Authors: Renee Ericson
Tags: #General Fiction
It’s like this in almost all of my classes. It’s not that I’m ashamed of being smart, it’s just that people tend to shy away from the smart kid. Like it somehow makes you less like them and well, we all know it’s hard enough to get through high school when you
have anything that makes you different. Adding smarty pants to your M. O.
does not a cool kid make
Not that I really consider myself one of them–a cool kid. I had a push in the right direction having Eric as an older brother, who was a senior and the captain of the football team when I started high school as a freshman. He didn’t exactly walk with me to every class and introduce me to all of his friends, but he did let me ride to school with him. Mostly because Mom and Dad wouldn’t have had it any other way, but the fact that we were related certainly gave people the impression that I was someone worth knowing. Other than that I’d say that I’ve made my way on my own, being on the dance team, homecoming committee and helping out with boosters. Being Jake’s girlfriend certainly hasn’t hurt either. I guess I’d say I’m somewhere in the middle.
As the class sits in virtual silence waiting for the last few quizzes to be turned in, I hear “psst!” from my left. Of course it’s Amber. She’s tapping her perfectly manicured nail incessantly on her cell phone that’s placed on the corner of her desk. She’s going for nonchalant and failing miserably. I’m pretty sure even Mr. Abernathy knows I have a text waiting on my phone.
The school frowns upon students keeping their phones out during class, we’re supposed to keep them in our lockers or in a pocket during class, but we’re free to use them between class and at lunch. They tried to make having a cell on campus a no-no. They seem to think it will entice kids to cheat, but with all of the stink stirred up by parents and students the school backed down. So, unlike my bestie, I
keep my phone in my pocket.
Just a guess here, but I’m going to say that once they grade a few of her tests they’ll know Amber’s not using hers to look up answers. Perhaps someone should suggest that she
to look for answers, or maybe put it away just by the sheer chance that she might actually learn something in class. Should it be me?
. Will I?
I know for a fact that she’s no dummy and I know she’d do well if she tried. I think she just lacks the drive. I like to think that she just has other things in her life that are more important to her right now–like dance and partying.
Hey, I never said she had her priorities straight.
Since I’m her partner in crime for both of those things, I hope her lack of interest in school never gets in the way. Besides, I’ve offered to help her with homework a few times so she knows where to find me if she ever wants to take me up on it. She’s actually one of the few people that knows how well I do in school and she doesn’t give me any shit. Just one of the many reasons that I love her crazy ass. I figure she’ll buckle down when she’s ready. Whenever
I wait until there is only one test left to be turned in before I reach into my pocket to get my phone. I place it in my lap and wait a couple of moments before discreetly swiping my finger across the waiting message and putting in my passcode. Getting caught with an open text and having it read aloud is not on my to-do list for today. Honestly it could be anything, but I highly doubt it’s something that needs to be announced to the class or really needs to be read right now.
Even the girl’s text messages make me have to stifle a laugh. Part of me thinks she must have spent more time figuring out the text than she did on the quiz she just turned in. It’s a green heart, what appears to be a piece of paper curled up on the edges, a goat, bee, lock, a hand with the finger pointing down, a calendar, dog, another hand pointing at the dog’s ass and a crystal ball.
She seems to think she’s devised a code that teachers can’t crack. Sad that out of all of that there are only two things I understand. The green heart and the crystal ball.
message she send me starts with a green heart, because that’s my favorite color and she
me. I’m not really sure why she always throws it in there first when she’s sending the message
me, but it’s part of her “code”. The crystal ball is easy, she’s just letting me know it’s a question.
What the fuck does all that other shit mean?
Instead of trying to figure it out I decide to wait for the bell and slide my phone back into my pocket.
I look up as I hear Mr. A shuffling the quizzes into a nice neat stack. He peers over his glasses and says in that stuffed-up nasal tone he has that he will be grading them tonight and we should get them back Monday. Most of the class groans at the news. Before he can assign any homework for the weekend the bell rings and half the class is up and out the door. I grab my pencil from the groove at the front of my desk and collect my text book, folder and notebook from under my chair, and meet Amber outside the classroom. I notice that the new guy walks out after me and heads down the hall without a backward glance. I’m starting to think that my girl is off her guy-watching game.
Perhaps he wasn’t looking at me at all?
Yeah–that’s probably right.
“So Miss ants-in-her-pants, what’s so important that it couldn’t wait 3 minutes? I couldn’t even figure out what the hell you were asking.” I say, giving a laugh.
“Gah Nora Bora”, she lets out an exaggerated sigh and pulls out her phone. “Let me break it down for you. The heart is obvious.”
Except for its necessity
, I think. She continues on with her line of thinking, “The paper is for
, I had to use a goat for
because I don’t have a sheep.” She looks down at her phone making a disappointed face. I need to tell her that there
a sheep character, she must have just missed it. “The bee is for
, but hopefully I didn’t need to tell you that. I’m also hoping you understood that the lock and the finger pointing down meant lockdown.” She eyes me skeptically then finishes with letting me know that the calendar is for next weekend and the dog with a finger pointed at its ass means bitch-ass. Meaning
“Get it? ‘Will you be on lockdown next weekend, Bitch-ass?’” She’s looks up from under her long lashes to see if I’m following.
“Damn Amber, you made that one difficult enough.” I say, shaking my head. “So what’s going on next weekend that I need to be free and that I need to be worried about it a full week in advance?”
“Ohh, nothing major” she pauses for effect, “just wondering if you’ll be able to go the biggest damn party of the year on Saturday.” she sing-songs.
I raise my eyebrows in a way that says,
tell me more
“I’m listening.” To say that we enjoy a good party would be a huge understatement. They tend to lead to most of the trouble we’ve landed ourselves in over the years, but also the most fun.
Amber lowers her voice and looks around the hall as though she’s checking for eavesdroppers. She twirls one of her blonde curls around her finger and says “Well, my darling Nora, Saturday night Andrew Pierce is throwing a party to rival all Back To School parties. I heard it’s going to be bigger than Katie Johnson’s kegger last year!”
Amber’s voice gets higher toward the end as she rises up on her tippy toes
I’m pretty sure the eavesdroppers just heard. Her face is lit up with huge blue eyes and an expectant, yet crazy smile. The look is hilarious, but totally warranted.
Katie’s party was epic. It also landed me in a major pile of crap, or puke, if you want to be specific, the details of which I barely remember. I had only been in
trouble before that. Apparently being left drunk on my porch in the middle of the night by my friends wasn’t what my parents wanted for their sixteen year old. That night was the beginning of my parent’s new form of teenage torture. It’s something they like to call “alternative punishment”. It carries all the benefits of being grounded with added fun, like volunteer work.
I know Amber expects an answer, but I honestly can’t say since I’ve yet to be released from my current form of “A.P.” and anything can happen before next weekend.
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