Posted: January 19, 2008

Chapter Four: Lie to Me

It was Monday morning as Brad walked through the halls of his high school with his best friend, Shawn Ruiz, who was a fellow teammate with Brad on the football team. Shawn was Hispanic, with dark wavy brown locks and deep forest green eyes, which Brad would never admit he was jealous of because of the girls that fawned over him just so he would look at them. "So how did you get the black eye?" Brad asked as he noticed the shiner his friend was sporting.

Shawn looked a little hesitant before he answered. "I uh- I was tossing the pigskin around with my little brother, he's looking to try out for the team next year, so I told him I would help him out," he explained. "Things were going well until I got distracted and the damn thing caught me in the eye." Brad began to laugh. "Ha ha ha, laugh it up." Shawn rolled his eyes.

"I'm just playing with you, bro." Brad gave him a pat on the back, which caused Shawn to flinch. The gesture went unnoticed by the blonde. "So is that why you didn't make it Friday?" he asked.

"No, that wasn't it. Something else came up and I couldn't make it. Should have given you the head's up, but you know how things go." Brad nodded indicating that he understood. "So how was it anyway? To college parties live up to the hype?"

Brad shrugged. "In a way, it does," he admitted.

"And the girls?" Shawn had to know.

Brad cocked an eyebrow in his directions. "Now why are you asking about girls?" he asked of him. "Because from what I seen, Jessica has had you whipped for the last year and a half."

"I'm not whipped!" Shawn defended herself. "Jess is a little aggressive, I'll admit that, but there's no chick I can't handle," he made clear. "When it comes to me and Jess, believe me, baby girl knows her place. I wear the pants in our relationship." He demonstrated by pulling up his bagging jeans as they walked. "I'm the Big Kahuna and she knows that once I put my foot down, it's all-"

"Hey, Jessica!" Brad cried out as he waved.

"What? Where?" Shawn jumped as his girlfriend came walking towards them. "Hi- hi, honey!" he said nervously, hoping she hadn't heard his rant.

"Shawn," his name, escaping from her pink lips was short and sharp. "Meet me today, in the courtyard, ten after three. Don't be late. Got it?" she asked and Shawn nodded. "Good." She smiled. "Kissy." She tilted her head up so Shawn could lean down and give her a quick kiss. She then patted him on the chest as she said, "Good boy," before walking pass him towards her class.

"So," Brad drawled as he didn't even try to hide his smile, "Mr. Kahuna-"

"Shut up!" Shawn cut him off as they once again headed towards their lockers and as they did, Brad noticed a couple of familiar faces in the crowd.

"You told me all you wanted to be was friends and I respected that," Spud whispered to Trixie as they stood at their own lockers. "So don't get all high and mighty on me because I got with someone else."

"I just don't want to see you hurt. After your break up with Stacy you've been vulnerable. Come on, Spud, just because you sleep with some college girl doesn't mean she cares about you," she voiced her concerns.

"Well, I guess you would know a lot about that, huh?" Spud asked and as he watched Trixie gasp, her eyes growing wide, he instantly regretted his words, but he wouldn't take them back, he had a point to make. And as he slammed his locker shut and stormed off to class with Trixie softly calling him name in his wake, he hoped he had made it.

"He's an ass," Brad found himself saying, what he knew Trixie was thinking, before he could stop himself. Trixie quickly turned in his direction, now just noticing his presence. And as they looked into each other's eyes neither said nothing, causing Shawn to look curiously between the two, before he cleared his throat, which brought the two out of their trance.

"You have a part to play, Brad," she threw his words back at him, "so play it. Now get out of my way." She advised before walking towards of first class of the day.

Brad sighed as he watched her walk away. "What was that?" Shawn asked, knowing he had missed something.

"Nothing." Brad shook his head.

"You're lying to me." He knew.

"She was at the party I went to," he began as the two finally made it to their lockers. "She was ditched, so I gave her a ride."

"Really?" Shawn grinned from ear to ear. "So tell me, how was she?"

Brad made an annoyed sound as he looked to his friend and swung the door of his locker opened. "Not that kind of ride!"

The green eyed boy shrugged as he opened his locker. "I'm just saying, you know the girl's kind of loose."

"What?" Brad looked at him in disbelief.

"Come on, Brad, where have you been? After that thing with Wilkins last semester, girl has been busy. Ask Jenkins."

"Jenkins, from the basketball team?" Shawn nodded, Brad then threw his head back and laughed. "Jenkins is a joke. I wouldn't give anything he says a second thought. He's just starting rumors because of the way she turned him down back in sophomore year." He grabbed the books he needed for his next two classes and closed his locker.

"Fine, whatever," Shawn gave up as he too closed his locker and adjusted the strap of his backpack. "So what happen when you dropped her off at her place?" he asked, wondering why she had been so cold to him.

"Actually," he began slowly, already knowing that Shawn was going to take his next statement the wrong way. "We didn't get to her place until the next morning. She kind of spent the night at my place."

"Your dad still working that case upstate?" he asked not looking at him.

"Yeah," Brad answered.

"So it was just you and her all night?"

"Yeah."

"And nothing happened?" He then turned his head towards the other looking for any tale-tale signs that he was lying.

"Not a thing," Brad admitted.

Shawn then studied him carefully. He then placed a hand on his friend's shoulder as he lowered his head before shaking it side to side. "At this rate, you're never going to get laid."

Brad shook off Shawn's hand. "Thanks for your vote of confidence."

"No problem," Shawn said cheerfully as the bell rung. "Shit, I'm going to be late. I'll catch you at practice, alright?" he said as he began to back up before he turned around and headed quickly to his class.

Brad turned the corner as his first class was the first door on the right. He stepped inside where the other students around him were still settling down as the teacher hadn't arrived yet. Dr. Darlin, or Dr. D as they like to call him, was a bit of a flake in the morning and always arrived several minutes late and always with a cup of coffee in his hand. But once he had gotten about halfway through his cup, which always seem to be about the last twenty minutes of the period, that's when their class really began. And once he was fully awake, he was no pushover. His class was one of the hardest Senior courses and Brad was determined to do his best in it.

Brad sat at his assigned seat, which was located behind Trixie's. Most days they always made a point to annoy the other, other days there was witty banter, but never had there been full out silence as there was today. Something had changed and he wasn't quite sure what it was or if he liked it. "Trixie," he finally spoke, leaning on his desk towards her to be heard over the others, but she ignored him. "Look at me!" he demanded in a harsh whisper.

"You've made it very clear, that I'm not good enough to be your friend," she told him with her back to him. "So step off," she asked of him.

"Fine," he agreed before leaning back into his chair, where he crossed and his arms over his chest and started angrily at the back of her head.

Then, as predicted, after Dr. D came into the classroom, he began his lesson twenty minutes before the period was over. He cleared his throat and the talking among his students ceased. He put down his coffee and stood up before walking to the other side of his desk and leaned against it. "You," he pointed to one of his students, sitting in the second row to his left. "What is a lie?" he asked. "What is lying?"

The student sat up straight, before clearing his throat. "The absence of truth?" It came out sounding more like a question. "Lying is making someone believe something that isn't real," he said more confidently. "Lying is wrong," he concluded.

Dr. D nodded his head to agree, but then looked back to the same student. "Thank you, Mr. Diknoka." He then looked to the rest of his class. "So tell me, is lyingalways wrong?" He threw out.

"Yes," Trixie spoke out. "Lying can hurt people."

Dr. D went to reply, but found he was cut off by another one of his students as he went to open his mouth. "But so can the truth," Brad found himself saying.

Trixie exhaled before she responded to the boy behind her without turning around. "If the truth is so devastating, then why postpone it?" she asked. "It's better to lay everything out on the table, to face it head on. To deal with it and then get past it," she reasoned.

"But what if the truth is something you know someone won't be able to get past? Why subject someone to that?" Brad countered. "I mean, what if a lie is made to protect?"

"And who are you to know what someone is capable of handling?" she spoke softly, "How can you, when you don't given them a chance to try?" Trixie looked down as she seem to take great interest in her hands for a moment.

"Then how would you categorize a secret, which is nothing, but a cousin to the lie?" Brad's brow furrowed as he continued to speak. "Haven't you ever told anyone a sec-" he paused his forehead once again relaxing. "No, better yet," he began to correct himself. "Haven't you ever been told a secret and had to keep it safe, in fear of what would happen if that secret ever got out?"

For a span of a heartbeat, Trixie froze, Brad's question immediately bringing imagines of one of her best friends and how she had promised to keep his secret of who he was and the magical world that around them.

Brad, seeing that Trixie wasn't going to reply, gave his conclusion. "See?" he spoke. "Sometimes a lie is wrong," he leaned over a little bit as Trixie began to turn her head towards him, "and sometimes you lie for the right reasons."

"Very well put, Mr. Morton." Dr. D looked very pleased about the debate that had transpired. Brad slightly jumped as Dr. D's voice seem to boom and as he remembered that he was actually in a classroom. Brad then finally leaned back in his chair and slightly groaned as he heard that he and the rest of the class were going to be assigned a paper to write. But then his ears perked up in interest as he realized there was no word or page minimal and as long as the paper expressed clearly want the writer was trying to get across then it would be accepted for grading. Brad frowned slightly, not really sure if a non-minimal paper was a good thing. It kind of sounded like a trap to him.

Before long, class was over and Brad grabbed his things and stood up. He was going to head towards the door, but found himself pausing at Trixie's desk as as she sat there. "How's that for a dumb jock?" he said in a whispered before continuing on.

Offended, Trixie quickly grabbed her book and dashed after Brad. When she caught up with him she took a hold of his shoulder, forcing him to turn around. "Are you still on that?" she asked angrily. "I told you I didn't think that and it was the truth. I wouldn't have said it if it weren't, because I don't like you enough to spare your feelings." Her breathing was slightly heavy.

Brad averted his eyes before they landed on the girl in front of him. He then shrugged. "Maybe," he began. "Just maybe. I over reacted."

"You think?" She looked irritated as she placed her hand on her hip. She then exhaled as she lowered it again. "Look," she looked a bit shy now. "You did something nice for me and I appreciate it. That's all the other day was, okay?"

Brad finally nodded. "Yeah. It's just, you and I have never been close, mostly because, I don't like Jake," he got straight to the point. "And I've never had a reason, not to like you, except for him," he explained, when all of a sudden Trixie began to laugh. Brad looked at her curiously. "Did I miss something?" he asked.

"Oh, it's nothing." She shook her head, her face bright with her smile. "For a second there, it kind of sounded like you were saying you like me."

Brad looked a little thrown off by the comment before he scoffed. "Please," he recovered. "If anyone liked anyone, you would so like me first before I liked you."

"Oh, really?" she challenged.

"Yes, really. I mean, look at me." He flexed his arm and a group of girls walking by giggled cutely as they passed by. Brad turned to them and gave a wink to one. "Hey there sweetie."

"Hi, Brad." She swept her blond hair behind her ear. "So when's the first game? You're still quarterback, right?" she asked.

"Of course. And Co-captain this year too," he let be known and she stepped in a little closer as she congratulated him. "Thank you," he replied.

"You're welcome. And I'm sure with you at the head of the team, the school will go undefeated this year." Trixie shook her head and rolled her eyes as she went completely ignored.

"No question about it," he confirmed confidently, before one of the girls behind her reminded her that they all had somewhere to be, and so she waved goodbye and disappeared in the crowd as Brad finally turned back to Trixie. "See all the ladies want me. I'm the All American Boy."

"Whatever." Trixie pushed passed him and began walking towards her next class.

"Come on," he quickly caught up with her, putting his arm around her shoulder as he did so. "Let me prove to you, that you want me."

Trixie threw her head back and laughed. "You're so arrogant."

"I try." He returned her smile.

"Trixie." Trixie and Brad turned to find Spud standing behind them. Trixie took Brad's hand and moved it off her shoulder. "About earlier, I didn't mean-" he stopped as if he finally noticed Brad beside one of his best friends. "Can we go talk somewhere?"

"Yeah," she murmured as she walked over to him. She then turned around as continued on with Spud. "Later, okay?"

Brad nodded to her before shaking his head in totally disbelief as he watched the two turn the corner.

To Be Continued. . .