Bitter Ecstasy Part Five

"Okay Jacqueline, I hope you are ready for this." said Dean Fleming.

"Do I really need to do this?" pleaded Jake.

"Yes Jake, you owe the school an explanation. Besides, people are bound to realise that Jake is walking around in girls clothes."

Jake pouted and then nodded. "But it's going to be so embarrassing." she sighed.

The Dean laughed. "Jake, all you need to do is explain what you did. I'm not asking you preach a lecture to them for four hours."

Jake giggled. "Okay, so it's just a quick five minute speech?"

"Yes. Okay it's my turn to go on. Good luck Jake." The Dean smiled warmly at her before leaving for the large stage in the assembly hall.

"Welcome everyone, quiet down and let's get the necessary information out so you can be on your way." said the Dean.

The Dean talked to the freshmen for twenty minutes. He gave them new rules to follow by, told them about new facilities that were going to be installed in the school and made them groan in frustration at the mere mention of the end of term exams. After ending his speech, everyone started to move, but the Dean hollered into the microphone.

"You haven't been dismissed as of yet, please sit down." scolded Dean Fleming.

Hamilton, who was sitting next to Lucas, looked over to his friend in confusion.

"I swear I didn't do anything." laughed Lucas, holding up his hands.

Hamilton rolled his eyes and looked at his father with more interest than before.

"Someone has an announcement to make." That was all the Dean said before he moved to the side of the stage and Jake Pratt came out slowly.

Hamilton felt like he stopped breathing, Jake was going to admit what he/she had done. Hamilton felt sick as he turned to Lucas and grabbed the blonde boy's arm.

"Let's go Lucas." said Hamilton in fear.

Lucas looked over and shook his head. "I wanna see this."

Hamilton sighed and sank back into his seat, using his right arm to hide his face. Lucas laughed and pulled the other boy's arm down. "Listen to her man. It might give you closure." he said softly.

It took Hamilton a little time to realise what Lucas had just said.

"Oh my God did she tell you?" groaned Hamilton.

Lucas laughed. "Nah I kinda figured it out myself."

"How?" demanded Hamilton.

"Because Jake looks like a girl. Sure, with the haircut, but come on." Lucas pointed at Jake who now stood timidly at the microphone. She started to speak.

"Hi, I'm Jake Pratt, I attend Rawley Boy's." She looked up and then started again. "…but that's not where I was supposed to enrol, normally I would have enrolled in Rawley Girl's across the lake." Jake gave the crowd a second to let this piece of information sink in. Everyone looked at each other mixed with confusion and boredom. Jake thought the situation was funny, but she couldn't really laugh at it.

"Okay I'm gonna bite the bullet here. I wanted to get noticed so I cut off my hair and enrolled at a boys school. I am a girl, my name is Jacqueline Pratt, and I shall be attending my rightful place in Rawley Girls." Jake finished breathlessly and looked over at the Dean. He nodded his head and Jake walked off the stage, leaving the rumbling sounds of her confused classmates.

Ryder laughed "Well that's bloody Ricki Lake for you." All his friends laughed. The Dean came back onto the stage.

"Silence." He said sternly. "I wanted Jake to do this and to tell you herself, we are dealing with the situation. I know this comes as a shock, but please don't hound Miss Pratt. What she did was for personal reasons. Thank you. You may all leave."

Everyone rushed out and milled around each other, all talking about the newest gossip.

Hamilton was walking in a daze. He couldn't remember getting up or leaving the hall. Lucas' voice brought him back to the world.

"Well that was fun." he said but with no smile.

"Yeah sure, she tells me fours days ago, and now the whole freaking school knows." replied Hamilton bitterly.

"Well, she did tell your dad, who was obviously going to make her fess-up. She didn't really have much of a choice anyway." reasoned Lucas.

"Whatever."

"Come on, stop being a bitch already! What's done is done." Lucas flung an arm around Hamilton, hugging him closer.

Hamilton sighed and then pushed Lucas off him. "Jake was my best friend and she lied to me. Shit, do you even realise that I questioned my own sexuality, because I thought I was in love with a guy, who ends up telling me that's he's a she? How screwed up is that?!"

Lucas rolled his eyes. "You've told me that twenty times since I have been here. You're hurt, 'cause you love Jake. Okay understood." Lucas began to walk away.

"What kind of friend are you?" shouted Hamilton.

"A good one." smirked Lucas, still not turning around.

"I'm hurting, and you act like it's the most boring thing ever happened to you." said Hamilton reproachfully.

Lucas turned around and smiled. "I've known you a day Hamilton, and you look and talk to me like I have known you all my life."

Hamilton looked shocked and took a step back, hurt. "Sorry to burden you." he spat.

Lucas shook his head from side to side, letting his long blonde hair cover his eyes. "It's been all about you Hamilton…what about Jake?"

"Well, what about Jake?"

"Exactly. You don't even know." Lucas sighed and walked further away.

Hamilton stood still, asking himself "What about Jake?"

Days went by, and Lucas and Hamilton still hadn't spoken. Lucas tried to grab his friends' attention, but Hamilton had a desire to avoid him at all costs. The days turned into weeks. Jake's statement of truth was old news, and she was looked upon in awe and congratulations. She became ultimately popular with the girls. Some guys were still weird about her being Jake "the gay guy", but none of them could dispute the beauty in the girl.

Jake walked up to Bella's gas station wearing a soft summer dress. The weeks had now turned into months, and summer session was coming to an end.

"Hey Bella." greeted Jake.

"Hi Jake, I'll be with you in a minute." Bella continued serving her customer while Jake sat down on the new bench outside the office.

Bella came over and sighed. "What's up?"

"How would you like to come to New York for the holidays?" asked Jake.

Bella closed her eyes. "That would be a dream."

Jake grinned. "Well, I asked Scout and Will and they're ready to come, and so is Lucas, so all the only person left is you. Please say you'll come."

Bella sighed. "I'll ask my dad, but no promises."

"Fair enough."

"Speaking of Lucas how are things?" asked Bella excitedly.

"They are so great, he is so sweet and funny."

"I can't believe you've been dating him for two months now!"

"I know! That's like the longest relationship I have ever had." giggled Jake.

"Is you mom cool with Lucas coming to your New York apartment?" Bella asked, grinning.

"Well not really. She isn't so keen on why I'm bringing the boys, but she said she is going to keep an eye on us." laughed Jake.

"She's gonna be there?" asked Bella, shocked.

"Yeah." said Jake happily, grinning.

Bella hugged her friend. "Oh I am so happy for you!"

"My life is coming together… finally."

"I know. I talked to Hamilton today." said Bella

Lucas being gone from the picture, Bella was the only other person Hamilton kept in contact with. He felt safe and comforted with her.

"How is he?" asked Jake. Through Bella, Jake kept an eye on Hamilton…after all she still loved him.

"He's okay. He still doesn't know about you and Lucas though."

"Well it's none of his business anyway!" snapped Jake.

"I'm just saying." replied Bella

"I'm sorry Bella, but I'm not going to get punished anymore. I said I was sorry, there isn't much I can do now."

"I know."

"We're leaving for New York in two days, and staying there for six weeks. Ask your dad, but if you can't come I'll swing by and say bye, okay?"

Jake stood up and pulled Bella into a soft hug.

"Bye Bella." waved Jake.

"Bye." said Bella softly.