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The bus was a jungle.
It was filled with animals.
The jocks with their black jerseys, which had an R emblazoned in the front, made noises exactly like hairy and overgrown chimpanzees would. They just needed to scratch themselves and eat lice and the resemblance would’ve been complete.
There were a group of girls who were laughing like hyenas.
Some girls (the pretty blond ones) were twittering away like birds. Except that birds would never talk about ‘Mandy actually did that?’ and ‘I got them from Shop n Shop yesterday. Aren’t they cute?’
If I had to classify myself in this high school animal kingdom, I would most definitely call myself a chameleon. My uncanny ability to blend in with the lockers, blend in with the crowd in the cafeteria, blend in with practically anything could definitely earn me that title. In fact, that was what I was doing right now. I was blending in with one of the grey seats of the bus.
I was staring out of the window with my Ipod plugged into my ears. The loud, angry music drowned out everything else. Today had been one of the worst days of my life. And I was attempting to forget all about it by listening to the fast beats.
Suddenly someone tapped my shoulder. I turned my head to see a girl wearing a black sweater dress and green leggings gesturing to the seat next to me. Can I sit here? She mouthed. I nodded and then was again swallowed up by my music.
Another tap on my shoulder. I like what you’re wearing, the girl mouthed this time. I glance down looking what I wore to school today- a white shirt with a short pink plaid skirt and black tights. I wanted to just mouth a thank you back but I thought it would seem rude not to actually talk. I removed my earphones and looked at her. “Thanks”, I said. I extended a hand. “Keira”. She shook it and with a smile. “Kristin”.
“Hi Kristin”, I said still recovering from the fact that I was actually having a conversation with someone in the bus. And why I hadn’t seen her in the morning.
“New around here?”
“Actually yes. My mother and I moved to Pillscly a few days back. Our house is still filled with cartons. Not to mention dust and cobwebs. Its like a mini Halloween party”, Kristin laughed.
I managed a smile. “So how did you like the school?”
“It is pretty good. The campus is much bigger than my last school. I think I can made a friend”, Kristin replied looking at me when she said the last part. This time I really smiled. “And the teachers seemed pretty fun”.
I laughed bitterly. “Fun? Really? You really aren’t a good judge of character are you?”
She flinched and I immediately felt guilty for saying that. But then she gave me a sympathetic smile and asked “Had a bad day at school?”
“Did I ever! As soon as I entered the school, I slipped on the wet floor. Then my locker for some unknown cause decided not to open and was jammed until the janitor came”. I counted all the events on my fingers. “I bruised myself against the classroom door. A girl named Mary spilt water on me in the cafeteria but luckily it dried pretty fast.…”
“It doesn’t sound that bad”, Kristin shrugged. Then she saw me raising an eyebrow. “Ok. Maybe it does”.
“And you haven’t even heard the worst part yet. There’s this new teacher at school—Mrs. Duncan. Oh man, she is the worst. Her dressing sense is the worst on the planet. Her accent is definitely one of the weirdest ones you’ve ever heard. I liked Mrs. Sprouse better. I could actually understand English better. I just….”
“She can’t be that bad”, Kristin said slowly.
“You haven’t heard anything yet. I just asked Audrina for a pencil and she made me stand up and “Apologize right away for talking in class”. At this point I imitated her accent and made double quotes in the air. “She was going to start talking about William Wordworth but then instead she turned to me and told me to talk to the class and tell them about William. What do I know about that dude?”
“What’s your point? Better speed up your story, your stop is coming” Kristin said in a tone I couldn’t comprehend.
“My point is she is a world class torturer that’s what she is. She is going to make my life miserable. I can see the headlines now—straight A student now a straight B student”.
“Give her a break. I don’t think she is that bad. Her parents are Scottish so I guess that explains the weird accent. And I don’t think she got enough time to put together ensembles together for school because her house is a mess”, Kristin explained.
“Uh-oh my stop is here”, I said grabbing my backpack. “What are you, her psychologist or something?”
She smiled. “No, don’t be ridiculous. I’m her daughter”.