I placed my blade down on the bathmat and resettled myself in the bath as I looked up from my bleeding arm and took a deep breath. I should’ve been in class, but recess was an all-out attack against me and I couldn’t take it. I rinsed my arm quickly by dunking into the scorching bath water and sighed as I watched the skin slowly rise and turn a pale pink. Mum wasn’t due back from work till late, and dad was out on a business trip. I sunk deeper into the bath as my phone began ringing from the countertop, pleading me to answer it. But I ignored it and let it ring out. A moment later the same tone filled my ears and I dunked my head again. The third time it rang I picked it up, my fingers slipping on the screen. It was Luke. “Hey bitch” I sighed as I answered and placed it on speaker phone.
“Hey Mike! How are ya’?” Luke’s voice boomed though the speakers.
“Fine mate, you?”
“Good thanks. Where are you, missing you here in class?”
“I ditched.” Luke sighed and I heard him inhale, about to leap into a lecture about how my education was important and all that shit.
“Michael, if I don’t see you next period, I’m gonna be so mad at you. You know how important school is. This is what defines what you’ll become. Without an education what are you gonna be? What are you actually gonna do with your life?” and I hung up.
The buzz came through my phone and I groaned. “Is there a problem Lucas” Miss Kelting asked. I looked up at the red head.
“No” I muttered, biting my lip. Miss Kelting stared at me with her emerald eyes and smiled weakly. When I had had no one else to turn to, I had turned to her, and she had welcomed me with open arms. I looked up as the bell rang through the classroom, but stayed as the other students practically stampeded out of the room. Miss Kelting pulled up a chair beside my table.
“Come on, Luke, you can tell me?”
“It’s Michael” I whispered.
“I already thought of that Luke… do you feel sick?” I smiled weakly at her. “Sick pass it is then.”
“Thank you” I whispered. Miss Kelting kissed me lightly on the forehead, in a non-sexual way, obviously.
“Have you told him how you feel yet?” I dropped my head. “Come Luke, you can’t keep it bottled up, it’s not good for you.” I shrugged. Miss Kelting patted my shoulder.
“What if he isn’t… well, you know? Gay? Like me” I whispered.
“Well, you won’t know until you ask him.” I nodded and Miss Kelting pulled me into a hug.
“You’re like the sister I never had” I giggled as she messed up my hair.
“My pleasure.” Miss Kelting hurried me out the door after writing me a pass, and the moment the door closed I started straight down the hall.