Staring up from my knees, face stained with tears, I saw her.
She was staring at me from on the other side of the bus seat.
Long golden hair.
Light blue framed glasses.
She was staring. Just staring. Eyes frozen to mine.
How had I not noticed her there? This random stranger had been sitting just metres from me, witnessing my entire sloppy-eyed meltdown.
I was embarrassed.
"Oh... I'm sorry..." I stuttered, apologising for having my massive tantrum right in front of her.
"It's OK," she replied.
We sat in silence for a while.
"So... What's wrong?" The girl asked, curious.
"Oh, it's just it's my first day of high school and I'm already getting bullied... Mainly by those stupid, think-they're-so-good trio girls!" I spat. "I came here to get away from them and all the other dramas of Stonewall High..." I trailed off.
"You mean that fancy high school just around the corner?" She asked me.
"That's the one."
"OMG, I go there too!" The girl smiled a surprised grin.
"Yeah! This is my third term... I started at Stonewall when I moved from Transylvania to here at the beginning of the year!"
Transylvania? Creepy! I thought.
"But how come you don't have an accent?" I asked, curiously.
"Oh, I wasn't born there! We were just staying there for a year or two with family that live up there. I did pick up their accent a bit while I was there, but since coming back here, it's pretty much gone!" She grinned. "So you're in Grade 8, right? The same as me?" She asked.
"Yeah, how'd ya know?" I asked, surprised.
"Just a lucky guess..." She winked.
BEEP BEEP! BEEP BEEP!
My watch screamed at me, drawing my attention to it.
What now?! My mind screeched.
I looked down at the little screen of my watch, it's face illuminated by the morning sun.
9:00AM. Start of school.
"Ugh..." I groaned out loud.
The girl looked over my shoulder at the time on my watch. She sighed.
"Better get going then, aye?" She said encouragingly, a half-smile on her face.
"Oh great... Back to being the new girl..." I moaned.
"Don't worry..." She cooed, patting my shoulder. "It'll be alright, Melissa."
"H-hold on! How do you know my name?!" My heart leapt into my throat. Who was this girl?! She was starting to freak me out! She knew my grade, and my name! It was like she could read my mind! I wanted answers...
"Uhh... Umm..." Her eyes started to dart frantically around. From the floor, to the bus shelter roof, back to the floor. My super-senses started to prick; I could feel the sweat forming on her brow, I could hear her heart beat increasing dramatically, I could sense her shaking.
Something was definitely up.
"It's... Err... On your bag!" She blurted out quickly, pointing to my bag with a shaking finger.
I stared down at my bag. Sticking out of the front was a massive label with the name MELISSA SPARKS in bold, capital letters.
I sighed in relief.
This girl wasn't a nutcase after all... Or was she? I knew she was definitely still hiding something... But then, so was I! I guess I could trust her... She did seem to be pretty funny, and thoroughly understanding... And even if she is hiding something, it's not my business! Maybe I would have a friend to start high school with after all?
But what if she found out my secret? She'd flip if she knew I was like... Part Wolf! She'd probably tell the whole world... But really, she was my only hope if I wanted to survive high school...
"Oh right... On my bag... Hey, you can call me Mel!" I grinned, deciding to trust her.
"Cool... Oh and I'm Charlotte. Charlotte Lockwood. But you can call me Sharl," she held out her hand for me to shake, "If you want to, that is," she added.
"Of course!" I shook her hand.
I stood up from the bus seat, gaining my confidence. I breathed in. I was just about to walk back into a social nightmare!
"Let's get going, shall we?" I held out my hand to help her up.
Taking my hand, she smirked and said. "Yes, we shall!" In a deliberately awful, posh accent. She stood up and we cracked up laughing.
"Thanks..." I muttered, "For cheering me up..."
"Any time, Pal! I mean, what are friends for?" She smiled and I smiled back.
We turned away from the bus stop and started walking back towards the school. Charlotte linked her arm in mine and we began to chat and laugh, just like life-long friends.
I finally had a friend!
I wouldn't be alone to face high school all by myself any more!
And my secret would still stay secret!
Nothing could stop me now!
Until I saw her.