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Authors: Alan Weisz

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BOOK: Finals
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Come on, you know he never looks at that shit,” Scott said, glancing over at me before returning his eyes to the screen.

 


Don’t be so naïve. He’s not retarded.”

 

Brent let out a mockingly evil “Muah-ha-ha-ha” as he grinned smugly. “Hand over your receipts. I’ll get him to sign them. I doubt he’ll ask about it but if he does I’ll just bullshit.”

 

Bullshitting was a specialty of Brent’s, meaning whether or not the hall director detected Brent’s offense, I knew he’d get away with it. Brent could always string together a logical notion of some kind, fooling any sensible person. It was a sick gift he had perfected down to a science. If I wasn’t so disgusted by the act, I likely would have been impressed, maybe even a little envious.

 


You wanna stick around? You haven’t really missed too much,” Scott said, nodding toward the Mac.

 


Thanks, but Gavin’s expecting me. By the way, did you get anything for him?”

 

Brent and Scott simultaneously howled with laughter. “I would rather let that bitch bleed out than buy him anything,” Brent answered.

 

Similar to Spider-Man’s ability to detect wrongdoings, Gavin had an innate talent for detecting criticism, probably because it occurred so frequently. As the words, “bitch bleed out” exited Brent’s mouth, Gavin appeared magically from around the corner.

 


Brent, I thought you were going to give the winner an iPod? What’s up with all of these freaking DVDs?”

 

Gavin was intent on routing the boys from their movie to get an answer and stepped in front of Brent’s computer when he noticed the stereo system.

 


Is that a new stereo?” Gavin said, nearly choking on his words. He was clearly more aware of his surroundings than I had been.

 


Yup.”

 


Where’d you get it?” Gavin asked, already knowing the answer.

 


Why do you care?” Brent retorted, as he continued to avoid Gavin’s laser stare.

 


If you used the pageant funds to purchase this sound system, or whatever the hell it is, I do care. That money wasn’t yours!” Gavin said, shaking with rage.

 


My mom got it for me,” Scott lied, annoyed by the continued line of questioning. “Gavin, just do us all a favor and go prick yourself with a needle, okay?”

 


Brent, if you did buy this shit. I swear you’re going to get it.”

 


You know, Gavin, I always thought you could be a butt pirate, but I figured you were more of a catcher than a pitcher,” Brent said with a wicked smile.

 


Let’s study, Wayne,” said my roommate, his voice still trembling with anger.

 

As we left the room, Gavin muttered a quiet “fuckers” as we made our way down the hall to start our studying. I hated to condone Brent’s behavior but with a new iPod now snugly in my jacket pocket it was hard to be upset. At the end of the day, Brent was still my friend and I wasn’t about to be a dick and rat him out after such a thoughtful gesture. Steve Jobs and company had gone to all this trouble to please music lovers such as myself, I deserved to be happy, right?

 

In hindsight, looking back on the events soon to transpire I gladly would have given up my iPod to save Gavin from his awful fate.

 

 

 

Chapter Three

 

I
had no way of knowing for sure that Brent committed the deed. My junior detective kit was squared away at home so I had no way to dust for prints or thoroughly examine the crime scene. My intuition was the only thing I could rely on.

 

I remember walking up to my room, keys in hand, ready to unlock the door. To my surprise the door was unlocked which was an unusual occurrence. Gavin had been stressing about a paper due that morning for his Intro to Biblical Readings class, so I chalked up the fact the door was left open to his preoccupation with Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.

 

Several hours later Gavin returned in good spirits, a rare occasion given his bipolar tendencies, but his mood turned permanently sour when our hall director, the director of campus ministry, and a nun who I didn’t recognized, showed up outside our door with unpleasant news for my roomie.

 

As a Catholic, I know that besides the topic of priest molestation, members of the Church, hate, hate, hate, anyone bringing up Dan Brown’s fictitious theory that Jesus and Mary Magdalene were lovers or had in fact gotten married.

 

From previous experiences, I know this is a topic priests, nuns and any strict Catholic detest talking about. Not only did Gavin hit that ill-advised nerve, he went one step further. Apparently, in his essay, he theorized that the two were fuck buddies. To take a quote directly from his paper, “There is no doubt in my mind given Mary Magdalene’s past ways as a prostitute and with Christ’s wide spreading reputation that she took advantage of the situation and hopped a ride on JC’s disco stick.” If that wasn’t enough to ruffle the feathers of Sister Fillon, the stern nun who taught the class, the close lining, “Fillion can suck me off,” cemented his fate.

 

Gavin denied he had written any of the material, but it was useless. He had fallen out of good graces with most of the staff members at Andrews Hall due to his constant mood swings, and despite the practice of forgiveness, the Catholic faculty members at St. Elizabeth could not forgive someone who slandered their savior in such a fashion. Within a week, Gavin’s bags were packed and my favorite hemophiliac walked out the doors of our dormitory, never to return.

 

I recall listening to Gavin softly weep into his pillow the night before his parents came to collect him. As his roommate, I should have comforted him with some reassuring words, but what was there to say? “Hey Gavin, I know you don’t really think Jesus banged Mary Magdalene.” I’m sure he would have felt much better.

 

I decided to let him cry it out as I prayed his luck would eventually turn around. Even though he was a pushy, self-righteous pain in the ass, Gavin didn’t deserve to be expelled. In spite of his ever-changing temperament, deep down he was a decent guy.

 

With one final hug, Gavin bid me adieu as he drove back to California with his parents the next morning. That was the last time I saw him. On occasion, I Facebook-stalk Gavin just to see what he’s up to. Unfortunately, the last time I looked at his page, he was still living at home working part-time at Quiznos, and going to a community college.

 

When we moved out of Andrews Hall at the end of our sophomore year, I questioned Brent about the whole Gavin ordeal. I wouldn’t see Brent for an entire year since he would be going to study abroad in Paris, so I figured now was as good a time as any to ask. Had Brent fucked up Gavin’s life and his chance of really becoming something in order to protect himself from the damage the hemophiliac could have caused had he told someone about the pageant purchases or was this all some fantasy running through my head? I needed to know.

 

As we packed up our last belongings before leaving for the summer, I inquired about Brent’s role in Gavin’s expulsion.

 


You know Wayne, the world is filled with fanatic religious bloggers, I’m sure plenty of people think Jesus and his gal pal fooled around.” That was all I got followed by a fist pound and a “I’ll see you when we’re seniors, bro.”

 

 

 

Chapter Four

 

T
he mongoose to my snake, the Toby to my Michael Scott, also known as the
girl responsible
for single-
handedly
shattering my heart into a million pieces
,
was a French major named Hayley Summers.

 

On paper, Hayley was perfect. She grew up in the suburbs of Los Angeles and, like me, was an only child born with a silver spoon. Hayley went to a private Catholic girls’ school, and graduated valedictorian of her class. Following her parents’ example, as only children often do, she selected the University of St. Elizabeth as her school of choice.

 

She was well spoken, a stylish dresser, could bake wonderfully and had brains to boot. With a sleek physique and hair so goldenly glorious even Paris Hilton would have to call her a bitch, it was not difficult to find this California girl attractive. Falling under Hayley’s spell was easy, the truly tricky task was getting past the facade to discover the girl’s genuine form.

 

Like every idiot with a Y chromosome, I
fell
into Hayley’s trance instantaneously. The first time I met her was at
The
Gazette
’s introductory meeting
,
where the paper’s editors get together with their reporters for the first time. The beginning of my junior year I was the editor of the living section, but I had
my
eye on the editor-in-chief position, which was to be
vacated
once Ike Mingler, the current man in the top spot
,
graduated.

 

At this little congregation, Hayley was perky with an upbeat attitude, evoking the image that she’d be a delight to work with. During our initial pleasantries, I couldn’t help but envy Mingler
,
since she was assigned to work under him. He had a hot blonde reporter, while I was stuck with Edward Wades, the ghost pale,
WoW
playing freshman who was entirely incapable of discussing anything other than mages and paladins. Although I didn’t chat with Hayley long, because Edward had become an additional appendage, as I watched her glide from one conversation to the next with a rare confidence that most underclassmen lacked, it was clear this girl possessed a divine charismatic charm. There was no denying the fact that I badly wanted to get to know this attractive sophomore reporter.

 

For many blossoming college relationships, alcohol tends to be the common connector. Hayley and I were no exception; however, Beyonce’s “Single Ladies” did contribute to the cause. At a
Gazette
party in September, I stumbled onto the dance floor along with my fellow intoxicated journalists when everyone’s favorite jam came on. Toward the middle of the song, I somehow ended up behind Hayley and the dry humping commenced. Due to my consumption of a few too many drinks, I don’t precisely remember how Hayley ended up in my bed. I vaguely recall spouting off a few cheesy lines such as, “I don’t have a ring to put on your finger, but I can give you something better than that.” I’m not positive what I said, but I know it was terrible and I know that it worked.

 

The next few hours were a blur. We didn’t have sex but I was given the privilege of exploring Hayley’s temple. We made out like horny teenagers for an hour then spent the next simply cuddling next to one another discussing our dreams and learning about each other.

 

That one night
encompassed
the fantastic four-month ride that was my relationship with Hayley. We never got that wasted
together
again,
but
the passionate kissing
turned
into sex eventually. The feelings that I felt with her that first night continued to intensify, growing stronger with each passing day, and as Hayley and I wasted our weekends away in bed together, I slowly began to
let
my guard down. I told her details about my life few others had come to know. I told her about my family, my friends, traumatic moments that occurred in my life; I trusted her completely. For the first time, I had a stomach full of butterflies and it was all thanks for one gorgeous blonde.

 

Unlike yours truly, Hayley wasn’t the hopeless romantic mushy-gushy type. She called me “babe” and held my hand in public, but she was never very affectionate and found muttering those three words to be impossible. She wouldn’t even let me flaunt our relationship on Facebook, which I was dying to do. To college students, becoming official on Facebook is the equivalent of shouting your love from a mountaintop. It is unarguably a very big deal and despite constantly bugging her about it, I would always get the same answer. “You know I’d love to babe, but I want to remain professional. I don’t want the reporters at the paper to think I’m sleeping around.” I admit that Hayley’s logic was baffling since she was only sleeping with me, but to appease her, I did not alter my relationship status.

 

As the fall semester began to wear down
during
my junior year, I knew my relationship with Hayley was bound to change no matter what my relationship status read on Facebook. Hayley was leaving to go to France for a semester and maintaining a long distance
relationship
would be extremely difficult. I didn’t know it at the
time
but she was soon to meet up with my
best bud
, Mr. Brent Crane, who was already halfway through his year-long stint overseas.

BOOK: Finals
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