AN: Okay, so today while I was at school, this random thought popped into my head that was like, "Hey, I wonder what it would be like if Roger and Mark went to their high school reunion together?" And then, all of a sudden, a song called "High School Never Ends" by a band called Bowling for Soup pops into my head, and I'm like, "WAAAAAAAAAIIIIIIIIIIIT a minute...Oh my god, I think was just hit with a stroke of genius here, people!"

This ended up being the final result of that.



Going back to Scarsdale for our high school reunion was...well, weird, to say the least for both Mark and I. Collins and Mo weren't able to come with us because he'd gotten another teaching gig and Mo was going...somewhere with Joanne, but I hadn't really paid much attention to where they'd gone off to together because I had other things on my mind at the time.

The principal (whose name I never did end up learning before graduation) and our old biology teacher Mr. Cooper were still there, and from what I could tell, they were still in cahoots together just like they had been against me when I was there. Our Spanish teacher, Señora Montoya, and our algebra teacher, Ms. Fritzenburger, aka Madame Hamburger were still around, too.

We never did learn anything in Señora's class. The school is near a small local airport, and so instead of teaching us Spanish, Señora would just stand there at the front of the room and spend the entire period cussing the planes out in Spanish. Then Mark would stand up and yell over the noise that he was there to learn Spanish, so please stop cursing out the planes and just learn us the language already. And then she would tell him caieté, and he would say that he didn't know what that meant, and then she'd go, "SIDDOWN AND SHUT UP, COHEN!" And Mark would sit down and not say anything else for the rest of the period while I flipped through my book and blurted out random words and phrases that looked fun to say and made up my own sentences just for the heck of it.

I don't think Mr. Cooper ever figured out that my first name was Roger. He always just called me Davis. He didn't like me very much, and neither did the principal, who I always just called Sir to his face, which is probably why I never actually learned his real name. I got a lot of detention from those two.

Mme. told jokes and funny stories, and would sometimes randomly explode into German. 'Nuff said.

Seeing all of them again was probably the weirdest part of it all. What had remained of Sir's hair when Mark, Collins, Maureen, and I were in school had finally decided to go AWOL on him, leaving him totally bald, and Mr. Cooper, who had been like twenty-something when we were in his class, now had lots of gray hair and a bald spot on the top of his noggin. It was a very shiny bald spot, too.

Señora seemed shorter than I remembered, and she had started wearing her hair in low loose buns instead of the tight ones she always used to wear on the back of her head, and her gray streaks were a lot more obvious now. The only difference in what I remembered Mme. looking like and what she looked like now were the lines on her face. She had more of them than I remembered, but other than that, she looked pretty much the same, if not maybe a few pounds heavier. She squished me and Mark when she hugged us and made it kinda hard to breathe for a minute.

Two of our old friends, a pair of brothers named Kyle and Jude, had biceps that definitely hadn't been there in high school, and they'd gotten taller than me, and they were mother fucking cops and came up to me and Mark and the first thing either of them said to us was, "Roger Davis and Mark Cohen, you're under arrest for being too uniquely awesome for this place to handle."

While we were catching up with them and I mentioned that I now have AIDS, Mr. Cooper suddenly came over flailing his arms around with his face bright red yelling, "I KNEW IT, I KNEW IT, I KNEW IT! I KNEW ALL ALONG YOU TWO WERE GAY FOR EACH OTHER, I KNEW IT!" And everyone was staring and I was just like, "Dude, I got it through the exchange of blood, not because I'm gay. Besides, gays aren't the only ones who can get it, you know, it's possible for anyone to end up with it, no matter what their sexual orientation is. It could've just as easily been you that got it. Chillax, man, alright, leave us alone, we're in the middle of a conversation."

He walked away with his face on fire grumbling to himself about who-knows-what.

And that pretty much brings me to the part where I found myself up on the small stage of the place where the reunion was being held with my guitar strap across my body, one hand moving back and forth between the frets and the tuning pegs. Once I felt pretty sure that I wasn't about to embarrass myself at the expense of all my old classmates' humor by screwing up a chord or having the whole fucking instrument tuned wrong, I grabbed the mic and let my Inner Rock God of Total Epicness take over, just going with the flow and saying whatever came naturally to me.

The first part of that just happened to end up being, "SHOOP-DA-WOOP, I'MMA FIRIN' MAH LAZAH, PEOPLE!"

And, of course, everybody shut up and turned around to look at me, give me funny looks, question my sanity, and in several cases, probably think something along the lines of, "Oh, look, it's that annoying/weird/dorky kid that I used to pick on all the time and/or threw in the dumpster out back on a couple occasions and/or swirlied a few times and/or otherwise pranked/tortured/emotionally/mentally scarred somehow at one point or another. What's he doing up there?"

Something about that thought made me have to repress snickers.

"Hey, peeps, wazzup?" I said. "Some of you might remember me, some of you might not, some of you might not even recognize me, and some of you probably didn't ever even lay eyes on me a single time in the four years we all spent in the school's hallways. Anyway, for anyone who doesn't know, remember, or recognize me, I'm Roger Davis. Some of you might have known me as that annoying kid in your class who was always carrying on about something totally irrelevant to what happening and wouldn't shut up about guitar and music and bands and rock and all kinds of other random stuff. Or just that weird kid in your class that you always tried to avoid making contact with unless your name happened to be Mark Cohen or Tom Collins or Maureen Johnson or April Ericson.

"ANYWAY, I'm not up here to talk about what you did or didn't call me, I'm up here because someone apparently thought it would be a good idea to let me, my guitar, and my slightly tipsy self up onto this stage so I could play said guitar and sing some stuff for your enjoyment, even though I don't even know some of you and others of you bullied me and gave me swirlies and stuff and earned my lifelong hatred of your guts, but whatever, Mark knows what I'm talkin' about, he digs me, don'tchya, Scarfboy? WOO!

"Okay, so anyway, yeah, some of you might know this song, and if you do, feel free to like sing along or whatever, like I said, I'm a little tipsy, so I really don't give a flying shit what you do or don't do, and just for the record, this is why it's a bad idea to put alcoholic drinks in the same room as me and then expect me to perform on a stage, especially if one of those drinks happens to be called Stoli, 'cause that's like the best one out there, so yeah. Whoever it was that had this bright idea, just be more careful in the future, a'ight?

"Okay, so anyway, I picked this song for tonight because it just seemed really, really, really...reallyreallyreally...really...really...appropr'ite...appropree...apprrr...It seemed really fitting. Okay, so here I go, peeps, pay close attention, 'cause you're about to see a true Rock God at work here, a'ight? Okay, here I go, I'mma start playin' now..."

I didn't even think as my fingers played the first chords with a mind of their own. I just closed my eyes and let my instincts take over. I let the music fill me up and course through my body like it always did, like an electric current that powered the notes. I couldn't keep a smile from breaking out across my face as the first couple lines came out of my mouth.

"Four years, you think for sure,
That's all you've got to endure.
All the total dicks,
All the stuck-up chicks,
So superficial, so immature.
Then when you graduate,
You take a look around and you say, 'HEY, WAIT!
This is the same as where I just came from,
I thought it was over,
Aw, that's just great.'"

Trevor Blackburn punching me in the face and giving me a black eye that didn't heal for about a week. Preppy cheerleaders-the Barbies, Mo had always called them-that made fun of April and Maureen just because they weren't the type of girl who liked to wear skirts and stuff and had never once in the entire course of our high school careers worn a skirt or dress of any kind. One of them literally turning her nose up and laughing at poor Mark when he had somehow managed to stutter and fumble his way through asking her if she would be okay with letting him film her at cheer practice for a project he was doing in his broadcast journalism class.

"The whole damn world is just as obsessed
With who's the best dressed and who's having sex,
Who's got the money, who gets the honeys,
Who's kinda cute, and who's just a mess.
And you still don't have the right look,
And you don't have the right friends.
Nothing changes but the faces, the names, and the trends-
High school never ends."

That got a cheer out of 'em. From the corner of my eye, I noticed Mark crouching near the stage grinning at me past his camera as he filmed my performance. I flashed him a quick grin and winked to let him know I'd seen him down there doin' his thang while I did mine.

"Check out the popular kids.
You'll never guess what Jessica did.
How did Mary Kate lose all that weight?
Katie had a baby, so I guess Tom's straight.
And the only thing that matters
Is climbing up tha social ladder.
Still care about your hair and the car you drive,
Doesn't matter if you're sixteen or thirty-five."

One of my classmates had a baby during our sophomore year. Her name was Erica something-or-other, I think. Or maybe Erin. I didn't really remember her verywell because not long after it got out that she was knocked up, she disappeared from school and nobody ever saw her again. At least not as far as I was ever made aware, anyway.

"Reese Witherspoon,
She's the prom queen.
Bill Gates,
Captain of the chess team.
Jack Black, the clown,
Brad Pitt, the quarterback.
I've seen it all before,

Damn straight I do, bitch! REFUND, REFUND, REFUND!

"The whole damn world is just as obsessed
With who's the best dressed and who's having sex,
Who's in the clubs and who's on the drugs,
Who's throwing up before they digest.
And you still don't have the right look,
And you don't have the right friends,
And you're still listening to the same shit you did back then.
High school never ends."

Well, maybe not all the same shit...Back then it was, "Don't forget to do your homework." These days it's Mark always getting on my ass about remembering to do my AZT every day.

"The whole damn world is just as obsessed
With who's the best dressed and who's having sex,
Who's got the money, who gets the honeys,
Who's kinda cute, and who's just a mess.
And I still don't have the right look,
And I still have the same three friends,
And I'm pretty much the same as I was back then...
High school never ends."

The same three friends plus a few more. And yeah, I guess I am still a giant goofball, but that's just how I've always been and probably always will be. But now I also understand the importance of certain things more than I used to, like love and loyalty. And I don't take that sort of thing for granted as much as I used to, especially when it comes to Mimi and our friends, especially Mark. And hey, I'd definitely improved on my guitar skills since the last time I set foot in this place!

"High school never ends!"

At least I don't have to put up with swirlies and dumpster tosses anymore.

"High school never ends!"

Doesn't mean I still don't get bullied, though. (CoughcoughBennycoughcough)

"Here we go again."

AN: I'm not even out of high school yet, but I'm with Roger on this one. REFUND, BITCH, GIMME BACK MAH MOOLAH! SHOOP-DA-WOOP, WE'REA FIRIN' OUAH LAZAHS! *fires lazah with Rog*