My hands flailed about in the slime, grabbing onto small rocks and fidgety fish.
‘Haha, you’re such a loser!’
I felt so embarrassed, showcasing my stupidity in front of Kensey and her gang, but the Kensey bitch had gone too far. Throwing my Oculus in the slimy pond next to their hang-out spot by her house was dirty playing. Literally. God only knew how many boys peed in there. Or worse.
And where was Silo when I needed him?
‘You’re such a fish-monger, Rye-Rye.’ I hated that nickname.
Kensey’s roaring laughter could have easily scared the birds. I suddenly wished that she’d annoy them so much they’d take revenge by pecking at her plastic face. I did not understand why she passed as pretty. With her eyes too wide and far apart and her nose hanging over her upper lip, she looked more like an alien than human being. Moreover, Osculists were famous for their small, compact eyes, and their pudgy noses. I wanted to scream at Kensey that she was the freak, not me.
‘Shut up, you –stupid!’ Why could I never come up with a half-decent comeback?
The lack of response worried me. It wasn’t like I was defenceless against the stupid human-sized Barbie dolls with mule faces. I had arms and legs, equipped to… well, walk and grab on things. Surely they could punch and kick as well?
I heard steps oozing through the slime-covered earth closer to my back.
‘I bet if I kick her in, she’ll be more complacent,’ she said. As soon as I felt her breathing in my neck, I instinctively shot upright, pushing her back to fall on her bum. In the slime. Whoops.
Now the laughter was louder than ever, and for the first time, not directed at me.
‘Oh, now you’re dead!’ Kensey’s eyes meant murder.
I prepared myself to fight for it, even though my mind was back in the little pond, where my unfortunate Oculus rested. Stupid reddish rock, why couldn’t it just get out of there on command? Meanwhile, Kensey made her ungraceful return from the slimy ground, and I could tell she smelled like the stuff on her butt. My own face wanted to contort into a grimace of ridicule and triumph. But not just yet. I had to get out of the mess first.
In a flash, she grabbed me by the shoulders and pushed me back toward the stupid little pond. I braced myself for the slime greeting I’d get for my dumb mouth. Surprisingly, my bottom clashed against solid ground. For a minute, I felt disoriented. Maybe Kensey did not do the math right, so I’d fallen next to the pond instead of in it. But her stricken face revealed a different story.
I looked around to comprehend what had happened. Suddenly, everybody’s faces were on the figure that came from the house. When I saw who it was, my stomach clenched in an all-too-familiar nauseating fashion.