The days mood changes abruptly and positively when Roger fills me in on his maneuvers. Somehow Roger set us up with Debi and Johanna. By set up I mean meet up with after school. Not an unlikely circumstance however, this is the first time Roger received an affirmative. Nice Rodg. It's snowing something fierce, what can we do? We have no licenses, no cars, no sleds, just bikes and a half empty pack of smokes. You cannot just simply slide over ice all over town in your sneakers. I got five periods to sort it. The bell rings. Kids stand up. Kids walk to another classroom. Kids sit, only to stand and repeat. A mess of movement yet no thoughts about what to do later. In the hallway I see Roger talking with Johanna. She is all smiles. Roger is contorting himself this way and that way, making a show for her. Roger doesn't give two craps about what other's have to say about anything, a free spirit you might say. He shows no shame. Roger is one man show and the running show is going off without a hitch. Joanna slides him a note before they part.
I walk on to Algebra. I like that word, algebra. Joanna is in Algebra as well this period. She slowly and quietly enters five minutes after class has started. The teacher doesn't pick up on any of this. Mrs. Pachuta wears specs. maybe they fogged up? Joanna pays me no mind. The bell rings again. I move slowly in gathering my stuff in order to intercept her before she exits. Joanna notices and starts staring me down. She's trying to break me down. She does, 'hey Joanna.' 'Hi Jimmy,' she simply states in a rather dull manor. Joanna is quietly confident Casually she begins assembling her crap. Three or four books, two hair brushes, numerous pieces of gum and writing utensils are gathered in to a neat square shaped pile. Joanna then rests her elbows on it. She smacks her gum and let's out, ' you like Debi?' If I ever heard a loaded question, there it is. 'Well,...ah..yea, a little,' I say. Joanna sticks her pen to her mouth much like a professor searching for an answer in the air. She angles out, 'enough to go out with her?' Again she states this simply and matter of fact like. Yea, where we going?' 'Shut it Jimmy, you know what I mean. 'Yea Joanna I know, yeah a little.' She wraps her arms around her square bundle and bolts. I call out to her and receive no word back.
Joanna moves robustly straight through the crowd seemingly paying no mind to her surroundings. She dodges this kid, that kid. A doorway or two is no hindrance. Joanna drives right up on the unsuspecting destination, Debi. I see Debi startled a bit by Joanna's immediate presence. Debi quickly turns in surprise and emits in to laughter and hugs Joanna hello. Joanna stays firm in her stance all the while. Most of the next few words are on mute. A few 'oh my god's,' and a 'shut up' are heard clearly from twenty or so feet away. It all ends finally with, 'you can't be serious?' Then suddenly they bee line it to who knows where.
Just as they do I hear, 'yo, Jimmy!' 'Whats up Rog??" 'Hey man,...you seen Joanna?' 'Yes actually I have.' I speak a bit slowly to ruffle his feathers. Roger with immediacy, 'so that's it!?' Further to infuriate him I say methodically, 'so,.........,so what again?' 'C'mon Jimmy,' I let him out, 'yea Rog I did, just now in fact.' Roger spills out, 'she looks hot today right?' Gregarious.
Author Notes: Chapter 1