Chapter 3 ^.^

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  "Come on my lovelies! Time for school!'' A voice sang, my eyes fluttered open. Mom skipped down the hall, fully dressed. A sleepy smile took hold of my lips as I sat up, rubbing my tangle of dark hair. "Mom! Slow down!" Kaylah cried, bronze curls bouncing has she flew past my open door. I gave a short, silent laugh before stretching and getting ready. I hobbled over to my closet, musing on what to wear.
  After a good 10 minutes I chose some tight blue jeans that were distressed in the knee and a black V-neck. I shrugged them on and trudged into my large bathroom, puling a brush through my hair then brushing my teeth and smudging on some eyeliner. I hiked my backpack over my shoulder and descended the stairs, slowly. I wasn't excited, per say. Not excited to be laughed at and ridiculed and mocked. Who would? I snatched an apple off the counter and ate while I watched my siblings bustle around the house in frenzy.
   I finished and tossed the core in the trash, grabbing my keys off the counter. I jingled them impatiently while the twins came bounding down the stairs. Mom kissed each of our cheeks and saw us off, a smile always on her face. She acts as though I couldn't, can't, hear her cry at night sometimes. How she falls apart silently and tries to be strong for us. She puts up this front like nothing can faze her, it's horrifying sometimes, the way she's ... distant.
   "Err, Cora?" Luke said quietly, as if to not disturb me. I turned my head to the side, eying him. "We're here?" He said it like a question. Kaylah was bouncing up and down in her seat, barely holding onto her excitement. I spared her a smile. Though she struck most as a popular girl, she always went for the shy kids. Pulling them out and making them shine was her thing. I nodded briskly and  stepped out of my black mazda, patting it's side affectionately.
   The walk to the office was humiliating, everyone's eyes on us, the whispers of their breath passing us by. I kept my eyes focused on the ground as Luke did, Kaylah strutted like she owned the school already. I admired her courage and self-esteem. Luke shoved the large metal door open and we stepped in, the cold air whooshed past us.
  I approached the desk and opened my backpack digging for my dry-erase. Kaylah put a hand out to stop me, I looked at her in a confused manner. "Hello, we're the new kids. Kaylah Markings," She pointed to herself. "Luke Markings." She gestured to Luke. "And Cora Markings." She pointed to me now. Wow, you'd think she'd be older than me with the aura of self-assurance she gave off. I felt small next to her.
  The lady behind the desk shuffled around a few papers before handing us folders, in the order Kaylah introduced us. As she handed me mine, sympathy flashed through her eyes. Ugh, I'll be getting this all day. Doesn't anybody get that Sympathy doesn't make it better? Doesn't fix it?
 "Kay, me and Luke are gonna go. Love you sis." Kaylah bounced forward and kissed my cheek before grabbing Luke's arm and fleeing the small office. Thanks guys, I thought sarcastically. Oh, come on Cora! Your a Junior and your mad because your Sophomore siblings left you? New low. I scoffed at my own mind before shutting the voice down. I peeked in the folder and checked over my Schedule.

1st Period: A.P. Science
2nd: American History
3rd: Gym
4th: Photography
5th: A.P. English
6th: A.P. Pre-Calculus
7th: Art

 I smiled as I read Gym, I love it. I think I might actually like it he- SMACK What the freak? My butt hit the ground with a thud. I looked up, frightened. Please don't tell me they were gonna hit me. "Owww." I looked up to see... Lee? Luke? LEO ! Leo rubbing his head in pain. If I could , I would apologize. Instead I picked myself up and brushed off my jeans. "Mystery Girl?" Leo's voice spoke out again. I tilted my head to the side and looked into his deep hazel eyes. Mystery girl? His expression softened for a second before hardening. "Watch where your going." He shoved my shoulder and he brushed by. Bi-polar much? Jerk-face! I shouted in my head, wiping the almost-happy expression from my face.
  I looked down at my schedule after walking into a random hallway. The walls were a sickly, pristine white. I shuddered and stared down at my map, trying to decipher a route to 1st period. Hmm, I wonder i-BAM! Again? Really? What the hell is up with this school? I bent my head up and met a girl my age, rubbing her shoulder. She had long dark hair than had bangs to the side, her aquamarine eyes were huge and apologetic.
  "OhMyGawd! I'm sooo sorry. Wow, you're really pretty. I'm Melanie." My brain took a second to process all her words as the nearly melded together. I stared at her held out hand until she dropped it down, awkward. I picked myself up again hastily.  Melanie peered over my shoulder at my schedule, smiling brightly. "Come on! I have you in my first period!" She took hold of my hand and pulled me along down the narrow corridors, chatting about something.
   She let go of my hand to pull open a large wooden door, before stepping in. I followed her with my head ducked down. The teacher stopped mid-sentence. "Look who I found roaming the hall!" Melanie bubbled, gesturing to me. The middle-aged man spared me a kind smile. I looked around the room, my eyes landing on Leo. He was sitting at his desk, seemingly innocent. He gawked at me and I smirked in return.
 The blond girl to the right of him glared daggers at me, which I brushed off easily. "You must be Cora. I'm Mr. Markey" The man said, snapping me to attention. I gave a short nod. "Introduce yourself to the class." Was he seriously stupid? I gave him a look that said 'your joking.' "Go on." Mr. Markey urged, still being kind. Whatever. I dug inside my bag, completely aware of Leo's unnerving gaze. Where's my board? My hands moved frantically inside my already-cluttered backpack. "Never mind then." Mr. Markey said brusquely.
   I zipped my backpack shut as the teacher spoke again. "Sit where you like.'' I nodded at him agained and ignored Leo's gaze more than ever. The blonde bimbo at his side was still glaring. Man, did she ever blink? Melanie snatched my hand and yanked me to the back of the room, sitting me in the window seat to the left of her. A boy in front of her turned and gave me a seductive smile, earning a thwack from Mel. He was taller than me, with skater cut black hair. He had blue-green eyes that held depth. He rubbed his arm and wiggled his eyebrows suggestively at Mel, muttering something. Her cheeks reddened and she 'hmphed.'
  Throughout first period I was forced to listen to Leo's bimbo. She would giggle at everything he said and shoot me a glare. I focused on Mr. Markey who was discussing something scientific. I heard a short giggle and turned to glare at the blonde, who didn't seem to notice me. Leo was leaning over to talk in her ear, he spoke again. She threw her head back and gave a burst of exuberant laughter. I felt a stab of jealousy and counted down the minutes until I could leave this horrible torture chamber.
  The bell rang and I sped from the room, before remembering just how bad my sense of direction was. I was going in endless circles until someone grabbed my arm. It was Melanie. Her black hair was windblown, blue eyes wide. "Want me to help you, Cora?" She smirked at my surprise, until I realized Mr. Markey had said my name. I looked at the presence behind her, eyebrows shooting up. The boy from earlier stood beside her, a smirk on his lips. "Hi, it's Eli." I nodded at him. "You should see your face." He remarked, laughing easily. I smiled a little and gestured to the hallway.
  Melanie grabbed my hand and yanked me along. "You know Cora, I can already tell your different. In a good way. We here," She gestured to her and Eli. "Are the loners of the school." I wasn't surprised. The way people stayed away from us like the plague. "Soo, what's up?" She waited expectantly. "Err, Cora? You in there?" I nodded at her and grimaced. Un-zipping my backpack, fishing around for my board. BINGO ! My fingers enclosed around it's narrow edge, pulling it out. Melanie and Eli gave me confused expressions.
  I un-capped the marker and scribbled across it. I'm Mute. Though those two words didn't seem important when they were apart, pushed together made all the difference. Made someone's whole world fall apart before they would want to speak. Not that they could. I inhaled a deep breath and spun the board around.
  Melanie's hand pulled up over her mouth and Eli just stared. After an awkward minute I looked down. "We'll protect you." They said at the same time, before bursting into a laughing fit. I heaved in silent laughter, they noticed and stopped. Melanie pulled me into a hug, muttering "I'm sorry." I was awed at the affection. For a girl she just met? How sweet. She stepped back and I shrugged in a 'What can you do?' Kinda way. "Well, Cora. We're your new best friends. Count on us!'' Eli said, before raising his hand in a high five. I smacked his hand and smiled slyly.
  Mel grabbed both our hands, earning a blush from Eli in the process, and took off down the hall. I was dumbfounded. They accepted me so easily? How? Why? So many questions swirled around. They swirled around my head in an uncomfortable way, making me doubt their intentions. But, as a risked a glance at Eli and Melanie giggling over nothing, I knew.
   It was worth it, for this friendship. It was worth everything I was set against. Maybe, I could have some people that would love me? Just maybe, they could heal me.

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