Remembering Scott

by Jess Speake

Positioned neatly on the once blank wall (after great attempts by the curator) was my contribution to the town's gallery competition. A painting; colourful' according to Gran. It's great!' Mum commented with a bit too much enthusiasm. However, subconsciously I asked myself one question. What would have Scott thought?'

Scott was my best mate. My sole companion. He was the person responsible for ushering me as far away from the bitches as I soon discovered who were once my friends; thanks to his looks and charm Ok, I admit! He was fit; bulging biceps, a well-kept tan. One heck of an arse. Yet, I felt too privileged by the fact that I was the female friend of the most attractive, gorgeous guy in Year Ten possibly in the whole school, in fact to ask him out! I was so close to though but I coughed up my words. Literally! Blame that on the force-fed fennel caper that one of the bitches gave to me before confronting Scott, her knowing all too well that my face would explode into a red tomato and the coughing frenzy would beginAll of that happened humiliatingly in front of Scott.

From then on, our friendship grew stronger and stronger. Eventually, I tossed the girls aside and said Ding dong!' to Scott. It was the hugs that did it. He would wrap his arms tenderly around me and snuggle me up like the large, lush teddy bear best friend that every child had. Sometimes, he would rest his head on my shoulder comfortingly and, occasionally, gave me a sweet kiss on the cheek. His embrace always triggered a strong scent of aftershave it smelt a bit like peppermint. That was our personal greeting and farewell gesture. I had no other relationship that could compare to ours. Not even with my parents.

Wandering in like God's gift was Mr Gomez; Scott's father. His gray hair was combed exquisitely back to show his clean, stubble-less face. He smiled arrogantly at passers-by, aiming to be the centre of attention (as usual). His heeled boot clogged loudly on the linoleum floor, making his presence known to everyone that he walked into his trap.

\"Twat,\" I mumbled to myself as I continued to gaze at the picture.

I was never amused by Mr Gomez's snide remarks towards Scott. He claimed they were just harmless jokes. Although, I never saw Scott laughing them off. His response was simply just a shrug. Their relationship always seemed to baffle me; Mr Gomez would brag about his perfect son' the one minute then taunt him the next. He never seemed to express any concern for Scott. Whenever his son attempted to talk about his day, Mr Gomez would immediately butt in and boast endlessly about his accolades. If Scott had a great result in a Physics test, Mr Gomez would ignorantly hide his face behind the large newspaper pages. Many people doubted Mr Gomez's parental influence on his only son. Very little actually mustered the courage to shame him publically. After all, Mr Gomez was a dazzling, astound individual' according to some of his arselicking employees, desperate for a bit of his buck.

Scott always strived to prevent his father's wealth and esteem from affecting him. Although he could afford the smartest branded clothes from the capital's swankiest stores, he chose the basics; a white tank top, a pair of overworn jeans and matching trainers was his signature look. Beneficial for me and the rest of the world , of course, when he would flash his biceps out in the open regardless of the weather conditions. Playfully, he would balance himself on top of an old foundation base, place his hands on his hips and pose as a macho vigilante.

He was definitely a hero in my eyesminus the colour-coordinating eye mask and the Spanx pants. He would advise me about boys, fashion, music, pretty much anything really like a continuous spree of successful '21 Questions' rounds.

Twenty one questions popped randomly inside my head as I studied the painting closely. Why is there a speck of green there?', What's up with that section?', How the hell does that face look human?'. I caught Mr Gomez's profile from the corner of my eye. Why haven't I smashed that bastard up yet?' I enquired to myself thoughtfully. Why?'

\"Ah, Katie isn't it?\" Mr Gomez broke the silence. I kept my mouth zipped shut. He was the last person I wished to speak to. \"You know, it is rude not to answer back Katie. Didn't your father teach you manners?\" Huh! Looked at yourself recently? \"The least you could do is say Hello' surely.\"

\"SSH!\" An angry response from a fellow viewer in the gallery. She was a senior citizen. Judged by her cashmere cardigan and bony body, I guessed her age was about seventy-ish. Whatever age she was, her wrinkled face looked like as if she had absorbed some of the crimson from her tartan trouser suit. She nearly began to wave her cane angrily at Mr Gomez, grunting softly under her breath. This disturbed Mr Gomez and, as a result, he waltzed further down the corridor to examine other pieces.

I actually felt like shaking the lady's hand gratefully. I mean, who would have that that arse gave birth to Scott? Who?' I repeated to myself, trying to search for the answer through the painting like excavating a cave. Who?'

\"I must say. That's a marvellous piece there,\" a soft voice spoke into my ear. The accent was familiar had a slight twang to it. My eyes lit up with delight as I swiftly turned around to face the person, praying that somehow it was Scott. \"What inspired it, may I ask?\" Nonot Scott.

Although she had a polite manner similar to Scott, I was questioned by a young, smartly dressed tour guide. Strands of her brunnette polka fringe hung around her eye-level, causing only spots of her brown irises to be seen. With realisation, I turned back solemnly to face the artwork.

\"A friend inspired it,\" I responded.

\"Aw , what's their name?\" She cooed lightly, grinning happily at me.

\"Scott.\"

\"Aw, is that him there?\" She pointed at the previously ambiguous face on the portrait.

\"Yeah, it is,\" I suddenly thought aloud as if I just received an epiphany.

\"Has he seen this?\"

I froze for a moment. A sharp pain choked my words back like if someone shoved a cork carelessly down my throat. I shook my head gently.

\"Aw, why not?\"

I turned around once again towards the tour guide and gulped before I answered...\"He died.\"

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