Of course this boy didn’t exist and that story would be adorable if Kristina wasn’t terrified of having a boy come within 50 yards of her. The idea that a nice guy would sit next to her and ask her to dinner was such an alarming and frightening thought, she couldn’t even process the possibility. She buttoned up the top button of her jacket and whipped out her IPod, putting the earbuds firmly in her ears. Instant social repellent.
Halfway through an Elvis Costello song, she heard the room fall to a hush. An older woman, clearly compensating for her age with the knee-high boots and dangling earrings, walked inside and gently rested her purse on the desk.
Kristina yanked out the earphones with a swift tug and stuffed them in her backpack.
“Hello. Welcome to newspaper. I’m Ms. Gartner. Nice to see some familiar faces,” she said, smirking at the rowdy boys in the corner.
“Love you too, Ms. G,” the one in the striped shirt said.
“Super,” she said, giving them a thumbs up, and then turned towards Kristina. She felt her body run cold as she noticed a lack of freshman in the club. It was too late to run out of the room, but each and every molecule in her body would’ve been happy if she did.
“And I’m happy see a new face. Care to introduce yourself?” Ms. Gartner said, gesturing out her hands.
Kristina struggled a smile and looked out at the crowd. Her cheeks were already gradually turning bright crimson.
Half dozen lazy tired eyes looked over at her. It wasn’t like the movies. No one seemed to immediately set into motion an evil plan to ruin her life. More likely, they were just happy to have a few minutes taken up of class.
She didn’t want to stand. The blouse she had bought at Target looked so cute on the rack. It was coral pink, a color Glamour had said would look great against her eyes, and cinched in at the sides. She’d tried it on in the dressing room, staring at herself in the smeared mirror, admiring how thin it made her look. However, with the new jeans she had on, it kept riding up, revealing centimeters of her untoned stomach. She yanked down the ends of the shirt, hoping to keep it from flashing the class as she stood.
“Um, well, my name’s Kristina. I’m a freshman. So, yeah,” she said, letting her voice trail off. The junior guys were in the corner, looking at one of the guy’s Iphone and laughing at some YouTube video they had found.
No one needed to hear more. She sat down slowly, looking around the room for a friendly face. A few perky seniors smiled her way, with the condescending grin of someone looking at an ugly baby.
“Thank you,” said the teacher, “now let’s get started. Amanda? Care to explain our plans?”
A girl from the front row jumped to her feet like a spring had been activated under her seat. She gripped a crisp red file folder tight in her manicured hands.