Arrowheads – Season 1, Episode 2, – Running Up That Hill
CAITLIN’S HOUSE – ROCKY POINT, PA – OCTOBER 1, 2016
My palms begin to sweat more and more as I approach Caitlin’s house. It’s a nice house. Large, a cream color, has two columns in the front like the White House, an Irish flag hanging on the flag pole, just below the American one. In a nice area of town too, not the rich part, but not the poor part either. Just perfect. After a brief pep talk to myself, I ring the doorbell.
After about a minute of waiting, Caitlin opens it. She’s beautiful, everything I want in a girl. Cascading curly red hair. Emerald green eyes. Cute freckles. Everything.
She rolls her eyes after realizing who’s at the door. “Kai, you’re lucky I’m home alone, my dad would kill you.” She begins telling me. “I know, I’ve been a creep. But Caitlin, please. I need to talk to you.” I respond.
Caitlin begins getting angry. “Are you fucking kidding me? Why should I? You’ve been following me for months, sent me creepy letters, my parents are looking into restraining orders against you.”
“Please…please.” I say, pleading with her. She finally eases up. “Fine. But don’t expect much from it.”
I come inside and we each take a seat on her living room couch. “I just wanted to apologize for the way I’ve been acting, Caitlin.” She sighs. “Yeah, I accept your apology, is that all?”
I shake my head. “No,” I begin. “I wanted to let you know that I’ll leave you alone if that’s what you want. The last thing I want is to make you uncomfortable, or to do something that you’re not okay with.” Caitlin smiles. “Wow, Kai, wow. That’s very mature of you to say.”
I smile back at her. “I really do think you’re a sweet, and, uh, passionate, guy,” Caitlin begins. “It’s just sometimes people aren’t compatible, and unfortunately I think that’s the case with us.” I nod in agreement. “Yeah, I agree.”
“Maybe, in a different world we could…”, Caitlin begins to tell me before her voice trails off. She stares deeply into my eyes, giving me the look. I gaze back at her, before taking the biggest risk of my life. I lean over and kiss her, right on the lips. She pulls back almost instantly.
“What the fuck Kai?” She asks, sounding confused but not angry. “Um, I don’t know…”, I say, before we both lean in to continue. She pulls back again, this time with a smirk. “I hope you came prepared.” She tells me in her sly voice. I smirk back.
ROCKY POINT HIGH SCHOOL – ROCKY POINT, PA – OCTOBER 5, 2016
Olivia rolls her eyes and groans as she takes a seat next to me. “Gigi, this book is gonna kill me.” She tells me in an annoyed tone. “Why?” I inquire, not really caring. “Because it’s a boring book with boring characters and a boring plot and, ugh! I just hate it!” She yells.
I pat her on the back, trying to comfort her the best I can. “Well, the test is today and then you don’t–”, I begin. “What? The test is today?” Olivia screams, interrupting me and disrupting the whole class.
I look around and notice everyone staring at us, including Mr. Novak. I try to hold back a laugh. “Yeah, today’s our final test on the book, and then you’re done with it forever.”
Olivia lets out a long sigh and slams her head onto her desk. “Gigi, I’m only on chapter 5, I’m gonna fail this. So long Ivy League, I’m gonna be stuck at Redmond County Community College.”
I notice some other classmates holding back laughter as well. “Olivia, we’ve reviewed every chapter of the book in class, you have to have picked something up from there.” I tell her. She picks her head back up and looks at me. “You think I was paying attention to what Mr. Novak was saying? I was just looking at those sexy lips and hot–” She begins before noticing that Mr. Novak is standing right next to her.
“So are you feeling okay today, Olivia?” He asks her, always caring about his students, even the obnoxious ones. “Yeah, I’m just a little stressed that’s–” She begins to say, before getting cut off by Mr. Novak. “Are you sure? You look dehydrated, I’ll write you a pass to the nurse.” He says, trying to help her out.
Olivia is clueless. “What? No, I’m fine, really.” She continues. I roll my eyes. “Olivia, I agree with Mr. Novak, go to the nurse.” Suddenly, everything clicks with her. “Oh, yeah, I do feel a little dehydrated, thanks Mr. Novak.” She says, collecting her things and slowly exiting the room.
“That was really cool of you.” I say to Mr. Novak. He shrugs it off. “Eh, I hate to see my students struggling.” He responds. “Yeah, it’s nice to know that some teachers care about their students, even the most obnoxious ones.” He laughs. “Obnoxious? I wouldn’t consider you obnoxious.”
I’m a bit confused. “I was talking about Olivia.” I say, laughing a bit. He smirks. “Well, you see. I wasn’t trying to help out Olivia.” He responds. I can’t help but smile at that.
“You can tell?” I ask, laughing quietly. “Can I? I’m a writer, I create characters. You need to know a good deal about people and how they act in order to do that. I knew that girl drove you crazy from the minute you two walked into class on the first day of school.”
I laugh as the bell rings, signifying that class has officially begun. “We’ll finish this conversation another time.” Mr. Novak says to me as he walks to the front of the room. Why is he the most perfect thing to ever exist.
ROCKY POINT HIGH SCHOOL SWIMMING POOL – ROCKY POINT, PA – OCTOBER 16, 2016
Jake and I’s relationship has been getting better gradually over the past few weeks. We’ve talked and I think that he’s really beginning to accept who he is. A few years ago I was in the same position he’s in right now, all it takes is time.
I sit on the bleachers around Rocky Point High School’s swimming pool amongst a crowd of people, mostly middle aged mothers and freshman girls. The boy’s varsity swimming coach announces the names of each team member as they leave the locker room and sit together on the Arrowheads’ side of the pool.
“Senior, Jake Knudsen!” The coach announces as Jake runs out to applause from the audience. As he takes a seat next to his teammates, he makes eye contact with me in the crowd. I give him a big smile and mouth “good luck”, but receive no response back. He whispers something to the guy sitting next to him, and they both look back at me with a malicious grin and a laugh. My smile fades and I leave the bleaches in a hurry as I notice the two of them laughing.
ROCKY POINT HIGH SCHOOL – ROCKY POINT, PA – OCTOBER 17, 2016
“What the fuck was that?” I audibly yell through the halls at Jake before school starts. He’s alone, sitting up against a wall near the cafeteria, probably waiting for his friends to arrive. “I don’t know what you’re talking about bro.” He responds, although he obviously does.
“Yesterday, at your swim meet.” I say, trying to kick start his memory. He shakes his head and shrugs. “You were there? Didn’t even notice.” I roll my eyes. “Yes I was and yes you fucking did.” I say, getting angrier.
He gets up and stands closer to me. “Listen here, you’re lucky I don’t want to get kicked off the swim team because I would kick your ass right now. Leave me alone, everyone knows you’re obsessed with me and it’s weirding everybody out, stop now or things will get even worse.” He tells me, getting more aggressive than I’ve ever seen him before.
“Lucky for you, I have nothing to lose.” I say, before punching him right in the jaw. He takes a good hit but comes back, hitting me in the nose, causing it to bleed. A group of students rush over to us to watch the violence go down.
We continue fighting until two administrators separate us from each other and drag us to the assistant principal’s office.
ROCKY POINT HIGH SCHOOL ASSISTANT PRINCIPAL’S OFFICE – ROCKY POINT, PA – OCTOBER 17, 2016
“So can you explain to me what exactly happened, please?” The assistant principal, Miss Wislicki asks us, seemingly fearing that we’re about to hit her. Miss Wislicki only became assistant principal this school year after the previous one’s retirement. She’s in her late-20s, has very little experience, and is terrified of high schoolers. Great traits for someone whose job is to discipline high school students.
“I was just sitting down waiting for my friends, when Nicky came over and started yelling at me for no reason. I told him to leave and he just started hitting me. I don’t know what’s wrong with him!” Jake yells. “Bullshit.” I respond. “Nicky, can you please watch your–” Miss Wislicki begins to tell me, before she stops herself as I look in her direction. What a terrible assistant principal.
“You want the full story? I’ll give you the full story.” I begin to say as I notice Jake getting angrier and angrier. “Me and Jake here have an intimate relationship–” I say before Jake interrupts me. “Shut. Up.” He says, trying contain his anger. “Well,” I continue. “Whenever I see Jake in public, he’s completely rude to me. And that takes a toll on a person. This morning he said he’d beat me up if he didn’t have to worry about getting kicked off the swim team, so I decided to initiate it for him.”
Miss Wislicki seems overwhelmed. “Oh boy, well this is quite the situation.” I can’t help but roll my eyes a little. I notice Jake does as well. “I trust that you boys can resolve this on your own, you’re free to go to class.” She tells us with a large smile on her face, as we both get up and turn to the door.
“This isn’t over.” Jake tells me in an aggressive tone as he pushes me aside and exits the office in front of me.
ROCKY POINT HIGH SCHOOL – ROCKY POINT, PA – OCTOBER 20, 2016
“We are so gonna kick ass, Ryker.” Natasha says to me as she signs our bands name on the sign-up sheet for the school winter talent show. I laugh. “Yeah, definitely. I mean it’s not like we have too much competition.” I tell her, reading the names off the list.
“Might have to watch out for Olivia Kraft.” Natasha responds, laughing. I laugh back. “Yeah definitely, don’t want her ‘electro-yodeling’ putting us in second place.” I joke.
I love spending time with Natasha. She’s a cool person, probably one of the coolest I’ve ever met in my life. My friends aren’t crazy over her for some reason, I don’t know what it could possibly be. She’s down-to-Earth, intelligent, creative, hell, she’s pretty too. I don’t know what else someone could be looking for in a friend.
“So how about you come over to my place tonight for a songwriting sesh?” She asks me. “I wish I could, but I have plans with Katy tonight. Going to L’Essenziale so you know it’s a big deal.” I tell her. “Oh, okay.” She responds, a little disappointed. “I mean, we can hang out tomorrow though, just not tonight, okay?” I try to comfort her.
“Yeah, no, I get it, she’s your girlfriend, she’s obviously gonna be your number-one priority. You have to put your relationship in front of everything else, right. Schoolwork, friends, band practice.” She tells me. “What? Everyone knows Forecry is my number-one priority.” I tell her, a little bit confused.
“Oh, really?” She questions. “I just assumed that you were prioritizing Katy, my bad.” She tells me, as passive-aggressively as possible. I shrug it off. Just Natasha being Natasha.
“Can I ask you an unrelated question?” Natasha asks me, changing the subject. “Yeah, sure, shoot.” I respond. “Okay, so,” She begins. “I think Eric is in love with me, and I just wanted to know if I’m being crazy paranoid or not.” I can’t help but hold back a slight chuckle.
“Wow, I wasn’t expecting that.” I exclaim, causing us both to laugh. “Sorry, I know, I was just wondering.” She tells me. “He does. He’s had a thing for you since you guys first met. But you know how shy he is, so he hasn’t said anything to you about it. And don’t you dare tell him that I was the one who told you.” I tell her.
She giggles. “Thanks, and don’t worry, I don’t think he’ll be mad you told me at all.” She says. “Hmmm, why not?” I ask. She smirks one of her trademark Natasha smirks. “I guess you should just wait and see.” She tells me. “Wait and see?” I ask. “So you think you’re gonna make a move on him?”
She sends another one of her smirks my way. “Yeah, I think I will. He’s a cute guy, my type. I like guitarists, even the ones who don’t sing. Bye Ryker, I’ll see you tomorrow, my place at 6, okay?” She says before skipping away, continuing on her day.
“Yeah, okay.” I respond, as she leaves. Now, while I’m as happy as can be for Eric and Natasha, I can’t help but be a little worried. What if they breakup? It could ruin the band forever. And also, I’m just a little bit concerned that she meant me when saying even the ones that don’t sing.
L’ESSENZIALE RISTORANTE ITALIANO – ROCKY POINT, PA – OCTOBER 20, 2016
“So that’s why you canceled dinner a few weeks ago, Katy? Why didn’t you just tell me?” Ryker asks me as he sits across the table from me. I shrug. “I don’t know. I didn’t really want anybody to know. It’s not an ideal situation.” I respond. Ryker sets his fork down.
“You know your dad can’t do this. It’s called domestic violence and it’s a crime.” He tells me, grabbing my hands across the table. I look into his eyes. “I know, I know. It’s just…hard. He’s my dad, my mom loves him. I can’t just tear everything apart like that.”
Ryker gazes into my eyes as lovingly as he always does. “Yeah, I get it. Sorry. I should’ve tried seeing it from your perspective.” He tells me. “Don’t be sorry, it’s nothing. I just wanna go back to when we were a real family. You know? We’d all eat together at the dinner table, tell our stories, listen to some weird 1980s Soviet music in the background.” I reminisce, giggling a little towards the end.
“Why not have an intervention?” He asks. “You haven’t met my dad; he doesn’t respond well to criticism. If we did that things would just become…even worse.” I say as my voice begins to trail off.
“How could things get worse?” He asks me. I don’t answer, and instead just gaze off into the distance. “So how was your day babe?” I ask, trying to change the subject. “Same old, I think Natasha and Eric are gonna become a couple though, so that’s pretty cool.” He tells me.
“Wow!” I exclaim, shocked. “Good for them, they’d be really cute together.” He laughs. “Yeah, I can’t say I’ve pictured them together forever or anything, but I think they’ll work out nicely.” He says. I laugh a little bit to myself. “I have to be honest though, I always thought Natasha had a thing for you and was trying to tear us apart or something.” I tell him.
He laughs. “Nah I doubt it. Natasha’s like my sister, and I assume she sees me the same way?” He tells me. “You assume she sees you as a sister?” I ask, jokingly. He laughs. “You know what I meant.”
“Here is your bill, I hope you had an excellent dinner.” Our waiter tells us as he hands us the bill and takes our trays away. I open it and read the price. “Shit. I hope you can afford this because I definitely can’t.” I say to Ryker.
Ryker laughs. “Well good thing for you, I am a gentleman. The gentleman always pays.” He responds. I roll my eyes. “Equality.” I tell him, before handing him the bill. He takes his wallet out of his pocket as he begins to read the price, before putting it right back in. “Shit.” He exclaims.
I laugh. “Yeah, I know.” I respond. “Well, you know what this means?” He asks me. “What?” I respond. “This.” He says, before grabbing my hand as we run out of the restaurant together. I love him.
PENNIE’S HOUSE – ROCKY POINT, PA – OCTOBER 21, 2016
“So, what have we learned thus far, guys?” I ask the group before taking a hit from a joint I rolled myself. “I’ve learned that when girls say they’ll call you back, they don’t mean it.” Kai says, still in a glum mood.
“Kai, fuck Caitlin. You don’t deserve someone who treats you like shit, that’s what I’ve learned.” Nicky tells him. “Thanks man, I really appreciate it. So what did happen between you and Jake, I’m hearing about it all over school?” Kai responds.
Nicky sighs. “To make a long story short he’s an asshole and if he wants to mess with me one more time I’m gonna end him.” Nicky says, angrier than I’ve ever seen him before. “But I thought you liked messing with him?” I ask, confused. Nicky rolls his eyes as the rest of the group laughs. “Not in that way, Pen.” He tells me.
“I think Mr. Novak wants to fuck me.” Gigi states, monotonous. “Wow, Gigi! That’s such good news!” I exclaim. Gigi laughs. “I mean, it’s cute having a crush on a teacher, but a teacher having a crush on a student. I don’t know, it weirds me out a little bit. Like, I don’t even know if I want to fuck him anymore.”
I roll my eyes. “Don’t let Olivia get him. We all know you want him Gigi, go and get him!” Katy nods her head. “I actually agree with the ditzy ball of fuzz over here for once.”
“Shit.” Ryker states, before getting up to get his coat. “Where are you going?” Katy asks him. “I forgot, I’m supposed to hang out with Natasha, don’t wanna be late.” He tells her. Katy pouts. “Really? You can’t cancel?” She pleads. Ryker gives a tiny smile. “Nah, I already bailed on her yesterday to hang out with you and she was pretty pissed.”
Katy’s pout turns to a face of anger. “What? She expected you to pick her over me?” She asks, getting angrier. “I don’t know, she’s Natasha. She wants what she wants. I’ll talk to you soon though, babe. Bye.” He says, giving Katy a kiss and walking up the stairs, leaving.
“Okay, I need to rant for a second here,” Katy begins. “I think Natasha is trying to steal Ryker from me.” We’re all shocked. “What? I don’t believe it. Wasn’t she getting with Eric?” Nicky asks. “Yeah, but, well. I don’t know. It all just seems really suspicious to me. And I’ve always thought she had a thing for him.” Katy continues.
“Katy, c’mon, you have to just be paranoid.” Gigi adds in. “I hope I am but I don’t think that’s the case. Natasha’s always had it out for me, always kicking me out of band practice, always stealing Ryker away from me. It makes complete sense.” She cries.
Before anyone can say anything else, my phone begins to ring. It’s Portia. I answer. “Hey, Portia, what’s up?” I ask her.
“What? Who died?”
“Geoff? Who is that?”
“Fine, I’m coming. Be there in a few.”
“Sorry guys, one of Portia’s friends died apparently, she wants me to come over right now.” I tell Gigi, Nicky, Katy, and Kai. “Oh my god, poor girl.” Katy says. “You guys can stay for as long as you want, but I’ll catch up with you later.” I tell them as I rush upstairs, on my way to Portia’s.