Chapter 19, Olive Branches

Friday, September 11 – Davi Crisostomo

I give an audible sigh of relief when I see that Zane and Thaddeus skipped again. I mean, it’s terrible that they skipped, but between Zane running out the door every two seconds, Thaddeus questioning every word that comes out of my mouth, and the threat of D.K. breaking another limb… I just need a breather. 

This must be the most stressful class I’ve taught since that class of hyperactive kindergarteners. Maybe kids really are getting worse—social media, violent video games and bad TV are scrambling their brains. 

Or maybe I’m just getting old. My bald spot gets bigger every day. Soon I’ll be bald, like Dad or Uncle Bert. But I should be paying attention to my lesson, not my bald spot. Then again, I’ve taught it so many times that I could probably teach in my sleep.

Focus Davi.

“Really? Nobody can tell me what a cell is? You should have learned this in grade six.”

Seven blank stares.

I sigh, then open my mouth to tell another joke but the bell rings.

“I guess we’ll have to cover it next class. Alright, head to the changerooms for gy…”

My blood freezes, and it takes all my strength to creak my head in D.K.’s direction. She’s grinning, and we both know what the other’s thinking.

“…for gym class,” I finish. “Um, could I see you after class D.K.?”

D.K. nods and walks over as the other students leave the room.

I twiddle my thumbs nervously. “D.K. , I know that you can get…excited at times. And I was just wondering if…”

“Don’t worry about it Davi,” the girl assures me, sort of mockingly. “Just take a deep breath. Breathe in….and breathe out. Think: ‘I can teach this ninth grade gym class.’” 

“Yeah yeah, very funny. I’ve taught gym before. I’ve just never taught Dee-Kay Laurier gym before. You know, you are injured. How about you sit this first class out?”

D.K. smirks. “You’re kidding, right?”

I shrug and chuckle. “It was worth a shot. But that’s not what I really wanted to talk about.”

We both look at our shoes at the same time, knowing where the conversation is headed. We’re like-minded people, the two of us.

“I talked to your mother a few days ago. We, uh, talked about a lot of stuff and I…uh…” I rubbed the back of my neck. Over ten years experience and the conversations never got any easier.

“Well she thinks you’re doing fine, other than the whole breaking your arm thing.” I chuckle. 

D.K. droops her head, and I’ve taught her enough math classes to know when she’s tuning me out.

“Well, I know firsthand how religious differences can cause friction in a family. It’s not fun. I was just wondering how you’re doing.”

D.K looks up. She smirks, but not as confidently as usual. “Oh, me? I’m fine, I’m good.”

“And, uh, the bungee-jumping out your bedroom window. That didn’t have anything to do with—”

D.K. laughs. “Nah, it’s just one of those crazy D.K. things, you know. That’s what happens when you grow up with brothers, am I right? Anyway, good talk Mr. C. I’d better get to gym.”

“Yeah…good talk.”

I smile, but on the inside my stomach’s tying knots. I crossed a line, pushed too fast, pried too deep. She won’t open up to me for months.

But her refusal to open up confirms my fears. D.K. isn’t taking it well. And there’s nothing I can do about it—getting further involved might just make things worse. All I can do for the time-being is pray.

3 thoughts on “Chapter 19, Olive Branches”

  1. Yeah, more D.K! But at the same time, this chapter is kind of relatable to me. Along with a lot of other things, I know just how D.K feels….

    Can’t wait to see the next chapter!🙂

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Chapter 19, Olive Branches

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