Just a little AU novel I decided to write for fun after a discussion with a friend. This is just a sneak peek at what I actually have, because right now it`s 40,000 words and only Seven chapters long. :o And I have to write 16 more chapters and this is only the rough draft!
Later chapters will reveal that this is rated T for a reason. Sexual innuendos and themes, some mild language, child abuse, and angst.
And now for the better descpristion.
Avalon High- A SPAMalot AU. Gwen Ramirez is the new girl at Avalon High School. And like any new girl, she`s trying to fit in. And it`s not helping that she has a heart throb on the super popular boy - Arthur Kingsly. But she`s not the only one with issues. Robin Kelsey is trying to put on the school musical of "Fiddler on the Roof" and keep his sanity intact. Lance Cockburn has to live with his psycho girlfriend Elaine but yet has a secret blossoming romance with someone else. Herbert Swampcastle is struggling to come out to the closet to his conservative Republican (and often abusive) father. Connor Bedevere is trying NOT to blow up the science lab this year. And Lucky Conell HAS NO DATE TO PROM. Follow a year in the life of these juniors at AVALON HIGH.
Gwen Ramirez is the new girl at Avalon High School. And like any new girl, she`s trying to fit in. And it`s not helping that she has a heart throb on the super popular boy - Arthur Kingsly.
But she`s not the only one with issues. Robin Kelsey is trying to put on the school musical of "Fiddler on the Roof" and keep his sanity intact. Lance Cockburn has to live with his psycho girlfriend Elaine but yet has a secret blossoming romance with someone else. Herbert Swampcastle is struggling to come out to the closet to his conservative Republican (and often abusive) father. Connor Bedevere is trying NOT to blow up the science lab this year. And Lucky Conell HAS NO DATE TO PROM.
Follow a year in the life of these juniors at AVALON HIGH.
Chapter One: New Beginnings
Herbert Swampcastle tentatively walked down the stairs into the living room, praying that his father was either still asleep or wallowing in a hangover. If he was one of those, at least he wouldn`t have to face confrontation with him and thus ruining the Herbert`s first morning of his Junior year.
Herbert sniffed, getting a strong smell the aroma of cigarettes, coffee, and breakfast-strudel warming in the toaster as he turned the corner through an archway into the kitchen. There, sitting at the old, scratched, and nearly busted kitchen table was his father. The ruddy face man was sipping his "New York Yankees" mug and skimming through the Politics section of The Wall Street Journal. Herbert eyed the ash-tray sitting onto of the comic, already loaded with a butt.
"`Moring, Father," Herbert greeted, summoning all the chipper energy he could scrounge for his father and at this early hour. He took his hands out of his pine-green sweatshirt that had "Camp Walden: A Summer Tradition Since 1934" printed in white. He fixed a few golden curls. "Sleep well?"
The father gave an unintelligible grunt, flipping one page. "Shouldn`t you be at school?" He grumbled, eyebrows furrowing into a scowl as he added, "And out of my hair?"
"School doesn`t start until eight `o'clock," Herbert informed his father, skidding to the marble isle. "Robin`s picking me up." Herbert`s father didn`t seem to care, so he didn`t waste his energy giving a response. "In his new car," Herbert continued. "He just got it yesterday, you know. Remember how I asked you if I could go to the dealership with him? But you said I had to unpack. "Herbert gave a nod to a few cartons laying on the kitchen`s floor, labeled "Kitchen Stuff" in red permanent ink. "He also got a new C.D. I think it`s Clay Aiken`s new release or some musical. I dunno. He has like every Broadway musical soundtrack. You should see his C.D. rack. It`s gigantic-"
Ding! Two toaster strudels poked their way up through the slits of the toaster. Mr. Swampcastle set his newspaper down, grabbed his empty coffee mug, and got out of his chair to retrieve his breakfast and hopefully shut his son`s one sided conversation down. He took a paper-plate from a pile by the toaster, picked up the strudel pair without wincing at their heat. Finally, he snatched the icing packets that he accordingly sat by the toaster and frosted them in no particular way.
Herbert licked his lips enviously. "Do we have anymore strudel?" He asked, leaning on the isle and kicking his slippered feet like a child.
"No." The father plainly answered, but pulled out a box of Pop-tarts from the cupboard from above. He snatched one and threw it at his son. The Pop-tart skidded over the isle`s slick marble top and fell onto the floor. "We`re out."
"Oh," Herbert sighed, obviously disappointed at the option for breakfast. He bended over and picked the clearly broke Pop-tart up from the ground. He unwrapped it. "Do we only have Cinnamon?" He asked, staring at the broken, brown dusted breakfast pastry.
"Yes." Mr. Swampcastle took the coffee pot and poured himself a second helping of the black liquid. He swung it down in one gulp.
Herbert sighed once more took the broken Pop-tart to the toaster and popping one half into each slot. While they were toasting, he walked to the fridge and pulled out the vast jug of Sunny-D to pour into a blue glass cup.
"What the hell are those for?" The father seethed, noticing his son`s choice in foot appeal. There, on Herbert, where (what his father thought at least) pink monstrosities. Herbert`s slippers where fuzzy and unbelievably feminine, touched with a little light pink pom-pom.
"What`s wrong with them?" Herbert asked, looking innocently down at his shoes and kicking them cutely. "What`s wrong with them?" Mr. Swampcastle echoed. "What`s right with them, is the question! Herbert, I demand you take those off and throw them in the garbage."
"But why?" Herbert whined. He truly adored these slippers. They were a bargain as well. He bought them for only five dollars at Payless.
"God, Herbert. . ." Henry ran his hand through what little there was of his balding mud-colored hair. "We`ve been over this with that shirt you wanted to buy! Pink makes you look like a friggin`-"
An exhausted sounding horn blared through the open window. It was Robin.
Saved by the horn, Herbert thought, swigging down the Sunny-D from the glass, grabbing the piping hot Pop tart in his hand. Quickly, he ran through the kitchen to the front door, kicked off his slippers and slunk on his checkered Vans. He pulled his backpack from where he had set it the night before and placed it on his shoulders. However, before he did that, he snuck the slippers into the front pocket of the bag. "Goodbye!" Herbert called, pulling the door open and shut.
"Hey!" He could hear Robin yell.
Herbert was blinded by early September sun-shine that was a sharp contrast from his dull and dark house. He blinked quickly, but when he could finally see, he noticed a green colored Grand Pree parked out in the front of the house behind his father`s gigantic SUV.
"Nice wheels," Herbert remarked, walking down the cement pathway to greet Robin. Though that was a bit of a stretch, because the car looked to be at least fifteen years of age and it was a bit dented up. From the window, he could see Robin`s smirk on his face.
"I know?" Robin said proudly, stroking the ripped fabric of the passenger seat lovingly. "Paid every penny for it. I consider it a late Sweet-Sixteenth present to myself. Sure, it`s not Lucky`s BMW, but it`s still a car."
"That`s so cool," Herbert admired, ducking into the car, sitting in the passenger seat, and placing his bag on the floor. He grabbed the seat-belt and securely fastened it. "I wish my father would even let me get my driver`s license, or at least a permit."
"He`ll have to someday" Robin said. He pulled two strange objects out from the pocket of his green jacket. "Here," he said, offering one to Herbert. It was a pair of cheap-looking sunglasses. In fact, they still had the ninety nine sticker stuck to their lenses. "Put these on."
"Why?" Herbert question, awkwardly looking at the glasses and then at Robin.
"We are officially cool. We have a car."
Herbert couldn`t help but give a "Are you serious?" look to Robin, but he giggled and obediently put the sun-glasses on as his best friend did the same. They turned to face each other. Robin gave two thumbs up while Herbert gave a silly looking face of approval. Both couldn`t suppress their laughter.
"Okay," Robin said, starting the engine of the car back up and pulling out of park carefully. At once the C.D. started at tract two, and Summer Nights blared through the speakers.
"Grease. How suitable," Herbert laughed. Robin nodded as he drove past the Cattail Way street sign. "I thought we`d kick off the school year with it." He rounded the corner and down Crane Drive. Silence followed for a moment, both enjoying the music. Herbert nibbled on the still quite warm Pop-tart pieces.
"Thanks for coming to camp with me again, Robin," Herbert said, facing forward to the road. "I was so glad that you wanted to be a counselor."
"Well it did help me get this car, and I had a cool time hanging out with you this summer." Robin tightened his grip on the wheel, and drove through the large, rough iron gates of the community. All of a sudden, the tone went far more serious than it was previously. "Did you tell him yet?"
Herbert shook his head. "Robin I don`t have the courage to yet. It`s certain death."
Robin nodded while getting on the main stretch of road. "You don`t have to tell him, Herbert. Not now, at least. Maybe you could wait until college. . ."
"No!" Herbert interjected. "I know he`s going to kill me. But it`s killing me NOT to tell him, Robin. I feel dishonest. He has a right to know."
A brief pause of silence followed, the only noise was the Grease soundtrack still rambling. "He does," Robin said at last, expelling air. "But Herbert, until you tell him, please don`t make it obvious."
"I won`t" Herbert promised. He turned on his side, peering out the window. In the distance he could see the intimidating grey-stone building looming over several low trees. There, was Avalon High, waiting for the brand new school year to start. Robin turned and pulled into a decent parking spot that was not too far from the school. Grabbing his keys and shutting off the car he turned to his best friend asking, "You ready for this?"
Herbert sighed. "As ready as I`ll ever be."
Gwen Ramirez dodged her way through a sea of students, timidly looking around for the Gym room. She tucked a black springy curl behind her ear; a habit she found herself doing when she was nervous.
It was her first day at Avalon High School and sure, she had been oriented by the dashingly handsome boy who helped with acquainting new students and she did have a brief orientation two weeks before school was planned to start for the year, but like every new girl she felt like she had been thrown into the lion`s pen at the zoo. Her stomach turned with anxiety and a yearning for the way it was last year.
God, you`d think I would of gotten used to being the new girl, she told herself, bending her hip to not bump into a passionately making out couple who leaned against a locker.
It was true. Gwen had moved five times in her life. Once from San Antino, Texas to Tucson, Arizona when she was little; so young in-fact, she barely remembered it. Another move came when she was three to Las Vegas, Nevada. The biggest move came when she finished Kindergarten, all the way to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The next move wasn`t nearly as drastically far, but it was a much different setting. From going from big cities to a small town not very far from New York City, in fact. That was when she was in sixth grade, going into Middle School. She had been extremely fortune not to move at all during Middle School, nor the first two years of High School.
But her dad had to get moved to a new location this year. Just when Gwen had settled comfortably into the town and knew most of the people there, she had to be dragged to a place that was completely different.
Make the best of this was the chant she told herself as she prided herself from her bed in preparation for school. You can do it. It will be okay.
Hopefully it would be.
"Crap," she audibly cursed, still searching for class. Gwen tugged on the strap of her aquamarine tote-bag with insecurity. Where was this gym and why hadn`t she received a map?
She had to resort to asking for directions. "Excuse me," she tapped the nearest boy on-the shoulder. He was of short stature and clad in a simple blue and white polo with jeans. His head was topped with messy- mud hued hair. When he turned, Gwen noticed that around his neck was a golden Star of David chain necklace. "Yes?" He asked, jolting back a few steps.
"Hi- I`m uh, kind of lost," Gwen told him. "Could you help me? I need to find the gym."
A smile worked its way onto his face. "New to Avalon, right?" The boy asked. "Coincidentally, I`m going to Gym this period, as well. I`ll show you."
"Thanks," Gwen flushed violently as he motioned the way down the hall. She got a greater hold on her books. "I really appreciate it-"
"Patsy," he answered promptly. "Patsy Weinstein. And no problem. What`s your name?"
"Gwen Ramirez," was the simple answer, but he opted in explaining the rest." Well, actually my full name is Guinevere but I go by Gwen."
"Nice to me you, Gwen," Patsy said as the made a stop infornt of three sets of doors. He pointed to the large, center double-door. "That`s the main Gym, the girls locker room is on the right and the boys on the left. I`ll see you inside." And with that, he departed for the left-side door and Gwen for the right. "Thank you," Gwen called after him as he vanished inside the locker room and she returned to the girls door.
When she opened the door, most of the other girls where in varying stages of dress; some with all their gyms clothes on, some missing a top or bottom. She turned away from them, seeing that down a mini stretch of hallway was an office.
She walked casually to the door and knocked twice. At once the door swung open by a woman who looked to be in early twenties, dressed in a black with silver trim work-out suit. "Hello," she greeted in an unusually chipper sounding voice.
"Hi, I`m new here," Gwen stated, for at least the thousandth time in her life.
"Oh good! Glad you came to my office first," She pulled the door much wider, and exited in order to make longer conversation with the girl. "Well today we have a ten minute orientation for the sake of new-people and then the rest of the time we`ll have a dodgeball game. Do you have your change of clothes?"
Gwen nodded, knowing that Avalon High School required students to wear a pair of black shorts and grey tee shirt with their names printed on it. "Go change then," the gym teacher instructed, pointing to where the other girls where gathered. "But I need your name first."
"Gwen Rameriz," Gwen felt like a robot, having to repeat her name the entire day.
"You have locker 153."
Gwen obeyed and went straight to the locker, opening it and stuffing her backpack inside. She tore it open and grabbed the pair of Adidas pants and crumpled tee with "G. Ramirez" written in her own handwriting.
"You`re new here, right?" A voice asked. Gwen at first questioned where the voice was coming from, but she saw that standing right besides, opening the door of locker 152, was another girl. She wasn`t very pretty looking, with a round plump face and small, almost pig-like, leaky light-blue eyes. She wasn`t slender in any definition of the word. Her hair was long, falling behind her back, and hued and somewhat ugly shade of dirty blonde.
"Yeah," Gwen answered stepping out of her Chuck Taylors and pushing them aside with on foot. "I am."
The girl grabbed the end of her own shirt and tore it off reviling her lacy champagne colored bra. She tossed the shirt in the locker and grabbed for the change of clothing within the unit. "So where are you from?"
"Lakeview," Gwen promptly answered, pulling on her gym shorts and tying the little black strings into a little bow. The girl froze like an ice cube, looking at Gwen as though she was jading her. "Lakeview?" She echoed.
"Yes, Lakeview High," Gwen repeated, unsure why the girl was so critical of the school. The heavy-set girl finally said "Did you know the only reason Avalon High has NOT had an undefeated season for nearly 6 years was because of Lakeview?"
"Well I didn`t really go to football games," Gwen said, wishing they were talking about something else than the fact that Lakeview`s team always kicked any team thrown at the theme's butt. "So, um, how long have you been in this town?" She tried to change the subject, looking around the locker room for inspiration for conversation.
"All my life," The girl answered, getting on the ground to tie her green Converse Hi-tops. "And just as a warning, the tacos are NOT edible here."
Gwen couldn`t help but give a small laugh, recalling how God-awful Lakeview`s food was as well. "Well, if it helps, Lakeview wasn`t known for its food ether."
"LET`S GO LADIES!" They could hear the gym teacher call from the doorway. Gwen was just about to walk away, when the girl said. "Lucky Conell."
"My name`s Lucky Conell." She extended a fat little hand to shake. Gwen accepted it and said "Gwen Ramirez." They left for the gym, where the boys off the gym class where already sitting (for the most part) on the large bleachers against the right wall. The hall echoed with their nonsense chatter and yelling. On the far wall, Gwen could see a gigantic painting of a knight on horseback, sword in hand. Beneath that, in large and somewhat fancy script, read Avalon High School: Fight For Right!
It was official; she was now an Avalon Knight.
Gwen took a spot by Lucky who was now swarmed by three other girls, all giggling like lunatics about something. She couldn`t hear what it was, for the other conversations droned it out.
"QUIET!" Order the male teacher, standing directly beside the woman. In contrast, he was much older, the wispy hairs onto of his head where snow-white and underneath his coordinating black suit he had quite a bit of a beer belly.
The crowd only slightly followed instructions, because Gwen still heard faint whispers of conversation from behind her. "Now that I have your attention, I`d like to welcome you to another FANTASTIC year here at Avalon High School. For those who don`t know me, I am Coach Innes, you`re gym teacher for the year and the coach of the Avalon Knights. . ."
He seemed to drone on and on and on with explaining everything, that the ten minute orientation seemed to take up all forty-five minutes of class. Lucky was still talking about something to the three other girls and faint giggling could heard from them.
"Alright!" He said with much more enthusiasm, jolting the class back to life. "Let`s finish up class with a game of dodge ball!" Several moans, including one from Lucky, where audible. But Coach Innes didn`t seemed to care and ordered them to line up on the other side of the gym against the wall. They scurried to follow his demand.
"Cockburn! Pendragon!" Innes called with clipboard in hand. Two boys stepped forward. "You get to pick the teams."
"Way to go, selecting the best athletes in the school to choose teams," Lucky said, leaning against the black base wall of the gymnasium. But Gwen didn`t hear, for her eyes were glued on the two boys. Lucky turned and saw Gwen`s look of heart-throb spreading across the face rapidly. Lucky gave a smirk and raise a thin eyebrow. "They`re hot, aren`t they?"
Gwen nodded approvingly and said "Oh yeah." The one had sort of a Mediterranean air about him, with his tanned skin and spiky dark-brown hair. He was far more muscular than the other and Gwen could see faintly under his Under Armor shirt a well shaped six-pack.
"Good news for you, Arthur Pendragon is single," Lucky said, motioning with her head to the one on the right. He was dreamy looking, like he came right out of an ad for an expensive teen clothing brand. With his almost golden brown hair falling down to his noble-looking brow and storm-grey hued eyes scanning over the rest of the gym, Gwen could help but smile. "But he`s also the most wanted," Lucky added. "In all the years Arthur`s been here, he hasn`t dated one girl. Which is kind of strange for him being so popular. As you can imagine, he`s like the holy grail for every desperate girl without a boyfriend here." She sighed heavily, her eyes focusing on the boy. "Including myself.
"Lance Cockburn on the other hand, has a girlfriend named Elaine. But she`s kind of. . . protective. She makes sure we`re all at least ten feet away from him at all times."
Arthur made the first pick calling "Bedivere!" A tall, almost chubby looking young man with wavy black hair and dashing blue eyes walked over to Arthur and gave him a high-five. But under the man`s arm was a book.
"This whole thing is a popularity contest," Lucky stated, pushing a strand of hair that fell in front of her vision aside and tucking it behind her ear. ""If you can`t throw a ball to save your life, you're the last of the heap."
Lance was next and called for a boy called Dennis Galahad, who had longish blonde hair and eyes as green as spring-grass. Arthur chose Patsy, who saw Gwen in the crowd and gave her a weak smile. "The only reason Arthur chooses Bedivere, who voluntarily gets out so he can read his book, is because they`ve been friends since pre-K," Lucky explained.
More and more people where called, and soon the only four people left was a boy hopelessly lost in a sea of fabric of his gym class with a head of springy golden curls, a trim one with fire red hair, Lucky and Gwen.
"I`ll pick…." Lance was in thought for a moment pointing at the red-head, forgetting the boy's name. "Robin" another boy prompted. "Robin." The boy walked to the group and shuffling towards the back. Arthur looked puzzled, rubbing his hand on his chiseled chin. "I`ll take Lucky," he said.
Lucky violently grabbed for Gwen`s arm and hoisted it up. "Gwen and I are a double pack!" She announced. "You get both of us."
"Fine by me," Arthur said, though he was clearly a bit pleased with that, because he gave a blinding smile to Gwen, who felt her cheeks turn scarlet. "You`re on my team," Lance called to the curly one, though he didn`t know his name so he just left it at that.
Somehow when the game started, Gwen found herself looking at Arthur more than actually participating. He was so able-bodied – it seemed like he spent all summer conditioning for something. His bronzed with a tan skin showed that might have been a possibility.
A ball flew her way and she caught it while Arthur was looking. A smile flashed across his face as the coach blew his whistle and motioned for the player to go sit back on the bleachers. "Nice catch," was the only thing Arthur said, before throwing a ball towards one player.
If she wasn`t blushing beforehand, it was apparent now more than ever. "Thanks," she mumbled, hoping to the side to avoid another ball, which landed on the ground a bounced a few feet.
At that moment, the bell rang for class to be switch, and the coaches gave loud, long blows of their whistle. "Game over, Pendragon team wins," Innes announced. "Class dismissed."
Like a herd of cattle, they all filed in towards the doors of the locker rooms, occasionally kicking balls further in front of them instead of picking them up. "Hey," Lucky called to Gwen. "Do you want to sit at my table for lunch?"
Gwen didn`t hesitate, having been offered the something many a time at her first day at new schools. "Sure thing."