There's a story behind every name. Dusk Halley was the product of two children of the hippie generation. Her mother always joked about the "nature" names that became standard, like Dawn or Amber, so when they had a little girl, they named her Dusk. Her dad used to tease her when she grumbled about it, and say that he had just barely been able to dissuade her mother from the name Haschisha.
Even though it was sometimes a pain having a unique name, Dusk was usually happy not to be a Ann or a Brittany. People never forgot her name.
Now, as she slammed her locker shut, she headed towards the room where the one person resided who never remembered who she was. Then again, there were very few things he did remember. He remembered all sorts of useless stuff, including things that had never happened, but the curriculum, the topic, and the map of the school always seemed to slip his mind.
Luckily for her, he was almost always late. A couple of minutes after her, and almost ten minutes after the bell, Mr. Wood closed the door behind him in an absent way.
"Good morning class. Are you all ready already? Well, yes, you are one of the nicer groups..."
His rambling continued. He was a short, stout man with thinning whitish hair that he insisted on dying a sickening yellow shade.
Dusk sighed and opened the cover of her Social Studies textbook.
They never actually got through more than a line or two in class, since
Mr. Wood always got into a lecture on every word and event in the text.
So she would read parts of the book to herself, relying on half an ear,
and Pete, her best friend, who was sitting next to her, to save her if
Mr. Wood decided to jump on her - which he at times did.
Fourth period, however, drifted by eventlessly, and when the bell rang, they shuffled out the door amidst the elbowing crowd of their hungry peers. They stopped by her locker, and she opened it to pull a bottle of Dr Pepper from her bag.
They balanced their trays towards a table, making a few cracks
about the Jell-O.
"So are you taping tonight?" Pete asked while she opened her Dr Pepper and tried to find the right page in her notebook.
"Yeah. I'm short about fifteen minutes though. That group, The... The Lover, had to pull out at the last minute. Their drummer tried to do a 360, right? He accidentally did a 270 vertically... He broke his wrist."
"Ow... So what are you going to do?"
"Dunno. Want to come join me for an editorial?"
When Dusk was almost fifteen, she'd started, for fun, a weekly
show on public access, called All Dusk Till Dawn. It quickly got an
audience. The teenagers loved a real show that invited the lunch lady,
local semi-talented bands, and had a "host" who was their age, who spoke
their language in
a sweet tongue laced with acid. A real life Wayne.
After about six or seven months, a TV network had caught on, and the last six months she'd been making the same show, but now with pay and 'real' guests. Sometimes Pete would come on, and they'd talk about 'current affairs', ragging those who deserved a ragging, spreading buzzes, and generally goofing around.
They managed to squeeze through another day of school, and when Dusk let go of the large door at the front of the school, she let out an exaggerated sigh.
"Your place or mine, babe?" she asked.
"Yours. My mom has entered another cooking phase. I swear, garlic is coming out of my ears. I hate theme cookbooks."
"Poor baby," she laughed. "Okay. I'll let you make pancakes if you ask nicely enough."
They got to the medium sized gray stone house where Dusk lived and took
the steps in two long strides. Dropping her bag in the foyer and pulling
her shoes off, Dusk crossed the livingroom into the kitchen and plopped
into a chair.
"I am so tired..." she moaned. "What have we got for tomorrow?"
"Well, there's Chem for Wednesday and Soc for Monday..."
"Who cares? Is there anything I have to do tonight?"
"Good. We can get started on that skit..."
"Yeah. Anybody exciting coming on anytime soon?"
"Not really. I have to talk to the mayor, the cast of some way-off-Broadway show the network's sponsoring, and a guy who thinks he's related to the tsar family of Russia."
"You should talk to the booker or whatever they call him."
"Well, he said he might have a surprise coming up. I dunno."
"Yeokay. So who's done anything lately?"