I was having a test first period in English. Chaucer. What I didn’t know about Chaucer. I had fallen asleep the night before trying to cram it all in. I should have studied along and along but what the heck, there was too much going on to study all the time. I had my books in my left hand walking to class and my study sheet in my right hand trying to pack it in for the next hour. If I crammed now it would come out in a steady stream during the test. That was my theory at least.
Who was the wife of Bath? My only remembrance is the gap between those two front teeth being a sign of sexual promiscuity. That’s sex and lots of it like I think of when I see that cute thing walking past. What a nice swing on that back porch as the eyes wander over the upper curves. She certainly filled out since last year. Man, would I like to take her home. Whoa, get back to the test subject. She is really fine.
And so it went as I walked past all the cuties standing chatting on the breezeway, my mind flitting from the test subject and the living curves all around me. I simply could not keep my mind on the work I had to do to pass this test.
I was wakened from my innocent lusting by JR next to me.
“Huh? Oh. Hey JR. Did you want something?” I shoved my study sheet in my English book.
“Uh, yeah. Um, could I borrow the key to your house?” JR had an odd smile on his face as he asked.
“My key? What for?” Not just an odd smile but an odd request as well.
“Well, um, I was going to cut today with some football buddies. We kind of need a place to gather.”
“Why my place?” I wasn’t too keen on this request.
“Well, hell, Rickey. Your place is the most secluded one around. We thought we’d get together for some practice. You know, football stuff.”
It sounded kind of strange to me.
“Why don’t you do that here? You know, where the football field is.”
“Uh, um. This is more an indoor sport.” He said this with a nervous chuckle.
“Sounds fishy to me. And I still don’t understand why you want to do that at my house. What’s wrong with your house or one of the other players’ houses?”
“Oh come on, Rickey. Your parents both work. There’s nobody home. At our houses at least one parent would be home. We kind of need some privacy for these particular plays.”
I looked at him and wondered what the heck football plays need privacy.
“I don’t understand, JR. What the heck is private about football? And why wouldn’t you want to be near the field to test your plays? It doesn’t make sense to me.”
A frown began to cross his brow.
“Do you play football?”
“You know I don’t.”
“So what the hell do you know about it? All I’m asking is to use your house for the afternoon.”
“So you want to meet at my house without me there? How about me getting in on this meeting?” I was beginning to think I might be missing out on some fun.
“I would say yeah if you played on the team. But me and the guys have been planning this for some time. We just want to borrow it for the afternoon.”
The bell rang. All those cute curvy bottoms were sashaying past. My eye was caught. My mind drifted to undressing those nubile bodies so tempting to this weak weak flesh. JR’s request became less important as my feet wanted to follow what my eyes had latched onto.
“Rickey! It’s important!”
“Huh? What’s that?” I muttered reaching my hand as if to touch that soft and firm bottom passing by. His arguments had been forgotten. My mind was otherwise occupied.
“Your key! You know. The key to your house. Can we borrow it?” He was becoming frantic with his request.
He turned me to face him.
“Listen up. You want us to win the game this week don’t you?” He was trying to interest me in a sacrifice for the team and for the school. “Come on! For the sake of the game. This meeting is important for our team spirit.”
In actuality I didn’t give a fig for the team’s spirit. I just wanted to run to that girl in the tight sweater and ask her out.
“Huh? I don’t have a key, JR. You know my house is never locked. The milkman has to be able to get in to put our milk in the fridge. Leeme alone. Can’t you see I want that sweet thing over there?”
“Oh, yeah. Now I know why you’re so distracted. That’s right Tiger,” he said with a laugh. “Go get ‘er. She wants you. I can tell.”
And with that he was gone. I turned where he had been only to see empty space. I noticed two or three of the football players running toward the cars. Wish I knew what the heck that was all about, I thought. As that thought dwindled I saw sunlight bounce off some thick brunette tresses jouncing atop shoulders sporting yarn which was stretched to the max across her… I gotta quit these thoughts and study for this test.
That was when I noticed the breezeway was devoid of students. My last vision had slipped through the doors into the hallway.
Panic ensued. The English test! I was going to be late. I ran barely making the class. Our English teacher was at the door tapping her foot at me.
“Come on! You’re late!” Her face was stern but her eyes twinkled. I was one of her favorite students. It was a good feeling. I passed her and to my seat I trotted. I took out my study sheet for one last glimpse.
“All papers away,” said our teacher. “There are only two questions. I hope you studied your material thoroughly. This test is one-third of your semester grade don’t forget.”
Holy crap! I didn‘t know that. The fear factor popped up. All thoughts of sexy seniors and gap-toothed women fled my cranium. JR and friends? That little scene was forgotten in the panic of the moment. I read the first question. Not a clue so I skipped it. Second question. I must have studied the wrong stuff. My heart began to pound in a totally different way from the way it did with sight of sweet shapely female forms newly acquired by our girl students. And, yet, my mind drifted into the arms of the girl sitting two rows over.
“Stop it!” I shouted in my head. With that jolt of reality I studied the questions once more. I placed my pencil on the third line from the top of my ruled paper. The scratching of carbon from my pencil commenced into a complete bull session in hopes that I might capture a wisp of what I was supposed to have read for this test. It was a slim chance, however. The Classics Illustrated version wasn’t going to be enough to help with this. MacBeth. It was a total curveball. My only hope was to remember the class sessions we covered this. I wrote until my hand hurt and the bell rang.
Filing past her desk I lay my paper on the green blotter.
“How’d you do, Rickey? You were certainly writing a lot over there,” she said looking at me with those bright eyes full of mischief.
I always loved her dark hair sprinkled with silver and those bright shining eyes hiding intelligence far beyond my imagination.
Intelligence is such a turn on, I thought to myself. I smiled showing my teeth, hoping my eyes sparkled with intelligence.
“Another paper littered with bull? Or did you understand this one?’ she was taunting me.
“I’ve always liked that particular play by the bard,” I said with my nose at a slight upward tilt. “It’s a really dark one and a bit depressing. What with the wife goading him into brandishing a knife with gouts of blood, how could it not be dark?”
“Ah, I see,” she said. “Another pen brandished with gouts of bull. Very good, Rickey. Let’s hope you have enough truth between the cow pats.” She chuckled and turned her attention to the next student.
Wow, I thought. If she were only a few years younger or I a few years older what a pair we would make. At that moment the rich brown tresses seen prior to class passed by and I was tripping along behind her.
The bell rang after our third class. I trudged over to the cafeteria for another nutritious meal along with everyone else. The line moved quickly. I looked for JR but he was missing along with the other players I had seen hot footing it the parking area. Odd. As I look around to find a seat I was vaguely aware two of the prettiest senior girls were not anywhere to be seen. It was always nice to gaze on them. Talk about female development. Hubba hubba. I shrugged it off as I caught sight of my English teacher. I smiled, waved and dreamed of finding a cottage with her.
“Rickey!” came a shout from the other side of the room. I waved turning in that direction. I placed my tray next to RB who was chatting up his girlfriend.
“You guys going to the dance? Like I don’t already know,” I said with a smile.
“Of course. How about you?” He scooped potatoes into his spoon and held it as if he were going to catapult it in an arc across the room.
“I don’t know if BR can make it this weekend,” I said referring to the girl I was dating. She was a sophomore at a college in the upstate. “I need to call her to find out. If she can’t I guess I’ll go stag.”
RB let fly his glob of potato and turned his head down to his plate.
There was a soft plash two tables over.
“Alright who did that?”
I turned to see who his target had been. Turning around with a chuckle I winked and said, “Good shot.” It was one of the class bullies. He was too dim to figure the trajectory and a very deserving recipient. Rb and I laughed.
The rest of the day I went to class. In between walking to the next one I casually checked out the students but JR and his buddies were nowhere to be seen. Double strange were the two missing senior sweeties. I gave them no more thought as my body turned to walk in the steps of the beauty with the bouncing brunette curls. It was just another day in High School.
With the final bell I followed everyone else to the buses waiting in a semi-circle beyond the front doors. Mine was three down and I moseyed to it. The engine was running as I climbed aboard.
“Where’s ID?” I asked the substitute driver.
“Dang if I know,” he said. “Got a call early this morning about taking his route. Some secret team meeting. Don’t know what it was about. New plays I reckon. It’s always nice to get a check at the end of the month even if only a coupla bucks.”
“Weird,” I said. “Wonder what it was all about?”
“Don’t have a clue. Move on back. You’re blocking the stairs.”
Looking back I saw a line of crabby kids backed up.
“Move it!” the one in front yelled.
“OK. Ok. I’m moving.”
I jumped down from the bottom step and the door folded behind me. My stop consisted of me walking to the end of the road to the last house on the right. It popped into my mind that JR was right about one thing, my house was out of the way. Inside I tossed my books on the table which was clean of clutter and shining as if it had been scrubbed spic and span bright. It seemed a little odd but I gave it no thought. I grabbed the milk out of the fridge and poured a glass. The milkman had done it again, two quarts of Grade A. Just what a growing boy needed. Starting to the TV room I grabbed a bag of chips which was strange because a new bag of chips in the middle of the week was not the norm in this house. I scratched my head promptly forgetting it.
I clicked the TV on. After it warmed up channel five was on. Nobody in this house watched channel five much. I was beginning to feel like I was in a Twilight Zone episode. I put my glass on the table beside my chair. The lamp wasn’t in its usual place. I changed the channel and American Bandstand was just beginning. I settled in with a handful of chips.
My mother came in through the back door.
“Hello, anyone home?” She called from the kitchen.
“I’m back here, mom.” Gene Pitney was guesting on the show and started his song when my mother appeared at the door.
Eyes glued to the tube I said, “yes ma’am?”
“I just wanted to thank you. That was so sweet.”
My brow crinkled at the bridge of my nose. “Ma’am?”
“What you did. It was so thoughtful. You must have known what a bad day I was having.”
‘What are you talking about, mom?”
“Don’t act so humble, Rickey. It was a really nice thing. Cleaning up. Making the beds. Putting away the dishes. I’m as pleased as I can be. Such a wonderful gesture. Thank you so much.”
“Uh, you’re welcome?” I mumbled.
Those idiots! I thought.
“I’m glad you’re pleased.”
She came over and patted me on the head.
“Pleased? I’m tickled pink.” She went back to the kitchen to start dinner. She was singing. I hadn’t heard her sing in a while.
As the pots and pans began to sound out in the kitchen I got up to look in the bed room. The bed was made. The end tables were spotless. The floor even looked as if it had been vacuumed.
The next morning JR approached me.
“Hey buddy I want to thank you for letting us use your place.”
“You took girls over, didn’t you?”
“Why would you say that?” He looked at me puzzled.
“The place was too clean. What did you do?’
‘Uh, Rickey we did what you only dream about. We took two of the prettiest seniors over to your place and played games in your beds. We were rowdy and rough until the milkman came in the door. He caught the prettiest girl in the kitchen stark naked and dropped a quart of milk on the floor. Funny as hell. He flew out the door apologizing. We had to clean up. Glass and milk was all over the place. Once we were through the girls felt guilty and cleaned everything. What a day. Thanks again.”
“You kook!” I yelled after him. “Don’t ever make up the beds again. It’s a dead giveaway. I almost choked when my mother thanked me for doing the house work. Now she expects it and I’ll have to continue what you started.”
JR just hooted a laugh, then walked to class.
I turned to go to my class. The bouncy brunette was wearing a severely tight sweater. I trailed behind her on a cloud. One day, I thought. One day.