The Day Life Took On Meaning, section one

Fiction By Mairead // 6/8/2009

     Margaret stood with eyes round, scanning the ocean of many mixed faces in front of her. As she stepped up to the microphone and tapped it gently her head began to swim due to the room that was buzzing with noise, and her heart was beating furiously. The room was quite unnerving to the singer; buzzing with noise, alive with action, and completely full of people.
     Swallowing the butterflies in her flustered stomach, she took a deep breath and closed her eyes to begin. As soon as her voice escaped from her lips everything fell dead silent. The room was transfixed.
     Kolbe leant back in his chair with arms crossed, his eyes lighted and burning with passion. He was entranced. Remembering suddenly the first time they had met, a slow smile spread onto his face, but then he was very serious.
     It had been a year ago now since that day. His mother had told him to go to the party where Margaret was at, and he really hadn’t wanted to. He remembered giving in, in the end. It was the only thing he could think of at that moment that brought him any gratitude toward his mother when she was pushing him to do something.
     Mom, he thought quickly. She was back at home alone without any support, but he really wasn’t willing to sacrifice anything in order to go spend time with her.
     Since the party, him and Margaret were pretty good friends he thought, but he felt that somehow they were pulling apart. Lately especially. She was finding it easier to point out to him all the things she saw as problems in his life. She wanted him to be ‘good’ and somehow felt that most of the things he was doing in his life were ‘bad’. Didn’t she understand he just wanted to be free to do what he wanted?
     A lot of the time in their friendship he felt confined, and young, like she knew better and he had to listen to her directions. He knew he didn’t have to, but somehow every time he tried to revolt he just couldn’t do it, and always found his way back into the friendship. She was always there when he needed someone, and safe to talk to. Her ideas were kind of funny, and she was kind of religious, and somehow too good, he thought, but something about her made him unable to walk away.
    As he closed his eyes and let his heart calm, he felt the beauty of her song sink slowly into him. That was something that always brought him peace, something that he couldn’t do without. Her music. But then the song ended. It was as if slowly the room thawed from its frozen breathless position before everyone opened their eyes. For a second everything was silent, in awe, not wanting to break the spell she had cast. Then, the thunderous applause began and rose to unheard of heights, seeming to rock the very room off of its foundation.
     Kolbe sighed and rose as she left the stage. Out in the corridor he saw her trying to squeeze through all of the fans that were pressing her for her autograph. He grasped her arm with a smile, and pulled her through the throng, and outside.
     “So,” he said once they were in his car, “Where do we go next, Grammy award winner?”
     She laughed. “I’m not that good.”
     “I’d say you were. You saw the way you stunned everyone in that room, didn’t you? It’s like we were all dreaming!”
     She shook her head. “Please, no flattery.”
     “Alright, I’ll keep it cool,” he answered, turning on the engine. “But seriously Margaret, you were awesome.”
     She wondered. “Thank you.”
     “So, where do we go?”
     “Home,” was the tired reply.
     “What? After that performance? No, no, we need to celebrate somehow.”
     “But I can’t Kolbe…” she began.
     “What, you can’t have a curfew or something, can you?” he asked skeptically.
     Shaking her head with emphasize she half smiled. “No, it’s not that. I’m getting up early tomorrow and need my rest after today.”
     He didn’t say anything for a little while and turned onto the main street that ran pretty much straight through the town. Anyone who was anyone knew where it ended and began. He frowned. Somehow she had always managed to find an excuse when he asked her out. It was time for him to dig, he thought. “So, where are you goin this time?” he asked.
     “I signed up for a volunteer position at a CYO special needs camp in Akron a few weeks ago and I’ve been going on Wednesdays.”
     “Wait…a what?” He turned to look at her.
     “A camp…for children with special needs.”
     “But why Margaret?”
     She knit her brow. “Well, because I love children and I want to serve them somehow, especially seeing as these children are handicapped.”
     “How much do they pay you there?” he asked.
     Margaret sighed inside. He was always concerned about money. “Nothing. I’m a volunteer.”
     A pause. “Do what you want I guess,” he muttered. “But I don’t really understand all this…”
     “Well…I don’t think it’s easy to understand until you experience it.”
     “Huh.” He was seriously disinterested.
     She knew it. Oh well. “So, that’s why I’ve decided to ask you to come with me.”
     He turned to her in disbelief. “Oh no. I knew you would try something like this. You’re always trying to get me to do these ‘good’ things. Well you can forget about it Margaret.”
     “I am completely serious Kolbe. I really think you should.” She hoped he would think it over.
     He shook his head.
     Good sign. He always shook his head when he was thinking about something. “Come on…” she probed.
     “Nope, sorry Margaret. I’m not giving in, even with your pleading--”
     “You know,” she cut in, glancing at him slantingly, a new tactic up her sleeve, “If you come with me you get a day off of school, and you get extra points too.” She knew he always needed help with points, the slacker.
     He shook his head again, but she saw the look in his eye. Something had hit home. “That’s not going to change my mind. I’m not coming.”
     “Suit yourself.” She thought she had him won over already.
     “So,” he started again, “What are you doing after this camp thing tomorrow?”
     “Oh, didn’t I mention that it takes up the whole day?” she asked.
     He glowered. “No, you didn’t mention that.”
     They were in her driveway then.
     “Well, hopefully I’ll see you tomorrow Kolbe.” She got out of the car and shut the door behind her.
     “Sure,” he laughed.
     Even in his sarcasm Margaret knew that he hadn’t ruled out the option of going with her.
     “Wait!” he called as she walked to her front door. “When will I see you next? How about Thursday?”
     She rolled her eyes with a shake of her head. “I’ll let you know after tomorrow. Do some thinking on what I’ve said.”

     The next morning Margaret woke up at 6:45 to the beeping of the alarm that she had set the night before. Picking up her cell phone, she expected to see a message from Kolbe. Rubbing her eyes she stared at the screen. Nothing. Margaret couldn’t help but feel a little disappointed. Then again, she thought, it was like him not to tell her what he had decided.
     With a sigh she jumped out of her bed and dressed quickly. Then grabbing a brush she watched in the mirror as it hungrily tore through the tangles when she flew it over her chin length brown hair. After she had snatched her lunch pack from the kitchen island, and her calico patterned purse she darted out the door. Jumping into her car she headed towards Akron.
      Driving on the free way she turned her music so loud to keep her awake, that she almost thought her car was vibrating. Tapping fingers on the steering wheel, and bobbing head, she moved in rhythm with all the other cars that were unconsciously driving to the beat.
     Pulling into the parking lot of the school she grinned as she saw Kolbe’s car by the entrance. Changing the gear to park she shut the engine off, grabbed her purse, and hurried towards the building. Somehow she never made it on time. Stopping at Kolbe’s car she tapped on the window and laughed as she saw him fast asleep, his head on his steering wheel.
     He started at the tapping sound and raised a heavy head to see what had happened. Squinting, because of the suns rays that streamed through the window and teased his sleepy eyes as he looked up, he saw her laughing face. He rubbed his eyes slowly and then rolled down his window.
     “Hey,” she began, having a hard time not bursting with laughter at his expression. He looked absolutely rundown. “You can’t possibly be tired, can you? Come on, we get up earlier than this for school…”
     “Yeah, but I didn’t sleep at all last night,” he replied groggily.
     “Sorry…” she said slowly. “We’d better be getting in.”
     With yawn he nodded and got out of his car, following her into the building.
     “So, what made you come?” she asked, glancing back at him.
     He was silent.
     “Tell me later,” she murmured, opening the entrance door. She looked up as she heard the slap of someone’s feet on the floor. She recognized the figure as Jared.
     “Hey Margaret,” he called from down the hallway. “How’s your morning been?”
     “Pretty good thanks. Hey this is Kolbe Partton…”
     “Oh, right, the one you’ve been telling me about,” he remarked with a funny smile, as he looked Kolbe over.
     “Yeah,” Kolbe muttered, “I’m not sure what she’s told you.”
     Jared patted him on the back and gave another funny smile, this time at Margaret. “Don’t worry, nothing personal.”
      Kolbe glanced at him dubiously.
     “Have you ever done anything like this before?”
     Kolbe shrugged. “Not really.”
     “You’ll get used to it in a hurry.”
     As they walked they reached a small closet-like room. Jared said he had to find something in the boxes and disappeared through the door. Kolbe grasped Margaret’s arm and pulled her aside.
    “What did he mean, ‘you’ll get used to it in a hurry’?”
     She itched her head a moment before answering. “Well I don’t really know how to explain it…but it’s just different from what you might think.”
     He supposed he had to be satisfied with that answer, but for some reason wished he was at the high school with the rest of his schoolmates. He shook his head. If they knew he where he was right now…Toby would kill him.
     Jared joined them then and they began to walk again. “Kolbe, how long were you waiting outside in your car?” he asked suddenly. “I saw you there when I first arrived…”
     Kolbe felt that Jared was laughing at him on the inside and didn’t like how he took on an authoritative air. Maybe he was looking into it too much because he was crabby due to lack of sleep, Kolbe thought, or maybe it was just this young mans confidence in his upper hand. Jared seemed used to always being in charge. Kolbe didn’t want to let him pass with treating him like a kid.
     “I wasn’t there long,” he said coolly.
     Suddenly Jared turned into a stuffy feeling classroom where they were going to hold a short meeting for the ‘newcomers’, he said. Of course that meant Kolbe, to which he was quite displeased.
     Jared introduced everyone. They were sitting around a small table eating strawberry strudel and drinking their cups of steaming coffee. “There’s Anna, Kristen, Molly, Char, Sarah, James, and my brother Ed.”
     Kolbe only gave a slight nod of his head as Margaret told everyone his name.
     “All right…” Jared began, grabbing a marker and sprawling the word Wednesday across the top of the board, “So the day’s gonna look like this…first, we’ll take the kids outside, for their outdoor games…second…we’ll do art in the 5th grade classroom this time because of some ceiling damage in the 2nd grade class room, which should make Kristen and her dust allergies happy…third--”
     Kolbe just toned him out and opened up his cell phone to check the time. 7:30. A whole half an hour more just until the kids got there? He sighed. Wow.
     Jared was still talking but Kolbe didn’t hear him and didn’t care. Instead of trying to be intent to the instructions he began looking over the faces in the room, and couldn’t believe that everyone was watching ‘the boss’ attentively and taking in all that he was saying. Wasn’t anyone else tired and uninterested? He glanced out the window and fell to the world of random thoughts.
     Looking back down at his cell phone he felt someone kick his foot, and found Margaret’s eyes fastened on him with disapproval as he looked up.
     “…And silence and put away all cell phones…” Jared finished. He looked at Kolbe purposefully. “All cell phones.”
     Kolbe returned the stare, but slipped the phone back into the back pocket of his jeans. It was going to be a long day…

Comments

Kolbe...

I like that name. how did you think of it??? good story!
:) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :)
"The music is all around you. All you have to do...is listen." August Rush, one of the BEST movies EVER!!!

Tori | Wed, 06/10/2009

“Oh Ronnie! I can’t believe you’re a prefect! That’s everyone in the family!” said Mrs. Weasley.
“What are Fred and I, next-door neighbors?”
–George Weasley

well...

You can find it in name books...but Maximilian Kolbe is one of the my favorite saints, and so I've always loved the name.
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"Sweet is the love that never knew a wound, but deeper that which died and rose again." - Mother Mary Francis

Mairead | Wed, 06/10/2009

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"Sweet is the love that never knew a wound, but deeper that which died and rose again." - Mother Mary Francis

I like this...

I like this story so far. :)

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“The venerable dead are waiting in my library to entertain me and relieve me from the nonsense of surviving mortals.”
- Samuel Davies

Kyleigh | Sat, 06/13/2009

I like Kolbe, and not just

I like Kolbe, and not just the name either. It's a good story; you should post more!

"It is man's inherent nature to scare himself silly for no good reason." - Calvin and Hobbes

Bridget | Sat, 06/13/2009

"I always wonder why birds stay in the same place when they can fly anywhere on the earth. Then I ask myself the same question." - Harun Yahya

I like it. :) It reminds me

I like it. :) It reminds me of the movie "A Walk To Remember".
*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
If I disappear, and you cannot find me, please don't worry.
Just be sure to check all the wardrobes.

Clare Marie | Sat, 06/13/2009

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
"I don't know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve." -Bilbo Baggins [The Lord of the Rings]

Very good!

I like this story! I am anxious to see how the story progresses-- keep writing! :) Good job.

~ Teal :)

Teal | Sun, 06/14/2009

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