New, New, New
The morning air is so fresh and clear; the green’s of perfect lawns glowing proudly, the mix of flowers brightening the dull ground. Not a grey or tainted cloud could be insight if you were to look up at the calm sky. Just clear blue, with delicate wisps of foam that look almost transparent. Small fragments of blossom petals dance in the slow wind, being thrown from wall to tree down on an invisible rope. The faint chirps and cries of the blue, white, and blackbird fight over the drums of early traffic. Fumes of black ashed smoke crawling and spitting across the tortured gravel roads. Typical Monday morning in a typical little town.
Footsteps of businessmen as they march over to their classy cars in ironed straight suits and holding their designer leather briefcases. Postmen, patrolling the paths as they deliver their daily batch of letters from door to door. Mothers screaming from houses, trying to wake up their lazy child or children as they try to prepare them for the day. And the children slumping downstairs with baggy eyes as they force a handful of cheerios and a splash of milk down their throat before throwing on some clothes and dragging themselves to the bus stop. Their backpacks scraping against the concrete, their mouths stinging with fresh toothpaste, their fingers anxiously pulling at their t-shirts as they see their fellow students at the bus stop and the constant yawns that escape their mouths as they regret staying up really late just to finish their favorite Netflix series so they can discuss the events in class the next day.
There is however an exception on this cliche day, in this cliche town with these boring cliche people. The new house, the new family and the new student. New, new, new. That’s exactly how to capture a group of simple folk’s attention. The new drama, new stories, new gossip. Just another conversation topic for them to discuss at their evening family meals. Where families decide whether to talk to them or ignore them. Nobody wants to associate with someone who doesn’t follow everyone’s cliche daily routine. Someone who stands out and attracts gossip and bad reviews. Because to simple folk who are stuck in cliche, reputation is everything.
Waking up at exactly 8:34 am is a very tired, small, sweaty but relaxed girl who lies half on her bed and half off her bed staring intently at her bare chalky ceiling. Her greasy thin brown hair is splayed out around her face in a bundle of knots, her dull grey eyes highlighted in bloodshot pink. Her pale skin looks alienated against her bright Christmas pajamas that are wrapped around her tiny frame, almost as if she’s cold in all of those layers. Her fingers cling onto her thick white duvets, her black-painted toenails curling down into her feet as she stretches her legs. Her small stretch is the only sign that the girl is actually still living. Just a bit of fake blood and the whole scene would look like a murder.
Her nose sniffles slightly, scrunching up against her face as she catches the smell of fresh bacon and eggs. Her mother’s cooking from downstairs as she prepares for her first day at her new job. Her father is already off to the local garage where he has found a job as a mechanic. Low pay but the family had made an unexpected move and were glad to find a job that is suitable enough. Her mother would be a nurse at the city hospital, taking the car with her so that left the girl to walk to her new college. A college she didn’t want to go to but her parents have desperately pushed her into it after years of planning and preparation. So now she has a chance at extra education. Whether she wakes up and attends that education is a whole other story.
That is her mother quickly serving up the fresh food on a plate before scrambling around the dining room and setting the table. Footsteps running from room to room but still no footsteps of the dead looking girl upstairs.
‘I made you breakfast, sweetie!’
She’s coming upstairs now, her feet sprinting up the carpeted steps as she tries not to slip. Slipping into the bathroom she starts to tie her hair back into a ponytail, her minty blue scrubs already neatly thrown over her body. After pulling her hair back out of her face she applies some makeup before heading over to her daughter’s room. Resting an ear at the door she listens and is greeted with complete silence. She sighs deeply, slowly knocking on the door and taking a calm breath. The door opens slowly, screeching in annoyance as it's pushed off of the latch. The mother pokes her head around the corner to get a full view of her splayed out daughter who is practically falling off of the bed. But she doesn't comment, choking it down she pushes on a smile and a sweet voice.
‘Honey I need to get going now. School starts at 9 and you missed the bus so you’re going to have to walk.’
No reply. The mother moves from foot to foot as she awkwardly waits for an answer that she knows will not come. She hates looking at her daughter in this state. She just keeps telling herself, it’s teenager stuff and that she was like this too. But she knows that isn’t true.
‘Key’s on the counter and...’
The mother groans, the internal itching in her chest grows as she sees the piles of mess that coat her daughter’s room. They had only just moved and still, she had managed to create the same amount of mess that was in her old room.
‘Try to clean up’ she mumbles under gritted teeth.
The girl closes her eyes in frustration. How many times must she tell her mother that her room isn’t messy? Her room is just organized in a way that her mother hates because her mother doesn’t know where everything is. But she does. She knows where everything is and that’s all that matters. The bedroom door closes and after a slow minute of silence, she hears the front door follow. She’s finally alone.
Rolling in a slow and painful movement, she collapses on the floor tangled in bedsheets. A sharp tang sits in the back of her throat, her left arm aching profusely under her thick covers. Maybe she had leaned on it funny? She shuffles around to get her arms free from the tight covers and slowly sits up. Her back is stiff from the weird sleep position and her head is swinging around in a way that reminds her of the tire swing at her old house. Only because she feels like throwing up. With all the strength she can find in her jelly arms, she pushes herself onto her feet.
Like Bambi on ice, she makes a very zigzaggy pathway to the bathroom down the hall. Her arms shaking out at her sides as she uses them to support her weak frame. Her legs are absolutely hopeless as they topple all over the place, her feet almost like water as they hardly support her. And on top of her weak wobbly state, she walks with blurry eyes that shake around in her skull like crazy as she makes her short trek down the hall.
Crashing into the bathroom she dips her head into the sink, spraying her face with cooling water. Her eyes blinking it away but waking up from her dizzy state. Groaning she grips the basin with one hand whilst holding her aching back with the other. She is hideous. That’s all she’s thinking about. How ugly she looks. Her face is flushed, the rest of her body pale, cold, and aching. Her arm hurting the most, then her back. But her unsymmetrical face, flushed cheeks, and stupid freckles make her look like the biggest mistake ever made. She frowns at her reflection, completely submerged by the person she sees before her that she forgets her aches and pains and her weird confusing memories of the day before. All that matters is that ugly waste of space that stands before her.
The stinging in her arm pulls her away from the framed reflection, causing her to wince backward. Rubbing her tired eyes with one hand she groans trying to remember what happened yesterday. Sunday. The day they moved here. She left the house to go look around town but from there on it gets fuzzy. She grows frustrated, searching deeper but there’s just nothing there. This has happened before. Not remembering what happened the previous night. And yes, she knew the reason why but she didn’t know what she did. Did she say something stupid? Do something stupid? No, she’s just overthinking. It’s all fine. She woke up in her bed so there must be nothing wrong.
Slowly stripping off her clothes she tramples into the shower, scrubbing away the sweat and flush in her pale cheeks. The water soothes her back, cooling her warm head as she hums to a song she doesn’t know the lyrics to. Massaging her hair with strawberry shampoo, her delicate fingers weaving through the locks wondering what it would be like to have thicker, fuller hair. That maybe thicker hair that is lighter and skin that is more tanned would make her look prettier. Swilling out the foamed up soap she moves onto body wash. Moving her arms around her body with gritted teeth as her left arm throbs. So as her right-hand swipes over the delicate aching skin she finds the mark of evidence from last night. A new fresh hole that sits sobbing next to her collection of straight cuts and fellow dots, coating her left arm in purple and red lumps.
She traces her finger over the scars, her mind swimming through memories of each and every one of them. Showing her the exact moment each was placed. Replaying it in a mocking way. And so smiling tightly she drops her arm, turns off the shower, and shuffles back into her room. Throwing some headphones on her head and blasting on some random music, she slings on a T-shirt with a denim jacket and loose sweatpants. Tying her hair into a careless ponytail, throwing on some deodorant, and scrubbing some toothpaste on her teeth she walks downstairs.
There sits the eggs and bacon. Taking three mouthfuls, not even bothering to sit in the chair and then throwing the rest in the bin. She isn’t one to eat breakfast but hell, she’s the new girl. She can be anyone she wants to be, as her mum told her. And so as she grabs the house keys on the counter and starts stepping down the pavement, bopping her head to the strong beat in the music she thinks over her mother’s words. She could be anyone she wanted to be. A good girl, kind outgoing and caring towards everyone who blushes when a boy and girl even touch hands. A bad girl, who skips class and plays pranks on everyone and gets into fights on a regular basis. The weird kid, who sits at the back and has a mysterious past present and soon future. The nerd, who studies day and night for exams and would have a heart attack if they got a B+ instead of an A. The jock, who has no brain but is full of muscle everywhere else and has devoted their heart and soul to win a sport.
She has the choice of the latter. They’re just the cliche starter kits. She could build a new character. A new personality. They know nothing about her. She’s in control. She can change herself. But she isn’t smiling with glee, skipping down the path as her mind wanders around the possible character that she could create for herself. Planning her best friend or the nickname she would ask people to call her. Because she’s Lia Parkes. And right now, just then and back where she used to live she has always never, ever known who she is. What she is. So how does she change herself if she doesn’t even know what to change?
Hiya this is just some random free writing that I do when bored. It's a bit deeper than my usual stuff but it's just a way to experiment with emotions. I'll probably continue the story till the end but still, I'm curious about how I did with the start. What do you guys think?