“How does someone even get knocked out twice in one day?” I heard Andy ask. Everything was black. I couldn’t see.
“I can’t see!” I wailed.
“Open your eyes, dumbass,” Andy said.
This is the part where I got a concussion. If Shelby didn’t think I was a total freak already, this definitely sealed the deal.
After a car ride engulfed in awkwardness, we pulled into St. Bartholomew’s Hospital of Beaver Falls, PA.
When Shelby had asked if we could listen to some music, I’d attempted the whole cliché as-she-reaches-for-the-radio-my-hand-will-brush-hers thing. Unfortunately, when we both reached for the radio, I stopped paying attention to the road and swerved into oncoming traffic.
Blasting car horns on all sides sounded as a sky blue Mercedes barely missed us. My tires screeched as I swerved us back into the right lane. Shelby looked like a scared rabbit, wide eyes and flared nostrils. When I caught my reflection in the rearview mirror, I looked like an even more scared rabbit.
“Whoops,” I said, trying to play if off like it was nothing, but I felt like she could hear me sweating.
She shot me a terrified glance, then turned on the radio.
“Trying to be my best, when I fall, it’s a mess!” screeched through my shoddy speakers.
There was blood everywhere, and tears in her eyes.
God, that sounds like the chorus to a Hawthorne Heights song.
I didn’t mean to punch Shelby Waters in the face. I didn’t mean to break her nose. I didn’t even know I could break noses. I couldn’t even snap a pencil in two, which was pretty embarrassing when I tried in front of my sister, then the next day she told her whole second grade class.
Maybe I should back up.
I’ve been balls-to-the-wall in love with Shelby Waters for two years, ever since she transferred to my high school and lent me a pencil during sophomore year English. She smiled at me, and that was it. It was all over. I’ve never been able to look at another girl. I think I still have it. The pencil, I mean. It’s pink. Don’t tell her, though, ‘cause I don’t want her to think I’m a stalker. I’m not a stalker. I mean, I stare at her a lot, but I don’t wait outside her house in the rain dressed like the Unabomber.