Coming of Age Funny High School

The frozen lake on an empty winter afternoon, the echoing silence and moaning gusts of wind through the barren trees was a peaceful and serene contrast to the blasts coming through the brand new stereo sound system Rosa had received from Teddy for passing her last English test, as she cranked her new device to full volume, allowing her selections of guttural punk music to rupture through the bungalow walls while Rosa did her makeup. She had already botched the job several times, either making it look too overdone to the point of looking trampy, or too perfectly pretty, plastic Barbie doll looking. She was growing frustrated with her repeated failings and she was sick of her face in the mirror, taking her rage out on the band tee and thin red nylon stockings she had been ripping intentionally to go with her tattered denim skirt, while taking swigs from a grapefruit vodka cooler. The music stopped for a moment and she walked across the room to let the sound rupture her body and the rest of the house once more, to let the sounds heat and bubble inside her smelting acidic veins. Again, she looked into her eyes to see the mascara had been laid on too thick this time, leaving her with the appearance of a gothic girl, while she was aiming for more of a tragic heroin rockstar look, minimal, but eye catching and evocative in a christlike masochistic type of way, a martyr, tragic hero suicide, type of way. The red stockings were just eye catching enough she hoped, to steal at least some of the attention from Val. She knew Val was going to bring her most fiery seductive glances, her most skintight outfit, her most lusty, most salacious and alluring winks and hip swings and tongue movements to try and attract Jay Henderson, and Rosa wasn’t about to pull any punches at trying to keep up. She had fantasized about this night for sometime, thinking about it since her mother’s death ever since she had heard the rotten, vile, inner ear wounding sounds of Jay's band, The Christ Incarnates. Initially, Rosa had been more interested in the bass player, Chester Stinson, but after discovering Val had already conquered his heart once in the summer prior behind a gas station, and since she was moving on to take Jay as well, Rosa had decided to chase Jay herself. She had been eating considerably less, weighting herself considerably more, and even working out in her room for the first time in her entire life. Teddy had bought her dumbbells, a premium brand jump rope and a brand new pink and black aerodynamic, breathable tracksuit coupled with the most expressive pair of “Athena” running shoes for Rosa to begin her fitness career. And so, Teddy had been forced to also stock up on protein powder and kale and egg whites, coupled with a state of the art blender, preparing smoothies and omelettes and salads and T bone steaks all of which Rosa picked at and spanned out from one meal into several over the course of weeks. Rosa couldn’t think about her mother or her grades or anything without her mind immediately jumping to her waistline and the image of Val, Val and her perfectly plump lips, her ever slender figure regardless of all the pizza and shakes and hotdogs, her diamond cut eyes and her fizzy soda pop voice, so sweet and refreshing and addictive. Rosa knew she was in over her head, she knew it every morning as she got dressed and every night as she laid in bed, naked and cold and dispossessed and resenting herself, Vals image repeatedly entering into her mind. 

There was no sun over the lake, there were only clouds and wind and a cold draft sweeping through the windows, an icy chill that reflected frozen shadows into the room simply from a glance at the winter afternoon outside. Rosa isolated herself from her melancholy and doom and her desire to vomit with chest thumping, ear stabbing songs, featuring female vocalists who screeched and hollered like endlessly tortured kittens on their menstrual cycles. Rosa felt her bones throbbing and her intestines spitting gasoline and she tasted a sour disgust for humanity and the world and suddenly she felt the desire to cut herself. The hours rolled on and she smoked cigarettes and drank vodka and waited for the night to come as she looked herself in the mirror impatiently, compulsively as if the reflection before her could somehow make a drastic change, each time growing more dissatisfied with the layers of skin and fat that remained no matter how tightly she tried pinching it away. Squeezing her fat deposits, Her mind jumped back to the summer and being at Val’s pool party, and she suddenly tasted cold leftover turkey and an ashtray in her throat. 

It hadn’t occurred to Rosa then in her pink two piece swimsuit how competitive and jealous she really was, for at the time she was simply too busy trying to fit in too busy molding herself into a mirror reflection of Val's likeness. Sensing this, Val passed her enough alcohol and weed to stifle her ability to think, and Rosa swam around, floating on water and marijuana and the raging blasts of Val’s parents brand new stereo and the friends of her older brother’s obnoxious, over exaggerated laughter. 

“Dude fucking chug that shit.”

“Are you gonna fuck her dude?”

“Shes only like 14, man. “


“Yeah you’re right”

“Fucking chug that shit!”

“Yo guys, they have some serious munchies In that kitchen.”

“Grant if you weren’t such a fat fuck maybe you’d get some one of these days”

“Fuck you, Chris”

The backyard was a lush, tropical safe haven for underage drinking and partying, complete with a cabana, a pool house filled with liquor and of course, a pool with changing coloured lights that made the water glow purple, red, green, yellow and blue all in succession. Val’s brother and his friends all had names like Greg and Dean and Craig and all of them played ice hockey and drank Val’s fathers beer and enjoyed the company of Val and her wide selection of young girlfriends. Frank, Val’s brother, was too busy with Laura to notice Val slipping off with Greg and Craig, while Rosa remained in the pool, watching Val and her perfect body swinging side to side, like a rubbery pendulum, escorting the two young boys into the house. 

Rosa had been too drunk at that moment to really realize how jealous she was. The sight of the luxurious house, the conspicuous wealth oozing like green gold bars, the handsome, jagged toothed father and beautiful magazine mother captured happily in the photographs around the house, her father with his perfectly square jaw, her mother with her perfectly round tits, Rosa stared with awe, marvelling at what could only be the epitome of everything she could have ever wanted. 

Rosa continued drinking whatever she could, filling her empty and jealous gut, laughing at the moments when it seemed right and tried to at all times keep her body positioned as seductive and teasingly as possible parting her lips and squinting her eyes in her windy, dazed and absent minded and bored, blow up doll way that she had learned from scrutinizing Val. 

They sat in the hottub, Rosa, Jen , Laura and a handful of hockey players, passing around bottles of hard liquor and joints and painkillers like bonbons. Rosa felt herself on a high speed carousel and she considered laughing hysterically and screaming like a cockatoo, or dropping her head under the boiling water and letting herself get sucked into the salty jets like a scolding pussy. 

“Dude, I’ve seen your dick. It’s not that big.”

“Well of course you’re a connosoier of dicks, so you should know”

The other girls giggled as Rosa rolled her eyes and downed another shot of vodka, feeling it hit her stomach, immediately bouncing back up into her throat, causing her to wretch slightly under her breath. Her head played on like a tin pan alley pianist, clanking against her concrete skull and squealing nasally melodies into her sickened mind. She had watched Val enough times to know how to handle her liquor, or at least how to make it appear that way in front of others, and despite the rattling, the clattering of metal and the killing machine, kitten chopping, drunkenness of her soul. The voices around her dragged on endlessly spreading like bacteria hottub foam and soaking into her skin, but she could hardly make sense of the revolving door of empty voices in her mind. 

All the arm flexing, deep voiced, shaggy haired hockey players became one in the same, impossible for her to differentiate. At the same time, all the girls, her so called best friends, suddenly became indistinguishable as well, nothing but high pitched, pink, squealing pig screams. Rosa blinked with disillusionment as she saw the faces of the girls slowly melting into one, one pornographic cartoon, all of them slowly seeming more and more like Val, Val with her perfect round blue jelly eyes, the perfect strands of wet blonde silken hair, the perfect innocent grin, that said

“I’m better than you, and you fucking know it, and so does everybody else. I’m everything you wish you were. I’m your wildest dreams and your worst fucking nightmare. You fantisize about me while you touch yourself, and Im better than your best orgasm. You cry in your pillow while you consider my absolute divine perfection, and your pussy wettens your bed by the thought of me. You worship me.”

Rosa blinked with bewilderment and drank in the image of Val’s beauty enshrined in all the girls, reflecting in the eyes of all the guys, the true beatific vision that Val has bestowed onto all the people she had encountered, her beauty, her lifestyle, her complete disregard for anything aside from matters involving her own pleasure, it had all become embedded in the souls of everyone who had known her.  Suddenly Rosa felt bald and cancerous and her entire body was concrete as an undigested meal, a solid clay log of grey shit and ashes.

While Val could smear any of their reputations, could insult them however she wanted, could take their boyfriends no one dared to do the same towards her accepting their verbal abuse as part of the package. Hannah Piller, the one girl who had once let out the secret about secret Val’s foot wart issue inevitably moved to another school after the punishment and social ostracism she had faced. Another girl, Candace, a red headed girl with a nice leather jacket. had once pointed out a sauce stain on Val’s shirt was repaid by losing her boyfriend to Val, only for her to dump the guy a week later. Val sat in a throne of admiration and glory, her perfect skin glistening like melted drops of caramelized gold, she was the ultimate deity, and her perfection demanded complete loyalty and devotion in return from her followers. 

“Jenny fucked Bruce and his little brother”

“Wait aren’t you Jenny?”

Came the swirling voices into Rosa’s brain. 

“No I’m jen, Jenny is the one whose dad went to prison.”

“Oh right. Her mom is smoking. I swear I’ve seen her giving me the eye when she comes to my store.”

“As if she wants some fucking stock boy, dude. Get real”

“I’ll stock her up, boy.”

“But seriously, I don’t believe you’re actually that big....”

“Hey, does anyone have coke?”

“Fuck I feel weird.”

“You’re such a lightweight dude.”

The red faced laughter and meandering conversation continued until the others stumbled inside the castle house while Rosa found herself alone in the hot tub with Marcus. Marcus had curly black hair and dark eyes and pale skin, he was skinny, but in a way that made his jagged bone structure appear menacing and attractive in a boyish adolescent way. He had a ghostly way about him, always there, but barely, as if he had one foot in the grave. His fingers seemed absent of skin, his veins seemed thirsting for blood, his lips were blue as he spoke and no matter how impassioned he was while he spoke his eyes never opened more than halfway. His long wisps of black hair were combed to hang straight down his thin right eye brow like an oil spill, and every now and then he brushed the strands aside, keeping them away from his eye. Rosa’s advances were somehow being resisted by Marcus whom unlike any guy she had ever met, appeared more interested in talking than anything else having to do with her sex. 

“Sometimes I close my eyes and think, if only I could stay here...”

He said while Rosa kissed his veiny pale neck  

She was either too drunk, too disinterested, or too sexually aroused to have any idea what Marcus was saying. 

“ I wonder what it would be like to get out of this meat suit, to leave this brain and this swirling sewer of a soul. Like if only I had a cave somewhere, So far beyond this bullshit and this cheesy, stinking rotting mortal coil. I’m so passed the point of caring I'm so beyond this game of masks and this insect dance. I listen to these people and all I hear is a vacuum, a jet engine, a bumble bees ass. I look into their eyes and they look like dead , cum filled plastic dolls, all of them, eating, shitting, breathing fuck dolls. We stand upon the shoulders of giants, great men who gave us whag we have today, and here we are, lost in a fucking supermarket. Hand me the Vunderbread. “ 

Rosa felt a sharp tingle along her skin, ringing into her ears as if to say “listen, listen, listen!” But she ignored his words and moved her hands down from his shoulders. 

“And then I wonder if any of this is worth it? Is the game worth the candle? Like I know I’ll never be able to forget what I already know. I can't forget the disgrace that I have realized myself to be, I cant uncon myself from being this con man, this cunning stunt, this sideshow freak of the back page of yesterday's reality. I realize that my future doesn’t exist here, or anywhere, but if it does, it exists in solitude. Alone in a cabin, jerking off for sustenance, you know what I mean ? “

Rosa’s hand began reaching down his trunks. 

“Like one day, I’ll just take off. Me and a dog maybe. Willy, maybe he'll have one eye. And that’s it. No more capitalism or rat sucking. No more keeping up with appearances, no more baptism. Maybe then I’ll finally be goddamn sane. Then I can piss in peace! That’s what it takes now it seems.“

“You’re fucking boring!”

Said Rosa, scrambling to her feet, the water splashing on her way out of the tub. 

Marcus sat with a pensive expression for a few moments, the hottub jets whirring, then stroking his hair to the side of his face while Rosa emerged into the house, without a towel, headlong towards the fridge. Downing the contents of a half empty beer can, she proceeded to dig into a leftover container with a oily turkey leg and cold french fries. 

“How could he reject me?”

She said to herself. 

“I must be fat, that must be it. “

She said clutching her belly, her mouth filled with French fries and her tongue red and enflamed. 

“Nobody could ever want me. Nobody. I’m nothing like her. I’m nothing like Val. Fuck this. Fuck this.” 

She said, opening the freezer door, her throat tightening around a twisted burning rod. 

After about half of a container of ice cream, she heard a herd of footsteps coming downstairs. Immediately she stuffed everything back into the freezer before Val came into the kitchen, followed by two muscled bodies, just barely maintaining Rosa’s turkey and Ice cream binge a secret. 

“What are you doing all by yourself? Stop being such a loner.” 

Said Val, smiling, her dripping post coital glow leaving her radiant and decadent and awe inspiring, reflecting all of Rosa’s self loathing and gloom and pity back into her creamy frozen heart. 

Before Rosa could say anything the other Val lookalikes came out from the pitched black living room with only blankets around them like marching sex robots, followed by three other muscular bodies, all pictured with big grins, their eyes reflexively landing directly upon Val, the Madonna, simultaneously. 

“Oh good, you’re done finally. Maybe now you’ll join us, we were gonna go for a skinny dip!”

They all agreed to pile into the hottub first, and then as Val had dared them, to then jump naked into the pool and freeze before returning to the hottub. The whole bunch of jocks and Val wannabes packed into the hottub and passed around vodka and cigarettes and bad jokes, and laughed so loud and got so inebriated it took a while before anyone remembered about jumping into the pool. Rosa got dared to go first, and so she was the first to see Marcus floating facedown In the pool, the changing colours of the pool light reflecting upon his skin, purple red,, blue, green, yellow. 

All Rosa could taste on her engorged tongue was oily Turkey and the icy burn of rejection, she felt hungry again and wished Val had never come downstairs.

December 23, 2020 07:01

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