A tribute to an old friend (Part 2)

by madamsbob

WTF !? xD.

I dreaded waking up the next morning just as much as I dreaded seeing Julie & co. It was pathetic how they obsessed over the most mundane of things; my accent, my shoes and picking the right highlighter for notes. I simply did not understand why I still bothered to talk to them. I also did not understand why they insisted that I spend time with them. I was their new consort in the making. It was about time I started “following their footsteps.” Before I knew it, I was shopping, brainstorming and painting nails with them. Once Julie said to me, “It’s such a waste that you’re, like, a size 1 and you dress like a nun.”

I didn’t know what to make of that.

I trudged my way to my first class of the day – English (Reading to be exact). On my way there, Julie announced that she had color coded her notes, yet again. She had highlighted the important quotes – blue, the notes – pink, and the analysis – orange. She had done her homework. Glamorous.

I took a seat as the teacher arrived, urging everyone to hand in their homework and take out their copies of the novel. As usual, we discussed yesterday’s chapter in depth. The teacher had assigned a task for each group. Julie’s group had to act out a part of a chapter and analyze it. Their presentation went incredibly well…

…Until the teacher asked them a question.

As much as I loved to answer, I knew what the result would be. The teacher would most likely ask me to repeat myself, Julie and her pals would be forced to control another fit of giggles caused by my accent and everyone would suddenly be aware that an outcast was answering a question in their class.

So, while they had a discussion in front of the class, I got out my notebook and wrote the answer down instead. The group in the front attempted answer after answer and the teacher said nothing other than, “Yes, but elaborate…” or “Close…but why?”

Then a girl who was sitting in another group to my left raised her hand.

And, she said the very sentence that I had scribbled off in my notebook

The teacher, now content, asked the exhausted group to take their seats.

I turned to where the girl was sitting. I smiled. She smiled back. It was as if she had somehow read my mind and what I had written. Julie, meanwhile, sat back down and complained.

“She wasn’t even in our group,” she said glaring at the girl. “I wasn’t far off from the answer.”

You were.

“Well, she has a tendency to stick her nose in everything!” someone else said as they stared at the girl on the left.

I thought it was pretty brilliant.

“Aww… how cute!” Julie said staring at my notebook. She then whisked it away and showed it to her minions. “B has written down what she said!”

There was another round of glares and giggles. I was just about fed up with them.

Lunch loomed ahead and I plotted ways I could ward them off. While I contemplated what I could use to swat them away today, Julie had come up with a phenomenal idea.

“I think I’m going to have a party this weekend,” she said as she sat down at the usual lunch table. I munched on my sandwich.

“Of course, you are all invited,” she continued. “It’ll be a sleepover so naturally everyone needs to pack accordingly…”

She made it seem like it was a fishing trip in a far-off country. I just waited till she finished her announcement. Any minute now, she would start her lunch off by judging me.

“I’m only inviting you…” she started while staring me down. “…because you are nice and you probably don’t have anything else to do.”

“What is that supposed to mean?” I asked. I was just about ready to chuck the half-eaten sandwich at her.

“I mean… you have nothing else to do…” she repeated herself, slowly and mockingly. She stressed every syllable as if I didn’t understand what she said. “It’s also the reason we let you sit with us.”

“You let me sit with you because I have nothing else to do?”

“Basically…”

“You know, I sit here because I don’t know anyone else. Maybe that’s about to change,” I said as I got up.

“What?”

“I really don’t like you people,” I said, slowly and mockingly, so she understood. Before I knew what I was doing, I packed up and left the table.

As I walked away from the table, I noticed the girl from my English class sitting at a corner table. She was currently engrossed in a book while balancing a spoonful of food. I looked back at Julie’s table one more time and plopped down on a chair in front of the girl.

“Hey,” I said.

“Hi,” she replied. She looked a little surprised by my sudden arrival.

“You’re in my English class, right?” I asked opening my lunch bag.

“Yes,” she said. “You know, Mrs. U told us that we were going to have a new girl in our class every day for a WEEK….”

I laughed.

“I’m F, by the way,” she said.

“I’m B,” I said as I took out my unfinished sandwich. “What are you reading?”

I was afraid she was going to ask me to explain why I sat with her or why I had suddenly left Julie’s table. But, I didn’t need to worry. I had made a new friend that day. She and I had more important things to talk about than ridiculing Julie’s immaturity. We talked as though we had known each other for eternity.

When the day was over and the final bell rang that day, I was actually looking forward to coming to school the next day. F would be saving me a seat next to her during lunch time. I would forget all about Julie and her pretentious party as I braved my way through my last few weeks of the school year.

F and I had become fast friends on that uneventful day. Together, we tackled middle and high school together. Whether I am in high spirits or just plain dejected, she has a knack of knowing just what to say. Truth be told, I am lucky for having found such a good friend.

When someone asks me how I know F, I smile and recount this “tribute”.

“She is one of the first friends I made after I moved here,” I say to them. “And she was also the first person who didn’t ask me to repeat myself after every sentence.”

One Comment to “A tribute to an old friend (Part 2)”

  1. This is awesome!! 🙂 I wish everyone could have a friendship story like this.

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