Chapter One (Oscar)

November 27, 2010
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“I’ve been watching, I’ve been waiting, in the shadows, all my time”  Lauri Ylönen from The Rasmus sings out from my phone. I sit bolt upright in bed all of a sudden and look at the clock. It’s 11am and my phone is ringing.

“ S**t!, “ I mutter under my breath. I was supposed to meet Alexis for brunch at half ten. Suddenly my phone stops ringing. Dreading to see, I pick it up and look at the screen.
Five missed calls from Alexis flashes on the screen. “Oh, S**t!”, I say again but louder, “I’m screwed!”.
I press Ok and then see, flashing on the screen, Ten new text messages. I know these aren’t from Alexis, because if I’m late for something or if she wants me to call over, she always calls. Never texts. She always says that boys are rubbish at texting, which we are so not, we just have better things to do.

I look at my texts. Mostly those chain letter ones, that say: if u dnt snd dis on u wil dy in da next week! Jus rd dis bout Mary Buckly hu didnt and da day ftr se ws in a trbl cr crsh nd she dyd so dd bth hr prnts nd 8 mnth old sister.

I can’t even believe people in my year still p*ss themselves over those things. And they really believe them too. The latest thing I heard off my friend Nate is that if you fart, burp and sneeze at the same time you’ll die. And I was like, “Yeah, that’s definitely true. Where’d you hear that?”, And then he said, “My new penpal’s science teacher said it so it has to be true.”. D*** right it’s true...

Nate is always getting new penpals. It’s this thing he has. I think that all his penpals he thinks are girls must be old psycho men in their forties looking for a relationship with a teenage boy. And I have a feeling that they are all very dumb.

I ring Alexis back, biting my lip as I wait for her to answer. “Yes?!” she snaps, I can tell that she’s only really pretending to be angry because, well, she’s never angry with me. “I’m so sorry,” I start, “ I had a really late night last night and my alarm clock never went off... Forgive me?” I plead. “It’s okay, I suppose. D’you want to come round to mine for lunch instead? Eric is making leek and potato soup.” She says. “Sure”, I reply “ At least that gets me away from Emma and her fellow drag queens for a bit”. “Alright,” she says, “ See you then!”. “Love you, bye!” I say, “And I really am sorry about today. See you soon!”. I hang up.

I always call my little b**** of a sister a drag queen. She wears too much make-up at the week-end and she’s a proper b****. She’s one of the populars at school and her best friend Adriana is even worse than her. Her friend Adriana is twelve next week and she’s already had four boyfriends. Her brother is in my year and he is completely different. He’s actually one of the soundest people I know. I’ve no clue how he sticks her!
Eric is Alexis’ little brother. Alexis, him and Tara, their nine year old sister, are practically orphaned. They aren’t really, they do have a Mum and a Dad, but it’s not as if they count. I mean her Dad lives in London City, and her Mum is a alcoholic and drug addict and rarely home. And when she’s home, I mean it’s not even like she’s there. All she does is lie in bed. But my Mum is like a second Mum to Alexis and Eric. She’s known them both since they were small because she went to high school with their father and Alexis has been my sister Aimee’s best friend since she was six years old. Alexis and Eric have another sister, Amelia,who’s nineteen. I’ve never met her but heard lots about her. She lives with their Dad. Alexis and Eric are like parents to Tara, and I got to say they did a pretty good job on raising her.
I get my iPod, grab a granola bar and set out walking to Al’s house. It’s not far, maybe ten minutes away. I don’t really like going out in public. It just means more stereotyping, labelling and nasty remarks and comments. It’s not nice getting strangers, people who don’t even know you shouting out things like ‘M*sher!’ and ‘F***it!’ just because you have piercings, and longer hair than you should and you wear more black than the average person. It’s not a very fair world.

I close the gate and shut my eyes tight as I wait for the rude remark from the guy who lives across the road, called Aaron. “Gay emo f**it!” he shouts at me as I set off. It doesn’t even hurt anymore. I’m well over his crappy remarks. And I have a thousand comebacks in my head but there’s no point using them.
After around ten minutes I arrive at Al’s. I have a key for her house just in case of an emergency or whatever so I let myself into the house. As I walk in I’m overwhelmed with the appetizing smell of leek an potato soup. “Smells great!,” I say as I walk in.

We sit down at the kitchen table and tuck in. Eric is an awesome cook and anything he makes is delicious.

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