THE APPOINTMENT

CHAPTER ONE

Justin Pendleton watched intently as several moving feet passed over his head. Sitting in the waiting room with a forgotten magazine spread across his lap, he appeared to be in a trance. Dr. Wellington's office was in the basement of a large ten story building in downtown San Benito. Every Tuesday after noon at 4pm like clock work Justin was here, sitting quietly reading a magazine to keep his mind busy. Or on certain days like this, staring out the window to keep his mind from thinking at all; the window trance it meant something was bothering him. The waiting room was small, only able to hold seven or eight patients; all the windows were up high to the ceiling, beginning right at ground level, connecting seamlessly to the sidewalk. The admissions nurse liked Justin's weekly visit's he was polite and quiet, keeping to himself. No trouble had ever come from the Pendleton's kid and she doubted it ever would. His parent's had divorced over three years ago, yet he still came every week to see Dr. Wellington, maybe for no other reason then to have someone to talk to.

ELSEWHERE

Richard Haywood was bored. He hated not being able to do anything. He and three other students had afternoon detention; the teacher sitting at her desk in the front was reading the paper. Two guys in the back were discreetly passing a playboy back and forth. While a girl in the front put on makeup.

He shouldn't be here, these people were losers, and wasting time with losers couldn't get much worse then this. Thinking back to what lead him here in the first place made him smile though. Ah, the look on Pendleton's face when he got back his history report, it was so worth it. The night prior Richard had stayed after class and once the bell rang and everyone had left; Richard went through the history reports in the un-graded box until he found Justin's. He uncapped a large red grading pen and with a smirk started to write within the margin, he then stuck the paper in their teachers graded box and left. It really would have been a harmless prank if someone hadn't seen Richard do it, he wouldn't be here now. Or maybe no one had witnessed his act of fun after all and the teacher was lying, trying to get the truth out of him; either way Richard was here now, sitting with the low life's watching time slowly pass on the wall clock.

ELSEWHERE

"Mr. Pendleton the doctor will see you now" Smiled an older nurse with clip board in hand. Tearing his eyes away from the window of passing feet, Justin put away the magazine and walked thru the open door.

"Justin it is nice to see you again" Greeted the doctor from his chair.

Dr. Wellington was a middle aged man, with dark coffee coloured eyes and puffs of cotton candy white hair framing his balding head. Black framed glasses, watched Justin take a sit next to the fish tank in his office. Justin seated himself quickly and glanced at the fish, before replying. "As always it's good to see you too Doctor"

"How have things been going for you?" Began Wellington it was a game really he would ask several simple questions then Justin would feel comfortable and open up to him. But not today, no Justin was ready to spill the second he sat down…

"Please be quiet as Allen passes out your grades, do remember this essay is worth 15 of your grade in my class," reminded Mr. Loftis. I was just sitting there as I always do, you know quietly waiting. When I felt a pain in the back of my head, at first I didn't think anything of it; until I heard snickering in the back. He was shooting rubber bands at me.

I was going to ignore him as I always do, when his taunting began "You just think you're so smart don't you Pendleton? So then tell me why your mommy still has to dress you?" I was just turning around to tell him to shut up when Allen stopped at my desk. Paper in hand, his eyes seemed to widen, I didn't understand why until he laid my paper down. F See me after class for plagiarism! I was speechless; the world was spinning, just as I felt a swell of injustice I heard him, laughing behind me: Practically giggling with glee.

That's how I knew Richard had something to do with this….

EARLIER

(Phone rings)

"Hello?"

"Mr. Haywood?"

"Yes, this is he."

"This is Principal Tucker from Jefferson high, there's a matter regarding your son Richard we need to discuss."

LATER

"You did WHAT!" boomed Lawrence Haywood, turning red in the face.

Richard hated when his parents gave him attention, because it was always bad attention.

"I told you dad it was a joke, no big deal. No one got hurt."

"No one got hurt! I think you are forgetting you represent this family! This is the third joke you've pulled this month. You are making your mother and I look bad, and after everything we do for you!"

Richard dug his hands in his pockets, keeping his eyes low. He could feel the cigarettes' between his fingers and wanting nothing more then to smoke one right now.

"Dad I just came home from detention okay, its no big deal. I've been punished already. Why are you so mad?"

Lawrence Haywood stopped pacing to address his son.

"I'll tell you why I'm so mad, the Principal called me today, to tell me that she and the school are tired of you Richard. Tired of you and your jokes, and she is going to have you expelled."

"WHAT?" Richard yelled in shock, not quite believing what his father had said.

"That's right Richie; the school is tired of your games, lucky for you I struck a deal with them."

"What kind of deal?" He asked fully expecting it to be a money matter.

"The principal thinks you crave attention of something. She said if you start seeing a therapist on a regular basis, then you can stay."

Richard's mouth dropped open, just as the cigarette he had been fingering snapped in his pocket.

"You've got to be joking!"

"This is no joke son, you have embarrassed your mother and I for the last time. I made you an appointment tomorrow at 6pm to see Dr. Wellington. He is the most experienced and honored teenage psychiatrist in all of San Benito."

"What if I don't show up?"

"Oh you're going to show up, so you don't humiliate this family more by being expelled!"