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Fast Times at Ecbatana High

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In case you think I’m some loser nobody, my family was super rich back in Iran before the revolution. And now my dad owns a successful car dealership on Main Street. I may not be the coolest kid at EcTech, but I’m not on the chess team, and my life is pretty ok. Except for today. Because today was my sixteenth birthday. And literally no one cared, including my parents.

“I mean, seriously Doriskos, I kept dropping hints, but they’re so thick. It's like I don’t even exist.”

“I don’t know what to say man…” began Doriskos.

I opened my locker to get my books, revealing my poster of Kyros, who are only the coolest, glammest rock band ever. I sighed.

“But Bagoas, if you really care, I think you should—“

“Shhhhh!” I shoved Doriskos in the shoulder. My locker is right beside two of the guys on the wrestling team with *Alexander*, and they had just walked up to get their books. They were in the middle of what was clearly an intense debate, and I was pretty sure I heard them say something about Alexander.

“—No way, there’s no way they’re fucking. He just started dating Roxane.”

“I know, I know, but have you seen they way they look at each other in study hall? That is the look of lust man, I am telling you.”

“No, I am telling you! Alexander literally introduced Roxane to me as his GIRLFRIEND last week.”

“Ok, ok, but that doesn’t mean he’s not fucking Hephaistion. And him and Alexander have been friends for WAY longer than Roxane has even been at this school.”

“Yeah, but Roxane is really hot man, and he seems really into her.”

“Yeah, well I heard it from Seleucus last week that Alexander and Hephaistion went to 6th base behind the bleachers during the civic pride assembly.”

“Seleucus is such a piece of shit, what even is 6th base?”

“Intercrural sex, dumbass!” He slammed his locker shut and began walking down the hall. I really really wanted to hear the rest of this conversation, but I would have to wait for more information.

Doriskos was staring at me with a weird look on his face. “What was that about?”

“Nothing,” I snapped. This was really embarrassing.

“No way was that nothing. Are you into Hephaistion or something?”

“Um, NO, gross.”

“So… Alexander?”

“Oh my GOD, shut UP!!!”

“You DO like Alexander! Hahaha, you want to get in his spandex so bad.”

“Doriskos.” I put my hands on his shoulders, “Doriskos, you can’t tell anyone about this. I’m serious.”

“Okay, ok! Jesus Christ.” He turned back to his locker and started shoving books in his bag. I stared at Kyros one last time (god, they really wore the tightest pants) and slammed my locker shut.

“Come on, lets take the short cut to the science annex,” I said, and grabbed Doriskos’s elbow to drag him down the hall.

We walked out the main entrance under the rundown Ecbatana Technical sign with the missing ‘I’ and down the steps, where we hopped over the fence to duck around the side of the school. But before we could do that, I heard a familiar engine roar. My heart sank.

“Hey doll-face!” It was Darius. I looked over at him, pulling up in front of the school in his brand new convertible. He bought it from my dad before we broke up. I truly think he wanted that car more than he wanted me, but it was clear that in this moment he wanted both of us. Who knows how he’d feel in a few months. It was part of why I’d broken up with him in the first place.

“Why don’t you ditch last period and go for a ride with me?” He revved the engine and winked. People in the quad were starting to stare. Doriskos walked back to stand beside me.

“Screw off asshole, you don’t even go here!” Doriskos yelled.

“Yeah, how ‘bout you let your friend speak for himself. Bagoas, babe, ditch these losers. I know none of these EcTech jerkoffs can show you a good time like me.”

“Darius, go home. We’re over. I told you that two months ago.”

His smile turned nasty. “Yeah, I guess you needed some space to slut around with all the guys on the wrestling team? I know you like getting slammed around. But I’ll be the one slamming them into the mats at the meet tomorrow.” Darius revved his engine again, and looked over to the other side of the quad. “Hey Alexander!” he yelled. “Tomorrow afternoon? I’m coming for you! I’m going to destroy you. But I bet you like it on your back too. Later assholes!” And with that, he sped off.

I was shaking, and I’m sure my face was bright red. This day was quickly becoming the most embarrassing one of my life.

“Bagoas, lets go, he’s not worth it.” Doriskos grabbed my arm. I was still staring at Darius driving away. When I turned back towards the school, I saw Alexander. He was standing with his friends on the wrestling team. Some of them were staring angrily after Darius. Some of them were arguing amongst themselves. Hephaistion was talking passionately to Alexander, his hand on one shoulder. And Alexander was staring right at me.