“Ruby!” I turned up my iPod, “Ruby!” I looked away from my mom’s face; she shook my shoulder and pulled out my earphones. “Ruby!” she tried one last time,
“What?” I asked angrily,
“It’s time to go,”
“I don’t want to go to a frickin’ museum!”
“I’ve already paid for the trip, that’s $50 I’ll not see again!” she retorted,
“I don’t want to go see a load of dead Egyptians all wrapped in cloths which are thousands of years old and most probably…”
“You’re going Ruby!” my mom finally snapped, she took my arm and led me to the car. I made a face and put my earphones back in, I saw my mom roll her eyes but I ignored her. Once we had travelled three blocks I took out one earphone,
“If I die of boredom on this trip, you can arrange my cremation,”
“Don’t you want to be buried?”
“You can scatter my ashes into the sea,” I told her, she shuddered,
“I hate the thought of burning a dead body; they should be preserved and looked after,”
“I see why you’re so keen on this trip, perhaps after I die of boredom you could mummify me and put me in the museum?” I offered,
“No one has actually ever died of boredom Ruby,” she said sternly. We pulled up at school and mom smiled,
“Love you,” she blew a kiss,
“Hate you,” I smiled back, she rolled her eyes and waved as I got onto the yellow school bus which was going to take us to the destination. I took a seat near the back and let the bus fill up with history students, half of which I didn’t know.
“Is this seat taken?” said a deep voice, I reluctantly looked up to see whose face matched the voice, it was Jackson Knight, the head-jock, prom king and football captain.
“I guess not,” I said reluctantly, Jackson was one of the cool guys, someone who knew he was hot and had that air of arrogance.
“So…” he said after a moment, “mummies,”
“Seriously, you don’t have to talk to me,” I told him, “I’ve got my iPod and I know you don’t want to talk to me,”
“Who said that? Of course I want to talk to you, don’t go all anti-social on me,”
“Right,” I said, I couldn’t quite tell if he was being serious or not. He smiled slowly, that crooked grin which all the girls swooned over. The bus began to move off; we were on our way,
“We don’t talk much do we?” he said suddenly,
“I think there’s a good reason for that,” I muttered,
“I mean you’ve been in my history class all semester and we haven’t said a word to each other,”
“It’s a huge shame,” I said sarcastically, he raised his eyebrow and gave me a funny look,
“Was that sarcasm Miss Bevans?”
“No! Never,” I smiled slightly and looked down at my lap,
“Well I think it’s a shame, I would have liked to have gotten to know you better, sooner,”
“Find a time machine and travel back?” I offered,
“Oh yeah, I have one in my backyard…” he grinned,
“See, we’re both capable of sarcasm Mr Knight,” I retorted,
“That we are…” Jackson looked passed me out the window, “it’s a nice day,”
“Yes,” I said looking out, Riverside, CA, was a nice city close to Los Angeles and the Californian plains. Most people living here had grown up here, I didn’t know why, but it wasn’t a place you wanted to leave, despite the smoggy air, hot climate and seasonal droughts.
“You live in Alessandro Heights don’t you?”
“For someone I’ve never spoken to, you seem to know a whole lot about me,” I muttered uneasily,
“I live three blocks away from you,”
“Oh,” was all I could reply,
“I sometimes see you driving to school,” he smiled, “you always look very unhappy,”
“Mom’s always moaning at me for something or rather,”
“Don’t get me started!” Jackson grinned, “My mom never stops!” By now we were halfway out the city, heading to the Moreno Valley. Jackson leant back in his seat and got out his phone, he texted on it for a few minutes and then he threw himself back into conversation.
“Do you have any hobbies?” he asked,
“I play the piano,” I offered, it was a lame hobby but it was something I spent a lot of time doing, “do you?”
“I’m into martial arts,” he raised an eyebrow, “mainly karate and judo, and I play for the school’s teams,”
“Interesting,” I muttered – it really wasn’t.
“I’m a black belt, I’m hoping to go to nationals this year,” he grinned, the arrogance was beginning to sweep through, it didn’t impress me.
“I heard that people who practice karate are three times more likely to kill someone,”
“Where’d you hear that?” he asked,
“On…the news,” I internally cringed, why had I said that?
“Well our whole ethos is to self-defend not attack.” I didn’t reply as I looked out the window, we were now in the plains and huge stretches of sand, cacti and a few shrubs were the only thing around for miles. “We sure are in the middle of nowhere,” Jackson muttered looking out too; I rested my forehead against the window and watched the world pass by.