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Mondays were a pain in the ass. Constant pain in the ass. Todd Bowden was driven up the absolute fucking wall, with his friend Joey's constant bragging about who he bagged over the weekend at some big kegger. A kegger that Todd had not attended due to the excessive amounts of studying he endured. Being valedictorian meant he had to keep up with the books, not the pals. Girls were unimportant. Going out with friends to the mall lacked significance. Todd was indeed an apt pupil, just as his parents had raised him. A pressure cooked kid who was about to burst.

Todd often wondered why he and Joey were even friends. Inseparable since elementary school, best friends since their start on the Little League team. But they were completely different. Joey barely qualified in his classes, Todd passed with flying colors. Joey was more concerned with indulging in illegal substances and going on aimless adventures around Santo Donato. Todd was more concerned with studying for the next trigonometry exam and the theme behind The Picture of Dorian Grey. But in all honesty, Todd did have other priorities besides school-- secrets he kept all to himself. Fascinations he held deep within his mind. Tucked within a suitcase. A skeleton in the closet. In a place where no one would suspect a thing.


"You'll never guess who likes you." Joey suddenly blurted. Todd snapped out of his daze, gazing up at his tall comrade. The two seniors ambled on down the corridor, bumping into bodies in the sea of pock-marked teenagers. Todd had that awful, sour taste in his mouth. Like he had been sucking on pennies in replacement of hard candies.

"What? Who?" Todd wedged himself between a guy from his AP English class and some chick who smelled like she marinated herself in White Diamond perfume. Todd gagged on the musty fragrance.

A smirk stretched across Joey's round face. "Two words-- Becky. Trask." 

Todd's eyes grew wide at the sound of his classmate's name. Becky Trask. She was definitely a girl one could not ignore, and she made it her own personal mission to be known wherever she went. Loud, precocious, and undeniably beautiful. But a complete whore. Becky Trask liked Todd? For what? The thing inside his boxers?

"You know who I'm talking about, right?" Joey inquired, cocking a thick eyebrow at his small friend. The younger boy nodded his head violently in response. Of course, he fucking knew who Becky was. Her father Ray Trask worked alongside Todd's, Richard Bowden. And for years, years, the parents of the two teenagers had tried setting them up.


(setting me up for failure, that's what. those slimy, cum-sucking)


"Yes, Joey. I know who she is." Todd responded absentmindedly. He didn't have time for these gimmicks again. 


(shove my fucking pencil in your eye, you dumbass.)


"Well, what are you going to do?"

Todd let out an irritated huff, clutching his stack of textbooks tight against his chest. "Joey, I don't have time for this."

"You gonna ask her out?"

"I'll think about it," Todd shrugged nonchalantly. Joey let out a groan, slapping his palm against his forehead dramatically.

"No, you can't just think about it! C'mon, do it for me! If you don't take her up on the offer, I sure will." 


The two boys stopped dead in their tracks near Joey's next class, Trigonometry. A subject Todd was even having a rough time with. The students around them continued to make a beeline to their next lesson. Todd had Sociology and the teacher was pretty lax, so being a bit tardy was no big deal.

"Do it and I'll kick you in the nuts," Todd said through grit teeth. Joey simply laughed at the remark. His pal simply gave a snicker, but Todd knew that his own laughter was insincere. And Joey had no idea.

"Hey, could you loan me your trig notes from last year?" The lunkhead asked, his lips curving into a bashful smile. Todd rolled his eyes and couldn't help but smirk. He slugged Joey in the arm with a scoff.

"I knew this was leading to something!"

"Please, Todd? Fiscarelli is kicking my ass!" Joey pleaded. Todd chewed on his tongue, debating on whether or not he would actually be his teammate's knight in shining armor. Eventually, the younger boy succumbed to Joey's ceaseless insistence. He told the buffoon he would bring them tomorrow, and Joey was bouncing on his heels with joy. 


The two childhood friends parted, going in opposite directions to make it to class before the bell rang. Sauntering off to Sociology, Todd still had the urge to sink the lead of his pencil into Joey's cornea.