Dale - Keep Moving

The gentle, familiar of the bus rumbling soothed me. It distracted me from the vivid dream that I'd had. The apocalyptic sight had chilled me to the bone, and even now I felt iciness creeping up my body like a rapidly growing vine. But the bus distracted me, so I paid more attention the the sound of the revving engine rather than pondering apocalyptic predictions and forcing myself into a pretense of nonchalance.

The bus slowed to a stop in front of my school, and I pulled my bag over my shoulders and standing up from my bus seat. I walked down the bus seat aisle, keeping my eyes away from anyone. Whenever they saw my nearly-golden eyes, they became instantly captivated, and they would never leave me alone.

So I kept my strange gaze down.

I walked behind the group of high school kids as we filed off the vehicle, and once we did, I headed for the front doors. I got inside, and then I turned left to go up the stairs. I took them two at a time, then I went down the hallway and stopped at my locker. When I put in the combo, I grabbed my English Literacy stuff and shut my locker just as the bell rang, signifying first period. I sauntered over to my class, which was down the hall.

When I got into the class, I sat down in my usual spot. I didn't like being first, because that made people look at me when they got into the room, meaning: instant annoyance. I didn't like being last, either because of the same reason. So I always got there after a few people, but before others. No one ever notices the eleventh person, right?

So I sat down, waiting for the rest of the students to get into the classroom. Once they did, the teacher started her lecture. As always, I'd already heard everything that she was saying. That's how it always had been. I'd move from foster home to foster home, and every time I got to school, I knew what the teachers were saying already because I was, "too smart for my own good," as my last foster parents had placed it. So I eventually was enrolled in all of the AP classes.

So I dozed off, waiting for the lesson to end. "... Dale?" I faintly heard the teacher say.

"Pardon me?" I asked.

"Could you please recite Shakespeare's Sonnet 18? You were supposed to learn it for homework." I already knew it, and so I decided to be smart and recite it without using my book.

"Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate. Rought winds do shake the darling buds of May, and summer's lease hath all too a short a date. Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines, and often is his gold complexion dimmed, and every fair from fair sometime declines, by chance or nature's changing course untrimmed. But thy eternal summer shall not fade, nor lose possession of that fair thou ow'st; nor shall death brag thou wand'rest in his shade when in eternal lines to time thou grow'st. So long as men can breathe or eyes can see, so long lives this, and this gives life to thee," I finished, slowing down gently.

I could see the teacher was about to cry, and so were many of the students that were in the classroom. I looked around, and the teacher wiped her eyes. "Now..." she said. "Describe what you think this poem is about."

"I think that..." I started, not knowing what to say. Suddenly, the words came out in a blur of emotion. "Shakespeare is trying to compare his love for a women to a summer day, like she is brighter than even the sun.  He says that her beauty is everlasting, even in death, and that her beauty is greater still--more lovely-- than nature. He describes that the sun's golden complexion seems to dim in her presence, as if it is being outshone, almost," I said. "At least, that's what I got out of it. Is that alright?"

"Wow," said my teacher. "Um... Dale? I think you should be in Advanced Placement class. Would you like to try?"

"Sure," I said, trying to sound excited. It would be the same thing in AP classes; they'd say that I was the smartest of all of them. This is how it always was, and how it always would be until I decided that I'd found the right foster home. I would never truly settle in, just in case I had to run again.

Staying in one spot hurt me. Hovering only made me think more, of how my life could have been if my parents hadn't died. Replacements could never do. It only hurt me more to make attachments to people, so I stayed out of bonding. If I just kept moving, the pain couldn't keep up with me. It couldn't catch me. Basically I had to paddle, keeping my head above the water. That meant that even love was out of the question.

Only because love is irrevokable and unconditional; once you love someone, there's no stopping. I couldn't afford that, because that powerful bond would anchor me in place, only causing me more and more pain. Love isn't so pure for me.

Besides, I'd probably run away again in a few weeks.

The End

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