Post 70 — Smells Like Teen Spirit (Part 2)

Chrissie looks on as Kathy gets made up for the lead in "Harlequin", wondering why her sister gets everything and she has to be in the ensemble.

Chrissie looks on as Kathy gets made up for the lead in “Harlequin”, wondering why her sister gets everything and she has to be in the ensemble.

Chrissie flicked the cigarette butt out of the treehouse and pumped her fist in triumph as it sailed across the yard and landed in the drainage ditch, sinking with a little sizzle. She pulled out another unfiltered Winston from the package and lit it with a sigh. It was easy enough to charge cigarettes to the family account at the store, but it had to be the brand her dad smoked to avoid calling attention to the scam. She wished he smoked Kools – those sounded so much better.

She thought about actually inhaling with this one, but changed her mind. She was mostly interested in how dramatic it looked to gesture with a lit cigarette in her hand; she would worry about the actual smoking part later.

Her sisters mocked her treehouse but it was nice to have somewhere to go to be alone. Their new house was huge but it always seemed to be filled with Kathy and Carolyn’s friends, and it was tough trying to keep up with that crowd. Here she could be alone with her thoughts and the two small trolls she had brought up to keep her company. She had passed her troll house and the extensive collection of accessories down to Karen, stating that she was bored with the silly dolls and would rather play with Barbies now. But for some reason the busty dolls didn’t make her as happy as the trolls had. Barbie always seemed a little too judgemental.

“Chris is having her group over during the day. There are seven sixth grade girls that are bosom buddies, and I use that word carefully about that blossoming group. There are also five brave seventh grade boys that aren’t afraid of them. The difference in numbers doesn’t seem to bother anyone . . . the whole group is slightly nutty and have fun together. I think they will have a weenie roast and an egg hunt, plus other activities Chrissie is supposed to organize. “

Jean

Her heart stopped, along with the bottle, right in front of Kevin, the boy she had been crushing on all year.

The activity she had organized had been put on hold until her mother went over to a neighbor’s for coffee, but now the group was deeply invested in a game of Spin the Bottle, which was way more fun than the egg hunt had been.

Kevin grabbed her hand and she followed him into the closet. The cramped, dark space was even hotter than the room, with a funky teenage boy smell that was only slightly masked by the overpowering aroma of English Leather, the scent of choice for all males under the age of 15 on the island. Her hands were sweating and she wiped them surreptitiously on the back of her shorts.

Chrissie’s thoughts were all over the place as she prepared for her first kiss. How exactly was this supposed to work? What position was the nose supposed to be in so it wouldn’t be in the way? Should she lick her lips first? She had just decided that when the party was over she would start a diary so she could record this memory but she wouldn’t begin with Dear Kitty because Anne Frank had already used that and look what happened to her when Kevin grabbed her and kissed her full on the mouth. She stood frozen for a moment, and then relaxed a little as their mouths shifted, trying to find a better fit. She started to feel a little tingly and was thinking that this might be okay when, out of nowhere, his tongue slipped into her mouth. She pulled back in horror, and frantically wiped the shared spit off her lips. No one had told her about this part! This was almost too disgusting to contemplate and she pushed past him and out of the closet and went to sit next to her friend Liz in the circle.
“What happened? Did he try to grab something?” she whispered?
“He stuck his tongue out!” Chrissie hissed, trying to look calm but wanting to wash her mouth out with orange Fanta.
“He’s supposed to do that!” crowed Liz, much louder than was necessary. “I can’t believe you didn’t know that!”

Kevin sat down across from her looking embarrassed and the group seem to find the whole thing entertaining, with the boys smacking each other and the girls giggling nervously.

At that moment, Chrissie would have welcomed a tidal wave; a big wall of water that would wash through the room and carry away all of her friends and deposit them on the other side of the island where she would never have to see them again. French class was going to be hell on Monday.

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