Welcome back to another episode of My OLD Writing. Step into the time portal and travel back with me 12 years to when I was geeky and awkward (for the record, still kind of am). Last time, we read the first section of a terrible story I started concerning a photography school, our protagonist, Lila, who seems to have a knack for flirting with the profs, her best friend, Samus Martix, a man named after a female superhero with a last name that runs close to “red pill blue pill” if you catch my drift, and of course, the prof himself, Mr. McFadden, who doesn’t understand the function of curtains or their importance. Let’s see what else is in store for these characters as the story continues (because I sure as hell don’t remember what I wrote)…
[Side note: After including the first portion of this story, I discovered that I had put the rest of the story in a different notebook. After an arduous search through my filing cabinet of old (and often) lost stories, I finally found it nestled in the back of the bottom most drawer. It looks as though I rewrote it (or at least attempted to). There is an inclusion of a character named Ross who was up to shenanigans with the characters during their time in school and is now mysteriously absent… After reading through it, I’ve concluded that this story is still a turd.]
Samus stared back at the photograph. “Oh Ross…” he quietly said, focusing on the young man holding a silly string can. He had black hair and was wearing a red t-shirt and black baggy jeans, which both looked two sizes too big. [I know why he isn’t there–he shrunk into his clothing!]
“You lived by the sword,” he said, not looking away. […What? This isn’t Game of Thrones, buddy.]
“Samus?” Lila asked, concerned with the look in his eyes.
“It’s nothing.” he replied, tucking the photo into his binder and focusing back on Mr. McFadden.
Chapter 2 [Oooh!]
He felt the cold air hit him, almost knocking his head back. Whiplash. He pulled his sweatshirt closer, trying not to shiver. It wasn’t that cold, maybe chilly. He staggered as another strong gust hit him. [Is he in the middle of a freaking tropical storm?] Climbing up the steep hill through the weeds, he felt a splash as his right leg was drenched in muddy water. Rolling his eyes, he pulled his foot out and continued up the hill. Samus was exasperated from all the activity of the day. [“DAMN! I HATE ALL OF THIS MOVING AROUND!] A new teacher, impossible homework and a level of extreme photography which he didn’t even want to get into. [Then why are you going there?! Samus is a bit of drama queen.] They had been trekking up the hill for a half an hour, searching for the perfect place for a shoot. The group was almost a mile ahead of him. [Did they sprint? Good God.] Even though these weren’t ideal conditions, Mrs. Berry had insisted on getting the first shot done before dark. He could already see the light fading with the storm clouds taking hold.
The place the group had finally stopped [was?] a grassy valley, with huge rocks, and the stormy sky had covered every single stream of light leaving it desolate and wet. [That storm moved in super fast!] He perched on a rock, over viewing the landscape. It was too marshy to set up a stand and with the harsh wind, it would be even harder to stand. The teacher looked around noticiing that every one was stumbling around trying to set up the equipment. So she assigned partners. [Wow. Great help, teach.] Samus jumped off the slippery rock and strode over to Benny J.
Benny was a shorter African American with black dreds which came down to his cheekbones and big baggy pants which were soaked from the water. [What is the obsession with the big baggy pants in this book?] On top, he wore an indigo blue sweatshirt with a black shirt underneath with “Staind, Break the Cycle” printed across it. [Oh, God.]
“All we got is time.” Benny said, crouching to get the 50 mm lense out.
“50 millimeter, what are we getting?” Samus asked, spreading the legs on the tripod. [Benny’s unusual nickname: 50 mm.]
“Weren’t you paying attention?”
“No, I’ve got other things on my mind.” [School isn’t nearly as important as what’s on my mind.]
“A tree, a stone, a river, a forest…anything.” [Well, then I guess it didn’t matter if he was listening or not!]
“Still photo?” Samus questioned, screwing the camera into place. [Wh-What? There’s a hurricane bearing down on you and you want to take a “still” photo? Of trees? Of a RIVER?]
“Yep.” Benny said, twisting the lense into place. “What could you possibly have on your mind besides photography? You always look forward to this class.” [This is the beginning of the year! How could he ALWAYS look forward to it?] He found his place behind the camera and zoomed in.
“We’ve got a new science teacher this year. Mr. McFadden.” [Wow. THAT’S what’s bugging you?]
“You have Mr. M? Do you like him? He substituted a couple times last year.” Benny replied, and looked into the camera. “Samus.” Samus looked at where he was standing and moved noticing that his left arm was in the way. “Thank you.”
“No. I don’t like him. Lila seems to though. How come I never had him?” he asked, noticing that Benny was focusing on the willow tree next to them.
“You missed the day of school rules and expectations. [They have a DAY for this?] He was covering Mr. Scott’s science class.” Benny answered, snapping the photo.
“Shit!” he exclaimed, hopping back from the camera. He ran around to the front to check the lense. “I can’t take any damn pictures anymore! [Woah! Hold up! You took ONE! JUST ONE!] I swear it! I try to take one, my damn hair gets in the way! I need a hat or something. You take it! You ain’t got any hair to deal with.” [So…the dreads that are at “cheekbone length” are TOO LONG and somehow wrap themselves around the front of the camera and get in the way of the shot? WHAT?]
Even at his age of 24, Samus had voluntarily shaved his head. He felt he looked better without short course hair. Samus pushed Benny lightly out of the way and moved the camera; he could feel it sink into the damp grass as he did. He focused the camera to look up a tree and zoomed out a little to include the trunk. Then he snapped the picture.
“Do you think she’s going to try anything?” he asked Benny as he recoiled the camera [Re-what?] and aimed it at a rock he had been standing on. Benny immediately stopped scratching the back of his head and walked up to Samus.
“Sam, Lila wouldn’t do something. You’ve known her the longest. I bet she’s in her class right now, probably already forgotten whatever she was thinking about before.” Benny said, tilting the camera down to catch some land below the rock. [So, you hope she has short-term memory loss.]
“I don’t trust that. Normally, I’d respect what she was thinking but now… I don’t trust it.” he said, letting Benny snap the photo. [What is this symbiotic thought-sharing going on between them? How does he know what she’s thinking right now!?]
“Rap it up! We’ve got 5 more minutes before we have to go back.” Mrs. Berry shouted from the center of all the other students. The two chuckled as they swiveled the camera to look at the grey and dreary sky. And then snapped the shot. [Why are they chuckling? Weren’t they all just anxious and upset a moment ago?]
And so ends Chapter 2. We’ve learned absolutely nothing, other than Samus can hear peoples thoughts and Benny’s dreads can change length at will. Tune in for chapter 3 of this school drama fest next time on Horror-FAIL Friday.