This day was steadily getting worse for me. I had concluded that the rest of the day would, and must, get better. I was wrong.
Clare and I didn't have lunch until next period. And we both had no chance of getting into the cafeteria early enough to see Pris; because Clare's got an instrument to pack up when the bell rings, and I've got to change out of this leotard jumpsuit.
That's right, this is Dance class. Deal with it. Sitting on the floor, watching a performance from the side, one arm raised high in hopes of getting the teacher's attention. Frederic Douglas, student dancer. They persuaded me, for the sake of the lifts.
Look to the left! Look left! I pushed the instructive meme into the teacher's mind.
Unfortunately, she was across the room. And at least once I've caused a member of the trio performing to turn their head instead. I wasn't meaning to play human puppeteer, though; I had to go!
And this wasn't just about sneaking into the cafeteria to warn Pris, which I might just be desperate enough to do in this leotard, I was really close to pissing myself here.
She sees my hand and walks over, keeping her back to me as she watches the graceful performance in the centre of the room. Her heels stab the floor in front of my folded feet. She's the only one in the room who isn't barefoot.
"What is it, Rick?" she whispered at me with a harsh rasp.
"Bathroom," I answered, "please."
"Hmmm..." she's looking at the dancers, "Very well. Make it quick."
Seconds later, there I was; peaking out of the doorway, in an outfit almost as revealing as what Priscilla's wearing. Oh, geez, I realized, she's sending him bad signals. We haven't discussed this!
I made a run for it. The hall was practically empty, just one teacher. And I don't care if a teacher sees me in this.
"Have you seen your sister, Douglas?"
It was Clarice's music teacher, he was addressing me by my last name.
"I wish, sir."
"No, sir. Haven't seen either of them."
Inside my head, I was laughing. Eventually, I reached the bathroom. Outside, against the wall, there were two open binders and a grade eleven biology textbook open to a very nearly pornographic page.
I opened the door, and found that the lights were left off. There were no windows. It smelled of cleaning supplies. And the light from the door, and the blinking of the security camera, were all that lit the room. Every graffiti-covered surface was shiny.
I could hear what sounded like a tap dripping. I tuned out the noise. Then I tuned out my other nerves, my touch; sensory deprivation. Focusing on my sight, I can now see in the darkness.
I was astonished to see someone beside me, against the bathroom wall. Then, I made out a second person on their knees in front of the first.
Alright, it happens. Students are teenagers. They've got hormones. This isn't the first time I've walked into the bathroom to see a couple going at it in some way or another. And they always seem to think there's less chance of being reported if it's done in the men's room. From Clarice and Priscilla, I have inherited no memories of such encounters.
Ignoring them, I made my way over to the urinal and unzipped. I realized they're probably wondering why I didn't turn the lights on. And as urine streams onto ceramic, I reckoned they're probably wondering who in the right mind would have confident aim in this darkness.
As I washed my hands, he laughed so loud that I hear it even though I'm trying to shut out every sound. It was as if the laughter penetrated my thoughts and awareness, the same way I had broken the dance teacher's focus. The same way I had inadvertedly made that dancer into my own living and breathing marionette.
As I walked out, he flicked on the lightswitch. Long, thin fingers; both hands digging into voluminous hair and pushing her head against his crotch. It's the last person I would have expected to see with a girl pleasuring him.
Kipp stared me down and sized me up, right through his orgasm, and I was subjected to his thoughts and his pleasure, She's got a mouth like yours, Ricky.
My first instinct was to leap into the air and deliver a fatal kick to Kipp's head. But the lights are on now, and so the cameras are watching. The tapes are only pulled if there's a reason; a report or something left behind. And a bleeding corpse or injured student aren't what I want in my wake.
I ran out of the bathroom, breathing heavily. Fighting the urge not to yell, not to scream. Then, I tripped on the textbook in the hallway, and tore my leotard at the knees. And somehow, though there was a solid brick wall between us, I could hear her gagging, gasping for air. All I saw was darkness.
Help me! Help me, Ricky!
Trying to play damn tricks on me, Kipp? I blinked, and it was gone. I got up, tried to think nothing of it, and ran back to class.
Just another chauvinist pig, I assured myself, as I felt pity well up in my guts. That poor girl, whoever she is.