The companion to A Slow Descent, let's hope you've read that by the third part here.
Motivation is a funny thing. A threat to your life, large sums of money, a hot dog with the works, these are all very good motivators. Preserving a sense of normalcy without reason, not as much. Not anymore. This is what I realized that morning, just about a year ago now. David and Jalil had already been sent off to the funny farm and these are two people that I consider to be very levelheaded, smart guys. So, if they couldn't handle this, I realized, what the hell was I trying so hard for? It wasn't like I was doing so fantastically as it was. I was only me, no one expected much to begin with. Everything was falling apart and there was no way I'd be the one to hold it together. Forget that.
So, I grabbed a bottle of something, something strong, didn't matter what, and went back to bed. Curled up with my alcohol at seven in the morning and listened to my parents getting ready for work below me. Half an hour and half a bottle later I was well on my way to a really lovely sort of day, when my dad yelled up the stairs.
"Christopher?" I pulled the covers off of my head.
"Go to school!" Right, sure. Then the front door slammed and the house was quiet. Now, I'm not entirely sure what the wise sort of thing to do would have been, but it definitely was not the following. I crawled out of bed, chugged the rest of the bottle, and drove myself over to the school. Always do exactly what daddy says. That's very important, very important. Too bad I was already late. Too bad I didn't care.
Now, when you're late to school, you're supposed to go down to the office and talk to Mrs. Durnham, the secretary. She'll give you a note that says you're allowed into class or whatever, but the office was all the way on the other side of the building and I really didn't feel like schlepping all the way over there. Schlep, now there's a funny word.
"Hey! Mrs. Durnham! I'm late!" My voice bounced off the metal lockers, echoed down the halls.
"Do you hear me?" I dropped my books on the floor and cupped my hands around my mouth, put on my best macho guy voice. "Hitchcock to Durnham, I am late, repeat, I am late. Please respond. Over." Nothing. What was wrong with her? I dropped my hands, screaming now.
"Hey! I know you can hear me and I am not schlep, schlep, schlepping all the way over to the freaking office just so you can tell me to get my ass to class!" A few doors opened after that one. Teachers stuck their heads out. A few approached me slowly, like I might've had a gun or something, so I put my hands up.
"I'm innocent, I swear!" Two of them grabbed an arm each and tried to lead me down the hall.
"We'll see about that Mr. Hitchcock." Guy on my right, sophomore history.
"Honestly, I've been f-f-framed," I emphasized with spit, made sure to look at the guy when I was talking to him. Man, was I on a roll now. Unfortunately they didn't let me defend myself to the judge, I mean principle. He marched right out of his office and handed me the proverbial pink slip. And can you believe the guy actually apologized! Like someone else made him do it. Yea, right.
I was supposed to wait in the nurse's office while they called my parents, but here's the thing; they left the door open. They left me alone in that room, with the door open. Hello. I got up and strolled right out to the parking lot. They should really tighten up security around here. I sat in the car a few minutes, knowing I definitely couldn't go home. Maybe I could go to the hospital, visit my crazy pals. Or not. I started the car up. There are better ways of doing some things. Put it in drive. Sometimes, you just have to wait for the answer to come to you. I turned that car around and floored it, over the grass, through the flowers. The glass and metal and brick of the entrance loomed up fast in front of me. Motivation, my friends, is a very funny thing.
A/N: Well, I guess that's the end, sort of. While writing these, the characters felt right to me (I hope to you to) but something elseseemed off. I finally realized that Ms. Applegate didn't write many scenes of the characters in the real world, so putting them there and leaving them there for the entire duration was kind of out of sync. Oh well, I hope you had as much fun reading as I did writing. Let me know if you did.