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“HANNAH!” She heard a voice come from downstairs. “You are going to be late for your first day of school!” It was her mother making the loud, crackling sound of an over-worked woman.
Hannah got dressed faster then she ever had. She began to remember when she was a kid on the first day of school. She would stay up extra late since she was so excited and woke up the next day without one trace of tiredness. What had happened to her? Why wasn’t she excited to be a senior?
When Hannah got to the kitchen, she saw her mother in her pajamas with dark circles around her eyes. “Your father left a note wishing you a great first day as a senior,” her mother said trying to hold back the enormous yawn that overpowered her strength.
After Hannah ate her breakfast, her mother started sobbing on how she is so proud of her little girl who used to love ladybugs and ponies. Hannah tried to act like she cared about that little girl she once was, but she just couldn’t hold back long enough. Eventually she just put earphones in and started listening to music on her iPod with her mother rambling in the background.
When Hannah arrived at Cornell High School in New York, her mother got out of her silver Volvo and hugged and kissed her until Hannah finally pushed her away because the other kids were staring at her.
As her mother pulled out the street, Hannah walked up through the doors. She saw the most handsome boy she had ever known, Carter Dudley. She had been in his grade since pre-school. Of course she had to make a fool of herself and trip over her own feet and fall flat on her face in front of his shoes.
“Are you okay?” the boy said trying to hold back his laugh.
“Yea, I just…,” she was trying to think of a better excuse than, yea I just tripped over my own feet. “Yea, I’m fine. I just have weak knees.”
“Oh, well then maybe you should get them checked out before you break a bone or hurt yourself.” He said this with a little sarcasm and yet, he sounded like he actually cared about her. “My name is Carter Dudley. I am a senior.”
“Yea, I know. I have been in your class since kindergarten,” she said a slight bit surprised that he didn’t remember her. “Anyway, I am Hannah Jones. I am a senior, too. Who do you have for homeroom?”
All he did was help her get her books together and easily assisted her getting off the floor.
“I actually was on my way to the front desk to get my packet of teachers and classes. Want to come with me?”
Hannah was so taken back by the question that she didn’t say anything. All she did was drop her stuff on the floor again and started walking along his side.
Neither of them said anything on the way there, but just about every jock and cheerleader stopped Carter and said something like, “Dude, what are you doin’?” or “When did you start hangin’ out with her?” When they were on their way back, Carter was asking her what classes she was in and they ended up having five out of eight classes together.
Somewhere in the middle of Hannah’s question about biology, he popped in a really random, yet exciting, question. “Will you go to Homecoming with me?” Then he looked away.
Hannah was so shocked by his unexpected question that she replied with a snotty attitude. “Is this a joke?!” She also knew how she sounded and quickly tried to change it. “I mean….you didn’t even remember my name or that we’ve been in the same class for twelve years. Honestly, it’s hard to believe that you, Carter Dudley, just asked me, Hannah Jones, to senior homecoming.”
He looked down at his feet with a look of depression.
“But to answer your question, Yes! I would love to go to Homecoming with you!”
They both leaped onto each other and hugged each other for at least ten minutes, increasing the tension between their bodies. Everyone around them was watching them as they slowly separated. It had seemed like they knew each other all of their lives.
The next day at school, they didn’t say a word to each other all day. All they did, when they passed each other in the hallway, was stop walking, hold hands, hug each other, and then smile the rest of the time until the met again. All the girls in Cornell High were incredibly jealous that girl, who wasn’t even close to being as pretty as they were, stole their muscular, popular man. They were also angry because Carter was falling in love with that ugly woman that none of the girls liked. How could he do that to them? After all, he was just torturing the girls, right? He couldn’t actually love Hannah Jones, could he?
It was the day of the homecoming dance and each day Hannah and Carter did the same routine, except now they did it in public! Each time they smiled at each other, a jealous group of teenager girls would come up and snatch Carter away right before he was going to formally ask her to be his girlfriend. Every time the envious girls took away Hannah’s crush, which now it was forming into love, she laughed to hide the resentment inside her heart. She wanted to be the girl that he kept by his side every moment of everyday.
During lunch, Carter and Hannah sat together and wouldn’t look at anything else. They didn’t even turn around to see that a freshman nerd boy had tripped near them and spilled his grape juice on them!
They seemed to be reading each others minds. One moment they would laugh hysterically and yet another moment they would be melting on the seat from holding each others hands, which were both, disgustingly clammy from holding each other all day.
After the last bell rang for the end of the school day, Hannah and Carter met up at Hannah’s car. Carter took off his watch, which was a Rolex Model 16613BLU. He held it in his hands for what seemed to be ten minutes. When he finally got the courage to speak, he asked for Hannah’s hand. He started rambling words that were perceived out of order. Hannah was so confused by what he was saying so she decided that there was only one way to clam him down. She quickly lead into him and kissed him gently. When she backed away she was too nervous to look at his face. He lifted his arm and touched her chin. He said calmly, “I wanted to ask you this for such a long time.” He sighed and presented the watch to Hannah. “Will you be my girlfriend?” They both looked at each other with joy and happiness stuck in the glittering of each other’s eyes. He carefully placed the watch on her wrist and fastened it to the tightest setting. When he let go, it dangled from her wrist, after all, it was the biggest watch Hannah had ever seen.
That night, as Hannah was putting the final touches on her make up and hair, the doorbell rang. She yelled to her mother to answer the door because she wanted to make a formal entrance. As soon has her mother started to say, hey, she screamed and then that was all that was heard through the eardrums of Hannah.
Hannah ran down the steps as fast as she could until she saw her mother lying on the floor. She had a scarf rapped tightly around her neck. Next to her head there was a note:
ThErE iS mOrE wHeRe ThIs CaMe FrOm If YoU dOn’T gIvE mE mY mOnEy…
This was incredibly astonishing and surprising to Hannah. “Since when have my parents been borrowing money from Lone Sharks?” she said to herself in a quiet whisper. “This can’t be true. My parents are smart and successful. They wouldn’t borrow money….Would they?”