It was midweek, Wednesday break time, and I was out of class first which gave me the task of getting the bench before the sixth formers could get to it. Even if I wasn’t first out it was still my job to get the bench.
“Squash.” Bob smiled at me and took a seat to my right; she always had to be sitting on the right. Just slightly she rested her head on my shoulder and closed her eyes before everyone else descended upon us.
Janet plonked down on the floor in front of us, closer than normal because it had been raining all morning. Most of the floor was wet but where our bench sat there was a little cover so there was also a slim part of the floor that was still suitable to sit on. Janet would always sit on the floor; she would never miss a chance to flash us although she didn’t know that she did it every time she sat down until we laughed about it and she told us that she hated us and then tried to pull up one of our skirts, usually Bob’s.
Sasha sat next to Janet but left when she realised that she had to go buy her food from the cafeteria, she did it every day and then got in a strop with us for not reminding her to go straight to the hall to buy lunch. Apparently this two minute disruption meant that she couldn’t get any nice food although we were all doubtful.
Cathy sat on my other side, talking loudly like we had already been half way through a conversation and Leanne sat on the floor quietly as though no one had noticed her.
We were only missing one person but I wasn’t going to be the one to ask Bob where he was.
“Sup Wookie.” Bob didn’t even look up but of course she knew that Kenny was half way across the tarmac from where we were already sitting and of course he smiled and speed up like he had actually been able to hear her talking to him.
“Brought you a cookie.” It wasn’t a subtle entrance from Kenny; he stumbled over Janet’s bag and ended up sitting on Bobs lap.
She kicked her legs weakly and took her head of my shoulder to hit it on Kenny’s back. “Get of you great lump!” There wasn’t a hint of love or friendship in her voice but we all knew she insulted us out of love. She was only nice to the people she hated already. The excuse she gave was that we already liked her so she didn’t need to put any effort into making us like her, it was good logic and she was right to say it. We all still loved her through the insults.
Kenny gave a little laugh and stood up, bringing Bob with him now that she had wrapped her arms around his shoulders and her legs around his waist.
“If you don’t get off I’ll sit back down on you.” Kenny smiled it, he was always smiling.
There were other conversations going on, Janet was talking with Em and Jake who had joined us shortly after Kenny had turned up. Cathy was talking loudly at Dom and Ben and Jane. I could have listened to anything else but the two of them had caught my attention.
“This is your punishment. Leave me alone in English and you suffer the consequences.” Bobs voice was quiet, her face was buried at the back of Kenny’s neck and she spoke softly but I was so used to her voice I could have heard it over a roaring crowd.
“I got you a cookie though.”
There was a second of stillness before Bob sat back down next to me and leant her head back and Kenny sat on the floor, resting his head on Bobs leg.
“Hearts today ... good choice Janet, not as see through as yesterday though.” Bob smiled at the ceiling, I doubted that she had even seen Janet flash us all but she didn’t miss a thing.
“Bob, were you looking?” Janet sounded playful but moved so that there was no way anyone would be seeing her underwear.
“No, Kenny was looking and I just got the feedback from his brain.” The way she said it as though it was undeniably true made me think that maybe she was right; it would make sense seeing as though the two of them were closer than any other two people in the world.
“I’ll get you back...” Janet herself sounded doubtful about it and the rest of us knew that she would never get Bob back. No one got Bob back.
We all just humoured Janet but Em and Jake decided that they would try to plan this ‘getting Bob back’ plan.
“Maybe! We could always get her to break the law in some way...” Jake spoke enthusiastically as though it was his life mission to get back at Bob, maybe it was. She had been his first girlfriend and the first girl he supposedly loved, but after a week she broke up with him with little explanation. As far as the rest of us knew they were on good terms, they still acted like good friends and there was no bitterness between them but who really knew.
“Already have. It’s illegal to fly a pirate flag.”
Em nodded as though he knew what Bob was talking about and Jake went on with his explanation.
“Well, okay, I’ll have to call the police then and they will arrest you and when you go to prison we’ll be there waiting to take pictures of you in those orange jump suit things and that will be your pay back!” It didn’t seem as though he took a single breath in his long and ridiculous story.
Of course Jake was incredibly silly about things like this, overall he was quite clever but when it came to things that no one gave a damn about then he would dive into it with as many stupid suggestions as he could.
“Bob, don’t you already have an orange jump suit?” I turned to look at her, knowing that she owned a lot of bright clothes; it stood to reason that she would own a bright orange jump suit.
“Not yet, but I would quite like one of those ones they wear in American prisons. I do have orange skinnies and a few orange tops.” She shrugged, probably thinking of something completely off topic.
“Yeah, but ... That’s not the point. I mean, you’d go to prison, that would be pay back.” Jake started to panic, he wasn’t very good with comebacks, usually he would say something along the lines of ‘your mum’ or ‘your face’ but it never sounded good when he said it.
“I think I’d like coffee if it didn’t taste so strong...” Janet had blanked out, almost everyone had, but only Janet would start talking her thoughts out loud to get us off any topic she didn’t like.
“But bananas don’t have a really strong taste and you don’t like them...” Ben pointed out, trying to be clever.
“It’s the texture of them” both Janet and Bob told us at the same time.
We all thought they were very strange because they liked tea but not coffee and neither of them liked bananas but liked to make jokes about them. Half the time it seemed like they shared a brain.
“Can you put this in the bin Bob?” Cathy leaned over me to pass Bob an empty yogurt pot stuffed with a crisp packet.
Cathy just looked at Bob, waiting for her to take the rubbish from her, or say something else, or do anything.
“I could but I didn’t say that I would.” Although sitting on the right meant that Bob was closest to the bin she wouldn’t put anything in the rubbish, I wasn’t quite sure why she wouldn’t but I knew that she wouldn’t. There was no point asking her to, I never did. “What lesson do I have next?” Bob said as the bell rang and everyone started to get up.
“Geography.” Janet bounced, it was her favourite subject.
“Ah yes. Geo-graphy. What are we learning in Geo-graphy?” Bob stood up slowly, prolonging the time before she had to go to the lesson.
“Ask Dom... or Ben... or Cathy. They might know.” Janet took Bobs hand and they started to walk towards to music block to go to their lesson.
Bob held her arm out and I linked mine with her. While Bob, Janet, Ben, Dom and Cathy had Geography together I had music with no one. I didn’t mind much, they always walked with me the long way to their lesson so I wouldn’t have to go alone to music and they would always find an excuse to leave their lesson slightly early so they would be waiting for me when I got out of music so it wasn’t all bad.
“See you later. I think it’s going to rain through lunch so we might have to find somewhere inside to sit unless the others get the bench first.” Dom smiled when I let go of Bobs arm and headed into the music block.
Most of my class where already in M2 puttering around getting out instruments so when I slipped in and grabbed my mandarin I wasn’t noticed too much.
We had been making our own compositions for a while now and soon we would have to perform them to get a grade. Most other people were working in groups, with someone singing and someone else playing an instrument, usually someone playing the piano, because this is a posh school and if you play anything that isn’t a piano that means you’re not worthy or something, so naturally play the mandarin.