Blogophilia Week 7.9 Topic:
Hard (Two Points):
Have a Character Walk Backwards
Easy (One Point!):
Incorporate a Line From Poet Robert Burns
(To A Mountain Daisy)(1786) (Poem):
Wee, modest crimson-tipped flow'r,
Be sure to read my previous chapters....
And now...Chapter Three
"Oh, child," Nora says to me when I arrive back inside from my jog. "Y'all had me worried about you."
"I'm sorry, Nora," I say. "My hat flew off, and some boy caught my hat and started talking to me."
"Oh, a boy! Girl, you should add that to your list."
I just love her thick, New Orleans accent. I wish I had an accent like that, but I don't. It's just a regular kind of speak. There are some parts of Florida that don't have an actual accent due to people who move down here from all parts of the world and such.
I turn and walk backwards so I can see Nora's face better. I know she wants me to be happy, but I have better plans.
"You know having a boyfriend is not on my list, nor will it ever be," I reply. I turn back around and walk in my room where my school clothes are laid out. Nora has a white button-down shirt and a pleated dark blue skirt waiting for me on the bed.
"You do know this is not a traditional private school I'm going to, right?" I call out to her.
At the prestigious Calusa Fields High School, the dressing option is pretty much open. You just have to dress in a more professional manner. Though you are allowed to wear jeans on Fridays, it's not a very strict dress code like if you were going to a Catholic school or something. You just can't wear any flip-flops or tank tops--clothing like that are not presentable anyway, in my opinion.
"Of course I know that, child," Nora responds as she enters the room. She walks over to the bed, and picks up the shirt, and walks it over to me. "These colors just go with your skin tone so well. I just want you to make a great first impression."
I give her a warm smile. "Thank you." I don't argue with Nora. I trust her judgement. She brushes my hair with her hand, and walks out of the room so I can get dressed.
I put on the clothes, but start feeling awkward at my bare legs. I head for my dresser to find a pair of leggings to put on underneath my skirt. I put on a blue pair of leggings to go with my skirt. I want to make it look like it's a part of my outfit. I then put on white ankle-length socks, and my dark blue Converse sneakers. I am pretty sure I am under-dressed, but I don't care. At least I'm presentable.
A few months back, when I went to enroll for my senior year, I saw how the girls dressed. They wear high heels and matching purses. I've always been kind of girly, but never that kind of girl. Even though I took ballet, I still love to watch a good hockey game on TV. I take a deep breath, and I head out of the room.
"You look so nice," Nora says to me. "But why hide your nice legs? You should really add meeting a boy to your list."
Nora wants so much for me to live the normal teenage life. There is no such thing as normal anyway. I do know, however, I don't want to add boyfriend to my list.
I started making a list for myself when I was about twelve years old. Most would call it a bucket list, but I don't like that term. A bucket list makes things in life seem so FINAL. I'd rather call it a living list as opposed to a bucket list. I get there was a movie called the Bucket List, but it seems it's become a rather cliche term these days.
One thing on my living list is to enroll in school. I have that checked off. The next one is cheerleading tryouts, which will be today after school. I don't have time for a boyfriend, which is what I finally say to Nora.
"If you say so, child," she says with a smile.
I know that look. She has a gift for knowing things. Sometimes I grow a little curious as to what she knows, but I also know there is a certain balance in this world and perhaps, I'm not meant to learn what it is until later on.
I give her a hug, tell her I love her, and head out the door to my first day of school. I walk out the door where there is a car and driver waiting for me. This is not an unusual thing for someone like me to see.
Because my parents do have money, they only want what's best for me. That includes a driver, and my own personal bodyguard--who obviously ignored my request to take the day off so I won't be embarrassed that I have to go to school with a driver and a bodyguard. At least the driver listened to me when I said I didn't want to take the limo--that I wanted to be as inconspicuous as possible. I guess the brand new black SS Impala can be disguised as inconspicuous.
I sigh as I get in the back of the car. Smith--my bodyguard--shuts my door as I get inside. I watch as he opens the front passenger door, gets in, and puts on his seat belt.
I pretty much say nothing, but I beg of Smith to not stay so close as I would like to make at least one friend this school year. He nods his head, though I can't tell if he will listen to my wishes as he has not done so already.
I get into the school, and I immediately feel eyes focused on me. Of course they would be focused on me, I am the new girl after all.
"Hey, check out the new wine," I hear a guy say, but I don't even bother to look up, and I decide to keep on walking down the hallway. I have to head to the office to officially sign in, and get my class schedule. But I don't even get that far. Not even two seconds that guy mentioned something about new wine, I feel an arm cross with my arm.
I look with wide eyes to see a girl walking with me. "Don't mind my brother and his friends," she says to me. I wasn't planning on it, but I say nothing of it. "They're always interested in new people. Well, not my brother so much, but his friends are."
"Oh," is the only thing I can manage to say. I've not had anyone to really talk to in a couple of years with the exception of Nora, and the other help that's around. I guess I can be a bit timid when it comes to having conversations with others.
"You're the quiet type until they get to know you, aren't you?" The girl asks me. It's almost as if she can read my mind or something.
I shrug. "I guess," I say to her.
"Oh," she exclaims. "I can see we are going to be the best of friends. My name is Cristi. There's no H in my name, and it ends in an I rather than a Y. My real name is Alexis Cristine, but everyone calls me Cristi. I think it was because that was the first name I could say properly when I was little. Oh, but enough about me. What's your name?"
"Kalura," I reply. "It's a combination of Kaleb with a K, and Laura, which are the names of my parents."
"Oh, what a wonderful name," she replies. "I can call you Kallie for short."
I had never quite thought of the name Kallie before, but it does have a nice ring to it.
"So," Cristi begins. "What's your first class?"
"Um, I don't know yet," I answer candidly. "I have to go to the office to pick up a schedule."
"Well, let me help you, if you don't mind."
I look at her gratefully. "No, please," I say. "Thank you."
We head to the office, where Cristi seems to know everyone there. It's like she's a very friendly and popular person. I wish I had long, wavy blonde hair like she does. It almost seems to bounce with every turn she makes. My hair is short, straight, and not so blonde like hers. My hair color is considered a dirty blonde, perhaps more of a light brown kind of a color. Right now, my hair is all one length, and it lays about down to my chin.
"You ready for your first class?" She asks, breaking me out of my reverie. I look up at her sparkling emerald eyes.
I take a deep breath. "I guess I'm as ready as I'll ever be."
"Great," she smiles. "What's your first class?"
"Um," I begin as I look down at my schedule. "Poetry with Club."
"Oh, Mr. Club is an awesome teacher! And it just so happens we have the same class together! I'll walk with you."
"Alright," I say. "Thanks."
"Maybe we can compare notes on our schedules. I can show you what classes you need to go to after."
"I-I don't want to put you out," I stammer a bit. "Are you sure?"
"Really," she replies. "It's not a problem."
I express my gratitude again as we enter the classroom. I hand Mr. Club my schedule. He takes a look at it, and looks back at me.
"Kallie is new here," Cristi says from behind me. "I'll be showing her around today."
Mr. Club hands me back my schedule and clears his throat. "Please, Ms. Wise," he calls me by my last name. "Have a seat, and welcome to poetry class."
Cristi automatically picks out a seat for me, and she sits at the desk next to me.
"Now," Mr. Club clears his throat. He starts to recite a poem:
"Wee, modest crimson-tipped flow'r,
"Thou's met me in an evil hour;
"For I maun crush amang the stoure
"Thy slender stem:
"To spare thee now is past my pow'r,
"Thou bonie gem.
"Alas! it's no thy neibor sweet,
"The bonie lark, companion meet,
"Bending thee 'mang the dewy weet,
"Wi' spreckl'd breast!
"When upward-springing, blythe, to greet
"The purpling east.
"Cauld blew the bitter-biting north
"Upon thy early, humble birth;
"Yet cheerfully thou glinted forth
"Amid the storm,
"Scarce rear'd above the parent-earth
"Thy tender form.
"The flaunting flow'rs our gardens yield,
"High shelt'ring woods and wa's maun shield;
"But thou, beneath the random bield
"O' clod or stane,
"Adorns the histie stibble field,
"There, in thy scanty mantle clad,
"Thy snawie bosom sun-ward spread,
"Thou lifts thy unassuming head
"In humble guise;
"But now the share uptears thy bed,
"And low thou lies!
"Such is the fate of artless maid,
"Sweet flow'ret of the rural shade!
"By love's simplicity betray'd,
"And guileless trust;
"Till she, like thee, all soil'd, is laid
"Low i' the dust.
"Such is the fate of simple bard,
"On life's rough ocean luckless starr'd!
"Unskilful he to note the card
"Of prudent lore,
"Till billows rage, and gales blow hard,
"And whelm him o'er!
"Such fate to suffering worth is giv'n,
"Who long with wants and woes has striv'n,
"By human pride or cunning driv'n
"To mis'ry's brink;
"Till wrench'd of ev'ry stay but Heav'n,
"He, ruin'd, sink!
"Ev'n thou who mourn'st the Daisy's fate,
"That fate is thine-no distant date;
"Stern Ruin's plough-share drives elate,
"Full on thy bloom,
"Till crush'd beneath the furrow's weight,
"Shall be thy doom!"
Mr. Club pauses for dramatic effect. This much I can tell. He inhales and says, "Can anyone tell me what Robert Burns is referring to in his poem, 'To A Mountain Daisy'?"
He looks around, and calls upon someone raising their hand. "Yes," he asks.
"That he's comparing flowers to humanity," the voice says.
I know I've heard that voice before, and not too long ago. I turn and look to see it's that boy I met at the park while I was jogging; I believe he said his name was Xander. I start thinking about things; like how much of a coincidence it is I happen to see Xander in the same classroom as me. Or better yet, how smart he seems to be. He knows his poetry well, or so it seems.
I quickly look back to my book and try to focus on the poem. I can't help but feel someone staring at me. I have one of those instincts where I know if someone is staring at me or not. I get a chilly feeling on my neck. I look around to notice only one pair of eyes watching me. It's Xander.
I must have tipped him off or something. Just then, I noticed another pair of eyes on me. It was only Cristi. The bell rings in my favor before anything else can happen.
As we walk out the door, Cristi gets close enough to speak in a secretive manner. "I noticed my brother was staring at you! He doesn't usually stare at girls. I thought for sure he was into boys, but the way he was staring at you--"
"Wait," I interrupt. "Xander is your brother?"
She gives me a big smile. "Ah, so you met him already?"
"Briefly this morning on my jog."
"Well, he is really into you."
"Into me?" I question. I can't imagine why! Despite having olive-toned skin, I'm very pale. I could possibly be passed off as a zombie or a child of the night. If not for the foundation I wear, people would surely see the bags under my eyes and assume I have a craving for brains.
I wonder what the universe is trying to tell me. First I meet Xander early this morning, and then at school I become friends with his sister? I feel like I've suddenly entered into a labyrinth of some sort. But like every labyrinth in life I've ever been through, surely I can get myself out of this one!