Category Linkin Park

Hear Me Now by TrashFoot

Part 1

Being deaf in a hearing world doesn’t always provide easy access to a lot of things, particularly friends. Chester was appreciative though, when some of the kids back in his old school in Arizona dedicated time to learning American Sign Language. When his parents divorced and Chester started going out with friends and getting tattoos from God knows where— despite Chester’s being underage to get one without parental consent— he wanted to just get a rise out of his father. He must’ve gone too far with it, when dear old dad shipped him off to live with his mother in California for halfway through his junior year of high school. Chester didn’t complain too much, though. It was always difficult communicating with his father, since he didn’t know much sign language. He had it in his head that lip reading was the better option, but he was too stubborn to understand that even the best lip readers get about 30% of what people are saying.

The remainder of his junior year sucked, to say the least. A new school with no friends and having a hard time communicating with new teachers, even with the help of a translator, wasn’t easy. He was thankful for the summer’s arrival. No more translations, no more homework, no more solitude in the cafeteria. Now there was just solitude at home, until his mother and himself found something to sign about. He was itching to go out and do something, but without friends it’s hard to do that.

Until one day his mom took him on a trip to the community pool.

He wasn’t all that thrilled because the pool meant he had to expose his too-lean body, and he was even less thrilled to see a familiar group of boys— obviously old friends— at the other end of the lounge chairs. He saw the curly haired one point him out and begin talking to his Asian friend and other brunette-haired friend with a close-shaved haircut, and his heart sank. His heart sank even deeper when he watched them make odd hand gestures; he may have been deaf but he wasn’t dumb. They were making fun of him. He signed to his mom that he wanted to go home.

“We just got here!” She complained with a pout on her face.

“There’s people from my school here though—” Chester signed with a look of concern towards the group of boys.

“That’s good, isn’t it? You can go and play with them!”

“No, we don’t play—” Suddenly, his mother started pulling money out of her purse, and Chester scrunched his face in confusion. “What are you doing?”

“Here’s some money, go to the snack stand and buy them some ice cream! You can’t go wrong with ice cream!” Chester sighed. He wanted to explain to his mother that that’s not how making friends in high school works, especially as a senior— well, almost a senior. But he knew his mother wouldn’t hear it, and would continue treating this like it was an elementary school play date. He took the money, and just before regaining his mother’s attention so he could get some help ordering as she closed her eyes to get back to sunbathing, he looked back down the line of lounge chairs at the group of boys. They appeared to be ready to leave, continuing a few odd gestures here and there before falling into playful shoving, continuing their laughter. In a moment stolen from a movie, the curly haired one caught his eye, looking at Chester with a beautiful smile on his face as he grabbed his bag. A dumbfounded smile unexpectedly spread on Chester’s lips as a feeling fluttered through his chest. He couldn’t keep his eyes off them as they walked past, the curly haired one giving a small wave. Chester felt a few small taps on his forearm.

“Are you feeling okay?” His mother asked. Chester shuddered and quickly nodded yes.

“Will you order food for me?”


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