“Won't be a mo guys, I promised Dad I'd text Mad.” I headed to a different table so I could concentrate without the constant babble of the gang.
‘Wassup? Misd yr cl. Wl rng l8r.'
‘There, that should do.' I pressed send and returned to the girls.
“What's that about?” Pia asked.
“She rang like three times yesterday.”
“Something important?” Anna enquired.
“I doubt it, last week she spent an hour telling me about her new bra.”
“New bra? You grown again?” Con mentioned having collected our lunches.
“Not me, Maddy.”
“Oh,” she sounded disappointed, “cheese and pepperoni.”
“Sounds like she's turning into a stalker.” Brid noted.
“She is my cousin.”
I checked my handy, geez it's her again.
‘W? u been? Nd 2 tlk rgnt'
I quickly rattled back a reply.
‘Hm l8 ln wl rng aftr scl.'
That should get her off my back.
“Maddy again?” Steff asked.
Brrp, brrp, brrp, brrp.
Not a text this time.
Brrp, brrp, brrp, brrp.
“I'd best answer, catch you outside.”
I grabbed my bag and headed to the street answering the call on the way.
“Geez Drew Bond, doesn't anyone in your house ever answer the phone, I tried to ring ten times yesterday.”
“Where's the fire? We didn't get home until late.”
“Oh Drew it's terrible, Helen's been stabbed.”
“You know, sharp knife, stuck in.”
“Where? Why? Is she alright?”
“I'm waiting to hear, they're operating this morning, she was stable last night.
“Stable, that's good right?”
“It's pretty bad Drew.”
“It's all my fault.” She wailed down the phone.
“How come? You didn't stab her did you?”
“Course not.” She sobbed.
“Well how's it your fault then?”
“I got her to enter the ‘Race for Life'.”
“She was out training for it when she was attacked.” Mad blubbed.
“That hardly makes you responsible, look I'm just on the way to school, I'll ring later otherwise I'll be late.”
“School at this time?”
“We are an hour ahead here and we start earlier.”
“You coming Gabs?” Anna called over.
“Look I've gotta go.”
“Well I'm not going to school today so ring the house phone okay, her mum's gonna ring as soon as she has news.”
“What's up, Gab? You look like you lost a Euro and found a Cent.” Steff opined.
“It's Helen, she's been stabbed.”
“Your friend from England?” Pia confirmed.
“She is okay?” Con queried.
“Mad said it's pretty serious, they're operating this morning.”
“Shitza.” Brid supplied.
The group that arrived at the Gymnasium was somewhat more sober than when they had met at Thesings.
“Did you speak to him?” Carol asked.
“Yeah, he's going to ring later.”
“You look a bit better after speaking to him.”
“I was getting concerned about him too when he didn't pick up last night.”
Carol cuddled her daughter, “Come on, you can help me with this order, no good moping about, Florrie will call as soon as they know anything.”
“Fraulein Bond, your attention please!”
Drew's musing was interrupted, “Er sorry Herr Viessner.”
“So can you tell the rest of us who the single most influential person on the English language is?”
“Erm.” How should he know? He scrambled through his grey matter and made a random stab at an answer, “Shakespeare?”
“Shakespeare our little English Rose suggests.” He paused which was cue for some giggles expecting the usual put down on the hapless Gabs. “Indeed seventeen hundred new words are attributed to him, that's ten percent of the recorded language at that time. No single person has had such influence over any other language. Stefan, can you hand these out please?”
Whilst the handouts were distributed Herr Viessner continued, “Today's homework is in two parts, firstly for you to read this modern text and to identify as many Shakespearean words as you can and then to try to rewrite the passage without using any of the bards multitudinous inventions.”
There was of course the usual round of discontent then the buzzer sounded for the end of day.
“You coming back to mine? Mama's making Gänsekeule mit Rotkohl und Knödel.”
“Yeah well its Papa's birthday and it's his favourite.”
“Why didn't you say, I haven't got a card or anything.”
“Why should you give a card?”
“Well it's a bit off coming to a birthday meal and not bringing anything.”
“You are enough.” Con supplied.
“Sugar, I don't have anything to wear!”
“Spoken like a true woman!” Max noted from behind us.
“It is I, so where are you going that needs a dress?”
“Who said anything about a dress?”
“It's my dad's birthday meal.” Con supplied.
“Why not get something in town?” Max suggested.
“Because I don't.”
“That's a great idea Strechau, she's a bit down today and a bit of shopping will be just the tonic.”
“But, bum I need to ring Mad!”
“If there was any news she'd text or phone,” Con soothed, “you can ring from mine.”
“Problem solved!” Max grinned, “I look forward to seeing what you get.”
“Such a lady of breeding. Oh yeah while I remember, Gran wants to know when you are coming up to Rech again.”
“Not today, Max.” Con suggested.
“'Kay, think about it eh?”
“She will, bye.” Con pushed him out of the way, “I'll give him that, he's certainly persistent.”
“Constance Thesing, I am not interested right?”
“Whatever you say, Gabriella von Strechau.”
Connie took off like a jalapeño towards the bike sheds with me in ‘hot' pursuit.
“She loves me, she loves me not, she loves me.” Max hummed to himself on the way up to the Express stop.
to be continued....
Maddy Bell 07.09.11 © 2011