Teenage Cake

Annalynne goes to an all-girls high school where she's surrounded by snobby girls who think "good-looking" is a quality to put on a resume. A chance encounter with a boy at a party leads Annalynne to a coming-of-age experience.


4. Apple Pie




      Moonlight shone through the trees as Annalynne crept through the wooded cemetery, wincing at the sound of twigs snapping under her feet. Why am I here? It had seemed like forever since they first met at Angela’s party, but it was really only about two weeks ago. Her memories of that night were very splattered… something along the lines of a color in Pollock’s paintings, one of the underneath ones, she’d say.

      She approached the grave as cautiously as she always did and waited for Jace. Each time, they met at the same headstone, a crumbly old one with ivy growing all over it. Buried there was some boy named Peter Collins who’d died at age seventeen. His epitaph read “There’s nothing so sacred as honor, and nothing so loyal as love.” Annalynne liked it immensely. She felt this particular grave made their meetings seem more poetic and romantic. She felt very much like Juliet in her very own forbidden love affair.

      Annalynne’s parents were not terribly strict and she didn’t think they would mind if she had a boyfriend, but sneaking around felt so much more naughty. It was easy for her to rebel, because the parental grip wasn’t very tight. But it was none of her parents business if she had a boyfriend. Besides, the relationship was heightened by the scene being secretive and probably dangerous… it was exciting. This was the big world. This was the wicked world.

      To her, Jace represented a sort of backless wardrobe, a gateway to a far more interesting life than the one she’d led thus far. Being a teenager was sort of hopeless, she’d decided. She longed for the day when she’d be allowed to have her own life away from her parents, away from this town. She wanted to go to college someplace far away. Like Europe. Someplace where no one would recognize her and where they didn’t even speak English. She would buy new shoes and clothes and art books, the expensive ones that cost fifty bucks. Anything to pretend she was someone else.

      Annalynne liked the cemetery. The grass was as smooth as a pool table top, and there were shrubs and flowers. It was a nice place to come for a picnic on a sunny day. She stiffened at the sound of some leaves cracking and relaxed as she saw Jace approaching. “Hey.” She smiled shyly up at him, as if he were reading the part in her diary where she’d written about him. As it happened, Annalynne lost her virginity to Jace that very night.

      “I’ve never done this before,” she murmured as Jace slipped her white dress over her head.

      “That’s okay,” Jace said. “I have.”

      Some girls might have been grossed out. They might have begun to imagine Jace with other slutty, possibly diseased girls. They might have imagined that Jace was an egomaniacal player, roving from girl to girl, always hungry and never satisfied. Some girls might have had a creeping fear that he would use them and then toss them out. But Annalynne was not like other girls.

      Jace took her in his arms and began the quick work of deflowering her. As is the way with all rites of passage, it seemed to be over almost as soon as it had begun. It was inelegant, thrilling, and routinely monumental. They snuggled on the grass afterward, but when the sky began to lighten, they hastily kissed goodbye and parted. Annalynne shook the dead leaves out of her hair and began the short walk home. She had to be back in bed before her mom came into her room to wake her up for school.


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