Chapter 6: The Memories at Amigos
"Oh god, I can't go in there." Rosalina said as Nat pulled into the empty parking lot of Amigos.
"Well, it doesn't matter because you gotta pack up your stuff eventually. So why not do it now?" Nat told her.
"Fine, let's go." They walked in to front entrance and to Rosalina's locker in Music Hall, in between Nat's and Qaasim's. She opened it and looked at the well decorated door. It had pictures of her and Nat and the band. A couple of phone numbers were written down. Inside her locker, she had her books and binders and notebooks. She threw them all in a box Nat found. He went to put it in the car. When he came back, he found Rosalina walking around the gym.
"A lot of memories here huh?" Nat asked as we walked in.
"Our first dance happened right… here." She marked the exact spot.
"How do you know?" He asked walking closer.
"See that little black blob." Rosalina pointed to it.
"Yeah, wait, you actually wrote something there?" Nat asked her.
"Yeah, read it." Rosalina said. It said, Where Nat and Rosalina shared their first dance.
"How did I not notice that?" He wondered out loud. "So, do you remember when we had gym class together last year?"
"Yeah, I unfortunately do. You suck at dodge ball." Rosalina said
"Rosalina, pass me the ball." Nat yelled. Reluctantly, she threw the ball to her best friend. But of course, he forgot who was on his own team and chucked the ball at the team's best player. The whistle then blew, signaling class was over.
"Nat, what the hell did you do that for?" Rosalina asked on the way to the locker room.
"I didn't know you weren't supposed to hit your teammates." Nat said. Rosalina pushed him and walked into the girl's locker room.
"What about the time me and Qaasim snuck in at night and decorated the place for your birthday?" Rosalina said.
"Why are we doing this again?" Qaasim asked Rosalina.
"Cause Nat won't see it coming. We gotta be one step ahead if we want to surprise him." Rosalina explained.
"All right, you got the decorations?" Qaasim asked as he finished picking the lock.
"Yeah, in my bag." Rosalina said. "You have the spray paint right?"
"I got it, what do you want me to write?" He asked, walking to an empty white wall.
"Happy birthday, you big boy!" Rosalina said, with humor in her voice.
"You got it, he's you best friend." Qaasim said as he started his masterpiece.
"Ain't I lucky?" Rosalina said in her best Southern accent she could do without laughing.
The next day…
Nat was walking in alone in the hall towards the gym. Rosalina asked him to meet her there early to help her with her cheer stunts. He agreed even though it was his birthday. He found the gym to be dark so he walked in calling Rosalina's name. Nobody answered so he found the light switched and waited for the giant lights to flicker on. When they did, he was surprised with his best friend standing in the middle of the gym, holding a giant teddy bear and 14 balloons.
"Happy birthday Nat."
"And the many times me and Qaasim stayed after school and pretended we were doing homework but we were really hiding from you guys." Rosalina reminded him.
"Is the coast clear?" Rosalina asked into her walkie talkie.
"Yeah, Thomas just left detention. Were clear, let's meet in the science lab. I'll bring the intertubes, you hook up the hose." Qaasim answered back as he let himself out of his locker. He ran down the hall towards their meeting spot.
When he got there, he saw Rosalina attaching a long green hose to the faucet of the sink. "Is it ready?"
"Almost," She replied. "Is the hall empty?"
"Yeah, Mr. Carlson just left." Qaasim answered. "So, what'd you tell Nat today?"
"I said that I had to make up a lab and you were studying for an exam." Rosalina said. "I really hate lying to him though."
"Yeah, me too. I just want a break to be normal and be able to actually study not cram 5 minutes before a major test." Qaasim complained.
"Well, this is always a good way to let out all that stress." Rosalina said, handing the hose to him. "Go run it out there."
Qaasim pulled to hose into the hallway, resting it so it would run down hill. "Okay, turn it on."
Rosalina turned the knob on full blast, flicked off her shoes, and rolled the legs of her jeans up. She ran out and greeted Qaasim at the top of their "waterslide." He handed her an intertubes and he sat down on his. He held out his hand and she took it.
"1…2…3!" They counted down. They both pushed off and screamed as they flew down the empty hall. They ran around and went down a ton more times.
"I've always wanted to do that." Nat said.
"Well, don't try. We got detention the next day." Rosalina laughed.
"So, is this were you and Qaasim secretly talked about our relationship?" Nat asked, leaning up against the lockers outside the music room. Rosalina looked down and nodded.
"UGHHHH!" Rosalina screamed. "What do I do?"
"Tell him that it's a once in a lifetime chance to go to Japan." Qaasim consoled her. "He has to understand that you want to go."
"He doesn't care; he's worried that the band will suffer." Rosalina complained. "He doesn't care that I could get my big break there."
"You mean you could actually get a journalism job?" Qaasim asked.
"No, but it will help me get into UCLA or Stanford. Knowing people in the business is always good." Rosalina explained. "And I'll only be gone for 2 months."
"Yeah, but we have a ton of gigs during those two months." Qaasim said.
"What should I do?" Rosalina asked.
"If Nat really is your best friend, he'll want you follow your dreams and go to Japan." Qaasim told her.
"Do you want me to go?" She asked quietly. Qaasim pulled her into a hug.
"Hell yeah I do. But, I'm not your best friend, am I? Nat's the one who really counts." Qaasim said.
"But, what if our relationship suffers?" She worriedly asked.
"It won't happen."
"I should have told you to go." Nat sighed.
"You knew that if I went, you wouldn't be able to live." Rosalina told him. "I'm actually glad I didn't go."
"Why? It would have been awesome." Nat said.
"But, you and the guys wouldn't have been with me." Rosalina said. "And you know I wouldn't be able to say goodbye."
"Don't say the "g" word." Nat pleaded. "Now let's check out the music room and we'll go to our last stop for the night."
They walked into the dark auditorium where the band played so many times; they had a mural of them painted on the wall. Rosalina walked over to her spot in front of David; where she stood every show, playing her heart out.
"Did you know why I put you in this spot?" Nat asked as he sat down next to her.
"No, why?" She asked, even though she had a feeling.
"It was the closest to me." He said with a smile.
"I'm really gonna miss this." Rosalina said.
"I know you are and I'm gonna miss you having here with us." Nat said. "Did you know that Thomas is practicing the bass?"
"Yeah, I'm the one teaching him." Rosalina admitted.
"You are?" Nat asked.
"Yeah, after I applied, he came to me and asked if I would teach him." Rosalina said. "I mean, our bands gotta have a bass player."
"We better go to our last stop. Do you want to leave your mark?" Nat asked, handing her a Sharpie. She took it and went over to the giant painting and signed her name. She also wrote; let many more be musically inspired in this magical place. Then, she ran down the hall to the set of lockers where the band had theirs. Nat pretended like he wasn't watching. She wrote across the green lockers; Learn, laugh and love. But remember whose locker this was. She drew an arrow to her locker.