10 | Panic Room

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In-school suspension could be easily compared to serving a prison sentence

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In-school suspension could be easily compared to serving a prison sentence. Each required you to sit in a cell for the majority of the day, took away most of your legal rights, and even gave you a cellmate to bide your time with. Unfortunately, my cellmate was Sebastian Phillips.

"Dad, don't make me go," I pleaded, fixing him with the most pitiful stare I could muster. "Please don't make me go."

Though he had two other teenage daughters who could simply bat their eyelashes and get out of almost anything, my father didn't look like he was going to give in to this, no matter how much I begged.

"You do the crime, you do the time," he replied, shooting me an unsympathetic look. "If you and that Phillips boy hadn't gone after each other like that, maybe you wouldn't be sitting in ISS for the day."

"It was inevitable," I sighed, nervously toying with the diamond ring that never left my finger nowadays. "I can't stand him, Dad."

"I can't stand a lot of people, kiddo. Doesn't mean I'd try to tackle any of them."

"I didn't try to tackle him," I huffed. "I was just trying to get a point across."

He snorted humorlessly. "You're hilarious." He grabbed my bag from the backseat of the car and shoved it into my arms. "Now get going."

Groaning loudly, I pushed open the car door and stepped out onto the sidewalk. "Don't be surprised if I come home with a bruise or two," I called through the open window as I shut the door. "Or even in a body bag."

He shook his head, putting the Jaguar in gear. "Have a good day, Taliana. And please, try not to get in any more trouble."

"Not making any promises on that one. Bye, Dad."

Charles sent me a wink before pulling away from the curb, leaving me standing in front of the school with the other kids who had yet to pass through the gates of hell. I could feel a few sets of eyes on me, but luckily the stares weren't as bad as they had been yesterday. If anything, I had expected them to be a thousand times worse now that my rivalry with Sebastian was back full force.

I scanned the crowd for any sort of familiar face, but found none. The twins had left the house earlier than me and our dad, meaning they were probably somewhere inside the building already, and it had been a couple days since I had last seen Jude. I probably would have run into him yesterday had I not left as soon as the Headmaster dismissed me.

Today, however, instead of being stuck in a class with Sebastian and thirteen other people, it was just going to be the two of us in a room. Maybe we'd have a monitor if we were lucky, but going off of my past ISS experiences -- which were unsurprisingly numerous -- they usually only popped in when it was convenient to them. And knowing me and Sebastian, I was sure no one would want to sit in a room with us for very long.

The first warning bell rang a few moments later and I managed to get to homeroom just as the last bell rang. As I dropped into my seat in the back of the classroom, I silently prayed that something would happen to get me out of reporting to room 132 in less than ten minutes. Maybe there would be a fire drill and I could escape while everyone went outside. Or maybe there would be some sort of bomb threat and we would go into lock down, thus preventing me from having to leave the safety of homeroom for what could very well be hours. Or maybe we'd get a surprise visit from the President or the Secretary of State, and classes would be canceled for the rest of the day. All those things had happened in the past, but for some reason I doubted anything of the likes would occur now, especially because I actually wanted it to.

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