Word Count: 3553
Summary: David Desrosiers isn't your typical sixteen year old boy living in Juneau, Alaska. Bullied relentlessly by Pierre Bouvier, a boy he's known since elementary school, David and his best friend Jenny come up with a back-handed plan to seek revenge on the boy who makes their lives a living Hell.
Disclaimer: Don't know, don't own, didn't happen!
Author's Note: So... I don't know if anyone's actually still interested in reading this, but... I'm writing it anyway. Here goes nothing!
“David, what are you doing?”
“Wha?” David blinked and sat back in his chair away from his computer screen, blinking his sore eyes hard and willing the color and light in the world to look right again. He turned to look at Jenny, a dazed look on his features and his mouth slightly open, still blinking every few seconds, and uttered the word again, “...wha?”
Jenny rolled her eyes and threw her spiral notebook at David, who laughed and batted it away in a clumsy manner, causing it to land several feet away on his bedroom floor, the pages fanned out and bent at random. “I've been talking to you for, like, five minutes and you've just been staring at your computer! Have you even been listening?!” Jenny accused David, holding out her arms in exasperation. When David gave her a sheepish smile and shrunk into his shoulders a bit, she scoffed and threw another notebook at him, which he smacked away in the opposite direction, laughing guiltily.
“I'm sorry!” he defended himself with a grin. When she glared and picked up her binder as if to throw it at him, David held both hands up and closed his eyes. “I'm sorry, I'm sorry!”
“Well jeez, David! Way to make me feel important!” Jenny said with a huff, though she reluctantly dropped her binder back to the spot next to her on David's bed.
“I'm sorry!” David said again, before turning in his computer chair and facing his computer screen once more, though he grabbed the screen and turned it on the desk so it was angled toward her instead. “Look! I've been researching hockey, trying to learn the rules and stuff,” he explained, turning in his chair to look at her again.
She stared at him with annoyance for a few seconds before sighing and leaning toward the monitor, muttering, “Not that what I was saying was important or anything, it's cool...” under her breath. David rolled his eyes and shook his head, though he smiled at her still. He watched as Jenny read, her brow getting more furrowed the longer she read. “Okay... whoever invented this game is dumb,” she said after a few minutes of reading and scrolling down the page.
“Right?!” David exclaimed and he moved to sit next to her, looking at the screen incredulously. “This game makes no sense!”
“It really doesn't! I mean... icing? And what the heck does off-sides mean?” Jenny agreed enthusiastically.
David sighed and together they kept reading, though it didn't make any more sense to either of them. After another ten or so minutes of reading and still getting no where, David suggested that maybe they needed to read all about it to get it, including history, and they began to search deeper. Before they knew it, they were three hours in and still hadn't progressed any further, though they had covered pretty much everything they could, including looking at colored diagrams of players, positions, and even the rink set up. Still, they didn't understand.
“I think I'm getting it...” David muttered, though the fact that he said this with his eyes closed while rubbing his temples slightly diminished the reliability of his words.
“Oh really?” Jenny asked, raising an eyebrow in disbelief.
“Yes!” David replied defensively, sitting up and glaring at her in a pouty manner. They had spent the last three hours studying a sport online that neither of them liked or understood; tempers were running a little short.
“Okay, then what is...” Jenny trailed off and looked back at the computer screen, though she turned it so that David couldn't see it and clicked randomly on one of the seven internet page tabs they had open. “What's a flyer?” She asked, and as she did she sat back and crossed her arms, giving a look as if to say 'I told you so.'
“It's, um... it's... umm...” David looked to the side and thought hard, trying to remember positions. He knew it was a position, but other than that he was drawing a blank. He'd read something... but he had read so much, he couldn't tell one article or web page from another.
Jenny gave a soft, “Mhmm,” and turned the screen back, something which irritated David greatly.
“You're not helping!” David complained, pushing the monitor away again with an irate sigh.
“I'm sorry, but this isn't getting us anywhere!” Jenny exclaimed, obviously exasperated.
David shook his head and looked to the side. “This isn't gonna work.”
“Yes it is!” Jenny told him firmly.
“No! It isn't!” David replied quickly, turning to look at her. “I don't have the mental disability to understand this stupid game! My mind doesn't work like this! I'm not a neanderthal like Pierre Bouvier!”
“Come on David, we have to keep trying,” Jenny begged quietly.
“Why is this so important to you?!” David yelled in frustration.
“Because he calls me fat!” Her words silenced David immediately and he looked at her with a somber expression, shrinking away from her a little. When Jenny spoke again, she was much calmer, though instead she sounded heart broken and defeated. “He calls me fat every day.”
“Jenny, you're not— ”
“Yes, David. Yes I am,” she cut him off firmly, and though her tone was sad, it also sounded accepting. “He calls me fat every day and it hurts because he's right,” she continued softly. Jenny sighed sadly and looked down at her lap, though she hated the sight of her own thighs in front of her, so she switched her gaze to the floor, instead. “I just want to get back at him.”
David watched his friend, feeling pain for her even though the insult had nothing to do with him. He loved her and it killed him to see her hurting, especially because he knew there was nothing he could say or do that would make her feel better, and he couldn't deny the fact that she was over weight. Did it make her an unattractive person? No, David thought she was the most beautiful girl in school, but because a magazine said otherwise, one of the best people he had ever met suffered on a daily basis.
Reaching a hand over, David grabbed Jenny's knee, giving her a reassuring smile as she looked back at him. “Don't worry, we'll get him,” David told her, nodding a few times. “Why don't we stop for dinner, and then we can watch some games or something!”
Jenny shrugged and looked away again, clearly feeling insecure as she muttered, “I'm not really hungry.”
David leaned toward her and grabbed her face in both hands, forcing her to look at him. “Jennifer Bailey Adamson, you haven't eaten in eight hours. You're hungry and so am I, and we're going to go to the kitchen, make dinner, eat some delicious food, and then we're going to come right back here and watch hockey so we can destroy Pierre Bouvier's life. Okay?”
It took a few seconds but Jenny smiled reluctantly and got up, replying with a soft, “Okay.”
Over the next hour or so, David and Jenny talked about pretty much anything besides hockey or Pierre Bouvier. By the time they had made their dinner (spaghetti and green beans), eaten it, cleaned their dishes and made their way back to David's bedroom, their minds felt clear and lighter somehow, as if a great deal of their tension had laid in their aching bellies. It was with a feeling of reluctance that David sat back on the edge of his bed and picked his keyboard up off of the desk, setting it on his lap. “Ugghh... I don't wanna,” he complained, though he went to youtube and typed in “hockey” just the same. “I just forgot all this crap!”
“Must destroy Bouvier!” Jenny chanted at him and David nodded and laughed a few times. “Click that one,” she instructed, leaning over his shoulder slightly and pointing at the screen.
David started a video of a hockey game and together the two began to watch, though everything was moving so fast that David couldn't really keep up. He continuously glanced at Jenny, hoping that she might be getting it, but she looked just as lost as he was. The sound of a crash and groans followed immediately by cheers from the crowd brought David's attention back to the screen just in time to see a player falling to the ice while the other skated off around him. Jenny's mouth was hanging open and her eyes were wide as she stared at the screen. “...maybe we should rethink this,” she said quietly.
“What did I miss?!” David demanded and he went back several seconds in the video, watching anxiously as one player came up behind another player and used his entire body to slam the other man into the glass, then skated off without so much as a shaken fist from the referee. The color drained from his face and for a moment he didn't speak as he imagined himself in the fallen player's position, on the ice with blood coming out of his mouth. Could he really do this? As he looked back at Jenny and remembered their conversation from before dinner, however, he knew that he had to try. “Don't get freaked out!” He told her, wrapping an arm around her shoulder in a reassuring manner, though she hardly looked as if she felt better. “This is NHL, I'm sure high school hockey is way less brutal!”
“Yeah... I'm sure you're right,” Jenny agreed slowly, and as if that settled things, she looked back to the screen to watch.
David, on the other hand, felt fear bubbling up inside of him. As he turned back to watch the game, he allowed himself one last thought before focusing again on the game and the rules: I'm gonna die, aren't I?
Over the next couple of days, David and Jenny spent more time than usual online, memorizing the basics of hockey. Though he thought he was starting to understand the rules and the way the game was played well enough, he knew it wouldn't be enough. If it was, then he would have been one outstanding wizard for knowing every word to every Harry Potter book written. Jenny tried to make him feel better about it, the bookworm in her believing that a theoretical knowledge would suffice, but David couldn't help but feel that he was going to be creamed at team try-outs the following week. He needed help, and if he was being honest with himself, he knew where he needed to get it... even if he didn't like it.
That morning as David sat in class, he couldn't keep his eyes off of Pierre. He kept staring at the back of Pierre's head, tapping his pencil nervously on his desk. Over the past week, his plan to ruin the boy's life had been the only thing on David's mind, and now he felt that it would all be in vain come tryouts. He didn't care what Jenny said, theoretical knowledge wouldn't be enough and he knew it. He couldn't help but laugh at the irony in his situation: the only person who could help him destroy his enemy's life was the person whose life he was trying to destroy. It infuriated him and for the moment, he felt stuck.
David had been so focused on how irritating Pierre Bouvier was that he found himself completely caught off guard by the bell signifying that class was over. He jumped and looked around, his cheeks flushing, though no one actually seemed to notice. For once, David was glad to be a wallflower. He began to gather his things, throwing them together in a messier fashion than he normally would have... that was, until he heard something that made him stop in his tracks.
“Pierre, will you stay a moment? I'd like to speak to you.”
David's eyes flicked up and he saw Pierre and their teacher, Mr. Montgomery, looking at each other, the teacher looking stern and Pierre looking perplexed. David turned his attention back to his notebook and papers, though this time he got out his binder and began to put his notes away one page at a time, taking care to over-organize them so he would have an excuse to stay behind and “accidentally overhear” their conversation. He didn't know what he would accomplish by it, but at that point David was willing to take anything that would keep him from losing his teeth.
Once the last student had walked into the hall and the door had swung slowly shut, Pierre approached the teacher's desk, looking at him curiously. “What's up, Mr. M?”
“Pierre, I need to talk to you about your grades,” Mr. Montgomery responded seriously.
David, realizing he was out of papers, made to stand and purposely knocked his entire notebook on the ground. Both Mr. Montgomery and Pierre turned to look accusingly at David, who gave a sheepish smile and a quietly muttered, “Sorry... clumsy...” before dropping to the ground and beginning to pull papers toward him, all the while listening hard.
“Right, like I said... Your grades aren't what I'd like them to be, Pierre,” their teacher started over.
“I know, I just don't have the brain for math,” Pierre explained.
“Well, maybe if you spent more time focusing in class than you did texting your girlfriend, your grades might be better,” Mr. Montgomery chided him, something which David couldn't help but smile at, though he kept his face down and out of sight.
“I swear, I've been trying really hard... But I have school, and hockey and my friends...”
“School comes first, Pierre. School always comes first.”
“I know, but—“
“No buts! I don't want to hear 'but'!” Mr. Montgomery cut Pierre off, and for once, Pierre grew quiet and backed off. David glanced up at the other boy, feeling an odd tingle of pity for him. “Here are the facts: if you don't do better in class, you can't play hockey. School policy.”
Pierre looked as if the floor had fallen out from underneath him, his mouth falling open and his wide eyes desperate, and that tingle of pity got a little bit stronger; for a moment, David found himself forgetting to hate the boy who had tormented him since they were little kids. It took him a few seconds, but Pierre composed himself and gave a small nod, looking down at the ground as he said, “I'll do better.”
“That's what every teacher likes to hear! Then again, you're probably just telling what I want to hear, and not what's going to happen,” Mr. Montgomery said, his voice harsh, which only seemed to humble Pierre further.
“I promise, I'm going to do better,” Pierre repeated, his voice quieter still.
“That's what they all say,” Mr. Montgomery replied without missing a beat, and with that he walked out the door, carrying his briefcase with him and letting the door shut behind him.
Pierre stood in silence for a few moments, staring at the teacher's desk, though judging by the look on his face, David didn't think he was really looking at it. Despite everything that Pierre had ever done to him or his best friend, David found himself walking closer, ignoring his own brain screaming at him as he came to a stop in front of him and reached a hand out to gently touch Pierre's shoulder. “Hey... a-are you okay?” David asked nervously, feeling as if his voice had gotten stuck in his throat.
Pierre turned out of his touch and gave a stiff nod, moving back to grab his own books and shove them roughly in his bag. “Fine,” he responded, though David knew that the other boy was anything but fine. Still, he nodded in return and moved back to his own things, grabbing his messenger bag and slinging it over a shoulder. As he got to the door, however, a thought struck him. David stopped in place and turned slowly, giving Pierre a curious look. “I'll tutor you,” he said, bringing Pierre's attention up to him.
Pierre scoffed and shook his head as he slung his backpack over one shoulder and pulled his phone out of his pocket. “No thanks," he muttered, moving toward the door himself.
“Why not?” David asked, planting his feet and standing in front of the door, refusing to move.
“Move,” Pierre demanded shortly.
“You're gonna lose your precious hockey team if you don't get help and I'm offering it. Why won't you accept it?” David continued, crossing his arms over his chest and arching an eyebrow at the taller boy.
Pierre stared at him for a few seconds, glaring hard, before he matched David's stance and leaned back slightly. “What's in it for you?”
“What do you mean?” David asked, feigning ignorance.
“You hate me,” Pierre replied with an incredulous smile.
“No I don't,” David lied quickly.
“Yes you do.” There was a long moment when the two simply stared at each other before David rolled his eyes and nodded. “So what's in it for you?” Pierre asked again.
“I want help getting on the hockey team,” David told him, throwing all caution to the wind. What other choice did he have? Pierre's response, though predictable, was still infuriating. When Pierre began to laugh whole heartedly David mustered all of the irritation and courage he had and he shoved Pierre's shoulder with one hand, forcing it back and stopping Pierre's laughter simultaneously. Instead the other boy looked nothing short of pissed. “I'm serious. Help me get on the hockey team and I'll help with your grades,” David continued sternly, not allowing his glare to waiver though inside he was shrinking into a ball and praying to suddenly turn invisible.
Pierre gave another soft laugh and looked off to the side, shaking his head slowly, before he sighed and shrugged his shoulders. “Fine,” he said, shaking his head again as if he couldn't believe what he was agreeing to. “But I make no guarantees. You either have the athletic ability or you don't. I can't pull any strings if you suck.”
“Fine,” David replied stiffly.
“Fine,” Pierre mimicked him.
“Come to my house after school and we'll get started,” David told him, not sounding pleased about it in the slightest.
“And how am I supposed to know where you live? Or can I just type “freak show” into google maps and come up with your address?” Pierre asked snidely.
“Oh, hah hah,” David responded, glaring. Then, without asking, he took Pierre's phone from his hand, ignoring Pierre's protest and slapping at the other boy's hand as he tried to take it back. “Relax, I'm just putting my number in here.”
“Oh, hell no!” Pierre replied quickly and he tried to take the phone from David's hand but David slipped out of the way and backed through the desks to the other side of the room; years of being bullied had left him agile as a fox. “Seriously! If anyone sees your number in my phone, I might as well be dead socially!” Pierre continued, following after him, though he was much more clumsy moving between the small student desks than David had been and he only made it half way across the room before David was moving again.
“Fine, I'll make my name something no one will ever think twice about,” David replied smoothly, though he felt a mean sense of pleasure at holding something like this over Pierre's head. Pierre shoved a desk to the side and walked up the aisle, grabbing his phone quickly from David's hand and looking at the screen. David had entered his number as: #pmt. Pierre's eyes moved skeptically from his phone to David for a few seconds before he nodded and grumbled, making his way to the door. David smiled, his back turned. “But no one hears about this, got it?!” Pierre threw in quickly, spinning to point back at David. David turned and threw both hands up, nodding, before making a zipping motion over his lips and smiling at him. Pierre seemed to accept this as a promise of secrecy because he nodded and grumbled something unintelligible before leaving the classroom and letting the door close behind him.
David grinned and got out his phone, quickly sending a text to his best friend.
Find me IMMEDIATELY at lunch!
With a pleased smile, he tucked his phone back in his pocket and made his way to his next class of the day. Sure, he was going to be late, but it had been more than worth it.