Friday, 3 January 2020

Chapter Nine : 25 With 18

Ridhima was tried like no other when waking up in the morning for school. She hadn't had more than an hour of sleep last night. She had fallen asleep around four just thinking about Armaan and woke up at five for her long walk to school.
Slowly and tiredly Ridhima walked towards school. Her mind kept on racing with that kiss in mind. Every second she would think of him, every time she would try to think of another subject her thoughts would race back to him. He was her teacher, seven years older. Yes a dashing man but still more experienced in every way then her. He knew what he wanted and she hadn't the slightest clue.
Ridhima was half way to school when she heard a rusty old pickup truck honk at her. She turned to see Mark waving at her to get in his truck. She pulled open the dented truck with peeled off red paint and got in.

"Hey Mark" Ridhima said as she took of her backpack to set beside her. She did not realize how heavy her backpack really was until she let the extra weight off.
"Hey Ridhima, you know I had a really weird dream last night, you wanna hear it?" Mark said in his regular joy full tone. Sometimes Ridhima wondered how the boy could be so loaded with work and still be so happy. He had a girlfriend, football team, top of the class, and managed to go to parties every other weekend.
"Sure" Ridhima said uninterested in Mark's dreams but just said it to have him talk and her not pay attention.
"Well last night I had a dream that I was sneaking out of my girl friend, Stacey's house, you know the one just a few blocks away from Mr. Khanna's place…" As soon as Mark said Khanna, it got Ridhima listening. "…Well I was dreaming that I was seeking out of Stacey's house after foolin around and I saw you running out of Mr. Khanna's house at one forty five in the morning with tears in your eyes. Now you know how dreams don't come true…" Ridhima never in her life felt so out of place with Mark as she did at that moment. "…but maybe you could tell me what that you in my dream's might have been feeling running out of Khanna's house?" Mark asked Ridhima.
It wasn't a dream and Mark knew it, Ridhima knew it. She could have just said nothing and have Mark as Armaan, but she needed someone to talk to. Mark was trust worthy, Ridhima trusted him the most out of anyone in school as it was. It wasn't like she could talk to her aunt about this any way.
"Maybe, me in your dreams was in tears, running out of the Khanna house because she was to afraid to sleep with a teacher." Ridhima said looking out the widow up at the gray sky. No rain had fallen. As soon as Ridhima had completed her sentence she felt the car come to a sudden halt with a jolt.
Mark hit the car breaks as hard as he could just a few feet from the school parking lot yelling "WHAT!" he looked at Ridhima surprised to the bone. "That son of a…" Mark didn't complete the sentence he just parked his car quickly and swiftly not giving Ridhima a chance to explain. Mark was a Christian boy who did not cuss but he was on the edge of doing so. He power walked in the most war like manner strait to art room 108 with Ridhima trying to follow behind his large steps.
"Mark wait…" Ridhima tried to say but her voice was deaf to his ears. He walked straight in the classroom. Armaan was alone in the room writing on the board when Mark grabbed a fist full of Armaan's shirt from his back. Turned Armaan around and punched him hard in the face.
 It was a good thing no one was in or near the class room except for Armaan, Ridhima, and Mark. "What the…" Armaan couldn't say more as he was kicked hard on the legs which caused him to fall on the ground on his right side crushing his whole right arm. It took a few seconds to realize that Mark was hitting him, and Ridhima was trying to stop an ill cause. Armaan thought the hitting and kicking was over but he then felt Mark hit him in the stomach at least three times before he heard Mark say "Stay away from her! You sick perve!" Mark was about to hit Armaan again but contorled his anger in a little and stopped.
"Mark!" Ridhima said astounded. She then ran over to help Armaan up from the floor.
The pain was so striking that he could cry. It wasn't like Armaan had never been beat up before, but he had never been beat up as badly as he had today.
"Why the hell are you helping him" Mark said in disgust, just ready to strike Armaan again.
"You won't understand" Ridhima said touching Armaan's cheek lightly as blood drissled down from the side. Armaans stomach was what hurt the most as he was sure he was internally bleeding beneath his shirt.
"You told him!" Armaan ask Ridhima truly surprised.
"He knew already" Ridhima said grabbing a papper towal and wetting it at the Art sink to wipe away the Blood on Armaan's face. He really did look brused up and worn down.
"Oh god, you actaully like him." Mark said wide eyes, all of a sudden he started to feel faint at the idea of Ridhima actually liking Armaan! What made it wose was knowing that Armaan liked her back.
"So does that mean yawl two are together…" Mark asked unsure what actually was going on between Armaan and Ridhima, if it was actaully it or just something else.
"No!..." Ridiam blurted out right away "…its nothing like that, its just different okay."
"Different how?" Mark asked but not to Ridhima, instead he looked at Armaan who was holding his stomach in pain.
"different in which we are closer then friends, but not close enough to be considerd together. God did you have to kick me so hard in the gut!" Armaan blurted out in pain he really wanted to just go home and lie in bed, and yet the day hadn't even started yet.
"but your…" Mark never got to finish his sentence because right then Justin walked in right when the bell rang.
"Sup guys" As Justin was moving towards his table he noticed Armaan's face. "Whow, what happened to your face?" Justin said as he squinted his eyes unsure if what he saw was really what he saw.
"I got beat up by an eighteen year old, that's what happened" Armaan said bending over as he slowly walked by himself to his desk. Ridhima and Mark just stayed standing until Armaan reached his desk and then they themselves took their seat.
"I don't get it?" Justin said but was even more surprised when Ridhima and Mark both at the same time said "Shut up Justin"
"shish I was just asking." He said but ignoring Ridhima and Mark's comment he did not take the idea any further and did not question Armaan any more either.
"how about yawl have a free day today, do whatever yawl want. I just need to…" Armaan winced in pain, as he held his stomach to sit up straight in his chair "…just don't bother me please."
"Can we text?" Justin asked hoping the answer would be yes.
"yeah whatever" Armaan said closing his eyes to relax.
As soon as Armaan had his eyes closed Ridhima saw Mark pass her a note. She took it from his hand and opened the folded up piece of paper.
MARK-He's so old.
  RIDHIMA-there's something about him, I just can't explain.
There really was something about Armaan that Ridhima liked. She knew she did not love him, she did not know him well enough to love him. But still there was something about him that made her know that she could fall in love with him. That in the time coming she would fall in love with him.
MARK- is he worth the risk?
MARK- Do you love him?
RIDHIMA- not yet
MARK- Will you love him?
MARK- does he love you?
RIDHIMA- I don't know
MARK- Just don't do anything stupid
RIDHIMA- I won't
And that was the end of that conversation. Mark wasn't going to tell anyone but he knew that if Ridhima got hurt he would feel the guiltiest for not telling anyone. He worried for her like everyone else in town would. No one knew Armaan that well, he was like a shadow appearing in a sunny world. Everyone knew of his gossip world, everyone knew who he had dated whom he had loved, whom loved him. Everyone knew, and the thought of Ridhima being that other girl on his list seemed very frightening.


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