"Remember, no talking, no eating, no getting up, and no sleeping," Vice Principal Darwin barks at me.
"Where is everyone else?" I squeak, avoiding her wolfish glare.
"They're coming, they're coming," Darwin deadpans and she starts leafing through her magazine.
How she expect me not to eat or sleep or do anything?! Detention is not for people like me. Detention is for troublemakers, not for people who are pacifists and bake cookies for the homeless. I have never been more bored in my life. Mom promised me she would pick me up after detention and I am already counting down the minutes till her blue Toyota arrives in the parking lot. I hope there aren't any more students because I do not want anyone remembering my hideous accident. Forget being popular, forget being noticed, forget trying to exist in Austin; I am just going to live the rest of tenth grade in the oblivion they call unpopularity. Farkle said that the accident didn't matter and that we were still friends but what about other people? People who are gonna remember me as the biggest loser in school when I graduate. People who are never gonna sign my yearbook or vote me as homecoming queen or even see me as a potential friend. I want people to know my name. I want them to see me as head cheerleader or Homecoming Queen or the coolest girl in school. I don't want to be nobody. I want to be somebody, because when you're somebody; your life is set.
"WE'RE HERE!" a voice yells and I turn my head around to see Maya Hart and her band of rebels. Once again, I swoon over the cute guy with green eyes. He looks so perfect yet he is definitely not if he hangs out with Maya Hart.
I barely know her yet I already know her reputation as the biggest rebel in Meadowbrook. Farkle literally knows everything about her. In her freshman year, Maya Hart once put an entire flock of live chickens in Principal Adams' office. She once decorated the school library with graffiti curse words. Her stories of epic adventures echoed through the halls of Meadowbrook High and were forever etched in Farkle's mind. And everything she does; she does it with her crew. No wonder she was in detention.
"Sit down and shut up!" Darwin shouts and Maya and her crew complied while rolling their eyes for a nanosecond.
Now that they were sitting next to me, I can clearly see the boys' faces. One of them had spiky dark hair, wore a leather jacket, and was an 8.5 on the cute meter. Another one of them was African American and wore a plaid shirt. He gets a cute rating of 7.9, an 8.0 if he went to a gym. And well, I got to admire the cute third guy up close. He looked even hotter when he was within my reach. He had short hair that was the color of dark honey. His face was perfectly sculpted with his full lips, straight nose, and angular jawline. I could gaze at his deep-set, emerald green eyes forever. On a scale of 1 to 10, he was an 11. Of course, I had to keep my staring at a minimum or else I would look creepy. I knew the boys' names (Zay, Brandon, Lucas) but I didn't know which name to assign to what face.
"Okay, before we start your punishment, give me your phones," Darwin commands.
"What?" I exclaim.
"Well, you don't know me, Matthews, but I have a strict no-phones-during-detention rule. Now fork it over!" Darwin shouts.
I begrudgingly hand my iPhone 6 over. The other kids turn in their phones and Darwin places them all in a box and locks it inside a drawer. There's no way to get it back.
By order of Vice Principal Darwin, we had to keep silent and at our desks. I didn't talk to any the boys or Maya. The others however, seemed to have their own silent language. Imagine what they were saying about me! I want to get out of here as quickly as possible.
For the first twenty minutes, I just stared at the clock (while simultaneously staring at the boys). Then I took out my bottle of nail polish and began redoing my top coat on my manicure. Darwin didn't notice me or the smell of nail polish in the air, she just read her magazine. Maya took out two pencils and started drumming on her desk. But of course, Darwin got annoyed and snatched the pencils away. Maya didn't fight at all; she just let her take away her makeshift drumsticks and went back to staring blankly at the clock.
After thirty minutes, Darwin stood up and announces, "I have to go to my office to do some paperwork but I am no dummy, so you will all be locked in here. And if any of you think of picking the lock and escaping, the janitor will be watching you if I can't."
She leaves the room, but not without making a big showing of her locking the door. We were trapped. Or well, I was trapped with a bunch of no-good misfits.
After an uncomfortable five minutes, Maya talks for the first time in forever. "I miss my phone," she announces like it was important.
"So do I," one of boys reply.
"What do you think, Matthews?" Maya asks. "Do you want your phone back?"
For a moment, I thought she was talking to someone else.
"Uh, I guess?" I stutter.
"Then let's break them out," she says, pulling out a bent paper clip from her pocket.
Her friends share a devilish smile before running to the locked drawer and picking the lock. I just watched them wriggle the wire into the lock and twisting it. They all stared at the safe with huge eyes as Maya picked it. But she was unsuccessful.
"Dang it!" she shouts and the rest of the boys groan.
I stare at the locked drawer, imagining my phone in my hand again. I need my phone back in my hand. An idea pops into my head.
I pull out the bobby pin in my hair and I suggest, "How about we use this?"
Maya instantly snatches it out of my hand and starts picking the lock again. This time, the drawer opens and I am reunited with my baby.
"Pretty clever, Matthews," Maya compliments. "I'm Maya and this is Brandon, Zay, and Lucas."
So Brandon is the leather-jacket boy, Zay is the African-American guy, and Lucas is the hottie.
"I'm Riley," I say.
"Aren't you the new girl who wiped out in the cafeteria earlier?" Zay asks.
I blush and say, "Yeah, I'm that girl now."
"I thought it was hilarious," Brandon comments.
"Let me guess," Maya says. "You're the type of girl who aspires to be part of Missy's crew. Guess what? Too bad, because Missy is a snake and she does not like the new kids. And now you're all upset because you'll never be popular at this school. Well, guess what? The universe is too busy fixing up all the war, poverty, and hatred in the world to notice your popularity problem."
My jaw drops. She thinks I'm some sort of brat! I am not that dramatic!
"Sheesh," Lucas responds. "You don't have to be so tough on her."
"I'm just giving her a reality check," Maya mutters.
"I have friends here," I say. "Farkle showed me the ropes here."
"Isn't he the guy who makes goo-goo eyes at Maya all the time?" Brandon asks.
"Dude's a loser," Maya says. She grabs her phone and climbs up onto her desk. A song blasts from her cell and she starts dancing.
"Party," Zay yells and they all start a dance party in the classroom. At first, I was worried if Darwin would come in again but the beat of music finally lets me relax.
I start doing all my crazy dance moves. For a moment, the others stare at me but then Maya broke the ice by saying, "You got some sick moves, Matthews."
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