I was not a happy bunny. Things didn't improve when I remembered that I was supposed to be going straight to the Pinger's from school. Why me? Okay I know what you're gonna say, there are precedents, the whole school brochure thing at Warsop and more recently the Schwangerkostüm episode here in Ahrweiler. It doesn't mean I have to like it. And what's worse is that before it's always been intentional, playing a part but today, well I don't know.
I did my best to ignore how I was dressed but when everyone started talking about Martin's party it was clear that I'd made something more of an impact than I thought. I guess it didn't help that I was made Goth Königin on the night combined with my less than manly outfit!
Well the easiest way to get through the day was to act like there was nothing unusual going on. Of course I'd long suspected that pretty much everyone at school thought I was a girl – with the exception of the Head, Frau Boxberg and possibly one or two other members of staff. Frau Dürst always seems to call me fraulein and has even picked up on Gaby! If I wasn't stuck with the Wein Königin thing I could just get a number one, I'd look like a boy then – wouldn't I?
There was a bit more snow after lunch, not enough to really add any depth but enough to re-cover cleared footpaths and roads. In the end school is just school however you are dressed, some things might be less appropriate – at least it wasn't Saturday's outfit!
“Drew? Why are you in a skirt?” Kat enquired when I joined her at what answers for the Silverberg train stop.
“It's a long story Kat. You remember how the schnee came down yesterday? Well…”
“And no one said anything?”
“Well not to me.”
She shook her head and pressed the button to open the door.
“Well I guess you're stuck with it now, come on, race you to the house.” And she set off up the street.
Somewhere along the line Kat started a snowball fight, which was all very well for her in her ski pants but lets just skip the detail and say that a snowball somehow ended up inside my skirt. And tights however you look at things tend not to give much protection in that situation! We finally made it into the Pinger house where Dad was already nursing a cup of cocoa with Henryck, that's Kat's dad.
“Ach there you are.”
“Drew started a snowball fight.” Kat accused.
“Did not, it was you.” I counter claimed.
“Does it matter?” Dad enquired before things got out of hand.
“So what's for dinner papa?” Kat enquired.
“Dave suggested we go to the Shanghai Gärten.”
“I'm not exactly dressed for eating out.” I mentioned.
“I'll lend you something.” Kat offered.
“So Bernie will have the child?”
“I dunno, I think she might, she was always against terminations.”
“So young to be a mother.” Kat noted.
“Yeah.” I agreed.
We somehow ended up talking about my trip to England and of course I mentioned Bernie's position.
“Here you go, I knew it was here somewhere.”
She emerged from her closet brandishing what she described earlier as a ‘cheongsam' or something like that.
“You sure you don't have any jeans I can borrow?” I had a feeling of déjà vu – again!
“I told you, you'd look like a clown, I'm ten centimetres taller than you for starters and I'm a bit bigger in the hip too.”
“I know, but a dress?”
“You'll look cute!”
Where have I heard that before?
Well I suppose it was kinda fitting given where we ended up eating which, as you might guess by the name was a Chinese restaurant. With Mum and Maria away with Apollinaris in Austria we often seemed to do this sort of thing. Usually though I wasn't wearing a pink Chinese style dress!
Dad had to stifle a chuckle when Kat ushered me into the lounge.
“Ta da! I give you Gaby san!”
You don't get many blonde Chinese but Kat had made my face up so I looked a bit oriental. I already knew what Dad would say if I complained so what was the point? I just spent the whole day at school in a skirt so going to dinner in a dress, well I guess I did sort of land myself in this position.
By the time we headed home a lot of the snow was gone even if it was still damned cold – a fact that I knew only too well as Kat's dress was not exactly warm!
What a day! As I lay in bed I vowed not to have a repeat. What weirded me out though was my reaction to waking up with Connie cuddled up to me, or rather my lack of reaction. Well okay I was more than a bit surprised but I'm a boy and she's a girl right, surely I shoulda felt something more than surprise? On the other hand it did feel kinda nice to have her holding me, confused? I certainly am!
Tuesday was a return to normalcy, the snow was just about gone, I went to school in my own clothes and we were eating at home! When I turned on my computer about nine there was a new mail symbol flashing away in the corner of the screen. I opened the browser and downloaded the mail; ah it's from Bernie.
‘Hiya Drew, me here!
Well I've finally decided, I'm gonna keep the baby. I bet that surprised you, but I've looked at it from every angle and that's what I want to do.
I've got a favour to ask though. I still haven't told the others I'm pregnant, I know I'm a wimp but do you think you could tell them – pretty please?
Oh yeah my curfew thingy has been lifted so I can go out now which is really cool. Mum says we can go to Meadowhall tomorrow to start looking at baby stuff; I'll get properly registered at the doctors in the morning so I can start antenatal classes and stuff. Hey we'll be able to swap notes on being preggers! (Giggle)
I've decided that if it's a boy I'm going to call it Drew James and if it's a girl Gabrielle Susan, what do you think?
I read it several times; well it seemed pretty up beat but how come I get to tell the others? But what could I do, I could hardly say no.
Of course I'll tell the others for you, I guess I'm the only other one who has been pregnant – even if it wasn't for real! I don't envy you that but I'll be here for you. You can't use those names; the kid'll get a complex!
How did court go? You didn't say.
Are you going back to school yet?
I sat for a while before I started to compose a new mail to Ally, Helen, Mad and Em as well.
I know you guys have been talking again but there's something that Bern has told me but not you. I think she's a bit afraid of what you'll think and say so she asked me to tell you.
Well I'll stop beating about the bush, Bernie's pregnant and she's going to keep it. There I said it! I hope you won't go off on one again, she really needs your support right now so please be nice to her.
Catch ya later
I hit send; well I'd done it. I only hope it was okay, well too late now, Gabrielle Susan indeed!
“Drew, you seen my Skechers?”
“Er not lately.” I fibbed, I could hardly say I'd left them at Kats could I – not without loading her with ammunition for future teasing. “I'll keep a look out for them, the black ones right?”
“Yeah, I couldn't find them yesterday and I'm sure I put them in the hall cupboard. Well I'd best be off, see ya later.”
I don't see as much of my sister as I used to what with her going to school in Bonn. It takes her about an hour and a half each way on the train, which must be a bit of a drag every day, that's part of the reason she got the Mofa. If you cut across country I can get to Bonn from home in under an hour on my bike but it's not really a good idea this time of year with icy roads and all that.
As soon as she was gone I flicked open my phone.
“Kat? Hi its Drew…. yeah good morning, could you bring my shoes to school…I know, I completely forgot when I picked the other stuff up…. yeah we can swap, er thanks for letting me borrow it…. I won't forget your shoes…. lunch time, okay see you then.”
Well that's that sorted. Ooh that reminds me; I need to take Con's stuff back this morning too.
Ten minutes later I had the borrowed clothes in the bike basket and I was heading towards Bäckerei Thesing. It was another bitterly cold morning but there wasn't any ice or snow even if it was a bit damp in the air.
“Morning Drew!” Anna pulled up as I was unloading my stuff at the bakery.
“Ooh that looks interesting.” She peered into my basket.
“Some stuff I borrowed the other day.”
There's one thing about bakeries, they are usually warm and I involuntarily shivered as the warmth hit me. Everyone else was already at ‘our' table so I dumped my bag and went to pour some coffee for Anna and me.
“Morning.” I returned to Frau Thesing.
“Cheese or ham today?”
Lunch ordered I returned to my gaggle of friends.
“I've never seen you in this.” Brid mentioned indicating the cheongsam.
“Its not mine, I borrowed it from Kat on Monday.”
“Sexy!” Pia growled.
“She'd look good in a bin liner!” Nena put in.
“Guys!” I moaned, “There's the stuff I borrowed at the weekend Con.”
I presented her with her boots and a bag of freshly laundered clothing.
“You didn't have to polish my boots.”
“I want one, my shoes are always a mess.” Steff giggled.
“Girls! Your sandwiches are ready.”
“Okay mama.” Con replied.
Frau Thesing charged us each a flat daily rate of €5 for coffee and lunch, extra pastries and crisps we got a discount. Con took our money and fetched the food, overstuffed Brötchen and some sort of cake. We'd probably have much the same if we bought it at school but our €5 wouldn't include morning coffee or a can of pop.
The food signalled it was time to go so we headed out to the bikes.
Maddy Bell 03.12.08 © 2008
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