The Youthfull Bride

The Youthful Bride:

I had finished most of the house work, lunch time had past by. I made my self a sandwich with some left overs from the fridge. I went to the lounge room with mylunch and cup of tea in hand. I relaxed in one of the large comfy chairs.

 My mind drifted to my school days and how I met the man who eventually became my husband.

I went to school at Darwin High School. The school was all abuzz that morning but let me start from the beginning.

The morning broke with a dull dreary look, it had been raining the night before and the cloud had not had time to dissipate. The window gleamed with a silvery sheen as the last of the water droplets ran down to the window sill.

“Glenda” mother cried “your breakfast is ready; don’t be late for school now.”  

I dawdled down the stairs still a bit sleepy I sat down in my usual place at the table and slowly spooned sugar over my cereal. The milk seemed like it was in slow motion as it dribbled from the plastic bottle into the bowl.

“Glenda have you heard the news,” my mother said excitedly, “the exchange student is arriving today from America.”

“And that’s exciting why?” I asked. 

“Well” said my mother “he will be billeted by the Masons next door.”

“Yeah, yeah” I said as I put my head down and finished eating my cereal, “well I have a bus to catch I’ll see later,” I said as I walked through the door.

My father sat on the veranda reading the paper and his eye peered above the top of the paper. I knew exactly the look that was on his face and I couldn’t even see all of his face. You see we lived in suburb that consisted of a wide range of ethnic peoples and my dad was terrified that I would hitch up with a Greek or a Turk as a boy friend. He was even more scared that I would end up marring one the Ethiopians or Sudanese boys who lived further down the street.

“Hello Glen” The ever recognisable voice of Bruce Mason filled my ears as I meandered past his house. Bruce was a small boy for his size but he was as smart as tacts.

“The exchange boy has arrived” he exclaimed excitedly.

“Oh” I said “then where is he” I looked around and all I could see was a road and houses on stilts. “So what is it about this boy that has every one agog?” I asked Bruce.

“Well” said Bruce he’s from America,” Bruce said with a hint of glee in his voice.

“And I am supposed to be impressed?” I replied.

“Well” said Bruce you’ll see,” I knew he was being predicably cryptic but I did not bother pursuing his childish game.

The bus arrived with a gush of brakes and a puff of diesel fumes; I got on and found a lone seat near a window. With the same whoosh and flush of fumes the bus broke into the traffic and we were soon at school.

As we got off the bus there was an air of anticipation complimented by a hubbub of noise and chatter. Students in their grey and white uniforms were clambering and huddling on mass forming a military like square. A teacher arrived and shouting “Ok you brats get to your classes now.” I looked up as the populus square dispersed liked the red sea, and I saw a tall well built dishy looking boy. He looked lost and as I was about to approach him the teacher took him by the arm and led him to the office.

I was sat in class listening Miss Davis droning on about some insect or other, to which we were supposed to study the details of as a home work assignment. Miss Davis’s droning was interrupted by the door opening and then entered Mr Brahms and he was followed in by the dishy boy I had seen when I arrived.

“This is Corey Washington” Mr Brahms said in his gravely mediocre voice, “he is an exchange student from America and I hope that you will make him feel welcome here.”

I rested my chin in my hand with my elbow propping them both up on the desk, this kid was cute. My eyes followed him as he found a seat and sat down in a row across from where I sat. I pined as I longed to meet this Adonis that had ascended into my class.

The lunch break came along and I decided to introduce my self to this charmer.  I finished my sandwiches and bottled water; I looked up and saw two boys confronting Corey. The two boys were well known bullies at our school, and they appeared to be harassing Corey. Luckily the bell went for the afternoon classes.

Mr Johnston was fidgeting at the big desk in front of the class, he had an exacerbated look on his face and he looked up directly at me.

Glenda Jones” he roared, Mr Johnston always roared I think he didn’t know how speak in a normal voice. I sat up startled and saw him wiggling his forefinger.

“Go down to the store room and bring back twenty five copies of the Catcher in the Rye. I meant to organise this prior to lunch.” I got up from my seat and was about to walk out of the room when the booming voice said, “Washington go with her and help I don’t think she handle twenty five copies on her own.”

I was both excited and annoyed to think he thinks I can’t handle twenty five copies, I just shook my head.

I opened the door with the key that Johnstone had given me, my hand all a tremble. The key was sticky and did not want to turn that lock. The Cocoa brown hand of Corey Washington grasped my hand and the key turned as easy as if it were lubricated with butter.  

We stood back to back picking books of the shelf when the earth rumbled. It shook violently and as the floor weaved from side to side the two shelves near the door came crashing down. There was another rumble and the door swung shut. There was I in a closet of a room with a tall well built black American exchange student.

“Are you alright?” he enquired his voice was thick like treacle with a strong southern American twang.

“Yes” I replied “are you alright?”  

“I think so” he replied “but my foot hurts” he said.  

We were in the room for seemed to be ages, and the heat and humidity began to take effect.

“Man it is hot in here” Corey said he leaned forward and removed his shirt, “come and sit here he said patting the concrete floor next to him. I shuffled over to where he sat and he placed a well contoured arm around my shoulders.

I took another sip of my tea when the phone rang “its mother here” the voice boomed out of the ear piece. “Your step father and I have come for a visit and we’re coming to see you.”

“Oh I guess it’s alright” I said.

It must have been about an hour later that they arrived “come in” I said “can I get you a cuppa.”

“Why thank you” my mother said.

I had not seen them in about six years and they did not answer the invitation to our wedding.

We sat on the lounge reminiscing, when I looked up the wall clock “oh my I gasped “I had better get something out for our dinner.”

“No need dear” my mother said.

“No” I said “I meant my husband and my dinner” I said with a chuckle.

“So you are married?’ said mother.

“Yes I said to a wonderful…” just then I heard a familiar voice.

“Honey I am home,” it was an in joke that Corey liked to play when he arrived home from work.

I stopped what I was doing “mum this is Corey, Corey this is my mum and step dad” I said.

My mother just glared at me in that unforgiving way that mothers do when the speak without using words.

“Glenda your father would be horrified” with that she rose from the lounge and took Stephan by the hand and walked out.

Corey looked blankly at me and said “what’s all that about?”

“It’s a long story I tell you over dinner my shout” I said and we both walked out and went to Phillies for dinner. 

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Short Story
writing zaccats
And when I pass by don't lead me astray.
Don't try and stop me, don't stand in my way.
'I loved not wisely but too well'
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A rejected Story from a magazine