The large lunch room seemed louder than usual. Perhaps it was because of the strained silence that filled our little trio or the way that Louis shut down every attempt at conversation as he shoved his pasta around his plate. He had one eye on the table and one eye on the door, his leg shaking fervently under the table. I shifted in my seat as Rebecca turned to look at me, her beaming smile somehow managed to make me feel uncomfortable, I wasn't sure why. Maybe it was her large eyes that made me feel like I was under inspection, being watched under the strong gaze of a large magnifying glass. And perhaps I was. Everyone was peeking glances at our table, waiting to see what Louis would do, if Jimmy and Ed would attack him again. It was beginning to get tiring.
“So, what are your plans for the summer holidays, Kate?” She asked, the ends of her dip dyed hair sweeping the table as she threw it over her shoulder.
Lillian looked over at me, her bright eyes sending me a flashing warning. “Um, nothing much.” Louis’s leg had gone still, Lillian’s eyes went wider, “just relaxing with my friends.” I was pretty sure Louis had stopped breathing; Lillian’s eyes were so big I wondered if they would pop out, “I might visit my Grandma.” There it was, the quick kick under the table. Rebecca didn’t reply as I spun around in my seat.
Jimmy and Ed were beginning their fast approach towards us, their expressions were menacing and their eyes almost seemed to have a dark cloud covering them. In short, they were mad, they were livid. “You,” Ed ground out as soon as he was close enough.
Louis’s fists clenched as Jimmy laid a beefy hand on his shoulder, his eyes flashed and his gaze caught mine. I knew what he was going to do next; he was going to do the one thing that he didn’t want to do. He was going to fight back.
The whole lunchroom that was once filled with loud chatter became a room with hushed whispers. I knew that they loved it, they loved the audience, they loved having people watch them doing what they do best. Be pathetic. Jimmy opened his mouth to say something, his dry lips forming words that fell before he was able to make a sound; the pair looked beyond shocked as Louis shook off his heavy hand.
“Oh, you’re definitely going to pay now.” Ed spat, anger spilling out of his words as he grabbed onto Louis’s shirt and wrenched him up right.
He made a fist, he pulled it back.
Louis flinched, bracing himself.
And I decided to take a stand.
“STOP!” My voice was loud and it carried itself through the quieting lunchroom. “You all watch on the edge of seats in sick anticipation for the fight that's about to happen and you do nothing? You say nothing?” The attention I get at my sudden outburst makes me shy away slightly, it makes my voice crack at the end of my sentence that was more supposed to sound strong and steady instead of weak and shaky; but I won’t give up on my best friend just because of the many eyes that seemed to be directing their gazes at me. It’s not that easy. “There’s two of them, and how many of us? It so stupid that we can’t take stand and why not? Because they’re bullies? Pathetic excuse!” Now how do I finish it up? Soft murmuring takes place as I stand awkwardly not knowing what to say next.
Luckily I don’t have to. I turn just in time to see Ed stumble into the table behind us and fall backwards, his head landing in Mary’s pasta. “Fight and take a stand right?” Louis muttered, his words only heard by me as he winked, his eyes shining lividly with an sort of excitement that made him look alive. And so quickly, the power that had been drained out of him filled him once more and he glowed so brightly that it took me a moment to register his happiness.
Slowly, the deafening silence becomes a room of deafening applause. I guess the good conquers all after all.