Gaby galloped down the stairs and jumped from the second to last step, landing with a thud. “Ready?” she asked. She looked like a magazine model. Her dark spiral permed hair sprayed to perfection and adorned with a pink lace headband. I wished my hair looked that good.
Mine was a limp, dishwater blond mop. Mom said we couldn’t afford to perm my hair. I had learned to wash it at night, braided it while it was wet, and then took them out in the morning. I’d use as much Aqua Net as I could get away with, but the waves would be gone by lunch time. Today, I waited until just before leaving home to let braids out. My hair still looked okay.
Jerry walked in dripping water. He grabbed a can of Coke from the fridge. He opened it up and tipped it back. I watched his Adam’s apple moved while he downed contents. He wiped his mouth with the back of his hand, looked at me, and laughed. “Oatmeal! Is that you?” he asked.
I blushed and looked at my feet. “Her name is Rose,” said Gaby. “She hates being called Oatmeal.”
“You’re not a plain bowl of oatmeal. You’re sugar and spice and everything nice,” he said sing song like.
“Stop it, you jerk.” Gaby slapped his arm.
“No. I meant it. You’ve grown up and, well…” He smiled wolfishly. “You look nice, Amelia.”
I felt my cheeks grow hotter. Did he mean it? Why did he have to call me Amelia.
“Maybe we could see ‘Back to The Future’ later if Gaby doesn’t keep you away from me,” he said.
Gaby stood with her hand on her hip, glaring at him. “What? I’m serious,” he said to Gaby. “Unless you don’t like watching movies,” he said to me.
“I’d like to see a movie with you,” I managed.
“Great. I’ll meet you girls out at the mall.” I nodded. The butterflies churned in my belly. The thought of seeing a movie with Jerry made me feel like I was floating on air. I need someone to pinch me because this couldn’t be real.
For three hours we trolled the mall. First to Casual Corner, then to Gadzooks, and then to Contempo Casuals. One hour in, Marcy took her green jelly shoes began rubbing blisters on her heels. She walked around barefoot until a clerk told her to put them back on. I spotted Jerry and waved for him to come over. He was carrying a bag imprinted with Camelot Music. He showed us the two albums he had bought: Prince and 10,000 Maniacs.
“We’re are going to watch ‘Back to The Future’. Anybody else going to join us?” asked Jerry.
Gaby shook her head. Marcy and Barb wrinkled their noses and shook their heads. They were more of the ‘Sixteen Candles’, romance movie watchers. I liked them too, but most guys passed on the romance movies if they could talk their dates into watching a comedy.
Gaby then stared at Jerry in some unspoken language. “You don’t have to stick around until after the movie. I’ll make sure Amelia gets home,” Jerry said. Gaby looked at me. I smiled and nodded in agreement. The girls continued shopping. Jerry and I walked to the theater.
The movie was wonderful. Jerry was a gentleman and held doors for me. He paid for movie ticket, popcorn, and drinks. It was on the way home when things didn’t seem right. He pulled off on a dark less well traveled road and I started to feel uneasy. He shut the car off, but left the ignition in the auxiliary position and the radio on. He pulled me next to him on the bench seat so our sides touched. He left his arm draped around me. “What time do you have to be home?”
I swallowed hard. My heart hammered. I had hoped he would hold my hand during the movie or give me a goodnight kiss as he dropped me off at home. This was too much, too soon. Is he going to kiss me if I look at him? “Eleven.” I lied. Curfew was midnight.
He dramatically tipped his arm up to look at his watch. “It’s only nine thirty. We can take our time. Get to know each other better.” He placed a kiss on my neck below my ear. “Mmm…you smell good.” He kissed my neck again.
Afraid to move I said, “Maybe you should take me home earlier.” He kept kissing my neck. It felt good, but wrong at the same time. I pushed against his chest and he let me slide away. “Maybe we should talk and get to know more about each other.”
He sighed. “What do you want to know?” Then he inched closer to me and held of my hand. He rubbed the back of my hand with his thumb and then brought it to his mouth. He kissed it repeatedly using his tongue. He kept watching me like he wanted to devour me. Then he put his right foot over the bump on the floorboard and slid closer. “What do you want to know about me, baby?” He began kissing my neck again. This time he used his tongue. His hand found my chest.
I pushed at his hand. “We shouldn’t do this. I don’t want to have a baby.”
Without pulling away, he reached around with his left hand and produced a wrapped condom. “I don’t want to be dad yet. I know you want me. You made yourself all cute and you smell so good.” His hands were all over me. I pushed at them and tried to move away, but couldn’t. “Awe, don’t be a prick tease. I know you want it.”
While I tried to sort out if I was a tease or had led him on, he managed to coax my body and his into position with his weight pressing me into the seat. He never hit me. He never yelled at me. He forced his way in. It hurt. I winced. “Oh, yeah, you like that, don’t you?”
I wanted him to like me. I wanted him to be affectionate, but not this way. “No. I don’t want to do this.” I pushed at him, but he was too heavy and strong. He finished. After he zipped up, he cranked the car, and began driving.
I throbbed with pain as pulled my clothes back on. On the drive back to my parents, neither of us said anything. When he pulled into the driveway a few minutes before eleven. I got out. Neither of us said goodbye and he drove away leaving me standing on the sidewalk in front of the house.
I felt dirty and gross. I couldn’t tell Mom or Dad. They’d say I could have stopped it at any point. It was my fault this happened. I must have wanted it.