She. She wakes up, panics, falls out of bed. She pulls
on yesterday's clothing, a combination of denim and
cotton and earth tones and bagginess. Shoes,
converse, worn so thin her socks are visible through
the holes. Hair gets thrown into a messy bun, face
splashed with freezing cold water, teeth brushed
hastily, fuzzy blue hoodie pulled on and zippered, bag
and books grabbed off the kitchen counter.
Outside. Outside is irritatingly sunny, but cold as fuck.
Leaves crackle underfoot, thorny rose-bush branches
snag her jacket as she hurries past to the car...
The car, the white Lumina, the piece of shit, the mom's
"boyfriend's/future step-dad's" car. She wants to vomit
as she gets into the front seat. The car reeks of him, old
spice, herbal seltzer drinks, mothballs, marijuana,
School. School is hectic, familiar yet unfriendly.
Hundreds of lost teenagers wandering around, talking
chatting laughing smoking yelling fighting running
hugging kissing buzzing with the static electricity of
wasted lives. No one says a word to her. No one
makes eye contact with everyone else, it's a desolate
existance in this museum of plastic and makeup and
designer clothing and cell phones, blow-dried hair and
strategically placed accessories. She keeps her eyes
on the ground, she feels paranoid, like everyone is
looking at her and whispering, "God, what is she
thinking? Look at those clothes, look at that face, look at
that hair, look at her look at her..."
She hurries to get to her building, flicks her cigarette,
pushes open the door, goes down the hall hugging her
books to her chest like a shield. The classroom is
empty, she goes straigt to her desk and sits down,
opens a text book to a random page, pretends to be
studying. She waits for the rest of the class to file in,
chat among themselves until the teacher arrives with
his thick Greek accent and algebra equations and pink