Husky

Read Husky for Free Online

Book: Read Husky for Free Online
Authors: Justin Sayre
I guess part of our truce. And she takes a big sip and smiles. Again. Why?
    â€œI love coming here.” Ellen says something nice, so I look around to see if the park is on fire. Nope. But something’s definitely wrong.
    â€œI know?” I say, hoping she won’t hear the question mark.
    And she says, “I’m really glad you came with me.” And I don’t know where to look. What is wrong with her? Is it even her? What’s going on? And I would usually just not say anything, but I do. Why is she glad that I’m here?
    â€œOkay, Ellen, seriously, what is wrong with you today?” I can’t help myself.
    Ellen looks over at me really slowly, and I can already see a new spit bubble forming.
    â€œWhat?” she says. And I know I’ve screwed up, but I just keep going, I’m in too deep.
    â€œYou like things? You like things with me? What’s wrong with you? Are you even Ellen?”
    Ellen takes a big gulp of water and stops. I’m dead. She’s going to kill me. I’ve finally pushed her over the edge. I don’t know if she’s going to spit it at me or what, but she knows that I am thinking she might, so she stares at me and waits. Waits a little longer, her cheeks filled with all that water, and then at the last moment, takes a big swallow. This time, I’m safe. I’ve been pardoned. But only for now.
    â€œI’m just having a good day. That all right with you?” She pouts.
    â€œSure, I’m fine. But why?” I ask.
    â€œI don’t know if I should tell you now.” She mean-smiles.
    â€œYou’re going to tell me. That’s why you brought me here.”
    Ellen sits back on the bench and sort of tries to not be mad at that. One thing that always gets her crazy mad is when she thinks you know what she is thinking or you can tell what she is going to do. She hates that. I am definitelygetting water in the face today, just not yet.
    â€œFine, if you know everything in the world, figure it out,” Ellen snarls at me.
    â€œOkay, um, I don’t know.”
    â€œI know you don’t.” Ellen pucker-smiles, which is this really gross face she makes with duck lips and a snotty sort of grin. I hate it so much, I want to take my water and go, but I have to guess now. It’s the trick of that ugly smile.
    â€œUm, you’re moving to Antarctica,” I guess.
    â€œNo.” Ellen pucker-smiles.
    â€œHannah is?”
    Ellen laughs. “I wish.”
    â€œTell me.”
    Ellen real-smiles and snaps the rubber band of her side brace at me. “These are about to come off.”
    â€œReally?” I smile back. That’s all? Her braces? I thought it was a much bigger deal than that. Why does she have to make me so angry and run all over this park for something so simple and nice as that? It’s not a big deal but now I get angry about it. Really angry. I want to leaveangry. I don’t, I stay and listen as she tells me about the appointment and the retainer, and I’m smiling and listening, and then it hits me. I know why I’m angry, and suddenly all my anger turns to sadness. Or jealousy maybe.
    When her braces come off, Ellen gets to be something different. Ellen gets to go back to school with something new about her. It probably won’t change her adjective. She’ll still be super mean, but she won’t have all that metal to make her look so terrifying. I want to be happy for her, because she is my friend, and Ellen hates her braces, even more than most things. She hates not being able to eat stuff and to always be carrying around a toothbrush. And nothing makes any of it better. So I should be happy for her. But I’m too jealous.
    So I lie and say, “I’m happy for you, Ellen,” and sit on the bench and listen to more about her
new me
. And worry about my same old me.
    For the rest of the day Ellen and I walk through the park and talk about, well, everything. I

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