No Laughing Matter
"This DJ BB and . . . and just BB. Party of one. I'm gonna start you all out with some sick tunes. Call in with some request, or if you just wanna talk to the big B." BB turned off the microphone and hitting the switch on the board for the music mix for that days show. He pulled off his headphones with a sigh. It was difficult to do a radio talk show with only one person. Who was he suppose to talk to? Himself? Surely not. But there was no one else. He was hesitant to admit it, even to himself, that part of him was hoping that Jez would appear in the studio just as he was flipping the 'on air' switch. And of course they wouldn't be ok but they could at least pretend for the show. Then afterwards BB could go on not talking to him.
Jez was no where to be found. He was gone as soon as classes were over not to be seen again until the next day. BB was just as shocked and horrified as anyone else about what happened. And at first when he got the phone call from Lola he didn't believe it at all. But Jez was his best friend. Sure, they haven't known each other all that long but Jez was a good kid, his best mate. At least BB thought he was at one time. Now . . . now BB didn't know what to think.
Ronnie turned up the kitchen radio onto the school station. She cleared plates into the trash can before setting them near the sink. It was a few minutes after the first music break when she realized why it sounded so strange. It turned out the radio show was missing half it's persons. Jez. She didn't know why it took her so long to realize her favorite velvety smooth voice was missing over the radio. Was Jez sick? She hadn't seen him eating in the café for a few days. "I hope he's not sick! I haven't even sent him a get well card!" She was feeling horribly guilty after this. She couldn't even consentrate on her work. Eventually she was sent out to serve the lingering students from lunch after she dropped her third glass.
"Hello, Canteen girl? Am I going to have to get it myself?" Ronnie blinked and found a very displeased brunette with a tray in on hand and the other hand on her hip.
"Oh, I'm so sorry Claudine. What can I get for you?"
"I already told you!" There was a moment of silence before Claudine huffed. "Chicken Panini, no tomatoes." Ronnie scoped a panini out of the warming plate and quickly onto the drama queens tray. She was always just a little scared of Claudine but the question slipped from her mouth instead of her usual goodbye. In place of 'have a nice day' came
"You happen to know where Jez is?" Normally it wouldn't be that big of a deal but by the way Claudine stopped in her tracks and spun around in her sky high heels like Ronnie had insulted her outfit she knew she had asked the wrong question. Pieces of Claudine's perfectly groomed hair stuck to her shiny pink lip gloss.
"If we're lucky he's rotting on the side of road in a ditch!" She snapped clicking away leaving Ronnie in mild shock.
"Danny?" Danny looked up from his desk, which had just recently been moved front and center to help him focus better.
"The reading? Are you finished with the first page?" Anna paused in her grading. Danny ran a hand through his curly hair.
"Oh, uh . . . no. Not yet."
"It's been twenty minutes already. You know I only agreed to these private tutoring sessions under one condition." Danny looked down at his book. He watched the letters dance around the page and switch places with each other. "You remember what I said don't you?" Anna said firmly standing up from her desk.
"I had to try." Danny said softly. He blinked several times in hopes that the words would form magically and he would be able to understand all of the text with no problem, just like all the other kids.
"It seems to me that you aren't trying very hard today. Every time I look up you're not reading." Though her voice sounded strict she was really worried for her student. Picking favorites as a teacher wasn't usually smiled upon but she admitted that Danny was. He was so full of energy and passion. He didn't know that why she pushed him so hard. He chose performing arts as a career and in that career reading was an essential.
"I'm sorry, I am trying." Danny expected that to be the end of it and she would sit back down and he would battle the text on the page and all the other thoughts in his head fighting for dominance. It seemed a certain blonde was winning. Anna's face softened after analyzing the teens face. She'd been a teacher long enough to recognize the face of distress.
"I think you could try better at home. Go ahead. Get a good nights sleep tonight too." She gave him a reassuring smile but saw no relief on his face.
"No, really I'll finish here."
"Goodbye Mr. Miller." Danny sighed and closed his book and gathered up his stuff. Anna sat back down at her desk and wondered why any student, no matter how dedicated would rather sit in a classroom and study opposed to doing it at home. Danny was long gone by the time she thought to ask.
Lauren patted a makeup brush around her eyes. She stared at her reflection in the mirror. She didn't understand what she had done wrong. She was pretty, wasn't she? Maybe she wasn't as pretty as Claudine. Maybe she wasn't as cute as Lola. She did have some likable qualities though, didn't she? She was so happy with Danny. She thought that maybe things would finally end up in her favor. Her first boyfriend, her first kiss, and dare she say out loud? It made it real. Tear swelled up in her eyed defeating the fresh makeup easily and leaving behind what lay underneath, Red eyes and the broken heart of a pretty girl. But not as pretty as Jez. Even if he was a boy he was pretty. She or anyone else couldn't deny it. Jez, with his blonde hair and blue eyes. Why should anyone want her over him? She wished that it was an easy answer. Danny. Danny would rather have her over Jez even if Danny cheated. In the end he would still pick her. She squeezed her eyes shut and wished. Wished that it was an easy answer, no question about it. In reality she didn't know one way or the other. But not knowing let her pretend that Danny chose her every time.
Danny pushed the ear buds of Jez's mP3 player as far as they would go into his ears before falling backwards onto the bed. He turned up the volume as far as it would go and bit down hard on his lip. He didn't know what to do. He was confused. So confused. He knew he was suppose to like girls. So why couldn't he stop thinking of Jez? He was so confused. There were exactly two times in Danny Miller's life when he was utterly at a loss of what to do. The first, being in front of all those people at the Girls Aloud interview. The second, being right now. He fisted his hands in his hair pulling in frustration. This wasn't how it was suppose to be. Jez was suppose to be a game, just good old fun. Something he couldn't do with Lauren. This was all his fault. He already knew Jez was gay but . . . It wasn't the sex Danny missed. It was Jez.