The morning sun made the glass of milk in front of Rusty shimmer. It was his first day at Don Bosco. He quickly threw in a few books in his backpack and checked the time; he took the bicycle with him. He always believed in staying fit and being tough, he always refused his dad's offers of dropping him to school. Rusty rode for few minutes before he saw an unfortunate little kid fall down from his bicycle a short distance away. Rusty rushed to help the kid.
“Oww…” the kid winced, Rusty helped him up, and it seemed that he wasn’t hurt much. Rusty stole a glance at his watch, he was getting late. “Oh! Great!” Rusty cursed. He ran back shouting words of advice to the unknown kid who didn’t seem hear anything in pain. Rusty grabbed his bicycle and was in school a few moments later. He breathed heavily and wiped the sweat off his forehead, clutching his chest in pain. “Wow,” thought Rusty “what a start!”
Don Bosco was a few miles away from Fairfield Towers. Rusty enjoyed the sight of golden beaches and blue Arabian Sea on the way. In fact, Don Bosco itself was situated beside a beach. It was called the “Marina Beach”. Rusty took the liberty of strutting around it; he had to cover his eyes from the glare of the sun reflecting in the brilliant blue sea. He stopped short when he saw a group of students standing beneath a palm tree. They all had backpacks, i-Pods hanging from their ears, they looked Rusty’s age and their eyes flashed teenage attitude.
One of the boys came over to Rusty; he introduced himself as Akash. He was a short, plump boy with soft, kind eyes. He was extremely friendly too. Soon, Rusty was in deep conversation with him. They were soon joined by Kevin, A tall, thin guy who was wearing huge baggy pants and a T-shirt with lots of hip-hop tags.
Once Rusty was inside the classroom he thought how lucky he was to make friends so quickly. His first day at his previous school, the first thing Rusty had done was to puke on poor Mrs. Gurung even before he could say a word of introduction. Since then he was seen in the eyes of delicacy there, which irritated him beyond anything else.
Rusty’s place was at the front corner of the class near the door. He had a girl for company beside him. “Hi,” she said “I am Michelle.” “Hi, I am Rusty.” Michelle was diminutive in size, she had small eyes, a tiny nose and when she flashed a smile did Rusty get to know that she had abnormally large teeth. She was very excited to see a new face and chattered on without giving Rusty a chance to reply. For some uncertain reasons, this girl was giving Rusty headache.
After the first lecture ended Rusty found himself an empty class to sit down and think alone. He was one of the few people around him who enjoyed loneliness, sometimes. But to his great annoyance, he was soon joined by a bunch of hooligans from his class. “Hey dude,” they snickered in a strange lopsided way “you have got a love letter!” Rusty didn’t believe them of course, he snatched the piece of paper in their hands. There was some very untidy scribbling on it and at the end was written “With love, Michelle.” The hooligans then demanded Rusty to write a reply, he agreed to play with the joke. He took a piece of paper and scribbled “I can’t sleep at night cursing you…stop letting in mosquitoes in my house. Rusty”
At lunchtime Rusty was alone in the classroom when Michelle walked in with the hooligans close at her heels. She looked at Rusty with twinkling eyes and asked “So…will you be my boyfriend?” Rusty choked on the water he was drinking but soon regained his balance. He was stunned by the suddenness of the question. He managed to reply “No, I don’t like you and it is too early to ask!” Michelle got up in a huff, she took the chit Rusty had written, tore it apart and threw it in his face. Rusty was frozen in shock, unable to raect. From the corner of the door, Rusty heard the snickering of the hooligans. Michelle gave him one last menacing glance before taking her leave.
“But why?” asked Akash after Rusty refused to accompanying him to the public library or to either join him in a volleyball game. Rusty was too busy thinking about the possibilities of Michelle liking mosquitoes…after all that happened today, Rusty was feeling like a wounded lion whose pride was punctured like a balloon poked with a pin.
“Oh c’mon,” Akash said “I know what happened today…but why don’t you forget it.” “I don’t give a damn about Michelle but she strained my relation with the entire class, now I'll have to live like this for the next two years. You and Kevin are the only ones talking to me.” said Rusty."We can do something to make up to them." suggested Akash "Oh, I don't think so!" Rusty said, thundering upon Akash, vehemously rejecting his suggestion. He said goodbye to Akash and he saw Michelle get into her car. He didn’t move before it was out of his sight. "Great!", cursed Rusty, for he had made good friends and bad enemies on his first day in Don Bosco. "I guess good friends come at the price of worse enemies!" he thought. He longed to see Sheena again.