I walk across the grounds with a frown on my face. It's not been the best of days...and my minds on many a things.
And so it's in this distracted mindframe that I almost trip up over the lad sitting on the steps, and drop the tennis ball which i'd been turning slowly in my hand out of habit, even though it had been practically destroyed and made virtually unbounceable by Raine.
I let out a sigh and bend to retrieve it with a mumbled apology.
"Ey..". I mumble when I feel him tripping over me, chuckling up at the figure. Normally I would have snapped, and even tried to start a fight, but instead I just lay there a moment, taking another drag off of my cigarette.
"Head in th'clouds makes it kinda' 'ard t'watch yer feet, kid. ". I say as I sit up a bit on one hand, eyeing this one. Hey. A looker, at least. . . and I'm not at all ashamed to give him a once over.
"Mmmm and so much harder with your head up your arse."
I close my eyes and take a second to breathe.
"Sorry." I open my eyes to his " I didn't mean that- I'm just- PISSED OFF is all."
I shrug and study the ball having retrieved it, noting the accent that Ryan had warned me off and yet I don't see it quite how he did i must say.
Not for the first time.
"Your names Colin Farrell right?" I shrug " Your reputation proceeds you."
I shrug my shoulders a little and offer him a smile, despite the tensing in my shoulders at him snipping back at me.
" Yah, yah. . . Colin Farrell. Let me guess. Irish brute. Violent. Total arse-face. ". I wink at the boy and sit up, flicking my cigarette off and shifting my shirt down over my stomach a bit. Hey, let em' hate me. I don't mind.
"Yeah, that sounds 'bout right. . . Pleasure t'meet ya, brown eyes. ".
"You could just do the everyday thing of asking my name you know?" I say smiling at him and crossing my arms.
"Unless your weighing up my assets, in which case you won't be able to do that sitting on a step..."
Not that he'll be doing it at all.
"My names Orlando. Like the city only Better." I say holding out a hand for him to shake if he feels so inclined.
Such a dick. Colin the brute. Colin the irish asshole.
Not that I really care. I've always delt with those names. Sure, I snap at people. Sure, I've busted my fair share of knuckles on other people's faces. . . but you know what? Harmless as a kitten, if approached correctly. I take his hand as I stand up to my feet, not shaking it but rather bringin' it to my lips, to press a chaste kiss to his knuckles then let go, giving an impish little shrug. The smile on my face is one that one would imagine a fox making.
"Ah, but do YOU have Disneyworld n'MGM studios n'rollerocasters? Cause. . .well. American's eat that shite up. ". I laugh at him and tuck me hands in me pockets, looking toward the door, then back at him. Can't run up on a predator. You have to approach them slowly. . . . that's sort of how it is, handling a guy like me.
I can't admit im not taken aback by the kiss on my hand but i quickly compose myself to say:
"Well you're not american." I cock my head " And neither am I. Though it explains why i have NO FRIENDS AROUND THIS PLACE." i say shouting the rest of the sentence out to the rest of the school.
"Let'm go to freaking Disneyland, its not like I care anyway..."
"Huh. Y'think that's why? . . . See, mine's just cause everyone 'round here assumes 'm just a useless brute. Doesn't bug me none. They just aren't used t'a full blood irishmen' bein' round. . . Give em' time. 'm sure you got lots of friends. ".
Maybe I'm just being nice because I'm sober. Who knows, really, but I eye the boy a moment. " Y'want a cigarette, or something? Dunno. Tryin' t'offer some comfort. I've been so fuckin' homesick at this place. . . . Gott say, America's nice and all. . . but I miss Dublin.".
"I shouldnt even BE here." i mumble and frown " I hate this place. I hate being here... I can't even turn to my parents when everyone abandons me- Which they ALL DO by the way."
I clench my jaw and take a deep breath in.
"I wanna go home."
"Yeah yeah. . . I do too. ". I listen to him rant and lift a hand to pat him on the back. " . . . my parents are th'fuckers who sent me over here, t'be rid of me. So. . . I don't got anyone t'turn to either, and my boyfriend I had here up and left without a note or a call. We should start a club, y'know. ".
I wink at him and move around the front of him. " C'mon. Ain't all that bad. . . ". I mumble under my breath with a little smile, very gently nudging my fingers against his jaw, at his cheeks, to try and make him smile.
"C'mon, smile. Yer gettin' yer first lesson in bein' irish. When shit gets you down, smile about it. Fuck it! Yer alive, right? That's a good thing...".
What the fuck am I being so nice for? . . . Raine should pet me to sleep more often. I'm less inclined to bust people in the face.
I close my eyes a moment leaning into the touch until realise what I'm doing and turn my head away sharpish.School Slut.....It just has so much more meaning in times like this. And I just can't do it today...Not in anyway, not even in the little ways my body language craves to be touched. I can't do it...and a dark cloud falls over me. The same little rain cloud thats been following me around all day.
"I don't want to be Irish..." I whisper quietly and my eyes trail back up to his saying a little louder " I don't WANT to be American....I'm British. ENGLISH.Whats everyone trying to change me for?"
A tear runs down my cheek- I don't know whats got into me today, but in the back of my mind a voice is growling that hes standing here complaining to me about being a downer on life, and how amazing it is, when he was slitting his wrists just the other day...
"I LIKE being me! Even if no one else likes me for it. So I'm a slut, Im this , I'm that, I don't care! Infact! Why don't I just get " Insert here" tattoed across my ass then no ones in any doubt are they?"
I wasn't complaining about him being a downer at all. . . and yeah, I cut myself. Got no room to talk, but. . . it won't happen again. I made a promise.
I just stare at him for a moment, my thick brows knitting together in concern as I shift away alittle. "I'm sorry. . . was just tryin' to cheer you up, is all. I doubt yer a slut. Tattoos hurt a lot, by the way. Wouldn't recommend them. Especially one on yer arse. . . ".
I try joking and offer a very weak smile, scratching at the back of my neck. "Listen, mate. . . eh. Sorry. I wasn't tryin' to change nothin'. Barely even know ya. . .and I never judge people. ".
"Well that makes two of us.....But the rest of the world tends not to be so forgiving."
I drop down to sit on the step, glaring at the ground and bring up the tennis ball to look at the little face, with the little crop of hair Raine had drawn on it and i sniff.
"You were right...He does look better with hair..." I whisper to an imaginary Raine and hear Colin make a confused noise and just shake my head as if to signal that he disregard the comment as a mere musing.
For a moment I can only watch Orlando, and make a sideways sort of smile. Poor thing. Well, at least we're sort of similar. With our fucked up perceptions and how we both miss home. My hand drops to his shoulder, and I offer him a little squeeze, eyeing the tennis ball.
" . . . That's one sexy tennis ball, y'got. ". I tease lightly, just trying to cheer the poor thing up.
"Anythin' I can do at all? . . . y'seem to be in a more shitty mood than I've been in. . . didn't think that were possible. ".
One last try at being sweet.
"Rebuild my life? Change history? Save my soul?" I look up at him "Can you make him care about me Colin?" and thats the first time I've brought Jared up in mind for...oh over an hour now?- I need to get away from Winston, I need my mum and sister, I need my Dog and MY bed.... "I didn't think so.....I can't be helped. I'm helpless and i can't be helped. Just..Just leave me alone."
It sounds so bitter. And so unlike me. Ive been complaining of lonliness for such a long while and the minute someones around willing to talk to someone like me, and be kind and unimposing, I just want to be left to my misery.
I guess I'm not in the mood to be cheered. I guess theres no point making friends when Im so sure Im not going to last it out here.
" Can't do that. ", I reply with an even weaker smile and a shrug. " . . . M'boyfriend left without a trace, recently. Ex, rather. . . didn't think I was gonna get over it, either. No note, no nothin'. I was so fuckin' heart broken. I figured, god, I'm already lonely enough out here without bein' broken up with, too. . . . but.. y'know. Stuff happens. ". I give a flighty little smile, thinking about Raine, and. . .oh god, his bed, and his lips. Can't wait until tonight, either.
"Then y'meet someone that changes all that. ". Not that I'm in love. Nope. . . but. Still, I'm happy again. Even this little brown-eyed kid seems to cheer me a bit. I know I'm not alone. . . . I shrug and pet his hair with one hand as I move up the steps. "It's gonna be okay. Yer guy'll shape up. And yer not a slut, just cause y'like to have a spot of fun. We all do. We're human, after all. . ..".
"I'll leave ya alone. I know my company ain't worth shit. That's what makes me a brute, and everyone else worth their weight in gold. . . . don't hang 'round brutes, Orlando. We're bad news. . . but if y'change yer mind. Come have a drink with me or somethin'. I know I'm nothin' worth anythin', but. . . . I gotta lot of alcohol, and a lot of time, and an open ear for weary vagrants like ourselves. ".
Yep. Up the steps, and inside I go.
Just a brute.