Chapter 1

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I rubbed my face on my pillow as I hit the alarm. Why is it that the time you need to get up is when you're the most comfortable? That's why I've always hated mornings. Still, I had to get up for school.

Voices drifted down the hallway as I began pulling clothes out of my closet. My parents were going at it again. Of course. This was happening more and more lately. I wasn't sure what it was about, but I'd learned to not care. Still, I couldn't help but be slightly curious as I dressed and slipped silently into the hall. Bits of words made it to me before I reached the bathroom, but I forced myself to ignore them. It was always better when I stayed out of it.

The first moment of peace since leaving my bed came when I got in my car. Don't get me wrong, I do love my parents. But, on mornings like this, I almost wanted them to separate or something. It drove me well past crazy to hear them fighting like that and then know that one of them is about to head to their shared bedroom to cry.

It hurt me, too.

I took a deep breath as I got closer to my best friend's house. Now was not the time for me to get all emotional about things. None of my friends knew my parents fought. I didn't want anyone to know, not even my best friend.

Especially that I've had to cover up hand prints. Knowing that may parents had slapped me for things wouldn't go over well at all with anyone, even if it was over me sticking my nose where it didn't belong.

I pulled up to the curb and checked my face one last time in the mirror.

A normal 17-year-old high school girl stared back.

I breathed a sigh of relief. No one could tell. Of course. This was a mask I'd carefully built over the last few years or so. All anyone would see is the cheerful girl that practically chirps her words half the time. Which is how I liked it.

The passenger door opened and Riley slid into the car. "You would not believe what happened last night," she said, skipping the hellos. I smiled at her, listening to a story about some party. That's the one thing that makes us opposites: she always goes to every party but I only go now and then. I have a low tolerance for that kind of stupidity. To me, going to those things is like asking to get in trouble. Always too loud, nothing that hasn't been spiked with something, and people that have no respect for themselves or other people.

Thanks, but I'll pass.

Now, I know how I sound. Riley is my best friend and she loves parties but I don't really feel like they're a good thing. I sound like a hypocrite. But the thing about Riley is that she isn't really my friend, best or otherwise. My other friends aren't really my friends either. Friends know each other. At least, they know the important things. But they don't. They don't know me. Besides, they're the only ones that will hang out with me.

It's not that I'm some sort of outcast or misfit or something like that. It's not that I'm popular, either. I'm somewhere in the middle. Your average invisible girl.

Riley's story lasted the whole way to school. I was kind of relieved when I finally parked. I knew I wouldn't have to hear much more of this story.

We both got out and found our friend, Mary, standing on the steps. She was holding the latest iPhone, earbuds in. She's the rich girl type. She always has the latest thing. It used to annoy me because my family didn't have the extra money to buy me the newest phone or, up until a year or two ago, a laptop. I haven't even been able to replace the screen of my phone that has a bad crack in it. But I find I prefer having the same phone.

There's a sort of comfort I found in having a familiar object in hand.

Mary saw us coming and took out her wireless earbuds. "Hey," she said, reaching out to hug us as we got close. "How was your weekend, Evelyn?"

I shrugged. "Same as always. I finished editing the video I'm uploading tonight and got a bit of a head start on next week's."

"Can't wait to see it," Mary said with a smile.

They always looked forward to my YouTube videos. If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't be posting anything, but here we are. Last year they'd pushed me until I finally made a channel and posted my first ever video. Since then my channel has grown to over 100,000, which is exciting and slightly terrifying. Especially since I average about 80,000 views. But at least most of the comments I get are nice. People saying I have nice hair, I'm pretty, and all that.

The only problem I really have with that is I know I'm not pretty or beautiful. I'm average. When someone tells me otherwise I feel like they're lying or trying to flatter me because they want something. I would say I wish they would stop leaving those comments, but all I'd probably be left with are hate comments. Almost no one said anything about my videos. I mean, with the type of videos I make it makes sense, but still. There's a lot of time and effort in every second and it doesn't feel appreciated.

Maybe one day I'll save myself the trouble and just post a single unedited video. Maybe.

The only good thing about a Monday at school is that I get to start off with English, my favorite subject. It helped that we did a lot of reading, which was one of my favorite things to do. All of that reading also helped me to get better at writing. I usually got A's on all my writing assignments. Plus, it made me start a secret Wattpad account where I posted short one-shots about things that happened in my life and essays and one or two actual stories.

I normally enjoyed my other classes, too, but lunch period? That's when everything seemed to go downhill. As your average invisible girl, I wanted to spend my lunch in the library. Riley and Mary wanted to actually spend it in the cafeteria, and since I wanted to keep a certain image, I went with them.

The table we sat at was almost in the middle of the cafeteria. Technically, we were right below the popular students on the social food chain - respected, but not that popular. I couldn't care less, but Mary was always excited because the populars had been talking to her lately.

We reached the table and sat down. I braced myself for having to be the center of attention, but Mary and Riley? They got excited. I couldn't. Not after I found out what's behind the top two girls in the pecking order, anyway.

Don't get me wrong here. I'm not the type to go dig up dirt on anyone. I honestly don't care what they do or don't do in their personal lives. But because I obviously don't care, I guess, I hear things. People tell me things. People who know what they're talking about.

Courtney, the head of the popular kids, looked like the poster girl for J. Crew but everything she had on came from Goodwill. She couldn't afford any of that off the rack because her family wasn't doing well financially.

Lexi, the second in line, was the heiress of some high-end boutique chain that was gaining popularity. She could probably buy Easter Island with her monthly allowance. Well, when she had one, that is. Her parents had cut her off. Not sure why, though. All I did know was that she worked at a pizza place across town doing deliveries for them. Which meant she worked with the guy that was the lowest on the food chain. You know the type: glasses-wearing, straight-A, video game-playing nerd who also posted videos on YouTube. In fact, I had done a video with him not too long ago. I hadn't posted it or even edited it yet, but he had something interesting to tell me about Lexi: she was his girlfriend. They were dating.

It was a bit of a shock. The second most popular girl in the school was dating the guy everyone picked on. Who would have thought? Apparently it was a closely guarded secret that only them and their families knew about.

Riley nudged me at that moment and nodded at the door. My eyes locked on the boy walking into the lunchroom. Everyone else was forgotten as the most beautiful boy I'd ever seen came closer.

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