Chapter Description: 2 new pictures added 11/23/23 Images for this story can be found at the following web...... https://sites.google.com/view/comedy-ars-characters/home
I was soon surrounded in Math class by most of the other students. Hero worship is not my style and I wanted to change the narrative. All I wanted to do in middle school was to blend in with the rest of the kids, something that, for a variety of reasons, hasn’t happened in the first three weeks.
“Hey guys,” I told them, “I need to address the whole school. I’ll be back in a few minutes.”
Officer George and the principal met me in the office. He said, “Derrek, your mom asked me to tell you that she went on her way to work. Since the two females were arrested, she didn’t want to bother you, and she’ll talk to you this evening.”
“Thank you,sir,” I replied.
“Derrek,” said Dr. Glass, “did you want to pick up the mic and speak on the P.A.?”
“Yes Ma’am, but I also wanted to ask you to shield me from any media. There are no heroes here. The problems between me and Sally are private. I don’t want to speak to any outsiders.”
“Certainly, Derrek … I will make that one of my priorities. When you’re ready just hit the switch on the side of the mic.”
“Thanks” ….. I tapped the mic with my finger to make sure it was live. Then I had to figure out how to handle my ‘little’ mess.
“Hey guys, this is Derrek Adams, and I’ve got some great news for you this morning. Are you ready for this? Randy did NOT poison me today.” (I waited till the laughter I heard coming from down the hallway dissipated.)
“Okay, now we did have a little scuffle in Miss Premo’s homeroom, but that’s all done and overwith. Sally brought a gun to school and it accidentally went off and put a hole in the ceiling. Several of my football teammates tackled her … because that’s what football players do. We tackle people. And fortunately, no one was hurt … and she and her mom got a ride downtown with the police.”
“So let’s not exaggerate what happened there. Instead, today we should be seeking out our teachers who played in that incredible band conert Friday night. Did you happen to catch the name of their group? … The Indestructable Instructors … What a great name.”
“They played classic rock music like nobody’s business. I mean, what teacher band would have the stones to play a song like Pink Floyd’s Another Brick in the Wall?
And how about the Doors’ Light My Fire … and Ritchie Valens’ La Bamba? I’ll bet no one knew that Senorita Gato could play the electric acoustic guitar like that.”
“And how about Scarry Harry Torrain on drums? He absolutely killed it. Miss Premo and the professor brought in instruments from the future. Mr. Victum shocked all of us with his voice and keyboard talent. Mrs. Bullutis showed us that the tambourine is a real musical instrument. And Coach Parker was an absolute machine on the sax.”
“So make it a point today to tell them what you thought of their music. And maybe even ask them to sing a song. Before last Friday, none of us knew that we had some of the coolest teachers in the universe. Thanks.”
I switched off the mic and handed it back to the principal. She shook her head in amazement.
“You should run for class president of the seventh grade, Derrek. I think you would win hands down.”
“I was just trying to change today’s narrative, Dr. Glass, but thank you for the good words. I need to get back to my Math class.”
For the rest of the school day, I tried to stay as non-heroic as possible. I kept crediting my teammates for their help, but gradually, word spread around the school that I, alone, confronted Sally and knocked the gun out of her hand.
I couldn’t hide when I walked through the hallways. Virtually every student gave me the ‘warm fuzzies’ of admiration, something my ego definitely did not crave. I just tried to keep my head down, walk fast, and say a mumbled ‘thanks’ in passing.
Even in second period Spanish, the eighth graders of all people were showering me with Spanish superlatives which I barely understood.
The boy who, before, called me a ‘Come mierda’ (shit eater) now told me “Diego, tienes testiculos de hierro.” (You have iron testicles.)
The boy who, before, told me ‘Que te folle un pez’ (You should get fucked by a fish) now said, “Diego, eres el gallo mas valiente de la roca.” (You are the bravest cock on the rock.)
One pretty thirteen year old girl who was taller than me had before, told me to ‘Vete al Diablo (go to hell) now handed me a note that said, “Por favor, jodeme los sesos. Numero de telephono 875-555-4949 (Please fuck my brains out … with her phone number … But isn’t that the problem I just had with Sally?)
And my teacher, Senorita Gato (whom three days ago, my mom had threatened to cut off her breasts) was especially nice.
“Diego, eres el estudiante más amable y generoso que he conocido y muy valiente. (You are the most kind and generous student I have ever known and very brave.)
I decided to be bold. “Professora, Por favor, podemos aprender la letra de la cancion La Bamba como nuestra lección de Español de hoy? (Teacher, can we please learn the lyrics to the song La Bamba as our Spanish lesson today?)
The entire class erupted with the title ‘La Bamba! La Bamba’! … and so the lesson for the day was set.
In third period, Mrs. Bullutis just looked at me with kind eyes and said ‘Thank you’.
I didn’t deserve the ‘celebrity’ treatment, but when I walked into the cafeteria for lunch, everyone stood and clapped. I tried not to smile. I just nodded my head. My teammates tried to be cool. When I arrived at the table, they sat and started eating. Goro and Showkat made sure everyone knew what really happened.
Captain X was hard to impress. “Derrek, next time, don’t be so nice to the school stalker. You’re damn lucky you’re not dead. That would have really fucked up our football team.”
I nodded. “I agree, X … I’m glad I finally found someone smart enough to realize that I’m no hero.” Then I spoke louder. “Did everyone at the table hear that? I will keep my ego in check. I’m just one of 14 players … But I still want to thank Goro for helping me out.”
Goro chuckled, “Ha! Hey amigo, I’ve been wanting to sit on Sally since the year began.”
That broke up my lunch-mates with some good laughter. The rest of the period, we talked about football and about our upcoming Friday game-three against Charles Manson Middle School.
In fifth period Health class, Norton Bimbo walked over to my desk and commented, “You’re as tough as your mother.”
I refused to reply to that with any words. I knew damn well how he had treated Sammantha. I just gave him a half a nod of my head.
In sixth period Geography, the teacher growled at me, “You think I didn’t know that students call me ‘Scarry Harry’? … I earned that nickname, Derrek.”
I smiled and answered, “And you still play a mean set of drums, Mr. Torrain.”
In seventh period, I asked the professor if he had a patent on the seven foot tall double-contra-base flute.
“Oh, no, Derrek … I just bought the parts and put it together from a very large kit. But there are fewer than ten people in the nation who can play it with some skill.”
By the end of the day, things had calmed down and most students had gone back to talking about other things besides Sally and me.
Dr. Glass had sent the media on their way using the same phoney baloney story I spouted on the P.A. … “Some girl brought a gun to school that accidentally went off and made a hole in the ceiling. No one was hurt and the girl was taken away by the police. There was no reason to disrupt the normal school day.”
Thankfully, she kept my name out of it and wouldn’t realease the name of the girl. So the news people never put two and two together … that this was the same girl who orchestrated a kidnapping one week earlier.
Football practice went on as normal with the exception of there being a single spectator in the bleachers … my mom. She came to drive me home after practice.
In the Porsche, we both took a few deep breaths.
Sammantha turned to face me and ‘petted’ the hair on the back of my head. “So tell me, sweety. Since your first day of school, you’ve been poisoned, molested twice, kidnapped, raped, and shot at. Other than that, how do you like middle school?”
“I love it, Mom. I really do. I’ve met great friends, great teammates, and I love playing football. Even the teachers are turning out to be cool … Oh, and I want to split something with you.” I took out the envelope and gave her half.
“A chocolate heart? Where did this come from? I doubt it was Sally.”
“No, Major gave it to me from Shilo. He said she likes me.”
“Interesting … So this sentient robot has true feelings?
“I’m sure she does, Mom. She’s a critical thinker … nothing like a robot.”
“Hmm … Maybe we should take a look at that ‘leg’ catalog on the internet.”
HOSHIKO SENDS AN EMAIL TO HER FATHER IN JAPAN
The last few days have been a very unusual experience for me with American culture. On Friday, the teachers at my middle school formed a band and played rock and roll music from old days. They had some very unusual instruments and they played very well and very informally. Everyone was wild for their music. This never happened with Japanese instructors.
School shootings are also a part of American culture and not of Japan. Last week, I told you that my best friend, Darakatoms, was taken in a car by a girl named Sally and her mother, but he escaped. Sally is very mentally ill. Today she brought a gun to school, but Darakatoms stopped her from hurting anyone. He is a very brave boy and I love him, although I realize I am not allowed to say that out loud. And Madeline is still my best friend for a girl.
Love to you and Mama, Hoshiko
HOSHIKO’S FATHER RESPONDS
Guns in school is not culture. If this continues, I will transfer you to a private school. Your mother and I always worry about your safety, but we are glad that you have such good friends with Madeline and the boy, Darakatoms. Do not confuse love with like. You are much too young to express love, especially with an American. Your teachers sound very interesting. Continue to work hard in your studies.
MADELINE DAZILME JOTS NOTES IN HER DIARY
I can not fucking believe what Derrek did today. He knew that the crazy bitch Sally was going to shoot up the school, and him in particular, and he was just going to stand there by our homeroom door and let her come in. Am I the only one asking ‘what’s wrong with this picture? I mean, why wasn’t there a policeman with gun standing in the doorway instead of an unarmed twelve-year-old boy? They put all the cops at the front entrance and Sally snuck right past them in a disguise.
If Derrek’s goal was to be a big macho man and superhero, then he’s just god damn lucky. For him, it must have been exciting, like a gunfight in a western movie. He wanted it. No wonder he didn’t lock the door. Sally didn’t have an AR-15, but she could have easily shot and killed six of us in the room … me, Hoshiko, himself, Miss Premo, and two of his teammates. That would have disbanded the football team.
Maybe I should rethink my feelings about Derrek. I like Derrek. He’s a good kid, but that was the problem today. He acted like a kid. No really, he acted like a fucking idiot. Am I the only one in this lame-ass school who knows the truth … that Derrek Adams is NOT a hero?