DIDN’T MEAN TO
by Galilea Oregon
Who are we? That’s the burning existential crisis kind of question we all ask ourselves at one point while staring into our mirrors. High schoolers? Sure, but it goes beyond that. It goes beyond simply going to school and homework and sports. We are more than just your average suburban high school teens. We’ve got our loads of issues too, man. It’s hard and heavy and terrible and sickening to be in high school. Then there’s the problems with our parents. Who was at your fifth grade play when you had the lead role? No one, not even your grandma. And those problems include never getting in trouble. Not even when you punched someone in middle school and gave them a bloody broken nose, or even when the cops chased you for crawling down into the sewers. You’d think your parents would pull you out of school or take away your phone, but no. Nothing ever happens to us. Not even when we messed up that bad. But that’s what makes us, us, right? That’s why we pushed ourselves as far as we could go, just to see when someone would tell us no, but they never did. We were unstoppable and it gave us a rush of adrenaline that pushed us all the way. We were gods walking amongst mortals. But at the same time, we were just boys with messy hair and skateboards. That’s all we really ever were…
There were five of us back then: Tristan, Travis, Cole, Princeton, and me. We’d known each other since first grade and grew up like brothers, going to each other’s birthday parties, sleepovers, even road trips sometimes. We’d known each other for so long our lives were woven together into an intricate web. And then it all fell apart.
Friday nights normally consisted of staying out late and messing around the neighborhood. Sometimes we’d play dumb games like when we were back in elementary school. After a couple rounds of truth or dare, things started to get more exciting: Tristan had thrown a brick through someone’s window.We ran as fast and as far as we could.
Run run run run run.
Can’t catch my breath holy crap, truth or dare really does suck.
Run run run run run run.
Someone’s threatening to call the cops.
We didn’t mean to.
We didn’t mean to.
I was never much of a runner and then my stupid hair was getting in the way of my eyes.
“Run run run King!” Travis wheezed behind me.
“Where to?” I heaved, my lungs about to burst onto the concrete below us.
“The park the park the park, holy crap I can’t breathe,” Tristan yelled.
Didn’t mean to didn’t mean to didn’t mean to…
On the swing set at the park laughing like maniacs with red cheeks and sweaty foreheads.
Laughing about the brick and Tristan.
We finished the night with McDonald’s french fries and some Arizona. I got home around eleven, expecting to get yelled at for not making it before curfew. Then I remembered my dad was on some stupid business trip and my mom was probably out for some drinks with friends. Whatever.
Woke up at three am.
Tristan’s parents found out about the window thing.Kate Adams texted me and asked about Aubrey.
Something about some girl in my English class that had asked me to the Sadie’s dance.
They’re both too much.
They think just because they throw the craziest parties they matter.
Didn’t mean to.Didn’t mean for the brick to hit the window.
Didn’t mean to.
Mom came home drunk around five. I had to help her inside then and upstairs. This whole house is a freaking train wreck
“Kingsley, honey, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to drink so much. I didn’t mean to,” Mom said the next day.
Didn’t mean to, didn’t mean to, didn’t mean to.