Gordin groaned as he rubbed his crusty eyelids. A nightmare about anti-rust paint had caused him to wake up. He pulled his head out of the pillow he was sleeping in. It was early in the morning, that’s all he knew. The young boy looked at the alarm clock on the dresser near his bed. In the dark room, the bright neon numbers 5:34 AM were like a lightning flash, and he rubbed his eyes again as they adjusted to the bright light. Six more minutes until he had to get up. That was surely enough time for a nice nap. Gordin rested his cranium on his soft, fluffy pillow. He was about to close his eyes, when suddenly his room shook with the bass of subwoofers. Gordin’ screamed in anger as the ceiling’s lights flashed on and off.
A rap beat was blasting from Alexa’s speakers, conveniently installed in every room of Gordin’s parent’s house. The subwoofers installed in the floor shook Gordin’s bed, and the alarm clock flickered as electricity surged into the speakers, which were pumping at max volume. From Gordin’s doorway, a short young boy with a fresh fade, a huge golden chain dragging from his neck, a backwards cap, huge shoes, and a button up shirt, was Bradle, Gordin’s younger brother. He was usually the orchestrating troublemaker in the household.
“🎵 Gordin! You’re a board in, in the ocean, drinking a potion, with emotion 🎵” Bradle rapped into a fake microphone, dancing along to the beat. Gordin seethed as he stuffed his face into his pillow.
“Leave me alone Bradle!” he hollered, not wanting to get out of bed before he was supposed to.
Bradle cackled, his gold chain clanking heavily on the floor, and started jumping on Gordin’s bed with his huge shoes on. They didn’t even fit.
“Wake up Gordin!” He shouted in a watery voice, bouncing up and down. Gordin shrieked like a woman, and Bradle laughed. After a few bounces, Gordin finally realized that Bradle wasn’t giving up until Gordin got out of bed. Gordin sighed and rolled out of bed. Bradle cackled. “It’s time for school, Gordin!”
Gordin rubbed his eyes, still sleepy, as he exited the school bus. Bradle was right behind him, a boom box strapped onto his shoulder, rapping along to a sick beat. The school bus driver, Shmitoe, shot a dirty look at Bradle, who had brought the boombox on the bus and was playing it the whole time.
In the school hallway of Flagler Middle School, Gordin shoved his backpack into his locker, and was about to slam it shut, when a dark shadow loomed over him. Gordin looked up, his eyes still bleary, as Joe Billyrooter, the school bully, waddled up to the locker. Joe was quite a figure. Having been held back from going to high school almost three times, Joe was 19 years old, had a waist larger than most recycling bins, and towered over even the teachers. Joe’s bright orange hair was usually a warning sign to most students to stay away, but Joe had snuck up on Gordin. Joe’s two lacky’s, Jim and Qrloeta, where stunted versions of their master, whom they followed like obedient dogs.
“So, Groaning, where’s my protection money?”
Joe slammed his fist on Gordin’s locker, which was locked, denting it and causing the locker to bang open. Gordin’s backpack and other personal belongings tumbled out onto the floor. Gordin’ sighed, and suddenly stepped forward, a face of pure anger replacing his sleepiness. For 2 years, Joe had been pushing Gordin along, but today, the protection money was not going to be passed on.
“Don’t you ever get tired of pretending to be an alpha of the school, Joe?” Gordin’s watery voice punctuated the usual hallway chatter, and everyone heading to class turned in his direction, listening eagerly. “Yesterday, you sent Jimmy Ibn Fulan to the nurse’s office just because you wanted to “learn science”. You put dish detergent in his lemonade, Joe!” Gordin was rambling now, and Joe stepped back in surprise, a look of remorse flashing across his face.
“How do you live with yourself, knowing that nobody here respects you, they just fear you. You really aren’t that different from the cafeteria meat loaf. You’re thick, hard, and everybody despises you”.
The hallway Ooooh-ed as Gordin delivered the last roast. Joe, who had taken at least 5 steps back, suddenly was enraged. “You shut your mouth, punk! I’ll show you whose the real man around here once I put my fist in your face!” Gordin, who was just the one giving Joe a lecture, now stepped back in fright. He thought words would take Joe down, like Gordin’s father had told him. “Words, not fists”, but it turned out Joe didn’t have one.
Joe rushed at Gordin, who just barely dodged his uppercut. Then Corrodin’ Gordin had enough. He reached out his hand, splayed, and yelled with pure resentment at Joe, who was swinging back another punch. Gordin’s powers of Corrosion came in handy sometimes. Joe fell back, as Gordin sent a wave of rust towards Joe. He tried turning back to run, but slipped as the shockwave hit him in the back. Joe shrieked with pain as the bright neon rust spread over his body. “Noo! Mommy! Help….” Joe’s screams faded as his body disintegrated into dust. Bradle passed by, boombox still blasting, rapping:
“🎵 Gordin! You’re so Corrodin! You could take down a bear with just a glare 🎵”.