Because We're That Stupid
Chapter One: What the…?
When you're an outcast like me, only have one best friend, and you're so socially awkward that even a turtle can do better, hope you realize it's going to be a long ride through high school. And when you're in a school where it's more like Where the Wild Things Are than civilized, you'd be pretty surprised when you're on the floor of the damn high school, getting trampled over by animals you call your fellow students.
I'm Katniss Everdeen, and to me, high school has never been so stupid.
"Oh my goodness, Madge, that's some real messed up shit!" I yell, laughing as she finishes off her written love letter to Gale Hawthorne, co-captain of the football team.
Madge's in love with that shithole. All she does is write him letters on how much she wants him and do things I find rather disgusting with him. I mean, she's still a virgin. Who gives a shit?
She smirks as she quickly shoves the letter in the dim-wit's locker right when the bell rings and the rude, bloody teenagers pour into the hallways.
"That's enough letters from this secret admirer," she sighs, gripping her handbag harder, making her knuckles white.
"I don't understand why you even try, I mean, its bullshit really. All he does is laugh and share it with the football team. Plus, he's got a girlfriend. And you know how much we hate that bitch," I say.
"Ugh, Glimmer Miss Perfect should shove her asshole personality up someone's ass," she snaps, angrily as she stares ahead.
"Well, guys here don't go for a girl's personality, they go for how much junk in the trunk a chick has," I explain the obvious to her.
"No shit, Sherlock. I mean, why can't someone like Peeta Mellark steal my heart?" She says, shaking her head at her own stupidity.
I blush, furiously. She laughs hard. "Oh c'mon, Madge, stop it. You know I've been crushing on him since that day in kindergarten when I puked all over Glimmer Williams." That's why she hates me so much. I ruined her toddler reputation that day. And she never let it go. Girl has more problems than Lindsey Lohan. Who the hell has a toddler reputation? Only her, Jesus, only her.
"Okay, whatever. Let's just walk to history class before Mr. Regan has a heart attack, shouts at us and smacks our fingers with that damn ruler," she spits it out like poison. Then again, it may be poison.
We rapidly start for history. On the way, we're almost KILLED by these bitchy teenagers. I mean, what the fuck is this shit? How can our society expect us to do well in school while you're more focused on not getting compacted by these bulls you call students than your grades.
When we get to the door, it's closed. Oh shit, I think to myself. "Madge, I think we should just skip the class," I whisper to her, quickly.
"I'm with you, sister," she says, and we get ready to run for it until we hear it.
"Miss Everdeen and Miss Undersee, what are you doing here so late?" Mr. Regan yells from inside as he walk out, opening the door that we hate so much, more than Mary Poppins the Musical.
"Uh…uh…um…I-I," I stutter. Madge elbows me in the stomach to shut me up. I'm so socially awkward a turtle can do better.
"We're late. Detention?" Madge asks, making me feel as if Patty Quebec sat on my chest. She weighs more than the weights in our school gym. Mrs. Regan just nods and lets us in.
Immediately, my eyes go onto that boy that makes me shiver when he walks by me. I glance at him, not being able to take in all his glamour. The blond, shiny blond hair, those sparkly, ocean blue, big eyes, and those fucking muscular arms are way too much or me to handle. Who knew the outcast of Katniss Everdeen would fall for Peeta Mellark, the captain of the most successful high school wrestling team in god damn state.
And when he looks up at the tardy students, I can feel my head spin wild and my breathing become some kind of Star Trek theme song with a heavy bass. I finally sit down at my desk, right behind him. Like why? Why, Jesus, why? All I can stare at is the back of his perfect head. I can almost touch the hair, the hair.
Shit, Katniss. The fudge is wrong with you? You're such a FUDGE NUT!
"Fudge Nut," I say to myself, barely under my breath.
"What?" A voice says. I look up, my eyes widening like a deer caught in headlights. I calm my breathing as he asks, "What did you say?"
"I-I'm so-sorry, wha-what you-you sa-say?" I say, looking into those precious blue eyes. I could just die right now. I think I see a light. I SEE THE LIGHT! Oh my fucking goodness, Katniss. Shut the fuck up. The boy is talking to you.
He laughs, setting me to butterflies in my stomach. I must look like some wheezing creep to him right now. Flashing that charming smile at me, he asks, "Can I borrow a pencil? I forgot mine."
"Uh-uh sure," I say, handing him a pencil with my shaking hands. He smiles and takes the pencil away from my hand softly, and his hand bushes mine softly. I died. Heaven is already here to take me to the light, THE LIGHT! This is why you never got a boyfriend, I think to myself.
"Thanks," he says, winking at me. My heart stops.
I feel a paper hit my face and fall against the cold surface of my desk while Mr. Regan has his back to the class. He talks in that dull voice of his as he writes on the bored. I look in the direction the paper flew in. I see Madge right in front of me next to Peeta. Rolling my eyes at her, she beckons me to read the paper.
Opening it, I can already feel my cheeks get red.
You looked like an idiot talking to him.
I roll my eyes and throw the paper at her. Unfortunately, the paper doesn't hit Madge, it hits Glimmer. She turns around and her cold eyes go on me. As soon as she realizes it's me, her eyes widen like some retarded fish.
"Oh my gawd, Katniss! You are such an idiot!" She yells, getting the attention of the entire class. I can't find my voice because Peeta turns around to look between us like everyone else. "I am going to kill you!"
Mr. Regan turns around in a second. "No you will not be killing anyone, Miss Williams," he says, silencing the entire laughing class.
"Damn right she won't," it slips right out of my mouth. Every single head turns to me. And as if on cue, everyone starts to laugh. What the hell? It's like they're losing their… shits. Seriously, is it that funny? Do they even have a funny bone? Where the hell is your funny bone located?
"Miss Everdeen, I hope to see you in detention, actually on time," Mr. Regan snaps, as if killing the entire class with his deep, manly voice.
Yeah, maybe he's such a manly man. He does manly stuff like take out the garbage and clean the dishes!
I nod, gulping right behind it. This day could only get worse.
After history, I have P.E. That class is like a hellhole filled with sweaty kids, hot air, and a yelling teacher. It's even worse when you're sweating, too. Madge doesn't have P.E with me, but he does, and I hate it. Every time, the kids get a laugh out of me when I trip because I'm too busy paying attention to sweaty, shiny, and hot Peeta. And he's not the only one who has this class; it's all the Neanderthals, too. Gale, Cato Wilderfield (also co-captain of the football team), Glimmer, and Clove (captain of the girls volleyball team).
They're all just a bunch of shit heads.
Getting there, I can already feel myself tense up. Why do I have to attend? Maybe I can just skip the class.
No use, I can hear the students who have this class running through the hallways. When I feel as if I'm getting pushed right through the gymnasium's doors, I can already tell this is going to be a terrible class.
Screaming, laughing, and chatting students tumble through the door, pushing me through the doors and sending straight to the gym's floor like a banana. Couldn't this get any better? Some kids start straight up laughing at me. I lay there, feeling the pain on my back when a hand reaches down and strongly picks me up.
"You okay?" Asks the blond who helped me up. The heat suddenly gets immense. He's actually talking to me. He's so sweet, but the rest of the guys here are jerks.
I look at him, for a slight second until Coach Abernathy starts talking to us. I don't even have the chance to thank him. Like you would have been able to say a simple thank you.
Shut up, I tell myself.
"Alright, alright, kids let's start with some laps around the gym!" The class groans and everyone starts to run except for me. I stand there; ready to tell coach I won't be running because of what happened last time.
Once, when we were running around the gym, Cato and Gale decided to have a race. Well, let's just say those to bullshitted heads ran right over me, leaving me with some kind of scoliosis injury. Like those dumb asses literally dented my fucking spine.
Coach Abernathy eyes me. He shakes his head and walks towards me. "C'mon, Everdeen, you can do this. At least try."
He's always been a bit like my father. He knew my father very well, and now that my father has passed away, he's like one to me.
"At least make some friends," he encourages, the rough teacher voice leaving him and being replaced with a concerned and soft one.
I sigh. "No one wants to be friends with the outcast and creep who lost her father Katniss Everdeen," I explain, he shakes his head as I continue, "and besides, I have Madge."
"Katniss, that's because you don't try to make friends," he persists.
"No, it's because I'm fine with having Madge as my friend. I'm awkward, ugly, stupid, and just plain disgusting. I'm not good at anything and I'm a failure," I say, looking down at the floor, holding back my tears.
Coach smiles, "You're wrong. If you could only see why these kids are so intimidated by you. You're not ugly, you're not stupid, you just don't try, and you're not disgusting. And let me tell you something Katniss Emily Everdeen (made it up :P)," he starts, "you're amazing with a bow and arrow. You're father showed you how to hunt! Why can't you do that? Hunting takes a lot of energy and commitment, sweetheart, and you've got that. Just believe in yourself."
"Hunting brings back too many memories," I'm not denying the fact that I miss hunting because it's the truth. I can't go back into those woods that I've loved, not anymore. Hunting with my father is the happiest memory I have here in Georgia. I can't go back there. I just can't. Remembering my father is too hard for me.
"Well, the Katniss I know won't let memories get to her," Coach Abernathy says, walking off to the class who has stopped jogging and are standing breathlessly in a cluster.
"How come Puke Girl over here doesn't jog but the rest of us have to?" Glimmer asks, rudely.
I roll my eyes, already feeling the humiliation set in my stomach. I slowly make my way to the rest of the class as Coach Abernathy yells, "Miss Williams, maybe you can demonstrate for us how to use a bow and arrow," my eyes widen and my heart stops, "because we have a new sports team for archers."
Glimmer snickers, "What kind of loser does archery?" Some of the class snickers and I can feel myself want to scream at her because she's not just talking about me, she's talking about what my father use to be.
My eyes go on her and for a moment, I might just launch myself at her meddlesome ass. I'll pull her pants down like she did to me in 8th grade. Such a bitch that day. Coach sees the looks I give her and whistles. "Well, an archer might just shoot you right in that little pretty," he pauses as Glimmer blushes, "hollow," everyone laughs, "head of yours in seconds and kill you."
I laugh the hardest and that causes Glimmer to shoot me a look. "Like this bitch over here?" Glimmer stomps her foot and smirks.
"Glimmer, shut that mouth of yours and watch how a pro does it," Coach says.
"What? Puke Girl knows archery? I guess I was right, only LOSERS like archery," she retorts.
I'm so angry that my mouth has mind of its own. "Give me that bow."
Coach Abernathy smiles and hands me a bow from the floor. It's unkempt and just ugly as shit but I'll still use it. Coach stands up a few targets in red, blue, yellow around the circle. I breathe in and out, aiming at the middle of the target. I can feel the eyes of the entire class on me. Glimmer still has that stupid, mocking smile on her face as if she knows I can't do this.
I just can't give up now. I finally see what Coach meant. There's more than just to live like this. I'm tired of being treated like nothing, like a piece of shit…dog droppings. I'm not that. I don't want to be that. I want to be myself…and who I am now, it's not me.
And with that, I let the arrow soar through the air, making it land right in the middle…bull's eye…more like bullshit. I still got it in me. A triumphant grin creeps up my face.
"YEAH! You see, Glimmer, an archer has a much better chance of survival and skill than a hollow headed princess," Coach snaps.
Everyone bursts into laugher while Glimmer walks towards me, pushes me, and grabs the bow from me. She picks up an arrow and shoots it at a target, and it misses, badly. She might have killed a cat or a nearby cow because it flew out the window.
"Nice job, Glimmer," I yell, standing near the cluster of teenagers…smelly and sweaty teenagers…
Her head jolts in one second to shoot me a dirty look. Coach laughs his ass off the entire time, sounding like some screeching truck that doesn't want to start. I shyly glance at Peeta, who looks at me, laughing silently to himself and slightly nodding. The rest of the class laughs at Glimmer, who struggles to get the target.
After a few minutes, she stops and turns around, walking towards me with her fist in the air ready to hit me in the face.
"HEY! Williams, walk away now while you still have some dignity," Coach laughs, making Glimmer even more pissed off. At this point, I'm trying so hard not to laugh right in her face.
P.E is finally over. Coach said to meet him a while after school to discuss the archery team. I seriously thought that fudge nut wasn't serious.
I walk to my locker in the hallways when I feel myself get pushed into a locker, my head hitting the metal fucking HARD. I yelp in pain, standing back up and holding my head. I look at the person who could have done this. Obviously, it had to be Clove. That bitch always bullies me. And it's not better when I have to go home to an abusive parent.
I feel cold metal against my cheek. I glance at the object in horror. It's a knife. She smiles when she hears me slightly scream because of my fear building up.
"Listen to me, Puke Girl," she demands, "back off Glimmer's nerves or it won't go too well for you."
I nod, vigorously. Right now…I'm shitting my pants. Clove smirks and punches me in the stomach, sending me to the floor. The pain is extreme and unbelievably unbearable. She keeps hitting me until I can't even breathe.
I spit out blood. "Please…stop it," I beg as she laughs.
"No, you deserve it, bitch," she shouts at me, kicking me right on my ribcage. Frantically, I look around for anyone's help. No one cares. It feels as if something more than Clove's punches and kicks that hurt.
It's the realization that no one cares about me.
After what feels like hours, she leaves. Lying on the floor, in pain, I silently cry. The end of the day has come, and everyone who has seen me on the floor doesn't bother to help me. The hallways are empty of everyone.
Thinking back to everything that has happened to me, I find nothing but misery. Since my father died, life has been tough. Mother lost it and tried to kill me. I was sent to live with a woman who doesn't even care about me.
But I'm not completely miserable. Though I'm just a girl in high school that chews on her hair when she's bored in classes, can't speak up, and doesn't have the guts to do anything, I'm still going to school every day. I'm still getting up every morning knowing what my day could be like.
"KATNISS!" I hear Madge screaming as her footsteps grow louder as she gets closer. "Katniss, are you okay?"
"Do I look okay," I say, barely under my breath.
She shakes her head. "I'll go get some help."
I nod at her and she takes off again.
I have Madge, my best friend. Who needs more? I'm going to get through high school, and I'm sure I know exactly how. It's what I've been looking for, but I just didn't realize until now.
"Katniss, it's impossible," Madge says, shaking her head.
We're sitting in uncle Cinna's backyard, our hands on the table as we wait for him to come out. Maybe my plan is crazy, but who really cares. After the incident with Clove, I was sent to the nurse but escaped the office before they could call Sandra, my aunt who takes care of me…remember? The one who doesn't give a shit what I do? The selfish bitch? Yeah…that one.
"Madge, you don't have to go on with it," I tell her, making sure she's not doing this because she feels as if she needs to.
"Oh trust me, as insane as this is, I still want to do it. Plus, you're my best friend, remember? I'm always here for you," she smiles.
I smile back and thank God for a friend like Madge. At the moment, Cinna comes outside, holding lemonade in glassy cups. Handing me and Madge one, he says, "Well, girls, I was thinking about your plan…"
"What do you think?" I ask him, sipping on the lemonade.
"Wait, Cinna, just to make sure, this is Katniss' plan, I'm just going on with it because she's my best friend," Madge announces for the 2nd time.
Cinna smiles and claps his hands together. "I bet I can get my friend Portia to come and help me."
"The thing is, I just hate all that makeup, glamour, and…you know…shit like that," I say, looking at my feet through the glassy table.
"But Katniss, we're not here to make you look pretty. Just make you look presentable. You said it yourself, you want to be yourself, and you will," he smiles.
"I agree with him Katniss. I mean, my father is the President of some large company in California and he barely sees me, but when he does, he shakes his head and says that I don't dress like a 'lady'. I sometimes think he's a retarded asshole who only cares about money. But other than that, I think he makes a bit of sense. To be successful, you must act like one, look like one, and be like one," Madge says, her amazing speech getting to me like our drama teacher would burst into tears during the Titanic and Madge would start laughing.
"And it's not about being pretty, but about giving you the appearance you want and who you are, not this girl, Katniss. You're both dressing in baggy pants and dirty t-shirts. I suggest you pick up your acts now. If you two want to be successful and fulfill all your dreams, I advise you both to try your best in academic areas. This isn't a joke. You must show your teachers you are prepared for a day of learning and only that way, will you both be successful. Those who work hard become quite successful, if I might say," Cinna explains.
I think about it. Before my father died, I didn't act like this. I was much better at making friends. I'd dress like a normal person and it wouldn't be like winning World War II to speak. I'm Katniss Everdeen, and I'm not going to let a memory change me and keep me from moving on.
I nod. "Okay," I agree.
"Just remember Katniss, you're not alone," Cinna says.
I smile. "I know."
I walk into the gymnasium again. Coach Johnson is in the middle of a wrestling practice. My eyes immediately find Peeta, who's staring at me with those precious blue eyes…shit. Time for another installment of 'Awkward Katniss Everdeen'. He stands there, just looking at me and when his eyes meet mine, he smiles.
"Everdeen! What ya'll need?" Coach Johnson yells at me, making all the boys in the wrestling team look in my direction. Also, he took my eyes off the amazing sight of Peeta sweaty an hot…fuck.
"I'm looking for Coach Abernathy," I say, surprisingly smooth.
"In his office," he replies, and I nod.
Walking into Coach's office, I bump into someone. "Everdeen, stop being so clumsy."
There he is…that fuck face.
"Ugh, can we just get this over with!" I say, annoyed as fudge.
He laughs. "You like that Mellark boy, right?"
My eyes widen. How the fuck does he know that? "No," I lie.
"You're lying!" He says, laughing and walking around me to the door. He heads for the bow and arrow in the middle of nowhere. What is this? Survival 101? It's not every day you find a bow and arrow in the middle of a school gym.
"No I'm not," I lie, my voice cracking near the end. He shoots me a look. I can't deny it now since my voice cracked like a donkey. I sigh. "Fine, I do like him. And why do you ask anyway? It's weird talking to you about it anyway," I say.
"This is your chance to impress him," he winks at me, handing me the bow. I pick up an arrow off the pile of them on the floor.
"Fine, but I don't get why you decided to start some dumb archery team," I say, aiming.
"I want you to do what you love again, even if you're not ready to go back into the woods," he replies. I sigh and fire the arrow, landing it right in the middle. "See, Everdeen, you got skills. Now, I challenge you to hit all of those in ten seconds."
There are about twelve targets up. I shrug and smirk, "You're on."
The gym is silent as I get ready to fire my arrow. I block out the nervousness I'm feeling because I'm sure everyone is looking right at me…including him. I breathe in and let the arrow fly, and as soon as I see it hit the middle of one target, I move over to the next with an arrow ready to be fired already. It repeats itself like that all the way to the 12th target. I finish and the gym is silent.
"Umm…Sweetheart, that was only eight seconds," he says, smirking.
I look around the gym, all eyes are on me. I glance at Peeta, who smiles lightly. I blush furiously and Haymitch smiles. He walks towards me and asks, "So, do you want to be in an archery team?"
"No," I reply. He looks at me with wide eyes, so dumbfounded it's hilarious. I laugh and say, "I'm joking."
He laughs. "Okay, don't get smart, Everdeen," he starts for his office and yells, "See you tomorrow?"
I nod, "Okay, Coach!"
Overhearing Coach Johnson yell with his big mouth, "Okay, team, practice is over!"
All the boys run for the locker room. I start for the gymnasium doors when someone calls me. "Katniss, wait up!"
I turn around to see him. Calm down, Katniss, you got this, calm down.
"Hey, Katniss," he knows my name, "nice shooting. I didn't know you liked archery."
"No one did," I say. The sweats on his muscular arms make my insides turn, in a good way. I feel myself get wet between my legs.
He nods. "Well…um…do you want to catch movie sometime?" I think I see his cheeks run red a bit.
I almost choke on my words. "Ugh-um…uh…are you serious?"
"If you don't want to I completely understand," he says, still smiling.
"No! Um…yeah sure, I'd love to," I say, forcing myself to smile.
He smiles. "Okay. Friday night? At 8pm?"
In the inside, I'm fangirling like hell! YES, YES, YES! Just say it Katniss, Yes! "Yeah, that'd be cool," I say it so smoothly I think it even surprises him.
"Cool, well then, see you tomorrow," he says, heading for the boys' locker room.
What the hell just happened?