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Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Friendship · #2319269
Charlie and Mike have a falling out
Charlie fumed in the back of the classroom, staring daggers into the back of Mike’s head. He’d lied to him. He swore that they’d take the GED class together, take the test together, and study together, but Mike lied.

He was so angry that Mike showed up to just two classes, bailed on the other eighteen, took the test early, and that ass passed, and now proudly sat at the front of the classroom like Charlie didn’t even exist. And he called himself a friend to boot!

Charlie received a sixty-nine on the test, he needed a seventy to pass. He ran a hand through his dark hair, all of his dreams crumbling around him, including the relationship with his best friend.

“Some friend,” he muttered.

Just before the bell rang to release the summer school students, Mike turned around and flashed him a bright big smile. Did he think for one second that Charlie was happy for him? That they could still be friends after Mike bailed on him when they had a pact? Hell, Mike didn’t even want to take the class or the test in the first place.

The bell rang, Mike rushed out of the room and out to the hallway. Charlie gathered his test results paper and tossed it into his folder and the folder into the backpack. Walking home he hoped to burn off some of this negative energy, and then try to remain calm when he told his mother that he failed.

That damn word ripped right through him, making anger step up and burn through his veins.

Heading to the door, he was surprised to see Mike waiting for him.

“He buddy, what’s up?” Mike said, draping his arm around Charlie’s shoulder.

Charlie shoved Mike’s arm and kept walking.

“Whoa, what did I say?” Mike asked.

Charlie ignored him and continued moving down the hall, but Mike was determined to figure out what was going on.

Mike caught up to Charlie and matched his long stride, heading for the doors that led to the football field.

“What's wrong with you?” Mike asked.

Charlie kept moving, but the more Mike asked, the angrier he got.

“Earth to Charlie,” Mike said.

That did it. Just hearing him call him use his mother’s constant phrase to get his attention when he was a little kid sent his blood boiling.

“You’re what’s wrong with me. Just leave me the hell alone, would ya.”

Charlie made it to the double doors and threw them open, increasing his stride.

“Hey man, wait up,” Mike shouted.

A timely getaway was not to be.

Mike grabbed Charlie by the shoulder. Charlie dropped his bag, made a fist, and turned around, clocking Mike in the cheek. Mike shoved Charlie away, but Charlie came right back and punched him in the stomach and again in the face.

Mike hit back, connecting with Charlie’s jaw. Obscenities were shouted, and others gathered around the pair. Some cheered them on until two other boys got in the middle pulling Mike and Charlie apart.

“Jesus, Charlie, what did I ever do to you?”

“It’s not what you did, it’s what you didn’t do, asshole,” Charlie said. He picked up his backpack and headed for the football field, taking his favorite shortcut home.

It wasn’t long before he felt Mike behind him.

“Are you going to talk to me?” Mike asked.

“You passed, congratulations. Now leave me the hell alone.”

“Is that what you’re pissed about? How bad could you have done?” Mike asked.

“If you were my friend, I’d tell you, but since you’re not, I’m not.”

“You can’t be serious,” Mike said.
Charlie stopped walking and turned toward Mike. “We had a pact. You said you’d stick it out, one damn month, and you couldn’t even do that.”

Mike looked down at his feet. “I know I said that, but once we started taking the practice tests and I was acing them, I didn’t see the point.”

“Exactly, you only thought about you. You know I struggle with math, I could’ve used your help, but you didn’t see the point.”

Mike sighed. “I’m sure you can retake it in a few weeks. I’ll help you study, no problem.”

“I don’t see the point,” Charlie said, turned and walked away.

WC: 714
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