breath on my cheek.
“Open your eyes, I need to find out whether or not their all red.” I whine, realizing how close we were but not caring and continue asking questions.
“F-fine but move back a b-bit.” He answered, not opening his eyes.
“No, this is the best view and the closest look up. So open your eye’s, this will only take a second.” I said, the desperation clearly in my voice.
“Fine. But then you need to scoot back.” He said, opening them for me. I stare into them, letting my own baby blue eyes focus on them. There was sight black but other than the red, there was no other color. I grunt and move back, seeing that he let out a loud sigh. The blush on his cheeks very subtle but still there.
“Why are you blushing? I know I got close but not too close, right?” Faking innocence. My mind chanted. I know exactly what I was doing. He swallowed, obviously trying not to say something he was going to regret.
“You were too close is all.” He said, his face returning to normal color.
“You do in fact have very pretty eyes.” I said plainly, turning towards him, pieces of blonde hair falling into my face briefly. I fixed it and continued.
“You’re like a vampire. That's really cool. With your black hair and ripped skinny jeans, I might have mistaken you for one. A vampire I mean.” I stated. He looked at me with another look that day I couldn’t quite read, yet, I didn’t get sick. I didn’t feel like my stomach did lurches. Instead, a light, brush of butterflies foreshadowed the pang in my heart. Signified that everything would get, much, much worse.
Liam. His name was Liam. I continued replaying our morning encounter in my head. But, what left me in a haze, was when we agreed that we’d never speak again. Never. Ever. It didn’t feel right not talking to him and for some reason I kept bumping into him during school. I realized that I had 3 classes with him and that he sat in the back with all of those classes. I didn’t understand why but let it slip because, who cares? I’m not going to be able to talk to him anymore. As we agreed. Well, more like I tried making conversation and he just pretended I wasn’t there until he got fed up. Turned around and told me we couldn't and shouldn’t talk anymore or ever again. I just nodded my head all because of the fact that the red eyes shushed my words completely. Which I was mad at myself about afterwards.
It was a conscious decision but I automatically sat with my sister when I saw that the only seat that was open was next to Liam. She looked at me with a puzzled look.
“Hey!?! Why are you sitting here? Go sit somewhere next to someone else. NOW.” She said, looking at me with a heavily angry look.
“I’m sorry. I just can’t sit by that kid back there because he hates me.” I lied. I do that a lot. I mentally noted.
“I. Don’t. Care. Elizabeth is supposed to si- Ezzi!”
I turned to find out that so called ‘Ezzi’ was sitting with Liam. They were talking and he didn’t seem to mind. It looked he was enjoying it actually. This sparked something. Something I pushed aside. Something I shouldn’t think about until in the sanctuary of my bedroom. But right now, I looked forwards, trying to not cower at my sister discouraging words.
When she finally was quiet, we were at the bus stop. I got up quickly, missing Hannah’s pushing hand. I stepped off the bus, not before sneaking a peak at Liam. Who was looking at the window with his eyebrows furrowed and face distressed. He was in deep thought. Really deep thought. I got off the bus and started walking back home with my homework filled backpack tugging on my back. I was tired, no, exhausted. My eyelids were heavier than usual. So tired. My mind chanted.
Right as I was able to stumble into the house, completely missing the note on the door, and went into my room, I took off my shoes and backpack and right as I hit the pillow I was faced with a beautiful feeling that took over my body.