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People should be understanding of something like this. They shouldn't judge. They should help.

They should, but most of them don't.

* * * * * 

May 11, 2017

I enter my classroom, aware that everyone is staring at me. They all lean towards one another and start whispering, pointing and laughing. I didn't expect anything else from them. I've known them for long enough to know that this is how they will treat me from now on. Quietly, I slip into my seat and start taking out my books. No one comes to ask me if I am ok. Not a single person. It makes sense, I don't have a single friend in this classroom.

"Well hello there."

I only have haters.

I look up to see Gabriel, a tall, solid, black-haired boy smelling of cigarettes. How do I describe him? Well, let's say that if the Devil would choose a henchman, Gabriel would be top of the list. He takes every opportunity to insult me, bully me, and so on. All because I have better grades than him and the teachers like me. 

"Hi to you too," I say blankly, taking out my water bottle and putting in my desk.

"So where were you all this time? The loony house?"

I bite the insides of my mouth a bit harder, stifling an argument. I can't blame him. Anyone who was part of the math lesson a month ago probably thought the same thing...

I am trying to control it. It's almost the end of class.

I lift my shoulders up and down as discreetly as possible.

I can make it, no one noticed

But the sensation gets stronger and stronger, I can't keep it much longer. I'm gonna lose my mind.

I bite my lip as hard as I can to maybe distract myself.

"Lyla? Are you paying attention?"

I look up and see Ms. Bell, my math teacher, looking down at me with a stern look on her face.

"I'm sorry, what?" I say, feeling myself getting as red as a tomato. I was so lost in my thoughts I probably didn't notice her picking me to answer the question.

She gestures me to an equation she wrote on the blackboard. I relax immediately. I know this, it is easy.

I open my mouth to answer, and as I do so I feel myself snap. I just can't.

I let out a high pitched sound.

A moment of silence. Then the class erupts in laughter.

"Silence! All of you!" Ms. Bell shouts.

But no one listens to her. All eyes are on me. Everyone is pointing, laughing, even imitating me.

My eyes stinging with tears, I pick up my backpack, quickly stuff my pens and books in it and run out of the classroom, leaving behind the laughter and the mocking.

I lift my shoulders up and down.

I twitch my nose.

I let out a high pitched sound.

I had to stay at home for a month after that incident. The tics got so bad I didn't want to leave the house. High pitched sound after high pitched sound, continuously, no breaks. Sleepless nights after sleepless nights. I would lie in bed at night, breathing heavily, letting out high pitched sounds, crying, and praying for all of it to stop.

My parents ended up scheduling an appointment with a doctor from Italy in June, right after my exams.  Apparently, that is the only specialised clinic in Europe. I get a trip to Milan and some help, so I can't complain.

If it were after me, I would've stayed home for the rest of the year, but I can't. At the end of the year, I take the exam that decides in which high school I get into and I cannot miss it. And today was also the day when we had a simulation of the exam. Normally, it would be exactly like it. Thirty children in a classroom, two hours, strict supervision. But because of the risk of getting kicked out of the exam, my parents filed a request form that allowed me to take the simulation and the exam in a separate classroom, plus an extra hour. I didn't need the latter, but it came with the package. It got accepted, raising even more suspicion from my classmates. Why would I stay somewhere else and get an extra hour?

"Hello? Are you still here?" says Gabriel, breaking me out of my thoughts. He lets out a high pitched scream, imitating me. It hurts more than I like to admit. For someone to be mocking me because of something I can't control.

"Hey Lyla, why'd you come back if you're still crazy?" says Marcus, passing by. He and Gabriel high five, laughing. I scoff and roll my eyes.

I let out a quiet high pitched sound. It literally hurts to be doing that in front of him.

"So tell me" continues Gabriel, " how come you've missed a whole month of school and still have top grades?"

I decide not to answer. If he can't remember or ignores the fact that I came in at least twice to take a test so I don't fall behind, it doesn't make sense to continue.

"And you are not marked absent either! Why do YOU get away with that?"

"None of your business," I mutter, opening up my pencil pouch.

I need to open and close the zipper once more.

I open and close the zipper, hoping that if I act like he isn't there, Gabriel will just leave and go annoy someone else.

"Say I left school.  Of course, I would get marked absent and repeat the year. Come on, teach me, how do I kiss up to the teachers like that?" he pushes on.

"Idiot," I whisper.

I let out a semi-quiet high pitched sound.

"I'm an idiot, eh?" he says with a smirk.

He turns around and goes back to his desk, making sure to kick my chair in his way.

I let out a high pitched sound.

* * *

Society won't understand

I never thought it will

They don't know what it is

And it's unnatural to them

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