Snapped Guitar Strings and Broken Hearts


I sat down in the back corner seat of English class while Mrs.Doury droned on about Shakespeare. I already knew most about him. I’d read most of his books in 7th grade.
I hated English for one reason—and it’s not the subject. Here I am, without Rob, stuck in here for 45 minutes, with him. And he sat right next to me.
So, around 10, maybe 15 minutes into the period, Brent started to give me awkward glances. Oh, crap… was my hair sticking up? My shirt wrinkled? I began to think of many flaws until one thing happened. He whispered to me.
“ Gwin?” His voice was cautious. My eyes widened in surprise. Being near him was extreme for me. Now, he was talking to me. “ That is your name, right?”
Brent’s voice was…. like candy for the ears… It was so attractive, a very low octave, but still young and right for his age. He was eyeing me cautiously.
“ Y-y-yes?” I stammered, bringing my hazel eyes to his golden ones. That’s when I really saw his eyes. They looked like an extremely faded brown. So very beautiful.
“ Do you… know when the period ends?” Brent asked, trying to be casual. His gaze fluttered downwards for a brief moment or two.
“ Yeah…” I said, a bit more confidant speaking to him, now. “It’s at 9:33.”
He smiled at me, but it wasn’t his entire smile. I wondered why… That was so odd, not to show all your teeth.
I gave a shy grin and turned away, pretending to look at the clock. Only 15 more minutes…

The bell rang for the second time that day, partially alarming me. Brent got up swiftly and looked back at me, his dark brown hair cascading over one eye.

His face stayed in my mind throughout the day. The way his brow furrowed at almost nothing. The way his hair stayed on his face, almost jagged looking. His odd smile, full of pearly white teeth that normally only belonged to movie stars or models.

When I almost bumped into him at lunch I was startled. He was laughing with some other friends that I barely recognized. But he wasn’t eating. Brent never ate. I had always wondered why. Maybe he was anorexic or bulimic. He was extremely skinny, and pale. I had always noticed these things.

At the end of the day, when I climbed into our usual seat on the bus, soaked from the usual rain that came at the end of the day, Robby looked at me funny.
“ What’s up with you?” He asked, poking me.
“ Brent…”
“ Awww…. Your crush…”
“ Yes, yes…. Robby, he talked to me.”
“ Whoa.”
“ Yes, I know. That’s the thing… Oh, Robby… He’s so…”
“ Gwin.” He started, rolling his eyes and cutting me off. “ Gwinny, I am not your little…er…. girlfriend that helps you with your boy problems.”
“ I know, Robby…” I sighed. I never had anybody to talk about guys too. I had no friends that were girls. I had Robby and my dad—that’s helpful.
“ So, anything else happen today?”
“ Nope, nothing interesting besides…Brent…” I was reluctant to say his name. It was so beautiful. When I said it, it was like I was ruining it. “ Anybody ask you to the ball?”
“ Nah, nobody. You?”
“ No. I would’ve told you so you would get off my back. You of all people should know this, genius.”
“ Why thank you. I know I’m a genius. You’re just jealous. Now… WILL YOU PLEEEEEAAAASE GO TO THE BALLL WITH MEEEEE??!” He whined pathetically.
“ No.” I answered flatly, putting in my ear buds and blasting my music, trying to concentrate on the riffs and chords so I could practice when I got home.
“ Don’t you ignore me, Gwin!” He pulled out my right ear bud and I began to whine.
“ Please?” He asked politely in a small voice, batting his eyelashes that were caked with mascara and surrounded by eyeliner.
“ Ugg. Only if Brent doesn’t ask me….” I sighed.
“ YAY!” Robby squealed and pulled me into a tight hug.
“ Ow, Rob!” I struggled in the grip of his normal arms that contrasted with my more pale ones that came with being in the dark for long hours.
“ Oh. Sorry. Don’t wanna squish you…. Or do I?” Robby brought his face dangerously close to mine.
“ No. Bad, Robby!” I slapped him. He shrunk back, still grinning. What was up with him and what drugs was he taking?

“Bye, Gwin!” Robby called as he walked towards his house, on the opposite side of the street.
“ See ya, Rob!” I shouted back, running up to the front door. Apparently Dad wasn’t home yet. His standout orange Honda was yet to arrive in the driveway. I shoved the faded bronze key into the lock and twisted, pushing the door open with my foot.
“ I’m home!” I called to nobody, flinging myself up the stairs and into my room. I set my bag on my bed and sat there, not really expecting anything, not really knowing what to do. The computer beeped and I rushed into the chair, expecting a message from Robby. But it wasn’t him

XxDeathstarxX: Hey, is this Gwin?
Gwinny666: Uh, yes… who is this?
XxDeathstarxX: It’s Brent.

My heart was suddenly beating faster than ever. He had got my IM. Oh, no… what will the world come to?

XxDeathstarxX: Um… did you leave?

The screen flashed and the speakers played a tiny clip of ‘Bleed Black’ by AFI. I realized that I had sat there for a minute or two.

Gwinny666: No, no… I’m here.
XxDeathstarxX: Okay, good.
Gwinny666: Um… how did you get my IM?
XxDeathstarxX: Looked you up.
Gwinny666: On what?
XxDeathstarxX: A directory for AOL members

Okay, well, that’s reasonable… So, he likes me. Probably wanted to ask me something. This is nothing.

Gwinny666: Oh, okay. That’s okay. Is there anything you wanted to ask me?
XxDeathstarxX: Um, yeah. There is.
Gwinny666: And… what would this be?
XxDeathstarxX:.... Would you, uh… sit with me at lunch tomorrow?
Gwinny666: Uh, sure… I guess
XxDeathstarxX: Great! I’ll meet you by the entrance that is near room 107.
Gwinny666: Okay, will do.
XxDeathstarxX: See you tomorrow then, Gwin. Bye.
Gwinny666: Bye.
XxDeathstarxX has logged off.

Whoa. I just talked to Brent Thomas for 15 minutes. Soon enough, I was on my feet, jumping up and down and screaming like a crazed teenie.