Hey, guys! Here's chapter three, hope you all enjoy it :)
The piercing hurts like heck.
When I first see myself in the mirror after Bette pierces my nose, I can barely see any resemblance of my old self.
The ‘rock-chic’ haircut and the blue sparkly stud in my nose are one thing, but even the fact I’m wearing ripped Abercrombie shorts and a cute blue tank top with matching blue flip-flops is hugely different to the old me.
I picture myself as I was back when I was just starting out in high school. Chubby, and with thick-lenses in my wiry glasses, and braces I’d had for a year at least. A shapeless jumper and jeans, to make it less obvious I was far from a size zero. I was really nothing special.
It would’ve been better if I’d been invisible.
But I wasn’t.
It would’ve been better if I was really smart; but I only got the A grades when I worked for them, so I wasn’t a nerd. It would’ve been better if I was a band geek or in the chess club – but I wasn’t.
I shake my head, because none of that matters now, not here. I don’t have to be that person anymore. I’m forgetting about her.
I smile at my reflection. Definitely cool, daring and spontaneous.
I’m pretty pleased with myself as I walk home. Not just because of the piercing, and not just because a cute guy put his number in my cell phone, but because everything is finally looking up for me.
It’s getting better.
Well, it’s better up until I get home, at least.
“Is that you, Madison?”
“Considering I’m the only other person in this state who has a key to the house, no, Mom, it’s not me,” I call back.
The house smells of cooking, and I automatically know Dad’s been making pasta. I breathe in deeply; Dad’s cooking always smells amazing. Mom’s cooking often smells a little more… burnt.
“You’re just in time for dinner,” she says, popping her head around the kitchen door at the end of the hallway for a moment. As I take off my shoes and put down the carrier bag for my cell phone, she carries on, “Did you find a cell phone?”
“Yeah. It has internet and stuff.” I don’t specify the ‘stuff’ because I’m not entirely sure what the ‘stuff’ consists of just yet. I just know to send a text, make a phone call, and open Google.
She doesn’t even ask me how much it cost. She’s just glad I’m being like a normal teenager and I have a cell phone.
I walk into the kitchen, which is all wooden units and ceramic tiling, as Dad is dishing out pasta at the stove. I grab a plate and sit down at the table opposite where my parents are going to sit.
“Did you finish putting the rest of the boxes in the attic?” I ask.
“Yep,” Dad tells me smugly. Mom’s been bugging him to move all the boxes of old photo albums and old toys from when me and Jenna were kids – you know, the usual kind of junk you keep in attics – out of the spare room for days.
They sit down, then, and I realize just how fast and hard my heart is beating.
They haven’t noticed the nose piercing yet.
Maybe they won’t – at least for a couple of days. Or maybe they’ve noticed and miraculously just don’t care about it. I don’t know, but I’m not going to question it.
After a couple of minutes, Mom says, “You were out a long time.”
“I went to the café. To try and set up my cell phone. There was this guy who works there though, and he had to help me work it.”
“There was a guy?” Mom’s ears perk up at that. I knew they would.
“Yeah. He said he’s – well, he’s going to be a junior at the high school same as me.”
“Really? What’s he like? Was he cute?”
Yes, I think, he’s very cute.
But I shrug and say, “Sure. I guess. He was really nice, though. He said there’s a party at the beach tomorrow night. Like, a back-to-school thing, or something.”
“Did he ask you to go?”
I nod, but hastily add, “He just meant as friends, though. So I can meet people and whatnot.” I have to specify it’s not a date; Mom would go crazy if she thought her daughter, who was finally breaking out of her shell and becoming a normal sixteen year old girl, actually had a date.