Orange and Blue

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Chapter Four: The Mosaic Pieces

Finally, it was Friday after school and the day of the
football game was here. Everyone was pumped up for
the first game of the year despite the expectations for the
team’s success being quite low. A very low ceiling in
fact. Nonetheless, school spirit was abundant within the
majority of the students’ spirits.

Just not Craig who still had a great disdain for the school in general. These thoughts crossed his mind as he
headed towards the club room. All mixed in with the
thoughts of the party. The imagery of hanging out with
Rachel and Isabelle was beginning to develop an issue
within Craig. The larger part of him wanted to make it
happen. But, how was he going to be able to handle
this?

Walking into the club room Craig looked directly at the
center and saw Leanna, waiting, just like the very first
time that he had entered the club room. She was sitting
there, smiling innocently. The kind of smile that would
wear out Craig’s cynical mood and turn him a
sentimental like being.

“Well fuck, here he comes.” Leanna said, greeting Craig
in a cutesy sort of way. What’s going on?”

“Not much, just glad that this first week’s over.”

“Tell me about it. All these teachers give out SOOO
much homework the first week. Why Craig, why?”

“Because they hate us as a way to cope with having to be
in this situation to begin with? They want to see us
squirm? Observe and find who is going to be worth their
Time and effort and who they are going to discard to
wayside?”

“Yes! That’s it! That has to be it!”
“You’re always the first person here, aren’t you?”

“Yup. What? Am I weird for that?”

“When I consider that, yes. Yes, you are weird for that.”

“Well that sucks. But, to answer your question, I have
nothing better going on at that time of the day, so why
not be the first one here? I can get myself settled in and
relax. It’s a sweet deal.”

“Does sound appealing. I tried being first on day one,
but you just had me beat.”

“You were too slow. That’s the difference between you
and me. I set my clocks early so I’m never late.”

“Wait, how do you leave class though? Do you just
walk out? Or do you announce that you’re leaving.”

A sweet-sounding laughter was burst into the air as
Leanna began to laugh. Craig was really beginning to
adore her laugh. It was so loving and full of life. There
was also no way that she could be on the list of suspects.
She was just way too much of a ball of joy and fun.
Craig could rest assured knowing that at the very least.

 

Greatly shifting the energies that laid inside the room.
Amy entered the club room with Ryan and Claire in tow.
Ryan shot Craig a look of acknowledgement, which
Craig quickly scoffed off. As Amy approached the
center of the front of the room, Craig and the others
could sense a change in her vibe. Something was up and
it appeared like she was about to be spilling some of
what was whirling up with her..

“What’s going on Ames?” Leanna asked.

“Just shut up and take notice.” Amy said as she got
herself together.

“Shit, it’s truly great to see how good you’re feeling
Amy.” Craig said, very sarcastically.

“Let me ask you something Craig. How seriously are
you taking your mission that your future self has
aligned you with?”

“What the hell is that supposed to mean?”

“I’m just asking. How much work are you putting into
it?”

“I think about it all the time.”

“Every second of everyday?”

“I’m going to have to say no on that one.”

“Then clearly you are not thinking about it enough.”

“Where is this all coming from Amy? What the fuck
happened to you?

Amy took a deep breath, a sign that did not please
Craig at all. That was the kind of deep breath that one
takes when they are about to let something off of their
that is actually a big deal. At least a big deal to them.
And that would make it some sort of concern to
everyone in the group as well.

“I’ve been communicating with my future self a little
more again.” Amy announced. A nice lump developed
in Craig’s throat as Amy uttered that sentence. Was
there just going to be another ordeal that needed to be
attended to? Was this just her way of asking for help?

“What’s going on Amy?” Leanna asked, feeling a deep
sense of concern for Amy.

“She just texted me out of nowhere last night. She began
talking about something that just made no sense to me. I
asked her what was up and she decided to go all cryptic
on me. Talking about how I needed to look beyond the
masquerade.”

“What do you think she was talking about?” Claire
asked.

“Sounds strange.” Ryan asked, causing Craig to shoot
him a look. Craig was well aware of what Ryan’s true
identity and self were now, so this version of him that
was being presented just did not ring very true to him.
Not in the slightest. It felt a rich guy trying to act poor.

“It was strange. I dug in a little bit and here’s what I
think she is saying. “There’s someone among us who
really isn’t who they are truly presenting themselves to
be.”

The classroom suddenly became silent. Craig
understood why Ryan would be acting that way.
Although, he was taken aback by Leanna and Claire’s
behavior. He just did not expect that they would have
anything to hide. Then, he stopped and examined
himself for a second. What did he have to hide?

“Wait, are you trying to call someone fake?” Leanna
asked, trying her best to cover up his anxiety over what
Amy said.

“That may be a touch too strong of an accusation to
make currently. Though, this person isn’t being
completely honest. They are afraid to show who they
truly are. At least, afraid to show an aspect of
themselves that they deem needs to be hidden away.
And I would say that there is a somewhat complex
reason for this.”

“Like what?”

“It’s hard to say. I mean, maybe, just maybe there is
something that needs to be done. So, the individual
needs to stay covert to be able to get it done. Or perhaps
they are some sort of asshole and need to keep that under
wraps. It’s really hard to say with these types of
people.”

Craig observed Ryan’s body language while all of this
was being said. At first glance Ryan did not seem to be
too affected by this. Then Craig caught a peek of his
legs and feet which conveyed a different story. Ryan’s
legs were moving around, and he was tapping his feet
like he was prepping for an Irish tap dancing
competition.

“What is the course of action that you want to take
then?” Craig asked, enjoying being able to put just a
little bit of pressure on Ryan.

“There are a few ways to go about this.” Amy started as
she took out pad and pen from her bag. “There’s the
nice, simple and easy way where this person can choose
to reveal themselves. And there is the hard way where
we do a process of elimination and eliminate the person
in question.”

Everyone stared silently at Amy once she stated this.
Yes. Amy was frequently in some kind of mood and this
was surprising to no one. However, this current state
was different. The claws were out. She was out for
blood. And wasn’t going to back down until she got it
whatever it was that she was craving for.

“Sound aggressive.” Ryan said as Craig made sure to
hold back his delight over Ryan’s nervous state.

“Why do you say that Ryan? Should we start with you?”

“No, I’m not…”

“STOP IT!” Claire shouted, bringing everyone inside
the room to a dead halt. “Why are you acting like this
Amy? I mean, what do you think that one of us could be
hiding?”

“Therein lies the problem. I don’t know. Maybe it’s nothing. Maybe it’s huge. Perhaps it earth shattering. I have no way of knowing. And when I don’t know something, I like to be educated. And if I can’t be educated then well, I get upset ya feel?”

“Yeah, but this is a bit much isn’t it?”

“Why do you say that Claire? Don’t tell me, you’re one
of them aren’t you?”

“AMY STOP!” Leanna shouted, once again bringing
everyone inside the room to a dead halt. Possibly even
more so due to Leanna rarely gets animated like that.
The vibration was able to even shake Amy.

“Why should I?”

“Because this is not the fucking Salem witch trials. It’s
just a damn club!”

“With that attitude it certainly is.”

“You mean a realist one?”

Everyone felt that shot fired. Amy felt a very slight,
yet poignant shot to the heart from Leanna’s words.
Craig could see Amy’s face going from one of a fighter
or offensive lineman to one of a cat has had just
witnesses an event that caused her to jump from her
seats. It was something else.

“What are you trying to say Leanna?”

“You always get carried away with this shit! Yes, it’s
cool that we can talk to our future self. That’s different.
But, there’s no evil conspiracy! No one in this room is
evil! When are you going to get that?”

Amy looked down at the ground with shame running through her veins. Up until this point, Leanna has just been a nice, supportive figure in Amy’s life in just about every way. Even when she disagreed with Amy, Leanna did it in a playful never.

The thing was though that this day rang a different
tune. Like Leanna just had a dynamite ignited in her.
She was just done with what Amy has been doing. Like
she was going to stand her ground to Amy no matter.
Like she had been concealing and bottling all of this
inside for a minute. And now, it was time for all of that
pent of tension to be freed.

The silence in the room just grew more and more
awkward. Craig took stock of everyone’s body
language. Outside of Amy, Leanna struck a strong pose,
showing that she was in no shape or form backing
down. Not now, not ever.

Claire was fidgeting around in a very anxious manner.
For the most part, Clare came across as the type of girl
who was not only conflict adverse, but really didn’t put
herself in the middle of awkward moments like the one
that was playing out right in front of them. She looked
like a fish not only out of water, but that she’d rather
enter a shark’s mouth than stay on the surface.

Ryan on the other had had appeared to calm down.
Instead of being nervous with the outcome, it appeared
that he had made his peace with it. More than likely it
was because the heat was now off of him. For now.

Craig knew that he had to break the silence somehow.
He couldn’t just allow this to continue and destroy the
group. He had at last found what seemed to be a stable
home base and it was falling apart right in front of his
own eyes. It just did not seem right.

“Look.” Craig started, hoping to draw everyone from
their current frames. “Why don’t we just all just relax a
bit and talk about the next thing that we want to do?
Amy, I know that you’ve been discussing being able
to…”

“Craig, don’t fucking insult my intelligence.” Amy said,
getting back into her normal aggressive stance, more
invigorated. This was an improvement at least. Even if
it spooked Craig a bit.

“What?”

“You heard me. I don’t even really know you. None of
us really even know you. You seem like a smart guy. A
nice guy. And even kinda cute.”

Craig couldn’t help but crack a smile at what Amy said.
Amy caught this and was dismayed with him for making
light of what she was trying to say.

“Please, don’t let that go to your head. It isn’t like I said
that you were hot or anything. Just cute. Kinda at that.
Moving on, none of us really have seen all of you. So,
none of us really know your true intentions, your true
desires.”

“You never asked.”

“Didn’t look like there was any kind of invitations. I
don’t rush through closed doors.”

“Try knocking.”

Craig and Amy were staring at the each other the same
way that Ali stared at Frazier. There was a level of
intensity had not been felt between the two before.
Everything felt cranked up a great deal of notches.
Claire was just about jumping at this point.

“Craig, I want to ask you a question. Who are you?
Just who the fuck are you?”

Craig stood there, taking in the active assault on
himself. Amy’s question just felt tarnishing and
dismissive. Who are you? What kind of question was
that? How the hell was he supposed to be able to answer
that? What were her intentions with that? From Craig’s
vantage point, she was just being a straight up bitch.

“I’ve got to get ready for the game.” Craig replied.
“Take it easy guys.”

“Leaving when shit gets real huh?”

“Would you shut the fuck up!”

Now, not only did everyone stop to a dead halt, but
everyone stared at Craig. Nobody saw that coming and
knew where that kind f energy had risen from. Craig had
just not presented himself to be that kind of guy,
especially towards Amy since it did appear as though he
had enjoyed her jabs. At least on some level. It looked
like other levels weren’t in agreement with her actions..

“What?”

“Just shut the fuck up! You think that you have power
over everyone. The sad fucking truth is that you don’t
even have any power over your damn self!”

Craig stormed out of the room, slamming the door,
hard. The room was rushed with a new kind of cold-
blooded silence. Everyone stood still and did not know
what to do. Amy decided to pack up that pen and paper
and leave. Leanna tried to stop her, but Amy just swiped
away her hand and was on her way. Ever exit looked
like a lonely leaf from off a tree during autumn.

Pacing the halls with a great sense of kinetic energy,
furious at what just took place. He could not believe the
way that Amy was acting. He kept on wondering she
what he had gotten himself into. Ever since he met her,
his life had turned into a crazy series of events that he
had no real control over outside of taking action on what
was burdened to him. He began to wonder if he should
have had just considered the youth club.

Close to the exit, Ryan, once again just popped out of
nowhere. Now that this was the third time, it didn’t
quite have the same effect on Craig as his earlier efforts.
Ryan was visibly upset by everything that had happened.

“Sorry, not surprised anymore.” Craig said.

“Just as well. So… What did you think about all of that?”

“I don’t know. It just seemed random to me. Why do
you think that her future-self told her all of that?”

“My honest opinion? Amy is, how should I put this
delicately? She is a bit shaky in terms of her mentality if
you will. And women are different than men when it
comes to mental shakiness. If a man doesn’t get it
together, unless he is rich, he is going to be screwed
when it comes to the game of life. But, with a woman,
an attractive one no less, there is just more room for
error. Especially concerning the young ones.”

“So, her future-self is a basket case.”

“It does seem as though that’s the picture that has been
painted.”

“Sheesh man. I didn’t ask for this. I didn’t ask for any
of this.”

“Do you truly believe that?”

“Huh? What are you trying to say?”

“We all have wants and desires. That’s obvious to
anyone. What’s not is that we have what we think our
desires are and what our true desires are. And our true
desires are always connected to our core beliefs. Look at
Amy. She may say that she wants the truth. But what
does she really want? She wants to feel safe. You see,
all of our true desires will find a find to break free of the
subconscious mind and met us on the surface. It’s as
simple as that.”

Craig took a pause after Ryan’s little speech. What had
happened to Amy that she needed to feel safe about?
Was it about how she had to save Debra before? Was it
just so that she could have control? Or was she
legitimately scared of getting hurt? Suddenly, all kinds
of scenarios were running through Craig’s mind about
the current situation. His mind began to be filled with all
sorts of ideas about Amy. And then the question of who
was she popped into his head.

“You alright Craig?”

“Yeah man. This is just not what I’m used to.”

“But of course. You are but a mere young man. But, a
boy, in all reality. Your childhood was just yesterday. It
is to be expected that the situation could weigh you
down in some respects.”

“How old are you Ryan?”

“Ha, that doesn’t apply to me.”

“Huh? What do you mean by that?”

“I’m ageless. I can morph myself into whatever I need
to be for my mission. If I had to go undercover in a
kindergarten, I’d morph myself into a five year old.
That’s all there is to it.”

“All that there is to it huh?”

“You seem skeptical.”

“Yeah, but it doesn’t matter.”

“Yet, it does. If something needs to be said. Go ahead
and say it. You needn’t not worry about how I or
anyone else reacts to it.”

“I’m just wondering if we’re the only people on earth
who talk to our future selves. That can’t be the case
right? There must be smart kids than us doing it.

“A lot of people contact their future selves, seeking the
guidance that they offer. What makes you and the group
special is that you were able to talk to them. Hell, you
are able to have a continuous dialogue with them.”

“And that makes me special?”

“The universe seems to think so.”

“Ugh, this is such a fucking headache. Class is already
enough. Now I have to deal with all this.”

“Look at the bright side.”

“And just what is the bright side of all time.”

“I wanted you to be able to figure that on your own.”

“Shit, you are useless. I got to go and get ready for the
game.”

“Ah yes, your investigation of that Rachel girl.”

“Rachel girl?”

“Her last name eludes me.”

“Kemp. “Rachel Kemp.”

“Oh, okay cool. Got it for as long as I remain in this
body.”

“Sounds good.”

“Before you dip, just remember…”

“Yeah, yeah man. Have fun, I know.”

“No, actually. Pay attention. Really try to see into
Rachel. It’s going to be a party so it’s going to be
easy to get caught up in everything around you.
Exercise some futility and be as clear minded as
possible.”

“Are you saying no drinking?”

“Yup.”

“Fuck. Just as well. I’ve got a second girl that I have to
investigate too. I guess it’s all for the best.”

“What? A second girl? Since when? Who is it?”

“Since last night. And her name is Isabelle Sanchez.”

“Hmm. I don’t think I’ve seen her around.”

“She’s that hot weird looking girl that nobody talks to.”

“Oh, right!” I’m guessing that the date with Marcy did
not go well.”

“We can safely say that she is no longer a suspect.”

“Gotcha. Well, with two that goes doubly. Are you sure
that you are going to be able to balance them out? You
might want to check the market for a wing man.”

“Nah, I’m good. But thanks for the offer. Even if it
came out of nowhere.”

“I’m always here to help bro.”

Later in the evening Craig was walking back to school
as the football game neared. At the bottom in the pit of
his stomach were feelings of excitement and anxiety that
were constantly overlapping each other like an infinite
loop. His main goal as he strolled through was to just
stay out of his and focus on what was right in front of
him. As he began to do a good job with this, a great
pattern interrupting text from his future-self came in.

“You need to convince Rachel to not cheer tonight.”

Craig was starting to run out of facial expressions for
the things that his future self would ask him to do. All of
these things were always demanding in their own unique
ways. Though, this to be sure took the cake as far as the
level of difficulty. Nothing presented itself to be more
impossible stop Rachel from cheering the night of the
season opener. Nothing.

“I can’t do that! And fucking respond!”

Craig kept his cellphone in front of his face the whole
time. Just that it was to no avail, his future self was done
texting himself for that session. Right at that moment,
Craig just wanted to punch something extremely hard. A
case of why me fell over him. He saw no way that he
was going to pull this off. No way in hell.

All kinds of thoughts were now flooding through
Craig’s cranium. First it was all about how this wasn’t
fair. How it really sucked that all of this was happening
to him. Then it turned into how Rachel was going to
hate him now. That there was no way that she would
forgive him for what he had to do. It took him having to
trip when he finally was able to become present again.

Craig finally understood what Ryan was telling him. It
wasn’t just about staying sober the whole night long. It
was about not letting these negative thoughts clutter his
mind. Keeping a clear and conscious mind was going to
be vital tonight. If he couldn’t stay in control of his
thoughts and emotions, he was going to fail. That was
the one thing that he was sure of.

While approaching the school, Craig was able to come
up with a game plan to get Rachel to not go up. He had
to do something to himself that would get her riled up so
much that she simply couldn’t go up. It also had to be
something that she couldn’t
possibly hate him for. But short of dying there wasn’t
much that he could do.

Then, he saw Joe and Mark walking on the other side.
A nice big ole smile came across Craig’s face one an
idea was connected to their presence. Now, everything
was falling in line. He now knew just what he needed to
do. And it would be easy to get Rachel’s attention from
it.

He was going to start a fight with Joe and Mark. It was
as simple as that.

Craig walked up to the gate where Joe and Mark were.
It wasn’t hard for him to muster up enough anger for him
to get into a fight with them. Just looking at them filled
him with an insufferable rage. Thinking about what they
did to him last year and the fallout from it just added fuel
to those rage flames as well.

Craig decided that he was just going to be playing a
character. He was going to essentially bully them. But,
it would be done with style. His style of course. This
would ensure a response. And the key would be to time
so Rachel could spot just before she would go out.

As everyone filed into the stadium, Craig looked
around and saw where the cheerleaders were. There was
Rachel, drinking a bottle of Gatorade and stretching as
the other ladies were applying their makeup. All of this
just made Craig fall for her more. While all the other
girls were concerned about how they would look, Rachel
just wanted to be ready to perform. It was a shame that
he couldn’t let it happen.

Craig bought some chips and a soda and sat down,
waiting for Joe and Mark to enter. When he got half
way through his soda, he saw Joe and Mark walk up the
stadium stairs. A glint suddenly became plain in Craig’s
eyes.

It was showtime.

Craig had some clay from his art class that he hadn’t
disposed of during class. Before the plan came to him he
felt lame for having it. But now it was the perfect fight
instigating tool. There was just no way that it wasn’t
going to pan out.

Craig balled up the clay and chucked it at Joe’s head. It
bounced off someone’s pizza and went right in Joe’s
face, now covered in pizza sauce. Craig smiled
devilishly as Joe and Mark turned made eye contact with
him. Their eyes were filled with pure contempt. Just
like what Craig wanted.

“Slut, just what the hell do you think that you’re
doing?” Joe asked, wiping the pizza sauce off of his
face.

“I was bored, so I figured that we’d play a game.” Craig
replied, egging Joe on perfectly.

“And what kind of game was that?”

“One where you are not good at clearly. What part of
that did you not get?”

“Too bad you can’t say that to my face.”

Boldly, Craig rose up and walked up to Joe and Mark.
Both Joe and Mark had to do a double take. They knew
that nine times out of ten that Craig was ready to go.
But, it seemed like he wanted to fight. All this did was
make them angrier, which was of course working very
much in Craig’s favor.

“What do you want dude?” Mark asked.

“I just want to see you guys actually profess your love to
each other.”

“Fuck do you mean cuz?” Joe asked as he and Mark
looked at each other, both confused with the request.

“I’ve just always wondered why you two always made
these homophobic jokes. I always found them mean
spirited and not very progressive. Then one night, it just
hit. You two are in love with each other and just can’t
admit it. It’s such a tragic love affair isn’t it?”

“Shut the fuck up.” Mark yelled, starting to get the
crowd’s attention.

“Sorry. I just want this for you two. I know that guy
that you two tortured last year would want it too if he
knew. Maybe, just maybe he’s here. You two make
amends. How does that sound?”

“Are you looking for a fight or something Craig?”

“Sorry. I only fight worthy opponents. When you find
one, let me know. Well square up.”

That last little insult was just enough to send Joe over
the edge. Joe swung and missed Craig head. Craig
threw the rest of his soda in Joe’s face as Mark tried to
kick him. Craig was able to miss him and trip Mark.
Everyone in the crowd watched in awe as Craig took on
these guys with ease.

However, Craig was a little disappointed. It was clear
that Joe and Mark were high and drunk, while he was
completely sober. They weren’t able to concrete and
fight him properly. This kind of fight was only going to
get security’s attention and get them kicked out as
Rachel performed and whatever fate would happen
would happen. He needed to really force the issue now.

As Joe and Mark got themselves together, Craig rushed
the two of them with full force, falling onto the football
field. This really was able to get everyone’s and I mean
everyone’s attention on the fight. Craig socked Joe in
the face as Joe began to fly swat. Mark was under Joe
and immobile.

Craig had to constantly look up and see if Rachel’s eyes
were on him now as security drew closer. He rolled over
and was able to drive Joe and Mark more closer to where
the cheerleaders were. Now he really needed to do
something to seal the deal.

“You two have always been the biggest fucking trolls
around! There’s nothing that you do that adds value to
this school! Your test scores drop us out of the top 50
percentile!”

Finally, Rachel looked up along with all the other
cheerleaders and was shocked at what she saw. Sudden
indecision was fused inside of her. She was ready to go
and perform. But there was no way that could just let
them fight.

“You are fucking tools!” Rachel yelled as she rushed
out onto the field and went towards the middle of the
fight.

Just as she got there, security came and separated them.
Then police officers showed up and began to put Craig,
Joe, and Mark in handcuffs. Rachel watched in horror as
she ran to Craig, hoping that somehow, she could aide
him.

“Let him go!” Rachel shouted to the officer that had
apprehended Craig.

“Do you know this guy?” The officer asked Rachel,
almost appearing confused at the idea of her being
associated with Craig.

“Yes, I do! He’s my special friend!”

“Special friend?”

“He’s my boyfriend!”

Craig’s face turned to a face of pleasant shock when
Rachel said this. He knew that she was doing all of this
just to get him out of the situation. But, he couldn’t get
over how flattering that sounded. A hot cheerleading
proclaiming publicly that he was her boyfriend. It was
like a dream come true.

“Well, you can hang with him in the office if you want.
But, he isn’t going to be free anytime soon now.”

The amount of indecision that was on Rachel’s face
could be read from a mile away. Rachel went through a
whole range of emotions. She had to choose between
not being able to cheer or to be with Craig and help him
out. As self-doubt came upon Craig, he was sure that
Rachel was going to choose to cheer. It just made too
much sense. At the end of the day, he was not her
boyfriend.

“Okay.” Rachel said, deciding to go with them.

You could tell that even the police officer himself was
struck by this. While he couldn’t externalize it, Craig
was internally over joyed. Everything had actually gone
according to plan. Rachel was going to not cheer. And
she would be spared of any ill fate that was coming her
way. At least for the moment, that is.

“Okay. Follow us then.” The police officer told her,
still working on figuring out just what the fuck was
going on.

Rachel walked right beside Craig as security and the
police officer him in. He inspected Rachel as they
walked. It did not take much deductive reasoning at all
to see that she was in fact not happy with him at all.
Disgusted wouldn’t be the right word to use. More
along the lines of mind boggled. Nevertheless, she was
at the very least royally pissed off at not being able to
cheer.

As they walked on, Craig figured that he had to say
something to make her feel better about what was going
on. Anything at all would help. The more spontaneous,
the better it would be.

“Rach…”

“Please, shut the fuck up.”

Shut out.

Chapter Three: The girl whose tears were not seen

Later that night Craig was working on his homework, begrudgingly of course, when his cell phone went off. He was a little caught off by this. Ever since the incident last
year he really hadn’t received many calls or texts or at in all reality, he’s texted the most that he’s had in months ever since his future self began his
communication with him.

His phone then began to buzz. Once he took a look his
phone and was now startled at what he saw. It was
Rachel. He had totally forgotten about her. With Marcy
now in the picture everything was beginning to take a
different turn. The realization that he could not count
out Marcy as a real suspect came over him. Memories of
some of the sad expressions that she had came back to
him. She was as easy on the eyes as a fresh rainbow,
shimmering in the sky. But, she had an inner world that
was clearly filled with some sort of conflict.

Craig took one last deep breath as he stared at the
phone. He then picked up the phone with a mixture of
hesitation and excitement.

“Hey.”

“Hey you. What’s up?”

“Nothing really, just doing some homework.”

“Ah yeah, so true. You always were anal of getting your
homework done.”

“It’s 10% of your grade. You never know when you’ll
need that 10%.”

“Indeed. It’ll be relevant when you least expect it.”

 

There was that brief semi awkward silence on the
phone. The kind where both parties have a sense that the
conversation’s flow points to something deeper and
more interesting. But the fear of playing their cards to
early makes them not know what needs to be said in the
moment.

“Umm, did you want to talk about anything in
particular?” Craig asked, making a move to pry into
Rachel’s mind.

“Well, I guess just wanted to make sure that you were
going to be able to go game and party on Friday night.”

“Of course. It sounds like it’s going to fun.”

“Yeah, I think so.”

 

Another semi awkward silence occurred. Craig was
picking up on Rachel’s tone a bit. It just sounded a lot
more confident than it usually was. Over the phone she
felt free to convey what only her body language could do
in person.

“How was your day Rachel? Did anything happen?”

“Nothing major. Just kind of a boring day. Same shit,
ya know?”

“You didn’t practice today or something?”

“No, I did. But that’s what I mean. Just the same shit.”

“You don’t like cheerleading anymore or something.”

“No, it’s not that. I’ve just been doing it for a little bit of
a while now. And even though it’s still fun, I’m feeling
really dreary about it at all. I feel nothing now when it
comes to cheerleading to be honest.”

Rachel began to unfold right into Craig’s ears. He
could always sense something within her, however he
could not see her expressing these kinds of feelings to
him. It just didn’t seem to fit with the image of her that
was holding space in his head.

“Why do you still do it?”

“Because, I’d feel worse without it. Sorry, I’m basically
explaining to you how I am a mess. You’re probably
starting to think that I’m just some basket case.”

“No, no, no, c’om Rachel. It’s okay to be honest with
me. You should know by now that I’m not the
judgmental type.”

“True. You are different than everyone. For better or
worse, you are who you are.”
.”

“You don’t have to worry about that around me.”

“Shit Craig, nobody else ever talks like you. Why is
that?”

“It’s because they don’t do their homework.”

“Haha! Right. I guess I should check mine out huh?”

“Not a bad idea.”

“That was really… nice. I’ll call you later.”

“Looking forward to it.”

As Craig and Rachel hung up, Craig began to go over
what just happened. Obviously, Rachel had more
sadness that existed within her than he could imagine.
When he really decided to sit down and consider
everything it really didn’t feel so out of whack. There
was always something about Rachel that made her feel
mysterious. A something that made her feel just out of
reach. It was an attractive quality, that was to be sure.
But, it also made for shocking revelations. It was like
behind your persona her true self was so far away that
you couldn’t even make it out when you took a look.

There was enough evidence for Craig to add her to the
suspect list. It was now Rachel and Marcy. Two
beautiful cheerleaders, one junior varsity, the other
varsity. Both kinder than one would think girls like that
would choose to be. And one of them could potentially
be suicidal. It did not make any kind of sense to him.

Craig’s cell phone went off again, this time it was none
other than Marcy. It was as if the universe was
manifesting these women to get in contact with him.
Craig couldn’t even finish filing away the information
that he had gathered on Rachel. He now had to deal with
his next suspect in line.

“Hello?” Craig said as he picked up the phone. He was
hoping that he could handle this call in a similar fashion
that he did with Rachel.

“Yo.” Marcy answered, surprising Craig will her chilled
demeanor. You haven’t hit me up yet.”

“Sorry. I’ve been busy.”

“Doing what? Homework?”

“Now I feel that f I answered honestly you’d laugh. And
I would feel embarrassed. That would suck.”

“Oh my goodness. No worries. My parents are forcing
me to do it right now. “Looks like that makes the two of
us.”

“What class?”

“It’s for Earth and Space. Got to find me some rocks.
You?”

“It’s for physics. I’m measuring the velocity on formula
one cars”

“You’re taking physics?”

“Unfortunately, yes.”

“That’s insane.”

“No, all it is, is insanely unfortunate.”

“Haha, you have a kinda sad sense of humor. But, I
kinda like it.”

“Why does it make you laugh?”

“Because it stands out from the rest of the mediocrity at
school.”

“Good to be above mediocrity.”

“You’re doing a better job than me.”

Craig was able to catch that little self-defeating swipe
that Marcy just took at herself. It wasn’t much. But
after speaking with Rachel he knew all too well now that
it was going to lead to something that was much more
profoundly serious and melancholy.

“What was that all about?’ Craig asked not just to figure
out how serious of a suspect she should be, but out of
actual concern as well.”

“Oh, don’t worry about it. I think I just let something
out that I didn’t want to let out.”

“A Freudian slip?’

“Sorta. Anyways, when are you asking me out?”

Craig stopped breathing for a moment. That
forwardness that Marcy exhibited was daunting yet so
attractive. It was just such a rare thing for a girl to be as
up front as she was. Marcy wasn’t just a girl, she was becoming a woman.

“Well?” Marcy asked, growing impatient with Craig’s
inaction.

“You’re just going to put me on the stop there I guess.
Okay, I’ll bite. Why don’t we go out tomorrow night?”

“There we go. And where will be going out?”

“Cheesyburger Chessyburger is a great spot. I’ll even
pay for dessert.”

“Nice! A real, true gentleman!”

“You’re too kind.”

“You’re a sweet boy Craig. Don’t worry, I’ll whip you
into shape.”

“I’d like to see what that entails.”

“Teehee. Getting a little bold? It’s pretty damn cute.”

“You know me.”

“Well, that’s why I called. I wanted to see if you had the
balls to ask me out. You check out.”

“Glad that I could help you with your research project.”

“You’ve been a good test subject. I’ll see you there
tomorrow night at seven. Goodnight.”

“Goodnight.”

After he hung up the phone, Craig had to do a double
take of himself in the mirror. Who was this person that
he was becoming? Smooth, suave, and strongly flirting?
It did not appear to be him. But alas, it was him. And it
felt right. He wondered if this side of him had been
there all along. If this was just due to the extreme and
extraordinary circumstances that he was under. Then he
wondered if any of that mattered. He was just enjoying
the new coat that he was wearing. Even if it was only
temporary.

The next day went by at a pace that was way too fast
for Craig. He suddenly felt nerves regarding his date
with Marcy. He wasn’t sure how to balance the pleasure
aspect with the actual work. Marcy seemed like a fun
girl and he would love to date her. The only thing was
he had to check for suicidal signs not only for her sake,
but for the sake of humanity and the universe at large.

Nothing seemed to really faze Craig today. Even at the
club meeting he wasn’t completely present to Amy’s
usual jabs. He hardly participated in anything and left
swiftly.

“What’s up with him?” Leanna asked with confusion
and concern.

“I don’t know.” Amy responded with slight malice.
That cheerleader is turning him into a boring bitch.”

“Amy, are you jealous?!?” Claire asked with a ton of
zealous like she was wanting to say something like that
the whole time.

Amy’s face lit up a bright red after this. It didn’t matter
what she said after that. Her face was redder than
Rudolph’s nose. She had given herself away. Not
having many options to save face, she gave Claire a
swift kick the shins, knocking her down to the ground.

“Just shut the fuck up, okay?” Amy said as she walked
away. Claire was still on the ground seething in pain as
Leanna dropped down to her side.

Just as Craig was about to exit the school, Ryan was
able to catch up to him as he popped his head out of
nowhere.

“How did you…” Craig started.

“Earth angel, remember?” Ryan said.

“That allows you to hold the powers of a ninja?”

“I would actually contest that ninja stole the element of
surprise from us.”

“I bet.”

“What’s on the docket tonight Craig?’

“I’m finally going to be able to investigate Marcy.”

“You’re making it sound like you are a cop or
something. Lighten up a little and have fun.”

“Okay, and how is that going to serve me?”

“You’ll catch more flies with honey than vinegar.”

“I can’t believe that you would say something so basic,
generic, and cliché.”

“Simplistic truths tend basic, generic, and cliché tend to

That’s why people also tend to write them off.”

“Sounds good.”

“I know this isn’t the kind of situation that would have
dreamed of…”

“Please stop talking like that.”

“However, there are lessons in every situation that you
have been, are in, and will be in. It is simply up to you
to locate those lessons.”

“Right.”

“Just act like it’s an actual date. Connect with her. Read
her. Get to know her. You’ll be surprised at how easy
everything will be after that.”

“Okay bro, got it. Do you have anything else to say?
Like something that is actually helpful?”

“Just because someone is feeling somber doesn’t equate
to suicidal thoughts. May sound obvious, but it will be
easy for you to look at someone who is sad or hating life
and think that they are going to off themselves. Truth be
told most people aren’t brave enough to go ahead and
kill themselves. That’s why I’ve always thought it’s
funny how in this world people who killed themselves
were considered cowards. Silting your wrist isn’t for the
faint of heart.”

The mere thought of someone silting their wrist
disturbed Craig. He had been focused on how this will
affect the whole universe. But with Ryan’s colorful
explanation it really began to hit home that some young
lady is going to take her own life away because the pain
is too much if he can’t get to her. The sense of
responsibility that he had over this increased ten fold.

“You okay Craig?” Ryan asked as he saw the
physiological changes that were going on with Craig.

“Yeah man. “Just, damn.”

“It’s the reality of taking your own life away. The nature
of the beast if you will. It isn’t pretty. But it grounded
in a sincere, hardcore truth.”

“Yeah man.”

“Well, I must be off and so must you.” Ryan said as he
began to walk away. He then stopped and turned back
again to address Craig one more time. Oh, and please,
just relax and don’t take any of this too seriously.”

As Ryan walked away, Craig thought to himself how
full of shit that last sentence from Ryan was. How the
hell was he not going to take any of this seriously?
Especially with what he had just been told. Maybe he
was just fucking with him. If he was, it worked like a
charm.

Later that night Craig found himself right outside the
Cheesyburger Cheesyburger, awaiting Marcy’s arrival.
As he stood in the late summer breeze he received a new
text from his future self.

“Don’t let yourself get too caught up in the moment.
Focus on the task at hand. Look for signs. Don’t let
anything slip. “Listen to her like you would if you were
playing the piano.”

The directness of his future self this time around really
shook Craig up a bit. There had to be a very serious
reason for this. Was it possible that his future self
already knew the outcome of the date? It made sense as
he is dealing with the results. If that was the case, then
was he always meant to go out with Marcy? If so, how ‘
would he had met her? Just as Craig was getting lost in
head his future self decided to send him another text.

“Quit being in your head so damn much. “You’re going
to regret that when you are my age.”

Craig straighten up after reading this, which was
perfect timing. Marcy had just arrived. She was dressed
so casually, albeit upscale. Lowkey upscale. A nice
simple blue skirt, a simple white top, and her blonde hair
was flowing as always. Craig looked at her in awe as
she drew closer. Recognizing that this would not be a
good look, he straight himself up as she approached him.

“Hey you.” Marcy said in a flirtatious manner.”

“Hey, hey.” Craig replied, regretting saying the
unnecessary second hey. “You look nice.”

“Pfffff. This was nothing. “All I thought about was how
I could make your jaw drop without you thinking that
I’m some kind of easy cheerleader fantasy.”

“Not a bad dynamic to go for.”

“Shall we go in?”

Enjoying the moment, Craig and Marcy had a seat at
their booth and the server took their orders as they got
settled in. Craig made sure to begin to inspect Marcy’s
body language from the start. She seemed happy, yet
with the constant touching of her hair she was obviously
nervous. Craig was pleasantly surprised by her nerves of
course. He didn’t think in his wildest dreams that could
have that kind of effect on her. As he noticed her pupils
dilate it became more and more obvious that she was
growing more and more self-conscious. No signs of a
suicidal girl so far and that made him feel calm.

“I always liked crazy straws.” Marcy said, breaking
Craig out of his pattern of thought. “I wish
they had them here. Takes me back to when my mom
would make lemonade in the summer and give us crazy
straws. I always had a purple one.”

“Oddly enough, I don’t really see anyone using crazy straws anymore.”

“That’s because there are no more trendsetters in the world. All it takes is one person who is
seen as cool to step up and embrace them. After that watch, it’s back in.”

“Retro.”

“Precisely.”

“It’s kinda like how people wear those old NASCAR t-shirts. They are probably not even fans.
“But ever since Elle Goulding wore one, it’s been a thing.”

“Yeah, right. “And she’s not even that cool!”

Craig and Marcy shared a nice buoyant laugh with one
another over Marcy’s crack. As Craig began to gather
himself back together he noticed how Marcy’s face
turned a but melancholic. This was the first time that he
had seen her face shift to a more down expression. What
could this conversation had made her think of?

Drawing in closer, Craig smiled at Marcy, staring into
her eyes. Marcy mirrored his behavior, clearly trying to
hide what she as feeling. Craig being able to take note
of this behavior of a way to get her true self to spring
out.

“I heard that you’ve been cheerleading for a long time.
You must be passionate about it. How did you first fall
in love with it?”

“Umm.” Marcy said, looking down on the ground with
his pointed towards the left. Craig couldn’t exactly tell
what this meant. But part of him knew that this wasn’t
very positive body language.

“Indecision?”

“You can say that.”

“What’s going on?”

Straightening herself up, Marcy and looked Craig
squarely in the eyes. The more time that passed, the
more that Craig was really beginning to enjoy the time
that he was spending with Marcy. He was starting to be
able to appreciate her depths, and he wasn’t even at the
mid-level of her being.

“My mom was a cheerleader. Big surprise. Anyway,
she is the reason that I became a cheerleader. She put
me in gymnastics, which I hated, then the pom squad,
and cheerleading in high school only made sense. I
don’t know, I just feel as if I’m just living someone else
life. I don’t feel like I’ve ever truly lived at all.
Sometimes I feel like I’m just wasting my time.”

An awkward silence grew between the two has Marcy
turned her head sideways. What she didn’t want to
happen, happened. And that was judgement from Craig.
Craig didn’t mean for this to happen and quickly realized
that this had occurred. He knew that it was paramount to
think of something considerate to say. But the words
just weren’t coming out. He was just going to have to
wing it.

“I remember how one of my sisters put on one those
cheerleading shows on Bravo. I watched twenty-nine
seconds of it and said to myself “those cheer moms are
bitches.”

“Hate to say it, but most cheer moms are worse. Mine
certainly was.”

“In what way?”

“She didn’t care if it was a good performance. It needed
to be a knockout punch each and every time, no matter
what. And if it wasn’t I’d get it.”

“Get what?”

Suddenly, Marcy tears emerged from Marcy’s eyes as
she desperately tried to hang on to them. Craig watched
as he began to feel bad about heading down this route.
Only he had no choice. If he wasn’t going to do it then
no one would, and everything would be done for good.
He knew that he had to keep pushing. No matter what.

“What do you mean Marcy?”

Sitting there, Marcy was not able to calibrate just what
she should say. The inner conflict going on in front of
Craig’s eyes was simply compelling to watch. Normally
in a conversation he would just wait for his turn to talk
and not take the time to really let someone else talk.
However, in the instance with all that was going on, it
became a riveting turn of events before their eyes.

“She… she would hit me when I didn’t do as well as she
had hoped.”

At that moment Craig’s jaws wanted to drop right to the
ground and then rush across the table to comfort Marcy.
But he knew that doing so would just make everything
proceed into a completely opposite direction. He had to
keep his cool and stayed calm.

“Wow. “I’m sorry to hear that Marcy.”

“Why would you be sorry? You weren’t there. You
didn’t even know me. There was nothing that you could

have done.”

That sense that one gets when they feel that that the
energy beneath the words is really pointing towards
something else washed over Craig in abundance. Even
Marcy’s words just seemed a little misplaced. Like she
was here, but really, she was somewhere else in her
mind. And not willing, but as if she were a prisoner.

Now was the time that Craig had to carefully weigh the
pros and cons. Yes, she could indeed be suicidal and
this could be just what can ignite her recovery in a
beautiful, yet rough sort of way. Though, at the same
token, was he just igniting her depression? That thought
just couldn’t stay below in Craig’s consciousness.

As Craig continued to ponder these thoughts, a waitress
named Isabelle Sanchez walked by him and Marcy.
Isabelle also went to the same school as them. Craig barely recognized her. Yet, what he did recognize were the tattoos feel with dark imagery and that emo look on
her face. He was filled with intrigue for a multitude of
reasons. Yes, he found her to be quite attractive. But
more importantly, his intuition was saying that he
shouldn’t just write her off like he normally would.

“Do you know her?” Marcy asked Craig, noticing how
hard he was staring at Isabelle.

“No.” Craig answered, not wanting Marcy to suspect that
he was interested in her in a romantic sense. “I was
actually just about to ask you that.”

“Funny question to ask. She and I used to be decently
close friends. She knows how to style hair and would
really help me out with that all the time.”

“What happened?”

“I began to suspect that she was a lesbian and stopped
hanging out with her. Didn’t feel like getting felt up by
another girl.”

“What do you mean by that? “What are you trying to say?”

“Look, I’m not saying that she is a full out one ya know?
But, if the shoe fits…”

“Did you ever speak to her about that?”

“No.”

“Why not?”

“Because I didn’t really care about that once I felt
violated. Why are we even talking about her? Do you
want to go out with her or something?”

“Just curious.”

“Well, curb it.”

A clearer picture of who Marcy was began to develop
in front of Craig’s eyes. All in all, he saw her as a
bubbly cheerleader. But, with all this new information
that was coming at him now, he could see that she has
had a rather rough upbringing. And that rather rough
upbringing had turned her into a bit of a bitch.

Once Craig identified this crucial trait of hers, she
realized that there was in fact no way that she was the
girl that was committing suicide. She was not in fact
down on herself. She just craved the attention. And she
didn’t get that said attention things were NOT okay.
Not at all.

“I have to go.” Craig said as he quickly excused
himself.”

“Umm, excuse me?” Marcy responded in a nagging
tone. “What the fuck do you think you’re doing?”

“I’ve got business to take care of. Text me. Or not.”

“You’ve got to be fucking kidding me! As if!”

Before Marcy could utter more words, Craig was
already in the kitchen, looking in Isabelle. It didn’t
matter that the kitchen staff was blocking him and
wanted him out, he was not going to be denied in his
search. And he at last found Isabelle, sitting down
during her break.

“Isabelle!” Craig shouted out as the kitchen staff
grabbed him.

“You go to my school, don’t you?” Isabelle asked in a
reserved, yet surprised manner.

“Yeah! I’m Craig, Craig Marshall! And I just wanted to
talk!”

“Okay… Can you guys let him go?”

The kitchen stuff begrudgingly released Craig as he ran
up to where Isabelle was sitting. She was enjoying a
tuna melt sandwich, all by her lonesome. Craig sat right
down next her, trying to make sure that he wasn’t
imposing himself on her or freaking her out in any way.

“What do you want with me?” Isabelle asked in what
seemed like an overly suspicious way to Craig.

“I was in here and recognized you. “I just wanted to
talk.”

Isabelle gave Craig a strange little look. It was that
kind of look that said, yeah right. Bullshit. The raised
eyebrow really conveyed the sense of what the fuck that
was going on inside of Isabelle. Craig knew that he had
to think of another, better way to draw her in. To be able
to make her feel safe within instead of rushing.

“I know that this just feels out of left field.” Craig
started, pulling what he could out of his ass.

“But, I’ve just always been intrigued by you.”

Suddenly that expression of Isabelle’s expression began
to lighten up a bit. Instead of the what the fuck look, she
began to show a more open, curious look. Craig was
able to pick up on this and felt comfortable to be
continue on an proceed forward.

“I guess what I am say is that I’ve always wanted to get
to know you. But I’ve never had the guts to go up to
you.”

“Guts? “What’s so scary about me.”

“I mean, you’re pretty.”

“You really think that I’m pretty?”

“Of course. Most of the guys at school do.”

“What the fuck are you talking about? That can’t be
true. Nobody ever fucking asks me out.”

“That’s because guys are scared to death that girls like you will turn them down. Can’t take it.”

As Isabelle now started to have not only a more
confident look on her face, but more confident body
language, Craig was sensing that she was beginning to
trust him. Now was the time to really lay into her. It
was going to be a risk, but pushing the limit would at
least yield some kind of result.

“I was out there with Marcy.”

Once what he said was said, Isabelle began to freeze
up. You could feel the radiance of her goose bumps
coming up on her skin. Craig for a moment felt bad
about all of this. But he knew that this was the right
thing to do.

“She was telling me something about a time where the
two of you were hanging out. To me, it just sounded
like a cheap way to make herself look cool. Regardless,
it drove me to want to talk to you.”

“How do you know what she said isn’t true?” Isabelle
asked in a bitingly defensive manner. All these signs
were bad in a good way. She was acting like this for
some reason. Where Craig would have been repulsed by
this previously, he was even more drawn into her. All
the suspects that he had gathered thus far, Isabelle was
by far the most intriguing of the bunch.

“What do you think she said?”

“That I like girls or some shit like that. Correct?”

“Yeah, that is correct.”

“See. Do you believe it?

“I don’t know. Is it true?”

“It’s certainly a half truth.”

Craig had to calm down the excitement that was
building in him after Isabelle’s answer. He truly had no
idea what she was. But, as a 15-year-old young man, the
answer that she gave him was titillating to say the least.

“So, you…”

“Yes, I am bisexual. Is that what you were seeking?”

“No, no, no. Please, give me more credit than that. I
just thought…”

“If you say interesting one more time…”

Craig picked up Isabelle’s hands, attempting to get
closer to her. Perhaps she lacked a great deal of human
communication because her eyes lit up at this action. It
was the first time that he’d seen even a hint of a smile
from her. A glimmer of hope shined through her eyes at
that moment. It was crazy what a simple touch could do.

The two stared into each other’s eyes for a moment. Both were enjoying really connecting with
each without even saying a word. As Craig stared into Isabelle’s eyes it was as though all those
things that he had heard about intimacy finally started to click for him. It felt way better than he
had imagined it to be in his head.

“Is that all you wanted?” Isabelle asked, now confused and ready to move on.

“No, no. “I want to get to know you.”

“You’re asking me out?”

“I guess so.”

“You guess so?”

“I am! “I am!”

“Ha, this is too weird.”

“Listen, there’s a party after the football game on Friday,
why don’t you meet me up there. It doesn’t have to be
an official date. Just meet up, hang out, and have a good
time. If there’s something cool, if not who cares. “Let’s
just see if we can have a great time.”

“Ummm.”

“No need for any umms. Just say yes.”

“Yes, yes I’ll go. Is that good enough for you?”

“Close enough to what I was looking for.”

“Good, because you were beginning to come fucking
annoying.”

“Apologies. I just wanted to really go after what I
wanted there for a second I guess.”

“I’ll say.”

“But, it’s going to be a great time. What’s your number?
I’ll text you the address.”

“I don’t have a phone.”

Craig was once again seized by the spontaneity of the
moment. He pondered just how she could not have a
phone when everyone else in school had one. The guys
who sold weed had three or four. Then, once he thought
back to Marcy, things then went back into focus yet
again.

“Oh. Do you have a facebook?”

“For appearances.”

“Maybe you can use it for real this one time. Add me.”

Whipping out his phone, Craig looked Isabelle up on
facebook and sent her request. Actually somewhat
flattered, Isabella took out her phone and accepted the
friend request right in front of his eyes. It had worked.
He reached her.

“Send me a message any time that you want to talk.
Okay?”

“Okay, sounds good.”

“Well, I guess I’m going to leave you to it. “See you
Friday.”

“See ya.”

Craig left the back of the restaurant with a sense of
accomplishment. After feeling a bit lost, seemingly out
of nowhere came a hint of lucidity on the horizon.
Marcy being a bad lead got him to Isabella, a good lead.
It felt a tiny bit outlandish for him to be thinking like
this. Nevertheless, he was feeling elevated now.

Then, just like clockwork.

“Don’t forget your friends.” His future self said in the
text.

“What are you talking about?” Craig asked.

“Whatever you resist, persists.”

“What? Can you be anymore fucking dense?”

Craig waited for his retort. But nothing came back to
him. He stood there for five minutes and nothing came
back to him.

“What the hell was that all about?”

 

Chapter Two: Paths that lead ya somewhere and nowhere

It was suddenly lunch time. As students now found
themselves completely immersed inside their closed off
groups, Craig sat in the halls alone. He had a
contemplative stare on his face that seemed relentless.
He stared at his phone coldly, not believing the exchange
that had just taken place with his future self. How could
this be? A girl is going to commit suicide and now it’s
up to him to find her. And if he can’t find her and she
does off himself the universe will be altered forever? It
just didn’t seem fair to him that this would be put upon
him.

As Craig continued to drop into the abyss that is his
mind, Ryan and Clarice noticed Craig as they wandered
through the halls in a somewhat happy go lucky manner.
As they noticed the expression on Craig’s face they
couldn’t help but become alarmed and concerned
regarding his mental state. And the fact that he didn’t
take notice of them was disconcerting as well.

“Hey!” The two of them shouted to Craig, effectively
breaking him out of the prison of his mind.

“Oh hey, whattup?”

“Are you okay?” Claire asked with genuine concern.
You seemed gone for a second.”

“Like you were tripping on some dope ass shrooms or
something.” Ryan blurted it out in what was now
obviously his normal state.

“Yeah, I’m fine. I just get a little squirrely when I’m
hungry.”

“But, it’s lunch.” Claire so kindly pointed out. “Why
don’t you just go eat?”

“My parents forgot to give me the check for lunch
money.”

Claire then handed Craig a bright red apple seemingly
out of nowhere. She had a nice radiant smile on her face
as the apple pointed towards him. Craig couldn’t help
but break a smile at her strange, yet gentle kindness.

“Eat up!” Claire said, hoping to inject some enthusiasm
into Craig.

“Thanks Claire.” Craig said as he bit into the apple.
You could see a sense of relief as his thoughts went
away from the issue at hand and he focused on
masticating the apple.

“Did you give that future self-visualization a go man?”
Ryan asked.

“Yeah.”

“What went down?”

“Not much of anything at all actually.”

“Bummer deal. I got to speak my future self. Well, for a
little bit anyway. It was hard to stay connected and I just
lost focus. Although, I did catch him saying something
about chemistry.

“Something about it being important.”

“Aren’t you failing chemistry?” Claire asks.

“Yeah… oh shit.”

“And you Claire?” Craig asked.

“I did talk to my future self! She was so cool! She had
this beautiful, yet serious look to her. And she was so
smart. Her advice to me was to not waste my time
gossiping. How deep is that? “I can’t believe that when
I turn 25 I’m going to be like that!”

“Oh wow.” Craig said, really trying to hide the obvious
disappointment on his face. How was it that he is the
only one that had the kind of contact with his future self?
Craig’s head sinks down further as Ryan and Claire just
can’t help but feel sorry for him.

“Yo.” Ryan called out to Craig. We are going to go and
finish eating outside. “If you don’t have something to do
you should come with.”

“It’s cool.” Craig replied in a self-defeating way.
wouldn’t want to bother you two.”

“What the hell are you talking about?” Claire asked in a
surprisingly assertive manner. “How would you bother
us?”

“I don’t know. “But I’m positive that I would find a
way.”

“Oh, shut up. You’re coming whether you like it or not.
“You got that?”

“Come again?”

“Do I seriously have to repeat myself?”
Moments later Craig found himself outside with Ryan
and Claire, laying across the field, staring into the blue
sky that was above them. Craig looked at Ryan and
Claire and noticed just how calm and relaxed they were.
But, with what was looming, Craig couldn’t help but be
just a little tense. Not that anyone could truly blame him
of course. Who was this girl? How in the hell is it going
to be possible to find her? Do I know her? Or is she
some total stranger? What if she is some transfer student
that won’t actually be here until October? What if it was
Amy? Leanna? Rachel? Or even Claire? These were
the quality of thoughts that went through Craig’s mind
right now.

Craig looked at Claire to see if there was anything
about her expression that would suggest that she would
do such an act. He inspected her face for any signs of
covert sadness, any kind of sign at all for that matter. As
Craig turned over to Claire to see any warning signs,
Ryan noticed the subtle shifts with Craig’s body
language and found it peculiar and felt compelled to say
something.

“How’s your schedule treating you Craig?” Ryan asked
wanting to free Craig from his mind once again.

“Oh, you know.” Replied Craig in a hasty fashion as he
realized that he had been seen. It’s the same shit just
like last year. “But, why the generic ass question?”

“Well, we don’t know each other that well. So, I
figured that it would work out better to start a
conversation on such common grounds.”

“Yeah, I guess. “Still boring.”

“Do you get bored a lot?”

“I haven’t really given it a lot of thought. I guess that I
do get bored a lot.”

“Maybe you just aren’t fully present in the moment
enough. Look around you and breathe. “If you are fully
present with what’s right in front of you, then you can
never be bored.”

Craig looked up at the sky as he allowed those words to
hit him just a bit. Staring at the sky, he couldn’t help but
ponder if he truly ever is present at all.

“I’ve concluded that my future self has been speaking to
me this whole time.” Claire announced.

“In what ways?” Ryan asked.

“When you think about it, it’s pretty obvious. There are
clouds in the sky that remind me of my hello kitty doll.
It’s crazy, she’s been trying to send me a message this
whole time.”

Just as Claire said that, Craig got a text from guess who?
His future self.

“You must really feel comfortable about the direction
that you’re taking.”

Craig briefly stared at the text as a feeling of horror
arose within him. He knew that his future self was
correct about his underlying message. He couldn’t just
lay around here like everything was fine. He had to stay
mobile and take some serious action.

“I got to take care of some shit before class.” Craig
announced as he quickly rose up from the ground. Ryan
and Claire looked to him as if they were letting him
know that his actions seemed too abrupt to be real.

“I guess we’ll see you at the club then bro.” Ryan said.

“Guess so.”

As lunch neared its completion, Craig stood still in the
hallway as he began to scan. What he was trying to do
was convince himself that this was all just a very
elaborate practical joke. However, he knew that wasn’t
the case because there really wasn’t anyone close enough
to him for this to be the case. Unless his old comrades
were behind this, staging a reunion. He pegged that to
be highly unlikely.

After a few more moments pass and Craig noticed that
the bell was about to ring, he finally decides to just pull
the trigger and text his future self for advice. What harm
would come of it? Might as well give it a shot.

He asked his future self if there was anything that he
could do to figure out just who this person could be.
Surprisingly, he got a quick response from him.

“Go up to someone who intimidates you.”

Craig instantly knew what he meant of course. Go to a
girl that he thought was really hot. Nothing could prove
to be more intimidating to a young man’s psyche than
getting rejected by a girl that not only he saw hot, but
most of the guys and girls in the school did as well. The
mere thought of this made Craig’s heart faint.

The thing is, Craig knew that this wasn’t the time to
cower away. That this was in fact the time for inspired
action. And he certainly had the proper inspiration now.

So, Craig did a quick scan for the hottest girl that was
in his peripheral vision. His eyes caught and settled on
one Marcy Pryce, a junior and a fantastic cheerleader.
She was the prime example of the girl that guys would
discuss when bringing up who really turned them on.
The type of girl that if she smiled and looked you in the
eye that you were going to be thinking about that for
exactly one week.

Craig looked at Marcy and his fight or flight response
started going off. The words “no way” popped into his
head a few times. Although, as much as he wanted to
just not do it, he realized that it was his fate. He had no
choice in matter. Either go up to Marcy or have the
universe be altered forever because he was too scared.

After taking a few deep breaths, Craig went in. He
made sure that he had the most confident and cool look
that he could think of. He thought of Denzel
Washington walking the red carpet. As he walked up to
Marcy he noticed that she had four other girls that were
nearly as beautiful as her. Craig began to wonder why
hot girls always hung out in such big groups. It just
made everything that much harder.

As Craig stepped to Marcy, the girls that were orbiting
around her noticed. A look of confusion crossed their
faces as Craig drew in closer and closer. That familiar
feeling of resistance arose up within him with the
sharpness of a brand-new Cuisinart. He just wanted
to drop back and have nothing to do with them at all. He
also knew that if he were to do that then that could spell
the universe as he knew it. So, he pushed on.

“Hey.” Craig, mustering the courage to speak to Marcy.
“I’m Craig.”

“Hey.” Marcy said with as much apathy as one could
imagine with a greeting. “Marcy.”

Craig could tell instantly that she had her guards up. It
was perhaps because she’s had a ton of scrubs hit on her
quite a bit of the time. So, Craig just saying hey to her
simply was not going to cut it.

“I kept up with how you and the cheerleading squad did
at the nationals.” Craig said to her. He was just pulling
this out of his ass. But, it was enough to create a pattern
interruption where Marcy’s attention was concerned.
“It was quite spectacular actually. It’s going to be cool
to see you as the captain next year.”

Marcy’s face lit up like a sunrise crossed her face.
Craig was surprised that his simple ass words could
bring such a reaction to such an attractive young lady.
All she wanted right then and there were some kind
words. And that was all that it took to get the ball rolling
in the direction of Craig’s favor.

“Wow, thank you!” Marcy said with a sweet sound of
joy being expressed through her voice. Her friends
stared at her and Craig in disbelief. Marcy wasn’t the
type of girl that would just fall for a guy like that.
Especially a non-athlete lower classman. “It’s a ton of
work, but it can be really life affirming sometimes!”

Now that was not something that Craig expected to
hear from Marcy’s mouth. Life affirming? He had just
judged her as an airhead hot cheerleader like every other.
He didn’t think that cheerleading meant more to her than
the notoriety that came along with it.

“What makes it life affirming for you?”

“Just being able to set a goal and being able to see it
through with the girls. I never feel more alive than when
I am cheering. It’s like I’m able to totally be myself in
front of other people and it’s accepted. You know what I
mean?”

“Yeah, I know what you mean. The energy within you
when you cheer is your true essence.”

And just like that, Marcy lit up even more. Craig was
beginning to even surprise himself. He knew that he
could use his words well in certain situations. However,
he didn’t think that a few kind words would get Marcy to
be so receptive and warm to him.

The bell rang, and Marcy stared at Craig with a look of
longing on her face. Craig knew right then and there that
he was in with Marcy. It was now only a matter of
retrieving her number and making plans to see her.
Then, he would be able to investigate her behavior. As
he was about to make a move, Marcy beat him to the
punch.

“Let me get your number.” Marcy said, truly catching
Craig off guard. Her friends were just about as stunned
as well. Marcy handed Craig her phone and he began to
put his number in. He was all giddy inside of course.
But, he managed to keep that self-contained. Marcy then
reached into Craig’s pocket, grabbed his phone and put
her number in. Craig was in awe of the confidence that
she exuded. The realization that he didn’t truly know
who he was dealing with finally dropped in.

“Call or text me. We’ll hang out.”

“For sure.”

And just like that the bell rang. Marcy and her friends
were off as Craig gathered himself together and headed
towards his class. All he truly wanted to do was gather
some information about Marcy to see if she was the
suicide girl. Now suddenly, he has a date with her. It
was as if things were being arranged in his favor by a
puppet master.

Once the last class of the day was over and Craig
bought a couple of slices of pizza, he ran straight to the
club room where everyone except for Amy was already
there. There was a hint of madness on Craig’s face once
he entered the room as everyone was greatly affected by
his energy. Craig looked around briefly as his radar
caught Leanna. He then b-lined right to her.

“Leanna, have you been texting your future self lately?”

“No, not really. Why? What’s going on?”

Leanna’s expression on her face that was as set as
concrete said it all. She was more than a bit alarmed by
Craig’s sense of urgency. As Craig was about to really
press her, Amy walked into the room and the sight did
not appeal to her much at all. She ran over and grabbed
Craig by the collar, jerking him away from Leanna.

“What the fuck do you think you’re doing? Amy asked,
staring Craig right in the eyes as if she was a police
officer and he was some perp that she had just
apprehended.

“Amy! Please tell me if you have been talking to your
future self! I need to…”

Before Craig could even finish, Amy had punched him
in the face, herself being more than a bit alarmed by
Craig’s sense of urgency. Everyone gathered around as
Craig dropped to the floor. Amy then looked down at
Craig as he began to crack his eyes open.

“Dude, what is wrong with you?”

“It’s kind of hard to explain.”

“Do you know where we are? “This is the place for
things that are hard to explained to be properly
explained!”

Craig took a deep breath, exhaled and got himself up
from the grown. He patted his clothing as everyone
looked at him in a confused manner, feeling that
something different was about to be said. Craig then
looked at Amy as his eyes grew with seriousness, but his
face became soft.

“I’ve been communicating with my future self a lot.”

“Like texting back and forth?”

“Yup.”

“Wow!” Claire exclaimed out of nowhere. “How did
you swing that? That sounds so cool!”

“How is that even possible?” Leanna asked.

“Sometimes the future self has an urgent mission and he
must dump it on his past self, being present Craig.”
Amy explained. It is, however a rare occurrence. And
even then, most future selves will tell you about the
mission and that’s the end of it.”

“Sounds like yours is chatty Craig.” Ryan commented.

“The mission is that there is a girl in this school who is
going to commit suicide.” Craig said, at once bringing
the room to a complete (no pun intended) dead silence.
“I have until winter break to find her and stop her. And if
I don’t succeed with this mission then this universe’s
world time will be altered in an significant way forever.

No one truly knew what to do as they stared at Craig.
Then a wave of energy went through Amy, Leanna, and
Claire. What if it was one of them? Was that the reason
Craig was so in their faces, particularly Amy and
Leanna?

“So, umm.” Claire started. Is there any sort of criteria
that allows one to show up on this list?”

“None so far.” Craig replied. “My future self only told
me so far to go up to someone who scared me. So, I
went up to that popular varsity cheerleader, Marcy
Pryce, and started talking to her. I guess we will be
going out soon, so I’ll be able to learn more.”

Amy’s, Leanna’s, and Clarice’s mouths all nearly
dropped at what Craig said. All three became filled up
with their own unique brand of jealousy.

“So, you’re going on a date with Marcy Pryce?” Leanna
asked with a slightly timid voice.

“Craig!” Amy exclaimed. “You can’t just use this
future self shit as an excuse to be a man-whore! This is
about science! Not dates!”

“My intent was not to get a date with her.”

“You’re saying that it just kinda happened huh? Like a
funny story?”

“In a way, pretty much, yeah. Just a byproduct of the
whole ordeal.”

“Whatever. Regardless, this is all damn kinds of serious
on the any kind of scale. This is suicidal girl offs
herself, it’s possible that the events that are taking place
right now may be wiped out.”

“Wiped out?” Claire repeated with great fear in her
voice. “Why?”

“Sometimes a death of one ant can set off the death of a
whole colony.” Amy began. “Even someone who is as
seemingly insignificant like as female teenager can alter
the course of the universe forever. This universe was
built on logical rules, but it sure doesn’t operate on
logic.”

“Why don’t we help you Craig?” Leanna suggested.

But, just like that, Craig got a text from his future self.
He quickly examined it and then showed it to everyone.
Everyone’s eyes widen as they read the text.

“No can do on receiving anyone’s help. “You’re doing
this all alone.”

“It looks like my future self wants me to go at this solo.”

“But, how are you going to be able to figure out the girl
who’s going to kill herself?” Ryan asked. “Chances are
it’s not even Marcy.”

“You’re going to have track down every single girl in the
school.” Claire suggested.

“Shit.” Craig let out. That’s not even possible. “There’s
no way.”

“Well, you’re going to need to actually come with some
sort of criteria then.” Leanna said. That’s going to be
the only way that you’re going to be able to figure this
out.”

“Agreed.” Amy said as she immediately headed over to
the chalk board. “Any ideas of what a suicidal girl is
like?”

“OOOO!” Claire let out. “They look sad!”

“True.” Amy replied as she wrote that down.

“They are lonely!” Leanna said.

“Absolutely.” Amy replied as she wrote that down as well.

“They wear all black.” Ryan said.

“Makes sense.” Amy replied as she wrote that down as
well.

“They want love!” Claire blurted out.

“Indeed.” Amy said as she added that suggestion to the
list.

As the suggestions went on, the list grew and it in fact
got better. At the end of up it, Craig couldn’t help but
just stare at it. It was of course a somber list. However
that had allowed Craig to engage different patterns of
thought in regard to this.

“Well.” Amy said. “Now you’ve got a base to jump from.”

“I guess that is one way of looking at it.” Craig said.

“So, any of us fit the criteria?” Claire asked in a semi
joking way.

The thing is, Craig didn’t see any part of it as a joke.
The same could be said for everyone else in the room. If
there was a meter that measured the amount of
awkwardness that was currently in the room, it would
have broken due to all the pressure that had been
amassed. Amy and Leanna tried to not look at anyone as
they thought of what applied to them on that list.

“I’m going to have to compile more data before I can
properly come to any kind of conclusion.” Craig stated.

The club meeting went on and Craig left without so
much uttering a word. As Craig walked out of the door,
Amy quickly rushed over to Craig grabbed his arm
tightly to get his attention. Judging by the way he
whipped back, he was indeed effective.

“Woman!” Craig shouted, annoyed with her actions.
“What’s the deal?”

“Geez, you are a tender young man, aren’t you?” Amy
commented in a condescending manner.

Amy began to stare at Craig in a manner that became
quite off putting to him. He didn’t quite understand why
was looking at him so intently. He normally enjoyed it
when a girl was looking at him like that. But why Amy,
he could see that her blank expression meant that she
was in deep thought about him. And just what could she
be thinking of so deeply concerning him?

“Why are you looking at me like you’re a famished
shark and I’m so some sort of juicy bait?” Craig
inquired hesitantly.

“You lost your virginity last year, didn’t you?” Amy
asked Craig, just ever so slightly knocking him off of his
rocker.

“Uh…” Craig mumbled, searching to what would make
the most sense as a correct response to this.

“No need to hide it.”

“Yeah, yeah I did. How did you figure that out?”

“It was in your eyes. You looked at me and I could
sense you feeling grounded. But all it really was just
you are acting like you are grounded instead of truly
being grounded.”

“I see. What do you want?”

“How do you feel about Leanna, Claire, and I?”

Craig took a slight step back at this question. It was
clear as a brand-new diamond that had been under
pressure for decades that she was still figuring out how
she felt as far as the criteria that was written on the board
with Amy’s own hand. Craig realized that he had to
handle this very carefully. Tiptoe around it if you will.

“Well. You see Amy, I haven’t quite gone down that
level of thinking surrounding you three yet. It is just a
bit more complex than…”

“Oh, don’t you give me that shit. You’re a guy, you
know how you feel. So. say it.”

“Can I be honest?”

“That’s what I’m asking for!”

“I know how I feel about you three as far as liking how
you look. But outside of that, I don’t know.”

Amy looked at Craig with disbelief as Craig stood there
not sure of what he should be doing. Her face grew
softer and softer as each second went by. Craig could
sense that there were some great emotions building up
inside of her that she was doing her best not to release.
Craig knew that feeling all too well.

“Look dude. Just be honest. I can handle it.”

“Okay… I think that Claire is really sweet with her
southern charm. But naïve as well. Leanna is super nice
and innocent. “Really cool and down to earth chick.”

“And where the hell does that leave me?” Amy barks,
not caring about the other two and truly just wanting to
know where she stands with him.

“You are a bit domineering. But really cute.”

Amy’s face lit up at Craig words. Even with her trying
to hide it her face still shined in regard to his approval.

“Thanks for being honest.”

“Yeah.”

And just like that Craig walked away as Amy watched
in a longing manner. Leanna as she was exiting and
about to speak to Amy noticed the look on her face and
saw Craig walking off in the distance. She was able to
make a distinct connection between the two as Amy
gathered herself together.

“Want to get a burger?” Amy asked, hiding away her feelings.”

“Sure.” Leanna said, putting her arm around Amy,
trying to be a good friend. Leanna than caught another
look from Amy that made her just want to push her on
forward the as the two made their way for the exit.

 

As Craig walked through the halls to clear his head
before leaving he couldn’t just help but be in his head
about everything. Should he consider Amy, Leanna, and
Claire in this? What do the three of them mean to him?
Is there anything beyond the superficial that can arise to
the surface? He had only just met them a few days ago
of course. But, what were feelings that he had bottled
inside about them that he couldn’t express?

Craig was about to leave the school when Ryan caught
up to him. Craig was a bit taken aback by this. He had
been long gone from the club room. How the hell did
Ryan find him? Was he stalking him? If so, what for?

“Craig man.”

“Whattup?”

“I wanted to talk about this whole future self-thing and
your mission a bit.”

“Yeah? What about?”

“Well, I suppose I just want to ask…why you?”

This question took Craig back quite a bit. He could
instantly decipher that Ryan had some hidden motives
underneath that question. But, to what extent he had no
clue. There was no concrete reason to suspect Ryan of
any wrong doing. At the same time, there was no way to
get around his question which was indeed quite weird.

“I don’t know man, I didn’t choose. But, what’s with that question?”

“Felt like a simple, fair question.”

Craig couldn’t help but look at Ryan in a weird way.
Suddenly, his cadence just seemed off to him. Like he
had become another person. Or rather, he was finally
showing his true self and it felt a bit off to Craig.

“Ryan, what’s going on?”

“What do you mean bro?”

“You’re just acting a bit… off.”

Ryan came closer to Craig in an unnerving and telling
way. It was becoming clear that Ryan was preparing to
reveal something to him. Craig began to feel held in
some sort of suspense. Ryan then leaned towards, took a
deep breath and opened his mouth.

“Craig, I’m an earth angel.”

As you could imagine, this knocked Craig a bit out of his mind. He didn’t even have the slightest cluejust what the hell an earth angel was. Outside of
sounding kinda cool to him, it just seemed a bit foreign
and out there. And now Ryan was seeming way out
there.

“Umm…” Craig started, not knowing what the hell he
should be saying. What are you talking about?”

“You’ve never even heard of the term earth angel?”

“Nope.”

“Wow. I suppose it makes more sense why you were
picked. A nice, empty vessel.”

“Are you going to actually tell me what the fuck is going
on or what?”

Ryan smiled at Craig vibrato. It was as if he was
testing his interest level. To see if he was in fact serious.
To see if he even truly cared at all. The reactions that he
received were proof enough for him.

“Three to five times a year, earth angels ascend to your
world. We aide those individuals who we deem need
our aid the most.”

“Okay… And the criteria for this is?”

“We look at how unique the situation is. The more
unique the situation is, the less likely that there are any
references for the person to go from.”

“Makes sense.”

“I was sent down to find the person who was put into
this extraordinary position. Never thought that joining
that club would lead me to it.”

“You just joined the club for fun then?”

“Yeah. Isn’t that the point? Why did you join?”

“I don’t know. “Boredom.”

“Irony. You are anything but bored now.”

“It’s a cruel irony. But please, continue on, please.”

“My apologies. Anyway, now that I’ve found you, my
job is help you stop the impending quantum
entanglement that will take place if this girl dies.”

“Why do you mean impending quantum entanglement?”

“I see a quantum entanglement the same way that I see a
couple that’s tied to each other’s hips. They are acting in
a way that makes it impossible for them to be described
independently of each other. Because of how they are
always connected, and they have even begun to look like
one another, even when they are separated it is as though
the other person is still right there with them.”

“How does this affect the universe?”

“To put it in simple Lameman’s terms, there are several
world lines in the universe. Each world line exist and at
the same time doesn’t exist. It exists because of the
infinite possibilities that universe provides. It does not
exist because we are living in a world line of our own.
With that being said, if you bring two world lines
together at the same time, it will cause of a cosmic
meeting of fates and alter the universe just like that.”

As Ryan snapped his fingers for dramatic emphasis as
Craig allowed what he said to sink in. He just couldn’t
fathom how deep this issue was the universe and the
kind of responsibility that had been placed on him. He
just considered himself to be a normal high school
student who wanted to have a good time. Not only did
he not ask for this, he didn’t see himself worthy of such
an important call of duty.

“You okay?” Ryan asked, seeing that Craig was starting
to look out of whack.”

“Yeah man.” Craig replied as he began to shake off the
anxiety. “Wow.”

“I’m aware that this is a lot a young man to handle. But,
I’m sure with enough self-mastery, the tools that I will
provide, and taking action, you can perform honorably.”

“Right.”

“I hope that this has helped you.”

“What were you before you became an earth angel?”

“I was a spirit. I floated through all throughout the universe.”

“And then you came to do this.”

“That’s what I do.”

“Okay then, tell me. What the fuck should I do?”

“This is a journey that is going to require you to look
beyond the masquerade. The only way that you are
going to be able to find this girl is to feel her, not see her.
You are going on a date with Marcy Pryce right?”

“It’s not a date.”

“Whatever. You need to be able to truly see into her
while you are with her. That’s the only way that you are
going to be able to either rule her out and deem her as
the suicidal girl.”

“And I suppose you mean feel her on an emotional
level.”

“Yes. And this can be done in several ways.”

“Like what?”

“You’ll have fun figuring that out.”

“Right. Well, I got to go. I guess we should keep in
touch.”

“Yeah, I already got your number, so I will give you a
call later”

“How did you get my number?”

“I’m an earth angel. Divinity sees no limitations.”

Ryan began to walk away as Craig stood there, once
again not believing what was happening right here, right
now. Before he began to leave, Ryan stopped and turned
back to Craig with great intent in his eyes.

“It’s humorous.” Your mere existence could save
humanity. Yet, you leave like a less than worthy mortal.
Strange.”

Ryan walked away, leaving Craig to chew on that. As
he stared up in the sky he couldn’t help but think to
him…

“This is going to hard.”

 

Orange and Blue Chapter One: In this instant

Waking up and being awake tend to be two different
things. One must decide which direction they want to
take in life when faced at such a cross road.

It was the first day of the new school year at Abraham
Maslow High School. There was that usual kind of
anxiety that you’d get on the first day in the psyches of
the students. There was excitement for a new year, a
new chance. But, also angst over the fact that a new year
had begun in the first place. After a long summer break
the last thing that anyone wanted to do was go back to
school. But alas, that day had come.

Among the masses was a young man. Craig Marshall.
He certainly felt this shock to the system. He walked
through the halls quite aimlessly. As though he was
searching for someone to call him over and allow him to
join them.

The cause was due to getting into it with his group of
“friends” last year. He had gotten into a fist fight that
resulted in a five day suspension. But, perhaps more
importantly to the young high schooler, a loss of friends
was the negative effect. To make matters worse, his
girlfriend left him shortly thereafter.

Of course, this was not uncommon in high school to
be in a fight a lose your friends. But none of this is ever
easy. To be a young man and to suddenly lose your
group feels like a loss. A loss of identity. It was
something that everyone was dealing with on some level.
However, he was forced to have to face it head on. It
was as though a train got off the rail and was hurling
towards him.

Now, Craig was all alone. Last year, he just wandered
the halls by himself to make it to the summer. However,
this year Craig was bent on not having to suffer in that
manner.

And that was where club day came in.

At lunch on the first day of school every year there
were rows of clubs that were desperately looking for
new members to join. All kinds of clubs were there,
seeking fresh bait. The agricultural club, the mathletes,
the debate team, the anime club, the music club, so on a
so forth. The typical type of clubs that you’d expect
from a high school.

Nothing was truly catching Craig’s eyes until he saw a
sign that read TIME TRAVLER’S HELPER. It caught
his attention enough that he considered it worthy of
further investigation.

He walked towards the table where he found two young
ladies standing right out front. Amy Blanche and
Leanna Walsh, both sophomores just like him. Craig
couldn’t help but be at once drawn to them. Leanna was
short, extremely cute with her pony tail filled with silky
black hair. Her skin reflected light at a near perfect
level.

Amy had an interesting kind of energy. She was a
fiery type. But her hair was jet black and curled at the
end in way that no other girl could pull off. Her eyes
were mixed with green and blue and her body language
screamed “Don’t fuck with me.” All together she looked
like a fighter with no worthy opponent. Amy ran the
club with a strong, firm, ruling fist as she started it in her
freshman year. And Leanna as her best friend was along
for the ride.

“Time Traveler’s helper?” Craig said, still trying to
understand the reasoning behind the name.

“Yeah, can you not read proper English?” Amy asked
in a biting way, catching Craig quite of guard.

“It’s not that. But, the title is just intriguing. It makes
me want to know more.”

“Well, what info are you looking for exactly?”

“I just want to know what the club is about.”

“Isn’t it in the title?”

“There isn’t any more info?”

“Like I asked, what info are you looking for exactly?”

“Ummm….”

“Amy! Be polite!” Leanna commanded.

Amy looked at Leanna with annoyed face, as if she had
done something wrong and was about to be
punished. But she didn’t have enough power over to
properly do it so all she could do was give her a mean
look.

“She means well. Just lacks basic training. “Work in
progress.”

“It’s all good. “I like how real she is.”

“And I love how you two are speaking about me as if I
am not standing right here, specifically some douche
who doesn’t even know me.” Amy said, butting into the
slight flirting that was taking place.

Leanna then smiled at Craig and handed him one of
their business cards. It was blue and had a time machine
that looked like the one from Dr. Who on it as Craig
inspected it. He was impressed by their attempt at
professionalism.

“This looks cool.” Craig said as he stared at business
cards. He had read in a book that you need to look at a
business card for the person who handed it out to be
validated. So, he was making a real effort to do this and
didn’t notice Amy’s confused look on his face.

“We’d love for you to join our club.” Leanna said to
Craig. “You don’t seem like a creeper.”

“That’s the nicest thing that anyone’s said to me in
months.” Craig said as a somewhat poor attempt at a
joke. Though, Leanna humored him and laughed
along. “Is there anything that I need to do to
signup? “When’s the first meeting?”

“All you have to do is show up.”

“And not on some bullshit schedule of your own. ” Amy

snapped. “And please, actually show up at the scheduled
time.”

“I think I can manage that.”

“If that’s the case, then we will see you there, 3pm
sharp. You’ve got the room number on that business
card. You know what to do.”

“What should I expect?”

“Quit jumping ahead. Why don’t you show up and pay
attention once you arrive?”

“It’ll be worthwhile, I promise.” Leanna assured.

“I’ll just have to take your word for it.”

“You say that as if you have a choice in matter. “Clearly
I am withholding info.”

“And that should make it all the sweeter when I find out
just what you’re hiding.”

And just like that Craig was building his group of
friends from the ground up. And two attractive young
women no less. Craig walked away with a feeling of
accomplishment and some extra confidence. In just one
day the rest of his high school life was going to
begin. He could finally put this past ordeal behind him.

Or so he thought.

Craig lived around the school and would walk to and
from it daily. Nothing out of the ordinary there. He had
been able to avoid his old “friends” consistently since
that day had occurred. But, today wasn’t going to be just
one of those consistent days. He realized that as soon as
he got to the end of the street.

Joe Kadine and Mark Freeman were the two young
men that Craig spotted at the end of the street. At one
point, all three of these young men were extremely close
to one another. But after the events that took place,
Craig was of course ousted.

The events that took place are quite simple in all
reality. One day Joe was fucking around with Craig,
knocking a drink that he had purchased down. Craig
was not one to be pushed around and threw Joe’s own
drink in his face. This all of course sounds very
juvenile. But, that’s what high school boys do best.

The next day Joe and Mark cornered Craig in the
bathroom in a rather lame way. Craig went to take his
morning piss as usual when Joe and Mark walked
in. Joe said to Craig that what he did yesterday was a
bitch move. Craig disagreed and left the bathroom. This
was not good enough for Joe and he ended up slapping
Craig in the face. Craig then started to punch Joe and
Mark ended up sucker punching Craig resulting in Craig
having a huge bump on his head.

All the boys were suspended for five days. But Craig
was the one that lost the most. Some of the people in the
group already wanted him out. But this allowed for him
to be completely pushed out with no resistance. He no
longer had any sense of belonging anymore and
wandered the halls like a lone wolf, only lacking the
self-confidence of a lone wolf.

The pain that this caused Craig was hard to
describe. It was confusion, disbelief, anger, and sadness
all thrown in together in a blender of memories. He just
couldn’t believe that such a thing could happen. It all
seemed to harsh.

And now, the two people who caused him this
indescribable pain were right in front of him.

Craig really didn’t have an alternative route to take
home. He had to take this one on head on. As he got
closer he could tell that Joe and Mark recognized him
and were caught off guard by his presence. What was
going to happen? Part two? Reconciliation?

Yeah, right.

Craig finally stopped right in front of Joe and Mark as
the three of them stood there, completely silent. Craig
thought to himself about what needed to happen.
“Should I just walk away? “Should I flip them off?

“Yo.” Joe said in a fake friendly way.

“Hey.” Craig said.

“Haven’t seen you in a minute.” Mark joined in.

“Been busy.”

“With what?”

“I tell my plans to people that I care about.”

That crack was a moment that Craig had always wanted
to have ever since their little situation took place. Joe
and Mark were taken aback by Craig’s sudden boldness
and candidness.

“Just trying to be nice.”

“Well, your niceness wears thin.”

“Those are fighting words bro.” Joe butted in.

“You want to do something about it then, bro?” Craig
boldly said. He was ready to fight, even if it meant that
he’d get his ass kicked.

Just as tensions grew, the three of them saw Rachel
Kemp come towards them. Rachel is a part of the group
that Craig had been ousted from. She was considered to
be the most beautiful girl in their grade as well. Long,
dark hair. Nice, luscious lips. Great, curvy hips. And a
face that appeared to had been designed by Leonardo Da
Vinci and painted by Michael Angelo himself to
boot. Not to mention that she was a cheerleader. So
indeed, she had that outfit on. She was pretty much the
whole package.

“Are you fucking serious?” Rachel asked in a scolding
manner. “Again?”

“He started it!” Mark said as if he were still in
elementary school.

“I was just trying to walk by them and not get mixed up
in the filth.” Brent said, wanting to get one last dig in
there.

“You fucking…”

“Joe! That’s enough! Do you two realize just how
immature you sound. And Mark, look at you. You
shouldn’t be here right now. You should be at football
practice Mr. 0.14”

Mark stood in perhaps the largest amount of
embarrassment that Craig had witnessed. Even worse
than that one time that George Clark pantsed him in gym
class. It was as if Mark was trying to rewind back to a
time where that information about him was not out in the
open like it had become.

“Rachel!”

“Sorry, it’s the truth. Now, you should go home and
study so that maybe you can at least play baseball in the
spring huh? And Joe, why don’t you help your little
buddy catch up, huh?”

Mark and Joe walked away with their heads held as low
as Craig had ever seen them. Rachel was smiling at the
fact that she was able to put those two in their place
without much effort. Craig glanced at her in disbelief as
Rachel had just so happened to be turning her glance
towards him as well.

“Those fools.” Rachel said like she just had a Clint
Eastwood moment.

“It’s whatever.”

“No, not whatever. They think that they are so clever
and funny. “They are just fucking idiots who are not
going to amount to anything after we get out of
here. Most of the people that I hang out with are going
to be shit after graduation.”

You could feel that at least in some small way that
Rachel was in fact directing those words to
herself. Craig could feel some of the self-hatred that was
harboring vibrate off of her otherwise beautiful self. It
allowed him to further connect with her though as she
was reflecting his own self-hatred.

“I know it’s been a while, but I remembered you being
pretty damn good at science.” Craig said to comfort
her. “So, you got skills at least. I’m sure that you will
find a way.”

“That’s right, you were always pretty sweet. Aloof. But,
sweet. “I wish that we didn’t lose touch over something
as trivial as all of that bullshit.”

“You’re telling me. I went the rest of the year without
any friends.”

“Well, you don’t have to now.”

Rachel walked up to Craig and began to write her
number on Craig’s arm, completely surprising him. She
even put a little heart at the end of it. Craig did his best
not to be seen swooning.

“That’s my new number. Give me a call when you have
a good idea of what we could do together. I might say
yes.”

And with that Rachel walked away. For a girl that was
14 going on 15, she was awfully advanced at the art of
making a guy want her i.e. the art of seduction. Her
looks already took care of a good percentage of that. But
her way with words sent her to another level setting up a
criteria that most high school girls couldn’t meet.

Craig thought over the possibilities as he finally
reached his home. He lived with his mom, dad, and
three sisters. But he really didn’t care for them. And
quite frankly, they didn’t really care for him. It’s not that
he didn’t love them and that they didn’t love him. There
was some kind of love to be found. Although, it
certainly was not openly expressed. Craig said hi to
mom and went straight to his room. For
homework? Nope. Video game time.

Video games brought Craig a lot of joy of course. But
mostly importantly, it allowed for him to have a proper
escape from an existence that he found to be shitty. He
could race a NASCAR car, throw a football as Russell
Wilson, or just shoot down the enemy with ease using an
AK-47. Here, he didn’t have think about just how shitty
his life was. Or just how shitty it was going to become
in the future.

That was quickly changing though. Craig began to
think about Amy and Leanna. How nice they were to
him. The hope that they represented. He could finally
start to make some new friends. And along with Rachel
he perhaps now had three romantic interests. Those
prospects were what excited him the most as he kicked
Zombie ass. It was as if the light that made Craig shine
that was once extinguished was reignited and began to
slowly shine it’s bright light.

The next day, Craig zipped through all of his
classes. He just wanted to get to that club. He couldn’t
stop thinking about it. It allowed him to be able to make
it through the day without falling asleep on his desk once
in class or thinking about how much things just
sucked. Something that he was more than accustomed to
at this point. He even scarfed down his lunch at a faster
rate than normal.

It was 2:55pm and Craig practically ran to the club
room. How many people would be there? Would most
of them be girls? Are they giving food? These were
questions that were going through Craig’s head as he
opened the door to find that it was just Leanna sitting
there with a nice smile on her face.

“Hey!” Leanna said in a somewhat overly friendly
way. The club room had that empty restaurant feel to it. That was to be sure.

“Hey”. Craig replied, not having much if any
confidence in what was in front of him at all.

“Amy is just running a little late. But, no worries! We
can talk!”

“Sounds like a good time.” Craig said, wishing that he
had said something cooler.

“So, I don’t think that I saw you here last year. Who do
you hang out with?”

“Well, I had a group of friends. “But, there was a fight
and things kind of just went away after that.”

“Wait, were you that dude that was fighting those two
guys last year at the end of the second floor?”

“Yup.”

“Holy shit dude. “I remember that so well. “You were crying.”

“I was NOT crying.”

“It sure looked that way to me.”

“It was just a bit of an adrenaline filled deal.”

“I bet. So, you’ve just been a lone wolf ever since then?”

“You can say that.”

“Do you ever get lonely?”

“No, not really.”

“Oh.”

“You sound like you’re disappointed with my
answer. Do you want me to get lonely?”

“No, not at all. I was just wondering what it must be like
to have that happen.”

“It has its issues. But, I got video games, so it isn’t too
bad. And besides, nothing lasts forever.”

“True.”

“How long have you known Amy?”

“Too long.” Leanna said half-jokingly. Emphasis on the
half.

“What do you mean by that?”

“We’ve been friends for a long time. So, we’ve been through a lot together.”

“Care to share?”

“I wouldn’t want to show all my cards right away, now would I?”

“Good hand.”

Craig and Leanna stare into each other’s eyes and smile for a moment. The connection between
the two is so clear. And innocent as well. Leanna feels like a girl that had been plucked from
Craig’s dreams. His slight manic pixie dream girl come to life.

Just as Craig wanders into day dream world, Amy storms through the door in a surprisingly
thunderous way. For a pretty small girl in frame, Amy carried a lot of vibrato. Enough to break
Craig out of the chambers of his mind to what was happening right before his eyes.

“Apologies for being late.” Amy says as she inspects the room and only sees Craig and
Leanna. An expression of disappointment comes across her face that says more than necessary.
“I think that this might be everyone Amy.” Leanna said in a comforting way, going for letting
Amy down easy.

“Really?” Craig blurted out without any regard.

“It’s not that bad.” Leanna assured. “Three’s company!” Amy could not help but look at Leanna
as if she was crazy and she wanted to throw her out of the window for it.

“We can just begin, okay?” Amy said in a way that showed her ego bruises.

As Amy approached the front of the club room to proceed with the day’s activities, two students
suddenly busted into the room. Both were 15 years old, one young man, another was a young
lady. Ryan Wood and Claire Reese were the two students in question. Ryan looked straight
from the old television show the O.C. Claire had lush read her and innocent blue eyes. Her
figure was by far the most physically mature in the room.

“Sorry!” Claire shouted out. “Are we interrupting something?”

“Why are you shouting?” Ryan asked.

“I’m just filled up with a lot of energy right now Ryan, okay?” Claire responded in an annoyed
manner. Everyone in the room was immediately fixated on these two now.

“So, is this the Time Traveler’s helper club? “Or whatever title it was.”

“Yes!” Amy said, disregarding the diss. Seeing that there were now two people who were
interested in joining the club soothed her ever so fragile ego just a little bit.

“Cool!” Ryan let out. “I normally have nothing but cynicism regarding clubs. “Like, I have no
school spirit. “But the name was so ridiculous that I had to come and see this shit for myself.”

“Nevertheless, glad that you two are here! “Now, if you two could just so kindly take a seat, we
can officially begin.”

Craig found it interesting just how nice Amy was being
to Ryan and Claire. It could be due to the fact that
hardly anyone showed up. Maybe Amy was beginning
to realize the positives of having a pleasing
personality. She really began to lay on think and nearly
became a totally different person.

“I think that I’m just going to jump right into it. Time
Traveler’s Helper. I know the newbies in the room may
be thinking “just what the hell is the purpose of all of
this?” Well, we are here to reach higher levels of depth
within ourselves. We are here to interact with our future
selves.”

Just like that, Craig got that “what the fuck?” look on
his. In reality, that was exactly what he was
thinking. He did not expect Amy to start off by saying
something so outlandish.

“What do you mean by “interacting with our future
selves?” “

“It’s said in the phrase. I thought that I was pretty clear.”

“Okay… How is that going to work?”

“Don’t be so rigid Craig. Your future self is in fact
ALWAYS attempting communication with you.”

“Actual verbal communication? Like, it’s actually trying
to have a conversation with me?”

“Precisely.”

“Right…”

“Look, it’s simple. Your future self is communicating to
you through subtle ways. Deja Vu, weird synchronicity,
chance encounters, number repeating themselves, cold
chills when you enter a room.”

“OOOHH!” Claire blurted out. “I had a cold chill when
I came in! Does that mean that my future self was
talking to me?”

“Maybe. But the A.C is also on. Anyway, your future
self is always looking for ways to pierce through to your
heart. But vibrationally speaking, most people are not
up to the task of letting the power messages that their
future self holds in.

“And why is that?” Craig asked, butting back into the
original course of the conversation.

“Most, if not all people have their conscious wants and
their subconscious wants. When these two are aligned,
it’s actually quite beautiful. However, most people
usually have clashing desires and that is where the
problem is. Because of all of this, our messages end up
being lost in translation. And we aren’t able to possess
the power that our future selves provide.”

All Craig could do is stare at Amy. “What the hell is
this bitch talking about?” Craig asked himself. He
really couldn’t understand how things had taken a turn to
the weird. He just wanted to be in a normal group of
friends with normal cute girls. He didn’t believe that he
was asking for much, if anything at all.

Craig began to look around to see what the others
thought of this. He looked at Leanna and saw a big
smiling face. Clearly, she was hip to what was
happening and was into it. Craig then turned over to
Ryan and Claire to see what was good with them. To his
surprised, Ryan and Claire were quite intrigued with
what Amy was saying. Their eyes were completely
glued to her as if she was the only person that was alive.

“How does this work?” Claire asked as Craig gave
himself a rather powerful face palm.

“It’s actually not that complex.” Amy began to
explain. “We are going to be communicating to
our future selves through text. The thing is though, it
will be up to us if we are going to be receiving the text or
not.”

“Are you talking about the vibrational stuff?” Ryan
asked.

“Yes. You must be on the right frequency or else this
will be all for not.”

The first meeting with on a little longer with some
mundane questions. At its conclusion there was
however, an excitement in the air. Ryan and Claire in
particular were extremely excited about the possibility of
communicating with their future selves. It was as if they
had found some sort of missing link of joy.

“To finish up, here’s how you can start the process of
communicating with your future self. Visualization. Lay
down next to your phone and visualize talking to the
person that you want to become in ten years. You will
then be laying the much-needed ground work to get this
started.”

Everyone left in excitement over what could come out
of this. Leanna has this self-assured look on her
face. Ryan can’t hide the big smile that’s filled with
childhood wonderment. He had always dreamed over
time travel. Claire was just over joyed and couldn’t stop
giggling. Amy was simply pleased with herself. The
thought “job well done” crossed her mind. As for
Craig? Nothing but skepticism flowed through his
veins. As Amy was beginning to leave, Craig had to
stop her to privately question her about all this. To see
what was truly behind the veil.

“We need to talk.” Craig said to Amy in a dominant
way. This caught her off guard and got her slightly
attracted to Craig’s masculine action.

“Okay, what is it?” Amy replied in a somewhat sexually
suggestive manner. Craig might had played along, but
he was genuinely concerned about what was taking
place.

“Is any of this shit actually true? Or are you just taking
us all for a ride? What are you really trying to do? And
be honest.”

“What do you mean by that?”

“None of this makes a lick of sense. I mean, texts from
our future selves? Where the fuck did you get that
from? A tarot card reading?”

“Of course it doesn’t make any sense to you. Look at
you, you’re coming from such a low place of
judgment. You should be embracing this. You should
be embracing the unknown.”

“Then tell me, where did this come from? What drove
you into this line of work? Why is this your passion?”

Amy looked Craig in the eyes in an ultra-serious
manner, shaking Craig for a second. Did he trigger
something? Was she just about to deliver the ultimate
bitch slap?

“Last year I got a text from my future self about Debra
Bates. It said that she was going to die in a car crash. At
first, I was honestly worse than you. I couldn’t believe
such nonsense. I’m a lady of science ya know? So, I
ignored it and ran away from it. But, the more that I ran
away from it, the more death flags around Debra that I
noticed. It became more and more obvious to me that
there was something to these texts. Then, on the day that
she was supposed to die, I was walking and saw her in a
car. I just had this gut feeling that was going happen
right then and there. I had to test it out. If I was right, I
saved a life. So, I walked up to the driver of the car and
started talking to them to distract them. Just as that
happened, a track trailer hit another car, that car spun
and got creamed. If Debra’s driver had kept on going,
they could have gotten crushed. And just like that,
Debra’s life was saved.”

Craig takes everything that Amy says in with great
compassion. He truly is overwhelmed that such a thing
can happen. Texting your future self? Who would have
been able to pontificate that this would possible?

“But, why?”

“Sometimes fate calls your name I guess?”

“I just don’t know…”

“Just do the visualization tonight. You’ll get something,
I know you will. Just put that cell phone next to you and
see who you want to be in the next five years. Just
breathe and believe. That’s the key. It’s not that
believing is seeing. It’s that breathing is seeing.”

And with that, Amy left as Craig thought s over what
Amy’s told him. Is this all true? Is any of this even
worth finding out? Who is this girl? As he thought
about her he thought about the cuteness of her smile
when she was talking about this in front of the club. Her
passion on this rang true. That was clear as day.
Could it be that it was worth giving a shot? On his home
to further think about all of this, Craig heard a familiar
voice call his name out.

“Craig!” That familiar bubbly voice was Rachel. A
voice that turned just about any boy going through
puberty’s head. But, Craig’s head turned like an Owl’s
once he heard her call him name. She was once again
wearing her cheerleader outfit, so Craig had to work
double hard to hold his excitement down.

“Oh, hey!”

“I didn’t know that you were a part of a club. Which one
do you go to?”

“Ugh. You’re gonna laugh at me if I say.”

“Come on now, why would I do that? Have I ever just
straight up laughed at you?”

“Well, there’s a first time for everything.”

“Just tell me already!”

“Okay… It’s the Time Traveler’s Helper club, okay?”

Rachel stared at Craig, smiling, looking for the signs
that he was joking. When she inspected his face and saw
nothing but sincerity, she realized that he did in fact join
the Time Traveler’s Helper club. She then began to walk
as he thought what he said over. Really hoping that he
didn’t reveal himself too much.

“Oh. “That is quite interesting.”

“You think that I’m weird for joining it huh?”

“No, no, no. Not at all. Just unexpected. Hell, it’s unexpected that you’d join any club at all.”

“Yeah, I know what you mean. But I had little options
after last year. I kinda just needed to get something
going.”

“I would have pegged you for football or something.”

“Getting a concussion before my 18th birthday? Nah,
I’m good.”

“I suppose that is as good of a reason if any to stay
away.”

“Good enough for me.”

Craig and Rachel continued to walk down the street,
talking and flirting. Inside, Craig was so happy that
Rachel still wanted to continue some kind of relationship
with him. He had thought that everyone from that group
wanted nothing to do with him. But Rachel? She
showed a true keen interest in him that made him feel as
though he was worth something.

“Do you still take all the green M&Ms out? Craig asked
in a somewhat biting way.

“Yeah, so what?”

“Just checking. Glad to hear that the quirk still exist.”

“Oh?” And do you think that you are quirkless mister?”

“Hmmm. Not sure. I’m sure that I have a few. They are
just well hidden.”

“How about how when we’d go to subway you’d get
ALL the toppings.”

“How is that a quirk?”

“Who the hell gets all the toppings at Subway.”

“I guess you’re looking at him.”

Rachel giggled as they arrived at her street. She looked
Craig right in the eyes and felt a great feeling of what
seemed to be love. Rachel didn’t know what it was, but
she was just into Craig. Maybe it was his innocence
despite all that’s happened to him. But, he was just
different than any other guy that she’s met.

“This is it.”

“Always fun.”

“Look, the first football game of the year is this
Friday. You should come.”

“I don’t know. I mean, I’ve got some serious NASCAR
races to play online planned for Friday night. And as
you could imagine, that takes up quite a bit of time.”

“Just come, there’s going to be a party after at Stacey
Welch’s house. You can come with me.”

Those were the magic words. Going to a party with
Rachel? Nuff said.

“Fuck it. I’ll come.”

“Perfect! I got to go. But, I can’t wait!”

Rachel hugged Craig right before she began walking
towards her home. Craig just stood there for a moment
as he watched her hair sway from one side to another
and her ass sway in the opposite direction. Rachel truly
was a beauty to behold. And Craig couldn’t believe that
the stars had aligned for him to go out with Rachel. That
his luck had finally turned around.

Later the night, Craig found himself in bed with a
decision that needed to be made. Should he actually try
the visualization? What was the point of it? Was Amy
just some crazy bitch that he had gotten mixed up
with? How he did feel about Amy? More importantly,
how did he feel about Leanna?

Eventually Craig thought to himself that if he to look
crazy, that looking crazy in the comfort of his own
bedroom wouldn’t be all too bad. So, he decided to just
go ahead and give it a shot. What was the worst that
could happen?

Craig slowly closed his eyes and begins to create an
image of who he wants to be in ten years. He sees
himself a taller, smugger looking, more muscular,
wearing an Armani suit James Bond style, with a Rolex
watch. When older Craig spoke, his voice had become
quite deep as well. To Craig all of this was modest of
course. If you are you going to dream, dream big
right? Craig had conjured up an image of himself was as
a true badass.

Craig sunk further and further into his visualization,
seeing himself with kinds of beautiful women, in sports
cars, ocean side mansions. But then, suddenly
everything went quiet a dark. This freaked Craig out
because it wasn’t of his own doing. It all of a sudden just
happened. Then a voice came through.

“Craig.” Future Craig said.

“What the fuck was that all about?” Craig asked.

“Just had to shut down a few things in order to have a
proper conversation.”

“The hell do you want to talk?”

“We can discuss what happened last year”

Craig suddenly stopped in his tracks. He was completely
caught off guard by this question.

“What do you mean?” Craig asked, trying to hide how
uncomfortable he was with the question.

“You understand precisely what I mean.” Older Craig
replied, not coddling Craig for a second. That
fight? What was that all about? Why did it happen?”

“I don’t know.”

“Yeah you do. Did you do something to aggravate
them? “Or are you just that unlikeable?”

“Fuck you.”

“And look at you now. Basically friendless. That poor
girl Rachel is just taking pity on you. Leanna and Amy
are just using you. You are just a pawn. And the sad
thing is that you think that you are in the catbird’s
seat. Silly delusions”

“SHUT THE FUCK UP!”

“You are floundering. Don’t you think that it’s time to

stop? Why are you not willing to change?”

“I’m fucking doing my best!”

And just like that, Craig ends the visualization in a cold
sweat. Craig looks like he has been hit by an iron and
then saw a ghost. He picked up his cell phone and stares
at it as if he will get a text by doing just that. After a few
moments, he dropped the cell phone and stared out of his
window, wondering just what the hell he had just went
through. Wondering if he truly had no control over what
just happened. Or if he was the puppet master and he is
just going crazy. He digested all of this as he fell asleep,
trying to forget all of this.

The next day in Mr. Phelps’ Geometry class, Craig
could hardly keep his eyes open. It wasn’t that he was
bored. He was hardly able to sleep last night. His mind
just couldn’t help but race on all through the night. He
couldn’t let go of that shaking feeling that someway,
somehow, his world had changed.

As Craig decided to try and jot down some notes he
suddenly received a text. Not connecting it to the
conversation that he had with his future self last night,
Craig hid himself away from Mr. Phelps to check out
what the text had to say. His pupils began to dilate as
soon as he reads what’s on his cell phone screen.

“Is this 15-year-old Craig Marshall?”

Taken aback by the weird question, Craig decided to go
ahead and engage in this text conversation. Still not
connecting two and two together for whatever reason.

“Yes.” Craig replied. “And just who the hell are you?”

“It’s you in ten years. “We can now communicate
through text like you clearly were looking for.”

Craig ceased breathing for a few seconds after reading
that text. The bewilderment that he got from this text
was second to none. He had thought that Amy was just a
quirky cute girl. But now, he was texting his twenty
five-year-old self.

“Yo Craig.” Said Nathan Chetz, a classmate of
Craig’s. “Are you okay man? It looks like you just saw
the anti-Christ.”

“Huh? Oh. I’m fine bro. Thanks.”

Craig composed himself a bit and looked at the text one
more time. Could this be the real deal? Was it a
prank? After signing up for the club he left his cell
phone number. Amy and Leanna didn’t give him theirs
just yet. Perhaps it was just a prank. Either way, he
didn’t to test out the validity of this.

“How do I know that you truly my future self?”

“I know that you think Mari Kallen is hot, but you are afraid of what the other guys will say to you if you were to ask her out. She clearly has hotter friends. But, you lack the self confidence to ask any of them out. Or self-esteem. “Could be both”

Craig in that instant becomes a believer. He can’t help
but stare at his cell phone screen. Right in the middle of
class he was going through a scientific phenomenon.
While everyone was failing regarding solving a
rudimentary geometry equation, Craig was speaking to
someone in a different world line.

“You have now been able to unlock your third
eye.” Twenty five-year-old Craig explains. “You are
now filled with the five dimensions of consciousness.”

“What do you mean by five dimensions of
consciousness?”

“There are five dimensions in this universe. Most beings
do not have connection to them. With that said
connection conversations like this and any kind of
bending of space and time is possible.”

“What did I do to trigger it?”

“You transcended your body when you connected with
me.”

“Are you saying that I astral projected?”

“Not exactly, but in a way. You were about to exist
outside of your physical form for the first time.”

“So, what does this all add up to?

“You now have a purpose that you have to fulfill. It is
going to be your sole goal for the next few months. “And
failure to do so will cause catastrophic changes to the
universe as you know it, and to your future of course.”

Craig tried desperately to not stop his heart as he read
his future self’s last text. How did he go from just a
normal guy to now having the fate of the universe in his
hands? Why was this happening to him? And why did
he not have a choice in the matter? These were all
questions that were spinning around in his head.

“What do I have to do?” Craig texted back as he
anxiously waited for a response.

“There is a female student in your grade that is going to
commit suicide.” Craig’s future self replied as Craig’s
jaw practically dropped to the ground. ” You need to
find her and stop her. “Her death will cause major
ripple effects in your world line.”

Craig stares at the text and then picks his head up as he
looks around the classroom, looking at just about each
girl. “Who the fuck could it be?” He thought to
himself. And he had no idea where to begin.

“Who is this girl?” Craig asked with great urgency.

“Unfortunately, this is information that I do not
have. All that’s been given to me has already
been said.”

“Well, it’s not that helpful to be perfectly honest.”

“You will have to put on your detective hat and locate
this girl. You have no choice. If you don’t the universe
as it is now will be over. This conversation is
over. Until next time.”

And just like that, their conversation was over, leaving
Craig feeling the emptiest of emptiness. Just what the
hell was he supposed to do? Suck in an impossible
situation, especially for a 15 year old young man.

He joined this club to get some friends and maybe date
some cute girls. Now he has to save someone’s life and
potentially save the Universe.

Go Figure huh?

 

 

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