The Best Birthday Present – November 17th, 2000

Today, after my parents left, I shot straight out of bed, took the pain killers mum gave me earlier, and ran myself a bath.

Baths are the best way to start the day. I soaked in there for about 40 minutes until the water started to go a little cold. We have coconut body wash at the moment, and I used about half of it. It smells so good. I love coconut right now.

When I got out the shower, I put coconut oil on my legs too. See? I just can’t get enough of the stuff.

Smelling a bit like a cake, I walked to my room naked to decide what to wear today. That’s the great thing about being home alone. Walking around naked. It’s a great feeling, unless you get caught.

I went into my wardrobe to decide what to wear. That was the hardest thing in the world. I kept looking in there and seeing absolutely nothing, NOTHING, that I wanted to wear today. I get so depressed looking in there sometimes. I wish I had pretty clothes like the other girls at school.

I ended up picking out a sky blue dress with a white hawaiian pattern. This is NOT, I repeat NOT the sort of thing that I’d usually wear. It’s a bit out of fashion now, Hawaiian print is so 6 months ago, heh heh. But in all honesty, I usually wear mostly dark coloured clothing, black if possible. But today is special and I want to look like a girl.

I blow dried my hair so it would look silky, it’s past shoulder length at the moment.

I was just applying my makeup when there was a bang at the door. I held my breath trying not to panic, because it sounded like the way dad bashes his fists on the door when I’ve done something…

I opened the door, and phew, it was just Shane.

‘Just’ Shane. Strange way of putting that when it’s not how I feel.

He handed me a bunch of pink daisies, and a box of chocolates. “Early birthday present”, he said. EEK! Cute! He said I looked beautiful. I didn’t feel it, I felt like an idiot in that dress, but who knows, maybe I did look okay.

He’d bleached his hair back the other day, and it’s usually spiked. But today, his hair was gone. He’d shaved his head with like, a number one or something. It was so, so short. It looked SO GOOD.

He was wearing a navy flannel check shirt, which had little dots of paint on it from where he’d been helping his dad paint the fence. He was wearing a white t-shirt underneath. I honestly haven’t seen anyone look as good as he did this morning.

His hair kind of reminded me of Eminem. So that makes him a Mexican Eminem. Mexinem, if you will.

I grabbed him by the shirt and kissed him really hard and pushed him through to my room. He’s never really been in my house before, because we’ve never wagged school together. He laughed when he saw my posters, but I just pushed him down onto my bed and kissed again to stop him mocking my Freddy Prinze JR poster.

It was nice, being in my bed together with him. I felt like a grown up. Like this was our house. I swear, we’d fooled around in there for 2 hours before I realised that I should probably call mum.

I went to pick up the phone and a weird tone came up. The phone had been cut off.

This would usually be a bad thing. A terrible, unthinkable thing. But today it was a blessing in disguise.

No phone meant I could go out. Nobody would be able to contact me, and would assume I was there, but had no phone connection.

This was the plan:

Dad wouldn’t be back until 3pm at the earliest, which meant that we could go out for a few hours. On the way back home, I’d pick up Lucozade and some more pain killers from the shop. That way it would look like I’d just wandered up the road for supplies if dad came home before I was back.

I quickly put on my bikini and threw some towels in my bag, locked up the house, and we walked around the corner to his car.

We went straight to the beach.

It was warm, but not hot. But who cares about the weather.

We put down our towels next to eachother and took our clothes off so we were sunbathing in our togs. I was lying on my side, facing him.

He started pulling faces at me, and when I laughed a gust of wind came and filled my eyes and mouth with sand. I started shaking my head and poking my tongue out. So embarassing! He was laughing his ass off at me.

We were lying there for an hour laughing about pretty much everything, when we went quiet.

He kissed me lightly, then he said, “I love you”.

I smiled and told him I love him too. My heart was banging, actually thumping. I’d never really done this before.

Then something changed in his eyes a bit and he said, “I know you love me. But things are different now. I LOVE you love you. Before, we were just like best friends, but now it’s more”.

So this is it, I thought, time for ‘that’ talk. I’d been dreading it. Sure that he would want to call it off or cool it down. And I didn’t think I wanted that.

“When you’re 16, we’ll run away together”.

I was laughing. Surely he was kidding?

He told me he was serious. Deadly serious. He wanted us to get out of this place and go somewhere, just me and him. And then I realised, so did I. I started thinking then, the second that I turn 16, I’m packing my bags and I’m going with him.

“Are we really going to do it?” I asked him. He nodded at me seriously. I think it’s what we both need. Our home lives are so shit, we need to make a new start.

I wish we could do it now, but we’re not that stupid. With me being under 16, they’d find me straight away and drag me back to that place. If I’m 16, I can just refuse.

I can’t think of anything better than to go off with him. I just hope time goes quickly.

He told me that he wanted to make me his wife one day. That’s so old fashioned. But it’s his culture. His mum married his dad young, and he wanted to do that too.

It’s all too much to take in so quickly.

I know all of this probably sounds really stupid, really teenage and silly and idiotic. But it isn’t to me. To me, it means everything.

We held hands in the sun for a while, but the time went too quick and before we knew it, it was time to go home.

On the way back we snuck kisses from eachother when we were sat at the traffic lights. We picked up my Lucozade and pain killers.

When we got back home there was still nobody home. YAY!

I snuck Shane back into the house where we had a shower and washed off all the sand, then went back to bed.

Then, at the wrong moment, I heard dad’s van come down the path.I swear both our faces went white.

Shane clambered back into his jeans, picked up all his clothing in a ball, kissed me goodbye and shot out of the window and over the fence to the neighbours garden before I could even blink.

I quickly put on the TV, chucked on a t-shirt, and opened my Lucozade, kicked my presents under my bed.

Dad put his head around the door. “How are you feeling?” He asked me.

“Much better”, I replied. “Oh, and the phone’s out”


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