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Kicking Puppies [A Short Story]

As she sat with these complete strangers on the bus, she pondered why in the world these upperclassmen at her new high school would take the time to talk to a new freshman girl. She didn’t see what they saw when they looked at her apparently. She put in her headphones and watched them talk though she couldn’t hear what they were saying she was watching, learning their ways, their personalities, and their stories.

There was a shorter Hispanic guy, a taller blond well build white guy, a tall kind of skinny brunette guy, a tall about average black headed guy who got on at her bus stop, and a tall black guy. Out of all of them she would have guessed that the short Hispanic one or the black guy or even the tall kind of skinny average black headed one would be interested in her. They immediately became friends though she was unsure of why.

She recalled her first conversation with them her second day going to the school. It was about 7:44 in the morning. She got on the bus and sat in an empty seat. They got through about 4 more bus stops and she was still alone. She had headphones in and felt a tap on her shoulder. It was the short Hispanic one. She removed one of her head phones and he asked her if she was Mexican when she replied no, the black guy asked her if she was Native American. In short it was a strange way to meet people.

She sat with the black guy most days. But she and the blond one seemed to hit it off. They had a lot in common. She still felt like a stranger in this new place though. She knew few people. The blond guy was in her French class and he was the only one she had classes with. It soon transitioned to her sitting with the blond guy every day. Everyone assumed they would end up a couple. She wouldn’t lie she was attracted to him but she knew not to hope. He was a sophomore and she was a freshman. What could she have that interested him so much?

She continued going everyday and just lived that way. She soon began to make friends. She even discovered she had several friends from previous years on her bus. There was her friend Evan a tall black guy she had met last year in her venture classes. There is no way to describe him other than Evan like. He could get away with things that if anyone else did they would get slapped. Then there was drew who she had met in 6th grade at another school. He was funny and one of the only people allowed to say some things to her, Things that if other people said they would have their arm broken for. Then there was of course Amelia who lived down the street from her. Amelia had been her best friend the previous year. They weren’t that close anymore but they were still like sisters in the sense that if one of them ever needed a place to hide a body, the other would grab a map and a shovel.

She soon settled into her life with these people still missing the one she left behind at her last school. She would wrestle with Mikey, the Hispanic guy who would constantly take her iPod. She had bitten him on several occasions. Then the black guy Freddy had simply backed off when she started sitting with Ryne, the blond guy. Ryne’s cousin also rode their bus; he was the brunette average guy whose name was Brandon. Brandon and Amelia kind of had a thing for each other.

Days became shorter as they went on. The bus rides used to seem like forever until she started sitting with Ryne. He was so funny she had started crying once from laughing so hard. Everything was strange in her eyes. He would flirt with her kind of saying things like pretty eyes and rosy cheeks but never going as far as Mikey with grabbing her butt as she got off the bus. But she still refused to believe that he liked her because she knew better.

It was a Friday and she took her usual seat next to Ryne on the bus. He was having a conversation with Evan who was sitting in front of them. Evan then decided that he wanted to sit with them. He asked her if she minded him sitting on her and she objected due to the fact he was so heavy he squished her. So he told her to get up and stupidly she did so. He then sat down in her spot. She wanted to know where she was supposed to sit and Evan told her in Ryne’s lap. So while trying to get in his lap she ended up laying across both of them. About ten minutes into that awkward situation Evan told her to put in her headphones and turn up the volume and she did. She could see them talking but had never been good at reading lips so she stayed clueless. Though she was almost sure it was about her since they kept looking at her.
About a week later, they were on the bus one after noon. It was a Thursday and she was yet again sitting with Ryne. Evan was sitting behind them and drew was in the seat across the aisle from him. She was yet again instructed to put in her headphones so she did. They all started looking from one to another in a deep conversation and then at her. Ryne said something very entertaining because all three of them immediately started laughing so hard they were falling over. She just listened to her music and stared out the window not knowing what they were talking about and not very concerned but knew instinctively that it was about her whatever it might be. A few minutes later Evan tapped her on the shoulder and she took out her earphones. He then told Ryne to put in earphones but his reply was that his iPod had been stolen so Evan took hers and handed it to him. He pulled her into another seat and blocked her way out. Drew had already gotten off the bus and Evan immediately asked her if she liked Ryne. Her instinct Screamed at her to lie to him but she ignored it so she told him yeah a little. He told her to make a move and she told him she was the chick and it wasn’t her job to make the first move. He told her that Ryne never would and she said I guess nothing will happen then. She got up and went back to her seat taking her iPod from Ryne.

It was just about his stop when he turned to her and said her name. She looked up at him and he took her hand and asked her if she would go out with him. She tried to suppress her laughter because she thought he was joking. She knew not to take everything anyone said to heart because that was a sure fire way to get hurt. She said sure and he got off the bus without another word. She turned to Evan and asked if she had just been punk’d. He was not happy that she thought that because Ryne liked her.

Then next morning she got on the bus and sat down in an empty seat by herself. When he got on the bus no surprise he sat with her. He asked her if she wanted to know what he had said to make them all laugh so hard and she said sure. He told her I told them that I normally had no problem kicking puppies whether they were sick or hurt or dying or starving but told her that she was the only puppy he could not kick. She just laughed at him and his crazy analogies. He said what I meant by it though was that I normally don’t have trouble with girls but you are the only one I do because I actually like you a lot.



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