I walk to my locker and grab my books. I shut it and as I am walking down the hallway, I see my friends, or who were my friends laughing against the lockers. As I begin to pass them, their laughter dies down and I receive glares from them that could make a person turn into a pile of mush. These people were that highest of high-schoolers. They are the ‘popular’ group and I used to be one of them. I keep my head down and try and ignore the hurtful snickers and jokes that they throw my way. I rush down the stairs and escape the horrors of my past, but not without shedding a tear.
“Hey are you ok?”
I turn and see Samson standing there, with a concerned look on his face. “Yeah, I’m fine” I say, wiping a tear from my face.
“You don’t look okay What was that back there?”
“Nothing. I don’t want to talk about it. Let’s go. You ready?”
He nods and we head out to my car. “Where do you want to grab lunch from?”
“Well what are you in the mood for?”
“I don’t care.”
“Then I have an idea” he says with a smile on his face. “Let me drive.”
I get out and head over to the passenger side. He starts driving and when we get on the highway I start to worry. “Where are we going? We don’t have that much time.”
“Just sit back and relax. We will be there soon enough.”
I sit back in the seat and watch the other cars pass us. Not a mere 10 minutes later does Samson get off the highway and turn into a little ice cream parlor. My face is washed with disbelief.
“Here” he says so casually.
“I used to go here as a little kid, with my mom and sisters. How did you know?”
“I didn’t” he responds, looking at me with honest eyes, “I just thought you could use and ice cream and I come here with my brothers and sister in the summer.”
I jump out of the car, grab my bag and run up the steps. The bell on the door jingles telling that a customer is here. I turn and see Samson laughing at me.
“You seem really happy.”
“Um hello! It’s ice cream!”
He smiles and we go to order. There are like 30 different flavors that are all homemade and my eyes grow wider as I read all the different combinations.
“What can I get you two?” says a little woman behind the counter.
I look one more time and tell her “Small Mint Espresso Explosion in a bowl, please.”
“And for you, son” she asks, while scooping.
“What is Sand Dollar?”
“It is vanilla ice cream with peanuts, swirls of hot fudge and caramel.”
“Yup! I will have a small one of those. In a dish please.”
“Good choice.” She smiles and hands us the bowls and I hand her the money. We go and sit on the wraparound porch and I start to pull out my books.
“Can I ask you something?” asks Samson.
“Um sure... What’s up, Samson?”
“What happened in the hall earlier?”
I look away from him. “Nothing.”
“Liddy, come on. I know there was something.”
“Look. I barely know you. I came to get help for a math test. So let’s concentrate on that and worry about the heart-wrenching stories for another day.”
“Okay so let’s get started."
We work for an hour, Samson explaining how to graph trig functions and all this other pointless math stuff that isn’t really needed in life. He really is helpful, breaking it down into scenarios I would understand.
I check my watch and it says, 11:02. Class starts at 11:30.
“Hey we better get going, Samson. We don’t want to miss math class” I say.
We start to pack up our books when he blurts out “Sam.”
“Huh?” I respond.
“Sam. That’s what most people call me. I don’t mind Samson but it seems really formal.”
“Oh. Okay, Sam. Sorry.”
“Liddy is short for Elizabeth. It’s what my grandmother calls me and it just sort of stuck.”
“I like Liddy. It is original.”
I smile and we walk out the door and back to my powder blue jeep. I look up and notice that the skies are starting to get darker and darker, and the winds begin to pick up.
“Looks like we might be getting a thunderstorm” Sam tells me.
“Yeah. I love them. They always smell good afterwards.”
“Yeah I agree.” He smiles and gets in the driver’s seat and as the car starts to move, I am lulled into a sleep.
The sky is dark and stormy. People are running for cover and preparing for something big. I approach one man, with plaid pants on and ask what is going on.
“The Aisling Diabhal is coming. He is going to be here seven days sunset. Save yourself. Save your family.” He runs away into a crowd. A loud crack of thunder startles me.