Just for kicks

January 20, 2010
Donna woke up to the sound of her blasting alarm clock and her cousins fighting over the last bite of cereal in the kitchen. She glanced over at her clock; 5:30, ugh. Everyone was always up early in her small apartment. “What time is it?” called her sister, Annie, from across the room. “Really early,” replied Donna as she forced herself out of bed. “Whatever,” said Annie “I’m going back to bed.” With a few steps she made it to the kitchen where Marie had apparently gotten the last bowl of cereal and was looking quite pleased with herself while Frank was watching in envy and trying to snag a bite every once in a while. Her cousins were twenty five and twenty seven and seemed a little old to be fighting over Coco Puffs but neither of them had jobs and they still lived with their mom, Donna’s aunt Betty, who lived with them in their tiny apartment. Aunt Betty was probably still sleeping because she, unlike the rest of the family, was not a morning person. Donna decided to skip breakfast partly because her loser cousins ate all the cereal and partly because she had no time. She turned to the digital clock on the stove; 5:45, that gave her 45 minutes to get dressed and sprint to her 6:30 AM dance class. It puzzled everyone she knew why she decided to sign up for ones that were so early but she was always way to busy after school anyway. She crept back into her room making sure not to wake her little sister up again, grabbed some clothes and slipped into the closet. She threw on a tee shirt some sweatpants and a pair of ripped tights and came back out of the closet. On her way out she grabbed her dance bag then she headed out the door. She pushed through crowds of people as she made her way down the street. Who knew that so many people would be up this early? She looked down at her watch. Oh wait, she didn’t have one. Her internal clock said that it was about 6:00 by now but it couldn’t really be trusted. Donna darted around the corner and across the street without even a glace in either direction. A cab driver honked at her once she made it across, but she ignored it as she ran into the door. She finally looked up at a clock. It was 6:25. She made it. She dropped her bag by the wall, changed her shoes, and swept her curly black hair into a ponytail. This was a very small class. That was another thing she liked about early morning classes, there were never many other people in them. This was also her favorite class of the week, jazz, which was one of the things that she really stressed being on time to. By now the other dancers were huddled up in a group on the other side the floor talking to each other. Donna was always too shy to talk much in class. At home, she seemed like the opposite of shy, but when she left she would just blend into the background like she wasn’t even there. Once class started the teacher called them all onto the center of the floor to begin stretching. The teacher had a name but Donna could never remember it so she just called her the teacher. Donna had recently become one of the more flexible students in the class and once in a while the other girls even gave her a compliment. They were never actually mean to her. It would be so much easier to hate them if they were. Once they were done stretching the teacher told them to line up in the corner to go across the floor. Donna was too timid to be fighting over the front so she snuck on over to the back while one of the students she wished she was strutted towards the front and started kicking across the floor according to the teacher’s instructions. This was never an easy class. If your kicks weren’t above you head than the teacher would grab your leg and make them be. But Donna liked strict dance teachers; you would never get anywhere if you had a pushover for a teacher. The line started moving forward and soon it was her turn. She started gracefully kicking her leg up a good few inches above her head and then repeating, and repeating, and then repeating again. Her teacher made it so that you couldn’t just go straight across; you had to go in a diagonal the longest possible way on what her math teacher would call the hypotenuse. After a good 20 kicks, she finally made it across. They were actually getting a lot better, but her dance teacher dare not admit it. She just wanted to keep you craving improvement. After they finished those kicks they had to do every form of leap, turn, and even more kicks that you could look up in the dance dictionary. They didn’t start their routine until later in the year so the teacher could make them do anything she could dream up. At 7:30 the class was over and Donna was always the first one out while the others stayed in to mingle. There was no time to go home and get changed so she would have to go to school in her dance clothes. She never really cared what other people thought about what she wore. She checked to make sure her books were in her dance bag (she keeps everything in there) then slung it around her shoulder. Maybe it wasn’t too late to catch a bus to school. She glanced down the road and didn’t see one so she decided to walk. She would now arrive at school badly dressed and sweaty. Lovely. School was only a few blocks away, but that was a long way when you were carrying a two ton dance bag. She decided to power walk because she didn’t fell like running. The morning rush was even busier at 7:30. It was hard to push through giant crowds with a giant bag in your hand, especially when everyone seems to be going the opposite way. She felt invisible, which wasn’t an uncommon feeling for her. It took her almost twice the time to make it to her school steps. Once she got inside she could see a few stragglers still at their lockers as she darted to the eighth grade hallway. Her locker was strategically placed all the way at the far end of the hallway. Since no one was there she could run down the hallway. It was kind of fun actually. Maybe she should come by after school and use the hallways as a slip n’ slide. As soon as she opened her locker she began the nearly impossible task of shoving her giant dance bag into it. Finally finding a practical use for her kicks, she kicked it in even though it was a mystery how she would get it out later. She finally slipped onto homeroom just in time to not get marked absent which was a good thing because she hated going to the attendance office and asking the weird lady for a late pass. She decided to catch up on her sleep which wouldn’t be a problem if she sat behind that kid with the giant head. Her nap was rudely ended by the sound of the bell. She grabbed her stuff and scrambled out the door. She walked down the hallway into the science room and sat down at a desk in the back corner where she hopefully wouldn’t get called on. Science could be interesting but it was mostly just boring. Since you couldn’t sleep in this class she just decided to sit there and pretend to be interested. Her next class was history. History was like science except that she also hated the teacher. Thankfully the big headed kid was in this class who she could sit behind. For third period she had math. She liked math but she actually had to do work. Work isn’t the best thing for you when you are tired, hungry and your legs are sore. After a whole 45 minutes of work, *shudders*, it was time for lunch, which also began the daily battle of who to sit next to. She could sit next to her default friends who she didn’t really like. She could also try sitting with her cool old friends who she drifted apart from last summer. Or maybe she could try to find others of her type. But of course once she got her lunch she chickened out and sat down at her default table. From across the room she could hear Kathy and Haila, the popular brats, going on about their lives like no one else mattered. Both of whom don’t look tired or sweaty in the slightest. Well they apparently didn’t have anything to do this morning.
They were never mean to Donna in particular, they probably thought that she was just another loser they shouldn’t care about, but Donna still greatly disliked them. “So like last week,” continued Kathy with the whole cafeteria as her audience,” my like totally awesome dance routine soooo won like almost a bronze at the like town wide competition.” Donna had had her share of competitions. She wasn’t bold enough for a solo but she did have a duet that won high gold in nationals. But she never went around bragging about it, she’d actually be surprised if anyone even knew about it. “I think I won them over with my amazing kicks,” continued Kathy. Then Kathy got up and proudly showed off a kick with terrible form that didn’t even reach her shoulders. Everyone gave an involuntary cheer. Haila cheered the loudest. If she trained with the Donna’s jazz teacher her leg would be ripped out of its socket by now. But Donna wasn’t the only one who dared not even look. That gave her the idea that she might not be the only one with hidden talent who was either too modest or too shy to let others know. On her way back from lunch she noticed a sign outside the window. It read: State wide talent competition. Anyone can enter. Prizes include $2500 and state wide recognition. Maybe this was her chance to prove them wrong.

Join the Discussion

This article has 6 comments. Post your own now!

Lovestonedloser said...
Feb. 12, 2010 at 7:48 pm
For those who loved my piece "Forever" The second part is now up. Be sure to rate and comment. once i reach a certain amount. I'll post more
SweetMaylisa said...
Feb. 6, 2010 at 8:06 pm
*Starts monotoned speech*
It's very nice, Alison.
Tell me what this got in English again? ;)
dancemaniac565 replied...
Feb. 8, 2010 at 7:26 pm
I think I got an A-.
SweetMaylisa replied...
Feb. 9, 2010 at 3:23 pm
Lucky, mine got a B+ Dx
Well, yours is better than mine
StalkerChld said...
Feb. 1, 2010 at 12:05 pm
this is a amasing book
Lovestonedloser said...
Jan. 28, 2010 at 11:00 am
This was good. Something about this piece really stuck with me :) Comment on some of my work if you don't mind please? I have two stories "Forever" and "A Blood promise" give opinions on if i should continue one, the other or both?
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