I hated being the new kid in town. The fat jokes, the acne jokes, and whatever else the other high school kids could come up with. In my defense, I was an average weight for my height. When you’re five foot one and a half, every little pound seemed much more obvious. My height also lent itself to some really wonderful bullying scenarios when we moved. The good thing is they never lasted long. I could make any bully stop. How I did it was my secret though.
I always tried to pay attention to what I saw other girls my age wearing when we moved to a new town. I found if I matched my style of clothes with what was popular, I could avoid being noticed easier. If I ever moved to a place where no one would notice me, things would be so much better for me and the rest of the school. I was hoping it would be better in Cattle Run, Alabama. It wasn’t exactly the style center of the universe. Culture shock hit me as soon as we arrived. We didn’t have a lumberjack community in Arizona. Lumberjack was the only thing I could think of that would inspire so much flannel. Fitting in might be tougher than I thought. The second thing I noticed was just how many white kids there were here. I was going to stand out in a bad way no matter what I wore. Now, I was anticipating the sombrero jokes.
I knew how important the first impressions were, so I tried to set everything just right. I found some used clothes stores, toned down my makeup, and I even plastered a smile on my face. I went so far, I even convinced myself it would be a good day.
My dad didn’t share my enthusiasm. He knew what happened at my other schools and so I think he prepared for the worst. “No matter what they say or do, don’t think about it. Don’t let it stick in your head. We don’t need a repeat of your other school experiences.” dad said as he dropped me off. Even with his warnings still ringing in my ears, I was determined to fit in well enough to avoid my past as much for myself as for anyone on the receiving end of it. That good mood and plastered smile lasted four minutes.
I would say some people noticed me when I came in, but that would be a lie. The clamor and general chaos of the school morning died in a wave as everyone turned to see what had the kids near the doors rubbernecking. I was right about the demographics of the school. I wish it was just the kids, even some of the adults wore that confused expression. Even the most tanned girls in the cafeteria were ten shades lighter than me. I didn’t think it would be that much of a deal. That was when I saw Mr. Dunn. He was a good foot taller than I was, had the perfect swooping side parted hair, and a look of absolute hatred on his face. Most of the kids seemed to look more curious, he looked like he was holding himself back from attacking me on sight. I did see a few groups of kids wearing the same look, it just looked more scary on an adult whose job was to watch out for my well-being. I had enough experience with new schools to keep my feet moving and act as though I didn’t notice the looks. I was used to the curious looks, The look on Mr. Dunn’s pale face was a new one though. I don’t know how many people I passed on my way to the office. I think I held my breath the entire time I was walking down the hall. I spotted the office and felt the pressure of the attention break when I stepped through the door. I searched through my backpack for my transfer slip to give the secretary. She was on the phone so I waited patiently. The relief of being in a safe space evaporated with the first look from the secretary. She flashed the same heated look I got from Mr. Dunn before composing herself and tightened her face into a fake smile. I wouldn’t let her know it got to me. “Hi, I’m Mary Reynolds. My father said you would be expecting me.”
The process was familiar but had an extra weight added as she continued to hold that fake smile. Most schools were happy to have a straight A student. That didn’t seem to matter here. They assured me they had an AP English class when we called from Albuquerque, but the secretary said the closest correlation she had available was standard senior English. The disappointment spread across every thought at once. Shifting to regular English after writing a fifteen page synopsis of Dante’s Inferno would never be a challenge. There was something in the secretary’s eyes when she told me my schedule, that felt like it was very personal. “I am sure ya will find are English classes much more challengin.” she said. She was obviously a product of their wonderful English program here. The rest of my classes were available without any exceptions. Hopefully I was wrong about their English class.
I looked at my schedule for third period and walked into room twelve. I looked for a seat up front. I wanted the teacher to know I was studious and not one of the back row dwellers. I sat in the seat and continued to ignore the looks from the students. I wasn’t here for them anyway. I only had five months left of school before I could go to college back home. If I could ace AP English, this English class wouldn’t be difficult. I could feel a buzzing pressure in my head, something hateful and malicious trying to get in. Someone really hated me already if I could sense their feelings in my head without looking at them. I wouldn’t dignify it by turning to see who it was. If I did it would get stuck in my head and bad things would start my first day. The man who stared at me with so much hate that morning, walked to the front of the class. His light blue shirt was perfectly pressed, every part of him was put together with the details even a drill sergeant couldn’t find faulty. I looked back at my schedule, third period was senior English with Mr. Dunn. If I just did my work and stayed on top of everything I would be able to avoid anything personal from him.
“Good mornin class, as ya can see there is a new student in class today. Her name is miss Mary umm how do we pronounce your last name Mary.” He rolled the r in my first name just to make it stand out more. I wanted so bad to lash out at this obvious act of hostility, but I remembered what my dad said. “It’s Reynolds sir.” I said keeping my accent a crisp mid western sound. If I wasn’t careful I would accidentally slip into a horrible version of his accent. “Right, Mary Reynolds, I hope everyone helps her feel like she is welcome in our country.” He rolled the R’s on my first and last name. I know my face was turning red at his insinuation that I wasn’t an American. I also knew if I said anything it would come out hot and mark me for even worse attention. The students chuckling at his joke let me know I wasn’t getting any support there either.
“Now if we can turn the book to page two hunred an eighty-five, we will continue with the Tale-Tell Heart.” My mouth dropped open a little but I caught it before Mr. Dunn could spot it. We covered that in our seventh grade English. “Also, Please turn in your assignments from Friday.” he said without looking up from his book. I could hear the papers being shuffled up the aisles. He sprung from his chair and flashed a strange look at me before gathering them from the desk behind me before they could be handed up to me. He leaned over and said “You may turn it in late tomorrow, Mary Reynolds.” It only took me a moment to realize why he took the papers before they were handed to me. I had no idea what the assignment was or the page length. I wasn’t going to let him catch me off guard like that though. I quickly looked at the pages in the hand of the blonde boy sitting next to me. The title on the top page said “The Raven” and it looked like each paper was two pages apiece.
The rest of the class went by quickly with Mr. Dunn reading the Tale-Tell Heart as though we were unable to read ourselves. I made it a point to get out of the class as fast as I could before he could say or do something to push me further. I tried to think about anything other than my experience in his class, but the way everyone became magically silent as I walked past them the rest of the day didn’t give me any thing else to focus on.
When I got home I was alone for the first few hours. I used that time to write a paper about The Raven and made sure to include the similarities in Edgar Allen Poe’s depressed condition and the darker lines of the poem. It wasn’t the best paper I could write, but writing from memory about a poem I read five years before, I felt I did pretty well with it. Then I began writing notes and rereading the Tell-Tale Heart to make sure it was fresh in my mind.
Something I wasn’t used to, getting my homework done before the sun went down. Dad wouldn’t be home for another hour. I thought a walk around the block would help me avoid the nightmares that destroyed so many people’s lives tonight. I could clear my mind, maybe even find something good about being here. I walked for a while then just sat and enjoyed the unusually warm January day. I was about to go back home when the blonde haired boy from English walked up to me. I steeled myself for the worst. When he said “Hi.” I let out a breath and relaxed just a little.
“Hi, you’re in my English class aren’t you?” I said. I wanted to say something witty or something cute. I just couldn’t make my mouth agree with my brain.
“Yeah, I’m Tony Seeder. Sorry for Mr. Dunn. He can be pretty nasty if he wants to be.” He said.
Wow, I wasn’t used to people being nice to me my first day. I had a few that pretended to be nice but something about Tony felt honest. “So he doesn’t treat everyone like he did me?” I already knew the answer but I want to keep Tony talking. He’s cute and actually approached me.
Tony broke out into a wide grin. It highlighted a dimple on his left cheek and his blue eyes lit up. “Are you kidding? He is our welcome wagon here. He makes sure everyone feels right at home their first day.” Tony joked.
I just looked at him with a stupid expression that’s trapped between disbelief and damn he’s cute. “Has anyone actually welcomed you to town yet?” he asked. “
“Yeah, I would say you just did.” I said trying to avoid getting embarrassed by my bravery.
Tony looked at me and shook his head smiling even more. Now I could see a second dimple on the other side of his grin. “Oh, He’s going to hate you. You’re smart and pretty. That’s like combining nuclear fuel rods in his world.” he said.
It took me a second to figure out what he said. Not because it was over my head, I just wasn’t expecting a physics reference from someone in a town like this. Maybe I misjudged the town based on what I saw on TV. “So do you think he will go critical at some point?” I asked keeping the joke going.
“I think he is always one step away from critical all the time. He’s been like that since he got here. Military school kicked him out and he came here.” he said.
“Well, I can’t imagine why.” I said. Before Tony could say anything else a blue Dodge Charger pulled up and the window rolled down.
“Do you need a ride home honey?” my dad asked. I noticed the extra second he looked at Tony. I didn’t want to go yet but I didn’t want to give dad any reason to worry on my first day. I wouldn’t be expressing my gift here, it almost killed the last person who sparked it. I also didn’t want to be embarrassed in front of Tony.
I was about to get in the car with dad when Tony thrust his hand in the window. “Hello Mr. Reynolds, My names Tony.” Tony said.
I wanted to slap my forehead but I just had to wait for it. It never came. Dad just shook his hand looking between the two of us. “Actually dad is Dr. Reynolds, He’s a Psychiatrist.” I said. Usually dad was rather gruff with anyone calling him mister. For some reason he was giving Tony a rare break.
“Oh, My apologies Dr. Reynolds. I understand that’s very hard to achieve. I too hope to have a PhD one day.” Tony said. That caused something I hadn’t seen in a few years. Dad actually smiled.
“What do you plan to get your PhD in young man?” dad asked. I hated his young man/young woman thing he did to anyone my age. Tony didn’t seem to take offense to it though.
“Computational Physics, sir.” Tony said. My jaw may have dropped a little as a huge grin spread across my dad’s face.
“That sounds like an excellent plan. I’m sorry I have to steal Mary for dinner.” dad said. He actually sounded sorry. I was beginning to doubt everything I knew about my dad.
Tony stuck out his hand to shake mine. I thought dad wouldn’t have a problem with that too. When our fingers touched I could feel the warmth of his hand spread all the way up my arm. Tony twisted his wrist until my hand was on top of his. I thought I knew what was coming next but he let my hand go. I was so sure he was going to kiss the back of my hand. I could picture it. I could feel his lips on the back of my hand. I could also feel my entire face burning with embarrassment.
“He seems like a good kid Mary, how was the rest of your day?” Dad asked. I don’t remember getting in the car, riding home, or even going in the house.
My face flushed again. “It was fine dad, nothing to worry about.” I said. My brain was still reeling. I was so used to being ostracized that I didn’t know how to process what I was feeling.
“So no one made you want to have a nightmare?” he asked.
I thought about Mr. Dunn but he was crowded out by images of Tony. “Yeah, one teacher did but I have it under control.” I said.
“You’ve said that before. Are you sure you don’t want me to transfer you out of that class?” dad asked.
I instantly thought about Tony sitting right next to me everyday in third period. “No, I think I have a good handle on it. He is all bark and no bite. Besides its English dad, you know how good I am in that class.” I hoped that was good enough for dad. The idea of putting up with Mr. Dunn was easy if Tony was there. It must have been a good enough reason. Dad dropped the subject.
“Tony seems rather nice.” dad said. I knew he was testing the waters to see if I was willing to talk about that subject. Even at home he couldn’t turn the Psychiatrist thing off.
“Yeah, I just met him. He welcomed me to the town. I didn’t know people actually still did that.” I said.
Dad had one of those looks I could never decipher. “Down here there seem to be some nice people. The nurses bought me a fruit basket for my first day of work. I don’t have anything to worry about with Tony do I?” Dad said.
“I just met him dad, I’ll let you know if you ever need to worry.” I said. Even as I said it, the image of Tony holding my hand like that floated around my mind. He called me smart and pretty, No one ever called me both of those things and meant it.
I stood in front of Mr. Dunn’s class. I was confused how I should feel going in there. I was sure Mr. Dunn would say or do something horrible but I also knew I had Tony in my corner and he would be supportive even if he didn’t dare speak out in class. I went in and took my seat. There were a few snickers as I walked past people. The smile on Tony’s face just seemed to drag me to the front in spite of anything they said or did. I took a second to put my assignment on Mr. Dunn’s desk and then sat down. I tried to look straight ahead. My head had other plans though as my eye’s and face were drawn to Tony’s face. Before I was ready to stop looking at Tony, Mr. Dunn came in. I broke my gaze and looked straight ahead. If Mr. Dunn wanted to be hateful to me that was fine. There was no reason for him to start in on Tony too.
It worked. Mr. Dunn called role, careful to roll the R’s on my name. I pretended I didn’t notice. I’m not sure if he did anything else hateful. If he did it slid off my back. I went along with the lesson, wrote down the assignment and was ready to leave. Mr. Dunn called my name again just as we were leaving. He didn’t say anything, he didn’t even look up at me from his book. He just handed me the assignment I just gave him. It had a zero on it in big red marker. I blinked at it, I never got a B, let alone a zero. There was a long mark through the entire thing and it had “Late” written on it. My blood began to boil. I could tell he wouldn’t look up unless I yelled at him. If I did that he had a reason to write me up. I choked back what I wanted to say and said “Thank You Mr. Dunn.” and turned to leave. I wasn’t going to let him get to me. He called my name again and handed me a slip of paper. I blinked at it twice and almost said something else. I thought better of it and went to the office with my write-up.
“I see you have already made friends with your teacher. I guess it’s a good thing we decided to keep you out of AP English.” The secretary said as she read the note. I didn’t say anything. I didn’t want her to be able to confirm my attitude to the principal before I had a chance.
The Principal was a round looking man. Every part of his body looked like it was made of dough. I sat in the seat in front of his desk feeling like a dwarf. I could barely see over the desk in the low sitting chair. I got the impression he had it like that on purpose. It forced anyone seated there to look up at him.
“Why would you cuss out our favorite teacher Ms. Reynolds.” Principal Edwards asked as he laced his sausage like fingers together on the desk.
“I didn’t, I told him Thank you and started to my next class.” I said hoping he would be reasonable.
“The note says you said, and I quote, Fuck you Mr. Dunn.” He stared at me with his beady gray eye’s.
“I’m not looking to have a problem with any teacher, I turned in the assignment he assigned Friday, he handed it back with it marked late, then I said thank you and turned to leave.” I said.
“Why did you turn it in late? That is very disrespectful young lady.” he said.
“I started school yesterday and wasn’t made aware of the assignment until yesterday.” I said and returned his gaze.
“Since you just started I am willing to mark this up to a misunderstanding, Don’t let this become a habit.” He said and waved the back of his bulging hand to dismiss me.
I definitely didn’t have a pal in the principal. I left his office just in time to see Mr. Dunn sitting next to the secretary. Both of them were red from laughing. I was careful to not even look at them too long. I just burst out of the room trying to hurry to fourth period. Laughter followed behind me.
Things managed to even out as long as I didn’t talk in Mr. Dunn’s class. Even when he was wrong, I somehow managed to keep my mouth shut. I had a feeling he did it solely to goad me.
Things with Tony made everything better. He was happy to listen to me rant about Mr. Dunn, sometimes he even added color commentary. We spent all of our free time together and sometimes we even partnered on projects. Tony was really smart. If he used even half his intelligence in college they would be begging him to write his PhD thesis early. We didn’t get as much time together as we wanted due to his farm chores and my dad’s perfect timing. I know we would have kissed for the first time weeks earlier if it wasn’t for dad’s continuous rides home. When we did finally kiss, I saw Tony coming up to the side of the road where I always sat. I got up, walked over to him and kissed him before he could even say hi. I didn’t want to tell him it was my first kiss. I guess there was a lot I didn’t tell him. I told him about some of the problems I had at other schools but I didn’t tell him why some of it happened. I definitely didn’t mention my nightmares. The kiss was everything I dreamed it would be.
I don’t know how dad knew something was different after that, but he stopped showing up to give me a ride home everyday. He’s a psychiatrist, he probably knew I was going to do it before I did. I think more than anything he was happy I had a normal girls life. No one thought I was normal since I was twelve. Normal was good. I wish I stayed normal.
We managed to make it to two months before graduation and more importantly prom. Tony asked my dads permission to take me to prom. That was the sweetest thing anyone ever did for me.
Mr. Dunn never let up but as long as I didn’t speak he was happy. Something changed though. He started grading Tony’s papers harsher. One day, he didn’t say anything but handed Tony one of those slips of paper. I hurried to leave the class and catch Tony before he got to the office. I could hear Mr. Dunn laughing behind me as I left. I caught up to Tony. “What did he write you up for?” I asked.
Tony was holding his lips in a tight grimace. Tony didn’t answer, but he handed me the note. It said Tony threatened Mr. Dunn physically. I couldn’t understand how he was able to make anything up and get away with it.
Tony came out of the principal’s office and walked right past me. I noticed he made a small motion with his hand for me to follow. When we got around a corner Tony ducked into a space between lockers.
“They say I can’t be around you, that you are causing me to be violent. If they think I am around you they are going to suspend me.” Tony said looking a little green.
“That would hurt you getting into college. What can we do?” I asked. He knew this school better than I did. Surely there was an appeals board or something like that at this school.
“I don’t know if we can do anything. Unless Mr. Dunn changes his mind we can’t go to prom or be seen together. I can’t be away from you that long Mary.” Tony said.
“Let me talk to my dad, he is a well-respected Psychiatrist. He is good with people.” I said. I could see a little hope creep into Tony’s face. I tried to have the same look but I also had experience with people like Mr. Dunn before. I don’t think talking would help with his brand of hatred.
I asked dad to call the school, but he wouldn’t do it. “These two months will fly by and then you won’t have to worry about him anymore. I don’t even really have a reason to call, you didn’t get in trouble. I can’t just call for someone else’s kid, no matter how much I like him. I’m sorry Mary. Unless Mr. Dunn changes his mind, I don’t believe we can do anything about it.” I’m sure dad had more to say. I just didn’t want to listen anymore.
When dad came in to check on me before bed, I thought about Tony kissing me so he wouldn’t try to stop me. I lay in bed and thought of every nasty thing Mr. Dunn did since I got here. I focused on what he did to Tony since that was the strongest memory. I kept thinking about them until I fell asleep. For the last several months, all of my dreams were about Tony kissing me, dancing with me, and the newest was Tony in a tux bowing in front of a limo. Tonight things would have to change.
The Shadows started building around me as I stood in the misty part of my mind. When I was young this was enough to scare me into a panic attack. I wasn’t even sure if I could control what happened once I was in the nightmare. Then everything started getting more defined and I focused even more on the hatred Mr. Dunn wielded like a sword over my head.
The halls of the school were empty. I could see a plume of cigar smoke drifting out of the principal’s office. I walked into the room and saw Mr. Dunn in a military uniform, smoking a cigar, and the secretary was…Oh dear lord. I never needed that image in my head.
“Oh Mr. Dunn.” My dream self said softly. I knew it wouldn’t take much to bring him into my world. He hated me too much to ignore me for long. When I looked back at him the secretary was gone and he was glaring at me.
He tried to pick up his phone. “One call to immigration will get rid of you.” he spat. Too bad his phone vanished.
I smiled back at him. “Is there a problem sir?” I asked in the most artificially sweet voice I could. I saw him reach for the gun in his shoulder holster. “There wouldn’t be a need for that.” I said. I pictured what I wanted and then let it go. He was wearing an old-fashioned dunce cap and short pants with a coordinating shirt. When he saw what he was wearing he fell back into his seat.
Then I let it all go. The classroom was endless and he was sitting in the middle of every student. All of the students were a different race and color. Then they began asking him questions. None of them spoke in English. I think one was even speaking Klingon. That was one I didn’t count on. He had some strange fears. Finally he jumped up and ran from the room. He was out of the door before I could react so I tapped into another one of his fears. I followed at a slow walk with everyone behind me still talking in a loud drone. He was plowing a path through spider webs and thorn covered red roses. No matter how they tore at him he kept running. I pushed a little more and made the hallway a spiral. No sense in letting him out easy. Finally he broke free and out of the door. He was bleeding from hundreds of cuts and the crowd of students were still shouting their questions.
I woke up covered in sweat. I had to clean up without waking dad. If dad knew I went for a dream walk on purpose he would never let me out of the house again. After mom didn’t come back from a dream walk ten years ago, dad had a reason to be scared. I had something she didn’t though. Practice and a purpose that mattered to me.
Third period was interesting. Mr. Dunn refused to even look at me. He spoke in the clearest English he could, dropping his fake southern accent. His shirt didn’t match his pants and they looked like he pulled them from the laundry basket instead of the perfect creased style he normally wore. I was waiting for the principal to call Tony and apologize but he never did.
I snuck over to Tony’s house so no one from school could say they saw us together. Tony kept talking about how bad Mr. Dunn looked. I couldn’t hold it in. I told Tony what I did for us. I didn’t get the reaction I expected. Tony pulled back and looked at me like he had never seen me before. When I left, Tony was still looking at me in disbelief. Just as I was about to climb out of his window, he spoke up. “I don’t know if I believe in anything like that, but you do. Please don’t ever hurt someone for me, even if it’s in your mind.” He said the last part with so much formality it felt like the last thing he might ever say to me.
I was lost. I think my dad tried to talk to me but I wasn’t listening. I can’t believe I threw that at Tony without any preamble. I would have acted the same way. I got so caught up in finally letting go and allowing myself to dream walk. I didn’t know how to fix it. If I talked to dad about it, I would have to admit that I did it on purpose like mom use to do. He would freak out long before he would try to help me. I was going to have to fix this myself.
The next day at school Mr. Dunn wasn’t just back to his usual self. He was barking at any kids that dared to answer any questions in class. Tony gave me a look like he was searching for a scientific answer to a spiritual problem. The only way I would convince Tony is if I did a dream walk with him. I just wanted to be with him, to go to prom, to have a normal life. I had an idea but it could backfire. When I turned to look at Tony one last time before leaving class something in his eyes convinced me to do it anyway.
As I lay in bed, I tried to hold so many thoughts together I thought my brain would explode. I risked not coming back like mom or worse I would never fall asleep and it would have been all for nothing.
There was some crazy end of the world movie playing in Tony’s dream. I walked up to him as a comet and a giant lizard came towards him. I turned both into more shadows. Tony blinked and turned to look at me. “I can’t see you, did you see everything they will do to me if I see you. They don’t care if I love you.” He said. I can’t believe he said it. He actually said it. I walked up to him and grabbed his hand. When he looked back at me I was wearing a beautiful red dress and he was wearing a tux. He pulled back from my hand. “I can’t let you hurt anyone. Especially Mr. Dunn.”
Why would he be so concerned with Mr. Dunn. There was something I didn’t understand. I hope it wouldn’t mess anything up. “Tony, I love you too. Please come with me. You’ll see that I won’t hurt anyone.”
We were standing in the school. It was the hallway just outside of the gymnasium. I walked through the door with Tony still holding my hand behind me. All of the kids were sitting properly in seats separated by sex. The lights and streamers proclaimed this to be prom, but the only couple dancing was Mr. Dunn and the secretary. I pushed the secretary back into a chair and drained all of her color to black and white. Mr. Dunn just glared at me. His head was getting larger and turning red like a cartoon. “Mr. Dunn, do you want your dreams to come true? Is your hate greater than any desire?”
Tony blinked at the secretary then back at Mr. Dunn. “Uncle John, What did I do to deserve losing Mary?” It was my turn to blink. Uncle John. Now I knew why he took our relationship so personally.
“Let me show you how to make your dreams come true Mr. Dunn. Please?” I said. Mr. Dunn’s head was normal size again and he looked sad when he saw Tony and I holding hands. “I promise I won’t hurt your nephew. I love him and he loves me. Isn’t that enough?” I asked.
I took Tony’s other hand and put it on my back, right on cue a love song began playing over the speakers. Tony was looking straight in my eyes. There were actual tears running down his face even in the dream. We spun around and I felt like I was filling with light. My red dress was glowing with the most beautiful light and every time Tony spun me, the color splashed out across the students. The color seemed to bring them back to normal. Before long all of us were dancing. I looked for Mr. Dunn. He was still standing on the side of the dance floor looking dejected. When I spotted the secretary I could see what was wrong. Mr. Dunn, for all his bravado, was shy. I reached my hand out toward him. Tony looked slightly nervous. I put the finger of my other hand across his lips and winked at him. The floor beneath Mr. Dunn became a moving sidewalk. It moved him closer to the secretary. I could tell she was hoping he would make it all the way to her. He started to backtrack. But I was ready and sped it up. If he tried to avoid taking the risk any more he would end up smashing into her. I slowed it down at the last second and Mr. Dunn wobbled on his feet. The secretary reached out for him but managed to stumble as well. They caught each other at the last second and were able to stay on their feet. I could feel a pressure release when they fell into each others arms. They joined the throngs of dancing couples. He still wouldn’t look at us, but he seemed to be avoiding us on purpose. I wasn’t sure if that was due to him being shy or not wanting to see his nephew with me. Either way he was at least tolerating it. I didn’t want to wake up but my alarm decided otherwise.
Everything worked the way I hoped and Tony and I were able to go to prom. Graduation was amazing as well. We spent every minute together we could, until it was time to start college. Then we had to face reality. He was accepted at MIT. I was going to Arizona State. We might as well be continents apart. His workload and mine never seemed to match either. I wasn’t going to get to see him until break. How many seconds from now is that? I would love to be able to spend even an hour with him. I mean a girl can dream.