Challenge #3 - Defining Us

Requirements:

1) Three main characters involved in a love triangle.

2) Intelligent humor and pop culture references sprinkled throughout.

3) Don't specify exactly who eventually gets the girl/guy.

4) The two rivals are not bitter enemies.

No:

- physical contact between anyone in the love triangle. At all.

- mentions of marriage.

- wayward best friends with all the answers.

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Pretty In Pink Causes Identity Crisis

By Limera

1805 words in total.

I

Well, I do suppose that sometimes, just sometimes, she can get on my nerves. I mean, yeah. I'm in love with her and everything but jeez. Must she be so cryptic about everything? Then again, I really shouldn't blame her because every time she comes close to saying something (because at this point even a rejection would be good, I'm sick of hanging around for her), he has to turn up. I have nothing against him, Eric, I mean, except her. We weren't ever really best friends but he's a pretty cool guy. He'd be cooler if he left my crush alone, but you can't have everything. So it's pretty much boiled down to a competition, the kind Heidi and I always have, to test who will submit the newspaper article in first, edited. Except between Eric and I, it's about who will get her first. It's actually sort of fun. Only it's annoying when he saunters in and interrupts us.

I suppose that is why I am going to her locker. She will definitely be there, because I know she had AP Chemistry last period. And I have not memorized her schedule, she told me when we went to get our books from our lockers before the class. Ironically, her locker is right next to mine. Take that, Eric Callahan!

"So", I asked her, pulling out my Creative Writing notebook, "Which class do you have right now?"

She pushed back her messy hair and said, "Physics. Oh gosh, we're going through rubbish I did back in the eighth grade!"

"Like?" I wanted to know. I hadn't taken any science classes this year, just my writing classes and my political science and history as well as civics and of course, English Advanced Grammar, a special course the school offered.

"You know", she said, rolling her eyes and banging the locker shut. "Reflection and Refraction of light and God knows that I know electricity and magnetism by heart, yet just cannot let me sleep."

I grinned. "Yeah, well, better not do that, he'll think you're on drugs, like Lindsay Lohan. It's an easy mistake to make, what with your red hair." I grabbed my pencil case, as a blow landed on my ear, and the creative writing book and pulled out my assignment and I said, "So, can we do a Johnny Depp and Vanessa Paradis?"

She looked bored and deadpanned, "Only if we can make the record of the shortest date ever."

I sighed and laughed, "No one can really beat Britney Spears, so why bother?"

She looked interested and chuckled while saying, "True, but she handles rejection quite harshly doesn't she?"

I couldn't understand that statement, Women. "Speaking of harsh rejections, my heart is in utter pain right now! Don't Phunk With My Heart, got it?"

She said, "Well, No, No, No, No, Baby, No, No, No, No, Don't Lie", she hummed.

Well, women and their Black Eyed Peas fetish. Hypocritical, didn't I say Don't Phunk With My Heart? I shouldered my bag and slipped the books and papers into it and turned to leave saying, "Gotta go, Creative Writing."

She looked mildly disappointed, but I didn't let myself be flattered. "Oh well", she said, quoting from Bowling for Soup, "High School Never Ends."

I sang along, "Four years, You think for sure, That's all you've got to endure, The total dicks, the stuck-up chicks, so superficial, so immature, ah, Bowling for Soup!"

We simultaneously grinned and she said, "Come on, let's go to class", since we were headed in the same direction. Eric miraculously (not) popped up from somewhere, spinning a basketball on his index finger. I figured he just had basketball practice because he was still in his school team jersey. I wanted to ask how the match went, but apparently he had different ideas. Like flirting with the girl next to me. "So, my dear lady", he proclaimed with an outstretched hand, "Tony Parker and Eva Longoria?"

"Only if we do a K-Fed and Britney Spears", she said, scowling.

"But, K-Fed and Britney had kids! Are you suggesting something?" Eric asked, waggling his eyebrows. Noticing me, he went, "Hey, Kieran!" and we did the whole 'Hey' guy nod. It was protocol. I didn't hate the guy, come on!

She glared at me and said, "Eric, I'll see you later. Bye." and then dragged me off. Well, not like she grabbed my hand (I wish) but she glared at me in that magnetic way and like, demanded I go with her. Which I did, with no hesitance. Until I hit the water fountain on my way.

I rubbed my sore elbow and in an annoyed tone, I said, "Hey! What is your deal, I was going to ask him how the match was!"

"You", she disbelievingly asked me, "Like him?"

"Well", I defensively said, "Yeah! He's a great guy, once you get to know him!"

"Thank God! Since you guys, well, have this issue about asking me out, I figured you'd be uncomfortable around him". Well. Did she have a knack of not beating around the bush. Way to boost a guy's ego.

"Yeah, well, we don't let that get in between us. Anyway", I awkwardly motioned to my class. "I have to run, Mr. Morton isn't exactly I'm-A-Candy-Giving-Santa Claus. Bye, Ari!" I waved and disappeared within my class, missing the green eyes of a certain basketball player behind the water fountain.

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I was at my locker after the last school bell rang, signaling freedom for the rest of the day, to get through all my assignments, since we didn't have a newspaper meeting today. They had announced that there was just a week to the Winter Dance and I'd yet to finalize a possible date. I mean, I'd definitely ask Arielle, but she'd turn me down anyway. The dance had been announced three weeks ago and she still didn't show a sign of even wanting a date for it so I assumed she'd already gotten one.

Maybe I could ask Jean Lackey from the newspaper office. She was smart and pretty, so what if I didn't have a crush on her? At least I wouldn't be flying solo: Jean was a pretty fun girl to hang out with. She just got cranky when she had to submit an article within a day. Our editor was quite a slave driver, come to think of it. Word limit, double spaced, hyphenated words are counted as just one and no humor unless she asks for it. I'm all for women power, but jeez, lay off it for a while, why don't you?

That's when Ari came up to the locker and deposited her books and picked up a few others. There was a bench directly in front of our lockers and she dropped into it. I spun the dial back and asked her if she wanted a ride.

Naturally, she said she didn't want one. Women and their not accepting rides when its freaking freezing November. She still sat there. I felt uncomfortable and I asked her, "Hey. Anything wrong?"

She remained silent. Okay, I told myself. Think of something, you nut!

"Okay. I know this is sort of late notice, but would you like to do a Andie and Blane for the Winter Dance?"

She looked kind of stunned by my Pretty in Pink reference. "You", she asked, sort of like she was being strangled, "Don't have a date yet?"

I felt like someone had delivered a blow to my stomach. Here I was, waiting for her, and she thought I'd gotten a date so she agreed to go with Eric after all?

"Well, no. I wanted to ask you, but I figured that Eric had already", I shrugged, "You know. And you accepted."

"Heck no!" she burst out. "Well, I would have gone with him, but well, I went with him to Spring Fling last year and well. Basketball. It's a boring topic to discuss when you're dancing."

"Oh. So whom are you going with? I'll just go and find Jean, maybe she'll go with me", I said, looking around the hallway for one of her friends.

Her shoulders slumped and she mumbled, "I'm not going with anyone."

"Oh. So you don't want to go with me, either." This came out quite bitterly, I noticed, but I was too shocked to really say anything else.

"Who said that?" she demanded. Well, she looked sort of red in the face. I think she was angry. Maybe the very idea of going with me repulsed her. Uh oh. This is where I back off. I have an older sister at home, and she gets bad enough on Midol, women tantrums are too much for a guy like me to handle.

I was shell-shocked and I playfully asked, "Isn't that Troy and Gabriella clique violation?" High School Musical, I think my sister has over-loaded me with chick flicks.

She threw her head back and laughed. After recovering form her spasms she asked me, "Exactly how many chick-flicks have you watched?"

"Oh tons", I said shrugging. "I have an older sister who has made me watch A Walk To Remember instead of Matrix, so yeah."

"Okay", she said, her eyes twinkling, "What if I told you that I wanted to go to the dance with you?"

I grinned, with my heart almost exploding out of my chest, "I'd say: I'm crazy about you."

She continued my Pretty In Pink tagline, "I'm crazy about you", which was a spoof off the 'She's crazy about him' part of it. This, I decided, was all Lorraine's fault. Now I look like a wuss who can only quote Pretty in Pink. But still, she liked it!

Then a gruff voice came from the background. "And, heck, Arielle, you going with him is just plain crazy."

I think my friendship with Eric Callahan just ended. But he knows the Pretty in Pink tagline too! The thing that made my day was Arielle scowling at him. Until Eric held out two tickets to the dance. "My lady?"

Eric then looked at me and said, "So, been reading up on those chick flicks to impress Ari? The thing is, Kieran, you're just looking like a fool. Macho rules."

I spluttered while Ari softly asked me, "So you've just been watching those movies for me?"

I looked scared and said, "No, Lorraine made me. You know. Sisters." And I cracked a feeble grin.

Arielle glared at me and at Eric before stalking out. I did hear her exclaim, "Guys are such assholes!"

When I didn't even do anything. Both Eric and I shrugged before I angrily said, "I was going to go with her! Why the heck did you ruin it?"

Eric shrugged. "Hey", he said, "Better neither of us than you."

And though that statement was absolute CRAP, I could still somehow identify with the feeling. I suddenly felt like a rejected Molly Ringwald. Damn it. I am a guy, not a girl. Maybe I'll develop identity crisis now.

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(A/N: Well, my SKoW challenge response! Please, please vote for it! Thank you, and do review! Any comments and criticism will be very appreciated! And do check out my other works!)