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Chapter 3 Josephine

I’m crossing the parking lot just as the bell blares its obnoxious ringing throughout the grounds. Great! I hate being late and having to walk into class while everyone is already there but what I hate even more is having to go to the office to get a late pass from the secretary. I’ve never seen the woman be nice to anyone, come to think about it. The entire time I’ve gone to school here she’s always been a bitch to me, so I’m pretty sure she hasn’t liked me from day one. Uh screw it!

I decide I’m not in much of a mood to deal with people today so, instead of going to class I walk around the building and out of view from the main office. This side of the school leads slightly up hill to where a stone wall sits in the middle of two large pine trees. It used to be part of a sign with the school’s name on it before they remodeled and moved the front door to the other side of the parking lot. They added a brand-new sign near that door and they never removed the stone from the old one because they said it would cost too much in labor to tear it down and that they could use the money they saved to put toward the science and art wing; which I inform you, never happened.

I find myself hiding out here more often than I use to. Before I would actually push myself to go into the building and sit through lectures that bore the ever-living hell out of me, but now I can’t seem to be bothered with putting in as much effort. I do enough to get by and pass my classes but some days I just don’t want to deal.

I would rather sit here all day and watch people scrambling to their cars to keep from getting rained on and then laugh when they step in a pothole that’s the size of a small lake. Other days I just wonder what everyone else’s life is like when I don’t see them hanging around each other when school lets out. I think about what their houses look like and if they have parents that take care of them and love them? Do they care where their kids go or who they hang out with, or do they just let them do as they please and ignore them, like my family does? Ha, family. Does anyone here think about me or have any clue how shitty my life is by the way I look or how I act? Or do I hide it so well that I have now become invisible to everyone in this suffocating town?

I feel like the only reason I come to school now, sadly as it is, is to get away from the house. It’s better having to deal with the egotistical adults and burnouts at this place than to have to deal with the mess waiting for me back home. The longer I can be away from there the better because living with Jeff has been hell, since my mom left. I originally thought about running away when she first took off, but I’m smart enough to realize I wouldn’t get very far without a job and some place to stay. So, I’m unfortunately stuck here for a couple more years.

The rain starts to come down faster and harder now feeling like little pebbles every time they land on my head. I’m sitting under a large tree with a ton of branches but pine needles don’t make for the best coverage under a pending torrential downpour, so I’m not staying as dry as I would have liked. I wish I had stayed at the bookstore instead of coming here. But it’s too late for that, so I just pull my hood up over my head, nibble on my granola bar and stubbornly sit and listen to the new music I downloaded yesterday. I scroll through to find the song I want, sit back against the wall and close my eyes.

This is thankfully one of many places I can sit and be alone for a while; at least until school lets out. But on the days when the weather sucks, I can sit here and not be bothered for hours. I think people are afraid they’re going to melt or something if they let the rain touch them. Being alone in a quiet place like this has its perks, but when it’s too quiet, it lets my mind wander to the dark places that I try to avoid at all costs. Silence dredges up every little horrible thing that I could have avoided if my mom had never abandoned me and left me alone to deal with her asshole husband three years ago.

I never understood why my mom was so miserable after she married Jeff. We finally had everything we ever needed since he had a good job and she could take a break from working and focus on herself for a while. Jeff was always so nice to her at least. He would shower her with little gifts and buy her flowers, even cook her dinner and take her on vacations for just the two of them while Nate and I stayed home. It was nice to see her happy for a change, so I wasn’t that mad about being alone so

much. But that all seemed to change after they got married, and all of the bullshit started at the very same time.

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