A/N: So this is my first fanfiction so please be gentle! However I gladly accept review and criticism, that's the only way I could've made it through 4.5 years of nursing school, so review negatively or positively away! This is my oneshot of a Harold and Rhonda pairing from Hey Arnold and my first creative creation in 3.5 years so sorry if it's a little lacking or rusty? Read and review and always enjoy! :)
Disclaimer: I don't own any of the lovely Hey Arnold characters-they belong to Craig Bartlett!
Rendezvous in the Janitor Closet
Rhonda Wellington Lloyd sat in her geometry class and vaguely wondered if the class would be over soon. She glanced up at the clock that sat above Mrs. Grave's desk and was sad to see that there were at least ten minutes left. Mrs. Graves was notorious for running to the last minute and not giving the homework assignment until just moments before the bell rang. She hated geometry, but math of course was required for three years during the four year span of high school, and this was only Rhonda's second year so that meant that she needed another horrible year of math. She had heard rumors of terror about the Algebra 2 class…
Nadine doesn't even have this class with me…of course SHE had to test higher than me. Uck, Rhonda thought to herself angrily. She looked around her class to gaze at the individuals in her class. Stinky, Sid, and Harold were all somewhere near the back not paying a bit of attention. Rhonda rolled her eyes, now there was a group of dummies. She was surprised they'd even made it into Geometry, she was certain they would still be stuck in Algebra.
Harold glanced up from whatever gossip he had been whispering to Sid and Stinky and gazed at Rhonda. There was a look in his eyes that suddenly made Rhonda feel a slight blush rise in her cheeks. Quickly, Rhonda turned her head to the front to look at Mrs. Graves. Mrs. Graves was lost in some problem that involved sin, cos, and tan so there really was no point in paying attention since her lectures rarely made sense to Rhonda.
Looking down, Rhonda gazed at her perfectly manicured nails and the pretty red nail polish that seemed to smile at her. Oh how she'd rather be getting a new manicure or pedicure then sit through another one of these terrible lectures. It seemed this class would never end.
Somewhere outside of the classroom Rhonda heard an angry hollar in the distance and raised her ear just slightly to get a better listen. Maybe it was Big Patti about to pound some poor freshman, although that really wasn't her style. Or perhaps it was Wolfgang and there was a particular geeky student that was in the wrong place at the wrong time. That was his style. But then Rhonda heard one word and she instantly knew who was out in the hall yelling.
"Criminy!" The voice of Helga G. Pataki shouted from the hall. Rhonda rolled her eyes and knew that Helga was out in the hall for some reason causing problems for some poor sap; probably Arnold Shortman. He always seemed to be the brunt of her assaults, and while Rhonda and everyone else knew that Helga was a bully and one not to be trifled with, Rhonda couldn't help but wonder if there was something going on between the two. In fact lately Rhonda had seen the two in the hall a lot together, although they were frequently fighting and yelling there was some sort of tension that she could sense between the two…it reminded her a lot of her relationship with Har—
"Rhonda, what is the solution to this problem?" Mrs. Graves abruptly asked.
Rhonda looked up, shaken from her thoughts and stared at the problem, completely clueless. How she wished she was in her French class. That actually made sense.
"Well Mrs. Graves, that would be uh, errr, you see," Rhonda was suddenly cut off as the bell blared overhead and Rhonda thanked her lucky stars that she didn't have to answer.
Collecting her things Rhonda stood up and left that class thinking she would have to get whatever assignment there was from someone in the class. That shouldn't be hard, after all she was the queen of getting what she wanted. She was high school royalty and only a sophomore!
The hall was busy with students shuffling about heading off to lunch. Rhonda skirted past most of the students but did take notice of Helga stomping down the hall with a scowl plastered across her face. Arnold seemed to be heading after her with a look of determination on his face, which didn't really surprise Rhonda at all. She simply rolled her eyes and spun in her locker combination.
Harold brushed past her and she felt her head turn to gaze at his swiftly moving form. He certainly wasn't the most handsome boy in school, but he certainly was skilled in football. Only 16 and already the high school QB. That did impress her. She gazed at his passing form and a small smile came to her lips as she watched his shoulders move under his shirt, his backsides ripple with every step. He was just a fine specimen—
"Rhonda! How was geometry? I know you hate that class and I know that the things you've been discussing lately can be challenging. They certainly were for me when I was in geometry. Just remember, I can help you with your homework anytime," Nadine suddenly appeared and gushed at her. She continued, "I love to help you, I just don't want to be the one doing it like last time."
Rhonda blinked at her; momentarily struck with stupidity as her thoughts had once again been interrupted. Why did it seem that everyone interrupted her thoughts? That was getting annoyed. She was Rhonda Wellington Lloyd! She may be having private thoughts, but people should know when she was having a personal mental moment!
"Nadine, can't you see that I'm in the middle of something?" Rhonda said in a sing song voice with her nose in the air.
Nadine rolled her eyes at Rhonda. "Sorry Rhonda. I just wanted to talk to you, and see if you were ready for lunch. Brandon will be there you know," she winked at that last bit.
"Oh yes," Rhonda replied and thought about Brandon Blue. Brandon Blue was one of the most attractive boys in school, and he was a senior and was dating Rhonda. She liked this most of the time, but got sick of his lack of knowledge when it came to fashion or social success. While he was hot, he wasn't exactly couth, and Rhonda was extremely couth! Still, since he was the most attractive and popular boy in school Rhonda was glad to have him by her side…most of the time. Her eyes wandered in the direction Harold had gone and once again she was lost in thought.
"So you ready Rhonda?" Nadine asked with a smile.
Though Rhonda would've liked to keep staring off in Harold's direction she shook herself free of those thoughts and said, "Of course Nadine!"
The cafeteria was always loud and obnoxious. Rhonda always hated it. However, unlike the majority of the other students Rhonda was free from the disgusting cafeteria food. She had a gourmet lunch of sushi and slices of pineapple today. Rhonda always had unique and delicious lunches that most of the other students could only dream about.
As she delicately placed one of the pineapple bits into her mouth Rhonda looked around the cafeteria. Everyone had their little cliques and she was of course no exception. The most popular individuals always sat at Rhonda's table while everyone else with their cliques sat somewhere else. At the table farthest from her, Sid, Stinky, Gerald, Arnold, and Peapod Kid sat. They always seemed to group and eat together and normally they were the only ones there. However, Rhonda had noticed that Helga and Phoebe had moved to the table, and while they didn't exactly sit side by side with the boys they sat near them. Helga and Phoebe were stationed at the very end of the table always quietly speaking to each other. Rhonda couldn't help but wonder why they had moved from their usual table near her where Lila and others sat. Distantly Rhonda wondered if it had anything to do with Arnold. Probably not.
Rhonda shot a glance at a round table at the far end of the cafeteria where Thaddeus, aka Curly sat. She cringed inwardly. He always sat at that table with one or two other complete wackos and could be seen staring at her frequently. He never got over his obsession with her. She was starting to think he never would.
As Rhonda watched Curly, he looked up and gave her a delusional smile and waved at her. She quickly whipped her head in the other direction only to see Nadine and Brandon come her way.
"Hey Rhonda! Brandon and I met up in the line and decided to walk on over together," Nadine said with a smile on her face.
"Hey babe," Brandon said and smiled in the sexy yet clueless way he did.
"Hi guys," Rhonda said and smiled. She took a sip of her SmartWater with her pinky raised.
Nadine and Brandon sat down next to her, with Brandon sliding into the seat right beside her and casually slinging an arm around the back of her chair. She could feel his leg encircle her own. He loved Rhonda's legs.
"So football practice is at 3:15 today, what time is your cheer practice hot lips?" Brandon asked and gave Rhonda a mushy smile. Rhonda couldn't help but feel herself slightly cringe at his eagerness. Rhonda was all about subtlety. Or so she liked to think.
"Oh, cheer practice starts at 3:45 today, Brandon…and we are actually starting to practice indoors since it's getting a little bit cold," she said absent mindedly.
"Awh, to bad babe, we were gonna run some awesome plays today…and you know I just love to watch you strut your stuff out there," Brandon said with a wink.
As he said this Rhonda felt her attention shift to the boy approaching their table. It was Harold. He had started sitting with them when he had become the QB and while Rhonda had a fuss about it when it had first started, she actually liked that he was there. Hearing Brandon mention her 'strutting her stuff' made her wonder if Harold ever watched her strut her stuff. She blushed then recalling a moment from yesterday afternoon…
"Hey guys! I was so hungry today I just couldn't wait to get to lunch," Harold called as he neared the table.
Brandon smiled at him and said, "Dude you're always hungry…that's why we call you The Beast."
Harold laughed at this and sat down. He sat across from Rhonda and began eating what appeared to be a ham sandwich. Not once did he glance at Rhonda while he ate, and Rhonda felt herself grow slightly irritated. Everyone looked at Rhonda Wellington Lloyd! There were no exceptions. Rhonda leaned forward then hoping to snag his gaze as she batted her eyes at him. Of course the oblivious Brandon was completely unaware of this as he continued shoving greasy French fries into his mouth. Nadine blabbered on about classifying beetles or some other insect in her biology class. Harold raised his eyes to Rhonda, and she felt her breath briefly catch in her throat. There was a look in his eyes, she'd seen it before; she knew the look.
However, a shout from across the cafeteria caused everyone at Rhonda's table to stop what they were doing. Rhonda turned from her stare with Harold and gazed in the direction of the noise. Across the cafeteria Helga Pataki appeared to have somehow gotten chocolate milk spilled all down the front of her pink blouse. In front of her, stood a very stunned Arnold who was apparently the culprit of the spilled milk. Typical, thought Rhonda. It seemed that Arnold and Helga always had some horrible catastrophe that occurred on a daily basis and never failed to end with Helga stomping off, usually with Arnold in hot pursuit. Honestly they should just be lovers, Rhonda thought to herself as the scene played out.
"Nice going football head. Why don't you stop being so clueless about the world around you and pay attention? Criminy I've never seen such stupidity!" Helga shouted at Arnold, who had wisely taken a few steps away from her.
A few feet away Sid mockingly called out, "Looks like Helga needs some Pamprin for her PMS!" A few of the other boys laughed and snickered. Instantly Helga's attention left Arnold and she set her eyes on Sid.
As Rhonda watched the scene continue to play out she rolled her eyes. Such drama, she never engaged in such stupid quarrels! Beside her, Brandon chuckled and shoved another French fry into his mouth. Rhonda felt slightly disgusted about his gusto for fried foods…she abhorred anything fried!
"You know, that Pataki chick has one hell of a temper! I've never been on the receiving end of one of her blow ups, but damn can she throw a punch!" Brandon said with enthusiasm.
Harold nodded at Brandon's observation. "Yeah Helga is known for her shit fits, I have been on the receiving end of her rants. Not fun," Harold replied thoughtfully.
Brandon just laughed and said, "If she was a dude she'd rock on the football field. Didn't you say you used to play when you were kids? I bet she was good…bet she could knock a few guys out."
Rhonda sighed in annoyance. "Honestly, I don't see your fascination. Helga is just a rude and unsightly girl who happens to go to the same school as us. She has absolutely no class," Rhonda said snidely and took a bite of her pineapple. She looked to Nadine for support but didn't appear to be getting any until Rhonda kicked her under the table.
"Oh yeah, Helga is a nuisance. Loud, rude, obnoxious," Nadine didn't finish her sentence just simply let it hang in the air. Rhonda didn't object.
Across from them Helga had proceeded in grabbing Sid by the collar and threatening to 'punch his lights out'. Of course this was done without any interference from the one or two teachers that drifted around the cafeteria. They'd all seen it before, and knew perhaps more so than the students that Helga was all bark and little or no bite.
"Helga this isn't the way to handle this," Arnold called from behind her. "I spilled milk on you, not Sid, he just made a comment!" Helga made no reply just scowled at Sid all the more and seemed completely poised to strike.
"And now Arnold will say something magical to her and she'll back down in a show of yelling and will storm off…and my bets on Arnold following her," Rhonda stated nonchalantly.
Brandon appeared too focused on the altercation between Helga and Sid to pay attention to Rhonda's words, but Nadine and Harold glanced over at Rhonda briefly, apparently thinking about what she said. Harold nodded in agreement; Rhonda shot a smile his way.
Nadine paused and said, "Come to think of it Rhonda, that is usually how it goes…you think they have a thing for each other?" She added the last portion with excitement.
"One might think so, but I doubt it. Arnold has far too much class to be romantically involved with the likes of Helga G. Pataki," Rhonda replied and began gazing at her nails.
Suddenly they all heard Helga give a great growl of irritation, shot something borderline incoherent at Sid and Arnold and storm off. A few moments later Arnold followed her.
"See," Rhonda simply said and casually looked in Harold's direction. He openly gazed back at her. A faint blush rose to his cheeks.
"Well you were right babe, odd couple, those two," Brandon exclaimed and shrugged closer to Rhonda.
Feeling his advance Rhonda felt herself pull away from him. She shot a meaningful glance at Harold and then stated, "Oh shoot. I just remembered I promised Madame Sher that I would come in at lunch to make a lesson plan for the first year French students. You know, she's so impressed with my French skills that she wants me to teach them sometimes! Honestly, it is such a burden!" Rhonda stood and began backing away, all the while staring into Harold's eyes hoping that he would get her subtle message.
"Well hot lips, if she's referring to your French kissing skills then I understand why she wants you to make the lesson plans," Brandon said playfully and shot Rhonda a wink. At this Rhonda did feel a blush rise to her cheeks. Nadine giggled.
"Uh…huh, funny Brandon," she mumbled and backed away from the able. "But I really do need to go. Nadine I'll see you in class, and Brandon I'll see you after football practice." Slowly Rhonda bent down and planted a quick peck on his cheek and skirted out of the cafeteria. She knew Brandon wouldn't ask questions and just hoped Harold understood what she was trying to get across to him.
As she left the cafeteria she skipped down the hallway to a janitor closet that wasn't far from her fourth hour French class. She was eager to get there because she knew that once she walked in those doors the fun would begin.
Rhonda reached the janitors closet and let a small smile slip to her lips as she stood in front of the oak door with the words 'JANITOR' written across the blurry pane of glass at the top of the door. She reached out for the handle and turned the knob. To her surprise she felt some resistance, which was odd because this door was never locked. Rhonda put more pressure on the door and felt it give. As the door swung open and Rhonda stepped in she stopped in her tracks as she saw Arnold and Helga standing in the closet awkwardly looking away from her. They were close to each other, but not close enough for Rhonda to believe they had been doing something other than talking.
"What the hell are you doing in here?" Rhonda began and then said the only other thing in her mind, "this is my janitor closet! Get your own!" Arnold seemed to be looking more embarrassed by the second but Helga smirked at Rhonda's response.
"Oh what's the matter princess? Got a hot date with somebody? Somebody like…PINK BOY?" Helga mused in a sly tone. Her blue eyes were alight with knowing and Rhonda felt her stomach churn at Helga's knowledge. While she had caught them in a potentially compromising position she was fully aware that Helga was more than capable of ruining Rhonda's reputation if she had the desire to do so.
Quickly Rhonda responded with as much pride and snide as she could muster. "I am NOT meeting Harold, or as you call him pink boy," she stressed this last part. "I simply came to fetch the janitor because someone…uh, puked in the cafeteria."
Helga's smirk only widened and she shoved Arnold out of her way as she walked up to Rhonda. Rhonda was taller than Helga but Helga was more intimidating. Her one angry eyebrow, aggressive posture, and all out lack of consequences attitude made Helga formidable. Despite Rhonda's caution with Helga, she held her ground and met Helga's cold blue eyed stare.
"Alright princess, I'll believe you, but you don't get to have this janitor closet…the janitor isn't in," Helga said with confidence and seemed to grow even more confident with Rhonda's obvious frustration.
Rhonda was about to challenge Helga's statement when Helga interrupted her by saying, "However, if you are in fact in great need of a janitor…closet…then there's one in the hall opposite this one, and its usually never locked."
Cautiously Rhonda gazed up at Helga trying to judge her truthfulness. It was likely that Helga wanted her gone and would say anything to get rid of her, but at the same time Rhonda felt Helga would be more likely to be truthful since Rhonda had caught her in a slightly compromising position with a person she supposedly 'hated'.
Arnold came forward at this point and tried to push past Helga who held out an arm and kept him at bay. Despite his height over Helga, he did not resist her.
"Rhonda, I think Helga is telling the truth, besides the janitor isn't even in here…and we are only in here…because, well we just needed to talk about some things," Arnold said in a rush. Rhonda just stared at him, confused.
"Whatever…I'll give it a shot, but Helga," she paused and gave Helga a threatening look, "if you are lying to me I'll make sure everyone knows that you and Arnold were making out in the janitors closet."
Helga visibly bristled and was about to say something scathing when Arnold cut her off. "We weren't making out Rhonda. And she's not lying. Just go to the janitor to see for yourself," he said hastily. He then turned away from Rhonda and back to Helga who was posturing like a lioness about to take on a gazelle. She had that feral, wild look in her eyes that she always got before she made someone bleed.
Rhonda backed out of the closet to let those two hammer it out but then stopped and faced them again. "If anyone happens to come by and uh, is looking for me tell them where I am." Arnold nodded in Rhonda's direction and continued to struggle with Helga.
After the door was closed Rhonda made her way back down the hall towards the other supposed vacant janitor's closet. As she moved down the hall she could hear angry words and thuds coming from the closet. She couldn't help but smile.
A short while later Rhonda was indeed in the other janitor's closet. Like Helga had said it was unlocked and vacant. She had been here only a few minutes surveying her surroundings when she heard a quiet knock on the door followed by someone entering.
She was at first nervous at this entry, but then calmed remarkably when she saw who it was. Harold stood before her with a sheepish smile on his face. Rhonda moved forward to him and teasingly wrapped her arms around his neck. He looked back at her with a mixture of anxiety and anticipation.
"How'd you find me?" she whispered seductively.
"Well…I uh, it's kind of weird actually," Harold started and was about to continue before Rhonda interrupted him.
"I don't really care, I know how. You saw Arnold and Helga and they told you to come here. End of story," Rhonda cooed and moved in closer to Harold's bulbous nose, protruding tooth, and hauntingly hazel eyes.
Harold looked surprised, totally lost to Rhonda's advances. "Are they together? I mean ARNOLD AND HELGA?"
Rhonda snorted and leaned into his ear and whispered, "Doubtful. And who cares anyway, you came here to see me, big boy." She playfully licked Harold's ear lobe. And that had the desired outcome Rhonda was looking for. Harold wrapped his own arms around Rhonda and grinned at her.
"Okay Rhonda…not much time today, huh?" he leaned into her, greedily eyeing up her mouth. Rhonda batted her eyes in response.
"No, but that doesn't matter does it?" She murmured.
"Nope," he replied.
"Good. Now show me how much you care for me," Rhonda demanded slyly.
Harold smiled back at Rhonda and replied in his most seductive voice (which wasn't that seductive), "Yes ma'am."