Diary of an American Girl

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"You’re starting here tomorrow"

Madison leaned against the wall in the student center hallway, scrolling through her messages on her cellphone. Becky had sent her a new text message. “I didn’t see you in class today,” she said. “I hope you’re okay.”

“I’m at Baldwin with my mother,” relied Madison.

“What are you doing there?” asked Becky.

“Mother was serious after all,” said Madison.

“No way,” said Becky. “Are you still coming to my sleepover?”

“I can’t,” said Madison. “Mother wants me up early tomorrow, so she can take me to Baldwin.”

Madison’s mother stepped out of the registration office. “I ordered your uniform,” she said.

Madison placed her cellphone in her purse. “Mom, I don’t like this place,” she said.

“You’ll have all year to get used to it,” said her mother.

Madison groaned. “Are you even listening?” she asked, her voice echoing in the hallway. A few girls stopped and stared at them.

“You haven’t even given it a chance,” said her mother. Madison took a couple of steps away from her mother. Her eyes narrowed on her mother, and then she ran down the hallway to the exit.

Madison climbed into the minivan in the parking lot. She sent a text message to Becky. “I told Mother I didn’t want to, but she didn’t listen, like always!” she said.

“I’m sorry,” replied Becky.

Her mother got in the minivan and shut the door. “This sucks,” said Madison. “I don’t want to be here.”

“You’re starting here tomorrow,” she said, starting the minivan.

“You can’t make me,” said Madison.

“It’s not up for discussion,” she said. She began backing the minivan out of the parking space.

Madison mouthed the words fuck you.

“Excuse me,” said her mother, looking at Madison’s reflection in the rearview mirror. She stepped on the brake pedal, and the vehicle halted.

Madison looked out her window.

“You’re starting here tomorrow,” said her mother. “Now, I won’t hear another word about it from you. When we get home, you’ll go to your room.”

“Whatever,” said Madison, and she crossed her arms over her chest.

Dear Diary,

I’m going mad. My mother really is a tyrant. She doesn’t even listen anymore. I should run away. I could get a plane ticket to Venice with the money I saved from my allowance.

I didn’t get anything from Brian today. Not even a “hello.” I guess he forgot about me completely. Why not? Everybody is doing it. Maybe in a few days I won’t even exist!

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