Going back to school with a boyfriend was the weirdest experience of Christine’s life. She wasn’t the type of girl who would have a steady boyfriend, and she knew that she was going to receive weird reactions when people began to find out. The talking began when she and Jon were spied at the bus stop holding hands. Then when they walked on and sat next to each other, those who didn’t seen them holding hands began to whisper also. Jon was not the type of person to sit next to anyone. He usually had his headphones on, with the music loud enough for him to ignore everyone, and sat next to the window by himself. No one sat next to him if they could help it. It wasn’t as if he would speak to anyone if they did sit next to him. Christine was the complete opposite of him. Usually she would sit next to one of the more popular boys and flirt shamelessly the whole bus ride. The two of the sitting next to each other and conversing was like a scene from the twilight zone. It was out of character for both of them, and the nosier students on the bus could not wait to get off and gossip with their friends.
Since Jon was used at ignoring the world, it was easier for him to ignore the gossip that was filling the school bus than it was for Christine. She knew that her reputation was at stake, and while some would see her losing her reputation as a whore was a good thing she did not see it this way. Christine loved the attention she received from the guys in school. Once word spread that she was officially taken, the attention would dwindle until Jon was the only one who noticed her. She would become an ordinary student with a nerd boyfriend, and while in some aspects Christine didn’t want this, in other aspects she did. She didn’t think she could keep up this image much longer, and once the year was over and she was off to college, then what? She couldn’t continue this way of life forever. She knew she had to stop sometime and maybe Jon was the key to that. Maybe going out with him would stop her for good and the only way to know would be to try.
When the school bus pulled up to the side of the school to let everyone off Christine took a deep breath. This is where her new beginning started. She knew she would have to restrain herself from flirting with any other guy besides Jon, and she knew it was going to be difficult. She pasted on a confident smile though, so Jon couldn’t tell how nervous she was. They were the last ones to get off the bus, she while no one besides the handful of kids on the bus saw them holding hands yet, the news was already spreading. Christine could hear the whispers from the kids they passed as they walked across the school lawn and into the building. She couldn’t help but glance over at Jon to see if he had any reaction to the whispers that followed them down the hall, but he seemed to be ignoring them just as well as he did on the bus.
They followed each other to their lockers, making small talk before home room while Christine tried to ignore the glances they received from passersby. When the first bell rang for them to get to home room Christine knew this was going to be the biggest shock to anyone who was spying on them.
“I’ll see you at lunch?” Jon asked her, bringing her attention back to him and away from the students scurrying off to home room.
“Yeah, of course,” she replied, and then quickly gave him a peck on the lips and scurried off into the crowds, feeling slightly embarrassed. Almost instantly, Christine felt ashamed for feel embarrassed. She shouldn’t have to be embarrassed of who she was dating, even if it was Jon. It wasn’t the fact that it was Jon she was dating that made her feel embarrassed, she reasoned with herself. It was because she was dating anyone exclusively that was the embarrassing part. Pushing past the crowd the stragglers that hung around the open classroom door, Christine sprinted toward her desk, and sank into her chair hoping that no one noticed her walk in. She didn’t think she could handle anyone talking to her just yet. Pulling her backpack onto her lap, she began to rummage through it for nothing in particular. She just needed something to do to pass the time, because sitting and staring off into space wasn’t going to help her this morning. She didn’t trust her mind or her eyes to wander, too afraid of what she might start to think of or who she might start to stare at.
Unfortunately, her hopes of having a quiet homeroom were dashed after roll was taken. Christine had given up her pointless search through her bag, and decided to try to read a book she borrowed from Jon, which was a rare thing for her. The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien was not the type of book Christine would’ve ever been caught reading before, not that she would ever let herself be caught reading anything, but Jon raved so much about it when she asked what the big deal was about those books that she felt obligated as his girlfriend to try to read something he thought so highly of. She wasn’t even past the first page when her reading was interrupted by a shadow that fell over the page she was on. Glancing up, Christine automatically recognized from the tall stature the guy who was standing over her. Jamal Johnson, a regular of hers, leaned over her desk, smiling charmingly down at her.
“What’cha reading there, Christine?” he asked her, laughing slightly as if he were telling a joke.
“Nothing,” she said as she swiftly closed the book and slipped it back into her backpack.
Once it was away, Jamal lost interest in teasing her and got right down to the reason why he was bothering her at all. “What are you doing tonight? I got some tickets to go see Quantum of Solace and I wanted to see if you would be interested in going with me.”
Christine almost let a groan escape her as she thought of the prospect of seeing the latest Bond film. What was it with guys and thinking that Bond films turned girls on? It wasn’t that she didn’t want to see the film, because she did, she just wasn’t sure if it would be a good idea to see it with Jamal. Especially since she knew what activities he would want to partake in after, or even during, the movie.
“I’m sorry Jamal, I have plans tonight,” she said simply, hoping that would make him go away.
“So? Just blow them off like you usually do.”
Damn, Christine thought. She forgot that any plans she already had were never more important than Jamal, in his eyes anyway. “I can’t Jamal they’re plans with my boyfriend. We’re actually going to see Quantum of Solace tonight too, so I’ll see you there, I guess.” Lying through her teeth was one of Christine’s best skills. While she did have plans with Jon that night, they weren’t going to see Quantum of Solace, but watch a movie at Jon’s house. So she was only partly lying.
“Boyfriend?” Jamal laughed aloud, “Yeah right, Christine. That sure is a good one. What’s the real reason you don’t want to go out with me? Getting your period or something?”
For some reason the comment about her lying about have a boyfriend infuriated her, even though she was embarrassed to admit that she had a boyfriend at all. “No, Jamal, I am not getting my period or something,” she replied through gritted teeth. Thankfully the bell rang for first period and she was able to grab her backpack and leave. She rushed from the room so fast she literally banged into Jon, almost knocking them both over.
“Hey there, stranger,” he said to her. Taking one look at her face he knew something was wrong. “What’s up?” he asked sounding concerned.
Glancing over her shoulder slightly, she saw Jamal standing right behind them in the doorway. “It’s nothing,” she said, standing on tiptoe and swiftly kissing Jon. “Walk me to class?”
A small smile appeared on Jon’s face from the kiss, “Yeah, sure.” Taking hold of her hand, they walked down the hall together, Christine gleefully thinking of the look of shock on Jamal’s face.