Apparently she'd been right. The next afternoon when Sonja had plopped down next to him and asked what he knew about fractions, he'd told her that he wouldn't right the answers down, but that he would check to make sure her answers were right. In a huff, she'd switched seats and ignored him the rest of the ride. He wasn't surprised when she didn't get off at his stop with him.
He wished he knew the best way to say sorry to Michelle...
Michelle stopped him from rambling when she held his hand and said shyly, "Actually, I really, really liked it, Alvin. I've kinda had a crush on you for months now! Why do you think I was so upset you were hanging around Sonja?"
Alvin rubbed his hand on the back of his neck. "Wow. I didn't know. So. Do you, maybe, want to, you know, go out?"
Wow, Alvin thought. How easy was that!
Alvin looked perplexed. "What are you talking about? I have a 4.0 at Ms. Crumplebottom's Academy and am already taking college courses. What's standing in the way?"
Wyatt cleared his throat again, then took a deep breath. "Sex."
Alvin scowled. "Are you kidding me? You're going to give me the birds and bees talk? Believe me, I've read all the medical journals. I'm prepared."
"Well, be that as it may, I want some ground rules between us. You can date, but no girls after 11 pm and no unsupervised visits."
Alvin crossed his arms. "You're treating me like a little kid. I'm old enough now to make my own romantic decisions."
Wyatt slung his arm around Alvin's shoulder and squeezed. "Now that's the thing about being a teenager. Come on, let's split a pizza."
Wyatt laughed. "I bet she would've been! She'd probably have fixed me with that stare of hers and I would've run back over to the table so she wouldn't stay mad."
Alvin walked outside and stared at the pile of junk in the driveway. "What is this?" he asked.
"A project for us to work on. We can get this clunker looking nice, I bet. A little elbow grease & a little tinkering and it'll be good as new!"
Alvin looked doubtfully at the 'clunker'. "I don't know. I've never read about fixing cars..."
Wyatt heartily clapped Alvin on the back. "Well now, son, this is your first lesson that sometimes in life you don't read about a problem, you just dive in and learn from experience! You learn faster that way," Wyatt winked.
"Don't give up now, Alvin! You can do it," Wyatt said behind the sander.
Alvin felt like kicking the stupid car. If Wyatt would let him, he'd run inside and try to look up how to fix engines. But, Wyatt was adamant that Alvin figure this out for himself.
Alvin dropped down next to Wyatt and tried to do all the things he'd read about in the books. "No! You're not going to die, Wyatt! I've read about this! I can do this!" he said with tears streaming down his face.
Scared, Alvin ran to the phone and called the ambulance. Running back outside, Alvin searched for the smallest sign of life from Wyatt. There was none. The paramedics came and called the time of death. Alvin wasn't sure what they told him, he was in shock.
He was truly alone now.
Michelle sounded like she'd just been woken up. "Alvin. It's late. I don't think my dad will let me," she whispered. "I could get in a lot of trouble."
"I really need..." Alvin began to say, but was interrupted when Michelle's Dad picked up the extension and told her that it was too late for phone calls and to hang up.
"I will Dad, I'm sorry. Alvin, call me tomorrow," Michelle said.
Alvin leaned his head against the wall. Now what? he wondered hopelessly.
Dialing the number before he changed his mind, Alvin called the only other person he could think of.
Sonja gave Alvin a hug and rubbed his back. "That sucks, man. I'm surprised you called me. I was kind of a pain."
Alvin gave her a rueful smile. "Yeah, well, you came over when it mattered."
Sonja handed Alvin a beer. "Here. This will make you feel better."
A few hours later after another beer, Alvin was feeling calm and relaxed with Sonja just talking about how much school sucked right next to him. All of a sudden, he found Sonja in his lap with her kissing him. He wasn't sure how long they made out on the couch, but at one point Sonja frowned down at him and said she had to go. He absently wondered if maybe he wasn't kissing her right.
Feeling like an ass for cheating on Michelle, for failing Wyatt and for making out on Auntie Ethel's sacred couch, Alvin decided it was time to get the heck out of dodge. He called up Sim State University to make sure that all his scholarships were in order and then he requested an early check-in date due to a family emergency.