Tuesday, June 21, 2011
“Yes I can!”
“No you can’t!”
“Yes I can!” I insisted vehemently.
“Oh really? Then I dare you.”
I rolled my eyes and made an impatient sound. “I am the most popular girl in school; I can do anything I want.”
“So then you accept my dare?”
I wanted to claw Valerie’s eyes out for challenging me like this. She was only the second most popular girl in school, but still… she could get enough votes to be made homecoming queen…
“Of course, and it won’t even be hard,” I bragged.
“Good! Then you have to get her to embarrass herself in front of the whole school, or you have to decline if you are made homecoming queen.”
Damn! She knew what buttons to push to piss me off! “What do I get if I win?”
“It’s a dare; you either do it, or I win,” Valerie replied smugly, flipping her blond hair over her shoulder. Technically, she’s right.
“Fine, no problem. I’ll do it, and I’ll be made homecoming queen!” I sneered.
“You have until midnight the night of the homecoming dance,” Valerie added, looking as if she were being generous. “That way, if you are elected queen, you’ll only get to enjoy it for a couple of hours.”
“Whatever,” I held my hand up in front of her to indicate that I was done discussing the matter. I walked away. “Later!”
Valerie and I were best friends. Not the kind of best friends who would share each other’s tooth brush and take a bullet if necessary, but the kind of best friends that talked to each other on the phone for hours on end and bickered at least as often as we didn’t. The kind of best friends that broke up every five minutes, and then got back together again a second later.
It was only natural for Valerie to dare me to do this. She knew it was the only way she would get the crown. Don’t tell her I thought this, but I don’t think anyone would vote for her because she’s not “nice” like I am. She’s bitchy, and has no patience for the unpopular.
I thought of them as the unfortunate people who needed my charity and goodwill. I often volunteered to help out the poor, animals, and unpopular people in my spare time. I had this election in the bag!
“Hey Mya!” A football player in uniform called out to me as we passed each other in the hall.
“Have a good practice,” I smiled at him and waved.
“Hey Mya!” A boy in my math class greeted. He’d let me read his notes when I couldn’t figure out what mine said.
“Hi,” I smiled and kept walking.
“Hi Mya,” a girl said shyly.
I had no idea who she was, but smiling cost me nothing, and I loved to do it. I smiled at her, and waved. Oh yeah! I had this homecoming thing in the bag!
Then I spotted her. I stopped, leaned against the wall, and studied her carefully. River, the girl I had just been dared to have embarrass herself, or give up my crown.
No way in hell I was going to give up my crown! I would give up on being cheer captain or purposely allow someone to break my arm first! I will be homecoming queen if I have to embarrass every girl in this whole damn school!
I fiddled with my reddish auburn hair, and wondered how to accomplish my task. River was smart. Possibly the smartest girl in the entire school, and I had to work hard if I wanted to trick her into anything.
Then it hit me! I knew exactly what to do. I am brilliant!
“Hey River,” I smiled as I gained her attention. “My parents want me to find a tutor to help with my writing skills. They’ll pay you.”
It was actually true too! I was killing two birds with one stone here. I felt like patting myself on the back.
“How much?” River wondered. I rather got the feeling that she wasn’t going to accept unless I offered her a LOT of money. What would she consider a lot?
“$25.00 an hour,” I stated.
“25!” River gaped. Good, I’d found a high enough amount to entice her that my parents would actually be willing to pay.
“Yes. They insist that I hire the best tutor, and they know that the best costs money. Anything less, and they may as well not even bother.” I shrugged, and you know what? My parents actually did feel that way. I never had anything less than the best.
I could see River debating my offer, and held my breath patiently. If I raised my offer now, she’d only get suspicious. I had to play this cool, like I didn’t care either way.
“Ok, when?” River finally answered.
“Every night from 7 to 8?” I suggested. The only thing I had going on most nights from 7-8 was talking on the phone with Valerie, and I knew that she would probably welcome the excuse for a break too.
“That would work...” River nodded slowly.
“Good, see you tonight!” I waved as I walked away. I knew she had bravely come to my house for my birthday party last May, so I didn’t bother to tell her where I lived.
That night, River showed up exactly at 7, and I brought her to my room. This would be the first time the two of us had ever talked – beyond saying hi and our earlier conversation – and I hoped she had something interesting to say. Otherwise I was going to be very bored.
On the way, I stopped by my parents’ joint office. I still found it strange that they shared an office and conducted their separate business in the relative noisiness of a smallish space, but they insisted that it helped them remain close. Whatever.
“Mom, Dad? This is River, my new tutor,” I introduced.
“Right!” My dad smiled enthusiastically. “And how much did I agree to pay her again?”
“$25.00 an hour,” I stated. Then I smiled expectantly, knowing that he wouldn’t argue now, even if he wanted to. He didn’t like to look stupid in front of anyone. Thankfully, he did not find this amount high at all.
“Are you planning to come over the whole week?” My father asked River. He double checked that it was Tuesday.
“Yes sir,” River answered politely.
“Here’s a hundred dollars then. You let me know if she needs tutoring beyond that.” He handed River five 20’s and she stared at the money in shock as I ushered her out the door. I heard him mutter to my mother, “I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Mya needed more tutoring.”
I stopped, glared at him, but didn’t want to start an argument now when I had to come up with a plan to make River embarrass herself in front of the entire school. I shook off my ire, and continued to lead River to my room. It was on the other side of the house so that my parents didn’t have to put up with any noise I made.
I decided that the best way to start was to gain her trust, and to do that, I had to pay attention, and actually let her tutor me. I plopped into my favorite chair, and invited her to sit in the chair next to me. We pulled out our homework, and River asked to see what I’d already done.
I listened as she explained the lesson, and was amazed that I even asked her questions about previous lessons that I hadn’t grasped. She soon had me understanding grammar! Maybe this tutoring thing wasn’t such a bad idea after all.
I promised to work quietly on my paper for a bit, and glanced at the clock. It was still 15 minutes until 8 o’clock, and I wondered if I was going to have to work harder to gain her trust. How could I test it?
“River? Do you have anything I could help you with?” I asked. If I had even a little of her trust, she would come up with something, but if she didn’t trust me at all she would deny it, and that would be that. For now.
“What do you mean?” She asked.
“You know... There must be something I’m good at that you wish you could do. Cheerlead... dance... something?”
River bit her lip in indecision, and then decided to take a risk. “I... I’m no good... with boys. I don’t know how to talk to them, and I’m afraid that I’ll be a terrible kisser.”
“You’ve never kissed a boy before?!” How was this possible? I had my first kiss at 12!
“No,” Raven admitted as she examined my carpet.
“Well, boys are easy, and kissing is no big deal,” I assured her. “You just have to tell a boy what he wants to hear, and pretend to be interested in whatever he has to say. If you do that, and give him encouragement, he’ll want to kiss you. In my experience, most boys don’t know how to kiss until I teach them, so they wouldn’t know a bad kisser anyway.”
“You make it sound so easy, but it’s not,” River protested.
“Sure it is, here; I’ll talk about something I like, and you listen. Even if you’re bored, smile and nod. Repeat the main points. For example, if I tell you I found a cute pair of shoes, ask what brand or if they came in your size. Things like that.”
I started to talk about my yoga classes, and was surprised when she managed to act interested and entertained. She even went so far as to have me show her a couple of yoga poses. I demonstrated, and then helped her try them.
“See! It’s easy,” I smiled at her encouragingly.
“Well it is with you. I’ve always wanted to try yoga, but boys are going to talk about cars, and... and I don’t know, girls?” River tucked a strand of her brown hair behind her ear nervously.
“Yes,” I agreed. “Cars, football, other horribly boring topics... but don’t worry! You won’t be expected to remember any of it, and they’ll gladly tell you the same things over and over if you’re willing to listen.”
“But... but... what about kissing? Are you sure a boy wouldn’t know how bad I am?”
I was just going to have to set her mind at ease. It wasn’t particularly a pleasant thought, but I was just going to have to do it. It was the only way I would get what I wanted.
“If you’re that nervous, then let me teach you. I guarantee that you won’t be nervous anymore after I’ve taught you all I know about kissing,” I bragged mildly.
“Teach me...? How?” River asked, and I could tell that she was such an innocent. It was kind of cute in an annoying because I had to spell it out for her kind of way.
“Here,” I moved so that I was sitting in the same chair as her, and placed a hand on the back of her neck. “I’ll show you.”
I leaned into her, pressing my lips softly to hers. I had often been told that my lips were full and made for kissing, but hers were too. They were at least a full as mine, and maybe just a bit softer.
Of course, one kiss would never teach her anything, so I kissed her again. This time I pressed our lips together a bit more firmly, and let the kiss linger for 3 seconds. I pulled back to look at her.
“That’s how it’s done. Now, show me that you paid attention,” I ordered.
She blushed, and stammered, but finally she made up her mind, and obeyed. She gave me a quick peck on the lips, and I frowned. She noticed my frown because she pressed her lips to mine a bit too hard, and I had to back away.
“Softly, gently...” I reminded her, and demonstrated again. This kiss was perfect, if I did say so myself!
I separated our lips, and waited for her to try again. She leaned into me slowly, and pressed her lips to mine in a much more relaxed manner. Finally! We were getting somewhere!
I had her practice the basic closed mouth kisses several times, showing how to vary them by slightly opening her mouth to kiss just the top or bottom lip as an alternative to kissing both lips at the same time. We were both concentrating on kissing so completely that we were startled when the clock chimed 8. I laughed to break the sudden tension.
“Well, you’ve got a good grasp on the basics,” I informed her. “If you still don’t think you’re good enough to kiss a boy tomorrow, then I’ll just have to show you a few more tricks. After we’ve gone through our assignment, of course.”
“I think I... might be good enough to kiss a boy. Maybe. Aren’t I?” River fidgeted.
“Of course you are! All you need is practice, and any boy will give you that!”
The next day, I made it through all of my classes and after school activities without thinking about River at all. I almost forgot that she was going to come over again. Then, Valerie asked me if I was making any progress on my dare, and I vowed all over again not to lose to her!
I greeted River cheerfully when she arrived, and led her on a detour through my kitchen to grab something to drink. I chose a bottle of Fiji water, and apologized for not having any pop or sugary drinks in the house. My mother absolutely would not allow them through the door. She insisted they were bad for my teeth, and I couldn’t exactly argue since without them my teeth were perfect, white, and never needed major dental work.
“I’ll take a bottle of water too,” River said, and I handed her one.
In my room, she conducted the tutoring as if that was the only thing in the world to do, and despite finding her explanations way easier to understand than my teacher’s, I still couldn’t help but get bored. I let my mind wander, and then chided myself for it. I needed to keep her attention and trust if I was going to get her to do what I wanted!
Finally, the lesson was over, and she checked my homework. I had done better because of her help last night, and so if nothing else, this was not a total loss. I made some notes about what to work on later when I was alone and had time to finish my homework.
“Can...” River started to ask, but then shook her head. “Nevermind.”
“What?” I wondered.
“Can we practice kissing some more? I... I have no one else to practice on.”
It’s for a good cause, I reminded myself. I need to win the dare to keep my crown. I smiled. “Of course.” However, I made her come to me this time. My favorite chair was way more comfortable anyway.
She kissed me hesitantly, shyly. I found myself kissing her just to show her how it was done. Then, she would try to imitate my kisses, and soon we both relaxed and just let it happen naturally. I remembered that I promised to show her more tricks, so I opened my mouth, and ran my tongue over her bottom lip.
She immediately repeated my action, and soon we were exploring each other’s mouth as if we’d be tested on it in class tomorrow. I noticed that she tasted different than a boy did. Sweeter, if that’s possible.
Neither of us noticed when the clock chimed 8, but that’s not to say that we kissed for hours. Around a quarter after, I remembered that she didn’t have the piece of anatomy I would normally start teasing right about now, and that made me come to my senses. I pulled away from her.
“I think that’s enough practice for tonight.”
“Right,” River agreed, blushing in embarrassment.
“See you tomorrow,” I stated, dismissing her.
She nodded, gathered her things, and said goodbye.
The next night, I realized that with her explaining things to me, I was actually able to do my assignment the right way before she came over, and that meant our session concluded rather more quickly than before. Oh great! I mentally sighed. That meant I might have to kiss her even more than I had last night.
I had thought about it often throughout the day, and I couldn’t figure out why. Was I dwelling on it because it was something I’d rather not do? Or was I obsessing over it because I liked it? I honestly wasn’t sure.
River looked at me curiously, but didn’t say anything. I guessed that she couldn’t bring herself to claim that she was a bad kisser, because she wasn’t anymore. I also guessed that she wanted to practice more, and debated ignoring the issue.
If I ignored her silent request, I might lose all of her trust that I had worked so hard to gain, but if I kissed her more... Well it was more effort that I was investing in this dare, and she had better embarrass herself big time! I’ll be so pissed if she doesn’t!
I tilted my head, beckoning her to come closer, and smiled encouragingly. She sat next to me, and we looked into each other’s eyes silently for a few moments. I gave in, and kissed her first.
We progressed to open-mouthed deep kisses pretty quickly, and I lost all thoughts but how to kiss her even better. I didn’t notice her unbutton my shirt, and free a breast from my bra until it was in her mouth. I moaned and leaned into her.
My hands decided that turnabout was fair play, and I unbuttoned her shirt too. I felt her discard her shirt completely, and busied myself unfastening her bra. I think her breasts are bigger than mine. I am going to have to examine them closely to find out for sure.
I fondled them, and kneaded them with my fingers. Yes, they do seem to be bigger. I looked at them very closely.
Her nipple seemed to darken, like it was asking me to suck on it. I thought, why not? I wrapped my lips around it, and sucked on it greedily.
She moaned, and the sound of it made me want to make her moan even more. I nibbled and licked her breasts until she decided that it was her turn, and then I floated up to the clouds as she did all of that to me. She knew how not to squeeze them the wrong way. Why can’t guys figure that out?
The clock started to chime, and I crashed from the clouds almost instantly. Oh my god! I was letting her suck on my nipples! When did that happen?!
“Um...” I interrupted her. “River?” I wanted so badly to stop this. I was very straight, damnit! Yet, I also wanted to find out what might happen next.
River looked at me, and maybe she saw my confusion, because she looked a bit sad. “Enough for tonight?”
I nodded. Mostly relieved. I threw on my robe as she got dressed, and then I awkwardly said goodbye.
All the next day in school I could not pay attention to anything. My teachers found it very unusual, and while I didn’t realize it at the time, I neglected to return anyone’s friendly greeting. I was agonizing over what might happen tonight!
Valerie cornered me just after I’d excused myself from afterschool cheer practice. She’d not talked on the phone with me much the last couple of days, and she’d heard people talking about me. She decided that something had to be wrong.
“Alright, tell me why you’re skipping out on practice,” she demanded.
“I don’t feel well,” I admitted. “I think I am going to be sick.”
“What kind of sick?” She wondered.
“The kind where I shouldn’t stray too far from the toilet,” I was only half lying. I really did feel nauseous, but that was because I couldn’t stop obsessing long enough to eat.
She sighed, deciding to give up out of sympathy. “Fine, call me later if you feel better. I want to know how things are going. Are you close to winning the dare?”
I suppressed a groan. That was the last thing I want to talk about at the moment. “Yeah. I’m pretty sure that I’ll have her ready to embarrass herself anytime now.”
“Really? What are you going to have her do?” Valerie asked.
“I don’t know yet, but she totally trusts me, and doesn’t suspect that I have something else in mind for her,” I told my best friend.
Valerie made a disbelieving noise that sounded like a hmm. “We’ll see.” She decided to return to practice, and waved as she walked away.
I drove home and went straight to bed. I didn’t know what to do. My mom noticed my unusual behavior, and brought me some buttered rice with shoyu, a sheet of Seasnax, and a small dish of freshly made ice cream.
“What’s wrong honey?” She asked.
“I forgot to eat today, so thanks for this,” I replied as I devoured everything.
“It’s been a while since you forgot to eat. Is there a big test coming up?”
“Yeah,” I answered honestly, even though that wasn’t the cause of my problem. I did have a test coming up.
“I figured, but don’t worry. Grades aren’t everything.”
“Thanks mom,” I muttered. I wondered if she realized that she had just insulted me. I knew that she meant well, so I let it go. She left the room, pausing by the door.
“Should I let River in when she arrives later, or send her away?”
“I think I’ll be fine in a few minutes; once my body realizes I’ve fed it.” I couldn’t risk pushing River away now and losing all that trust I’d attained.
I needed to figure out what I could have her do in front of the entire school that would be embarrassing. I racked my brain, but nothing seemed plausible. I pulled on my hair in frustration, and drifted off to sleep.
“Hi Mya,” River whispered softly in my ear as she kissed along my cheek.
“River,” I replied groggily.
“I know your teacher didn’t assign you any homework for tonight. The teachers are all going easy on us because homecoming is this weekend.”
Oh yeah! Good thing I’d already bought my dress, or else I’d have nothing to wear. I’d been too distracted to shop in days!
River kissed me again, and I rolled on my back to give her better access. I quickly forgot to think about my role in the homecoming game. I needed to lead the cheer squad, and look awesome so that I would be voted homecoming queen.
Why couldn’t I keep that in mind?
River helped me remove my shirt, and then explored my chest with her mouth. I totally melted into my bed! At this moment, I didn’t particularly care if my parents were listening outside the door, though I knew they wouldn’t be.
I moaned, and ran my hands up and down her back. I felt her tug on my pants, and shifted to let her pull them off me. She slipped her fingers inside my panties, and I inhaled sharply.
I have had sex with boys once or twice – okay okay! More than twice – but never have I felt this wonderful! Her touch did more to excite me than a guy eating me. I didn’t understand why.
It suddenly occurred to me that she was going to hate me when she found out what my true objective was. I burst out crying, and pulled her hand from between my legs. She looked at me in concern.
“It’s ok Mya.”
“No; it not!” I wailed softly. “I’m using you. I was dared to make you do something, and... and... somehow this happened.”
She emitted a small ironic laugh. “Funny, I was using you too.”
“What?” I asked in bafflement.
“I thought I might like girls rather than boys, and I was slightly attracted to you, so I decided to suggest kissing when you asked if I wanted help. I figured that if kissing you turned out enjoyable, then I’m probably a lesbian after all.”
“Are you serious?!” I was crying for a different reason now. Why was I hurt by this?
“I knew you had to have some ulterior motive,” River elaborated. “So I decided to take advantage of it, surprised that whatever you had planned made you let things go this far.”
“I was dared to make you – you know what? I’m not going to tell you. Please just go now,” I whispered the last bit with as much commanding determination as I could muster.
River nodded, and quietly left. I lay in bed, wearing nothing but my panties, awake all night agonizing over River and how she had managed to gain my trust to dupe me. I felt so stupid!
I managed to get some sleep – finally – and went to the game the next day feeling like a zombie. I dug deep within, and summoned the willpower to lead my cheer team in our routines. We cheered our team to victory, and everyone excitedly went home to prepare for the dance. Except me, I wasn’t excited, but I still did it.
I was going with the football captain – of course – and put on my dress. I knew that Valerie was going to win the dare, but it didn’t seem important anymore. I stared at myself in the mirror, and wondered who was looking back at me. I didn’t recognize myself. When had I changed so much?
The time eventually came for the king and queen to be announced, and it came as no surprise to anyone that my date and I were called up to be crowned. I watched Valerie cast me a smug look, and then look at the clock. I only had until midnight to enjoy my victory.
My hollow empty shallow victory...
I smiled and waved at anyone who said hi to me, and danced with my date, and any boy who had the guts to ask. I prayed for midnight to come quickly so that I could get this over with already. I still had hours to endure!
Suddenly, the music stopped, and everyone focused on the stage where the band was. River slowly walked to the middle, thanked the lead singer, and accepted the microphone from him. She faced the rapt audience, trembling, and swallowed nervously.
“I was dared to sing a song for everyone,” she explained with a squeak. She had to be lying, but why? The music started to play, and she sang. Horribly... at first, and then the laughter from our classmates died down, and she gained some confidence.
Her singing wasn’t great, but it was nice to listen to, and sounded like someone singing karaoke. I wondered if she really was looking at the words scroll across a screen somewhere since she didn’t seem to miss any. She was embarrassing herself in front of the whole school, and I hadn’t even asked her to!
After the song finished, I noticed that Valerie had been glaring at me for some time. I was obviously surprised, but I had won the dare! Valerie couldn’t make me give up my crown now. I smiled at her in triumph, and then realized that it didn’t matter.
I shook off my date – who was trying to get me to disappear to somewhere private with him – and walked towards my supposed best friend. She decided to exchange her glare for a look of congratulations. She even clapped.
“Here Valerie. I don’t need this anymore,” I announced as I placed my fake tiara on her head.
I walked up onto the stage, and grabbed the microphone from River. She was staring at me in shock. I really couldn’t blame her!
“River... no one has ever done anything for me as sweet and just plain awesome as what you just did. I’m not worthy of your kindness, but I love you anyway.”
The whole school sucked in a shocked breath. I really couldn’t blame them either. I was shocked myself.
River started to cry, and wrapped her arms around me. I held her tight, and then sought her lips with mine. We kissed as if there was no one else in the whole world.
Then all hell broke loose, and we were almost expelled, but you know what, who cares! If we can’t go to a school that accepts us, then we can be homeschooled, or get our GEDs. We can even enroll in an online high school!
Who really needs to subject themselves to peer pressure and torture? I know we don’t. But you know what? Our peers more or less did accept us. It was the staff, some parents, and bullies that didn’t. But fuck them! They just don’t matter in the grand scheme of things.
I took River’s hand in mind, and waited to accept our diplomas at the end of the year. With high school over, we planned to go to college together. We have the rest of our lives together, and I am pretty sure we are going to be awesomely happy!