Changing Jake

Alex visited her grandparents in Patmos every year since the age of four. After five years, she returns, memories of past summers at Patmos filling her with excitement. But when they tell her that Eula, Yaya's old and bestest friend, has asked them to look after her bratty teenage son Jake, Alex is far from pleased. Not only does she have to cart Jake around Patmos, but she's expected to make him from a brat to a decent human being, and from what she's heard, Jake is far from being anyway near nice, let alone intelligent.
But with a boiling hot sun, beautiful surroundings, and Alec's determined attitude to life, can she do it?
This is entering into the Sony award competition so lots of feedback would be great.


5. The take on Jake

Ok, so yesterday was strange. Strange, fun, and something I needed. After all, there's nothing like a gorgeous, kind, and open minded gentlemen to take your mind off things (even if it was just a one time thing.) But I was brought up in a home where confronting your own emotions was more important then life itself-at least, our theory was that if you can't deal with your own shit, then how are you expected to deal with life's shit? So I've decided to get Jake alone, by himself,  and spill it. 

All day we avoid each other. Of course, there was the matter of breakfast, but Bapi was reading the newspaper and I was pretending to read my book (*staring at the same page for half an hour*) so Jake couldn't talk. But it was getting harder and harder-in the end I managed to skip lunch and holed myself up on the roof. I remember my childhood years spent here sucking on peach stones and flicking through the pages of my book, stretched out like a cat basking in the sun. In those days, my life was simply a blue wall that I could change with the seasons. Now my life goes by so fast I can't catch a breath-and those are the days you'll catch me on the roof, hoping I can stay trapped in that gap of time. That moment where there are no boys you feel a strong, magnetic need to help. And a strong, magnetic pull that you don't want but can't help.

'Tutu? Are you there?' Yaya's head pokes up through the trapdoor and she smiles, stretching out a frail hand and placing it on mine. 'Jake is looking for you, my sweet.'

I look up in supprise. 'Really?' 

She smiles, and her eyes glint in a way that makes me think she knows everything, and always has. 'Go easy on him, Alex. He is special, that boy.' And then she's gone, leaving me sitting on the roof wondering what she meant. 

Jake isn't downstairs or on the porch. It's getting onto late afternoon and the sky is already that light, musky blue it goes when it is day but mostly night. Unlike the day of the lake the air is thick and heavy with the scent of oranges, and I step lightly onto the ground, noticing a slight imprint of footsteps going down the decline towards the beach. Holding onto the sagging fence I tread carefully along the slope, until I reach the beach gate. Opening it, I slip onto the sand.

A figure is sitting by the water, and I stand for a moment, looking at the way he lets the grains sift through his fingers, the breeze blowing his dark black hair back across his forehead.

'Hi.' He jumps, looking up to see me standing over him.

'Alex.' Staggering up he stares at me for a moment, and then begins to pace up and down, a look of intent struggle showing clearly on his sharpened features.

'I-I'm sorry for the way I reacted. I have no right over you and I had no right to call you what I did, and I suppose I'm just jealous.' He stops, shrugging, a wry smile spreading across his face. 'I'm jealous. That's it.' Still not looking at me he carries on talking, getting faster and faster. 'But we have to live together, all summer, don't we? I can't, I never have been able to bear tension much. So I guess I just can't bear it anymore here then I could in America-and,' He trails off, for the first time looking at me straight on. 'And it's harder when you like a person and they don't like you. Even more when you've hurt them when they were just trying to sort out your own crap. That's what you were doing, wasn't it? Trying to sort out my life. Well, I'm sorry to disappoint but I can't just be fixed.' He kicks at an incoming wave, sending a shower of salt spray over his head. 'I can't be your cliche.' 

I stay silent. Maybe he's right. I want to change him and I don't even know why. I don't even know where to start.

'I suppose I just know there's something better in you.' I move closer, taking his hand. 'And I think you need to know that too.' 

He stares for a moment, a lock of stiff wet hair plastered to his forehead. 'I guess.' 

Suddenly I feel a sudden urge to laugh, and I point to the churning waves, my pulse racing. 'Wanna do something totally cliched, stupid, and sort of romantic?'

I don't wait for an answer. Running towards the sea I jump, and before I can regret it were plunging into icy cold water, the last rays of the sun going behind a cloud as we dive beneath the surface.

'Your crazy!' He holds my hand tighter, paddling in panicked, splashing circles. 

'Completely!' Laughing, I pull him to me so I've got one arm supporting him around his waist.

That's the thing with yesterday and Today. Instead of being supported, I can be the strong one.

And that's what I like. 



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