A Bad Day
Written by Zelda
Part Three: Forgiven
Eddy snarled and hurled his bookbag onto his bed, his door sealing shut behind him, locking him in the relative darkness of his room. He just wished that this whole day had never happened! That he'd never gone to school, that he'd never taken that test! And later he'd be wishing that his parents never found out. Those two would never be satisfied with him, no matter what he did, no matter how he tried! Eddy slumped into a chair and pounded his fist on a desk. His brother said that there would be days like this. And he wished that this day had never happened. Musing, Eddy wondered how he could get that little test paper to go away. His parents would get suspicious if they didn't see the bi-weekly test paper on the refrigerator door. Maybe he could get Victor to eat it for him. Maybe he could get Double D to dissolve it in a vat of acid. Or maybe he could get Ed to forge his mother's signature on the paper, so that he could turn it back in to the teacher and avoid getting in trouble yet again. That was it, Ed and Double D would know how to bail him out. Some relief finally coming to his frayed nerves, Eddy hopped down off his chair and walked over to his bed, pulling his bookbag open to search for the test paper. Eddy suddenly frowned and pulled his hand away, something sticky rubbing off on it. Had he spilled soda on his bag again? His shades were down and blocking out the sunlight, so Eddy reached over and switched on a lamp to see better. He was shocked when he found the sticky stuff on his hand to be red. Blood red. "What the---" Eddy started. "Where'd the heck this come from…?" And then it started to come back to him. The past ten minutes or so had vanished into an angry haze, but he remembered walking home with Double D, going inside his house with him. And then they had started talking…. and then--- "Aww man…" Eddy slapped his forehead with his clean hand. "Did I really…?" he stared at the bloodstain on his bag, unbelieving. Just how hard had he hit his friend? "Jeez… I…" Eddy left his bag on his bed and stood up, wiping his hand clean with a tissue. He thought about calling Double D's house, but why would he answer the phone now? Eddy sighed and opened his door again, squinting into the light of the setting sun as he ran out into the lane.
He knocked frantically a few times, and heard some movement inside. Eddy would normally have been content to wait on Edd's doorstep, but at this stage he was too nervous to even stand still. He twisted the handle, found the door to be already open, and walked in. His eyes started across the room, and before he could open his mouth to call out, he spotted Ed's flat head poking up from the couch. "Ed!" he started, scurrying over. "W---where's Double D?" His feet squeaked in something, and he looked down to see a half-cleaned streak of blood across the wood floor. By the time his shocked eyes shifted back to Ed, the taller boy had moved into a far more defensive stance. Eddy sidestepped the stain on the floor, coming around the side of the couch, and saw exactly what Ed was protecting. Edd was curled against the opposite arm of the couch, cowering from Eddy as if he were a small puppy before a man with a rolled-up newspaper.
"You've been a bad boy, Eddy." Ed growled quietly, his tone completely serious.
"I--- I know--- I didn't mean it!" Eddy stuttered. "Is.. he okay?"
Edd replied by sitting up a little, opening his eyes and looking back. He had a plastic bag full of ice over his stomach. "I… think so, Eddy…" he started, sounding like a mouse with a sore throat. He was nearly shivering out of fear.
"God Double D… I'm so sorry, I didn't mean to---" Eddy stammered, taking a few steps closer, holding his hand out in some sort of consoling manner.
In response, Ed frowned, snorting as if he were an ox. He wanted Eddy to keep his distance.
"Eddy…" Edd started, trying to straighten himself up into a normal sitting position. "I… I don't understand. Why?"
"I… I dunno…" Eddy suddenly found himself at a loss. That was something he should have asked himself before. "I… I remember what I said to you, Double D, I dunno what came over me, none of it was true, I swear!"
"Eddy." Ed growled. "You hurt Double D."
God, he really did, didn't he? He didn't think that he had kicked him that hard… Jeez, how could he? He had frightened, and hurt, really hurt, his best friend! Eddy internally felt like ripping himself into pieces at the moment. He wished this day had never happened.
"I'm sorry---" he stuttered. "I got mad---- it wasn't your fault Double D, it never was… I just---" Eddy realized that his eyes were hurting him, stinging because tears were welling up in them. He shook his head and blinked hard, an instinctive pride kicking in, not wanting to let the others see him crying. Not winning the battle he knew he shouldn't have to fight in the first place, Eddy slunk to the other end of the couch, and sat down, staring at the floor. "I don't know how to explain guys---- I've just been angry… I never wanted to hurt ya Double D…. I'm so sorry."
In a cautious response, Edd sat up a little more, removing the bag of ice from his stomach. "These… outbursts of frustration are actually quite a common characteristic of adolescent behavior, Eddy…" Eddy looked back at him, and since it didn't look like he wanted to plant his foot into his gut again, Edd decided to continue. "I believe that… your true source of anger stems from relations with your parents… and social constructs created by the educational environment?"
"Ummm, I think so." Eddy screwed up his face, trying to decipher Edd's statement.
"So you lashed out at me… because…" Here, Edd stopped. He had run out of an explanation. Now even he was at a loss for words.
"I… I dunno why… I just had a really bad day, a lot of really bad days. It's… not anyone's fault." Eddy admitted, fiddling with a shoelace. "But I swear, Double D, I never meant to hurt you… I won't do it again…"
"I believe you, Eddy." Edd said softly. "We… we're friends, after all, all of us."
Ed nodded at this point, and joined the two on the couch.
"You… you do?" Eddy was surprised by Edd's willingness to forgive. After all, Eddy had spent the earlier part of the day kicking him in the ribs! He really must have trusted him, to go and say that.
"Yeah…" Edd replied. "I think both Ed and I can sympathize with how you felt… Just… don't beat me up again, 'kay?" He trailed off during the last part of his sentence, the twinge of fear in his voice returning.
It killed Eddy to hear that. Edd was always flighty. But he shouldn't have to be afraid of him, of all people. "I promise Double D, really…" he nodded, placing a hand over his heart and hoping that he looked genuine for once. He wasn't sure if it was working, Edd regarded him for a moment, before he nodded slowly.
"Okay Eddy." he spoke, smiling a little as he did so. "I believe you. You know… if you're really that frustrated about school, maybe I could help?"
"How?" Eddy looked at him.
"Maybe I could, well, tutor you…" Edd started trailing off, becoming visibly nervous again.
"Heh." Eddy chuckled. "If you could rub off any of your genius on me, I'd be set for life."
For the first time in what seemed like too long a time, all three of them smiled, and the bruises seemed to disappear altogether.
(Yup, that's all folks. Don't kill me for writing this! Run Plank!)