Chapter Three

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He looks at me, scared and not wanting to be seen.

"Who are you?" I ask, waiting for him to respond.

"I am... a friend of your dad's. You must be Diana, right? It's great to finally meet you. He told me he had a daughter but never did he describe how grown up you were." He seemed nervous in his response, but friendly nonetheless. "Oh and my name is Gary, by the way. Gary Ross." He goes out to shake my hand, and I follow through, while noticing his strong grip. This man must work in a business field.

"Yes, I am Diana. It's nice to meet you too." He smiles. "So how do you know my father?" I have never seen him before; he hasn't been at my dad's Friday poker games with his drinking buddies.

"We know each other from work. I just recently moved to a different branch in the dealership, selling cars with your father and some other very nice gentlemen. I used to work up in managing, but my boss told me I should help sell cars for a while to get more of a feel on how the business world works. Most people have to make their way up to the top, but my good friend, Mr. Carson, used to own the company and gave me a job. Sadly, he has left unexpectedly but our new manager let me keep my position as long as I sell cars for a bit as well." He uses hand gestures when he talks, which I pick up on. I also mentally pat myself on the back for guessing he worked in business.

"Well it was very nice to meet you, but I have to go and start my homework. I think my dad is outside on the patio." I point towards the patio and he walks over there, thanking me as he leaves. When he is gone, I clean up everything I used for my sandwich and climb up the stairs to my room.

Since my family hasn't always had a ton of money, our house is pretty small. My bedroom has always felt constricting, because there's only room for a twin bed and a desk. I try to make the most of it though. I like to place pictures to fill my wall; they are mostly of popular bands, famous celebrities, or just something I saw that was interesting and decided to take a picture of. But in addition to these, I have pictures of my mother, or the three of us as one happy family. I like to look at them every now and then to take a second to remember how good it felt to not have a broken family. I feel like the past is an excellent tool. Though it may bring up terrible memories, it can also make you think about the good times, the times that you felt happy, excited, or just free. I desperately hold onto these memories, for it is the only thing that holds me together.

I take a seat at my desk and pull out my assignments reluctantly. Homework, or schoolwork in general, has always been a struggle for me. My problem is that I'm not motivated at all. These past few years of school have been the most difficult. I've barely kept all C's in my classes, to make sure I'm not so far behind, but I don't have to work as hard. I wish that our middle school teachers told us the truth about how hard high school was and how much they wanted of you. In middle school, I barely had any homework and didn't feel the need to work hard in any way because grades at those times are completely worthless. Now, maintaining good grades and doing well will determine if you even get a chance at a bright future. That's too much pressure to put on someone so young. Also, now that I'm a senior I am expected to know what career path I want to choose, and I still have no idea what I want to do.

Since it's almost time for midterms, I have a lot of studying to do. Jared is helping me with my history and I am very thankful I have him, but I still have math, English, and Science tests to prepare for and I have less than a week. I really want to do well on these tests, or at least try to. My mom always told me that I can do great things, but I have to put in some effort. So, I've decided to try for her.


"Hey! How did it go yesterday? Sorry I couldn't help you, but the championships are coming up and coach really wants us to practice more to get ready. So who tutored you?" Sierra was always so curious, like me. Whenever something happened, she always had a million questions to bombard me with. I don't mind though. It's nice to have someone asking and thinking about me.

"It was Jared Carson. Do you know him? He's really popular but he's crazy smart too. He was a little mad because I don't think he wanted to tutor in his spare time, but he eased up a little towards the end until I accidentally let a textbook fall onto his foot. It was so embarrassing and I felt awful." She got really excited when I brought up his name.

"JARED CARSON?! I never would have guessed. How could someone so hot also be smart? It's not fair! No one should be able to have everything. Did you hear he's dating Jasmin now? Gosh she's gorgeous. Sorry I'm rambling but that's awesome. I would love to have him as my tutor, though hopefully we would do a little more than study," she says with a smirk plastered over her face and we both laugh. "Sadly, soccer must be my boyfriend for now. I can't let anything distract me from winning."

Sierra has had several boyfriends but she ended up dumping all of them. She says the chase is better than the actual relationship, but I've never really understood that concept. If you go through all the trouble of liking a guy, wouldn't dating him be better?

My relationships, though, haven't been as successful as hers. I've only had two, and both times we dated for about a month and dumped me because they said I was too boring. I can understand how they would think that; I never really do anything other than watch T.V. and stare at the pictures on my walls. I've never really done anything fun like go to parties and get drunk, and because I didn't want to, I got dumped.

Sierra begins to wave her hand over my face and I notice that I haven't been paying attention. "Sorry," I say. "I was just thinking about midterms," I lie, but I'm not sure why. "I'm scared about how I will do."

"That's okay," she answers. "I'm sure you'll do fine. Just listen to Jared and study your heart out. I got to get going but I'll see you at lunch. How about we meet after school?" I nod, but then stop her.

"I have tutoring again today. We're doing it every day until the tests. But I'll see you at lunch!" I don't have any classes with Sierra because she takes the advanced ones.

Walking to first period, I notice Jared hanging out with his friends and all their girlfriends. He laughs along with the rest of them but I can see that somehow he is different than them. I'm not sure how yet.

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