Now I didn’t consider myself a violent person, or someone who got caught up in trouble, so I couldn’t really perceive where I currently was. Sure I could be sly when I wanted to, but this was strange because I’ve never gotten caught during any of my mischievous doings. I guess I did publicly assault someone though. Whoops.
Ms. Peanis sat regally in her chair, looking down the bridge of her long nose at me. She criticized me with her reptilian eyes. Her face looked like Barbie gone wrong. Her hair was pulled into such a tight bun that all of her features were slightly upturned. I swore that woman was half lizard. She stretched her slender neck and peered over the edge of the desk, long claws folded together as if in prayer.
The leather of the chair squeaked uncomfortably as I shifted in my seat. To put it simply, my principal gave me the creeps.
“Hello Alexandria.” I bit my lip. I hated it when people used my full name. I couldn’t help noticing her unsettling lisp when she slurred the “x” in my name like a snake. Definitely a lizard. She unfolded her spidery fingers and rested them in her lap. “Harry.” She gave a slight nod to acknowledge his presence.
Harry sat slumped in his seat observing his nails while I probably looked like I had a metal pole taped to my spine. I wiped my sweaty palms on my jeans. In the next thirty seconds I had to come up with a convincing story to pin this all on Harry.
Ms. Peanis continued, “Now, I do not tolerate any sort of violence in my school. I would not be wasting my time if this was not true, but a teacher came to me with the report that he walked into his classroom only to find the two of you attacking one another.” She paused.
“Ms. Johnson,” I tried my best to sound scared. “I was simply sitting in my seat, minding my own business, when-”
“Did I ask you to speak, Miss Schultz?” She interjected sternly. I saw a smile play across Harry’s lips in my peripheral. I shrunk down a bit. I’d slug him in the face afterwards.
“Listen, I do not care who started this. You have both managed to thoroughly disrupt your class.” She gestured with her index finger to each of us. “I do not know how many times I must iterate this to students: You break the rules and you must face the consequences. And sit up, Mr. Styles, your posture is atrocious.” He straightened reluctantly.
No one messed with Ms. Peanis. I mean, you’d think she’d get a lot of crap with a last name like that, but all you had to do was see her striding through the halls towering over everyone and anyone and that would be enough to shit your pants. She was like the school principal from the Black Lagoon.
“Since the two of you have not managed to comply with my rules you will be given a detention for the next two weeks. And I am being extremely generous.”
“Wait, Ms. Penis, I mean Peanis,” her gaze sizzled at me. “But I have plans-”
Generous? Maybe it would’ve been generous if the only other alternative was being burned in the eternal flames of damnation in hell! Who did she think she was?!
“Miss Schultz, you should know by now that you should only speak when spoken to!” I clenched my jaw.
I leaned forward in my seat, gripping the armrests. “But honestly-”
“That. Is. Enough.” She slurred the “s” in “is” even longer than usual and I cringed back against the chair.
I had to get myself out of this. I couldn’t go to detention! I had a life! I visualized Frenchie as she waited for me at the nail salon but I never showed up. Oh my God, what would my dad do if he caught wind of this? He’d kill me for sure. Harry was effectively ruining my entire life! Might as well say goodbye to my social life now.
Ms. Peanis then gave us the typical you-know-better lecture that lasted what seemed like 164,387,374 minutes. I made note to check for any grey hair on the way out. As scary as she was I felt sleep pulling at my eyelids. She basically explained that we were irresponsible, but somehow achieved the feat of reiterating that in twenty-seven different ways.
“This is a warning. If this happens again there will be a suspension.” Yes, because two weeks of detention with the most annoying person in the world is a warning and not punishment at all. “Two hours after school in Room A12.”
This time Harry spoke up. “Wait, two hours? That’s ridiculous! I have a job! Plus, she attacked me- and look at my face!” I had shunned him this whole time, but stole a quick glance. He had a long, ugly scratch that ran across his cheek. Ha. I wasn’t pleased when I came to find I had broken a nail in exchange for his injury. OMG, this day couldn’t get any worse.
“Must I duct tape for your mouths!? Yes, two hours. No exceptions. Now out.” Well, that was abrupt. She acted as if we had been keeping her there for half an hour. I scowled on the way out and flipped her off mentally.
Schools of students swam the halls, chattering and glancing over their shoulders at me. But as I approached parted before me like little scared fish. I huffed, and then holding my head high and staring straight ahead plunged through the crowds. I let the whispers bounce off my invisible wall. Like Dad said, insecurity is weakness and weakness is disrespect.
I didn’t know what I was going to do. I’d probably go to school tomorrow and everyone would be saying I attacked Harry with a chainsaw. Some farfetched rumor would definitely be flying around. I made the choice to ignore Harry on the way out. If I had confronted him I would’ve ended up assaulting him again, which wouldn’t exactly be the best thing with my position right now.
I stared at the ground as I stalked the building, lost in my thoughts.
What do you even do in detention? A horrible image of clapping chalkboard erasers alone with Harry popped into my mind. I think I’d rather voluntarily rub a cheese grater against my forehead. All I could do was groan.
“Hey! Watch where you’re fucking going!” I yelled after bumping into someone. I looked back and saw whoever it was disappear around the corner. It must’ve been that new freak from my pre-calculus class. I didn’t know anyone else in this school with bright blue hair. She always sat in the back with her the hood of her black sweatshirt pulled up. Eww, I wondered if she ever washed that thing. I mean, she wore it every day. Probably doesn’t wash her hair either. The other day I was in the bathroom and she didn’t even wash her hands. Some people are just disgusting. And she never failed to have all that black eyeliner smudged on so that she looked like a raccoon. Oh my God I just touched that thing. I peeled off my sweater and tossed it in a trash bin. Shame to throw out a thousand dollar designer Valentino, but I could always get a new one.
I walked the halls until I came to the door marked A12. I peered into the dim window. I wasn’t sure if I was expecting something slightly more intimidating, but it was just an otherwise empty classroom except for the stacks of textbooks and supplies occupying the corners. Was this even the right place? None of the lights were on and I couldn’t see anyone inside.
If Harry didn’t come I would kill him. He got us into this mess and deserved to be punished. I, on the other hand, shouldn’t have even been there. It was his fault. My grades weren’t any of his business. I did what I wanted. And I didn’t want to be some nerd. I was far above that.
I felt a hand on my shoulder and yelped. “Ah!” I spun around. “What the hell, Harry?!” Okay maybe I take back wishing he came.
“Ladies first, sweetheart,” he said opening the door. I pushed passed him into the dark room. The door slammed behind us and everything was cloaked in darkness. Only a light glow came from the small window. Why did it have to be so overcast? It was kind of creepy.
“Great, the lights don’t work.” I said flicking the switch up and down again and again.
He grinned, his teeth ghostly white. “What, you afraid of the dark?” Harry raised an eyebrow.
“No!” I replied a bit too quickly, because I was in fact a little frightened by not being able to see anything.
“Have a seat,” said a man’s voice. I pretty much jumped clear out of my skin. I blinked in attempt to make my eyes adjust. A stout little man was seated at the desk at the other end of the room. I hadn’t noticed when I first walked in because there was so little light. “Right up here.” He gestured with his chubby hand to the desk right in front of him. He flicked the lamp on his desk on. That would’ve been a relief, but it lit up the man’s face like he was about to tell a ghost story. I couldn’t help wondering what the hell he was doing before, just sitting in the dark in this eerie little room. Some teachers are fucking creepy. I wouldn’t be surprised if this was some horror movie and he locked the door pulled out a saw. Okay, I think anyone would be surprised, but you get the general idea.
We were instructed by the creepy little man to take the textbooks in the corner and erase all of the marks out of them. There were at least two hundred books. I grabbed one off the top of the Mount Vesuvius of books and brought it back to the desk. World History. I began flipping through the pages. Guess you have to start somewhere.
Harry waddled over juggling like ten books in his arms and slammed them down on the desk next to me. I cough from the cloud of dust. He maliciously smiled down at me like: I simply can’t wait to torture you.
This was going to be the longest two hours of my life.