Today was a big day. Graduation day. A month ago he was in a coma and moved into his mother’s home and now, he was walking the stage. He looked heavenward.
“I did it, Mom. I’m graduating,” Fox whispered to the ceiling.
Fox stood in the dressing room at the performance hall where his graduation was being held. He was dressed in black dress pants and a deep forest green button-down shirt. His usually-spiked hair was combed neatly. He cleaned up nicely. The boys had black robes and caps while the girls had navy blue. Fox zipped up his robe and looked in the mirror.
“This robe makes me look like a goober,” he muttered.
“Well, I think you look handsome,” a voice behind him said.
Fox looked over at Samantha and wanted to bolt. He was a little surprised that Cyanide wasn’t growling or snarling.
"She’s up to something. Just play along for the time being,” Cyanide said calmly.
“Fox, I owe you an apology,” Samantha said, softly and sadly.
“What for? What did you do wrong?” he asked, playing along.
“I wasn’t there for you when you got hurt. I just sort of vanished. A good mate is always there.”
Fox looked at Samantha and inwardly sighed as Cyanide huffed.
“I forgive you, though I was sleeping half the time and would’ve barely remembered if you were there,” he lied through his teeth.
Samantha hugged Fox gently, not sure if he was still hurt or hurting. She let go and looked at him, and then fussed with his robe and cap, making sure the tassel was on the right side. The two looked at the TV screen when it came to life.
“Attention students and families. We are ready to begin the ceremony. Families, please take your seats and students please head backstage,” the principal announced.
The TV flickered to the screensaver it had been on and the two headed for the stage. Fox sat in his seat. Despite everything, he was valedictorian. He knew if his mother were alive she would be very proud of him.
Fox watched the ceremony go on with everyone getting their diplomas. He retrieved his diploma when his name was called and returned to his place on stage. Soon came time for his speech.
“Now our valedictorian, Fox Kane!” the principal announced proudly.
Polite applause sounded as Fox stood up and walked to the podium to deliver the speech he made up on the fly, because he had been busy with other things. When the clapping stopped, he began.
“Class of twenty nineteen. What a year it has been. We’ve all had our ups and downs, some more than others, but what makes me happy is that we never gave up. We kept fighting until we saw on our calendars that we would soon be free from the shackles of high school!” Fox said and laughed with the audience. “However, the journey of life is far from over. We must now venture out and tackle life. Some of us plan to go to college while the rest of us aren’t sure what is in store for us and that’s okay! It’s okay not to know. So stumble, fall, eat dirt, get back up, and just keep fighting. You’ll find your answer. Follow your heart, chase your dreams, and more importantly get a little messy. Life’s messy, so why not? Congrats class of twenty nineteen! Good luck in the real world!”
The audience and students clapped and cheered. Then turned their tassels and tossed their caps into the air, then turned to hug fellow classmates.