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The first year of middle school couldn't have gone better. There were a few people from elementary who had opted to attend this school. I had chosen to take public transportation so I can go there. I needed a clean slate and I needed this to work. I had some money, I had new clothes, and I had a new personality to go with all of this.

Looks check clothes check, strength...well...I was scared to death but as one customer said: "Never let them see you sweat." They would break before I did. Everything would ride on what happens next. With a heavy sigh, I released my breath and entered into the doors of my new school. This day was going to be interesting.

"You're a bad bitch, Cathy" I said to myself to remind me who I needed to become.

I rationalized that I did exactly what I needed to be so that I wouldn't become a victim. Let me ask you something before I continue, do you think that you could have done the things that I had done to get to that moment?

It was a different time, sure, obviously the methods get changed over time but that's not what we're talking about here. If you are unhappy with your life, have you asked yourself what you are willing to do to change your happiness? Think about it while I tell you more about this first day.

It was huge in that building. Looking back though, it wasn't that big but it felt pretty massive. There was also an air about the place. Tougher. Perhaps I chose the wrong school? 'Keep it together' I scolded myself. There would be no gentle reminders today. This needed to go well and it was going to go well. Anything else was unacceptable.

Do you really think you have what it takes to beat down all the goodness inside of you to become like those who tormented you? I'm not sure you should answer that question. I'm not sure that you should become strong enough to face the many faces that looked at you with envy in their eyes.

Ask yourself, could you truly become something that you didn't think you would become only to gain a semblance of control over yourself? I didn't think so. If you say "But I was going to say yes." I'd say you are a dirty liar and you should remember your place...beneath me. So, where was I?

My resolve was strong I would not be broken. Not today. I had to find the group that I wanted to be a part of and take it from there. Goodbye old friends, goodbye old life, welcome to the big league. During classes, I was still myself. I had to be. If I forgot about that it would all be for nothing.

I wasn't about to be a dumb woman who had no prospects or future other than what her husband could provide to her.

I wasn't about to make my aunt correct when she said to me "Cathy, you shouldn't set your expectations too high in this life. You will most likely become barefoot, pregnant and on welfare just like your mother."

Nope, sorry auntie, I would stand on my own and conquer the world. If you thought this was THAT kind of story, I'm sorry to burst your bubble. Not all mean girls are dumb, we can pretend though. Pretending can be fun. To make someone think that they are better than you only to show them later how wrong they were. That is true control. That is power. THAT is what I craved. Absolute control.

I found my new crew quickly and walked over to their table. My step lacked the confidence that I was trying to exude. I needed to do better. 'Get.it.together' I cursed at myself. 'I would not be broken. Not today.'

Those words would become my mantra. I sat my tray down at the table. No, I didn't ask for permission. They looked at me, one of the girls lifted her eyebrow as she said "hello" with as much disdain as she could muster.

"What's up?" I replied.

One of the guys sitting at the table looked me over. He had me in his sights as I knew he would because I caught him glancing at me as I walked over. This would be easier than I thought.

"Hey there cutie," he said. I smirked.

I wasn't into that one. 'Play the game.' "Hey, you guys all come from the same school?".

He smiled wide "Yeah, how'd you know?"

Idiot. How did I know? What a moron. Keep it cool. Remember, he is your way in. "You were all sitting together and you look like you know each other." He looked shocked. Duh. Goodness gracious, this guy was a piece of work.

I opted to sit at a table with a group I didn't know. I didn't ask for permission, I just took a seat, pretending that they weren't even there. The girl looks over at me, assessing the situation, was I a friend or foe. One of my oldest friends saw me and she was smiling and waving at me.

I should have been worried but it was alright, I was going to take her with me. She just didn't know it yet. She came over and asked to sit down. I motioned for her to sit and the other girl said snidely "please, feel free, have a seat, make yourself comfortable."

My friend wasn't too smart. She didn't hear the tone. If she did, that girl was better than me at hiding it. "thanks" she replied cheerfully. I couldn't hide the smirk that formed on my mouth. This was going to be interesting. Let the games begin.

"So...my name is Michelle and you are?" she looked at me.

I look up from eating and I raise an eyebrow. I wanted her to know that she was bothering me but still be nice. With a heavy sigh, I replied. "I'm Catherine and this is Amanda." pointing towards my best friend.

"Nice to meet you. What school are you from?" she asked and I told her.

I had taken her off center. She warmed to me faster than I had anticipated. Our conversation ended up being quite lively. We talked about different things, mostly we talked about what we did during the summer.

It was at that moment that he entered the room. Yes, I suppose this IS that kind of story. He was so attractive I thought I had died and gone to heaven. This one would be mine. I had decided. When he made his way over to our table I knew it was fate. The dimple in his cheek was just too much.

He walked over to the guy that set next to Michelle. The big oaf looking guy. The dumb one that skated by on his looks and who believed that everyone wanted him. The guy who had been staring at me the entire time I was sitting there. The guy who didn't realize that I did not once meet his gaze.

He knew my future husband (not really but that's what I thought at the time). This might be problematic. Mr. Beautiful walked over to big oaf and said had hovered "Move over" he said.

Oh yes...he was perfect. This would be very good indeed. This one would be mine.

The big oaf moves over squeezing his body closer to Michelle who now wore an annoyed look on her face.

"Hi," I said to Mr. Beautiful.

He saw me for the first time. I watched a hint of pink blush his cheeks. Adorable. "Hi," he said, lowering his eyes.

The confidence he had portrayed just a moment ago was gone. I was confused for a moment but quickly recovered. Yes. 'He would be mine.' Michelle rolled her eyes and introduced us. For the sake of this story, I will refer to him as Mr. Beautiful. He deserves it, he was truly stunning to look at and he was smart.

I didn't know he was smart at the time but sitting next to big oaf it wasn't that hard to seem smart. By the time the bell rang we were in.

"So, are you going to join us for lunch?" big oaf asked.

I looked at Mr. Beautiful "will you be there?" he looked at me, surprise in his eyes.

"Yeah," he said, the blush returning.

"Ok, maybe I'll join you."

"Sure...that's cool," he said keeping his eyes fixed on mine.

Amanda was smiling at big oaf, poor thing, if she and big oaf had kids I would feel truly sorry for those little idiots. Heavy help them both.

"We'll see you later" she waved to big oaf.

He smiled at her and winked at me. I rolled my eyes. I tried to prevent it from happening it was just...yuck. Maybe this wasn't going to be as easy as I had thought after all.

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Author's Note: Thank you for coming this far on the journey with me. If you liked it please mark it and I welcome your comments.

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