Hey Arnold! Cafeteria Confessions:

Chapter 18: The Presentation and the Makeout Session

AN: Last chapter is self explanatory, enjoy it and r/r please, thank you!

Helga had her hands behind her back nervously after reading the paper Arnold had written for her class project. She was surprised that nobody was laughing at the misfortune in her life since she was such a bully most of the time to everyone. Instead though, Phoebe and Lila were staring at her in understanding, because they had known her story, and the rest of the class including Sid, Stinky, and Harold were just watching her. They looked curious and wondered if she was going to snap, start crying, or start telling something else depressing about her life.

Helga cleared her throat. "And so, yeah, that's my life story. Mistreated, misplaced and misunderstood. Do any of you chuckleheads have any questions for me?"

Arnold, who was standing a little ways behind Helga, narrowed his eyes and warned in that understanding yet firm tone of his, "Helga..."

"What?" She shrugged, looking at him. "Just because I'm nice, kind, compassionate and supportive doesn't mean that I can't be a bully sometimes."

Rhonda narrowed her eyes and looked curiously amongst the two of them. "Well, see Helga, that's what I don't exactly...get. No offense, but you've been the bully all of your years at P.S. 118."

Stinky nodded in agreement. "Yeah. You've been dang right ornery most of the time."

"Yeah!" Harold added, "And you've hit me before, too. Aw, I'm so confused!" he grabbed his head.

Mr. Simmons, who had also of course been listening to Helga's special presentation about her life as it concerned her family was surprised as well. "Helga, I think it's very...special that you would come up with this...unique conclusion about who you really are, and it's wonderful that you feel so highly about yourself. I'm proud to have you as one of my students as well."

Suddenly, Sid started laughing now that he had overcome his shock about the whole thing. "Ha! Now I bet you Helga's gonna start acting all nice and go prancing around in little pink and white dresses."

Helga cracked her knuckles and glared at him, making the rest of the class [except Phoebe and Lila] start to laugh. Ignoring it though, Helga still looked like she was getting ready to hit him…though inside her nerves were almost shot. 'Why did I agree to this, anyway? My love for Arnold isn't really worth opening up to everybody to get ridiculed like this, is it?'

As if he could read her mind, Arnold stood up, walked over to her and put a hand over Helga's fist to calm her a bit. Then, he stepped in front of Helga, turned to the class and addressed them, openly. "Look, every one, just because Helga is a good person deep down, that doesn't mean you guys have the right to poke fun at it. You guys don't know her the way that I do, and if my opinion were voiced here, I would say that she's nicer, sweeter, and funnier than all you guys put together. Not only that, but she's smart, caring, passionate, and thoughtful. I think you guys should be ashamed of yourselves for laughing at such a wonderful person, and because you're laughing it just goes to prove that you guys are the mean and nasty ones, that the only bullies here are you."

Everyone's laughter died down as some of them looked down feeling embarrassed, and others looked around, trying not to focus on what Arnold was saying to them; trying not to focus on who they really were…

He narrowed his eyes at his class. "And about me? Well, I'm not as wonderful as everybody thinks I am, either. I have a manipulative, aggressive, and crazy side. I just solve problems to hide it most of the time, and if anyone even thinks about putting down Helga for being a good person, I will see to it that the person who puts her down will get to know me personally, and everything that I really am. And don't forget, I know Karate."

Arnold's words were enough to silence their whole class, especially Rhonda who had seen proof of this when Arnold punched Oscar out. Helga couldn't help but smile at her love's bravery.

Stinky was the one who broke the silence. "Now...wait just a minute; this makes no dang sense. Does that mean Helga is Arnold and Arnold is Helga. Gosh…"

Arnold pulled his report that Helga wrote for him out of his pocket and started reading it aloud. "I live with my grandparents and several tenants in a boarding house called Sunset Arms. My grandparents are taking care of me now because my parents left for Central America to help a dying tribe of natives, and they haven't returned yet. I don't want to fear the worst, but as time passes by, the worst is becoming a more distinct possibility. Because of this, I endeavor to carry on as they have: helping others. I try to help others as best as I can. I don't have money or my license or anything, but I do have the advice that I can give to others. I've helped not only my peers, but adults as well. It's impressive how many adults have come to me, asking for help. Which is not to say that I'm perfect, because I'm not. I'm completely hooked on solving problems. It makes me feel better about myself." Everyone was paying attention now, most had their eyes widened as they listened to the truth about Arnold's personality. "It's difficult going through life alone. I learned how to care and have compassion, like my parents have, but it's a huge burden I've been carrying for so long. I may be only ten, but sometimes I feel like I'm fifty, or worse, the last sane person in the boarding house. And if it wasn't for my friends, my special friends whom I solve problems for, I wouldn't be able to survive..." He took a deep breath before then continuing…. "I solve problems for everyone to hide my manipulative, aggressive and crazy side. He looked up at the class. "Kinda like Helga hides her compassionate, kind and supportive side by bullying others," he explained, then he looked down at the paper and continued, "I've acted crazy to prevent being killed, but I've also beat people up for no reason, like when I learned Karate. It's all a way that I cope with my parents being gone, and so that people can't see the mistakes that I do make."

There were a few seconds of silence…and then the class erupted in hysterical laughter. Everyone except Helga and Arnold were laughing after Arnold read his report.

Lila tried to calm her laughter down to reply calmly to Arnold's paper. "I'm..." she giggled. "I'm ever so sorry, Arnold, it's just ever so insane that you think you're really mean and nasty. I've just...never known you to be that way."

Arnold's face darkened, and his report crumpled into his tightening fist, but right before he could open his mouth to shout quite a number of curses he had heard from his grandmother and the boarders, Helga suddenly stood in front of him and yelled,


Everyone's laughing came to a halt when they heard Helga cussing them out.

Helga turned to look at Arnold, who looked like he was going to snap, and then turned back to the class to narrow her eyes at all of them. She showcased Arnold's expression to the class. "See? Now look what you've done! You've all gone and drove him crazy. Well, you'd be lucky if he ever solved another problem for you guys, now. And I doubt that I myself could hold him back now. I mean, even I was scared of him when he went on his karate rampage a few months back! So if you value your pathetic lives, I suggest you hurry up and LEAVE before he kills ALL OF YOU! AND HE CAN DO IT, TOO!"

Everyone stared a moment before rushing to leave the classroom before Arnold could kill them. Gerald, Sid and Stinky turned to look at Arnold in confusion when they were at the door, still not believing he was actually the crazy one.

Arnold put his hand together and bowed down at them, as if he were getting ready to strike his first move. He gave them a dark, nasty scowl.

Their eyes widened in shock, and the three of them screamed and ran out, then, the bell rang...

After all of the class was gone, Arnold held out his hand for Helga to take, and Helga took it. Just before they left the classroom, Arnold grabbed the camcorder on Mr. Simmons desk, for no reason at all, and held it behind him as they walked away.

Mr. Simmons just stared at the two kids in confusion and scratched his head.

Lunch at P.S 118...

As Arnold found himself and Helga a table to sit at, Helga ran to the side of the cafeteria behind one of the roll away carts for a moment. She was so giddy that he had held her hand all the way to the cafeteria that she just needed to let some of her feelings out! She pulled out her locket that Arnold had secretly given back to her yesterday. She sighed lovingly at having it in her possession again…that beautiful picture of her beloved's face. "Oh Arnold! You're the greatest thing that's ever happened to me. Heck, you defended me in front of the class, held my hand to lunch... It's almost like we're already a couple! Oh, Arnold, my football headed love god. I can't go on without you and yet, here I am, alone, still not being able to tell you my true deepest darkest secret." She swooned to herself, until she opened her eyes and noticed a camcorder facing her. She became angry. "Wait a minute, I'm on tape...grrrr!" She knocked the camcorder on the ground out of the person's hands who was holding it, only to see..."ARNOLD! I...I mean, what?! What do you think you're doing taping me, Football head?"

They had the whole cafeteria's attention for a moment before everyone (still a little freaked out by Arnold and Helga before) all turned back to eating their lunches.

Arnold rubbed his arm, nervously before bending down to pick up the camcorder. "Sorry, I just borrowed this camcorder from Mr. Simmons for Gerald and I to work on a project later on today." He lied. "I was just curious what you were doing, over in the corner, beside the lunch cart, and I was wondering who you were talking to…" he questioned as he noticed her put something that looked a lot like the locket he gave back to her in her white shirt pocket.

Helga just scowled and defended her actions. "None of your business, hair-boy! Just because I reveal my life to you that doesn't mean that you have the right to follow me around every waking moment! And don't even think that I believe you and Gerald-o are working on some sort of project! Criminy, I think the reason you took it from Simmons's desk was to tape what you just saw me doing right now!" she accused him.

'So she did see me take Mr. Simmons camcorder from his desk...' "Sorry, Helga, I didn't mean to sneak up on you." He averted his gaze from her narrowed eyes and her accusations directed at him.

"You never seem to mean to sneak up on me." She rolled her eyes, not believing a word he said.

Arnold sighed as he walked her over to their cafeteria table. "Come on, Helga, you agreed to be yourself from now on."

Helga sighed and walked back over to join him again. "I'm sorry, Arnold, I just don't like it when people try to invade my personal privacy. Anyway, why'd you want us to sit together?" She asked cautiously as she figured that he must have some sort of motive.

Arnold smiled slightly at her. He took the camcorder in his hands and gently pressed the record button and silently hoped that Helga didn't notice. He laid it back down, facing them. "Well...I kinda wanted to talk to you about...us."

Helga swallowed, the words he said echoing in her head. 'He...he can't be serious, can he? He wants there to be an 'us', even after all the things I've done to him in the past?' "Why do you still want to hang around me, Arnoldo? Haven't I tormented you enough? Why...how can you possibly still care about...us?"

He didn't even have to think about his answer. He grabbed her hand and looked into her blue eyes. "The question really is: haven't I tormented you enough already this year? You've loved me for so many years, and I've done nothing but break your heart. I didn't understand why you needed to keep your reputation up until I realized the class would see me crying on tape. Helga, you've been such a big influence on my life, and I wouldn't know what to do without you. I care about you, unconditionally, even if you hit me every day of the week, I would still care about you. You could humiliate me in front of the class the rest of the year and I would still care about you...I...I care..."" he reached with his other hand to touch her chin and felt her breathe in nervously. He couldn't believe it; she was just as nervous being around him as he was with her.

The bell rang and they both stood up, staring into each other's eyes, still holding hands.

As everyone walked out of the lunchroom, Arnold continued talking to Helga, not sure where he was going with his conversation. "I...I don't know how to feel anymore when I'm with you. I...I can't slow my heart down, my mind starts speeding up, my thoughts become blurry." His voice turned to a whisper, "Is this love, Helga? Is this the way that you feel when you're around me?"

"It's..." her eyes watered in happiness, realizing that her dream was just starting to become a reality. "It's the exact way I've felt since I was three years old and I laid eyes on that beautiful face of yours, holding that umbrella, shielding me from the rain. It's what I tried to tell you on the FTI roof but had to take back after you gave me the chance to back out." She whispered her next words as she pushed him against the nearest wall in the cafeteria. "Every time I see you, I want to hold you and never let go. To feel your soft skin against mine, to feel your warm breath on my face, to hug you and kiss you and..." Her breath caught as she looked into his eyes. He was so close to her now that they really could kiss, and nobody would know because they all went to class.

Arnold noticed that she had her arms around his shoulders and he put his arms around her neck cautiously. It was getting more difficult to resist her beautiful blue eyes staring into his, or the feel of her body against his hands, or...or... He took a deep breath, rather shakily as he leaned on her shoulders slightly. He really wanted to kiss her, but was absolutely terrified that she would push him away. He admitted to her in a whisper. "I...I can't resist you, not like this."

"And do you think that I can? Not after the cafeteria confessions. Not after...all that's happened." She leaned closer, her lips were less than an inch away from his.

"I...I might not be very good at this," he suddenly admitted sheepishly, feeling butterflies in his stomach at how close they now were, but wanting to kiss her lips so badly.

Helga became confident as she realized that he was just as nervous as she was. "Oh, we practiced this before, don't you remember? The play, the beach, the roof..." She leaned closer, and their lips came together.

Arnold felt like electricity was going through his body as her lips met his. He was thankful Helga pushed him against the wall because his heart was beating so fast he felt like he would faint. He was sure he would pass out from the intensity of the kiss she was giving him. It just about made his heart explode.

Helga tilted her head slightly, sealing her mouth against his, and after a few moments she tickled his lips with her tongue. She needed to be closer to him. She loved all their other kisses in the past, but they were nothing compared to the amazing feelings she was getting from this one. She broke the kiss because she noticed Arnold was running out of breath, and he was not opening his mouth to french her like she had wanted him to do. She breathed heavily as she spoke in pants to him. "Open...up to me...my love."

He couldn't stop his legs from going numb at her intense words. His breathing wouldn't slow down, and yes, he kind of did want to kiss her like that, but he didn't know how. The time she kissed him on the FTi building she started to kiss him that way but he had been unresponsive, and he hadn't liked-her-liked-her at the time, either. Now that he liked her back, he was too nervous to kiss her for fear that he would just... ruin it. He took a shaky breath. "I...don't know how to french. I've never done it."

"Nonsense football head, just...just follow my lead...my lover...my love..." She sealed her lips against his again, and tickled his lips with her tongue. She moved her teeth apart gently, enough to signal to him what to do.

He finally opened up…and then just about lost it when her tongue touched his. It...it tasted of cherry flavored gum, both sweet and addicting. He slowly moved his tongue to collide with hers, wanting to get closer to her somehow.

Helga almost squealed with pleasure and tried to twist her tongue around his.

Arnold groaned and gripped her shoulders more tightly, pulling Helga closer to him so that he could lean himself against the wall while they were kissing. The intense feelings she was giving him were too much, too fast. They were...they were barely ten…Well, she was still nine. Yet he managed to think to himself amidst it all... 'Actually, we may be young, but we've both had to grow up at such a young age. Maybe it's actually normal for me to feel this way right now…'

Helga got even closer to him, feeling his body melt into hers, and smiling when she felt him instinctively getting even closer to her too. For a moment she was glad that this hadn't happen on the FTI rooftop or any of the other times they were kissing. There hadn't been enough time then to enjoy what she was enjoying now. Too bad they were in the school cafeteria, though. Still though for a few more moments at least she kept wrestling his tongue with hers, enjoying every moment of their makeout session.

Arnold knew they really needed to stop or else they were going to get caught. Either that or he was going to do something he really regretted…even though he had no clue what that was…though he could feel a few questionable instincts bubbling up inside of him. He hesitantly broke the kiss, their lips snapping together as they pulled away.

They both were gasping for air now, as if the earth didn't have enough of it to give them after their intense making out.

Helga was the first to speak through pants. The kissing was even beginning to get intense for her. "C-c...criminey!"

Arnold laughed lightly as he leaned against the wall and pulled her against him, to hug her tightly. He was still gasping for air himself. "Sorry...I didn't mean for it to get...that out of hand."

Helga pulled away to look into her love's eyes. She continued to gasp for more air as she spoke. "You...okay, Football-Head? You look like you're about to pass out."

Arnold groaned out his reply. "N...Not exactly. I feel like my legs are about to give out."

Helga sighed with a groan, but she wanted to kiss some more. "You too, huh? I...would have let us get carried away...if we weren't in the cafeteria...Wanna make out in your room later?" A sudden giggle escaped her.

Arnold reached up and brushed his hands through her hair, feeling her pink bow and starting to get lost in her beautiful blue eyes once again. For once he wasn't blushing about what she said. He still wanted to be close to her, too. And so he replied, quite truthfully…though still humbly… "Maybe...maybe when we're a little older. Right now, though, I need to calm down a little, and so do you. We have a couple more classes to go to before we go home today, and I'm sure that you don't want the class to see us doing what we just did." He chuckled a little, he felt so giddy.

Helga had to laugh at what he said. "I think our presentation earlier was enough."

Arnold laughed as well as he brought himself to ask her a question that's been on his mind.

"So...What are we now, Helga? Did you want me to be your boyfriend?"

Helga reached out and stroked some of his sweaty hair away from his face. She smiled so tenderly down at him. "Yes. Boyfriend, lover, fiancée, and eventually, my husband."

Arnold smiled back at her affectionately. "I, um…I-I think I can move now, Helga."

Helga just sighed softly and let go of her hold on him as well and leaned back to realize that she could actually stand on her own feet too.

Arnold walked slowly yet a little shakily to the camcorder that was taping them and that was still lying on the cafeteria table. He smiled as he picked it up and pushed the stop button. He rewound the tape to re-watch him and Helga passionately kiss together for the first time. He smiled affectionately at the camcorder, and grinned nervously as he watched Helga approach him.

Helga smirked at Arnold, but then smiled, "Oooo...you're so going to get it this time, Football Lover. No one gets the best of Helga G. Pataki, not even her boyfriend, though I don't know why you wanted to capture this loving moment...Was it for posterity?" She smiled more and even fluttered her eyelashes a little, adoring being allowed to flirt with him completely openly and freely.

Arnold blushed and smiled more and held the camcorder away from her, in case she tried to grab it. She wanted the tape, it was obvious, but he wanted the tape for different reasons than she might, and more important reasons too. He put the camcorder and his hands behind his back. "Maybe that's the reason why…" He smirked back at her playfully. "…Then again, maybe I just want to get it published as the newest Cafeteria Confession, you know, so that Principal Wartz could post it on television for us." He grinned as he watched Helga's eyes get wider and wider by the second. "You know, so that maybe instead of just being yourself around me, you could be yourself around the class…" He leaned in closer and whispered in her ear... "…That is, so you'd have to be public about your undying love for me, of course." He grinned as he kissed her cheek and, with that, headed out of the cafeteria to go to his next class...

A wide eyed, shocked looking Helga was just staring at him as he walked away… then, she suddenly growled and ran after him at full speed, 'fury' painting her features. "FOOTBALL HEAD, I'M GOING TO KILL YOU!"

The End!

AN: WHOOOOHOO! -dances- I'm done...I'm done...I'm done...! -grins very happily-
Hope you enjoyed this legacy, and sorry, no sequels. :)