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Campus > Classroom #3

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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

Desks... and a whiteboard... and a projector?

message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

Well. Jonathan had known that the first day back wouldn't go well. He had expected it to go horribly, in fact, but nothing could have prepared him for — all of it. The staring and whispering, Mr. McAllistar having to shout before it all died down. His best friend having to sit in the front corner because it was the most wheelchair accessible desk in the room.

He wanted to scream.

He wasn't going to scream, though, because that would probably be a bad reflection of the Student Leadership Team, and also because he was pretty sure David wouldn't appreciate his best friend hollering for no apparent reason.

"Hey," he said, sitting down on the top of the desk next to David's, after the room had cleared of gossiping classmates and Mr. McAllistar had headed to the printing room. "How're you holding up?"

It was hard. Hard to even look him in the eyes now. Because the fact of the matter was that their peers could blame David all they wanted for the accident, they could stare and gossip and point fingers, but Jon had been the one to give him the keys. Because it had been late, and he had been sweaty and frustrated, because it wasn't exactly shits and giggles to see countless pretty girls flirting with your best friend who you lowkey were in love with. And so no, he hadn't been thinking. And so he'd given him the keys, when he was the one who was supposed to drive them home, and now — all anyone could seem to do was blame David.

message 3: by anya forger ⭐ (jim), my cards are on the table (new)

anya forger ⭐ (jim) (sungkew) | 108 comments Mod
How're you holding up?

There was a really simple answer to that question: not well.

In fact, you could mark down today as one of the absolute worst in David's entire life. After waking up this morning to once again realize that, no, all of this in fact wasn't a nightmare, David had had to choose between two options: one, stay home and not dare to show his face anywhere even close to Richard M. Nixon High, or, two, pick up every piece of bravery that he had ever owned and try to make it through this first day back.

He regretted choosing the second one.

David was used to hearing people talk about him; he was used to being stared at. Today had been something different. Everywhere he went, whispers followed. Every time he caught someone staring at him, he couldn't miss the look in their eyes: half of them said I pity you so much and the other half said I can't believe people feel bad for you. He didn't know which was worse.

By the time this class had rolled around, David was already sick of hearing about himself. Head down and eyes focused on his paper, he'd spent the entire period absentmindedly scribbling away, paying no attention to anything Mr. McAllister was saying. He was sure the teacher had noticed (it looked like he'd debating asking David a question a few times, only to decide against it), but David didn't care. Being a model student was the last thing he was thinking about.

When class ended and the room finally cleared, he packed up his stuff and prepared to go back to trying not to run over people's feet with his chair (it was harder than it looked). Before he had the chance to, though, Jon sat down next to him. For the first time that day, a real, true smile lit up David's face.

"Fine," he replied. Was it an honest answer? Not really. But this was Jon; this was his best friend. If there was anyone he wanted to talk to and not feel like a complete wreck, it was Jon. "I guess."

message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

There was really only one person in Jon's life who he actually loved, who he wanted to see away from harm and hurt at all costs, and that person was David. And if he could have, he would trade places with him in a heartbeat. But this was the real world, and there was none of that. No do-overs. Just cruel classmates, and a wheelchair, and now.

Seeing David smile made him feel a little better. But it didn't ease his guilt.

"Fine, huh." Maybe on another day he would have protested, would have weaseled some deeper answer out of David. But right now? That was probably the last thing he needed. More reminders of what was wrong.

There was one redeeming part of Jon's family, luckily, and that was that his mother was a genius in the kitchen. Reaching into his backpack, he pulled out a tupperware.

"Here," he said, "my mom made brownies." Because chocolate helped make things better, right? He didn't need to mention to David that his parents lowkey hated him now, that they wanted him to never set foot in the same room as Jon again, but, well. That was because his parents could be poster children for Prohibition. And the fact that he'd told his mom that they'd be for the SLT? Well. No one had to know.

For now, at least, the tension in Jon's shoulders could ease a little as it was just them.

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