Hey Guys and Gals! :) So this is my first attempt at a fan fiction (well at least one I am willing to show people), and would love if you'd let me know what you think. So read and review please!

Also, I sadly do not own anything to do with 10 Things I hate About You.

Note: Anything centered and in italics are thoughts of the character. Just so you know. (:


It's Just A Cold

His father used to always say that a man who was brought down by sickness, should stay down. But did he truly understand what it was like? For the man who said this every time his son complained about a headache, or a belly-ache, rarely even felt the effects of a spring cold sniffle. Forgetting those memories of childhood flue's and colds, they became only a sign of weakness to him. But he truly had no idea. He didn't know what it was like to wake up day after day in a body that wanted nothing more than to cause its tenant pain. But his son did. Oh boy, did he ever. Thankfully his drunk of a father was no longer around to remind him of the weakness that he was showing.

But those years of lectures and rants were still fresh in the young adults mind as he woke up for what felt like the 30th day groaning against the sickness he was feeling. And just like the past few mornings, this action is immediately regretted as his body is wracked with a wave of painful and powerful coughs. Later when his mind clears and he is able to think without too much pain, he will realize that this attack is the worst one yet.

But for now, he curls into himself, wrapping his weak arms around his torso as he opens his eyes slowly.

Why does the sun have to be so bright?

Ignoring the protest coming from his head, he turns towards the alarm clock sitting beside his bead.

7:28. The alarms going off in two minutes. Dam.

And when it does, he slowly moves his body and goes through the rituals of getting ready school. But it seems like each day they are getting harder and harder. Still, as he tells him self each day: its just a cold.

But one that has lasted for nearly a month. Causing him to feel weaker and weaker each week, and have nose bleeds that last so long, that by time he gets them to stop he is to weak to move from his position on the bathroom floor. Just a few days ago he fell after one of these nose bleeds, hitting his arm on the bathroom sink. A corner shaped bruise showing wear it made contact.

And just like the other bruises he has gotten from simple trips and falls, they last longer than any he has ever had before. As he changes his shirt, he grazes his fingers across his side where a large round bruise can be seen, this was acquired after tripping on a step going up to his bedroom on day. A day two weeks ago. Two weeks. And it still looks like new.

Wrenching his hand away from the bruise, he throws on a black t-shirt quickly over his pale torso. Hiding his worry underneath its thin fabric. But it only comes back as he pulls on a clean pair of jeans, easily noticing just how loose they were becoming as he grabs a belt from his dresser.

Pushing these worries to the back of his mind, with his back pack hanging lazily over his shoulder, he quietly walks down the carpeted stairs. Then like habit, he grabs the nearly empty bottle of aspirin sitting on the kitchen counter.

Right, I have to remember to pick some up after school.

Popping a few in his mouth, he slips some into his jean pocket, just in case he finds the need to take some during school.

School. Does he really want to go? With the way he is feeling, he could easily stay home without a care and sleep this ridiculous school day away. But for some reason, he feels as though he has to go. Not for the information that is forced into his head, nor the ridiculous attention seeking class-mates that do nothing more than annoy the shit out of him. But it may have to do with the open-minded brunette that has haunted his dreams since the first day she walked into his school. Into his life. He can't stop thinking about her. Even through his sickened clouded mind, he see's her face. Constantly.

Yeah, she's why he gets up each day, no matter how sick he feels. Just seeing her mocking smile makes the pain go away, even for a little while.

Quickly opening the fridge door, he downs a few mouth full's of cough medicine. Doing this, he hopes that the pain he experiences each time he breaths will just go away for a while. So he can get through school, then get home so he can forget about just how worried he is getting. For he knows this is not like any other cold he has ever had, its much more. But still, he has never liked doctors.

So continuing the rest of his routine, he grabs an apple he knows he will never eat from the counter as he walks slowly to the living room, fighting down another painful cough causing his to slouch slightly. Once the feeling is gone, he continues towards the sleeping form taking up the dark brown cough set against the far wall. Making sure she is sleeping and breathing deeply, he takes the half empty bottle of foul smelling liquid from he skinny hands. Setting it aside, he brushes the hair from her face.

Jesus Mom. Aren't you tired of all this yet?

That's another reason he refuses to admit to himself that its not just a cold taking over his body. His mom. His weak and fragile, drunk of a mother, who spends her days drowning her self with a nice bottle of Jack. Ever since his father left, this has been her only escape. No matter how much her son needs her, or yells at her. She doesn't need any more pain, or worry. She doesn't need to get the thought in her head that she is loosing a nothing male in her life.

Stop thinking that, its not like I am dieing or anything. So just, shut up.

With an angry growl, he pushing him self up, stumbling at first when his weak legs protests. Steadying himself against the arm of the couch, he takes deep breaths, as deep as his angry lungs will allow. But still, he feels more coughs making their way up his throat. So as quickly as his body would allow, he grabs the bottle he previously sat down, and takes it to the kitchen. Just making it into the door way before another wave of coughs wrack his body.

Blinking against the black spots taking over his vision, he slowly sits down on the tile floor as the coughs begin to slow down. For a few minutes he stays there. Ignoring the burning pain in his throat and chest, ignoring the pounding in his head, and ignoring the flow of snot coming out of his nose. All in all, ignoring everything that puts a damper on the happiness he has felt ever since the pretty brunette first yelled at him. He wont let anything mess up the feelings he hasn't felt in so long, for Kat is special. Nothing can ruin that.

So once he can see clearly and his breathing has became normal again, he slowly gets up rubbing his sore chest. Eying the still sleeping women on the couch, he grabs the box of tissue from the top of fridge and wipes away the snot aggressively. Stuffing a handful of the white material into the pocket of his leather jacket as he grabs it from the kitchen table and quietly walks out the door. Out towards the bike he knows he's getting too weak to drive. To go to the school he knows he's getting too sick to even think about. But he knows if he doesn't go, he will be admitting to himself that he's ill. And Verona's don't get sick. At least, that is what his father always said.

But still, he goes. Because, what can he say, even if he is sick, its just a cold.


So I got the idea for this story when I watched Ethan Peck's film Tennessee for the first time. I thought it would be interesting to explore the idea of his character in 10 Things I Hate About You going through a similar situation, so I though I'd give it a try. I hope you like it so far, and if I get a good response I will continue. So R&R! :D

Also, I am sorry for any mistakes or errors you may have found, I tried to fix it up as best as I could. Remember, this is my first story, So any response good AND bad would be loved.

Thank You

-EgonMesser