Quartie Week Day 2- Quartie as Kids
Quinn crouched behind the biggest oak tree in the yard. It was only her third month of the second grade, and she’d already found a playmate. He lived right down her street, he loved seeking in hide and seek, and he called her pretty- was there anything more a girl could ask for in a friend? His name was Artie Abrams. But the only reason they’d become friends was because he’d been staying home. He wasn’t in her class, and wasn’t even in school- Artie had been in a car accident, and couldn’t walk. Finally, his mom was letting him play outside with Quinn, in his backyard.
The autumn wind blew through her hair as she crouched, the dirt scuffing up her boots and staining her white tights.
“Behind the big oak tree!” she heard from behind her. How did he know?
“How’d you find me?” she chuckled, rising from where she perched. She brushed the dirt off of her lap to find Artie sitting just as she’d left him, on the wooden box in his backyard.
He gave a shrug. “You always hide there. And I’m not gonna let you win anymore, woman.”
Quinn gave a laugh. “Woman!” she repeated through chuckles. “My mom says I’m not a woman yet.” she knelt down and picked up a leaf from the ground, dragging it across the dirt on her way over to Artie.
“Well you are one.” he nodded. “I mean, you’ve got long hair and you wear dresses and you smell pretty. Hot damn.”
Quinn looked him square in the blue eyes. “That’s a bad word.” she glared. But Artie just laughed. Quinn stomped her boots through the sticks to move to sit next to Artie on the box.
“You know what?” she asked, plopping down next to him. “It’s not that fun being the only one hiding in hide and seek.” she sighed. She felt Artie sigh next to her, and she instantly felt bad for saying that. But still, she kept prying… “Do you think you’ll ever walk again?” she asked, quietly…gently.
Artie shook his head. “The doctor says not soon. But maybe when I’m grown up.”
Quinn nodded as she placed a hand on his shoulder. Whenever this boy was down (especially this time since it was her fault), all she could do was touch his shoulder. She felt it said more than words. He seemed to be the only boy she was taken aback to talk down. “You’re smart.” She’d watched him do his math homework and he whizzed through subtraction like a sixth grader. “Maybe you’ll invent something to help your legs. And you’ll be rich and famous and have a pretty wife.”
Artie gave a chuckle. Quinn knew he felt better now. “You’re pretty, Quinn.” he commented.
She crinkled her nose. Of course, she loved when he called her pretty, but sometimes she had a hard time believing it. And, well, boys had cooties, as far as she was concerned. Accepting their compliments was like walking into a mouse trap. “I’m never gonna get married. Boys stink.”
“Even me?” Artie pouted, his bottom lip jutting out and his big blue eyes digging into her soul. Quinn wrapped an arm around his shoulder.
“Okay, not you.” she tickled his nose with the leaf in her hand, and he laughed, which made her laugh.
Artie was still smiling, and Quinn didn’t know why. All she knew was that he looked really happy, and though she couldn’t understand how a car accident could stop someone from walking, she knew that if it had happened to her, she definitely wouldn’t ever smile. Artie’s smile was really something that was amazing.
She tossed the leaf to the ground and rested her head on his shoulder. “I’m never getting married.” she repeated. But as much as she said it, she still didn’t believe it. She wanted to marry a prince. Or, at least, a boy who could become a prince somehow. Nice…funny…not the boys she saw at school who picked their noses and threw dirt.
“You should marry me.” Artie sighed. Quinn held her breath. Had she just been proposed to?
She gulped. “…Really?” she asked quietly. Artie nodded. Quinn twisted her mouth up, trying to decide what to say. He wasn’t like boys at school. He made her laugh and was so so nice to her and played hide-and-seek with her even when he couldn’t hide. “Fine. I’ll marry you. But I want your hat.”
Artie’s jaw dropped. “No!”
Quinn crossed her arms and held up her nose. “Fine. Then I’m not marrying you.” She didn’t know what she’d do if Artie called her bluff- she really did want to be married to him. Artie balled up his fists and gave a groan.
“Fine! Take the stupid hat.”
Before he could hand it to her, Quinn snatched it from his head and put it on over her ponytail.
“You’re not so pretty in my hat.” Artie teased, poking out his tongue. Quinn couldn’t decide whether or not to feel offended. She simply poked her tongue back out at him, before deciding to take her head’s place back on his shoulder. Artie could be a prince. And he had just crowned his princess.