If it were up to me, I’d never go back to school.
Back in my room, I crumbled to the floor against my bed and started crying in earnest. Burying my face in the blankets, I sobbed. Stupid, I kept thinking. I am just a stupid girl.
When I arrived at school the next day, my friends, Anne and Chloe, were frantically waving at me from the playground. We were like The Three Musketeers, inseparable since grade one. Anne could have passed for my sister. We were the same height, the same build, and had the same blonde hair, except mine was very short and Anne’s was shoulder length. Chloe was very different. She was also tall, but she already showed curves in all the right places, and had black curly hair.
“What’s up?” I said, joining them on a bench under the oak tree where we usually met in the morning.
“Did you do the math homework?” Anne asked.
“The one about the ants on a stick?” Chloe asked.
Anne hesitated. “Do you think you got it right?”
“I don’t think I did; I know I did.”
“What makes you so sure?”
“Luc helped me.”
That was all the girls needed to know. If Luc had helped me with my math homework, then I was bound to have the correct answer. As one, they delved in their school cases and yanked out their math books.
“You don’t mind sharing, do you?” Both of them looked at me with big anxious eyes and eager faces.
“Of course not,” I quickly replied. “The answer is one minute.” Their books disappeared in half that time as they sighed with relief.
“Did you guys do the essay?” I asked.
“Sort of,” Anne said. “My mom helped me.”
“So did mine,” Chloe smiled.
“So did mine,” I giggled.
I wanted to ask my friends if they were planning on going to high school after the summer holidays, but didn’t dare to do it. Suppose they said yes; then I would be the one left behind. I couldn’t bear the thought of having to stay
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