Skinny Punk Genius Saves Fat Kid
"Lucky for you I was at that station," Curt says as he watches me eat. "I mean, since I saved your life and all." His eyes track each bite I take, but when I offer him my fries he won't take any.
"I wasn't going to jump," I say, holding a french fry in the air. I'm lying, but only halfway.
"Were," he says as if there's no argument. "I was watching you for, like, an hour. That rude, twirpy kid left, then three trains passed and you never looked up from the tracks. Then the insane laughter and I knew you'd lost it. I said to myself, Curt, you save this kid's life and he will surely buy you lunch."
"I wasn't going to jump," I say again with my best resolute look. I was just thinking. Just thinking."
Curt considers this at length.
"How come?" he finally asks.
I want to give him the you-moron look the kids at school have perfected. Maybe say something sarcastic like, "Use your imagination." I want to say, "Open your eyes. I'm a fucking three-hundred-pound teenager living in the most unforgiving city on earth. I'm ugly and dumb and I make stupid noises when I breathe. I annoy and bewilder my only living parent, mortify my little brother, and have no friends."
Copyright © 2004 by K. L. Going. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.