Confessions of a High School Supermodel

Meet Maddie Fox, a self-proclaimed Lozerilla. She’s 16, loves One Direction, shops at Forever 21, and frequently spends high school lunchtime hiding inside a bathroom stall. Maddie dreams of fitting in with the popular girls, but her shyness (and the fact that she has the most embarrassing family in the world) makes that impossible.


But when a chance encounter with a modeling scout thrusts Maddie into stardom as the next Victoria’s Secret supermodel, the girl that no boy ever looked at twice is suddenly a sex symbol, her picture on every teenage guy’s bedroom wall.


Maddie has to navigate her newfound fame amidst the jealous girls at school who want to see her crash and burn. But is getting everything you ever wanted all it’s cracked up to be?

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11. Chapter 11

11

 

 

 

The next morning, Maddie lay under the covers, quietly staring at the blank wall next to her bed.  She had no desire to get up and get ready for school.  She had no desire to do anything other than lay right here and continue staring at the blank wall.  Is this what depression feels like? she wondered idly. 

She could hear her mom calling, “Mad, it’s almost seven thirty!  Hurry up in there!”  Maddie scowled at the very sound of her mom’s voice.  There she was, trying to act all normal, as if Maddie had forgiven her.  Her mother was most definitely NOT forgiven.  Maddie doubted she’d ever forgive her for the rest of her life. 

Last night, Maddie had run to her room and stayed there the whole evening.  She had briefly considered coming out for dinner when her stomach started growling, but she changed her mind after she found a couple of hard mint candies and a half-full can of Pringles shoved inside one of the purses in her closet.  The candies weren’t exactly filling and the chips tasted really stale, but it was better than nothing.  She was determined to let her mom know how angry she was, and the silent treatment seemed to be her best bet. 

At 7:28 am, her mom poked her head inside Maddie’s door.  “You’re still in bed?” she screeched.  “MADISON!  We’re leaving in two minutes whether you’re ready or not!  I don’t care if you’re still in your pajamas!”

With a groan, Maddie kicked off her covers and rolled out of bed.  The last thing she felt like doing right now was going to school.  But Maddie’s mom had never been one of those easygoing parents you see on TV who let their kids stay home from school whenever they wanted.  Even when she and Cassidy were somewhat sick, they still had to go to school. 

Maddie quickly scanned the clothes strewn all over her room for something clean to put on.  She didn’t really care what she wore.  She didn’t care about anything this morning.  She purposely avoided looking at the brand new Victoria’s Secret Pinkette clothes that Ann had been nice enough to give her for free back at the photoshoot.

After Maddie’s photo session had finished and right before she had gone home, Ann and some of the other Victoria’s Secret representatives had let her pick out all the Pinkette clothes she wanted for free.  Maddie had tried to be considerate and not greedy by only picking out two or three things, but Ann had encouraged her to load up on as many pieces as she wanted.  So Maddie had ended up with a huge shopping bag stuffed with t-shirts, hoodies, pants, bathing suits, bras, and undies. 

Maddie stared at all the bright colors hanging in her closet with the tags still on them and felt sad.  She could never wear any of these clothes now; it would make her too unhappy.  What should she do with them?  Burn them, probably.  Maybe put them in a cardboard box and bury them in the backyard, like a funeral.  It was the death of her dream, after all. 

She finally picked up a denim skirt and a black top off her chair.  These are clean, rightBlack is good because it matches my soul, she thought darkly and somewhat melodramatically.

She pulled the clothes on with lightning speed, and they were out the door by 7:35 am. 

Maddie’s bad mood only deepened when she got to school.  She sat sullenly in her first period biology class with her cheek resting in her hand, waiting for the bell to ring so class could start.  Sundance and Livia were sitting right in front of her examining something on an iPhone when Maddie caught a snippet of their conversation.

 “I love looking at pictures of fat people on Facebook.” Sundance smirked.  “It just makes me happy.”

“I know, right?”  Livia simpered.   “Oh hey, I brought you something this morning!”  Livia, who was naturally very tiny and petite, smiled mischievously and pulled out a glazed donut from her bag.  “Want it?” she offered to Sundance, all wide-eyed and innocent.  “I already ate, like, three for breakfast.”

 Sundance frowned.  “No thanks, I’m not hungry.  I’m never, ever hungry in the mornings,” she stated mechanically, watching the donut with a ravenous expression.

Livia licked some of the glazed icing off her fingers.  “Are you sure?” she asked slyly.  “It tastes pretty incredible.”

Sundance scowled.  “I don’t want that donut!” she said sternly.

 “Geez!  Ok, fine!”  Livia shrugged.

“Just keep that donut away from me!

Sawyer leaned over to the two girls and imitated Sundance in a high pitched voice.  “I try to eat really fresh food!  Like today, I had a hot dog and it was sooo fresh!”

Sawyer’s joke broke the tension and the three of them laughed.

Overhearing this conversation usually wouldn’t bother Maddie very much, but today she found it extremely annoying.  The girl sitting next to Maddie had heard their conversation too and obviously found it as annoying as she did, because the girl (Maddie was pretty sure her name was Bree) snorted and visibly rolled her eyes.  She caught Maddie’s eye and gave her a look that plainly said, ‘They’re so stupid!’  Maddie smiled for second before she remembered she was supposed to be depressed.  She quickly turned away. 

Girls who constantly complained about how fat they were always irritated Maddie.  Ironically enough, the girls who seemed to complain the most were usually the skinniest ones of all who had nothing to even worry about.  She tried to ignore it as much as she could, but hearing other girls act so self-conscious made Maddie feel insecure too.  Especially when the girls who whined about their bodies were even smaller and lighter than she was.  So what does that make me, a hippopotamus? she'd ask herself sarcastically. 

Maddie remembered how last week, Sundance and Livia had gotten into a fight after Sundance had brought coffees from Starbucks.  She’d gotten a full fat latte for Livia and a skinny latte for herself.  She’d told Livia they were both skinny lattes, but Livia had tasted the difference and gotten mad.  She accused Sundance of trying to make her fat and a huge argument ensued.  Maddie felt like girls were always playing weird games with each other like that.  They could be so obsessive about food. 

Anyway, other than the donut incident, school dragged on pretty much the same as always.  Until pre-calculus, that is. 

Their pre-calculus teacher gave math quizzes every Friday, so on Thursday, the class would do a review.  Mr. Duncan would write problems from that week’s homework on the board, and then call up kids one by one to work them out in front of everyone. 

Maddie hadn’t done last night’s homework assignment.  It wasn’t like her not to do her homework, but after what had happened in Ann’s office yesterday, she hadn’t been able to do a thing last night except lay in bed and brood. 

Their teacher Mr. Duncan was a tiny old man who was generally very sweet.   He looked out at the class searching for a volunteer to solve the next problem.  Usually, he seemed to hear Maddie’s silent prayers to please not call on her, but apparently not today. 

“Maddie, could you come up here and solve the equation?” Mr. Duncan asked kindly.

Of course.  What else could go wrong?

Maddie sighed and slowly got up from her seat and walked to the chalkboard, knowing full well she had no hope whatsoever of coming up with the correct answer.  Besides that, she hated the attention of feeling everyone’s eyes boring into her back.

Maddie stared at the problem on the board, pretending to think about it in deep concentration the way kids do when they don’t know an answer to something. 

Finally, when she felt she had been looking long enough to make it seem like she was putting in a good effort, she turned sharply to ask Mr. Duncan for help, the words “I don’t know the answer” forming on her lips.   As she turned, the waistband of her denim skirt caught on the corner of the metal bar that holds the chalk at the bottom of the chalkboard.

The snag on the chalkboard combined with Maddie’s sudden movement caused her to unexpectedly trip. 

Her feet went stumbling around her as she struggled to keep her balance.  She watched in horror as the jagged metal edge of the chalkboard caught her skirt right in the loose threads on the seam.  Her knee-length denim skirt ripped right along the side almost the entire way to the bottom. 

Maddie managed to clutch the tattered remains of her skirt a split second before it fell off her body, revealing her underwear.  She froze in place for a second before she dared to raise her face.

The entire class erupted into surprised laughter.  Maddie could see gleeful looks on everyone’s faces, including Sundance, Livia, and Sawyer.  At least now they were finally paying attention to the front of the classroom. 

Mr. Duncan hurried over to her and said over the noise of the howling kids, “Go!  You can go to the bathroom!” 

Maddie stumbled towards the door with her head ducked so no one would see how red her face was.  She clutched the material of her skirt tight around her as she slowly hopped toward the exit. 

Mr. Duncan leaned over to a girl sitting in the front row and asked, “Could you go and help her?”

Bree Taylor jumped up out of her seat and hurried over to Maddie.  Bree pulled off her denim jacket and held it around the side of Maddie’s body where the rip was located, to shield it from view. 

Bree held the jacket at that awkward angle as she and Maddie hobbled clumsily to the girl’s bathroom, leaving the noise of laughter fading into the background.  Bree was the same girl who had overheard the donut conversation earlier that day.  Maddie didn’t know her very well at all, as Bree didn’t say much in class, and during lunch, she usually hung out with the seniors in the grade above. 

By the time they got to the bathroom, Maddie was a total wreck and her face hurt from trying to prevent herself from crying.  She wasn’t just upset about the skirt- it was everything. 

Every good thing she had felt right after her photoshoot was completely gone now.  The excitement of an accident that acted like destiny, the confidence she felt trying something new and actually being good at it, the feeling that anything could be possible...  It had all been erased.

Bree stepped back and carefully assessed the damage.  She tried tying the corners of the skirt to keep it together, but it was ripped almost all the way through.

“Look, Maddie, it’s not that bad,” Bree said consolingly.  “It could’ve happened to anybody.  Don’t be embarrassed!”

Maddie just sniffled.  Why is my life so miserable?

“I’m going to go to the nurse’s office to try to get some safety pins.  You just stay inside here and try to relax, okay?  Don’t cry.”  She game Maddie a quick hug and flounced out the door. 

It was this small gesture of kindness that released the floodgates.  Maddie could feel all the stress and pressure of the past few weeks compressing inside her body, like a giant hand squeezing her insides.  Everything bubbled to the surface, from her mean mom, to the lost Victoria’s Secret opportunity, to the anxiety of just being in high school.  She didn’t try any longer to hold back the tears.

While Bree was gone, Maddie’s eyes refocused on the bathroom door swung wide open in front of her.  She realized she was standing right in front of the same bathroom stall she had been in that day she had gone to the mall, the stall with the giant YOLO.  She temporarily forgot her plight with the skirt as she saw someone had continued the conversation written on the door.  “They’re all just jealous of you.  Don’t think so.”  Someone had written below that, “You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”  Maddie briefly wondered where that quote was from.  She rolled her eyes out of obligation because of how cheesy it was, but it was the sort of positive, inspirational message a person welcomed at a moment like this.   

Maddie felt like she could no longer keep her problems inside anymore.  She needed to just get them off her chest and tell somebody. 

Bree returned to the bathroom with a jumbo-sized box of silver safety pins she’d gotten from the school nurse.  The two girls painstakingly worked on pinning together Maddie’s skirt down the entire seam.  As they worked, Maddie told her the whole story of what had happened the past few weeks.  How a Victoria’s Secret representative had approached her at the mall.  How she had done a test photoshoot with a professional photographer and hair and makeup stylists.  How they had selected Maddie out of all the other girls to star in the campaign.  And finally, how her mom wouldn’t allow Maddie to do it because she was too young.

Bree was fascinated by the story.  She was a good listener.  She asked questions in the right places, laughed in the right places, gasped in the right places.  You could tell she was genuinely listening too, and not just waiting for her own turn to talk.  She was shocked at first, especially at the part where Maddie explained that she was selected for the campaign, but she didn’t argue.

Once they were finished with the skirt, Bree found her makeup bag and helped Maddie put on some concealer to cover up the redness around her eyes.

“So they really chose you to model for their campaign?”

“Yeah.  Believe me, I was as shocked as anybody.”

“And your mom said no?”

Maddie nodded glumly.

“How could she do that?  Isn’t there some law in the constitution against cruel and unusual punishment?”

“She said the pictures were too sexy.  And she didn’t want me to get exploited.  And that I was too young to make that kind of decision.”

“Too young?” Bree crowed.  “Too young?  You’re sixteen!  You’re old enough to drive.  You’re practically considered an adult!"

“Besides,” Bree continued, “I’m sure the pictures weren’t too sexy.  You can go to the beach and see more skin than a Victoria’s Secret ad!”

Maddie scowled.  “I bet anyone else’s mom would let them do it!  I bet your mom would!”

Bree shrugged.  “I dunno.  My mom can be lame sometimes too.” She cocked her head to one side and paused for a second. “Do you think they’ve already offered the job to someone else?”

Maddie shrugged.  “Maybe.  It only happened yesterday.”

Bree looked at Maddie quite seriously, her eyes wide and sparkling.  Why is she looking at me like that? Maddie thought.

“I’m going to help you get that Victoria’s Secret job!  I have a plan!”

 

 

 

Favorite Quotes

 

“Happy girls are the prettiest girls.” 

            -Audrey Hepburn

 “In your life you'll do things greater than dating the boy on the football team.  But I didn't know it at fifteen.”

            -Taylor Swift

“Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.”

            -Carl Bard

“I realize everybody wants what they don't have. But at the end of the day, what you have inside is much more beautiful than what's on the outside!”

            -Selena Gomez

“All our dreams can come true—if we have the courage to pursue them.”

            -Walt Disney

 “I wish we could all get along like we used to in middle school. I wish I could bake a cake filled with rainbows and smiles and everyone would eat and be happy.”

            -Mean Girls

"No one ever told me I was pretty when I was a little girl.  All little girls should be told they are pretty, even if they aren't."

            - Marilyn Monroe

“The best revenge is massive success.”

            -Frank Sinatra

           

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