After my sister dropped me off and headed to her school, the rival school across town, I wandered into my school’s main entranceway and headed down the first hall on the left to where my locker was.
So far, so good. People left and right were greeting me with a welcome back until I ended at my top locker, 369. I entered the combo in my purple lock and the almost silent click was a reassurance to me.
Those words, my name, crashed down on my shoulders like the heaviest load in the weight training room. Those words were the ones that caused fear to enter me along with panic. I couldn’t turn around. I couldn’t will myself to talk to him.
“What? We aren’t talking?” His hands came down on my shoulders and I cringed as he turned me around to face him.
“Hi.” I whispered, ripping free of his grasp before I’d get the pleasure of his hands on me.
“Hey.” He smiled when I finally looked up to meet his gaze of the prettiest green eyes. He held his arms out for a hug and I shook my head, stepping away from him into the smaller space in front of my locker. “Ah, come on. I know you’ve missed me.”
I have …
“Robyn?” he asked as I stared off into space. “Are you okay … oh … oh yeah. That. I’m sorry about what happened. I already said that before but I’m sorry. Robyn?”
He waved his hand in front of my face, “What did you say?”
And suddenly, Raine was towering higher over me, pushing me up against my locker, his hands gently locked on my wrists. “I said,” he cooed in my ear, “I’m sorry.” He was pressing his body, mainly his “man stuff” to me. “Did you not hear me? Even though, I guess this way of talking is … better.”
“Ah, come on man. First day back. Get off her.” Someone said from behind us. Raine tensed and turned around to glare at Caleb Blaine.
“Oh my bad. I forgot. It’s your turn, isn’t it?” Raine hissed back. Caleb looked as if he wanted to ignore the jab about liking me but at the same moment he wanted to yell about it.
“Guys, guys.” I interrupted, “Its not big deal. Hi Caleb.” He smiled momentarily at me but then shifted back to Raine, looking him up and down.
“Everything all right here, Robyn?” Caleb asked me and I nodded quickly.
“Hey, hey. No need to get your protector to say it. I’ll move along.” Raine replied. I didn’t answer, just stared as he walked away. That was definitely not what I was expecting.
“Are you alright?”
I nodded again and grumbled, “Please calm down. It was nothing.”
“He was on top of you and you want me to believe that was nothing. He—”
I cut him off, “It was nothing.”
Caleb stepped closer to me and said in a quieter tone, “I know what he did to you last year, Robyn. It was going all around but Mila was the one who told me most of the story.”
“He did nothing to me last year.” I lied badly while smacking my forehead. Mila Handler! Of course she would blab to Caleb about what had gone down the last couple of weeks of middle school, summertime … and most of the beginning of high school. D*mn her. No surprises there.