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Catatonic 03.01 (972)

by salmintea

Making friends wasn't really my strong suit. Unlike Emberly, who already had a group of friends to run to at the front doors of the school. Jeez, she had one dance practice at the new studio and she already had a circle. I, on the other hand, was not as friendly. I found my locker, 227, and tried to act like I had been there since the beginning of the year. None to my surprise, it worked. No one introduced themselves, no one asked any questions. I was completely and utterly invisible.

When I entered my English classroom, my presence was hardly noticed. Two boys were staring at their phone in the back and laughing. Three girls were in a corner, two of them trying to console the third who looked like she was about to cry a waterfall. And, of course, there was that one couple that didn't even make you wish you were them because they're display of affection was enough to make you want to throw up.

There was only one pair of eyes on me. It was a bit with light blonde hair sitting in the front. He was the only student in his desk pair, and I assumed it was a safe seat to take. I set the books down on my desk, and he said, "Hey, you're the new kid? Ms. Alaster mentioned you a week or so ago. Benjamin Flenderson, right?"

"Ben's fine," I replied, opening up a blank notebook and a pencil.

"I'm Peter Bakowski, but you can call me Pete, if you want." He held out his hand and for a minute I wondered if I should shake it. He didn't seem like the kind of kid who would pick his nose or not wash his hands after using the urinal. He was wearing a white button up, which to be fair was a little crinkled, but come on. A button up? To a high school class?

"Are you in band?" I asked while flicking my pencil between my fingers.

He lowered his hand, "Yeah, actually. How'd you know?"

"Lucky guess."

Pete looked at me a little puzzledly and opened his mouth to speak when just then, the bell rung and the teacher walked into the class. She was a plump short woman, and she practically screamed purple. Purple shoes, purple pants, purple scarf, purple cardigan. All different shades, mind you. Her name was Ms. Alaster as Pete had mentioned earlier. She stood in front of the class, hands folded in front of her, with a sickening enthusiasm.

"It appears we have a new student today. Everyone, this is Benjamin Flenderson, Lanson High's newest student. Benjamin, this is everyone."

She had a giggle in her voice that felt like a cold knife scraping against my ear. She raised her eyebrows so high I thought they were going to pop off her forehead, and motioned for me to stand. Reluctantly, I did as asked, and pathetically, Peter clapped his hands.

"Ben is fine," I said to the class before taking my seat.

It had barely been ten minutes into class and I'd already humiliated myself. I wouldn't last the day if I had to do this every class.

Thankfully, Ms. Alaster cleared her throat, and began to teach the lesson, which I was only half paying attention to as I started to sketch a beaded eye in my notebook.

Peter slightly turned himself towards me in his seat, and asked me bluntly as he watched Alaster, "Why did you come here in the middle of the semester?"

"Because I felt like it." I outlined a beak and a feathery head.

"No, really."

I hesitated. "I was in the mafia but now the head mobster is out to kill me."


"Because I was in it for his daughter."

"And he didn't like that."


"Why not? You seem like a respectable guy."

"Because he wants his daughter to marry a man with a fortune, and that isn't me."

"That's stupid. Wait, but if he's your boss, couldn't he just raise your pay?"

I actually laughed, "You would think so."

Peter smiled and chuckled a little, too. I knew he didn't really believe that I was involved in some kind of mob, but it gave us some sort of bond, I guess, and he knew that my move wasn't something I wanted to talk about yet, which was good enough for me.

"So, what are you drawing?" He asked.

"A bird. Crow, I think."

"Mmm..." Pete murmured in protest, pointing to the page, "The beak is too small to be a crow's. It has to be longer and a little curved. Right now it... kinda looks like a puffin."

I cocked my head to the side, and grinned. It did look a little like a puffin. I flipped my pencil over to the eraser and began to fix it.

"So what does the head mobster look like?"

I looked him straight in the eye, and he returned the look with a hopeful friendless that made me smile. "A big guy. Really big guy."

"Any scars?"

"Oh, yeah. Has one that goes right over his eye and through his eyebrow." I dragged my finger over my eyelid to give him a visual.

"Oh really?"

"Yeah, it's super sick."

So, I guess I could say my first english class at Lanson's went well. Peter and I had found an inside joke that we could go on for months about. He continued to give me bird drawing tips about how the wings weren't positioned right, and I'd tell him about the head mobster and his daughter Penelope who I'd been madly in love with, but was forbidden to marry. Honestly, I couldn't remember anything that Alaster taught me, but whatever it was, it couldn't have been that important.

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562 Reviews

Points: 14535
Reviews: 562

Tue Feb 05, 2019 6:17 am
FlamingPhoenix wrote a review...

Hello, FlamingPhoenix here with yet another review for you, but this one will not be like the other two I have done for you. After reading this chapter I decided I would give you a good well deserved review.

Let's start.

May I just say, wow. This chapter was very, very interesting. I had lots of fun reading it. Why you ask, well I'll get to that now.


You see before now, I thought Ben couldn't even pull a normal happy smile, but to day you proved me wrong, It was so exciting, I got to see a hull new side of Ben, and that is really good for building up his character. I feel like after finding out a little more about his character today, I have formed a stronger bold with his, and I think his new friend Peter is a really good mach for him. He seems like a really funny guy, and he might help Ben get over what has happened in his past. So I can say I'm looking forward to see what will happen next. Because I have a feeling those two will get into a lot of trouble in the future soon to come.


I really like your description in this chapter, I feel like you've added it in a lot more then your last chapters. I really like the way you described Peter. It didn't feel like a list of words when you did it, It was very well done.
I had a good image in my head that's for sure, and as I read through your chapters I can see that writing in first person is very different to third person. So well done.


In this chapter I didn't really see anything happen to the plot, I think this chapter was mainly about Ben bonding with Peter, so I do hope to see more in the next chapter.

Over all comments

This chapter was very well done, and I think your writing is getting really good as the chapters go on, so I look forward to the next one.
I do hope to see more of Ben a Peter together, they look like they could be very interesting together, and I wonder how their friendship will work.

Well I'm off to review the next chapter, Never stop writing and have a great day/night.

Your friend
FlamingPhoenix. :D

salmintea says...

Thanks so much! Yeah, this chapter was very small and there wasn't much added to the plot... but I'm getting there!

Okay, look forward to the next chapter.

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19 Reviews

Points: 152
Reviews: 19

Sat Feb 02, 2019 8:42 pm

User avatar
19 Reviews

Points: 152
Reviews: 19

Sat Feb 02, 2019 8:41 pm
salmintea says...

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132 Reviews

Points: 698
Reviews: 132

Sat Feb 02, 2019 8:17 pm
Bullet wrote a review...

Hi salmintea! Oliver here to review yet again. Let's get into it.

Again, I would have liked this chapter to be a little longer. The description and the dialogue is apt, really natural and well-paced. Ben seems like just a regular high school student so far.

Now to get into the nitpicky stuff:

It was a bit with light blonde hair sitting in the front.

I'm not exactly sure what 'bit' is supposed to mean here. It threw me off and made the sentence read weird.

Purple shoes, purple pants, purple scarf, purple cardigan. All different shades, mind you.

The 'All different shades, mind you' made me chuckle. Nice little bit to throw in there.

Also, why is making the new kid introduce themselves something teachers do? It's so humiliating! Also a nice touch.

She had a giggle in her voice that felt like a cold knife scraping against my ear.

This is such great imagery, I love it.

Overall, this was another great chapter and I can't wait to read more. Great job!

Keep writing,

- o.s.e.k

salmintea says...

Thank you so much! I believe "bit" was supposed to be "boy." Oops.

I'm glad you liked the imagery and the "mind you" bit! I was hoping to spark that reaction!

- B

"The bird that would soar above the level plain of tradition and prejudice must have strong wings. It is a sad spectacle to see the weaklings bruised, exhausted, fluttering back to earth."
— Kate Chopin, The Awakening