Everything is okay in the end and if it's not okay, it's not the end.

Being the King of East High, Troy Bolton is the captain of the Varsity Wildcats, and is idolized by everyone around him. He is the boyfriend of Gabriella Montez. Troy is also one of the sweetest and most gentle guys on campus. He is the only child to Jack and Lucille Bolton.

The school considers Troy their King and the most popular guy for three reasons: 1) He is incredibly hot, 2) He is the best basketball player the school ever saw, and 3) The most important is that he is incredibly selfless. He doesn’t think he deserves the recognition he gets, and he is always looking out for others. He never tolerates any type of bullying and always calls bullies out on it when he knows it is happening, even if the entire student body is watching. He wouldn't change his life for anything; his values mean a lot to him, and the school as a whole made him popular. It's just that over the past years he had gotten the reputation of being the basketball guy — the jock — the one everyone respected and adored. Troy is sick of being that guy but there is nothing he could do about it, everyone expects him to be a certain way and it's too late to do anything to change it.

Troy rules East High through charisma and general awesomeness rather than fear and manipulation. To the students of East High, Troy is the definition of goodness and heroism, and in turn, they constantly praise Troy and treat him with the utmost admiration and respect. Troy and his relationship with social outcasts transcends the school. He has nothing to gain from helping people with their social and love life. Troy is aware he's popular at East High but he never ever abuses his status to manipulate it to his advantage; definitely not in the same way that his basketball team, does. Troy is the type of popular jock who respects and talks to everyone, making others around him feel better about themselves.

Troy was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico on October 18, 2000. His parents were glad to have them and as a small baby he had gotten his first little basketball which he always held with him. He grew up to be an active toddler and was always playing outside with the other kids in the neighboorhood. At pre-school, he met Chad Danforth and they quickly became friends and today are still best friends, or like they say brothers to each other. When he was growing up, he became more active and started to play some sports like basketball and some baseball too once and a while, but he liked basketball more. He joined the basketball team in Elementary school and he was quite good at it but most important he found it fun and liked to play it. Chad, his best friend also joined the team and they and the rest of the team became good friends as they knew they could count on each other. Indecisive, sure, but unless he’s outright backed against the wall, he will not give up on anything, no matter how hard it gets. Overall, his diligence is Troy's greatest virtue, enabling him to learn new skills quickly simply because he won’t give up until he masters them. He manages to teach himself how to be a better role-model for others, and learns how child psychology works.

As the years passed by and High school came closer, they still were friends and the whole team went to East High along with a lot of others from their former school. When they were kids, Troy was rather quiet and Chad, who has always been loud and confident, was the one to get him out of his shell, while Troy has always kept Chad’s head in the game (pun intended) when he was being too brash. Even though Troy is the most popular and the hottest boy in school, he's also the nicest and kindest guy you’ll ever meet. He is the boldest and the most outspoken of the characters, often not afraid to say what he really thinks of a person. Troy is the envy of the student body, with guys wanting to be him, and girls wanting to be with him. There may have even been guys who wanted to be with him as well. Troy discovers he loves to sing, but is afraid to admit it to his friends. Troy is able to sing from his heart in a naïve yet convincing manner. Being the all-around lovable and charming jock, woe to anyone who trifles with him, he cares about people's lives and wants to help them. His independence nevertheless makes him a beloved and respected figure to others. Now Troy's popularity has nothing to do with the fact he is the captain of the Wildcats or even being the hottest boy in East High. Troy's popular because he is also part of a program that prevents bullying and keeps students at East High safe from all physical and mental bullying. You can bet that they have pulled a lot of pranks like the one they pulled on Jimmie Zara and Donny Dion.

Troy is always involved in the middle of all the drama and he's most certainly not afraid to take action either. As his experience grows throughout Season 2 he becomes a much better fighter to the point that he’s presently one of the best in all of Albuquerque. Troy is angst-ridden and bogged down with constant insecurities. In addition to his insecurities, he's also surrounded by constant drama and the toll of bad things happening to him, his friends and family. Despite the fact that Troy is a Big Man on Campus who is also a Chick Magnet, he can also be very awkward but endearing, especially when it comes to his interactions with Gabriella.

Physical Appearance Edit

I try and look my best... Always... I really admire the stars back in the day when it really meant a lot to go to red carpets and premieres and people really took extra pride in their clothes, you know? Frank Sinatra and all those guys were always dressed to the nines. I think that was very classy.

Described as "the hottest boy at East High", Troy Bolton has cerulean or cabot blue eyes, floppy medium lengthened brown chestnut-colored hair, high cheekbones, a strong jawline, perfect eyebrows, a straight nose and full lips. He has a very athletic body and the height to match. Weighing in around a 140-pounds of pure body muscle. He is a tall boy, standing at 5'8" tall. His skin is golden with a tan complexion which sums up his outgoing personality, and speaks about how much he enjoys being outside. Hitting the gym every other day, along with playing basketball constantly, he has nicely defined muscles. However, throughout the second season and beyond, his body is more defined and becomes more muscular as he develops and his hair is stylishly spiked. 

Troy doesn’t have any preferred type of clothing. Basically he’ll wear anything that is in style and considered to be cool and the hottest fashion. He is mostly seen in the latest fashion of wearing a shirt that seems too small so when he stretches, a nice view of his abs are shown. Of course the pants that hangs loosely around his waist revealing the tops of either his boxers or briefs. He doesn’t mind wearing clothing that is tight on him either, he does enjoy showing off his hard earned muscles. He does wear occasional slightly baggy shirts as well.

Personality and Traits Edit

It's hard to believe how much being a friend really means to someone. Most people take it for granted, like they do a lot of things. To a person who doesn't have any though, one friend can mean the world. Even a simple smile or hello can change a person's day.

The King of East High, the star of the Wildcats — the guy everyone looks up to — with the perfect girlfriend, Gabriella Montez, the perfect childhood best friend, Chad Danforth, and nearly every teacher's favorite student (with the exception, somewhat, of Miss Darbus), Troy Bolton is the friendliest and kindest guy to ever walk the halls of East High. He is arguably the only selfless, and even self-sacrificing character in the series. He’s the moral center of the group, a jock with a heart of gold, a die-hard romantic who doesn’t care what your hobbies are, he'll support you regardless, as long as it makes you happy. He's a conflicted cinnamon roll who is truly too good and too pure for the universe he was created for, and he and his dynamic, multi-faceted character and relatability deserves infinitely better. Troy has love and respect for everyone and has no problem stepping out of his social circle to fraternize with others. He is pretty much everyone's best friend, and you could always count and depend on him. He is excessively trustworthy and beloved all throughout East High. Troy has a big heart, and although he tends to keep his emotions under control — and even under wraps — a majority of the time, he is capable of expressing his true feelings in a genuine, powerful light. Fun-loving, friendly, respectful, polite, chivalrous, and a little naïve, Troy also has a fascination for the aquatic life and loves nothing better than just being able to sit in an aquarium, watching as all of the sea's creatures swam and scurried around in the tanks. It gives him a sense of solitude and being just one of millions of God's creatures, a sense of peace when the outside noise became too much.


Troy's views on love.

Troy retains a genial demeanor towards everyone. He also has high hopes on helping to others in need. His vibrant personality makes it easy for him to interact and connect with others. Troy simply strives to be a good role-model for others. He helps others, he’s generous. He has his purpose, but he knows that life isn’t merely about accomplishments, but about leaving a legacy. That legacy is how he made others feel, and how he helps others accomplish their dreams. Troy has a "love of humanity" concept of helping one's community whenever possible. He goes out of his way to help the poor, downtrodden, sick or elderly. This is most often achieved through his financial philanthropy, giving money to worthy causes, but may be done through volunteer work as well. Troy is the one who wants to look out for others safety from dangers he doesn't even know about. His most prominent characteristic is his sense of teamwork and “togetherness”. However, underneath his popular exterior, no one seems to notice how hard Troy is pushing himself to be a "perfect" image.

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Troy's affable personality.

Troy is selfless, constantly putting his safety at risk for the sake of those he cares about. This proves his kindness and pleasant aura that makes him a beloved figure. Since childhood, he has harbored a dream to become an optimist, solely for the opportunity to help those in need and make the world a better place. He cares deeply for the well-being of others, and would be more than happy to offer a helping hand to them. Troy selflessly goes above and beyond ordinary expectations to help someone out or even just to cheer them up. He often remains relatively calm in perilous situations, or gives words of encouragement during the darkest hours. He is well-known for his kindness and optimism — both of which act as his greatest strengths, as they've guided him safely through the various hardships faced throughout the series. Troy is most interested in people — and not necessarily the kind of people you would normally expect. We wouldn't say Troy is some wide-eyed, naïve optimist — he just seems able to see the good and the beauty in unlikely places. In short, he definitely likes to watch and analyze people. Another way we know Troy loves people (and is good with them): he does his best to help them, even when it screws up his own life. Troy sees goodness in everyone to a fault, but through it all he’s a good person with a huge heart and a fatherly soul. Troy is a serious gentleman who cares about other people and how they should be treated.

Troy Bolton is quite the charmer. He has the confidence, good-looks, and quick wit to back it all up, too. He clearly wins at boyish charm, a somewhat elusive quality best marked by impish smiles and genuine sweetness. He exudes this swoon-worthy trait, and sometimes it’s almost too much for people to handle. As a charmer, Troy can sweet-talk literally anyone. He wins at the boyish charm thing because he just wears his feelings on his sleeve. He can’t hide looks like this — they’re perfectly genuine and perfectly adorable. Troy is probably one of the most charismatic characters in the show.

Troy always tries to do the right thing, he'd never hurt another soul intentionally. This is one of the many reasons why the student body of East High worships him. The Wildcat leader practically never turns anyone away; Troy is, despite his popularity and fortunate life, a very compassionate person. With no negativity within him, Troy is the physical embodiment of positivity and innocence. He's not one to talk behind someone's back or insult someone. He is completely honest and trustworthy, and he never, ever breaks his promises. Troy is the definition of a "go-getter". This is what makes him diverse from any other boy. Once he says something, he means it, and that's what goes. He never backs down on his word. Troy has a large heart, and although he tends to keep his emotions under control — and even under wraps — a majority of the time, he is capable of expressing his true feelings in a genuine, powerful light. Another thing about Troy is that he treats everyone like his best friend. In his mind, there is no such thing as strangers; everyone is a friend. But if you hurt Troy or prove to him you're not a friend, he won't be your friend anymore. He is filled to the brim with love and affection, sweet to nearly everyone he comes across, and can typically see the beauty in most things. Everyone he meets, he will always greet them with a warm smile and a friendly hello. It is awfully easy for Troy to make new friends everywhere he goes. He is always being told that he is a very kind-hearted young man.


Troy's sympathetic nature.

As the ultimate "Mister Nice Guy" of East High, Troy is a kid in love with life; the classic high school king, on top of the world. He always thinks there's some good in people, no matter how bad they are. Sure, he gets swayed a little bit throughout the course of the series, but he proves that he’s a loyal Wildcat through-and-through in the end. He will happily give anyone a chance, unless they seem false to him, or, are intentionally nasty to him. Troy is a person who sticks up for the little guy and people who don't have a voice of their own. He has a passion for the arts, reading, and studying drama whilst playing basketball. He also is curious about the unknown, such as his life after East High. He forgives people with ease, even when they do not deserve it. Sweet-tempered and even a bit naïve, Troy tries to see good in everyone, and wants to bring that good out of others, especially if it turns out to be musical talent. Troy is also perfectly willing to over-look obvious personality flaws. He is full to the brim with optimism, kindness, mischief, and fun. His peace-making and affable nature has allowed him to make many friends, ranging from fellow jocks to social outcasts all over East High. Troy also respects nature and is a good-hearted person, and he will do anything for anyone, even a stranger who has difficulties.

Don't be homophobic, and certainly don't mess with his friends whenever he's around. From childhood, Troy has held the belief that everyone should be treated equally and makes attempts to refrain from acting on bigotry himself. He indefatigably stands up for the LGBTQ community because he believes it is a place where people are equals regardless of whether they are transgender, gay, lesbian or bisexual. Troy understands what the LGBTQ outcasts have to deal with every single day, which leaves him heart-broken. His kindness is sometimes exploited by other characters, but everyone values his good-natured spirit, as it often brings happiness to others, something Troy strives to accomplish regularly. He is willing to sacrifice personal comfort or goals if it would benefit others, which Troy cares about.

Troy doesn’t pick a fight, but he ends it if he’s in one. He isn’t a bully at all. He isn’t an emotional wreck that looks for a fight at every corner. But, if the logical thing to do is to fight because the situation calls for it, he will. He’ll also never hit a man when he’s down. He isn’t fighting to destroy, but to defend. Troy isn't a violent or hot-tempered person by any stretch of the imagination, but when it comes to protecting those he cares most, all bets are off. He completely swears off violence and will almost never resort to it. Troy does not need to resort to violence most of the time, though helping the forces of good by doing things like healing, shielding or standing up for the innocent.

Role in Series Edit



Troy Bolton breathing heavily.

Troy Bolton's palms were sweaty, along with the rest of his golden body that was drenched in that same salty liquid. The bronze skin glistened like rain had fallen contracted around his huge muscles. Bulging biceps, defined six-pack abdominals, protruding pectorals, everything seemed to be pulsating as his head lifted from the shining hardwood. Drowning azure orbs flashed beneath the holy lights from above. His rapidly beating heart slammed against his stone chest with force. It was the only sound in the enormous gym besides his ragged breathing that rattled his ribcage. His hands were shaking as he felt the bumpy surface of the orange sphere turn beneath his fingertips. The illuminated neon clock on the wall paused its ticking. The soundless crowd leapt up and down in their comfortable seats. The gorgeous senior dressed in a scarlet and white uniform, stepped to the black line free throw slowly, still deaf to every screaming fans. His normally light-chestnut hair that had been separated into midnight sweat-drenched threads, tossing his shag away from his sticky forehead. He couldn't see the other players in the matching uniforms surround him, an ally to the basket. The true blue and yellow high school basketball team stepped between the spaces between the Wildcat enemies. The boy with the number fourteen plastered on his back narrowed his dark brow at the rivals. The stands that held the ecstatic red superfans were divided, straight down the middle. The sea of crimson was separated by a single row of chairs, not even the excitement of the most important game of the year able to bring them together. Not the last game of the season. The glowing scoreboard read 63 to 57, Wildcats. They were on their way to victory. The teenager closed his eyes again, still only aware of his flaming heartbeat and the trickles of sweat that grazed down his smooth face. He took a strong inhale of oxygen, just before he heard it. The soft voice that seemed to cut through the rest made his blood rush fluidly through his veins. The honey-sweet tone that canceled every other screeching fan away whispered in his tender ear. The only one that mattered. The Wildcats Varsity's captain turned his head slowly, sparkling blue lasers in search for the one. His ocean-blue eyes locked on a petite, long dark black-colored haired beauty standing on the second-to-last row of the stands that were jam packed. He could see her olive skin radiating off the golden lights from above, like a heavenly figure in a mass of hell. Like a spotlight shone down upon her in perfection, making her eyes glitter with nervousness. "Give me strength." Troy whispered in his velvet voice before turning away from his love.

Troy during the game.

The arena's eyes were on him, judging as he turned the rigid ball in his hands. Adrenaline was surging through his throbbing veins as he pounded the basketball to the ground twice, feeling the earth rubble with each bounce. His stomach was twisting nervously as he gazed up on the basket once again. Ripping his ceruleans open, Troy finally felt his ribcage vibrate as he took one deep breath of air and bent his powerful knees. The world suddenly shook as Troy pushed upward, large muscles constricting as the orange sphere left his fingertips. It suspended in the air momentarily, before suddenly swooshing through the white net and the entire gym erupted into screeches of triumph. Noise rushed through his ear drums as he was no longer deaf to the insane atmosphere of the gym. Cheerleaders chanting, the crowd roaring, his father screaming directions on the sideline all smashed upon his muscular body. The rest of his teammates were leaping up and down in joy, while continuing to scurry into position. Troy felt the defining heat on his back while glancing sideways towards the student section, watching the midnight waves of Gabriella bouncing with delight. She flashed him a proud smile. Red and white confetti came showering down from above. Troy was quickly lifted into the air by his teammates as teenagers and adults alike jumped up and down in the stands with excitement. Troy threw his head back and threw his arms in the air, letting out a scream of excitement.

Troy kissing the championship trophy.

When the large trophy was passed to him he raised that above his head. The screams of excitement increased as East High celebrated. Finally his teammates let him down and Troy passed the trophy to his light brown-skinned, big-haired afro, best friend, so he could relish in the moment as well. Making his way through the swarm of people was harder than it appeared. Every person he came across was cheering and congratulating him. Troy came across a small and petite girl with brunette hair with glasses, who was gingerly trying to get through the crowd. "Troy! Congratulations! You did a fantastic job!" She threw her arms around him. "Thanks, Kelsi." Troy smiled gracefully. Troy continued past the remaining people until he came to the edge of the bleachers. He furrowed his eyebrows; Gabriella was nowhere to be seen. He jumped up onto the bleachers so he could get a bird's eye view of the mob of people surrounding the trophy. Scanning it quickly, he couldn't see Gabriella anywhere even though he was able to pick out everyone else in their gang. It wouldn't make sense anyway that Gabriella would go in the mob. Frowning, he looked around the rest of the gym.


Quickly, Troy scrambled down from the bleachers and ran out of the gymnasium. He looked around frantically, praying that each brunette he laid eyes on would be Gabriella. None of them were. "Gabriella!" he exclaimed. Gabriella threw her arms around Troy, who breathed a sigh of relief as he hugged her tightly. "Congratulations! You were amazing, Wildcat! I was so nervous for you, but you were fantastic! I knew you would be able to do it! And when James Fletcher knocked you over that time I thought I was going to faint! Oh my goodness, I still don't know how you did it. I mean you had the entire pressure of the game on you and you managed to shoot those free-throws effortlessly!" Gabriella rambled excitedly. Troy smiled lovingly, cupping Gabriella's cheek with his hand and gazing into her eyes. "You were the one person I wanted to see after the game and I couldn't find you. I was worried." Troy confessed. Gabriella smiled softly. "I'm sorry about that. I think some boy ate something bad, he was complaining his stomach hurt and he said he felt like he was going to throw up just after the game finished." Gabriella explained. Troy chuckled.

Sun, warmth and haze greeted Troy as he opened his eyes the next morning. At first he didn't even attempt to lift his eyelids as his eyes were sore and heavy with sleep. He was sure they must be made of lead at the way they weighed themselves closed no matter how hard he tried to lift them. Softly he groaned to himself as he rolled onto his back on his mattress. Gradually he could feel himself waking from his ambiguous dozing state. However, the more conscious he became, the more aware he was of a rapidly increasing 'problem' that was brewing in his white Calvin Klein Boxer briefs. His usual 'morning wood' was turning into something a little more serious and as he lay there staring at the ceiling he realized why. Quickly rising from his position — he made a dash — in nothing but boxer briefs — to the bathroom. His body was tight with unreleased tension as he rounded the corner to the bathroom — only to be stopped by the sound of his mother's voice as it travelled up the stairs from the kitchen. He looked down and sighed. "Troy? Troy Alexander Bolton, are you up?" Lucille called out. He stopped and rubbed his hand over his face tiredly. "Yeah, Ma! I'm up." Troy replied. He looked at his 'problem' again and laughed in spite of himself. "I'm up all right..." he murmured humorously to himself, quickly proceeding to the bathroom before he had a chance of being caught in his current predicament. He closed the door behind him, before quickly stripping of his underwear and stepping into the big, open shower and running it cold. He jumped at the shock of the sudden temperature and only just stopped himself from letting out a yelp. He calmed his heart as he slightly increased the temperature, letting the water run down his body as he tried desperately to rid the arousal from his body. He gripped his Lynx shower gel bottle and squeezed the liquid into his palm, rubbing into contents into his skin. He stepped out the shower, stretching his muscular body out reaching for the ceiling, releasing its tension, before pulling a towel off the rack and rubbing himself dry. He wrapped the towel low at his waist before standing at the sink. Looking at the reflection of himself in the mirror, he couldn't help himself. He stopped as he met his eyes in the mirror and he shook his head.
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He looked at himself in the mirror; his blue eyes scanning him from top to bottom. He opened the water tap and cupped some water between his hands, splashing it on his face a couple of times, afterwards. He dried his face with a towel and then combed his hair with his fingers, pushing it backwards and letting it settle in its messy and natural way. "Troy!" Lucille yelled. He groaned at the sound of his mother’s voice at the bottom of the stairs. He then proceeded to stick his head out the door to reply. "Yeah?" Troy said. "When you get down here, I need help unpacking groceries." Lucille called out. Troy moved toward his room. "And don't forget — you've got school in ten minutes." she called. "Okay. Be down in a minute!" Troy called before walking back to his room. He quickly closed the door behind him before his gaze fell on his body. He pulled on a tight white t-shirt and a pair of baggy blue jeans over a clean pair of Calvin Klein's. With one spray of cologne he made his way down the stairs. "There you are..." Lucille Bolton smiled as he crisp and chipper only son emerged in the kitchen. He smiled and leaned over to kiss her cheek. "Mornin' Mama." He looked over at the many brown bags on the countertop as he reached for an apple. "More groceries?" he asked in an amused manner. "Well, you obviously don't realize how much you eat. You and your father, that is..." she smirked as she patted her son's strong arm. "Now — make sure you eat breakfast, then—" she pointed to the bags. "—groceries." she finished. "Yes ma'am." Troy agreed in a begrudged tone. "And maybe, when you finally earn enough to properly fix that deathtrap truck of yours, you can start buying the groceries for me, and then I'll unpack them instead." Lucille said. His mother rounded the fridge and came back into view as Troy rolled his eyes playfully at her comment. "Hey — My truck is not a deathtrap!" Troy whined. Lucille's eyebrows rose at him skeptically. "It's not!" he conceded, before tipping his head to the side a little and licking his bottom lip. "It's a work-in-progress." Troy said innocently. His mother laughed as she winked at her son. "Okay then." she chuckled. Troy chomped at his apple before beginning to unpack the groceries as he hummed to himself. When he was about half-way through, his mother reappeared. She leant her shoulder against the fridge and just watched him. Troy slowly jogged to the kitchen to see a brunette man dressed in a matching tie and dress pants reading the white newspaper. His careful fingers drummed against the table gently, before his caramel eyes glanced up, at the same time as his bright teeth glinting in the light. "Morning, Troy." Jack greeted warmly. "Hey, Dad." Troy smiled happily. He walked over to the fridge and opened it, taking out the only bottle of milk left. "Someone's in a good mood." Troy mother's voice carried from in front of the stove, the smell of eggs and bacon entering Troy's nose. "Mom, come on, it's Monday — beginning of a new week. Who wouldn't be happy?" He practically sung at her as he reached for the glass of orange juice she had set out for him. She eyed him before answering. "You still have a whole day to get through, Troy, don't overlook a quality education for the 'new weekend, new possibilities' fad." she accused, pointing at him with the spatula. He choked on his orange juice before smiling at her. "I can't believe you just said fad, and don't worry Mom, I take my education very seriously.” Troy smiled dramatically. "Yeah... it's a shocker, isn't it?" Jack teased, flipping the newspaper over before standing slowly, towering over Troy by a good three inches. "I gotta head to the school... just make sure your skin doesn't burn in the sunlight, all right?" Jack teased before pressing his tender lips to his wife's forehead, who was standing in front of the stove. "You're the biggest liar I've ever seen, Troy Bolton. Bacon and eggs?" she whined smiling at him. He eyed the eggs. "Just bacon. I'm leaving and I can't drive while eating eggs, Mom, too messy." Troy chuckled. He lunged for the bacon before she could argue and sprinted for the front door. He grabbed his thick red and white varsity jacket. Troy gently leaned over the light wooded table to kiss his mother's cheek. His shoes was the last thing to go on before he exited his house. He hopped into the driver's seat of his 1962 Ford F-250 Flareside truck and backed out of the driveway.

The school drive was very busy. Troy pulled into his lucky number 14 parking place at East High School. Slowly, Troy unbuckles his seatbelt and hops out of the car. Troy pushed open the glass double doors to be greeted with what felt like a million faces. As he walked down the hall people greeted Troy non-stop, mostly girls, fluttering their eyelashes. "Sup man!" A guy greeted Troy, offering him a knuckle-punch. "Troy! My man!" Another unfamiliar face greeted. "Dude! Troy, congratulations on the championship!" Yet another stranger greeted, in which Troy just smiled lightly and nodded. "Hi Troy!" A short blonde girl with a cheerleading outfit said. He just walked casually down the hallway nodding at the many people politely. "Troy, looking good." "Troy, I missed you during the weekend." "Troy, feel's like forever, where've you been?" "Troy, we should catch up, maybe this week?" Flutter eyelashes. Smile widely. High-five. Knuckle-punch. Handshake. "Hey, Troy!" A familiar voice stuck out about all the rest. A smile crept onto Troy's handsome face as he looked up at his Chad standing near a row of lockers. Instantly, Troy sprinted up and did his and Chad's fist-bumped. He smiled and walked with Chad through the entrance of East High. "Man, you'd think you were Shaquille O'Neal or something." Chad said, as he nodded toward the group that was just staked out in front of Troy. Troy laughed and shook his head. "You know, it feels more like Hell instead of school to me." Chad joked and looked around the entrance. Troy laughed again and nodded in agreement. They headed down the hall. They reflexively started heading off to their lockers. Chad started rambling about how they need to start practicing if they want back to back championships. But Troy wasn't listening. They stopped early to see a blonde boy wearing a white polo shirt, black pants and a black fedora to match standing in front of his locker. Troy took in the sight as he saw the flamboyant-styled boy walking towards them. "Hey, Evans!" Chad greeted their friend and smiled. "Hey Chad, hi Troy." Ryan responded and reached back to grab a book from his locker. "It took forever for me to get up this morning." Ryan chuckled. "Yeah, I think I hit the snooze about four times wishing it was just a dream. Where's your sister?" Chad said. Ryan rolled his eyes teasingly. "Now that was a dumb question. She's with Zeke, as usual. You know she never shuts up about him! It drives me crazy! But I guess it's better than how she was before." Ryan said in defense. Troy nodded in agreement. "So Troy..." Ryan said, turning to him, snapping Troy out of his trance. "The fall musical tryouts are next week. Are you going to follow up a great performance in the winter musical?" he asked. Troy's stomach dropped again. He had, indeed, thought about it. But not because he was an inspiring actor or singer. It was for another more important reason. "I'm not sure..." Troy said while rubbing the back of his neck – a habit he did when he was nervous. "Maybe I'll just watch you and Sharpay." he continued. "Oh come on now." Ryan said and shook his head. "Well, it's your choice I guess. But we'll be looking for you." Ryan chuckled. Troy nodded his head and looked at the clock. "Chad, we need to get going. We can't miss Homeroom." Troy said nervously. The two waved to Ryan, got their books from their lockers and headed off down the crowded hallway. "Where's your girlfriend anyways?" Troy asked Chad. "You know girls, they have to look so damn perfect." Chad responded with an eye-roll. "Well, we only do it for you boys." A brown-skinned beauty with stylish black bob-styled hair, wearing a purple Brooks Brothers tie, with matching sweater vest over business blouse said as she popped up next to Chad. Troy watched as his best friend smiled and kissed his girlfriend on the lips. "Hey, Troy." She said and he nodded at her. Suddenly, Troy slowly turned around to face the door and felt his jaw drop about five feet. Standing with Taylor could only be a dreamGabriella. Troy watched as his gorgeous girlfriend walked towards him and smiled. "Hey Troy." She greeted him with a shy, but smooth voice. For one of the rare times in his life, he was a loss for words. Finally, Troy shook his head slightly to clear his mind and smiled back. "Uh, hey Gabriella." He finally managed to get out. She continued to smile at him and giggled a little. Walking closer to him, he could smell the faint scent of her perfume, making him want her even more. "You look incredibly drop-dead gorgeous as always." Troy smiled charmingly. Gabriella shyly smiled again and blushed deeply. "Thank you, Wildcat. You don't look bad yourself." she said flirtatiously. His bright blue eyes met her deep brown. The four walked through the hall. Troy grinned when he saw the masses of students running from place to place and chattering about their championship. Troy and Chad bumped fists and pulled each other into a hug, slapping each other on the back and pulled away. Suddenly, a brown-skinned, muscular guy appeared next to the two. Troy stood looking over professionally with his arms crossed over his chest, leaning against the edge. "We kicked some serious West High butt during that game!" Troy chuckled. They bumped fists again. The three boys went over to admire their MVP trophy case.

Troy looking at Sharpay.

A skinny, beach-blonde girl with her hair let down in her natural curls as her long bangs covered her forehead approached the boys, popping her chest out flirtatiously. "Hey, Troy!" Sharpay exclaimed, causing Troy to turn around and look at her. "So, when's the big game?" she asked delightfully. Her cell-phone rang, causing her to look down. "Uh, yesterday." Troy said, kind of confused. Sharpay looked up, totally unaware of what Troy had just told her. "Oh well. Good luck." Sharpay said, blowing a kiss to Troy with a wink before sauntering down the hall. Troy caught the fake-blown kiss with his fist. Troy, Chad and Zeke all watched Sharpay as she walked away and then Troy saw Zeke dreaming. "She's so sweet!" Zeke said and held his hand up to his chest. Chad shook his head. Troy looked at Zeke and playfully slapped him across the cheek. Troy then looked back at Sharpay. "Oh sorry." Zeke said snapping back to reality. They all continued to walk down the hall and Troy broke the silence. "Anyway, are you guys looking forward to Prom?" Troy asked. "Yeah, but dude, you really need to give me some advice on how to even talk to a girl." Chad complained. "Just talk to her about her favorite things." Troy suggested. "Taylor only likes talking about girl stuff." Chad replied. "Well if that's what she wants to talk about then just go along with it." Troy asked back. "It's so easy for you to say because you know what Gabriella would say." Chad said, already knowing the answer. "Well not every time and it's actually not that easy." Troy said trying to cheer Chad up. "Riiiight... Well, are you going to ask her to the Prom?" Chad asked curiously. "Me ask Gabriella, I don't know dude. I mean, I don't have a problem asking my girlfriend. It's just... well... to tell you the truth, I've never been to a dance." Troy confessed. "Seriously, haven't you ever heard of 'homecoming?'" Chad asked. "Yeah, but I didn't go because number one, I didn't have a date and number two, I didn't want to go." Troy said. "So what's the problem with asking her?" Chad asked. "I've never asked a girl to a dance!" Troy said. "Well I'm sure Gabriella really wants you to ask her!" Chad said. "I'm sure she wants me to ask... her... too..." Troy trailed off and time suddenly stopped as he didn't realize where he was going. Troy completely walked into an open locker and lost balance of himself and fell to the ground. "Troy, are you okay?" a male voice asked in desperate concern. Troy sat up and felt the bump on his head. "Ouch!" Troy yelled. "Hello Superstar, are you okay!?" the boy said again, a little louder. "Yeah, wait who are you?" Troy replied, his eyebrows furrowed. "It's Rocket Man." the skinny, lanky boy wearing a beanie answered with delight. "Yeah right, no, sorry. Hey, Jimmie!" Troy replied with a respectful nod. As he got up to his feet, he brushed his jeans, and noticed Jimmie staring at him. "That looked like it really hurt." Jimmie added as he touched Troy's forehead where the bump was. "Oh yeah, it's all cool. It didn't hurt at all." Troy said and smiled politely at the lanky kid.

Troy and Jimmie.

"Wow, you're really strong, but try to daydream about your girl when you're not walking by things you're about to bump into." Jimmie teased. "Hey, I wasn't daydreaming." Troy exclaimed, smiling. Suddenly, Jimmie wrapped his arm around Troy's shoulder. "Troy, my brotha... Can I have your gym locker?" Jimmie asked. His arm draped off of Troy. "What?" Troy said with shock and confusion in his tone. Jimmie looked at him anxiously. "Like, starting next week. You know, I was thinking about joining the team next season and, uh, I think I'd be helping out with the guys." Jimmie said, nearly blushing. Troy crossed his arms across his chest. "Oh, yeah. Yeah, why didn't I think of that?" Troy asked with a flashing smile. Jimmie scoffed. Apparently Jimmie didn't seem to notice the sarcasm. "I don't know." he responded, shrugging his shoulders. In response, Troy smiled warmly. "Well, can't be tardy again. See ya later, bro!" Jimmie said as he rushed down the hall. Troy looked back as he saw Jimmie run. His face tensed and shut his eyes as he muttered underneath his breath. "Well, well, well. That was a sight. Rocket Man talking to Golden Boy? Boy, was that game awesome!" Zeke said gleefully as he snuck up behind Troy. "Yeah, without our team captain here we wouldn't of got that three-pointer to end the game." Chad said, giving Troy a quick look. "Okay. Chad, just F.Y.I., that was Rocket Man." Troy stated, correcting his best friend. "There’s a rumor about a party pretty soon, celebrating the back-to-back championship game at Chad's house." Zeke informed the clueless blue-eyed boy. "Oh yeah? If this rumor is true, guys, East High deserves it! And it's our senior year, Wildcats!" Troy said confidently. "Hell yeah!" Zeke told the guys, winking delightfully. "A party would be awesome, but, I have to focus on finishing high school, deciding which college to go to, and Gabriella." Troy said, glaring at Zeke. Laughing, Chad and Zeke went their separate ways. The shrill sound of the school bell rang through the halls of East High, as crowds of students spilled out into the corridors, eager to get to break. Troy closed his locker door with a bang and turned, leaning against it casually as his eyes scanned the crowded hallway for a certain familiar face. Suddenly he spotted the head of long, curly black hair moving towards him from amidst the sea of teenagers and smiled to himself. "Hey beautiful!" Troy greeted his girlfriend with a kiss on the forehead as she finally reached him. Gabriella sighed as she leaned into his chest. "Hey..." she murmured, closing her eyes. "Man, it's gonna be a looong day." she groaned. "Come on..." Troy said into Gabriella's hair, placing a kiss there. "Let's get out of here." he finished. With that, he took her books off her and grabbed her hand, leading her through the slowly clearing corridor and out onto the street. Swinging their hands between them, Troy looked down at Gabriella. "So, Brie — what's the plan for this afternoon?" he asked. Gabriella shrugged. "Homework, homework and – for something a little different... more homework." she groaned. Troy raised an eyebrow. "Sounds like... fun!" he exclaimed. Gabriella rolled her eyes. "Tonnes..." she yawned. "Heeey – cheer up, Gabriella!" Troy joked, breaking the link between their hands and wrapping his arm around her shoulders instead, squeezing her slightly. "Only a couple more days till the weekend, and then we can just relax together – maybe catch a movie? Go out for dinner?" Troy suggested. Gabriella flashed him a half-hearted smile. "I'll try and pencil you in around my chemistry report, calculus assignment and rehearsing for that presentation ceremony – honestly, I don't know why I said yes to Miss Darbus – she has me wrapped around her little finger!" Gabriella let out her breath and pushed her stubborn hair out of her eyes. Troy knew she was frustrated, and not only because she had so much on her plate. Troy chuckled at his exasperated girlfriend. "Come on Brie – it's not all doom and gloom! We both know you're the best person for the job and that you'll do brilliantly. It's not the end of the world. You'll get the work done – you always do!" he smiled down at her. "I have faith in you!" he added. Gabriella nodded quietly as they continued to walk in a comfortable silence. Troy laughed to himself as he suddenly remembered the party Chad had said earlier in the day that he had been meaning to tell Gabriella. "Hey – you'll never guess what... Brie?" Troy trailed off as he realized his girlfriend was no longer by his side. He turned on his heel. "You all right, Gabi?" he asked as he realized she was a few paces behind him. "Yeah. But can you slow down a little?" she huffed. "Yeah... okay..." Troy replied, frowning a little as he took her hand and continued walking. "You'll never guess what Chad said..." Troy started again but was interrupted by Gabriella. "Troy, can you please slow down? I can't keep up!" she said in a small voice. Troy's brow creased as he came to a halt. "Babe, are you sure you're okay?" Troy asked in a genuine concern tone. Gabriella gave a tiny nod. "I'm just tired." she yawned again, as if proving her point. "I didn't get much sleep last night between studying for the history test and stressing about the song for the presentation." she said. Troy cast his eyes over Gabriella and took in her appearance – dark circles under her glazed over eyes. Troy extended a hand and rested it against her forehead. "Hey, at least you're not having a fever." he informed her. "Troy, I'm just tired! It is a Monday after all!" Gabriella insisted. Troy shook his head. "Come on, let's get you to the gang." he said. "Bu..." Gabriella whined. Troy pressed a finger to her lips. "No arguments." he stated. They continued slowly walking down the hallway. "You know I'm always there to protect you, right, Gabriella?" Troy said sincerely. "And you do a great job, Wildcat." Gabriella smiled charmingly. "Anything you say, babe. I'll follow you anywhere." Troy smiled and laughed. "Yeah, but you still love me." Gabriella said. His clear, blue eyes bored into her chocolate brown ones, twinkling. "Yeah, I do. And you love me too." Troy sighed delightfully. Gabriella sighed contentedly. She gently pressed her lips against his neck. Troy let out a small groan, and wrapped his arms around her slim waist. He kissed her hair. Troy gazed into her deep brown orbs. She smiled at him, brushing his hair out of the way. Gabriella affectionately nuzzled his nose. Troy sighed. He wished he could savor this moment forever. "What are you thinking about, Wildcat?" Gabriella asked, breaking the peaceful silence. Troy grinned, wrapping his arms around Gabriella even tighter. His lips trailed from the corner of her mouth to the tip of her earlobe, where he gave a playful nibble. Gabriella moaned, tangling her fingers into Troy's hair. "Hm, what am I thinking? I'll give you three guesses…” Troy nipped the base of Gabriella's neck. Gabriella moaned a little louder. "Um, basketball?" Gabriella let out a breath she hadn't known she was holding. "No, try again." Troy said playfully. His hand gently caressed her thigh. Gabriella drew a deep breath. "Um, school?" she asked dumbly. Troy gave her an unreadable expression. Then, out of nowhere, he burst out laughing. Talk about a mood killer. Troy finally stopped laughing, but there was still an amused smile on his lips. Gabriella narrowed her eyes, slapping him playfully on the chest. Troy grinned, and swung her arms around his neck. Then he pressed his body up to her. Gabriella gasped at the contact. Troy's grin grew wider. "Oh Brie, Brie, Brie. And you're supposed to be the genius here.” he teased. Gabriella stuck her tongue out at him. "What's that supposed to mean, my lunkhead basketball boy?" Gabriella couldn't resist the on-going crack that Taylor had started. Troy scrunched up his nose adorably at her. "It means it should have been obvious what I was thinking about." he stated confidently. Gabriella rolled her eyes. Troy dramatically sighed. "Oh, woe is me! My Lord, what have you done to my beautiful Gabriella? She was supposed to be smart one...eth." Troy said, pretending to faint. Gabriella giggled at Troy's antics. Troy grinned. He loved to make Gabriella laugh. It was the prettiest laugh he had ever heard. Troy circled his arms around her waist, resting his forehead against hers. "If you really wanted to know, I was thinking about how lucky I am to have you." Gabriella said sincerely. Her eyes flickered towards Troy's. They were so clear, so blue. And they were sincere. "Brie, you're one in a million. No, you're my one in a million. I love you." Troy said in a genuine tone. Gabriella beamed. She sighed, pressing her lips against his cheek. "I love you too." Gabriella stated. Troy grinned brightly. "Come on." he said, smirking. The couple rounded the corner and saw Taylor and Chad holding hands and kissing passionately on the lips. Troy cleared his throat, trying his best not to be rude. Upon hearing this, Chad gently pulled Taylor away from him and looked up with his eyes wide. "Yo, Hoops! Hey, Gabster." Chad exclaimed, rubbing the back of his neck nervously. Taylor licked her plush lips embarrassingly and chuckled. "We're sorry for interrupting, guys..." Troy apologized sincerely. "Hoops. Man, it’s all good. Right Tay?" Chad assured politely whilst looking at his girlfriend. In response, Taylor nodded. "Um, guys, I'm gonna get a drink of water. Brie — I'll be quick as lightning, I promise." Troy said reassuringly. "I'll be here, Wildcat." Gabriella responded with a charming smile. Troy’s lips slammed onto Gabriella’s cheek. He then jogged down the corridor.

Before meeting Brett Shimura.

Troy walked down the hallway as students come and go around him, chattering and laughing. His blue eyes flickered over every student that filed through the hallway, lingering on the people passing by. Troy calmly strolled down the corridor, as he was a few feet away from passing Homeroom when suddenly a bony body collided into his left arm. Whoever that person was, Troy's hands reflexively closed around the figure to keep them from falling. But it was too late as the small figure fell, causing their papers to scatter around the two. Immediately, Troy bent down to help. He blew a gust of of air upwards towards his bangs; the air gliding his bangs out of his eyesight. His cerulean irises then locked with a skinny, anxious Japanese-American boy wearing glasses. "Oh, God, are you okay? I am so sorry. I didn't even notice you walking." Troy said in an apologetic tone. The anxious boy looked slowly away from his gaze, looking around; then his eyes lock on Troy’s for a second, before he looked back down. The boy nodded, indicating he was all right. "Th— thanks. I wasn't paying any attention so it was m— my fault." The boy stammered back. "No, it wasn't." Troy said, shaking his head. "It's my fault. I didn't see you. I'm so sorry." He apologized again as he stared anxiously down on the boy. "Can I help you up?" Troy asked as concern covered his face. He extended his hands out. "I'm fine." the kid simply said, shaking his head as he tried to get up gracefully. The jock smiled warmly. When Troy came back upright he studied the little, shy Asian for a few moments as if he was trying to read his mind. "Are you sure you're all right?" Troy asked kindly, handing the boy back a timetable. "Yeah, thank you." he responded softly, pushing his glasses up on the bridge of his nose sheepishly. "You're very welcome." Troy said, smiling politely. The small boy chuckled awkwardly and started to look around shyly. He came to the realization that he had never seen this person before. "I don't recognize you. Are you new here?" Troy asked out of curiosity. The shy Asian boy nodded shyly. Immediately, Troy sensed the nervousness in the boy's features. "Well then, I should introduce myself, shouldn't I? My name is Troy Bolton. May I have your name?" Troy asked politely, holding his hand out to shake Brett's hand, who shakes it back. "Brett." the boy replied nervously. "No, what's your full name?" Troy asked. "Brett Shimura..." the Asian boy sheepishly replied, confused. "Well, Brett Shimura, it's a pleasure to meet you. I know it's hard to make friends on the first day, so I thought maybe I could help you out." Troy said confidently as he slightly laughed. "Oh, okay. That's nice of you though, Troy." Brett murmured. "No problem. Here, pull your schedule out so we can see if we have any classes together." Troy instructed. Brett pulled out his class schedule and handed it to the jock. Troy, in return, takes it and studies it. "Sadly, we don't have any classes together. You have Walters for Homeroom. But don't worry, he's super nice, I promise." Troy chuckled with a wink. Brett smiled sheepishly whilst looking around. "So, where are you from?" Troy asked out of curiosity. "Um, I just moved here from Hawaii, like, a week ago." Brett chuckled nervously. "Golly! Hawaii is a beautiful place! What part of Hawaii?" Troy asked. "Honolulu." Brett stated simply. "Well in that case, let me be the first to welcome you to not only Albuquerque, but to East High! Want a tour?" Troy asked voluntarily. Brett nodded hesitantly but smiled gently. "Well, lets go then! So, how do you like East High so far, Brett?" Troy asked curiously. They walked down the crowded hallway. "Actually, I, um... I don't really know. Um, I just came out of the front office..." Brett said nervously, trailing off. "Oh. Well, that's okay. Someone needs to show you the ropes. I wouldn't mind helping you out. Even if I haven't bumped into you." Troy said, giving a dazzling smile. Brett looked up at him helplessly, but smiled. "So the grand tour of East High School!" Troy grinned proudly, stretching his arms out with pride. Brett smiled weakly and then followed Troy, trying to remember where everything was. Troy did most of the talking as they walked, pointing out classes that Brett had and telling him what teachers to look out for and who were okay. "First impressions are the best way to leave lasting impressions. As long as they're good of course." Troy said brightly. "Oh, yeah." Brett chuckled sheepishly. Troy smiled down at him. "Well, I'm glad I could help you out, Brett. Anytime you need a friend, well I'll need to get mine buffed up after all the work I've done in it today, but I'm happy to have helped you." Troy said warmly. Brett chuckled softly. Troy grinned to a group of people, at least four. "I want to introduce you to some more friendly Wildcats, so you'll feel more comfortable. Is that okay?" Troy offered warmly. Brett smiled meekly. "I know you're nervous, Brett. But there's no need to be." Troy assured. "I just... It's... I'm not good in social situations, and I..." Brett trailed off as Troy pulled back enough to look down at the shy new kid’s face. Brett peered at him from under his eyelashes, taking in his expression. "Talking to a group of strangers, just... makes me feel like a nervous wreck because I have no idea how to make small talk..." Brett stated nervously. Troy huffed a sympathetic sigh. He didn't want to appear like he was pitying Brett, as he knew many people with any kind of disposition didn't like that, yet he wasn't sure what else he could do. He'd never had trouble with people, or meeting new people, as he generally saw himself as laid-back and easy-going. However, as he looked on at the shy, innocent boy beside him who was struggling to even think of walking towards his friends, Troy was beginning to realize how lucky he was to be this way. "Of course they will like you, Brett." he confirmed easily. Brett scoffed, and Troy watched Brett scrunch up his nose in disbelief. "Listen to me." he husked in his usual soft, half-whisper voice. He crouched slightly to be at Brett’s eye-level. "Of course they will like you." he emphasized. "They will, just as I do. There's no need to be scared. I'll stay with you." Troy stated gently. Brett smiled wanly, though he was beginning to feel better. "Guys, I want to introduce you to someone. Everyone this is Brett Shimura, he transferred here from Hawaii." Troy said before turning his head to look at Brett. "Brett, these are my friends. This is my childhood best friend-slash-wingman, Chad Danforth." Troy said, pointing to Chad. The group all turned around when they saw Brett. Chad offered a friendly grin to him which Brett smiled shyly. "Well, nice to meet you, Brett. This is my girlfriend, Taylor." Chad announced proudly. "Hello, I'm Taylor McKessie. It's so nice to meet you, Brett. And my, my you are adorable, if I must say so!" Taylor squealed with delight. Brett blushed, letting out a small laugh. The group laughed as well. "Ryan Evans — A.K.A. Drama King — and it's nice to meet you, Brett." Ryan said, smiling kindly. "Hi, nice to meet you." Brett responded softly. "And this young, beautiful and intelligent woman is the love of my life, Gabriella Montez!" Troy announced proudly, causing Gabriella to hold back a laugh. "Troy, stop it! It's a pleasure to meet you, Brett. I hope you have a fantastic first day at East High! You're going to love it here, I promise." Gabriella smirked sweetly. She holds her hand out to shake Brett's hand, who shakes it back. Troy lovingly wrapped his arm around Gabriella's waist. "So Brett, tell us about yourself?" Taylor said nicely. Brett just bit his lip and shrugged. "Well, he moved here from Honolulu, Hawaii — it's why he was transferred here. The work at his old school was probably too easy for him, so they allowed him to come here and join us." Troy explained, assumingly. "Brett is really shy, and it takes him some time to warm up to you, but just give him time and soon you'll be best friends." Troy stated proudly, giving Brett a wink. Brett smiled at that. "How did you and Troy meet?" Ryan asked. Again Brett bit his lip nervously and looked to Troy. He smiled gently at him. "Well, we bumped to each other — by accident of course — and so I thought I could teach Brett the ropes and all about East High. At least it's how it started. But now Brett and I have formed a friendship as well." Troy stated. "That’s good! We’re all-around good people. If anyone can help you though, Brett... It's Troy." Gabriella beamed. The warning bell for Homeroom rang through out East High and the few people that were still left in the hallways quickly disappeared into various classes. "Oh, shoot! Darbus will be furious, guys. Nice to meet you, Brett." Chad said as the gang rushed past Troy and Brett. "Yo, Hoops! Come on, man!" Chad hollered. "I think I am just fine thank you very much, Chad! I'm just gonna talk to Brett here for a little longer." Troy called out, shooting Chad a look that said 'don't start'. Chad and the gang ran down the hallway. "Well, looks like I'm late for Homeroom. But I'll still walk you to class." Troy assisted. Brett smiled shyly. They walked down the empty hallway a little while longer, coming to Brett's first-period class. They enter the classroom, with everyone looking up. "Hello, Mister Walters." Troy greeted kindly. "Ayyy, Troy! What brings you here?" a friendly-looking, white-bearded man asked. He shook Troy's hand firmly. "I just thought I'd drop by because we have a new Wildcat in our presence. Sir, this is Brett Shimura. He'll be in your class. Today is his first day." Troy said, flashing a dazzling smile as Brett stood anxiously next to him. "Well, Brett. Nice to meet you. Please, take a seat anywhere you'd like." Mr. Walters said, smiling warmly. Troy pointed to a desk in the back as Brett's seat. "Don't worry, you'll be fine, Brett. And besides, you'll see the gang and I sooner or later." Troy said assuringly. "Thank you for everything, Troy." Brett whispered in a sincere tone. "Hey, it's my pleasure. Well, Brett, this is where we depart. If we do remember seeing each other somewhere, it will come to us sooner or later. I'll see ya around." Troy said, giving a charming smile. Upon meeting Brett’s gaze, Troy smiled kindly at him. Brett responded with a shy smile. "Thank you, Troy." Mr. Walters said with a grin. "You are very welcome, sir. I'm glad I could help, even in the slightest." Troy replied with a respectful nod. With that, he turned around and casually walked out of the room. He calmly strolled through the empty corridor. A few students that were still left in the hallways quickly disappeared into various classes. Troy sighed as he began hearing a woman's voice lecturing the class 10 feet away from the door; her voice would get louder once she saw him. Troy took a deep breath and leaned against the doorway. He waited till the blonde-haired, hippie-dressed woman with bottle-bottom glasses noticed him. "And then—" she turned to the door, glaring the handsome teenage boy once she noticed his presence. "Mister Bolton! Late again, are we? It's the third time this year and it's barely graduation." she scolded, placing her hands over her hips. "I'm so sorry, Miss Darbus. I was helping out a fellow Wildcat." Troy mumbled apologetically. "You say that each time and you continue being late! Care to explain as to why you are late, again, Mister Bolton?" she asked, as she narrowed her eyes at him, causing small wrinkles at the sides of her eyes. "I was just helping a new student find Mister Walters’ class. Plus, I was just admiring how great you are, Miss Darbus. I mean your beauty just bounces off the walls." Troy smiled with innocent charm. He crossed his arms across his chest. As the whole class roared with laughter, Miss Darbus gave Troy a pointed look. "Mhm, nice save Mister Bolton. Now back to Shakespeare..." she announced. Troy rolled his blue orbs, chuckling to himself. His seat was in the front row, in front of Chad's desk. Troy casually walked to his seat and sat down. Troy quickly averted the situation by cracking a joke, causing the whole class to laugh. He shook his head in disbelief, while looking around the room in boredom. In the front of the room, Miss Darbus was sitting in a gold throne-like chair, holding a book. "All right, everyone! Settle down! I know we’re all still excited about our Wildcats top-to-back championship!" she exclaimed cheerfully.

Troy reads a note from Gabriella.

Troy’s eyebrows furrowed as he looked at a note on his desk. He opened up the folded piece of paper, and blushed immediately. He caught Gabriella’s gaze and smirked at her expression. Troy watched Gabriella giggle silently and turned his attention back to Miss Darbus.
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"That would be back-to-back, Miss D." Chad corrected with a grin. Everyone in the classroom laughed lightly. "Whatever the case, it was a grand-slam. Well done!" Miss Darbus said cheerfully, while Troy gave a big smile.

A worried Troy looking at Gabriella.

REST IS TBA. "Don't let it get to you Gabriella. There is nothing you can do, anyone should know that." Troy said trying to make her feel better. "I guess you're right." Gabriella replied. "Troy we're gonna be late!" Gabriella said quickly looking at her watch. "Shit, you're right!" Taylor said as she ran off, with everyone following. "Brie, I'll wait for you." Troy said. "No, no it's fine. I don't want you to be late. Go!" she replied, laughing. Just 10 minutes after the bell rang, Gabriella entered the classroom. She looked over at Troy who looked at her sympathetically, but was laughing at the same time. Gabriella just held up her forefinger and pinky, making a punk sign. "All right ladies and gentlemen, I think you can go now." the teacher said when the bell went off. "And don't forget, you're assignment is due next Wednesday!" Miss Darbus said yelling amongst the commotion. "What you have now, Brie?" Troy asked jokingly as they were walking down the corridor together. "Free period, Wildcat." she replied. "Well then..." Troy said, quickly stepping in front of her, wrapping his hands around her waist. "Would you like some free-time with Troy?" he said sneakily. "I have to finish this assignment. But you can walk with me to my locker!" She said sweetly which made Troy laugh. He almost buckled at the knees because of Gabriella's sweetness – it always made him melt. "Well all right then." he said. The hallways were somewhat crowded, and Troy and Gabriella walked along the corridors. Once again, Troy stepped in front of Gabriella, stopping her in her tracks. "Your locker is too far away." he said. "Troy, it's just around that corner." she replied. "Precisely. Wayyyy too far away!" he said, as he began to slowly back her against the locker. Gabriella smiled and dropped her books, wrapping her arms around his neck as she felt herself being pushed up against the locker. "Mmm, Trrohhyyyy..." Gabriella said against his lips trying to move away. "We can't..." she said, pulling her head away only to feel Troy's lips gently kiss down her neck. But Troy only shut her up by kissing her over and over again. "I’m so, so sorry Gabriella. Wouldn’t wanna be late for class, now would I?" Troy grinned playfully. "It's okay, Wildcat." Gabriella said, picking up her books from inside her locker. "All right, I'm gonna go to class and we’ll get that second kiss afterwards. I love you, babe." Troy said giving Gabriella a quick peck on the lips. "I love you too, Wildcat!" Gabriella replied as they went their separate ways.


Later, Troy walked aimlessly around the cafeteria as students come and go, chattering loudly. His ocean-blue eyes scanned the crowded cafeteria as he sat down with Gabriella, Chad and Taylor. Troy sighed before setting gripping his tray down and plopped down next to Gabriella, smashing his lips against hers. He was sitting around with all of his friends just laughing and joking. Troy looked up and broke into a slow smile upon seeing the new boy walk in, noticing that the poor guy looked nervous. With the new kid's eyes landing on Troy, Troy gave a little wave. The boy waved back but his smile faltered. Still grinning, Troy cocked his head to the side, gesturing to the empty seat beside him. "BRETT!" Chad hollered, waving his hand in the air, motioning for him to come sit. Troy held a smile on his face, but it was slowly slipping, as if trying to determine the new kid's reaction. His eyes still remained on the boy, but his brow was slightly furrowed as if confused. The nervous Asian boy took a seat on the outskirts of the cafeteria. "I'm going to take a seat up next to Brett, guys!" Troy said to the group. With that, he kissed Gabriella on the cheek and rose up from his seat. Troy casually walked over to the table where the lonely new kid was sitting. The boy didn't seem to notice Troy's presence at first. "You're welcome to join me, Wildcat." Troy said a little loud so Brett could hear him through the chattering and laughing of everyone else. Brett looked up a little alarmed and then sighed in relief. "You don't need to be alone." Troy said with sympathy. "I... I want to be on my own." Brett mumbled. "Well too bad." Troy smiled warmly. He put his tray down on the table and roughly placed his bag on the floor next to his chair as he sat down. "So, are we really going to sit here and play the 'I-See-You-But-I'm-Pretending-I-Don't' game?" Troy joked, chuckling. Brett didn't say anything. His eyes darted over Troy. "Um... So, how did you like your first-period class?" Troy asked. "Okay." Brett simply said, shrugging his shoulders lightly. "At least you had a good class with a good teacher. You've made any new friends yet?" Troy asked, nudging his shoulder gently to Brett's bony shoulder. "No... not yet." Brett whispered. "I think you could sit with a friend, and you've got a group of people waiting to be your friend at this place. But if you don't want to go, you've got a friend here wanting to sit with you." Troy said kindly. Brett didn't say anything, just started to chew his lip nervously. Troy smiled. "You do?" Brett asked with a shocked expression. "Of course. Want to tell me why you blew off my offer to sit with the gang and I, Brett Shimura?" Troy asked jokingly. He crossed his arms across his chest, patiently waiting for a response. Brett stiffened. "I wasn't blowing you off." he replied. "Yeah, you were. But it's okay. I know you probably still see me as one of those jock types." Troy chuckled. "What do you mean?" Brett asked, his eyebrows furrowed in confusion. Heaving out a sigh, Troy ran a hand through his hand. "You know, in high school. I am the jock type, the basketball guy. Never bothered with anything else or anyone else. It's okay if you see me like that, I understand. Lots of new Wildcats do." Troy said, biting his lip and looked down. "Troy... you're not like those stereotypical jocks. I don't think of you like that at all." Brett yelped. Troy stared at him and then smiled. "Then why don't you want to sit with me and the gang, Brett? It was an open invitation. Why would you just want to proceed to sit by yourself? I really want to get to know you better." he said, his eyes pleading. "I... I don't know... I'm new here and it's just... a lot of pressure, for me, to sit with a group of people I hardly know..." Brett said sadly. Troy broke out into a grin. His gaze darted down to Brett's fingers gripping a flashy silver ring on his middle finger. "Sorry." Brett apologized. Troy shook his head. "No need to be. It's no big deal. I promise. So, tell me more about yourself." Troy grinned. "Like... Like what?" Brett asked as if no one had ever asked him that before. "What's your story?" Troy asked casually. "I already told you. I moved here from Hawaii..." Brett smirked awkwardly. "No, no, no. Not your moving story. Your real story. Your interests, your hobbies, your passions, your weird self." Troy said as confusion spilled on Brett’s face. He noticed Brett composing himself, before continuing. "I don't know..." Brett said in confusion. "Come on, just think of something. The first thing that pops into your head. Something you love." Troy said whilst pointing to his temple. Then, Brett smiles. "An Imperial Affliction." he said happily. "Okay. What’s that?" Troy asked inquisitively. "It’s a novel. It’s my favorite novel." Brett chuckled. "Wait. Does it have zombies in it? Stormtroopers?" Troy asked in hope. "What? No! No, it’s... it’s not that kind of a book." Brett laughed. "Okay, what’s it about?" Troy asked, intrigued. "Uh, cancer." Brett said simply. Troy’s face was filled with shock as his eyes widened. "It’s about cancer?" he asked in a down-hearted tone. "But not like that. Trust me, it’s amazing." Brett assured. Troy grinned, causing Brett to smile a little more brightly. "Okay. I will read this horrible book with this very boring title... that does not include zombies or Stormtroopers. And in exchange..." Troy trailed off before grabbing his phone out of his pants pocket. "...You will give me your number, Brett Shimura." he finished as he put his phone into Brett’s tiny hands. Brett took it and punched his number into it, and then handed Troy his phone, who did the same. They sat in comfortable silence and Troy couldn't help but enjoy it. "I'll text you later or call or whatever and see if you want to come." Troy smiled. "Thanks. You didn't have to do any of this today." Brett said, blushing slightly. "Any of what?" Troy smiled. "Being nice to me." Brett sighed. "It's no big deal, you're my friend. And, I can't promise it's going to get easier but you know it won’t get harder 'cause like I've said a dozen times now you've got me as a friend. But now we have to eat, and you have to eat, even if I have to force-feed you, mister!" Troy chuckled. Brett slowly shook his head, letting out a sigh. "Eat, Brett." Troy said bringing Brett out of his thoughts. "Um, yeah..." Brett looked at the food. "Brett, you need to eat. Just a little, please?" Troy looked at him. Brett nodded slowly and then took a small piece of meat, and then he slowly started eating. "So do you like it?" Troy asked while putting food on his own plate. "Yeah, it's good, but..." Brett murmured, trailing off. Troy looked worryingly at him. "But..?" Troy said, waiting patiently. "I'm not that hungry." Brett replied, looking down, trying not to look at Troy. "It's okay, Brett. I'm not going to be mad. Just eat the food on your plate, and then I'll be glad, okay?" Troy said, smiling warmly. Brett nodded. "Good, so eat and then you'll put the rest in your lunchbox, and then we can hang out after school, okay?" Troy smiled at him, hoping that Brett would be able to eat, but he knew it would be hard to fight him through this. "Yeah, that sounds good." Brett smiled and started to eat the sandwich. "Okay, okay, but I don’t want to hear any complaining." Troy joked at Brett again. They sat in a comfortable silence. Deep down, Troy had a feeling Brett really wasn't even happy. Something had happened to change Brett, something bad and when Troy found out what or who it was they were going to pay. He needed more information, he needed to know so he could help Brett, but he also knew if he pushed too hard he'd lose Brett and all the trust he had worked so hard to gain. He opened his eyes and nodded. Deep down, Troy knew once Brett left school the smile would once again be gone. "I don't think I'll progress in school. I have a learning disability — processing issues — ever since I was born, and nothing has changed." Brett replied dejectedly, his eyes still on the table. "Ah, but I'm sure I'll see improvement." Troy answered optimistically. It was then Brett looked up to see his bright blue eyes and dazzling smile once more. "The thing about us humans is, when we begin something, we expect to be good at it straight away. After a couple of sessions, we expect to be pros when really it may take many months for any real improvement to be made. Look, trust me, it may take a while but once we have some practice where I only have to concentrate on you and you alone then we can make sure that you have some progress and good progress. It really isn't about being good. It helps, sure but it's the improvement that gets the grades and confidence." Troy finished. "I don't have a lot of that when it comes to school." Brett muttered. "Brett, you have to know that when you say that you can't do this or you can't do that then you won't do it." Troy told him carefully. "But if you tell yourself that you can achieve it and that you can do it then you will do it. You just need to give yourself some credit that you can be better than you think. You will be better. Just get some confidence." Troy said softly. "It sounds so simple when you say that." Brett replied quietly. "I know that it's easier said than done but I really see something in you Brett, I think you have lots of potential. In fact, I believe you've had this potential locked up for so long that you now can't find it and are determined to put yourself down. So, would you like some help?" Troy asked, his blue eyes burning into his brown ones. The pause was long yet comfortable enough and Brett sighed before replying. "I guess, I guess I could try it." Brett replied hesitantly. "Great! You can do it, Brett." Troy exclaimed. "I really can't play anything." Brett warned him. "It's not all about playing it! You've got to start on the little things, in your case, how to be optimistic." He chuckled and Brett couldn't help but giggle along side him. "Your high school life just started. Who knows what your future holds? You are different. The responsibility for being different is sharing it with the world. You will make yourself better, pushing you to raise expectations of yourself, believing that you will become great." Troy stated warmly. His face suddenly creased with humor as he chuckled throatily, shaking his head a little. "Being blind to the truth is what makes you you, Brett. You shouldn't wish it away." He neared Brett with clear intentions, however lost himself for a moment and didn't speak again straight away. "There are ways to help with that, you know." Troy said. Brett rolled his eyes. "Uh-huh. Yeah." he chided, sarcastically. Troy almost scoffed at Brett's definitiveness as his tongue slid across his teeth. "It's true!" he husked, forcefully. "How exactly?" Brett questioned, cynically. Troy leant forward. "By listening! By really... listening... and believing." he said. Brett shook his head and let out a breath, looking down at his lap, shy and dismissive. "You're... kidding, right?" Brett joked softly. "Listen. You are you, Brett. You may be reserved, shy, quiet, and overly self-conscious..." Troy began. Brett scoffed at this, slightly offended, staring down at his lap. "But, you're also exceedingly kind, and strong-willed, and genuine, intelligent, and perfectly, perfectly amazing. There's nothing wrong with being you." Troy said genuinely. "I know that..." Brett said, louder and harsher than intended as he tried to hide the teary tone of his voice. He sighed as he carried on hiding his face. "I know." Brett repeated, softer this time. "You wanna know something?" Troy asked, his tone equally as soft as he could. "What?" Brett asked, tears slightly evident in his voice. "I feel that way too sometimes." Troy said truthfully. "You?" Brett said, looking his way before he could stop himself. "You don't have to act so surprised." Troy chuckled softly. "Sorry, it's just... I'm intrigued now." Brett said, sniffing and wiping his eyes. Troy smiled a little. "Well, it's simple really... All my parents friends are like, 'Your son's the basketball guy. You must be so... proud.' But they forget, that's not all I am. In fact, I don't think that's what I want at all anymore... It's hard to know anything when people have been telling you what you want since you were born..." Troy said sadly. "I get that. My mom's been talking about me going to Stanford practically forever, but I simply, if I'm honest, don't feel worthy enough." Brett stated. "Precisely! It's the same with me and U of A. Yeah, since forever people have been telling me I could definitely be worthy of the Red Hawks... but what if I don't feel like that's what's right... Apparently what I think doesn't matter though, considering my dad stood over me while I wrote out my U of A application..." Troy said. "It must be hard, being the coach's son." Brett implied. Troy looked perplexed for a moment. "He just don't understand that what he wants isn't necessarily what I want." he said. Brett smiled slightly. "Brett?" he enquired, instantly concerned when observing him lack of a reply and his glazed expression. Troy reached out to touch Brett's shoulder. Brett looked taken aback. "How do I improve on it then? Because judging by my lack of knowledge, nothing is going to help me." Brett sighed sadly. "Trust me, you will improve. Like I said before, it may not be straight away, it may take some time, possibly all year but I promise you Brett, that it will work." Troy told him, almost in a stern tone, his blue eyes boring in to his, trying to make Brett see that he could do it. "Although first things first, you need some self-confidence. There is no point going into a game of basketball without it. You'll only end up with one thing." Troy said. "What's that?" Brett asked with interest. "Failure. Now, you've got to believe that you can do it. You've got to make yourself want it enough to make you believe you can do it. You with me?" He asked and Brett nodded quickly. "Look, Brett. You know you can come to me for anything. You do know that, right?" Troy assured gently. Brett took a few moments to clear his throat out and backed away while drawing in long, shuddering breaths. "I need you to promise me something. I need you to promise to call me — anytime, day or night — whenever you need me. You are an amazing young man who I am proud to call my friend." Troy replied solemnly. This caused Brett to grip from ear-to-ear. He could tell that there was something going on with Brett that he didn't want anyone to know about, and maybe Troy wasn't going to push straight away but it didn't mean that he wasn't going to be there to help him. "You okay, Brett? You seem in deep thought... anything I can help with?" Troy asked with concern. "No. It's nothing." Brett replied with a soft smile. "You sure?" Troy asked cautiously. The shy new kid nodded and hummed softly. "Okay, well, if you want to talk about anything, I'm here you know. Just say the word and I will let you talk my ear off." Troy said, smiling. "Thanks but don't worry about it." Brett replied. In the distance Troy heard the warning bell, he hadn't realized that they had been talking all lunch time. "Oh! Brett, there's a party tonight at Chad's house, and everyone is invited. So, maybe, if you'd like to come... But you don't have to if you don't want to..." Troy said awkwardly. Brett furrowed his eyebrows for a moment. Then, he smiled. "Sure. What time?" Brett asked. Troy smiled warmly. "Uh, it starts at 8:00, and I'll text you the address. So, I guess I'll see you there." Troy said, patting Brett on the shoulder awkwardly. Troy turned his heels and walked away.


"Troy, dinner is ready! Come down here." Lucille called out. "I'll be right down, Mom." Troy yelled back. "I made macaroni and cheese tonight." Lucille smiled gracefully. Troy sat down in his chair. A large plate was placed in front of him filled with macaroni and cheese.

Troy at the dinner table.

"Eat up, Troy. For dessert, we have double chocolate-chip ice-cream cake." Jack said. The family started on their dinner. They talked and laughed through the entire meal. "How was school today, Troy?" Lucille asked casually. "It was good. There is a new kid." Troy said, after swallowing. "What about this new kid?" Jack asked. "Well, he's shy and quiet. He sat alone at lunch but I sat with him, to make him comfortable." Troy admitted. "Well, we raised you to be polite and be a good-hearted person, Troy. If you don't mind me asking, who's the kid?" asked Jack. "His name is Brett. He's just really shy, but once you get to know him, he's friendly and smart." Troy said with a reassuring tone. "Well, that's good, Troy." Jack smirked. "I only met him today, and we became friends. Chad is having a party tonight at his house, and so I invited Brett to tag along. I already finished all of my homework." Troy said softly. Lucille was silent for a minute, taking in her son's words. "Well, as long as you did your homework, you deserve a break. Just have fun at Chad's. But no drugs or alcohol." she ordered firmly. "Mom, you know I would never do that." Troy responded, giving a small smile.

The engine of Troy's beat-up truck came to a stop, as he and Gabriella pulled up to the Danforths' household. Opening the car door, Troy stepped out and headed towards the passenger side and opened the door for Gabriella. "Milady." Troy said, grabbing onto Gabriella's hand and pulled her towards the ground safely. He closed the door behind her as he wrapped his arm lovingly around her body. Troy's shoes clicked against the pavement on the way toward the Danforths' front door. His eyes scanned the white marble. "This place looks crowded!" Troy said rising his voice. Gabriella shook her head and scanned the room for their friends. Troy grinned and waved his hands when he spotted Chad and Taylor talking indistinctly. "Chad! Taylor! Hey!" Troy called out. Chad and Taylor turned sharply and their faces broke into a smile. "Yo, Hoops! Gabster! You finally made it! What took you too so long?" Chad bellowed. "Gabs took so long getting dressed. I think I almost died." Troy sighed. Gabriella glared at Troy, which made Taylor roll her eyes. "I needed to find the right thing to wear tonight. Troy here does not understand that." Gabriella defended. Chad looked at Gabriella and gave her a sympathetic smile. Gabriella smiled. "Finally someone here understands the art of fashion." Taylor said. Troy snorted with a laugh. "That's right. But is that truly the reason why you two were late? No other reasons? Like, a hard time finding parking?" Chad asked with a seductive wink. "Eww!" Troy and Gabriella said in unison. Gabriella cringed at Chad's innuendo and shut their eyes tightly. "You know Troy and I would never do that." Gabriella protested. "If you say so!" Taylor said with a wink. "So where is everyone else?" Troy asked, switching the subject. "Out by the pool. But everyone knows the party doesn't start until the 'golden couple' walks into the room." Taylor said, shrugged. "You have to stop everyone from calling us that." Troy rebuked, crinkling his nose. "They know what our relationship is." Gabriella defended lovingly as she kissed Troy on the lips. "But no one can help it. You guys are always together, not to mention your popularity status. You two are top of the food chain. Your presence affects if this party will be good or not. Although our presence is also meaningful." Chad said as he looked at Taylor with heart-eyes. "Well then... the 'golden couple' has arrived." Troy smirked. He wrapped his arm around Gabriella's hips and pulled her closer to him. Gabriella laughed and swatted him playfully. The couple walked further into the house as the music was loud and upbeat. Everyone is crowded in the Danforths' living room, dancing, and celebrating — well everything. Troy slings his arms around Gabriella's shoulders. "So, enjoying yourself?" he asked loudly into his ear. Gabriella turned to face him, and Troy wasted no time grabbing her hand and pulled her into the midst of the dance floor.
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They emerge in the center of the circle — Troy leading Gabriella through the hoards of people. He spun her around, a smile on her face. "Hey, babe. I'm gonna go get some water, okay?" Gabriella yelled through the noise. Troy nodded and kissed her on the cheek. He watched her politely push her way through the crowd. Troy noticed Sharpay and Zeke chatting in the kitchen, getting to know each other. Ryan and Kelsi cuddled up on the couch, talking quietly. Chad and Taylor kissing lovingly on the lips. Troy is on the dance floor, surrounded by friends and noise, watching Chad and Taylor dance. He began to wonder why he hasn't seen Gabriella since she left. Troy made his way to the outskirts of the circle, his eyes darting around the room, seeking her out. He moved into the front foyer, and headed out to the backyard. Partygoers were whooping and laughing all around. Not seeing Gabriella anywhere, Troy furrowed his brows when he heard chanting of someone's name. Troy then noticed Brett enter the backyard, looking around nervously. "Brett!" Troy hollered, waving his hand in the air to get Brett's attention. Brett turned his head and saw Troy and smiled sheepishly. Troy made his way through the crowd towards the nervous Asian boy. "Hey. You came!" Troy said, flashing a dazzling smile. "So I did." Brett chuckled. "I mean, you came after all!" Troy exclaimed. Brett shrugged his shoulders. "I was feeling rebellious." he chuckled. "Ah! So you finished your homework?" Troy asked, raising a brow with suspicion in a jokingly way. "Yeah. Yeah, I did." Brett laughed. Troy nodded his head and looked around the room for Gabriella. He then turned his attention back to Brett. "Uh, you haven't seen Gabriella anywhere by any chance, have you?" Troy asked, raising a brow. "Um... no." Brett replied. Troy scanned Brett up and down, and smirked. "Come on. Let me show you around." Troy said, wrapping his arm around Brett's shoulder. "Yo, Chad! Look who came!" Troy yelled. Chad turned his attention towards Troy's voice and smiled. "Eyyy, New Kid! What's up?" Chad exclaimed as he fist-bumped Brett. Brett chuckled shyly. "So, drinks are over in the kitchen. Don't worry, it's non-alcoholic." Chad said assuringly. "Oh, okay." Brett responded with a little nervous laugh. A few moments ago, Brett looked ready to leave; now here he was, like he didn't have a care in the world. It amazed him how strong Brett was, how he could just completely recompose himself. REST IS TBA Then it happened. Brett bolted, taking off into the crowd. Troy and Gabriella ran after him. Brett sat alone in a bedroom, sobbing uncontrollably as tears streamed down his cheeks. "Brett?" Gabriella said in a genuine concern tone. The Asian boy stayed silent as Gabriella walked in with Troy at her side. "Are you all right?" she asked. "Brett, what’s wrong?" Troy asked. He felt his heart begin to break as he and Gabriella sat on both sides of her, watching the broken boy cry into his hands. "Jason..." he managed between tears. "He's gone." Brett choked out. Gabriella started rubbing gentle circles across Brett's back as he continued to cry. "I know." Troy whispered gently. Gabriella signaled a confused expression towards Troy. Troy looked at her, not ready to say anything. "You— You don't understand." Brett sobbed. "He was supposed to come back." he sniffled. Troy and Gabriella stared at each other confused. They both didn't know what Brett was talking about and assumed he was just hysterical from grief. "I'm alone. I'm alone." Brett whispered between sobs. The catch in his voice caught Troy's attention but it were the tears that suddenly appeared and rolled down his cheeks unchecked that told Troy that Brett still hurt from losing his brother, as he already knew, but also from the pain of losing the only person who willingly loved and admired him. "No..." Gabriella whispered gently, reaching down and took his hand in hers, giving it a gentle squeeze. "You're not." she said in a sweet velvet yet heart-broken tone. Chocking back a sob, Brett leapt up and threw his arms around Gabriella, burying his face in her chest as he wept. Surprised, Gabriella gently held Brett in his arms, holding Brett close. "You're never alone." Gabriella managed to whisper. Brett sniffled. "You and your family went through quite a bit, more than most children normally have to. If you ever want to talk, we're here, even if we're not physically here. It's going to be okay." Gabriella assured sympathetically. REST IS TBA "You all right?" Ryan's voice broke into Troy's thoughts and he turned to look at the flamboyant, blonde boy near him. Troy shrugged his shoulders, still not wanting to talk about it, especially to someone who wasn't Chad. "I'm hanging in there, why do you ask?" Troy asked. Ryan laughed a little. "I don't think I've ever seen someone in such deep thought as you are right now." Ryan said. Troy smirked and shrugged his shoulders once again. "Wanna talk about it?" Ryan asked. Troy sighed. He was too tired to try and argue not talking about it and it wasn't like Ryan was going to go around telling people everything, right? Plus, Troy could just leave out a lot of the details. "It's Brett." Troy said. Ryan laughed again. "Well I knew that. You have been talking to him a lot in the past few days. What's going on?" asked Ryan. Troy looked up to make eye-contact with the blonde. "I don't know. I'm just getting the feeling that Brett needs someone in his life, you know? He never mentions his parents; his brother is gone, and... And he's proving that to me by constantly feeling so broken and vulnerable." Troy stated sadly. Ryan shook his head. "He likes you Troy, anyone with eyes can see that." Ryan chuckled. Troy shook his head. "That's not the point. I don't think Brett even wants to be happy anymore. I want him to have a protector! His brother was his protector, and now... Now Brett has no one, and that shocks me!" Troy said anxiously. Ryan nodded in understanding. "Listen, Troy, I'm not a romance expert or anything, but I think that not talking to Principal Matsui about this is bad. It's going to help. And as for whether or not Brett wants to be with you? I can't answer that, only he can. But acting like a jackass isn't going to help your chances." Ryan stated in honestly. "I know. I just thought maybe if I'd pull away a bit, give him space, I would be able to see if he'd be happy more. I know, it's a stupid idea." Troy added in and Ryan shook his head. "No, it makes sense, kind of. But to be honest, I think it backfired on you. Instead of coming after you, he pulled away to see how badly you wanted to comfort him. And to be honest, I understand if Brett wants attention, because he does. I mean, he lost a part of him. Troy, he really looks up to you. You're a good male role-model for him. For everyone." Ryan said happily. Troy looked up at him again. "How do you know?" Troy asked curiously. Ryan actually laughed at this question. "Trust me, I know. And also trust me by saying that the more you don't talk to him, the farther away you're going to push him. I'm not going to tell you what to do, but I hope you do the right thing." Ryan said. Troy nodded and smiled. "Thanks Ryan, this means a lot to me." he said gratefully. Ryan shrugged his shoulders. "Hey, what are friends for, right?" Ryan said. Troy smiled once more before closing his eyes. "Right." he whispered. REST IS TBA After a fun conversation with a few fellow partygoers, Troy walked inside the crowded house. Near the staircase, he turned his head and saw Brett stumbling down the steps with a red plastic cup in his right hand. Once Brett landed at the bottom, his steps were swaggered a little from the alcohol but he tried to to use his legs to go forward. As Brett strutted forward, he tried to project confidence with his walk but tripped. Luckily, Troy grabbed Brett's shoulders to keep him from falling over.
Troy sees Brett

Troy sees a drunken Brett stumbling.

When Brett seemed to steady, Troy quickly took his hands off his shoulders. Brett looked up and his lips formed into a closed-mouth smile. He held a seductive gaze. "Troyyyy, you're here." Brett purred, his words slurring. Troy chuckled softly. He then caught a whiff of alcohol on his new friend's breath. He crinkled his nose. "You okay there, Brett? You look a little... tipsy." Troy said worryingly, holding onto Brett's arm to keep him from falling. He made a mental note to never let Brett drink alcohol — he drank it under-aged, which meant illegally. "I'm fiiiinnnneeee, Troyyyy! Come on." Brett pouted with daring eyes. Troy gently lifted Brett's head off his shoulder and looked around for his afro-haired childhood friend. "Yo, Chad! I thought you said there was no alcohol here, man." Troy yelled. Chad whipped his head to Troy's concerned voice. "There isn't. He must be a total lightweight, man." he responded with a shrug. Troy sighed, running a hand over his face before having to use that same hand to reach out to catch a now swaying Brett. "Brett, you know, maybe I should get you home." Troy said as soon as he turned his attention back to his drunk friend. "Noooo! I wanna stayyyy." Brett whined, pouting his lips. He started pulling Troy's arm to stop him from leaving even though Troy didn't move yet. "Brett, you're drunk. C'mon you need to be in bed where you can't get into any trouble." Troy responded firmly but gently. Before Brett could retort, the blonde-haired boy from earlier piped up for him. "You okay, buddy?" the boy asked with an English accent. "Yeah he is, man. I'm just gonna take him home." Troy assured with a polite smile, holding Brett up. "No, I'll take him home. I'll make sure he's okay. You can go back to the party." the boy said. Troy looked at him. "No, I insist. I don't want any trouble, man. I just thought it was easier for me since I've known him for a while. And you are..?" Troy asked, his eyebrows furrowed. He knew there was no way Brett was going to make it home on his own. "Oh! My name is Andy. I got him by the way. He lives not too far from my house. Can you get him to my car?" Andy said. "Of course, thanks Andy." Troy said with relief. Andy just smiled and stepped up to the other side of Brett as he and Troy both urged Brett to walk, relieved when he seemed to regain his sense of balance. Halfway through the walk to Andy's car Brett almost tripped. Troy was about to save him, but Andy’s hands held out, wrapping around Brett’s waist, directing Brett’s drunken body through the foyer. Once there, there was a swarm of partygoers swarmed, forcing Troy to curse under his breath as they continued on with Andy tried to forge a path for them to follow. They walked out the front door. Troy had never been so thankful to see a car in his life. Immediately doing his part to settle Brett into the passenger seat, Troy was surprised when Brett gripped his shirt as he was straightening and pulled him down towards him. "You're so sexy Troy, did I ever tell you that?" Brett purred, his words slightly slurring. All too aware of his drunken friend's sexual presence, Troy bit his tongue and gently but firmly tore Brett’s grip away from his shirt. Troy glanced around to make sure no one was paying them any attention, his mind telling him that he at least needed to be cautious about the potential rumors from what he was about to do. Within moments of seeing that it was all clear, Troy gently took Brett's hand off his arm and let it drop back down to his side. Troy shook his head. They're friends. He does love Brett but that's a different kind of love — like how he loved Chad. Troy thought he was probably over-thinking it... unless Brett does have some type of feelings for him. No. No way. ...Could he? He wondered. He didn't want Brett to because that would just make things super, super freaking weird... but if he did. Troy guessed he'd just tell Brett that he still wanna be friends... but just that. Friends. Troy’s mind pondering why Brett was so bothered by his statement, and questioning Brett’s romantic interests in him; whether they're real or not. "As much as I am flattered by that remark, I'm sorry Brett, but I think I must have given you the wrong impression somewhere down the line. You're a sweet guy who I enjoy spending time with but only as a friend." Troy stated gently but firmly. Brett furrowed his eyebrows, but then bit his lip coyly. "Friends don't really get all touchy and in each other's space, at least not a lot. What I'm trying to say is that I have a girlfriend, Brett. You know that." Troy stated, not trying to sound mean at all. Brett stared at him for a few moments before it seemed like a light bulb went off in his head. "Is that why you're pulling away from me?" Brett retorted. "That's not it." Troy quickly replied. "That's not it at all actually. I know that where we are today is a result of me also not putting a stop to things before but they need to stop. I want to be your friend Brett, I enjoy hanging out with you, but I just need a bit more personal space when we aren't together, okay?" Troy finished. Surprising him, Brett readily agreed. "I'm sorry." He muttered sadly. "Thanks for understanding." Troy replied. When he started to back away to get the seatbelt, Troy felt a touch on his arm and glanced down to see Brett looking up at him. "There's nothing to be scared of, Brett. In fact..." Troy said as his eyes locked up at Andy. "...This nice guy, Andy, will be taking you home. I hope you enjoyed yourself tonight, Brett. I'm sure you'll feel better in the morning, waking up in your own bed, don't you think?" Troy said, looking back down at a confused and drunk Brett. He smirked. "Get some rest Brett, early morning tomorrow." Troy replied. Quickly, Troy backed up and saw the sympathetic look Andy gave him, making it clear that from his distance he had heard Brett's groan. "He'll hopefully forget he said that in the morning. I know that would embarrass him when he sobers." Andy said, smirking.

Troy going back to the party.

Troy just nodded. "Thanks again, Andy. Do you need help getting him to his house?" He asked. "Nah, we'll be fine. Don't worry about us, promise." Andy replied.


Walking through the hallway of East High, Troy reached his locker. Standing next to his locker was Chad.

Troy on campus.

"What's up, man?" Troy said as they bumped fists and pulled each other into a hug, slapping each other on the back and pulled away. "I'm glad you're going to my party tonight, Hoops." Chad stated. "I know, me too." Troy chuckled. They bumped fists again. "Troy Bolton to the principal's office, Troy Bolton to the principal's office!" a voice said over the loud speaker. Troy and Chad both fist-bumped once more and went their separate ways. Troy walked down the hallway as students come and go. His blue eyes flickered over every student that filed through the hallway, lingering on the people passing by. Troy strolled calmly through the front office, nodding politely and smiled gracefully at several office members.
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Troy on his way to Principal Matsui's office.

Once reaching to the principal's office, Troy heard a male voice talking indistinctly. He took a deep breath and then turned the doorknob and swung the door open. "Sir?" Troy said softly. He looked inside to find the new kid sitting in a chair, clenching a tissue in his hands. "Ah, Troy! Please, come in. Have a seat." Principal Matsui said calmly. Troy closed the door gently behind him. Once done with closing the door, Troy placed his backpack on the ground carefully next to the empty chair next to the new kid. He heard Brett take another deep breath and lets the air out. "Troy..." Principal Matsui began. Troy's body tensed up. He didn't look up at Brett so he walked towards the empty wooden chair slowly, almost terrified. He hesitantly sat down straddling and made eye-contact with the sad Brett. The whites of Brett's eyes were bloodshot, probably from crying, and his brown-colored eyes were piercing once again. Troy wiped the sweat off of his forehead but maintained eye-contact with the concerned Principal. "Troy, it has come to my attention that there is a picture going around the school of..." Principal Matsui stated, motioning to Brett with his eyes. In response, Troy nodded sadly. The principal turned his attention towards the sullen Brett. "Brett? It's okay. We're going to get the person who did this to you." Principal Matsui stated confidently. Troy noticed Brett fidgeting with the silver ring on his middle finger nervously. Staying silent, Troy studied Brett's facial expression, trying to understand why he was feeling the way he was feeling. He also noticed Principal Matsui eyeing him carefully when Brett was looking down. Troy saw hopelessness and sadness and fear in Brett's eyes. He studied Brett's face as if Brett was thinking back on a pain-filled memory. Letting out a dejected sigh, Brett looked down. He looked back up, but turned his head towards Troy this time. When his eyes met Troy's for the briefest of moments, it was enough to show Troy the depths of his pain. He saw the shimmer of tears gathered in Brett’s eyes, and felt his heart that was already in overdrive slowly begin to tear. Instead of saying anything, Troy took that final step down and reached out towards his new friend only to feel a stabbing pain in his chest as the first tear rolled down Brett’s cheek. "Like, it doesn't even matter what you say. Maybe it does, I don't know." Brett said dejectedly, wiping his nose with his finger. "I'm afraid I don't understand." Principal Matsui confessed; confusion spilled on his face. "You know what? Never mind." Brett retorted as he got up from his chair, walking towards the door. Troy would make sure that if Brett walked out that door, he would regret it. As the stubborn boy began to walk, Troy blocked him, preventing him from leaving. Brett tried to push through but he did not budge; he was too strong. Brett tried to get past Troy, but he refused to move. "I'm not going, Brett. Not now. Not after what happened to you." Troy said. He gently hushed him as he wrapped his arms around his distraught friend. "Hey, hey, hey. Look at me. Right at me." Troy whispered. Brett looked up at him. "Shhh, it's okay." Troy whispered as he held Brett close to his body. This was what Brett wanted; he wanted Troy to fear the worst and get to the point of leaving. Brett slowly lifted his head from Troy's chest and he looked into his blue eyes with red and puffy eyes. Tears were free-falling now from Brett's eyes. Troy studied the vulnerable Brett; his broken posture — hurt, pain and sadness. "Just talk to us, Brett. We're trying our best to help you. You can't walk out, bottling up all these feelings. Please, please just... sit down." Troy instructed, motioning towards the wooden chair. "Brett, have a seat. Please." Principal Matsui pleaded, rising up from his seat. It had hurt to say it out loud because it was like reliving it all over again but this time Brett wasn't alone. The stubborn Brett did as he was told and sat down. Troy looked at Brett as he crossed his arms across his chest professionally. "Troy is 100% right, Brett. You're going to get through this. I'm gonna help you. We are going to help you. There are many people out there who want to help you. Brett... it's going to be okay. Principal Matsui assured. Troy caught the panic and fear in his voice. "Now, time for the more serious question: Did this person physically hurt you?" the principal asked. Troy's body immediately tensed up; his fists curled up into tight balls at his sides. Brett sighed and looked up. "No." he simply answered. "High school is a dry run for the rest of your life. It's rough. People can be mean." Principal Matsui. "I... You don't understand. You don't know what this would do to me if my parents find out..!" Brett exclaimed panically. Troy got up from his seat and looked at Brett. "What does that mean?" Troy asked calmly. A puzzled look fell onto Brett's face as his eyes widened. "Nothing. Maybe I'm just overreacting." Brett said softly. "Brett, this kid lays a finger on you or bullies you mentally, you come straight to me, and I will expel him faster than I can write. Okay?" Principal Matsui stated. Brett nodded. REST IS TBA A little while later, with Brett gone, the principal looked to Troy. "Sir, you need to understand something. Something traumatic has happened to Brett, and it's been making him depressed, as we both witnessed. I've been hanging out with him. Seeing him so... vulnerable... so broken hurts me." Troy confessed sympathetically. "I understand that, Troy. I do. But, do you think it’s because of Weston Miller?" Principal Matsui asked. Troy stood up in his chair, feeling sick. "I don’t know, sir. In my opinion, I think it’s something much worse. Something else... something terrible. I feel like something is going on at home that is causing Brett to be closed off and quiet. However, he has no signs of abuse, no bruises or cuts or anything. Sir, Brett told me about what it would be like to die! He’s thinking of hurting himself, sir!" Troy replied, shaking his head in sorrow as his leg shakes. "Oh God! Okay, um... Firstly, Troy, you must calm down. I've called home several times and they say he is fine. At home, he is loud and happy and talks non-stop. He is just not very social at school." stated Principal Matsui. "Do you believe that?" Troy asked, not buying it. "No, we've got no proof of anything being wrong, other than his shyness but that just proves he is a shy boy who doesn't talk much." Principal Matsui said. "With all due respect, sir, I will do my best to help Brett, but if he confides in me his deep, personal secrets, I'm not going to betray that and tell you what he says. But, sir, you've got to respect my choice to keep some things I may find out a secret." Troy said. "Anything that is not life-threatening you can keep quiet, Troy. But if it is child abuse or something more serious, I need you to tell me as soon as possible, is that understood?" Principal Matsui said in a serious tone. Troy nodded in agreement. "He is going to be in class right now. Just keep a close eye on him when you see him, and act like your normal-self, Troy." Principal Matsui said. Troy just nodded. "I will. Thank you, sir." he said. Troy stood up and left. He just hoped he could help Brett. By the way Troy described him, he was worried he'd never be able to help this boy out of his shell.


Troy walked Gabriella home as he did every day. When they got to her house, Gabriella decided to do something abnormal. Taking him by the hand, she led Troy upstairs to her bedroom, certain that he wouldn't push the boundaries once they were there. "I figured my bed would be more comfortable than the couch. I trust you, which is why you're up here." Gabriella explained before he could ask any questions. "We're definitely not up here to—" Gabriella explained. Troy started laughing. "Gabriella, I know! Chill out a little bit. I was getting tired of the couch, too." Troy stated. Suddenly, Gabriella playfully tackled him onto the bed, but he held her waist, pulling her down on top of him. Playfully smirking, Troy rolled her off of him and turned to face her, their faces centimeters apart. Examining her face, Troy was relieved to see her dark brown orbs. Silently, Gabriella wrapped her arms around his back, unable to fight the urge to touch him.

Troy at Gabriella's house.

Smiling, Troy returned the embrace, holding her as close to him as he possibly could. A thought struck Gabriella, causing her to go into a fit of giggles. "You know what you are?" she said. "I know, I'm your boyfriend. What else?" he asked her curiously. "You're like a life-size teddy bear! You're not stuffed, but every time I see you I just want to hold you tightly. You're good for comfort, and you have a soft, warm heart when it comes to others, especially me." she gushed. "That better not be—" Troy groaned. "That'll be your new nickname!" Gabriella smiled flirtatiously. Troy groaned again. "Gabi, why must you do this to me? I look nothing like a stuffed bear!" he complained. "You might have a well-toned body..." she replied, running her finger down his chest through his shirt for emphasis. "But, on the inside, you're soft, cute, kind-hearted, sweet and cuddly, just like a teddy bear." Gabriella gushed.
Looking into her eyes, Troy knew he would surrender the argument. He could never argue with her, for he always caved. He sighed. "Fine, but you can only call me that when we're alone, but not at school whether we're alone or not." Troy stated. "Aw, but why not? I let you call me sweetheart, baby and angel everywhere we go, alone or not." she pointed out. "That's because none of them are going to embarrass you." he replied, placing his hand on her shoulder, but she pouted. "You're no fun," she complained, though she loosened up when Troy kissed her nose. "But, you still love me!" he told her, a teasing smile plastered on his face. "And, I love you no matter how many times you tell me I'm no fun." Troy smiled charmingly. Gabriella poked her tongue out at him, but as she did, Troy's soft lips came crashing down on hers and soon both were involved in a heated lip-lock. Her hands found their way to his hair, ruffling it while their lips moved together. Smiling, Troy watched as a slight blush emerged on her face, something that he only had the power to do. Once Gabriella removed his shirt, with his help, the couple laid back down. Nestling into his chest as he held her tightly, Gabriella let out a pleased sigh. Although his hugs always gave her comfort, this one seemed different. She felt calmed more than any other time, she guessed because it was almost skin-on-skin, the closest they had ever been to each other. After a few seconds, Troy nuzzled his head into her hair, loving the feel of her body pressed against his bare chest. Like Gabriella, he too sensed a difference between their normal time together and what was going on right now. He felt the bond between them growing everyday, but, in that moment, he felt as though the connection was as strong as it possibly could be without having sexual relations. "Think we'll stay like this?" Gabriella asked him quietly, snapping him out of his thoughts. "I hope." he answered, rubbing her back. "So, you'll always be my teddy bear?" she asked him, smiling innocently. "I will as long as you don't call me that in public." Troy chuckled. Gabriella pouted but finally nodded. "Fine, as long as you still act like my teddy bear in public." she stated. "Do teddy bears look as hot as me?" Troy asked, smirking. Gabriella laughed and playfully smacked his shoulder. "Way to ruin the moment!" she giggled. "Fine, then! Don't speak to me! You should've known that question was coming! But, I still want an answer." Troy defended. Gabriella rolled her eyes. "Yes, Troy, you're hotter than a teddy bear." Gabriella smirked. "Thought so." Troy grinned selfishly.


The Start of Something NewEdit


"That was the new kid you were helping at school, wasn't it?" she asked. Troy looked up and cocked his chin in surprise. "You mean Brett? Yeah. He's a shy kid, Mom." Troy said. "And he goes to East High too, doesn't he?" she asked, trying to remember. Troy creased up his eyes as he frowned in confusion. "Yeah." he said, trying to keep his voice complacent. She smoothed her apron as she came to stand opposite him on the other side of the kitchen island. "I hope you're being nice to him." she said, searching through a grocery bag. He couldn't contain the scoff that built up in his throat. "Of course I am, Mom. I talked to him when he was alone during lunch on his first day, remember?" Troy said, chuckling lightly. "You know that's not what I meant." she conceded. He sighed. "He's a strong person, Ma. I mean, god, he must have to be... But honestly?" Troy muttered towards the end. "Honestly...?" Lucille smiled. "Honestly... I worry about Brett, and I don't always know why. There are so many jerks who are practically waiting for the opportunity to bully him — make fun of him... I just... Can't stand the idea of it." Troy said truthfully. His mother could read him like a book and he'd always been a mommy's boy. Lucille rounded the island and pulled her son into a hug, her arms around him tightly. "You're a good person, Troy." she said, his mouth at his shoulder. "You're a beautiful person. You care for those who need caring for — and most of all, you do it because you want to." She pulled back enough to look into his eyes, pushing his bangs back and kissing his forehead. He squirmed playfully but didn't protest to her comfort. "And most of all, you're not just that—" She smoothed his hair back. "—You're also a man. A strong, brave, kind man." Lucille finished. "Mom—" Troy smiled, touched. "Now — I know, I'm your mom, I'm inclined to say that — but... it's true." She smiled as she stepped back and went to pick up a magazine. She turned back to him as he busied himself with groceries to stop the emotion he felt from spilling onto his features. "Troy?" she said. Troy looked up but said nothing. "If you really do care about Brett — don't spend the rest of your senior year in silence! From what I know, this boy is lonely — and undeserving of it. He has a disposition that makes him different... Please don't be the one to treat him like he is..." Lucille said but stopped. Troy paused but gave her look that said he was listening — interested. "If you don't want all those jerks to get to Brett, especially Weston Miller..." she paused as he smoothed his arm. "Then... don't let them." she finished. He smiled. "I've met Brett's parents a few times and from what I could tell from his mom, Brett's a lot more fragile than you think. What with his past and all, he has literally zero self-esteem... Which means..." Lucille said. Troy folded his arms over his chest, intrigued. "Which means?" he asked. "Which means every little thing you've done in the past to effect a new kid will most likely affect Brett a completely different way... From the experience I've had at the hospital with people in similar situations, I can guarantee he'll be worried to death about how people see him — his past, his reputation — every single second that he's with you... And, sadly.. that may never go away..." Lucille said sympathetically. Troy felt her words hit him deep, deep with his chest, making him ache helplessly. "Never? But Mom, if that's the case, then how do I...? What do I do? How is that possible?" Troy asked desperately. "This is not just self-consciousness for him, honey. I should think this trauma has haunted Brett just about every moment since he was old enough to think..." She paused for a moment, taking in her son's deeply concentrated and interested look. "Just..." she sighed. "—every person is special, and all every person wants is to be made feel exactly that by the people they love — and I imagine that can only be exceedingly true for Brett..." Lucille sighed. He agreed and understood what she was saying, and could feel her trying to imprint it into his brain. He felt his conscience soaking up her words like a sponge. Before he could stop himself though, curiosity got the better of him. "What is it that's wrong with Brett, exactly? I mean, he acts happy... with him being jovial when he's around me... shy too – from what I've noticed anyway — and that's why he feels lonely... right? ...I've never seen anything like it..." Troy said. "I couldn't tell you what trauma he has been through if I wanted to, honey. It's a deep and dark part of him and only he can tell you... Trust me." Lucille calmly stated. He looked like he was planning something. "Just..." she started. Troy looked up. "Be careful with him, Troy." Lucille said calmly. He nodded and she walked into the garden.


Troy in class.

Troy decided to stop by the bathroom. As soon as Troy set one foot into the restroom, it took him a split second to hear the muffled sobbing. He could hear someone sobbing. These weren't just little tears of sadness. What he could hear – and see as he stood in the doorway of the bathroom – were body-shaking, energy-draining, heart-breaking sobs. Sobs filled with grief, loss and despair. Another split second to hear a small gasp and the sniffing that comes when you try to stop crying, and yet another second to decide that he was not going to walk right back out the door. With a strong obligation taking hold of him, Troy walked over to one of the stalls and lightly pushed it open without even knocking first. There, sitting, Brett was curled up in a ball leaning against the wall and hiding his head in his knees. Troy stared at Brett taken aback by the strength of Brett’s reaction, confused. Brett looked devastated, broken, no light in his eyes. Brett quickly looked up, holding his breath, the tears still running down his face. Tears ran unceasingly from his eyes, spreading down his cheeks. His eyes were reddened and raw and bloodshot and caught somewhere between sad and horror. Brett weeps softly but desperately gasps for breath.

Troy hearing someone crying.

"Brett? Brett, what is it? What happened?" Troy asked, his voice full of concern. The brunette male carefully walked over and lowered himself onto the floor beside the broken boy. The saddened Asian boy sniffled and looked up, seeing Troy's deep cerulean eyes and shook his head. "Brett? Hey, come here..." Troy whispered as he slid down next to him on the floor, pulling the struggling boy into his arms. "What's wrong?" Troy asked gently. "Nothing..." Brett gasped between sobs, fighting to get away from the worried jock. Troy ignored his stubbornness, pulling his head to his chest, letting Brett grab his shirt. He soon stopped fighting. Troy studied Brett as his sobs began to subside. "Brett? What happened?" Troy whispered calmly. He would be lying if he said that he wasn't feeling the awkwardness of the situation, he barely knew Brett Shimura and here he was being Brett’s personal shoulder to cry on. In spite of all this, he couldn't deny Brett his help, the moment he saw Brett crying he knew if he didn't assist Brett, he would be all alone and if Troy was taught one thing as a child, it was that no one deserves to be alone. "I can't." Brett whispered into his chest. "Can't what? Brett, I can't help you if you don't tell me what is going on." Troy said soothingly. "Leave me alone! Just leave me alone, Troy. You should just go." Brett spat coldly. "Is that what you want?" Troy asked carefully. Something made him think that it was so much more than that. "Yes!" Brett explained, pushing Troy off of him. A shocked Troy studied Brett’s broken expression. "Brett, tell me what is going on. Please." Troy begged. The tears were still flowing down Brett’s cheeks, leaving behind wet trails of tears. He shook his head so fast it was almost violent, quickly backing away from him. Troy didn't know what it was, but the second Brett Shimura looked him dead in the eye he knew he wouldn't be able to deny Brett. There was something about those big brown eyes that left him heart-broken. Something horrible. He obviously wasn't getting through to Brett well enough, he tried another strategy. "What kind of friend would I be if I just let you stay here all by yourself, crying? That would mean I don't care about you, right? But I'm not that person; never have been and never will be. I don't know how you could think you could be fine after looking like this..." Troy replied, holding up his index finger to signal one second to Brett before he switched their position so he was leaning against the toilet and his back was pressed against the cold wall. "Brett, please tell me what is going on. Did something happened? Are you hurt?" he told Brett. The broken Asian turned quick and took a deep breath. He looked down at the ground, feeling his tears coming on again. Troy knew Brett was hoping he would buy the fact that there was nothing wrong. He knew Brett didn't want to talk about the real reason. "Brett, I know something is making you bottle up. Please tell me." Troy begged desperately. Brett said nothing. "Whatever happens, happens and it's for the best. And before you even say what you are thinking, it's going to be okay because I will listen to you a million and one times if I have to, as long as you're okay. It's my job to make people happy and smile. You know what the best part is, Brett? You get to share this experience with your new best friend in the world, no matter what the outcome." Troy said, looking down at Brett as he finished his monologue. Brett sighed when Troy nudged him softly, and he looked back at him.

Troy after seeing a crying Brett.

When Brett was showing no signs of moving after a couple of minutes, Troy began to think. He knew Brett was depressed. There was something else and he knew it. Troy examined the broken Asian boy. When Brett didn't stop crying, Troy then crouched down in front of him so he could catch Brett’s eye. "Shh, just relax. Take a breath, Brett. Please." Troy instructed gently. Brett wiped his eyes so he could clearly see his friend’s face. They took a deep breath together, Brett's breath breaking in the middle. "Okay, good. Another." Troy instructed. They breathed again, Brett successfully completing the deep breath that time. "One more. Good. Okay." Troy said. This attempt to make Brett feel better, to keep him calm, and Troy hoped it would work, at least for the moment. Tears still streamed from Brett's eyes. Troy took hold of his wrist and guided it down to reveal the poorly-hidden expression. Brett flinched a bit at Troy's touch. He was heart-broken to see Brett frozen in place with silent tears streaming down his cheeks. Brett looked so broken and it immediately crumbled Troy's resolve. Brett began trembling as he tried to contain his sobs, which Troy was quick to notice. Troy simply sat there, holding Brett's hand as Brett continued crying. He looked at Troy with desperation in his eyes. Troy tried to capture Brett's attention. "Brett, you got to stop bottling up your feelings. You have to listen to your heart. The person inside you is screaming and you're trying to press him back." Troy said in a careful tone. Brett proceeded to cry. Troy felt a sharp, unwelcome pain in his heart and as he had known all along, it hurt when he realized how sad Brett really was. Brett began to tremble even harder. With his lips quivering and tears running down his face, Brett breathed before composing himself. "Please, Brett." was all Troy said in response as he studied Brett. Without hearing an answer, Troy shook his head in defiance — his face softening. "You're not fine, Brett. You won't be for a long time if you don't tell me. And even though I don't know you as well as I would like, I know some things." Troy said. "Troy—" Brett whispered. "You're going to hold this in, maybe because you want to protect your image, or maybe because you are scared to death of facing the truth." Troy said. "Stop—" Brett protested. "But it is going to eat away at you until you can't take it anymore. You will continue to alienate everyone around you, thinking that you are doing what you need to do in order to protect them." Troy continued. Brett looked at him through his teary eyes, wishing he would stop. "In reality, all you will really be doing is hurting yourself even more. You will break one day into unfixable pieces and you won't be able to stop it." Troy said. Brett looked down at the floor, not saying a word. "Well if you knew him, you'd understand. Chad is a—" Troy said, but was cut off. "Let me guess, Chad is a real special friend and to him you're his buddy; his best friend and when Chad plays with you it's like..." Brett retorted bitterly. "Even though you're not moving, you feel like you're alive, because that's how he sees you." he finished wistfully. "How did you know that?" Troy asked, blinking. "Because... Jason was just the same, he was my whole world." Brett choked out. "Y— You never forget a brother like Jason... but they forget you." Brett whispered out at the end, gripping his hands tightly. Troy had just processed that Brett’s brother had died and he knew Brett didn't like to talk about him. And now that Brett was, Troy wasn't going to let him down. Troy sat there, utterly speechless. He opened his mouth to talk but nothing came out. Brett composed himself. "Brett, I know your brother was important to you. I know I can’t take away your pain, but I am truly, very, very sorry for your loss." Troy said, showing remorse in his tone. He felt remorse for Brett because he had been put through hell at such a young age and the pain clearly ate away at him. And Troy felt remorse for him because he didn't want this to dominate his life. "But one thing is for sure: you are never, ever alone. No matter where we go in life, no matter what happens, you will always have people who love you to lean on, to call, anything. You will never be alone." Troy said vehemently as he studied the vulnerable Brett. "And second of all, you know what?" Troy said, looking down at Brett and Brett shrugged his shoulders. The distraught Asian boy gently wiped away some of his tears with his hands. "He's there. Jason will always be there with you." That was all Troy said for a moment, letting it sink in. And he meant every word he said. "Jason will be there, he has the best brother ever... You. He'll be there, cheering you on, Wildcat. He'll be watching right in front of you while you live your life of awesomeness. He'll watch while you get your diploma and he will watch with pride by your parents when the class is announced and you throw your graduation cap in the air. He is always here, that is something I know, and I can promise you 100% everywhere else after that for the rest of your life. He's been with you the whole time. In fact..." Troy stopped for a second as Brett wiped more tears away from his tear-stained face. "I bet he's next to us right now, threatening me not to hurt you in his head and wishing you wouldn't cry. He is telling me that everything will be okay." Troy said proudly when Brett shifted. "You are far too young to experience this traumatic thing. I might not have known you for as long as I wish I had, but it seems to me that in your short life, you taught so many people so much – about strength, hope, friendship, bravery... you are the epitome of a warrior. You're fighting a long, hard battle with the loss of your brother and you, Brett – you have so much living left to do. You're strong, you're brave... you're stubborn! You have many years ahead of you, filled with dream after dream I have no doubt you will achieve. I also have no doubt that what you are going through will allow you to help others in the future. You're destined for big things, Brett, and I hope you know that Jason is right there in your heart through every goal that you reach, cheering you on and making sure he knows that that brave guy right there... he's with you." Troy said in a optimistic tone. Brett smiled amusingly. "Tell you what..." Troy began, placing his hand over his as Brett looked at him. "After this conversation, think about your brother and imagine it's him protecting you, not me. And you'll be able to feel how proud he is. Trust me." Troy finished. Brett smiled a little, slowly nodding his head; his dark chocolate brown eyes glistening slightly. 

Troy comforting a depressed Brett.

"Whoa, stop right there, Wildcat." Troy placed his hand on Brett's face to make him look at him and took one of his hands. "Remember: it's not your fault and don't blame yourself because, it isn't your fault about what happened to Jason. I just don't want you to hurt yourself because... it hurts me that you're in pain and it also hurts me to know that I wasn't there for you when your brother died. I want you to know that, like I said before, no matter what happens, people will be there right by your side because that's where they want to be and they want you to know that you can always come to them even when you're trying to be strong. My arms are always opened for you if you just need to let out a cry because Brett, breaking points are not very healthy and it hurts me watching you have that breaking point. And please don't ever think that you don't deserve anyone because you do." Troy stated. Brett had tears in his eyes as he looked in Troy's eyes who also had tears in them because he hated that Troy thought he wasn't good enough for him so Brett wiped away the tears away from his face with the pad of his thumbs. Troy slowly pulled away but rested his hand on Brett’s shoulder. Brett nodded his head before opening his eyes to look in his.
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Troy giving a genuine smile.

Troy gave Brett a genuine smile before pulling away from him. Brett nodded his head with a small smile on his face before looking at him. "Having me as your friend, it's my job to make sure that you're feeling safe and respected. So that will be my mission. What do you say that we go finish a school day of being optimistic?" Troy offered proudly. Brett smiled, nodding his head. Troy, finally giving Brett the acceptance he's craved and needed for so long, then exchange glancesit's a poignant moment that most definitely hints at a beautiful friendship. "You won't be sad forever, Brett." Troy said sincerely, still noticing deep sadness in Brett's eyes.


The next morning at school, Troy looked tired and emotionally drained, barely speaking two words as he rustled through his locker for the books he needed for the morning. Gabriella, Chad and Taylor exchanged a concerned glance. "Hey what's up, Captain – are you okay? You look a little out of it... is it Brett? Is he okay?" Chad asked. Troy closed his eyes for a moment, pinching the bridge of his nose between his thumb and forefinger before turning to face his friends. "Yeah, it's Brett... He told me about his brother, Jason... He died. Brett's taken it pretty hard... he's a bit of a mess." Troy replied. "Oh man, that sucks. I'm sorry, dude." Chad said solemnly. "Poor Brett. Jason must’ve been the best brother to him." Taylor sighed sadly. "Do you think Brett would be up for Tay and I to hang out him this afternoon? Or would we be better off leaving him to have some space for a few days?" Gabriella asked sympathetically. Troy shook his head. "To be honest, I think Brett could use all the support we can give him right now. He's going through a bit of a down patch and letting him know we are here for him can only help." Troy responded. Chad and Taylor nodded their agreement. "My Mom is heading over here later. She said something about taking some chick-flick DVD's over to donate for the Children’s Hosital fundraiser, so hopefully she and I can talk and keep Brett's mind off things. I might give my Mom a call before-hand at lunch time and see how Brett is." Troy said. "You know, man..." Chad commented, placing a hand on his best friend's upper back. "You are one pretty awesome guy. We can all see how Brett has been so strong through everything but you man... you've been just as strong for him." Chad finished. "He's right, Troy." Taylor added. "No one could ever question your commitment to that boy. It must be so hard to sit by and watch Brett suffer but I would be willing to bet that the thought of walking away from it all has never even once crossed your mind." Taylor finished. "Brett Shimura is a lucky Wildcat, Troy." Gabriella said. Troy looked at his friends and his girlfriend, chills running down both of their spines at the sincerity in his eyes and emotion in his voice. Later, Troy is at his locker, getting his notebook. He stares at a picture of a smiling Gabriella pinned inside the locker door. He closed the locker door and began to aimlessly wander down the crowded halls of East High. He smiled warmly as he made his way through the crowds of people, who ogled him. His cerulean orbs lock on a scrawny boy about to fall, Troy’s gripped around the boy’s arm, and gently pulled him up. "Whoa, buddy are you– Brett? Are you okay?" Troy asked in genuine concern. Brett looked up into the ocean-blue eyes of Troy. "Brett?" Troy asked in concern. "What?" Brett replied sharply. Troy stood looking at Brett in stunned silence. He grabbed Brett into a tight hug. "Shh!" he started rubbing Brett’s back in circles. "Everything is going to be okay. It's only been two weeks since you moved here. Things will get better." Troy stated sympathetically. Brett looked up at him with tears in his eyes. "How would you know? You don't know me that well, Troy." Brett cried. "From what I heard about you, I think you are awesome." Troy looked down at him. Brett sat up from him wiping his tears with curiosity in his eyes, "What are you talking about, Golden Boy?" he asked. "You know, I like you calling me Golden Boy, but anyways, you are coming to me for help and I'm proud to announce that the new boy is my new best friend." Troy said proudly. Brett looked at him like he was crazy. Troy looked down at him. "I've officially made my decision and I know that this is the right decision. You need someone else in your life that will be there for you when the other people in your life aren't around and I will be that someone. So what do you say?" Troy asked proudly. Brett smiled half-heartedly. "You're wrong, you know." Troy smiled. "About what?" Brett asked in confusion. "You‘re fearing that no one will be there for you. That's not true, Brett. The people who love you will be here when nobody else will, okay? That is a promise." Troy assured. Brett gave Troy a shy smile, and the two walked down the hall in silence. "Just remember, you don't have to do anything you're not comfortable with. Trust your heart first and head second." Troy said in a calm tone. "Okay." Brett muttered simply. Troy sighed. "You okay, Brett?" he asked in a genuinely worried tone. Brett nodded. Troy half-smiled. "Can you look at me, please?" Troy asked in a soft tone. Brett looked at him hesitantly. Troy crossed his eyes and stuck out his tongue. Almost instantly, Brett snickered at Troy's silly face. Troy used his thumbs to pull his lips out and then his pointer fingers to pull down his eyelids. Again Brett giggled. His squeezed his eyes shut and scrunched up his nose. To top it off, Troy lifted the tip of his nose and started to snort like a pig. Brett just chuckled. He looked up at Brett with a soft giggle. "Whenever you're ready to talk about something that's bothering you, just let me know. I'll listen, Wildcat." Troy responded with a charming smile. A blushed Brett nodded at him. "Hey, it's our favorite New Kid." Chad called out, smiling. Brett blushed, making Troy chuckle. "How are you today, cutie?" Taylor asked. "Are you okay, Brett?" Gabriella asked in a nurturing tone. "He's just having a rough morning, guys. Let's give him some space." Troy said gently. The gang nodded and they went to Homeroom. “Nothing is wrong, Troy.” Brett smoothingly reassured, but it was a lie. Troy sighed and squeezed his eyes shut. He opened his eyes and nodded. “Just tell me this: Are you really okay?” Troy asked in concern. “I’m fine. Really.” Brett whispered in a reassuring tone. "Okay, Wildcat. I just... I care about you. I'm super proud of the way you opened up to me about your brother. You trusted me enough to tell me about yourself, and what you are going through. From what you’ve told me so far Brett, you took a huge step. I'm so proud of you. I know it doesn't seem like much, but you're doing amazing. You're slowly but surely healing." Troy replied, smiling proudly. Brett nodded. "Now let’s be positive, Wildcat. Basketball practice is next." Troy said. Brett nodded. "Gabriella would understand. She won’t be mad at you.” Troy insisted. "What about the others?" Brett whispered. Troy scoffed light-heartedly. "Yes, them too, buddy." Troy smiled proudly. "I’m sorry, Troy. I just want you to..." Brett paused mid-sentence, taking a deep breath to try and regain his composure. He gulped, turning pale. "Brett, you know you don't have to hide your feelings, don't you? Bottling them up never ends well." Troy said, his voice calm and soothing. Brett’s cheerful expression quickly demolished, and turned to deep sadness. "I know it's hard to fathom sometimes, but you have to believe that there is always something positive that changes someone's bad day, always." Troy said in a cheerful tone. Brett smiled amusingly. All he wanted was to help Brett. He wanted Brett to be happy all the time, not just when leaving school. But there was something going on at home that was stopping that, something was going on to prevent Brett from being happy all the time. There were no physical signs of abuse and from what he knew, there were clear signs of mental abuse.


Being a good-hearted person seemed to excite Troy more than most. He loved meeting and greeting, filling days where he would normally only have boredom with something he could accomplish, and most importantly, he loved helping people.. His thoughts were interrupted by the approaching voice of his mother as she made her way into the kitchen where he dithered. "Troy, why are you doing all your homework at the kitchen and you're just standing here? You lazy butt!" she exclaimed before hitting him hard on the bicep. Troy let out a lazy laugh and rubbed his arm excessively, pretending to be hurt. "Actually Ma, I'm on a three minute break. And considering you love me so much, I'm sure you won't mind granting me that." Troy said with a charming smile. Lucille rolled her eyes as she turned to place empty and dirty plates on the side to be cleaned. "So, to what do I owe this pleasure, Ma?" he asked, feeding her a crooked grin. "Have you talked to Brett?" she asked casually, leaning against the free kitchen counter. He turned and leant against the wall opposite her, sipping water from his glass. "Yeah. Why?" Troy asked, worried. Lucille squinted playfully at him. "I was going to ask you the same question." She looked down and smoothed her apron. "I mean, I know I only met Brett yesterday, but seriously. The way I described him though, he seemed fine, better than fine actually. You know, it sounds like he seemed perfectly... himself. And he stayed that way all the way though 'till today in the bathroom... He suddenly looked really upset and he hasn't been the same happy person since..." Troy faded at what he was saying and stood in silence. Lucille looked at him. "I haven't known him that long, Mom. I mean, I've seen him 'round school for two days now, but I've never really hung out with him until today, and after the thing with—" he sighed and rubbed his hands down his face. "What thing with who-now?" she exclaimed. "Let's just say — When I happened to walk in on the scene I heard crying and a very broken person..." he said, gravely. "Oh, Troy..." Lucille said as she put a hand down on the counter. She began pacing toward the exit. "So what was it that happened after this thing with whatever happened?" Lucille asked. "Guess." Troy said. She stood still, turning back towards him, deliberately saying nothing. Troy sighed. "Brett basically broke down — more than a little bit... I feel so... awful about it all, Ma. Really, I do. He does so well to be so composed and happy from what I've seen in the past day." He ran a hand through his hair, frustrated. "He doesn't deserve any of this shit!" he quietly exclaimed. Suddenly he slammed a palm onto the countertop, hard, startling her. "I mean god — he cried, Ma!" he paused, looking at her, forlorn, grabbing his fringe, hard. "Brett cried!" he said, his voice cracking at the word. "Brett sobbed on me." he paused, looking down at the floor. "On me for christ sake! — Someone he only really met a day ago — it was like... like he didn't have anyone else. I mean... Me? Really...?" He sighed, hoping for some womanly incite from his mother. When he received none, he placed a palm to his forehead, exasperated, as he carried on explaining. "He was shaking, and he tried to tell me that— He tried to speak about... But he was so upset and broken that I could tell he tried to get the freakin' words out!" Troy sighed deeply. Lucille shook her head and cast him a sympathetic look as he dropped his head gravely, closing his eyes. "That's awful Troy." she said, before suddenly switching to anger again at the sight of a distressed Troy and the thought of a broken Brett. "That boy — It sounds like he's been through something traumatic—" Troy stopped her, and shook his head. "Tell me about it." he said. He rubbed his face and groaned before chuckling, patting her on the shoulder in agreement. "Oh, Troy. Brett's going to be so happy when he realizes he practically has you there." Lucille said. Troy squinted at her, looking sideways at her. "Pff! Please! He does not—" Troy sighed. "Oh stop already! We both know he is depressed — has depression — and honestly I'm not too sure how I feel about tha—" Lucille chuckled lightly. He shook his head and waved her off quickly, rolling his eyes. "I'm not talking anymore about this with you, Ma." Troy replied stubbornly. "Troy, Yo—" Lucille called out. "Nope." he interrupted as he began to pick up his tray and walk through the kitchen towards the staircase.



Troy lying on his bed.

In his bedroom, Troy lays on his bed, thinking. He gets up and walks to the bathroom. Out on the basketball court in his backyard, Troy sighed as another ball missed the hoop. That had been the eighth one in a row that didn't go through the net. He heard the porch door open and looked up to see his mom come out. He sat up as she approached him. Lucille slowly took a seat next to her son.

Troy shooting free-throws.

"I was watching you from the kitchen window. I haven't seen you miss that many shots in a long time. What's up?" Lucille asked. "It's nothing, just bad luck I guess." Troy replied, faking a smile. "I'm your mom; I think I know you better than that." Lucille said. Troy paused. "It's... it's about Brett." Troy stammered. "What about Brett, honey?" Lucille asked. Troy gave up and collapsed onto the grass.

A frustrated Troy on the grass.

"Well, I really care about him... but he didn't tell me why he’s felt hurt... He lost his brother recently and I pity him. I was friendly with him, but he kept bawling his eyes out over his brother, and I want to be there for him. I failed him. Mom, you should've seen the look on his face yesterday." Troy admitted, but didn't tell her what Brett had told him that morning. "Troy... What happened to Brett is not your fault. Okay? Everyone handles things differently." said Lucille. "Yeah, I guess..." Troy said smirking lightly. "Why was Brett crying in the boys' bathroom yesterday?" Lucille asked. "Mom, it's about his brother... His brother died, and Brett feels like he has no one. I have a feeling something bad happened. Brett just told me that he felt so lonely, because of what happened to his brother. I don't even know why he would even say that, Mom. He never mentions his parents..." Troy said fearfully. Lucille was silent for a minute, taking in her son's words. "Just give Brett some time, Troy, I bet he'll come around." she said. "I hope so." Troy sighed.

The next day, Troy is at his locker, picking out a notebook for his class.

Troy at his locker.

He slammed his locker door shut and looked up to see a sullen Brett walking down the hallway. Troy sighed deeply, shutting his eyes. "Hi, Troy!" Sharpay squealed with delight. Troy forced a chuckle, and smiled politely. "I realized I haven't offered my congratulations!" she said happily. "Oh, thank you. Um... I'm glad the season's over, so..." Troy answered timidly. "Pfft! I didn't mean basketball, silly. I meant Brett." Sharpay simply said.

Troy talking to Sharpay.

"What about Brett?" Troy asked in an anxious tone. He sighed and squeezed his eyes shut. He knew Brett was grieving over the loss of his brother, but he also knew he wanted to understand it. If Troy pushed too hard, he'd lose Brett and all the trust he had worked so hard to gain. He had promised himself he'd tell someone about Brett's past once he found out all of what it was, but that would break any and all trust Brett had in him. He was loyal to a fault. He knew his decision could risk him getting kicked off the mentoring program, but he honestly didn't care. He opened his eyes and nodded. "Okay, just tell me, Sharpay, please." Troy begged nonchalantly. "Well, for starters: Brett Shimura is a manipulative, attention-seeking boy who fabricated basically his entire life. His brother's death? Suffering from 'deep depression'? Hell, he's a better actor than I am." Sharply answered, almost shocked at what she said herself. Troy forced a fake smile, but immediately furrowed his brows, looking oblivious and confused. "I don't know what you're talking about." Troy said truthfully. "Everyone else does. The whole school is buzzing. Apparently he's very good at acting, Troy. I'm shocked he got everyone, including you, to believe in every word he said. The affection for his brother, who supposedly died a year ago? For him, I'll admit, he's good at creating sick stories like that. I will have to tell Principal Matsui, not for his true nature, but for everyone's own safety." Sharpay said in a timid voice. "Sharpay, enough! I didn't want to have to do this but you left me no choice." Troy growled. "What are you talking about?" she asked.
"Don't make me say it Shar, not in front of everyone. I don't want to but if you don't stop, I'll have to." Troy said as anger built in the tone of his calm-toned voice. "Say what?" Sharpay asked again. "You know what I'm talking about. Making up lies about Brett; trying to manipulate me. You have no right to that, Sharpay! You have no idea what anyone is going through, especially Brett. But, I can't say. I'm been sworn to secrecy. Sharpay, you know what I'm talking about — that's all that matters." Troy growled. Sharpay shrugged. "I'm not doing anything wrong, Troy. I'm just stating facts." she said in defense. "No, you're being a bully. You're saying hurtful things and making up stories that you know will upset Brett, and how it will affect him. He's been through so much trauma already, and you don't have the right to turn it into something worse. So stop it before I say what I really don't want to say." Troy said in anger. "I don't care if you have a girlfriend, Troy. I really don't anymore. I am just stating facts about the new kid." Sharpay said. Troy glared at her but shook his head. He was loyal to a fault and no matter how mad he was, he wasn't going to reveal her secret to everyone. It didn't feel right. "No." Troy said simply. He knew he made the right choice. "Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to find Gabriella." Troy said strongly. "Well, I'll see you at rehearsal. Toodles!" Sharpay squealed happily as she walked away. As Troy sighed, he walked in the opposite direction, and his cerulean orbs lingered onto people walking by. Suddenly, someone grabbed him by the arm. "Troy, something is wrong with Brett. I know bits and pieces from last night, but I know for a fact that something happened to Brett, stopping him from opening up. When we were comforting him last night, he mentioned someone named Jason, and I remember you talking about a Jason." Gabriella whispered. "Yes, it's true, Brie. Brett did have a brother named Jason, who... Who died before Brett moved here." Troy whispered without hesitation. Gabriella was dumbfounded. "So... Jason was the only person who ever protected him and loved him? Quite frankly, I feel like something else is going on. I don't know, maybe, there are no signs pointing to what I'm assuming but I could be wrong." Gabriella said hesitantly. They both look at each other. Troy often found himself wondering what was truly going on in Brett's mind. He would ask himself this question until he thought his head was going to explode but that didn't matter because Troy would never get to know the answer. So once Troy realized that this task was unsuccessful he would move on to trying to convince himself that he had actually done the right thing. It had been 24 hours since Brett had so much as looked at Troy and even though he felt like this was probably a bad decision Troy felt like he had to do something.

Troy kissing Gabriella on the cheek.

He pecked a kiss Gabriella on the cheek, before winking at her. Gabriella looked up and instantly smiled. Troy's eyes was full of pity and guilt. "Gabriella, I'm gonna talk to Brett after school." Troy said with the seriousness of the situation clearly distinguishable. Gabriella chewed at her lip, trying her best not to falter under Troy's gaze. "Troy... Be careful. Brett is dealing with a lot." Gabriella said a little shaky. Troy looked at her, knowing she was 100% right. "You know, I keep finding myself wondering what is going on in Brett's mind; what he's thinking. What is really going on in his home-life. I just need an answer." Troy said with such emotion in his voice. Looking around, Troy made sure no one heard what he said. Looking back at Gabriella, Troy saw she had a look of shock on her face. "Make him happy again, Troy. He needs it." Gabriella said sincerely. Troy winked at her before departing.

Get'cha Head in the GameEdit


"Brett, you haven't slept in days." Troy shot back, regretting the tone of his voice but knowing of no other way to get through to him. "You haven't slept, you've barely eaten, you're behaving erratically, and you won't talk about it or accept that Jason is gone... Brett, you're losing touch with reality." He forced himself to lower his voice as he saw tears forming in Brett's eyes. "I'm really worried about you, Brett. Everything that's happened in the past few days, it's too much... You're falling apart, and I don't know how to help you. I'm afraid for you, afraid of what's happening to you." Troy paused. "My mom took the morning off and made an appointment with a psychiatrist that specializes in post-traumatic stress disorder... You can talk to her yourself, or we can do it together — whatever you want. I just... need you to be okay again." Troy said. He'd expected Brett to argue or try to explain away his actions, but he didn't. His eyes locked with Troy's. Brett nodded mutely, seeming finally to accept what was happening to him. Troy could only hope that that was the case, because he couldn't bear to consider the alternative.


"Troy, your friend is suffering from severe post-traumatic stress disorder." Dr. Sheldon told Troy as she closed the door of her office. "I, of course, can't reveal specific details of the conversation that I had with Brett when you weren't in the room, but I trust that this diagnosis does not come as a surprise to you." she went on. Troy shook his head. "There are three categories of symptoms for this disorder." Dr. Sheldon explained. "The first is intrusive memories — mainly flashbacks and nightmares. The second is avoidance and emotional numbing — refusing to talk about the traumatic events, avoiding events that were previously enjoyed, trouble concentrating, and hopelessness about the future. And the third category is anxiety and increased emotional arousal. That includes irritability, anger, self-destructive behavior, trouble sleeping, being easily frightened, and hearing or seeing things that aren't there." Dr. Sheldon said. "So Brett is exhibiting symptoms from all three categories." Troy concluded quietly.

Troy at the psychologist office.

"Under normal circumstances, I'd consider admitting him for further psychiatric testing, but tomorrow is a holiday, and our office will be closed on Friday, so I don't think that's the right option at the moment. But I would strongly advise against leaving Brett alone for the next few days. And don't try to force him to talk about what he's feeling. Acknowledge his fears, let him know you're there for him, but don't push. Keep things as light and normal as possible around him." Dr. Sheldon continued. Troy nodded. "Brett is afraid to sleep, because the nightmares are terrifying him. The lack of sleep is exacerbating his other symptoms, making him extremely unstable and paranoid. I'm prescribing a strong sedative for you to give him tonight. Hopefully it will offer Brett some relief and help both of you get some sleep." Dr. Sheldon said. "What about this notion he has that Jason is... alive?" Troy asked. Dr. Sheldon shook her head. "It's a shame that he did this in such a manner. Brett desperately needs closure, and the fact that the body wasn't recovered makes it very difficult for him to accept his brother's death." "So if he can't accept it, this is never really going to be over." Troy realized. The lump in his gut hardened. "He'll be able to move on, but it's going to take time and therapy to help him learn to deal with everything that's happened and not let him fear consume his life." Dr. Sheldon clarified. Troy's head dropped into his hands. REST IS TBA "Brett..." he began, waiting for Brett's eyes to meet his. "I know this is scary for you. You don't understand what's happening, and everything seems really uncertain. Buddy, I am here with you, and so are Gabriella, Chad, Taylor, and my parents. We are all going to get through this together, okay? I'm not going anywhere. You are the most important person to us, and we will do anything, anything, to help you feel better. If you need to talk, we'll listen. If you need to cry, we'll hold you. If you need a distraction, we'll make you laugh. If you need to feel safe and loved, we'll do everything we can to make that happen. You just need to talk to me, let me know how you're feeling, and let me help you. Can you do that?" Troy asked in desperation. Brett's eyes glistened. "...I'll try." he finally told him. "That's my buddy!" Troy replied with a smile. "Now, I know you have things to do to get ready for tomorrow, but I want you to try to get some sleep first. Dr. Lentz will be here with you until my mom's flight arrives, and she can help you with your grocery shopping. How does that sound?" Troy asked. Brett looked at him again, and his eyes betrayed the torture of his emotions. "I'm... I'm scared, Troy." he admitted quietly. "Brett, I know you are." he replied gently, moving to sit next to Brett on the couch. "But the medicine Dr. Sheldon gave you will help you sleep without having to worry about nightmares. You can take some now so you can rest, and then you'll wake up and feel better by the time my mom gets here. Then when my parents get here later tonight, you three can stuff and chop and mince and whatever else you do to make food, and my dad and I can sit on the couch with our guts hanging out and watch football. It's the American way!" Troy said, winking at Brett. A small laugh forced it way out of Brett's chest, and Troy's heart soared to see the beginnings of a smile on his face. "So what do you say?" he told Brett, his voice tinged with huskiness. "You don't have a gut, Troy. Neither does your dad. You're just as fit as hell. Probably more so." Brett said. Troy smiled. "Thanks for noticing, but don't try to change the subject. How about that nap?" he asked. "Okay." Brett answered softly. "Good boy. Come on, I will stay with you, fit physique and all, until you fall asleep." Troy encouraged.


What I've Been Looking ForEdit


Stick to the Status QuoEdit


When There Was Me and YouEdit


Bop to the TopEdit


Breaking FreeEdit


We’re All In This TogetherEdit


What Time Is It?Edit




Work This OutEdit


You Are The Music In MeEdit


I Don't DanceEdit


Gotta Go My Own WayEdit


Bet On ItEdit




All For OneEdit


Now or NeverEdit


Right Here, Right NowEdit


I Want It AllEdit


Can I Have This DanceEdit


A Night To RememberEdit


Just Wanna Be With YouEdit


The Boys Are BackEdit


Walk AwayEdit




We're All In This TogetherEdit

The episode gives us a little insight as to what happened in the moments we weren’t privy to in the Pilot.


High School MusicalEdit


Trivia Edit

  • It is typical in most high school settings to have the jock as the bad guy but Troy Alexander Bolton is a jock in a positive light.
  • In a series that highlights the ruthlessness of some students in high school, Troy serves as a beacon of light. After all, Troy is a popular jock. But, he is more than just a popular kid — he is the exception.
    • Troy is the most popular guy at East High. He is handsome, charming, a superb athlete and a grade-A student. Unlike Weston Miller and Sharpay Evans, he never bullies anyone: he rules through charisma and general awesomeness rather than fear and manipulation.
    • To the students of East High, Troy is the definition of goodness and heroism, and in turn, they constantly praise him and treat him with the utmost admiration and respect.
    • Troy brings hope to the world and its inhabitants in its darkest hour. He represents being the determinator in many events as he brings hope to the world and not look into the despair of his current dillema.
    • Troy inspires hope in many ways: boosting the morale of his allies, persistently keep fighting his enemies even though they are cold-hearted, proving cynics wrong about their own jaded ideals, and inspires people who have started lose hope by reassuring them that all is not completely lost.
  • He's a nice guy through and through, but you do not want to make him angry, usually by trying anything funny on him or anyone he cares about; Troy will wipe the grass with anyone who dares. He throws himself into potentially dangerous situations to protect the people that he cares about, or even strangers.
    • Only three things make Troy mad: when someone messes with his family and friends, when he sees people bullying other people, and when there is homophobia/transphobia involved.
  • Troy and Gabriella had common ground to relate to one another on. They’re both only teenagers, and they both felt as though they had been pre-packaged into boxes by their peers (“The Basketball Guy” and the school’s “Freaky Genius Girl”).
  • He serves as a "sign of hope" to new kid, Brett Shimura, as he struggles through being alone.
    • The relationship with Brett comes off as a bromance-friendship, though aside from some gentle teasing about Brett's shyness.
    • Troy is the first person who reaches out to Brett — the first person to ask for his name.
    • He understands Brett has been through some sort of abuse, and he tries to get Brett the proper help. Troy also attempts to understand Brett by studying his damaged psyche.
    • He is put in a situation that results in him gaining insight into Brett’s personal life, and what Brett has to put up with from his parents.
    • Troy is sensitive and usually very honest and expressive with his emotions, always attempting to open the door for healthy communication, while Brett is expressly shown bottling things up and slapping on forced smiles. Troy teaches Brett to open up and stop repressing his negative emotions.
    • Troy, as of his senior year, is lost and confused, and was never allowed to figure out who or what he wants to be. However, he would have no issue bolstering Brett's self-esteem.
    • Troy always respected and admired Brett's achievements in isolation — not as an afterthought. It must have meant a lot to Brett, and the two would have a strong friendship.
  • He is fiercely loyal to everyone and quick to come to their defense at the first sign of a threat.
  • It is revealed that when Troy was a freshman at East High, he was bullied and taunted because he had a gap in between his two front teeth.