The second dress rehearsal went very well. Aaron and the other boys got their shit together and managed to get through it without any major screw-ups. Karine couldn’t wait for opening night on Thursday. It was going to be awesome.
As she left the auditorium she noticed Cherry borrowing Sarah’s cell phone. Didn’t she have her own phone? What a loser.
“You have to call your mom? I thought you lived within walking distance,” Sarah was asking Cerise.
“I’m calling Terry. He’s giving me a ride home. I mean yeah I could walk, but he wanted to see me one more time tonight.”
Ugh, how lame! Like they couldn’t just email each other? Like it was so crucial to actually see each other face to face? Whatever.
“Aww, that’s so sweet!” said Sarah. “I guess things are going good for you guys now, eh?”
“Yeah,” blushed Cherry, smiling broadly. “It’s going pretty awesome actually.”
“I can’t believe you’re going out with Terry Trebichavsky!” gushed Sarah like a groupie.
“I know!” giggled Cerise. “I have a boyfriend who has a car and who drops me off and picks me up and drives me home. It’s like…”
Cerise giggled and dialed the phone. “Hey! Yeah, we’re done. It went well. Oh, it’s Sarah’s phone. Ok, I’ll see you soon.” Cerise snapped the phone closed and handed it back to Sarah.
“Cool, now Terry knows my number!” said Sarah happily.
They walked outside with Karine trailing close behind. Cerise stood at the front entrance of the school while Sarah waved goodbye and jumped into a waiting car. Karine lit a cigarette as she stepped up next to Cerise. They looked at each other.
“Terry’s picking you up, eh?”
“Yeah. You? Is Steven or…”
“Bus.” Karine turned away from Cerise to exhale smoke rings.
“Oh. Well, I mean… Terry could give you a lift too,” Cerise suggested.
“Yeah? That’d be cool.”
Cerise smiled awkwardly and Karine continued to smoke.
“So the dress went pretty well, eh? You were great,” smiled Cerise.
“Thanks,” Karine smiled tightly. “You too.”
“Thanks,” Cerise looked at her boots and gently kicked at the snow underfoot.
They stood around silently for a while as Karine whittled down her cigarette. She kept her eyes on Cherry the Raspberry the entire time and it was clear that Cerise was getting increasingly uncomfortable. Karine knew she was being bitchy. She knew she should chit-chat about the play or even just look away but it was so easy to make Cherry squirm that Karine couldn’t help but find it amusing.
Cherry kept looking at her watch and finally she announced that she would simply walk home. “Can you just tell Terry… that?”
“Yeah sure,” Karine smirked, finishing her cigarette.
Cerise walked off and a minute later Terry pulled up in his car. Karine got into the passenger side and Terry stared at her in confusion.
“Where’s Cerise?” he asked, annoyed.
“She decided to walk home.”
“I didn’t have a lift so she said I could catch hers.”
Karine buckled her seatbelt and Terry continued to stare at her.
“Ok…” he said, obviously still annoyed.
“Is that cool with you?” she asked angrily. “I don’t mean to screw up your little plans for the evening.”
“Well there’s room for more than one chick in my car. She didn’t have to leave just ‘cause you’re here.”
“So tell her that, not me! She’s the one who chose to leave, ok?”
Terry sighed and started driving. “You ok?” he asked finally.
“What do you care?” she huffed.
“What does that mean?”
“Things going good with you and Cherry?”
“You got a problem, Karine?” He gripped the steering wheel tightly and narrowed his eyes as he watched the road.
“No,” she sniped.
“Yeah, I’m really convinced.”
She sighed heavily.
“Karine, you have to choose. Either you’re gonna be cool or you’re gonna have a bug up your ass but you gotta decide ‘cause I don’t wanna have to guess every day how you’re gonna be.”
“I don’t even know what you’re talking about,” she said.
“Yeah you do. You’re being a bitch and throwing attitude all over the place. And I gotta figure it’s about Cerise ’cause...”
“Oh my god!” she exploded. “Could you be more protective of her? Can’t she fight her own battles?”
“Why is there even a battle to fight? I thought you were gonna lay off of her. I’d expect this from Erica but you? You said you were cool with Cerise!”
“I am cool with her,” she insisted, trying to calm herself down.
“If this is you being cool then…”
“I’m just not cool with how you are when you’re with her.”
“What do you mean?”
“You’re… I dunno.”
“I dunno, you’re just different.”
“I’m how I always am.”
“No, you’re different. You’re different with me.”
“Well you never used to get pissed off at me for one thing.”
“You never used to be so... mean all the time.”
“You never…” she trailed off.
“Nothing, I dunno.”
“Karine, I don’t get it,” he said patiently.
“Neither do I,” she sighed, ending the conversation by staring out the window.
She didn’t know how to explain to Terry that she felt like she was losing him. It’s not like they’d ever been a couple so it didn’t really make sense for her to get all jealous of Cerise, but fuck, why was he so obsessed with that stupid fruit basket?
The next day Karine scrutinized herself in the school bathroom’s mirror and decided that the whole universe was consipiring against her. Everything in her life was turning to shit. Terry was obsessed with his stupid new girlfriend and Steven was a retard and tonight was opening night and now Karine had a zit!
“It’s not that bad,” said Chrissy.
Are you insane? I look hideous! I look like a fucking freak! Oh my god!”
“I have concealer,” offered Chrissy.
“Don’t you understand?! I have to do the play tonight! Tonight, Christina! Do you understand that?!”
“If I were you I’d be more worried about Erica.”
“Oh my god! No fucking shit! She’s gonna crucify me!”
“I have concealer.”
“Well fucking give it to me then!” Karine grabbed the concealer out of Chrissy's hand and dabbed some on her forehead.
Cerise was taking off her coat and hanging it up in her locker. Terry watched her for a moment and then joined her, placing his hand on her back and kissing her neck.
“Hey!” she smiled happily, turning to face him.
They kissed and she reached her hands up to his hair, patting it down behind his ears. He knew he should get a haircut but he enjoyed it so much when she groomed him that he was deliberately putting it off.
“Missed you last night,” he said.
“Yeah, sorry about that. I just… I mean… Karine seemed like she needed the lift more than me.”
“I had room for both of you.”
“Yeah, I just, you know.”
“Did Karine say something to you?”
“Like what?” She ducked back into her locker and grabbed her books for MRE.
“Like I dunno. Was she like… bitchy?”
“No more than usual,” she snarked.
“Yeah well, don’t let her get to you. I mean, she’s cool when you get to know her.”
“Don’t worry,” Cerise smiled. “I’m not gonna let her scare me off.”
Terry grinned and they walked off to homeroom together.
“How come I’m the only one trying to come up with ideas? All you wacktards are completely useless!” Karl stamped his fist on the cafeteria table for emphasis.
“Every time I come up with an idea you shoot it down!” protested Willy.
“Yeah, good times, good times,” nodded Karl, smirking.
“I still don’t think we should do anything,” grumbled Jay.
“Me neither,” agreed Vani. “But if we did do something it would have to be pretty mega. Like, we could push her when she walks by! It would be insane!”
“We should just like throw food at her when she walks into the caf or something,” suggested Willy.
“We can’t do something to her face, wacktards! It has to be subtle and sly and funny.”
“But ultimately harmless, right?” asked Jay.
“But also ultimately eeeevil,” said Vani, stroking the nonexistent goatee he was determined to one day grow.
Cerise walked in with her moronic boyfriend, trailed by the Green Girls. One of the Greens was babbling about how much she was freaking out and the other Green was agreeing that indeed, it was a freak worthy situation. Sarah also seemed excited. They were probably just giddy to be walking behind Terry Trebishitsky and his giant aura of asstacticness.
“I’m totally freaking out!”
“I know, me too!”
“Can you not freak out in my face?” said Erica, snarling at the Green Girls.
“But it’s opening night! I’m gonna die!”
“I know, me too!”
“Relax you guys! You’re not gonna screw up,” said Sarah reassuringly.
“Andrew might,” teased Karine. “You were good at the first dress but yesterday you totally screwed up two lines.”
“Oh, two lines, big deal. No one pays attention to what people say in Shakespeare anyway,” scoffed Andrew.
“Seriously,” agreed Erica. “Isn’t it kinda poseurish to do Shakespeare in high school? Like do any of you even understand what you’re saying?”
“Yeah,” said Cerise, Sarah and Karine all at once.
“But it’s not all intense Shakespeare like all forsooth and whatever. It’s like fun,” said Steph.
“Yeah, ‘cause there’s like fairies and stuff,” nodded Mel.
“Yeah and there’s a donkey,” said Steph.
“I prefer the term ass,” smirked Andrew.
They all laughed but Erica rolled her eyes. God, she was such a sourpuss. Why did Terry even hang out with her? Not that Cerise understood why Terry hung out with any of his friends. Steven was nice and Christina was actually pretty ok as well, even though she was obviously jealous of Cerise’s relationship with Terry. But Karine and Andrew and Erica were total jerks.
After they’d finished eating, Sarah excused herself to go work on the Earth day project and the Greens immediately stood up as well. Cerise turned to Terry and they kissed.
“See you later,” she said, following the Green Girls out of the caf.
Terry watched Cerise go and then turned back to the gang, only to see they were all eyeing him with either amusement or disdain. The disdain was from Erica, obviously.
“God, how much longer do we have to suffer through that fruit cocktail and all her little minions?” she snarled.
“Seriously, have you fucked her yet?” asked Andrew. “When you gonna move on?”
Terry simply glared at them silently.
Andrew grinned. “Not that I mind the Greens hanging around. They’re pretty cute. I’ve only done the threesome thing once before but those two bitches were totally lame. I need to try again. How much you wanna bet I nail Mel and Steph before the end of the year?”
“Oh yeah like that’s a huge challenge, Melanie Kannangara and Stephanie Guzman are total sluts. I mean they hang out with Marla Fitzpatrick, they prob’ly get all their ho-ing tips from her,” smirked Erica.
Christina stared down at her hands while Andrew promised to fuck the Green Girls at the upcoming cast party. Andrew nudged Terry and he nodded in agreement but couldn’t muster any enthusiasm for Andrew’s bet. Sure it’d be cool to hook up with two chicks at once but it was kinda dickly to be talking about it in front of Chrissy who still obviously wanted to be going out with Andrew, not that he’d ever made a commitment to her. Not that anyone ever did. Poor girl.
“Karine, what the fuck is with your hair? Are you trying to make a grunge statement?” asked Erica.
Karine had been pulling her hair over her face all during lunch, which was admittedly pretty weird. Erica reached over and yanked the hair back, revealing a barely perceptible pimple on Karine’s forehead. The bitch-ass-whore erupted into hysterical laughter.
“Oh my god! No wonder! Fucking hell, Karine. That is the hugest zit I have ever seen in my life. Oh my god! And on your opening night? That is just so unfortunate. You realize of course that you look disgusting. I mean, that thing is oozing pus, seriously, stay away.”
God, what a bitch. Like Erica had never had a zit. Karine pointed out as much.
“If I did I wouldn’t come to school and like, display my horror to the world!”
“Gimme a break, Erica,” said Terry. “That’s what you do everyday. You think we enjoy looking at that fat ass all the time?”
Christina tried to stifle her laughter but Andrew, Karine and Steve all chuckled openly.
“Oh whatever, Terry. You wish you could have a piece of ass as fine as mine. Don’t get all bitchy with me just because you’re stuck with that cherry flavoured lollypop.”
Terry laughed. “Are you delusional? I would rather chew glass than go anywhere near your cottage cheese ass. If you were literally the last woman on Earth I would just be like celibate and use you as a food source for the rest of eternity ‘cause god knows your endless blubber would last long enough.”
“Hah!” howled Andrew. “That was totally YouTube worthy!”
“Fuck you, Terry,” snarled Erica.
“I’ve already told you, Erica. Never gonna happen.”
All that preparing he’d done for the debates in MRE had really helped Terry polish up his speechifying skills. He’d been practising that rant for a while but was confident that it had come across as spontaneous. It felt awesome to take down Erica, that stupid bitch. He only wished Cerise had been around to witness it.
was hot too in her evil dimension,” mused Willy as the boys sat down at their wall. “And Willow was hot when she went evil in the normal Buffyverse too.” Willow
“God, enough with your evil equals hot obsession,” sighed Jay. “Can we fucking move on?”
Cerise emerged from student union holding another Earth day poster. She put it on the wall with a deliberate flourish, eyeing the boys, practically daring them to mess with her. She looked at Karl and cocked an eyebrow.
“As if we’re gonna do something as lame as deface another poster,” said Karl. “We’re way beyond that. This is war!”
She sighed. “I don’t wanna fight with you guys.”
“Then why’d you switch sides?!” whined Willy.
“Oh for… gimme… I didn’t switch sides.” She rolled her eyes. “I’m still friends with you guys. You know, putting Vani on the wall actually worked out well for you guys. You’re a legend now!”
“I know! It’s awesome!” exclaimed Vani.
“So can’t we be cool now?”
“It’s not about Vani’s questionable social status,” insisted Karl. “You’ve become a joiner, Cerise. You’ve gone Green!”
“So the hell what?” she asked in exasperation.
“Seriously!” agreed Jay. “It’s no big deal. It’s cool. We’re all friends!”
“Let’s all hold hand, guys. Come on, kumbaya,” said Vani, moving back and forth with the rhythm one could only assume always existed in his head.
Cerise crouched down in front of the boys. “Come to the play tonight.”
You could kind of see down Cerise’s shirt when she leaned in front of them like that and Willy had obviously noticed. Jay wished Cerise would wise up and straighten her shirt.
“Clearly you understand nothing,” said Karl condescendingly. “The school play is a school sanctioned activity that we cannot…”
“Oh get over it!” Cerise scoffed. “Seriously, Karl, grow up! It’s gonna be fun. All you have to do is sit there and watch Karine Cavalière wear a bikini.”
Jay’s eyes widened, which apparently Cerise hadn’t missed.
“Yes, Jay. She wears a bikini. That’s her costume. All the fairies wear bathing suits. And Sarah wears a dress that’s practically see-through.” She stared at Karl with a sly smile.
Karl’s eyes shifted and he shrugged defiantly.
“It’ll be fun,” she went on. “If it sucks you can throw tomatoes at us. Except don’t do that ‘cause that wouldn’t be funny.”
“It would be hilarious!” laughed Vani. “Man, you’re so much better at evilness than us.”
“Do you wear a bikini?” Willy asked, all leering and sick.
“No, I’m not a fairy,” she said, clearly grossed out by Willy’s question.
“I say we go,” said Jay.
He and Vani and Willy all looked at Karl pleadingly.
He sighed and rolled his eyes. “Fine!”
“Awesome,” Cerise giggled, pulling tickets out of her pocket. “Ten bucks each.”
“We have to pay?” screeched Karl.
“Yes, now pay up!” she yelled.
The boys all reached for their wallets and handed over the cash obediently.
It was Wendy’s voice. Shauna kept her head down and kept nibbling her sandwich. She was sitting in front of her locker and drew her knees up to her chest, tucking her arms close to her body.
“Heard you got a lesson in safety on the ski trip,” snickered Mike.
“Yeah! Loser!” cackled Ben, his foot flying out to strike Shauna’s shoulder.
She dropped her sandwich and it fell into her lap. The Glue sniffers laughed and went on their way.
Shauna looked up. Sarah Wong stared down at her with sympathy. Shauna shrugged and picked up the disassembled sandwich, stuffing the fragments into her mouth.
“So uh,” Sarah went on. “You know the play? The school play? It opens tonight. A Midsummer Night’s Dream? You wanna buy a ticket?”
Shauna stared up at Sarah and continued chewing her food.
“Cerise is gonna be in it,” said Sarah. “It’s ten dollars.”
Shauna dug her hand into the cargo pocket of her pants. She fished out some bills and random change. Sarah rifled through the money in Shauna’s hand, picking out a five, two toonies and a loonie. She replaced the money with a ticket.
“Thanks!” Sarah got up and pranced down the hall. Shauna stuffed the ticket into her pocket and sipped on her grape juice box.