The Passed Note Issue 1 June 2016 - Page 14

“Bad enough.” I fold my arms. “We ever getting it filled?”

“You know I can’t do anything while there’s snow on the ground,” Jack says from behind the tractor. “I can go down to Home Depot, get one of those orange traffic cones if you want. Early birthday present for you.”

“Never mind.” I turn to Donny. “Can we just go?”

He waves an arm toward the door with a flourish. “After you.”

As we ride up the driveway in his truck, he says, “Never had to tow you out before.”

“Just got distracted.”

“Happens to the best of us, I guess. ‘Course, I’ve never gotten stuck.” That sneer of his is what made school hell for me, from kindergarten to high school. All my teachers had Donny first, and he was a goddamned terror. Smartass, never turned in homework but somehow managed to graduate. For the past twelve years, I’ve watched every teacher’s eyes narrow when they run across my name on their roster.

“Are you related to Donald Bailey?” they always ask. It took weeks, sometimes months, of turning assignments in early to dig myself out from under his reputation.

Donny whistles as he pulls around behind my car. “You’re stuck, alright.”

“Shut up.” I glare not at him, but at the mailbox row.

He follows my gaze.

“You’re coming tonight, right?” When I frown, confused, he continues, “Party at Carol’s? For Des?”

“What?” My birthday is two days away. Eighteen, the big one. Is this some bitchy scheme to one-up my party?

Donny grins. “She got a letter from Bucknell. Big envelope.”

My stomach plunges. “You’re joking.”

“Nope. Early decision.” He reaches in the back of his truck for his tow chain. “We making it a joint party?”

This isn’t happening this isn’t happening this cannot be happen-ing right now.