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I awoke to my still-dark room and my radio turned down low. No more than the first hint of sun was above the hills on the horizon that I could see through my window. I stumbled out of bed, checking my clock. It was the right time to wake up, so I gripped my towel and walked with it until it came gracefully from the hanger in my closet. Headed for the downstairs bathroom, I wondered if we would have hot water today. If not, I would just have to take a shower and enjoy it anyway, because having hot water in the morning was practically a delicacy. I finally got to the bathroom and started to undress. I was still half-dead to the world, so I went a little slow, and it was about 7 minutes later when I stepped into the running water.
I had the radio on full blast so I could hear it above the shower, so when I screamed I could be almost sure no one heard me. The water was just about cold enough to give me hypothermia on the spot. I knew immediately that this morning's shower would be quick.
I shivered as I tromped back up to my room and closed the door. Ummm... I thought, wondering if I should get my charcoal gray fox shirt, or my white shirt w/ a blue soccer design. I ended up choosing the fox shirt, and a pair of dark navy blue basketball shorts. Hurrying to get my hair brushed and the side part looking all right, I rushed to the kitchen as fast as I could, going down a flight of stairs, two hallways, and one very sharp corner. I managed to snag the last two pieces of toast, and added my own touch to them – cinnamon. Cinnamon toast was gooood, and it always would be. I had to stuff my face though, because I would be late for school if I didn't get going right now. Grabbing my bag on the way out, I called to my older brother who was somewhere in the house goodbye, and ran to my motorbike.
“I'm gonna make it to school. I'm gonna make it to school.” I murmured under my breath the entire ride to the high school. I locked my bike in it's usual spot and got to the front doors in record time, or it could have been if it was being recorded.
“Aw, hell.” I mumbled under my breath, as soon as I remembered that I had dreamed about what would happen today, and I was having premonitions a lot lately. That dream was so wrong, I prayed to Lord with all my might that it was just a dream, and nothing more.
“Hey, how's goes it?” My best friend, Chance, came out of nowhere and started walking with me. Chance and I have been inseparable since third grade when he moved here. On the usual scale, Chance was on the hot side, but I've never looked at him like that. He had long [for a boy] naturally blond hair that fell around his face. He was tall, even taller than me, and I was 5Ə”. He was also really muscular. He didn't play football, even the coach had tried at least three times to get him to try out. He had tan skin barely darker than mine, and when he smiled, his teeth showed, unless he was faking it. Even though he's got a lot of stuff going for him, not many people do look at him like that. We figured that was because he hangs out with me.
“I might have had another prem dream last night, but I don't know if it was or not. Nothing has happened significant enough to tell me, so I'll just have to keep an eye out for anything.” I said warily, looking in Chance's direction.
“You look really scared, Scar. Was it bad?”
“Uh, yeah. It was bad. I have a very vivid imagination.” I glanced at my bag. Half of the notebooks in there were dedicated to the different kinds of drawing I do, and half of those had something to do with blood, gore, guts, and/or death. Chance swears that I'm gonna sell one of those drawings in college to a twisted professor, and word is gonna leak out that I'm the best artist in the world, and before I can say, “Oh, for all that's bloody” people will line up at my dorm to buy a drawing and have it signed, even though it'll probably be about someone being tortured or laying in the forest with their guts spewing out of their chest and making it's own stream into a creek nearby, the blood staining the once-before crystal clear water [I've actually drawn that one]. I swear Chance is on the brink of insanity.
“Watch it, freaks.” A jock said loudly when I bumped into him.
“Go screw a sock.” I retorted. The guy, also known as the linebacker on the football team, Austin Rivers, spun around, grabbed the hood of my sweatshirt, and forced me back to him.
“You wanna say that again to my face?” He said a little too loudly, because an audience quickly forms around us. I can't see Chance anywhere, but I have to get to him, because so far, this is what had happened, word for word in my dream.
I didn't just say it again, I spat on his jersey, and added, “In case you were too deaf to hear me, I said 'go screw a sock.' Did you hear me that time?” I think I must have gone a little too far, because Austin brought back his fist, while still holding me there by hood with his other hand, and he made his fist connect with my cheek. I had no idea he was such a good hitter. I staggered back, trying to melt into the crowd and be gone forever, but I stumbled right into another athlete, who was the star receiver, TJ Daniels. He didn't allow me to melt at all, but just pushed me back toward Austin. You've got to stand up for yourself. Words aren't going to get the jocks off your back. Fists and feet will. I listened to myself, and just as I had regained my balance in front of Austin, I took a step back and readied myself, now willing and able to plant a good, firm kick to his gut. I was so in the moment, I forgot that this is how I managed to get myself seriously hurt in the dream. Just as Austin was charging to try and clobber me, I brought my foot back, and kicked hard to where I knew his stomach was going to be. I never took my eyes off my target. I must have done a bloody fine job too, because now it was Austin's turn to lose balance, and fall into the crowd. They didn't thrust him back at me though, they held and steadied him, giving him encouragement that he could still knock me cold.
What happened next was very bad. Very. Very. Bad.
I didn't exactly register that both of my arms were being held against my back until Austin came at me again, and I found it extremely hard to move. I struggled as best I could, but whoever had me in this hold was strong, 'cause they were stronger than me. And that's saying a lot. So, I did the next best thing for myself; I dodged the punch. It ended up landing square on the guy's nose. I heard a crunch. My arms were free. The jock was going down. I was free to run and get away. I tried to simply sprint forward and spin around Austin, but... it's hard to pull a football move on someone who plays football when you don't... and he caught me, because I tripped. I would have rather fall on my face than be caught my Austin Rivers. Especially when he was trying to hurt me. He twirled me around to face him, gripping my shoulders with what seemed like iron, and just stood there for about two seconds, just looking into my eyes, and me looking into his. Then the two seconds got over, and another one of his buddies tripped me. Being the klutz I am, I grabbed anything to keep me up. Unfortunately, the thing wasn't expecting that, so I just brought Austin down on top of me, which knocked the wind out of me. I lay there for about ten seconds, wheezing and barely breathing, and when I had just caught my breath, three football guys lifted me up and pushed me outside, with a lot of protest from me. Even when I was a brick wall, one didn't stand up against three.
The sky outside was just barely not-pink-and-orange from the sunrise. That was when I remembered what had happened in my dream last night all in a flash at once – 5 seconds from now, Austin is going to slam me against the back of the Home Team Baseball dugout, and hit my ribs, hard. Then I'm going to double over, cough up a little blood, and his two buddies are going to hold me up by my arms, so Austin can hit me again in my face, all the while murmuring about how the tomboy isn't so tough after all. By then, I'll be wheezing, and half blind because of a black eye. But Chance will run out of the building at that moment when Austin is about to pound me into the wood and concrete several times, and make the statement to not mess with him final. Chance will start screaming his face off, and throwing rocks at TJ and Cody, the other football jock/bodybuilder. They'll all turn toward Chance and see that he's holding a sign that says, “Don't screw a sock! It deserves better!!” Then Austin's face will turn red as a radish, and he'll charge at Chance. But, Like a bull, once Austin starts in one direction, he has a hard time turning. So, Chance easily jumps to one side and lets Austin run into the concrete wall of the school. Running to me, Chance takes another rock and knocks TJ out from the temple. Cody kind of backs off nice and slow. Good boy. You don't want to be knocked unconscious, I thought. Chance picked me up like someone sleeping, and I couldn't do much but let him.
“Chance, I can walk, you know.” I said quietly. I didn't tell him that even though I could walk, it would be immensely hard to move my legs and breathe.
“Of course you can, because you're good at ignoring pain. But when you hurt, that means your body isn't working right. So even though you can do something, it would be bad for your body.” Chance replied, speaking close to my ear. “I'm taking you to the school nurse. There, she can call the hospital and we'll get you fixed up.”
“You're coming with, right?” was all I could manage to squeak out.
“Definitely. I'm not going anywhere.” Chance whispered in my ear again before I coughed up a little more blood on the grass and blacked out.