Don't Smile At Me

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Bandera University is the perfect place for Winifred Evans to forget about all the woes of middle school and all the could-have-beens of high school. Until she meets the too-familiar face of her 'rival' Lucas Poole.

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Winifred's New Beginning

1- Winifred's New Beginning

Winifred Evans does not get the luxury of arriving at her dorm room first. She’s actually the last one to arrive, much to her displeasure. With a frown, she drags her feet methodically against the welcome mat three times.

There’s music playing loudly in one of the back rooms, low and soulful. Murmurs of why did you break my heart? and sorrowful i’m nothin without you baby’s. She stood in the doorway to the suite, listening to the sound of someone else’s depressing music.

The door opened behind her and she jumped. “Sorry” She muttered and pulled her suitcases to the side clumsily.

“Nah. You’re fine. You the last one?” The girl has short buzzed hair, dyed a grayish-purple color. Her eyes are brown, framed by winged eyeliner. Her lips are painted the same color as her hair, and when Winifreds eyes draw downwards to them, they twitch upwards in the line of a smirk.

“Yeah” She mumbled stupidly, inwardly cursing herself for her awkwardness. Winifred didn’t have the confidence to stare at her face much longer, choosing instead to focus on her roommate’s chunky black boots. There was a smidge of dirt on the side, but she kept quiet about it.

“Cool. I’m Nora” Nora flashed her another wicked smirk. “I’m guessing you don’t know where your room is, do you?”

Winifred shook her head, mouth suddenly feeling dry. Her hands tightly clench around the handle to her suitcase and then unclench. Girls that looked like Nora, bad and dangerous, rough edges, girls like Nora made Winifred anxious.

Nora, who seemed to pick up on her obvious discomfort, smiled a bit more gently and pointed down the hall. “After you pass the bathroom, its the first room on the left”

“Thanks” She replied tersely. Nora only nodded at her and then proceeded to slip on earbuds. Taking that as an end to their ‘conversation’, Winifred followed Nora’s directions and continued past the bathroom, stopping mechanically in front of the first door on the left.

“It’s small,” She remarked quietly, as she stared into her new room. The walls were a boring white color, with a small, twin-sized bed tucked into a corner. There was a brown dresser and a decently sized closet. Even her old room at the orphanage was bigger than this.

By the time she finished unpacking and tidying up the room, the sky had already turned into the darkness of night. Her stomach rumbled, and she stared down at it. Guess I better go eat then huh? For a second, she debated whether or not she should invite Nora and her other roommate, whose name was Sama-something or the other.

But inviting them meant she would have to physically get up and talk to them. What if they already ate? Or if they weren’t hungry? That would just be embarrassing. Winifred stared down at her shoes with a scowl.

“Oh! Winnie! You still up?” Sama-something’s voice was loud, carrying over the room in waves. She jumped, and her roommate laughed. “Sorry, didn’t mean to scare ya. Or laugh. You’re just so...jumpy y’know?”

Winifred frowned.

Sama-whoever laughed nervously. “Well, it’s like, um, you know?”

“Did you need something?” Winifred asked, stepping back unconsciously.

“Nora was thinking of heading down to the commons. Wanna come eat with us?” Sama-whatwashername ran a hand through her waist-long hair. She stared at it, entranced.

“You have pretty hair” She blurted out and then turned bright red.

“Oh,” Her roommate said, clearly surprised. God, she wanted to die. “Thanks, I guess?”

“Your welcome” Winifred muttered, hands hanging limply by her sides. “Um, I’m not really hungry, so I’ll pass”

Liar, Sama’s gaze seemed to say. But instead, she nodded slowly, and said, “Okay then. Well, maybe next time?”

Winifred nodded dumbly. “Next time” She parroted, giving the other girl what was supposed to be a soft smile. Sama closed the door and then called out to Nora and a few minutes later, Winifred heard the front door close.

Her stomach rumbled again, clearly protesting against declining the offer to eat with her roommates. “I’ll just wait a little bit and then leave” She whispered to herself, and began to start on her statistics homework.

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