I sat in my hard blue chair, nervously fidgeting with the gold tassel on my graduation cap. To my left, one of my classmates, Niall, had out his phone (which was supposed to be off). The principle was in the middle of giving a speech to the parents, guardians, friends, etc. Niall meanwhile, was vlogging. Yes. He was vlogging. Under his breath, he panned the camera over to me and whispered "Liz. It's the big day. How is our Valedictorian feeling in this moment?"

   Despite the rule of staying quiet, I laughed. It drew the attention of a few classmates, so I quickly clapped my hand over my mouth to stop any more giggles from escaping. Niall brought the camera back to himself and continued whispering in a hushed tone.

   I calmed down, and removed my hand from over my lips. I scanned the crowd, trying to catch a glimpse of my family. I spotted them on the right side of the gymnasium, taking up almost an entire row in the middle of the room. My parents, siblings, grandparents, and an aunt and uncle from my mom's side. I grinned, flashing them all a smile. My aunt and grandmother waved. My mom scolded me for not paying attention to the principal. Scared of facing her wrath, I turned my focus to him.

   Despite the stereotypes surrounding principals, ours was actually pretty cool. Sure, I still held a grudge against him for cutting our basketball team, but that was in the past. Soon I would be off to university and-OH MY GOD!!!!!!!!

      In my head, I screamed at the top of my lungs. Strolling into the gym in his typical, 30-minutes-late fashion, was Mark. It took all of my strength to remain seated in my chair, and not to run across the stage and jump into his arms. The last time I had seen him was at the very end of April. It was now the end of June. Instead, I waved as he scurried in and took a seat at the end of my parent's row, in the only empty seat. It hit me-My parents must have been in on the surprise! They all both had smug looks on their faces, telling me that they definitely did help plan the surprise. By now I was being a completely basic teenage girl and trying not to cry.

   Snapping me back to reality, the principal called me up to give my valedictorian speech. Now, I'm not one to brag but I'm a pretty damn good public speaker. I had my speech memorized for weeks. But right in that moment, my mind went blank. I had forgotten everything. Slowly I stood up, trying not to let my nerves paralyze me.

   I stood behind our blue and gold podium, awkwardly adjusting my cap. I surveyed the crowd, gulped, and opened my mouth to speak. Thankfully I was interrupted by the sound of the gymnasium doors slamming closed. Everyone in the room turned to see what the disturbance was all about. When I caught sight of the criminals, it was all I could do to hold back my laughter. Craig and Coco, hand in hand, were barging into the gym, very late and very carefree. Craig smiled and waved.

   "It's okay everyone, we have arrived. You may now proceed with the ceremony." Craig's statement got quite a laugh out of my classmates, and it was just enough humour to calm me down before I actually started talking.

   When everyone settled down I began for the second time. "Well...I suppose you're all expecting a long, somewhat inspiring, yet incredibly dull speech. Well uhm, let me tell ya, I did have one planned, so boring and long that it would blow your minds. But, due to the uhm, excitement of the current situation, I don't remember a damn word of it."

   Audience members, students, and most of the teachers cracked up. Even my principal managed a smirk. The vice principal was scowling, but that was nothing new. Do you ever meet a certain person who you just can't help but want to punch in the face no matter what they do? Yeah, that's her. I took another breath and kept the improv rolling.

   "So, I'm already up here and I've already thrown myself under the bus so I might as well keep being honest." Some nervous looks all around. "High school, in general,  sucked."

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