This was the greatest beginning to the season I could have asked for! Not only did I make section leader, we were doing great and it was only the first day. What more could we want?
Once Callahan was done announcing the section leaders, we were all told to go to his office along with the guard captain and drum majors. The office was a little small for all of these people, but it worked. Callahan was the last to enter the office. Once he shut the door and squeezed his way to his desk, he turned to us.
"Well congratulations," he said, "You are all leaders in this band. It's not just the drum majors, you're all important. Section leaders, you are responsible for just that, your sections. If someone in your section is struggling. If you have freshmen in your section, which most of you do, make sure they're getting everything. If there's a part in the music that needs worked out, schedule a sectional outside of rehearsal to work it out together. Overall, just take responsibility. You are the ones who are going to be asked the most questions."
We all nodded in understanding. It was an important job and it was important not to let it go to your head, but we were still excited and none of us could deny it. Looking around, I couldn't see too many of these people getting a big head. Callahan had made a good selection this year. Usually at least half of the section leaders had a big head to begin with, but it appeared Callahan had chosen to avoid that this year.
When the meeting with Callahan was over, I got my trumpet, and went out to the parking lot. I saw Cornell waiting for me by my car and I smiled and waved at him. He had no reaction; instead he stared sourly off into space.
"Hey," I said once I reached him.
"Want to come over? I need a ride home and you can hang around if you want," he said in an emotionless voice.
"Sure, I'll just call Trenton on the way," I said brightly.
We got in my car and I pulled out my phone and dialed Trenton's number before I pulled out of the parking lot. It rang three times before he picked up. It was just after 5:00 and he would have just gotten off work.
"Hey, Trenton, I'm going to Cornell's, ok?"
There was a pause before I heard him sigh, "Ok."
Trenton didn't really like Cornell, but he wasn't going to flat out say I couldn't date him. He said he wanted me to make my own mistakes. I didn't really like the way he put it, but I got to date Cornell, so I win, right?
Once I hung up the phone, we were almost to Cornell's house. The neighborhood was one of those gated ritzy ones where all of the houses look the same. All of these houses were enormous. It was rather intimidating, actually. I pulled into Cornell's driveway and he got out right away. I followed him into the house quickly.
Cornell lived with his mom and her boyfriend. His parents had gotten divorced about two years ago and she had gotten nearly everything. His dad had moved out to California and Cornell only saw him for a couple weeks over the summer. Not that Cornell minded, his dad was a workaholic and he rarely saw him before the divorce anyway.
The house was silent. We walked into the kitchen and saw a note on the refrigerator. Cornell pulled it off and read it, not letting me see.
"What's it say?" I asked when he put the note down.
"She and her boyfriend went out to dinner," he said, "So I guess you won't eat until you go home."
"Well, I'm not hungry and I don't really feel like making anything right now."
I rolled my eyes, but didn't argue. People asked me all the time why I stayed with Cornell. Sometimes I even wondered that myself, to be honest. He really could be sweet when he tried, not that anyone ever believed me. Also, I had to admit, I felt sorry for him. He didn't have the best home life, considering he had almost zero relationship with his parents. I felt bad doing something that would make things worse.
Cornell led me down to the basement, which served as his personal game room. There was a big screen TV and a fancy sound system. Not to mention, he had every gaming system known to man and every game you could possibly imagine. Not that this mattered to me, I rarely got to play. Cornell preferred playing alone. Sometimes for fifteen minutes, sometimes for hours on end. It made me wonder why he even invited me over.
After over and hour of watching him play his games, I told him I had to go home. In reality, I was just bored and hungry. He waved goodbye, but didn't seem too effected.
I left his house and drove back to my house. When I walked inside, I found Trenton in the kitchen cleaning up after dinner. He gave me an odd look as I began digging through the refrigerator looking for something to eat.
"Didn't they feed you over there?" He asked.
I sighed, "No, his mom and her boyfriend went out and Cornell isn't much of a cook."
Even though I wasn't looking at him, I knew Trenton was rolling his eyes. He always got this way about Cornell, no matter what the issue. There was a reason I rarely brought Cornell over. He came over for dinner once and not only did Trenton not like Cornell, but Cornell didn't like Trenton. They rubbed each other the wrong way on every level. Trenton thought I could do better, I suppose. As for Cornell, he just hated anyone authoritative.
After I found myself some dinner, I went upstairs and took a shower and then I went to my room. I could hear Rachel squealing on the other side of the wall. There was rarely a peaceful moment around this house, I could only imagine what would happen when they had more kids.
I spent a lot of the night texting Lydia. Things quieted down a lot once Benni put Rachel to bed around 8:00. Not long after that, there was a knock at my door.
"Come in," I said from my desk chair.
The door opened and Trenton walked in, "So how was your first day?"
"Great, actually," I smiled broadly, "I got section leader!"
"I knew you could!"
"We got so much done today, it was unbelievable," I told him, "And we'll do more tomorrow, everything is going so well!"
He smiled, "That's good. What'd you do after band then, since you didn't eat dinner?"
"Nothing much," I said, looking down at my phone as Lydia sent me another text.
"Is that him?" Trenton asked, almost masking the disdain in his voice.
"No, it's Lydia."
He nodded, "Well, I need some sleep. Don't stay up too late; you don't want to run late again tomorrow."
I nodded and we told each other goodnight. I texted Lydia for a little longer before the two of us said goodnight as well. I turned off my light and crawled into bed. It had been a long day, and it wasn't long before I drifted off to sleep.
I was in a dimly lit room. I felt so small. So vulnerable. Then there she was, tall and intimidating, raising her hand to strike. I felt it collide with my face.
Then I was facing into the corner. I could hear her walking around behind me. Suddenly, there was a sound of ripping fabric and a searing pain at my shoulder. I could feel something sticky running down my back. I was scared. So scared.
Then there was screaming. Filling my ears. I couldn't escape it, I didn't know where it was coming from. Then came the voice.
My eyes shot open. The lights were on and Trenton was standing over me, looking terrified and wearing only his pajama pants. My throat was soar. I was the one screaming.
"I- I'm sorry…" I stuttered, trying to catch my breath.
"Are you okay?"
"I'm fine, I'm fine," I assured him.
"Tanya, I thought you said you stopped having nightmares," Trenton pressed.
"Trent, it's fine, it happens," I told him again, "You can't tell me you don't sometimes have them now."
He paused for a moment before whispering, "They were never as bad as yours, and I think you know that."
There was a knock on the already open door. Benni walked in holding Rachel on her hip. Tears were running down the little girl's face.
"See sweetie," Benni said to her daughter, "Everything's okay."
"Tanya was scweaming…" Rachel mumbled.
"I'm okay, Rachel," I assured her, "Just let your mommy put you to bed, everything's alright, I promise."
Rachel nodded and Benni smiled at me gratefully as they left my room. Trenton smiled at me as well, "Thanks for that."
"I just want to feel like you're okay," he said.
"I don't think either of us will ever be completely okay," I whispered.
He nodded, "Why don't we both go back to sleep? You have another day of band camp tomorrow and I have to work, alright? I think Benni probably has Rachel back in bed by now."
I agreed and he left my room, shutting the door behind him. I turned my light off, but it was quite a while before I went back to sleep.
A/N: Thanks to those who read the first chapter. If you like it or even if you don't, please review. Positive comments are great but so is any constructive critisism you have to offer! Please and thank you!