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One Hundred Questions

Only ninety-nine more questions to go.
I wonder how many questions the other students have to go. They missed the original exam too. The girl was in the hospital - like me - but a hospital for physical ailments instead of mental. The boy was at a funeral. He is still wearing all black.
I scratch my arm and pluck at the stitches like miniature guitar strings.
The girl fidgets with her bandana and attempts to steady her breathing. She nudges the oxygen tank with her sneaker and scratches her philtrum absentmindedly, then readjusts her nose tubes.
I mimic her, trying to breathe slowly, in through my nose, out through my mouth.
Something smells gross. Someone smells gross. I smell gross. Did I put deodorant on this morning? I definitely put deodorant on this morning. Doesn’t matter; I’m still sweating like crazy. I bet the other kids are too focused on their test to realize I have massive pit stains anyway …
The boy fills in bubbles feverishly. His pencil squeaks like a chipmunk.
Freshman year, my crush told me I look like a chipmunk because my cheeks are so chubby. Your cheeks swell if you puke a lot.
I continue to scratch my arm with my free hand. Scratch scratch scratch. The other hand holds a pencil. I tap it against the paper like drumsticks.
I wish I was in a band, instead of taking a test that determines my class grade that determines my GPA that determines my college education that determines the rest of my life.
My fingertips are wet and warm. I look down at my arm. I should probably go back to the hospital. My guitar needs to be restrung.
“Oh my god, what happened?”
The scabs are raked into the space underneath my fingernails.
“I’ll get the nurse.”
I should probably hold my arm or wrap it to stop the bleeding. I wouldn’t want the janitor to have to work overtime because of me.
“Grab some paper towel!”
I pull a suture out of my arm. My fingernails somehow wore it thin until it snapped, so it’s not like it’s actually holding my arm together anymore anyways.
I raise my hand. “I think I’m going to vomit.”
Washington High School’s best instructor glares at me, and growls, “I’m calling your parents.”
I run my tongue over my braces like when the brackets were first superglued onto my incisors. My tongue is bleeding, and excess saliva builds up in my mouth.
Ninety-eight more questions. Only ninety-eight more questions to go.
I vomit.




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