Calculus | Quick Piece

It was noon and everyone was outside. On the other hand, Evan remained inside doing his calculus homework. A couple hours ago, his roommate asked him to play Frisbee, but he declined. He had a lot of problems to get through. All he wanted to do was to finish his work and get outside, but at this pace and with the work he had, it wasn’t going to happen. He stared at his desk and sighed, “What good is this if I can’t even get a break?” All he saw were numbers, swirling and spiraling around his eyes. The numbers didn’t make sense anymore and for the first time ever it didn’t bother him. He stood up and stretched just as his roommate got back. “Hey you wouldn’t believe it, Evan. I met this girl while playing Frisbee with everyone and I think she likes me.” he rambled off while flinging his shoes into the corner of the room. Evan laughed and sat back down at his desk, cracking his fingers and picking back up his pencil. “What? Her name’s Marcie and she’s really cute.” his roommate continued, staring at the ceiling while bouncing a ball. Evan froze. He knew that name. That name sounded very familiar. It was a name he had whispered countless times to himself as he thought of her blond locks. It was a name he carefully said in the silent room just to try out the waters. Marcie was in Evan’s Calc class and he sat behind her, only the scratching of his pencil making his presence known. Marcie always found a way into his dreams and those were the times when he was the happiest. His roommate paused in his delusional state of rambling and said, “Hey, you listening? “ Evan nodded and grunted. Of course he was listening. He was listening how Marcie’s name sounded foreign in Keenan’s mouth and it made his skin crawl. Keenan broke the silence again and said, “You know, if you listened to me and actually came with me this morning, then you would’ve met her. Who knows, she could’ve been yours by now.” And for the second time within the past ten minutes, Evan froze in his tracks. It was just like calculus. There were two sides to everything, right and wrong. This time, he chose the wrong side and his roommate was currently sitting in it. He whipped his chair around and shouted, “She’s mine! Don’t touch her! I knew her first, so I should have her!” The smile on Keenan’s face dropped and transformed into a scowl. “What the fuck did you say?” Evan stood up and pushed his chair away. “I said, that Marcie is mine! We’re better suited together anyways! She’s also an engineering major and it would be pretty embarrassing she’s smarter than your dumb ass!” Keenan lunged at Evan, shoving him into the wall. There was a loud thud when his head smacked violently into the wall, causing a small dent. Keenan started shouting while slapping Evan in the face, “It’s not my fault that you were too busy doing your fucking homework! If you already knew her being the genius you are, then you should’ve gone after her!” Evan laid still, his head throbbing and face turning numb. Keenan’s words started to register into his head. It was all his fault. What good was this if nothing was happening? Keenan stopped for a moment, wiping his forehead and looked around, hoping that an RA didn’t burst into the room from the noise. “She’s all yours. Go get her.” Evan said, breaking the silence. Keenan reeled back and stammered, “That’s it? None of that analytical crap? None of the deductions? You’re just going to give her to me?” His voice rose up in a screech and he punched Evan in the nose. A stream of deep red blood started gushing down his face, but Evan remained still. He stood up and tried to wipe away the flow. Through his pinched nose he said, “Yeah, that’s it. You can have her. I was wrong.” Keenan started backing away from Evan shaking his head. “No, you can’t do this. What are you? It can’t be that simple like a math problem!” Evan smiled, his teeth stained red and said, “I’m Evan, an aspiring engineer. I think my friend, Keenan should get the girl.” He sat down and grabbed a couple of tissues. “I may be extremely analytical and good with calc or whatever, but you’re the man. I can only solve problems on paper. What good is this all if I can’t even do what I want?” he said his eyes starting to brim with tears. Keenan clenched and relaxed his fist before bursting out of the room, his anguished sobs echoing through the hall. Evan sat down on the cold floor let the tears fall. A single thought surfaced in his head and he whispered, “I’ve failed for the first time.”


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