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Amanda's Eyes - Chapter 7
Submitted by woody on Sat, 10/04/2008 - 22:25
Seven – The Shock
...Even more strange, she’d just spent at least half an hour in the presence of other people without shouting at anyone, without cursing, without really thinking at all about not being able to see. Just what was she really feeling?
Tuesday, the asshole tried again. He asked how she was doing, and she lost it. Her thoughts from the night before came flooding back to her and built the rage up to an unstoppable level. She screamed at him -- he’d probably fucked his girlfriend over the weekend, it must have felt great. It hurt, it wasn’t fair! He was out there having a fucking great time while she sat in her room and played with herself. He actually had an interesting life, a job, a girlfriend, his own car, and sex. He surprised her when he told her that his girlfriend had dumped him over the weekend, but so what? Now he’d have to find another girlfriend. Oh, no, what a horrendous chore.
“At least you had a girlfriend. I’ve never had a boyfriend, and I never will. I won’t ever go to another school dance. I won’t ever have a real date. Oh nooooo, it’s such a shame that your plans for homecoming are screwed up.”
He echoed her parents and everyone else with a comment about how she could do anything she wanted to do. She really couldn’t take another person giving her that same old crap about her potential, and if he mentioned anything about “the inspiring story of Helen Keller,” which would surely come next, he was dead meat. She'd scratch his eyes out, and then he'd find out first hand what being blind was like.
Taking a deep breath she was about to scream at him that he should keep his fucking mouth shut until he understood how it felt to lose everything, but then words she never, expected to hear from a guy again trickled through her ears and swirled around her brain… “Why don’t you come to my homecoming dance with me? I’ll prove to you that even after your accident you can still have a good time.”
WHAT? Did he say what she thought she'd heard? It was like a punch in the gut. She felt all that wonderful anger she’d built up deflate like a popped balloon. The feelings just whooshed out of her, and while she wanted to come back with a taunting reply, she couldn’t, it just wasn’t there anymore. She understood what the phrase "fish out of water" meant. She must look like one to him right now.
Finally regaining her voice, “…Did you just invite me to your dance?”
Yes, he had, it turned out. And it seemed like he meant it. She was so surprised that she accepted without even thinking. Why did she accept? She had no idea; it didn’t make any sense that this guy she'd been abusing the shit out of every chance she got would invite her to a dance. Stranger yet, why would she go?
All he’d seen of her was the nasty blind girl who bad mouthed everyone. Was this a trick? She wanted to grab that idea and go with it, treat it like the only possible reason he'd asked her. She’d been tricked before. She understood tricks and had built up her personal outlook to deal with them, but this time, every one of her sharp senses told her that he was sincere. Without taking the time for her head to answer, her heart screamed, “Yes! Go!” If it was a trick and she didn't have real fun, she’d find a way to get revenge.
She was quiet and thoughtful for the rest of the reading session. When they finished, Ken accompanied her out to talk to her mom. He introduced himself and told her that he’d invited Amanda to his homecoming dance, relating some of the logistics for the weekend.
The football game was Friday night at seven o’clock. If she’d go to the game, he would take her. Dress for it was casual, but it was outside, in October, so wear or bring enough to be warm. The dance was on Saturday night at eight. It was semiformal and traditionally included starting the evening eating at a nice restaurant. He'd take her to both if that worked for her.
Her mother asked Ken if he was really serious about this invitation. When he replied that he was, she promised that if Amanda wanted to go, she’d help her get ready. Her mom wrote out their address and phone number for him. Ken was about to give her mom his contact information when she scowled and he handed her the note instead. One of the things she hated was when people talked around her as if she wasn't there or wasn't capable of participating.
The mood during the ride home was different than the usual. Amanda felt weak and small and leaned against the car door, head bowed, feet pulled up on the seat, arms around her legs. After a bit, Kate asked, “What just happened there?”
“I have no idea. We were screaming at each other. In fact he finally lost it for the first time and was yelling back at me -- we were really going at it -- then suddenly, out of nowhere, he stopped and asked me to go to his dance with him. His girlfriend broke up with him over the weekend, and his plans were ruined. I guess he needed a substitute.”
“Do you think he is sincere about taking you?”
“He seems to be. I’d almost like to believe it’s a trick, but I really don’t think it is. I haven’t really talked a lot with him this week, but he does seem like a nice guy.”
“Do you want to go? You haven’t done anything like that since before … you know … before the accident.”
She thought to herself, did she want to go? Why did she accept? Was she willing to try getting out again?
She sighed, “I guess I could try.”
Strange, after the way the first one turned out, her mother was okay with her going out on another date. Even more strange, she’d just spent at least half an hour in the presence of other people without shouting at anyone, without cursing, without really thinking at all about not being able to see. Just what was she really feeling? She leaned back into the seat and closed her eyes.