3. Chapter One: The First Assignment
Day 1 – The First Meeting Reed Jenkins 5:00 P.M The guidance counselor’s office “You are probably confused am I right?” The guidance counselor asked us. We all nodded. It’s true though. We don’t really get much from what she said an hour ago. “Okay. This project is your finals and like what I said before if you–all of you-did not participate in this project then I guess your class won’t graduate senior year.” She paused. “Now all five are you going to be tested by physical, mental and emotional challenges here in school and at your own houses. After those challenges, you will be sent to a place where you are going to have the last challenge you are going to face. And yes, you are going to be excused for the whole week.” Everybody except Jennifer looked up at her and smiled. It’s great that we are going to be excused for a week. Even though the week where we will be excused is after the challenges here in school. The guidance counselor smiled. “Before I dismiss you, I have your first assignment.” We groaned loudly. It’s the first day of the project and we already have an assignment. I mean how isn’t this considered a torture? “You need to meet up at one place where at least all of you wanted to go. Then, you need a person who you think can have the same characteristics as the representative to your left. After that, the person to your left will report to me if he or she liked the person you picked.” I looked at my left and saw Pete Wentz staring at me like he’s going to kill me if I picked the wrong person. “The deadline for this assignment would be Monday next week. So you got tonight, Saturday and Sunday to finish this assignment. Questions?” Eugene Hygleson immediately raised his hand. “Does it need to be exactly one place or it can be at differe-“ “It needs to be at exactly one place.” The guidance counselor said. “But if you are going to a province or to another state, it’s okay to go to two places only. Other questions?” We said none and she dismissed us. I am actually relieved that she did because I have a feeling that this will go on forever. But I know better than believing that this will be over because Eugene would probably brag about finishing this assignment tonight. And I’m sure Jennifer would be up to it because maybe she has plans for the weekend. I don’t know. But I’m pretty sure a meeting will be held tonight. After the little talk with the creepy guidance counselor, Eugene suggested that we should plan this assignment before heading out to our houses and somehow we all agreed. Now we have to go to Denito’s burrito house so we can talk about this assignment and hopefully have plans on how we can do this assignment. After agreeing to go to the burrito house, we took our own way of going there. I drove my pickup truck while Jennifer drove her red Toyota Corolla. Pete on the other hand is with Eugene and Patrick riding the bus because none of them wanted to ride at our vehicles. The time I reached Denito’s I immediately sat on a chair and reserved 4 chairs for them to sit on. And after a few minutes, Jennifer entered the burrito house and sat on one of the chairs I reserved. We never talked except when we are asked what to eat. I ordered the pancake burrito while she only asked for water. It’s very obvious that she’s on a strict diet. Just after my burrito was served, the three dudes entered the burrito house and sat on the remaining chairs. For the first few minutes they just looked at me while I eat my burrito. It’s awkward seeing them watching me so I started the conversation. “What are your ideas on this assignment?” I asked. Jennifer suggested that we should go to a beach so she can get a tan but we all disagreed because there’s too much sun especially for Pete. Although I like the fact that I can prank a lot of people by replacing their lotion with used cooking oil. Eugene suggested a place where it’s quiet but then I thought how do you expect us to find other people in the area if it’s quiet. Then an idea struck me. How about we go to my dad’s old lake house. There are always a lot of people in the area and I can easily ask him for the keys. Especially after having high grades for the past few months. I told them my idea and they agreed. They said that if I get the keys tonight we can go there tomorrow using my pickup truck. We also agreed to meet here at 5 before heading to the lake. After that Jennifer, Eugene and Pete left. Leaving me and Patrick still sitting on our chairs. We don’t talk too much but I offered him a ride because he doesn’t have any money left with him. The way to his house is silent except for the songs playing on the radio. I never talked to him until we’re 3 minutes away from his house. That was the time when Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana was playing. He started to sing along to the chorus. “With the lights out, it's less dangerous Here we are now, entertain us I feel stupid and contagious Here we are now, entertain us A mulatto An albino A mosquito My libido Yeah” He sang while looking at the widow with his head resting on his palm. I was impressed. He is a good singer. Considering that he doesn’t look like he’s trying to sing. “You’re a great singer.” I complemented. He looked at me and gave me a smile. “Yeah. I used to sing this song a lot so I guess I pretty much know what to do to get me sounding good while I sing this song.” He smiled. I laughed at him and returned my attention back to driving. “What?” He asked with his eyebrows linked. I looked at him and said that nothing was wrong I just decided to laugh for no reason at all. He nodded and returned back to his old position where his head is on top of his propped elbow. The song was finished and we finally reached his house. He got out of my truck and asked me to wait before leaving. So there I sat inside my car alone, waiting for the dork to do something. After waiting for like another minute, he got out of his house and went straight to my truck. He knocked the passenger’s window as if he is going to say something. “Look I know this is a little bit crazy but I want to thank you for the ride. No one ever did that to me. As in ever.” He said looking down to his shoes. “So here’s a little token for you.” He mumbled while giving me a green snapback. I don’t know what to say. A person I just met three hours ago is giving me a snapback for what? Giving him a ride home? I smiled at him and took the snapback. He said he’ll be going to eat dinner and I agreed that he should. And that left me alone once again inside my car with a green snapback sitting on the passenger’s seat. Well at least, I agreed coming to the meeting tonight.