'Why You Gotta Be So Mean?'

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BZZZP. The low vibration of the Motorola phone makes it dance across the glimmering wood of the side table. The screen lights up, one new message, far too tempting. It's only an arm's length away now; she won't even have to lean over to snatch it. Best friends don't keep secrets, she knows that. Besides, Elise wouldn't hurt her again.

Her brain starts to count down the seconds before Elise will be back from the bathroom. She won't have forever. It's now or never. She tries to reassure herself, tells herself it's all in her mind. Elise wouldn't hurt her again, and not now of all times. Elise would never do that again.

She could still feel the coveted June breeze against the back of her neck, the way it blew her dark brown curls to the left and made goose bumps pop up on her arms as she stood still. She could still remember the bead of sweat rolling down her temples, the speeding thumps of her heart as it nearly burst out of her chest, the pain as her lungs cried out for air. She had memorized everything about it even though she didn't want to.

She could picture her best friend of eight years running off towards the swings as the tree rustled in the wind, eager to show off their summer-is-coming-green leaves. She could see Celine, the girl who had ruined her life in fourth grade, trying again in sixth, this time taking Elise along for the ride. And she could see, oh she could see, both of their mouths wide open in ear-to-ear smiles, their heads rocking back and forth. And even though it was months behind her, she could hear the gut-wrenching symphony of their laughter in her ears, the sound worse than nails screeching along a chalkboard.

But worst of all, she could feel the emptiness surrounding her, sense the piercing glares of everyone in the park as they savored her embarrassment. She could hear the voice in her head whispering, "You're friendless now. Grow up and learn to deal with it." And she could taste the bitter salt of her own tears as they tumbled from her eyes down her cheeks towards her chapped lips, threatening to drown her in sorrow.

Elise wouldn't do that again, she knew it. Everything was better now. Elise had apologized, oh so sincerely. Her father had paid to take Elise along with them on a ski trip, and they were having the time of their lives, best friends once more. No, Elise wouldn't do that again.

She glances to her left, to her right. The silence beckons her to reach over and snatch up the black plastic. Now or never. She breathes slowly, slower, slower. Her heartbeat goes fast, faster, faster.


From: Elise | To: Marie

omg shes bein sooo

annoyin not gonna

survive two more days

i knew this would happen!!!


Her heart catches in her chest, and a lump forms in her throat. Her vision goes cloudy as her eyes glaze over with tears. Suddenly, the room feels too small, she's too hot, it's too cold, the distant hum of the TV in the room next door is far too loud.

Her brain wires the message into her memory, makes sure she'll always remember it even when she doesn't want to, even when she tries to push it away. "People don't change. Don't ever grow close to anyone. All they're ever gonna do is hurt you." It forms walls out of solid concrete, smooth and cold to the touch, invincible to the sincerity and honesty she would always see as lies. Her heart grows solid and unshakable, and she vows silently to herself that she will never taste the bitter salt of her own tears again.





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This article has 4 comments. Post your own now!

RedheadAtHeart This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Sept. 10, 2011 at 6:44 pm

Wow!

This is exquisitely written. The description of her reaction is spot-on, and everything else is practically perfect. The first paragraph grabbed me and wouldn't let go. Gorgeous work.

 
everanon replied...
Sept. 12, 2011 at 7:27 pm
Thank you so much!
 
simonesayz21 said...
Sept. 8, 2011 at 5:06 pm
heyy i really liked this! i was just confused on who was the girl you were talking about also i think  the story would be better withe a little more emotion;) keep writing
 
everanon replied...
Sept. 10, 2011 at 4:22 pm
Thank you! I really appreciate your feedback. :)
 
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