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Romeo, O Romeo?

Back when he was in high school, Patrick couldn't stand Shakespeare, the Taming of the Shrew being the sole exception—but there was no room for Hamlet, Othello and surely not Romeo & Juliet the "greatest love story of all time!"


In college it didn't change much, he still thought Romeo was the biggest pansy alive and Paris the world's biggest pedophile. He still thought their love was flimsy at best. Who falls in and out of love that quickly? First Rosaline, then Juliet, had the prick lived any longer there would have been a Josephine and a Margaret! But now he sort of got it—just a little. His English 201 class was investigating the tragedy of Romeo & Juliet. Was it really a tragedy, the professor had long ago proposed. The only tragedy Patrick could see was the fact that he had to go over this story again.

And the girls in this English class granted they were slightly younger than him, made him feel like he was back in Padua. "Oh the romance! The passion!"


His attention swayed back to the professor, a small lumpy man, who stood at the front of the class with a distinct frown on his face. Yup, he was definitely back at Padua.

"Since you were so attentive during our discussion, why don't you take up on the next lines!"

He shifted down to his book, not exactly sure where they had been reading, but thankfully the brunette sitting next to him slyly pointed to the verse.

"And shake the yoke of inauspicious stars from this world-wearied flesh. Eyes, look your last. Arms, take your last embrace. And, lips," Patrick paused here to close the book and stared the professor dead in the eye before continuing, "O you the doors of breath, seal with a righteous kiss, a dateless bargain to engrossing death."

He cocked an eyebrow at the man, challenging him for more. The professor frowned but relented and called on the next student.

"Ms. Callaway, if you would continue, please."

Why did he know that by heart? The same reason he knew how to cook birthday cakes, clean a bathroom correctly, and that Tim Gunn co-hosted Project Runway. Leslie Davis, whom he'd befriended in their diaper days, was an English major at San Francisco State University and it was safe to say that she had a thing for dead English poets.

"You've got to get out of this modern day mindset, Pat or you will hate it. Think about the era that Shakespeare was writing in, how love was handled back then."

Patrick snorted. "Please, Leslie, these kids were horny as fuck, and our parents are hypocrites for complaining about us!"

"Now before class ends, I want to turn back to an area that we had to skip yesterday," Patrick's professor continued. "Everyone please turn with me to Act 2, Scene 2 starting with the first verse."

Patrick turned to the page and internally groaned. Shoot me now!

"He jests at scars that never felt a wound. But soft! What light through younder window breaks? It is the east, and Juliet is the sun…"

There was gushing all around him and Patrick couldn't wait until he was relinquished from this hell. Every girl wanted Prince Charming to come to their bedside window. Perhaps even climb a large tower to reach them. Only if you let your hair down Rapunzel.

The fact was he knew there was nothing fun about climbing terraces to reach "Sleeping Beauty". Kat's wall at the Stratford's place had taught him that quick. His first time had been an interesting experience. He'd nearly broken his wrists trying to tell her that he liked her, although the look on Bianca's face when she'd walked in on them had been pretty priceless.

Finally a long bell tone sounded off in the room, signaling the end of class. Patrick grabbed his things and headed to his only sanctuary in this school: the garage.

College hadn't been Patrick's first choice. It was Kat and Leslie bugging him about it in the beginning. Neither of them wanted him to just lounge around while they were at their schools. But all Patrick wanted to do was open a garage. To him, that required no college education. But his first year of work taught him that maybe college could be worth trying. Kat was on the other side of the country, so he wouldn't be seeing her anytime soon and as much as he loved the guys down at the shop, he did miss seeing the few friends that he had.

Like the blonde retard, who was dancing about in the middle of the garage.

"Kirk, man, what the hell?" Patrick laughed.

"Awh, Patty," Kirk laughed. "How was class?"

Patrick shook his head and let the nickname jab go. "Ugh, English."

"Oh cheer up, Romeo. But soft! What light through thou younder window breaks?"

"Oh shut it, will you!"

"Oh don't worry Romeo, I'll be here for all of your woes."

"Seriously, dude, you need to shut the hell up. You look like a retard."

"I think he's up for a sex change!" Jack, another classmate of his, hollered from under a Chevy.

"You suckers are just jealous that you don't have my flow!"

As Patrick rolled his eyes, he felt a familiar buzz in his left pocket. He pulled out his phone and felt the air leave his chest. It wasn't the text message that he had been expecting, but instead a calendar reminder—Kat's birthday to be specific.

"You alright man?" Kirk asked, noticing the shift in Patrick's demeanor.

"Yeah, I'm fine," Patrick answered. He slid the phone back into his pocket. There was no point in dwelling in the past. After all, it had been three months. It was time they got over each other—or really, he got over her. There was no way that she was still pinning over him--not that he actually pined over girls. In anyevent, Kat was probably too worked up over another one of her clossal causes. He'd be an idiot to have thought that this would have never happened. She had plans for her life. She wanted to save the world, and he just wanted to coast through life. They were two different people. No matter how badly he wanted it--if he wanted it, they were always destined to fail.

So he slid under his latest project, a 1970's Mustang and immersed himself in the engine—the only thing left that still seemed to make sense.

He never noticed the people starting to trickle out of the garage and around eight, Patrick reemerged, closing the hood to see Kirk waiting patiently for him.

"What's up man?"

"Grab your coat. You're showering at my place."

"For what?"

"Leslie is sick of your mopping ass, so we're taking you out to the club."

After negotiating—really arguing, with Leslie, the trio settled on a bar not too far from the SFSU campus. It wasn't that Patrick didn't want to hang with his friends, but the fact of the matter was they were dating and while he knew they meant well, sometimes space and silence was a virtue. But Leslie Davis would have none of it. They weren't leaving until he hooked up with somebody.

"So you're advocating one-night stands now," Patrick teased.

"I'm advocating for your sanity. Drastic times call for drastic measures," Leslie snapped before being interrupted by the waitress.

"Is there anything else you need?" the young woman asked. It didn't go unnoticed by anyone at the table who the "you" was addressed to.

"No, we're all good here," Leslie snapped, finally gaining the waitress' attention.

"She was cute," Kirk encouraged, when the waitress had left.

"Not you too," Patrick growled.

"Just talk to her. Get her number. No one is forcing you to have sex."

He looked back over at the retreating waitress. Taking a final swing of his beer, Patrick stood up. "Ah, what the hell."

Her name turned out to be Mandy, and for all intensive purposes she was a good lay, but that didn't help his problem.

Patrick slipped out of Mandy's place in the wee hours of the morning. Happy to be back on his bike, he went with the cool wind, and wasn't surprised when he ended up at the beach. It had been awhile since Patrick had trotted down here. And he knew that a part of that was because of Kat. Oh hell, it is because of Kat.

It was pathetic and he knew it, pinning over some girl who had probably long forgotten about him, but how could he not? Kat was like a breath of fresh air. So pure and real. Feisty, but beautiful. Everything else in comparison was dulled. Kat was like a drug and he was addicted.

He wandered to the very shore and let his mind wander. His thoughts kept surfacing back to his English lesson, and he played with the thoughts of the silly romance. What if someone had just knocked some sense into those two and ended their relationship before it began? Surely they'd both still be living. Surely they'd both would have avoided the heartache. Surely…

Patrick sighed loudly and leaned back into the sand. What if Juliet had called for Romeo on that balcony and he never came?

"O Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo?"

Surely, he knew the feeling.

You know, I'm really not a big fan of Romeo & Juliet or Shakespeare for that matter, but this worked a lot better than I thought it would. Thanks for all of your previous reviews. I really do loves those so keep 'em coming. I do have some bad news, my computer has recently fallen ill, we're not sure if it's a virus (cross your fingers that it's not) but I'm not 100% sure when the next updates for Brown & Beyond or In the Sky with Diamonds will come. But while you're waiting, if you haven't, you should definitely check out In the Sky with Diamonds and hopefully I'll be back with little damage. :)

Sneak Peak: "So tell me Patrick," she said with a ghostly smile, "what is it that you're really afraid of?"

Much Love,

Santiva Potter